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Temperance Hall, St Mary's Village

A Category C Listed Building in East Mainland, South Ronaldsay and Burray, Orkney Islands

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Latitude: 58.8967 / 58°53'47"N

Longitude: -2.9133 / 2°54'47"W

OS Eastings: 347470

OS Northings: 1001394

OS Grid: HY474013

Mapcode National: GBR M556.VHM

Mapcode Global: WH7CK.6NZ3

Plus Code: 9CCVV3WP+MM

Entry Name: Temperance Hall, St Mary's Village

Listing Name: St Mary's Village, Former Temperance Hall

Listing Date: 16 September 1999

Category: C

Source: Historic Scotland

Source ID: 393681

Historic Scotland Designation Reference: LB46388

Building Class: Cultural

Location: Holm

County: Orkney Islands

Electoral Ward: East Mainland, South Ronaldsay and Burray

Parish: Holm

Traditional County: Orkney

Find accommodation in
Saint Marys


Late 19th century. 5-bay symmetrical rectangular-plan former Temperance Hall with 2-bay entrance projection to rear (NE angle). Harl-pointed roughly coursed rubble.

S (PRINCIPAL) ELEVATION: 2- leaf timber door with 2-pane fanlight in bay to centre. (Blocked) window in each bay flanking.

E (ENTRANCE) ELEVATION: centred window to single bay gabled hall block to left; crucifix to gablehead above; boarded door with window flanking to right in slightly recessed porch block to right.

W (SIDE) ELEVATION: centred window to single bay gabled wall; crucifix to gablehead above.

Timber framed windows to side elevations; 4-pane timber sash and case window to entrance; blocked windows remaining. Purple Welsh slate; stone ridge; corniced rubble gablehead stack to N (entrance block) gable; cement skews; cavetto moulded skewputts (missing to SE angle); predominantly cast-iron rainwater goods.

INTERIOR: timber-lined throughout; timber panelled internal doors; timber dado rail; canted ceiling divided into geometric fields; 2-stage timber platform to E end.

Statement of Interest

The Temperance movement developed as a result of rising consumption of alcohol in the early 19th century (taxation on spirits was lowered in 1822) and a recognition that drunkenness was doing no good for the physical or moral health of the population. John Dunlop (1789-1868), a Greenock lawyer and philanthropist, was recognised in his own lifetime as 'the father of Temperance in Great Britain' and recognised the value of a communal effort to promote abstinence from alcohol. He organised an initial meeting in Glasgow in 1829, attended by William Collins, a printer and publisher who fervently advocated Dunlop's views, and together they spread their ideas throughout Britain. A number of different temperance groups grew up from this initial idea, each tackling the problem in a different way; the idea in Glasgow was to provide an alternative to the Public House, the famous Miss Cranston's Tea Rooms developing as a result. Similar concerns about the harmful effects of over indulgence were apparent in the United States at this time, with movements towards prohibition beginning to take off. An exiled Scot living in the US brought Good Templary (an alternative form of Dunlop's original temperance movement) to Scotland in 1869 and the first lodge was established in Glasgow in this year. By 1876, 1 131 lodges had been established in Scotland between Orkney and the Borders, and total membership of the Good Templars had reached 83 717.

Members of the Holm branch of the Orkney Good Templars initially met in the Volunteers Drill Hall in St Mary's Village, until disputes between the Templars and the Volunteers caused the Templars to build a new hall into which they subsequently moved their meetings.

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