History in Structure

Wemyss Parish Church And War Memorial, Main Street, East Wemyss

A Category B Listed Building in Buckhaven, Methil and Wemyss Villages, Fife

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Latitude: 56.1589 / 56°9'32"N

Longitude: -3.0638 / 3°3'49"W

OS Eastings: 334025

OS Northings: 696759

OS Grid: NT340967

Mapcode National: GBR 2F.HTYF

Mapcode Global: WH6RP.XG7B

Plus Code: 9C8R5W5P+HF

Entry Name: Wemyss Parish Church And War Memorial, Main Street, East Wemyss

Listing Name: East Wemyss, Main Street, St Mary's By-the-Sea (Former Parish Church) Including Boundary Walls, Gatepiers and Gates

Listing Date: 11 December 1972

Category: B

Source: Historic Scotland

Source ID: 350504

Historic Scotland Designation Reference: LB16704

Building Class: Cultural

Also known as: East Wemyss, Main Street, Wemyss Parish Church And War Memorial

ID on this website: 200350504

Location: Wemyss

County: Fife

Electoral Ward: Buckhaven, Methil and Wemyss Villages

Parish: Wemyss

Traditional County: Fife

Tagged with: Church building

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Probably 1528; transeptal N and S aisles 1659; bellcote dated 1693; reworked by Robert Burn, 1810-11; crowstepped hall to NE dated 1928; converted to recording studio and house, 1985. Cruciform-plan, crowstepped former church with birdcage bellcote and Gothic and Tudor details. Harled with ashlar dressings. Round-arched door; traceried windows; blind quatrefoils; hoodmoulds; stone transoms and mullions.

N (ENTRANCE) ELEVATION: broad, cross-finialled gable to right of centre with door and flanking bipartite windows at ground, hoodmoulded, 8-light transomed and mullioned window at 2nd stage with quatrefoil immediately above. Lower gable of hall to left with door to centre and windows in flanking bays.

E ELEVATION: single bay chancel projecting to centre with blocked round-arched door below hoodmoulded 6-light transomed and mullioned window, with oculus immediately above; return to left with bipartite windows to 1st and 2nd stages (that to ground blocked) at left, moulded panel to left and traceried window with 2 ogee-headed lights (blocked) to right of chancel projection; return to right with stone forestair leading to loft entrance in re-entrant angle. Recessed face to left of centre with large 4-light transomed and mullioned window (lower lights blocked) to right. Later hall with wide 4-light window projecting from recessed face to right of centre.

S ELEVATION: broad gable with blocked door flanked by bipartite windows to ground, and hoodmoulded 8-light transomed and mullioned window with quatrefoil immediately above in gablehead.

W ELEVATION: advanced gable to centre corbelled in over 1st stage; hoodmoulded, pointed-arch, traceried window (blocked) to 2nd stage and birdcage bellcote in gablehead; small bipartite window (blocked) on return to right, and similar window (also blocked) with adjacent door to right on return to left. Hoodmoulded, 4-light transomed and mullioned window to each flanking recessed face, that to right with lower lights blocked, and that to left with lower right light blocked.

Multi-pane leaded glazing to transomed windows including some upper lights of blocked windows, except E elevation (centre and right bays) with plate glass glazing in modern windows. Grey slates. Ashlar-coped skews.

INTERIOR: not seen 1998.

BOUNDARY WALLS, GATEPIERS AND GATES: ashlar-coped rubble boundary walls with square-section coped harled gatepiers and iron gates with arch.

Statement of Interest

Ecclesiastical building no longer is use as such. Originally rectangular in plan, the church was probably virtually rebuilt in 1528, with further upgrading in 1792 and 181O. After the Reformation the chancel became the Wemyss Aisle, at which time the round-arched door was probably added. The Robert Burn alterations included the addition of rectangular Tudor windows and probably the hoodmould over the W window. The Fife Free Press reported in 1893 that "after extensive repair and complete beautifying" Wemyss Parish Church was re-opened. The expense for this work was met by Mr Wemyss of Wemyss Castle, and Mr Tod was Clerk of Works. Until recently the bellcote had a weathervane in the shape of a swan (the Wemyss crest). The graveyard is listed separately, category 'B'.

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