Bonnybridge Parish Church

Bonnybridge Parish Church(SMR778)

NS 8206 8040

Bonnybridge St Helen’s

 

TIMELINE

1857: Services held in Bonnybridge School.

1877: The minister of Denny Parish Church attempted to create Bonnybridge into a quad sacra parish due to the increase in population and its distance from Denny.   He failed, but George Ure of Wheatlands initiated a building fund and his company offered the site at the corner of Dunure Street and High Street.  This was accepted and building begun.   However, the stone gable was blown down in winter storms only to be restored by May by the masons Howie and Dalziel of Denny.   The architect was A Watt, Renfield Street, Glasgow.  It was opened on 11th November 1877.

The Gothic church faces on to the High Street with a gable 61ft 7ins tall from the base to the bottom of the finial which surmounts the belfry.   The walls are constructed of Thornliedyke stone 2 ft thick.  The body of the church measures 61 ft by 41 ft inside, with the nave and two aisles under one sloping roof.   There is a rose window above the pulpit at the north end of the church, and a four-light window in the front gable all with geometric tracery.   A vestry and session hall were built at the same time on the north end of the building.  Entry via the main door in the south gable led to a vestibule with a stair to the gallery.  Double doors led to the nave.

1878: Erected a quoad sacra parish on 14th March.

1879: Session house extended parallel to the east side of the church with arched buttresses from it to retain the bulges in the east wall of the church.

1881?  New hall opened.

1895: New roof placed on the church, and more stone buttresses.

1913: Lower walls of church covered with pitch pine.

1945: Extensive repairs due to dry rot.   Closed for almost two years.  Plaster stripped and walls left bare.

1954:  Pulpit removed from the centre and a new one placed just inside the door from the vestry.  Communion table put in the place of the pulpit, with a wooden cross above it.

1955:  Feb.  The Russell Memorial Hall purchased for use as church hall (built 1893 next to the church).

199?  United with St Helen’s congregation to become Bonnybridge St Helen’s.

FITTINGS

1877: Ornate pulpit made for the new church and placed on a raised platform.

1927: Table and elders chairs gifted.

1928: Communion table dedicated; the Elders’ chairs the following year.

Two brass altar dishes donated.

ORGAN

1931: Presented by Miss Ure of Ureallan Park.

1951: New organ placed in front of the pulpit for a cost of £200.

1954: Organ removed to the west side of the pulpit.

1963: Electric organ installed in the gallery.

WINDOW

1877: The windows in the gables were fitted with stained glass, the rest were tinted Cathedral glass.

See separate file on stained glass.

WAR MEMORIAL

See separate page on War Memorial.

MANSE

1903?  Bought using a gift from George Ure.

SEATING

1877: Seats of seasoned American pine.   173 seats in the gallery at the south end, 434 on the floor (5 each in the aisle pews and 11 in the central pews).

MINISTERS OF BONNYBRIDGE PARISH CHURCH

Feb 1878

Steel, James 1918

1919

McCorkindale, Duncan 1926

1926

Sinclair, Barty Daniel Mar 1953

Nov 1953

Ross, William James Aug 1960

Apr 1961

Scott, Thomas Hardy Sep 1966

Mar 1967

Miller, John Robert Aug 1972

Feb 1973

Jackson, John Mar 1990

1992

McCorkindale, Donald  
  MacDonald, George  

G.B Bailey (2019)