Villagers in tiny Stirlingshire village get behind £40k church roof appeal

By Kaiya Marjoribanks

Villagers in Fintry are rallying round in a bid to raise £40,000 for urgent repairs to the local church roof.

Fintry Kirk has developed a “rather large” hole in its roof and the ingress of rain and wind has caused extensive damp and the ceiling over the balcony to collapse. Urgent repairs started on Wednesday and are expected to take around eight weeks.

The kirk’s board clerk Chris Drapper said: “Fintry has been amazing and, in just three weeks, has raised over £8,000 towards the estimated repair cost of £40,000.

“The funds raised are sufficient to approve the start of the repair and further fundraising events are planned such as a fashion show, ceilidh, wine tasting, plant sale etc.

“However, the target of £40,000 will be a stretch for a small community of just over 300 homes.

“Every donation will help to ensure that this much-loved kirk can continue to fulfil its role within the community.”

The kirk is part of the heritage-built environment of the rural village.

Built in 1823 from local stone and largely by local craftsmen on a site of Christian worship that has existed for several hundred years, the kirk is a unique Category B Listed building that attracts many visitors to view its war memorial (a stained-glass window).

“This window is situated behind the pulpit and is one of several truly wonderful and gorgeous stained-glass windows, which are among the finest in Scotland,” added Chris. “The kirk also has a cantilevered staircase (one of only two which survive to this day).

“Although Fintry is in the centre of Central Scotland it is an isolated village hemmed by high hills and it is not serviced by public transport. To get to any other village requires going a long distance and navigation over steep/winding roads. This is a particular problem during the winter and disproportionally affects the elderly element of the village.

“The kirk is used by the community year-round. It acts as the meeting point for an enthusiastic congregation. It is not just a place for Sunday worship. It is the host for a wide variety of activities from Guild events to music evenings.

“Prior to Covid-19 it has acted as the host for the primary school services, talks and gatherings such as Festival and Guild Concerts, the Christmas Tree Festival, Guild and Church meetings, afternoon teas, joint services with Balfron Church, film hire, toddler group, craft activities, etc.”

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Donations can be made via BACS (online). Please make payable to: “Fintry Kirk Session”, Sort Code: 80-12-48, Account Number: 00309602. Please put as your reference: “Roof”. Donors are also asked to consider completing a “Gift Aid” form. This can be downloaded from: Charity Gift Aid declaration – multiple donation (publishing.service.gov.uk).

Once completed please email it to Kirk treasurer (Sandra Smith) at: smithsandra1945@gmail.com. With “Gift Aid” the appeal can boost donations by 25p of Gift Aid for every £1 donated.


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