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Edinbellie, Former United Presbyterian Church (Barn)

A Category B Listed Building in Balfron, Stirling

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Coordinates

Latitude: 56.0729 / 56°4'22"N

Longitude: -4.2894 / 4°17'21"W

OS Eastings: 257590

OS Northings: 689043

OS Grid: NS575890

Mapcode National: GBR 0Y.P8BY

Mapcode Global: WH3N3.2MP8

Entry Name: Edinbellie, Former United Presbyterian Church (Barn)

Listing Date: 5 September 1973

Category: B

Source: Historic Scotland

Source ID: 335430

Historic Scotland Designation Reference: LB4202

Building Class: Cultural

Location: Balfron

County: Stirling

Electoral Ward: Forth and Endrick

Parish: Balfron

Traditional County: Stirlingshire

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Description

Earlier 18th century. Rectangular-plan (formerly T-plan incorporating aisle to N); former United Presbyterian church (now barn). Symmetrical design with flat-arched openings with splayed voussoirs (except to N elevation); keystones to those to former principal (S) elevation. Coursed sandstone rubble with ashlar dressings. Eaves cornice. Flush surrounds to openings (except to N elevation).

S (FORMER PRINCIPAL) ELEVATION: largely overgrown (1999). Central entrance (now blocked), originally with circular window above. 2 windows to either side (lower height ones to outer left and outer right).

E and W ELEVATIONS: central entrance (outline of former gabled porch visible); window (blocked) to gable above.

N ELEVATION: large inserted barn entrance to left of centre; window (probably inserted) to right.

Glazing removed (door furniture also). Grey slate roof.

INTERIOR: practically no evidence of former use remaining. Roof trusses replaced (corbels formerly supporting gallery partly intact).

Statement of Interest

An early dissenting church, now (1999) in poor condition as a barn. It would appear to be that referred to in the 'Statistical Account' (1796) as that belonging to '459 Antiburgher Seceders, who have had a place of worship in the parish about 60 years'. One of the earliest dissenting churches in Scotland. It was built following the establishment of a Secession Movement (from the Church of Scotland) in 1733. Balfron appears to have sustained one of the earliest Secession congregations, which met in the 1730's on the banks of the Endrick Water at nearby Honey Holm. Sometimes the Revs. Ebenezer Erskine and Ralph Erskine, two of the founders of the Secession Movement travelled to preach here. In 1742 the congregation got its first permanent minister, the Rev. John Cleland. The church's Session Book details procedings at the 'meeting house of Balfron' from 1742 onwards (the church must have been built at or shortly before this date). By the 1860's it had become the United Presbyterian Church of Balfron. It was replaced by a new United Presbyterian church at Honey Holm in 1865 and descended into use as a farm building.

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