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Barncraig Street Former Denbeath Parish Church and Hall, Including Boundary Walls, Piers, Gatepiers and Gates

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

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Coordinates

Latitude: 56.1774 / 56°10'38"N

Longitude: -3.0301 / 3°1'48"W

OS Eastings: 336149

OS Northings: 698778

OS Grid: NT361987

Mapcode National: GBR 2G.GWRB

Mapcode Global: WH7SN.FZBR

Entry Name: Barncraig Street Former Denbeath Parish Church and Hall, Including Boundary Walls, Piers, Gatepiers and Gates

Listing Date: 25 May 2005

Category: C

Source: Historic Scotland

Source ID: 398010

Historic Scotland Designation Reference: LB50126

Building Class: Cultural

Location: Buckhaven and Methil

County: Fife

Electoral Ward: Buckhaven, Methil and Wemyss Villages

Traditional County: Fife

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Leven-Fife

Description

Peter Sinclair, 1931. T-plan simple late Scots Gothic style church, dated 1931 on foundation stone at right angle buttress, with slightly earlier original church, now hall to rear. Red sandstone front elevation and to cill level at west elevation, buttresses, belltower and dressings, pink reconstituted stone to cill level at east elevation, pebbledash elsewhere. Hall is mostly pebbledash with red sandstone porch and dressings. Slate roof with diminishing courses and terracotta ridge tiles, ashlar skews. Rectangular pane leaded glazing with diffused glass. Tudor arched windows.

Front south elevation: 5-bay, Tudor arched door to centre with hoodmould in advanced panel with merlins at angles, flanked by window to left and right, buttresses, further windows and angle buttresses; string course; 5-light window with hoodmould at upper level; crenellated skew ends; simple inscribed decoration at gable.

West elevation: Church to right: crenellated semi-octagonal bell tower to left with door and 2 square-headed openings to ground floor, 3 louvred openings above; gabled transept to right with tripartite window and door to left and right returns; 5 buttressed bays to far right with 3 bipartite windows and 1 single window. Hall (former church) to left linked by single bay with window; 3-bay single storey porch advanced at centre with door flanked by windows, angle dies and central pediment; 4-light window to upper level of gable, angle buttresses, crenellated skew ends.

East elevation: similar to west elevation in mirror image, but minus the belltower. Hall has canted bay to centre (originally apse), with later lean-to at ground floor.

North elevation: 4 buttressed bays, 3 with single windows, door to left, lean-to to far left.

Interior: Simple. Narthex with dado and 2 doors leading to nave; wide comb ceiling with main structural supports exposed; Tudor arch doors and facings, ribbed dado, panelled chancel area with reredos advanced at centre of east wall. Pews removed. Hall: elliptical roof with plain ribs rising from moulded corbels.

Boundary walls, piers, gatepiers and gates: low harled brick built walls with stone coping, 2 rectangular section ashlar gatepiers with chamfered copes to front elevation, 2 sets of similar piers to west elevation, 1 set to north elevation; 8 other similar single piers; set of decorative metal gates to north and west elevation; railings removed.

Statement of Interest

The former Denbeath Parish Church is prominently situated on a corner site in an area of Denbeath developed by the Wemyss Coal Company. This new settlement was required because the original coastal settlement of Links of Denbeath between Buckhaven and Methil was gradually subsumed into the Company's expanding Wellesley colliery from 1906. Some housing was designed by the Wemyss estate architect Alexander Todd in a version of the Fife vernacular that may be termed the 'Wemyss Style', and prominent at East Wemyss, Coaltown of Wemyss and West Wemyss. Although a relatively late part of the development, the former Parish Church is one of the key buildings in the area, similar in cultural importance to the nearby Primary School in Barncraig Street (G C Campbell, 1906-7) and Miners' Welfare Institute in Den Walk (Alexander Stewart Todd, 1924). The church's style reflects the historicist ethos introduced by Todd.

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