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North Church, Golfdrum Street, Dunfermline

A Category C Listed Building in Dunfermline, Fife

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Coordinates

Latitude: 56.0752 / 56°4'30"N

Longitude: -3.4688 / 3°28'7"W

OS Eastings: 308668

OS Northings: 687908

OS Grid: NT086879

Mapcode National: GBR 1Y.P6MZ

Mapcode Global: WH5QR.PKCH

Plus Code: 9C8R3GGJ+3F

Entry Name: North Church, Golfdrum Street, Dunfermline

Listing Name: Golfdrum Street, North Parish Church (Church of Scotland)

Listing Date: 9 October 1998

Category: C

Source: Historic Scotland

Source ID: 392795

Historic Scotland Designation Reference: LB45779

Building Class: Cultural

Location: Dunfermline

County: Fife

Town: Dunfermline

Electoral Ward: Dunfermline North

Traditional County: Fife

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Description

1840; vestry and hall added to N in 1886 and extended to W in later 20th century. Symmetrical rectangular-plan Church of Scotland church with simple Gothic detailing; central belfry with spire to principal (S) elevation. Coursed stugged sandstone with lightly droved ashlar dressings and polished ashlar principal (S) elevation. Base course and moulded cornice to principal (S) elevation. Architraved surrounds with chamfered reveals and droved outer long and short surrounds to openings on E and W elevations; moulded and splayed reveals to those to S. Round-arched openings except to lower level of E and W elevations. Coped gables.

S (PRINCIPAL) ELEVATION: entrance to centre of slightly projecting 3-bay centrepiece; hood-mould continued as band course across projecting section; replacement 2-leaf boarded timber door and stained glass fanlight. Window above and larger flanking windows, all hood-moulded. Gable shouldered above outer edges of centrepiece; ogee-shaped cap with finial to either side. Timber clock-face to base of belfry overlapping apex of gable; moulded bracket below; square-plan belfry above, each side gableted above round-arched opening with louvred vent; small octagonal ashlar spire.

E AND W ELEVATIONS: 5 bays. Entrance with hood-mould to S bay on either side; each with panelled timber door with timber panel above. Entranceway to later vestry/hall overlaps slightly to N bay.

N ELEVATION: adjoins later single-storey coursed stone vestry/hall. Pair of windows set back to original building behind.

Multi-pane fixed-frame timber border-glazed windows with coloured border and 'Y-traceried' apex to principal (S) elevation; original border glazing appears to remain to partly boarded windows of N elevation; replacement aluminium frames elsewhere. Grey slate roof. Moulded gablehead stack with band course to N elevation.

INTERIOR: long semi-octagonal gallery supported on fluted cast-iron columns with foliate capitals; boarded timber pews attached upstairs. Entrance vestibule with plaster rib-vaulted canopy at centre; flanking stone staircases with cast iron balustrades and timber handrails; 4-panel timber doors. Organ by Walcker of Ludwigsburg, 1903, donated by Andrew Carnegie; contemporary attached pulpit. Clock with original gravity escapement mechanism by Alexander MacKenzie of Glasgow, machinist, 1858.

Statement of Interest

A largely intact church in the Georgian tradition, particularly important for its townscape value (prominent S elevation and belfry). It retains its galleried interior, a large organ gifted by Andrew Carnegie and an unusual mid-19th century clock mechanism. This appears to be based on the double 3-legged gravity escapement mechanism pioneered by Lord Grimthorpe for use in Big Ben a year later. North Parish Church was built as a Church Extension Scheme chapel of ease funded by Government endowment. As such there was fierce local opposition to its construction by a substantial local dissenting population, protesters breaking down the doors of the chapel where a meeting was being held about it in January 1839.

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