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Latitude: 55.6182 / 55°37'5"N
Longitude: -2.8094 / 2°48'33"W
OS Eastings: 349120
OS Northings: 636366
OS Grid: NT491363
Mapcode National: GBR 83TG.KV
Mapcode Global: WH7WN.T1CT
Plus Code: 9C7VJ59R+76
Entry Name: St Andrew's Arts Centre (Former Ladhope Free Church), Bridge Street
Listing Name: Bridge Street, Saint Andrew's Arts Centre (Former Ladhope Free Church and Halls), with Railings, Gates and Gatepiers
Listing Date: 14 November 2006
Source: Historic Scotland
Source ID: 399199
Historic Scotland Designation Reference: LB50677
Building Class: Cultural
County: Scottish Borders
Electoral Ward: Galashiels and District
Traditional County: Selkirkshire
McKissack and Rowan, 1885. Early English Gothic former church. Prominent truncated square-plan heavy corner tower, gabled front and side elevations. Roughly-coursed whin and sandstone rubble with ashlar dressings, rusticated quoins. Oriented SW-NE. Chamfered base course, string course at sill level. Stepped angle buttresses. Hood-moulded openings. Single-storey halls to side and rear.
FRONT (SW) ELEVATION: 4-stage tower with mullioned lancets and low pyramidal roof. Central gabled bay; projecting porch with stepped colonnaded doorway. Large 5-light central window with Geometrical tracery. Lower stair bay to outer left.
SIDE (SE) ELEVATION: double gabled transept; large tripartite lancets above paired lancets.
Leaded windows. Green slate roof with clay ridge tiles. Ashlar skews.
INTERIOR: much obscured but retaining galleries on 3 sides with round arches supported by quatrefoil columns, highly decorative carved timber pulpit, elder's box, canopy and organ. Timber-boarded ceiling. Hall has timber-truss roof with curved members and stencilled painted ceiling. Timber fireplace in Tudor-arched surround to minor hall.
HALLS: gabled single-storey hall with triple lancets at rear of church. Later hall to NW; mullioned and transomed window, angled doorway with crenellated parapet.
RAILINGS, GATES AND GATEPIERS: wrought iron railings and gates. Ashlar dwarf walls and square-plan gatepiers.
St Andrew's parish church is one of the most prominent churches in Galashiels. The church makes a significant contribution to the townscape, situated as it is on a prominent corner close to the centre of the town. Although the spire of this church has been reduced to a stump, the building is well detailed and unusual for the prominence of the corner tower. Much of the interior detail is obscured, but the church appears to have a good quality collection of stained glass. Some stained glass is known to have been carried out in 1909 by Douglas Strachan, one of the Scotland's best-known stained 'glass artists of the early 20th century.
The church is built in the distinctive freestone used throughout Gala, although usually on rear elevations of houses. The stonework includes both whinstone and a type of sandstone with a distinctively high concentration of metal oxides, which produces an attractive and unusual polychromey.
This church replaced an earlier church built for the congregation at the end of Island Street in 1844 (still extant although considerably altered). In 1883 it was resolved to build a new church at Bridge Street, on the site of gardens belonging to some of the houses on Bridge Street. The new church was opened on 1st October, 1885.
The original intention was to face the church in polished ashlar, but freestone was later chosen to reduce costs. The church was built by Robert Hall and company, Galashiels. The hall to the rear of the church appears to be of the same date as the main body. However, the smaller hall at the north corner dates to the early years of the 20th century.
The spire was removed in the 1980s, when the church was closed.
J McKissack and W G Rowan were a prominent practice of the later 19th century, prolific church designers who designed in a multitude of styles as demanded. Most of their recorded work was on the west coast.
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