Falkirk St James Church

St James UP Church(SMR 122)

NS 8930 601898

TIMELINE

St. James’ United Presbyterian Church         1900

St. James’ Church                    1929

1929    St. James’ Church of Scotland

1898: In June the minister and a large proportion of the congregation of the Falkirk Congregational Church (the old Evangelical Union Church in Bank Street) refused to enter the agreed union with the Evangelical Union Church congregation and instead were admitted into the U.P. Church in June 1898.  Since November the previous year meetings had been held in the Melville Street Church, leased from the Co-op.  As most of the congregation was from the Grahamston area it was decided to seek a new building site there.  A site was secured from John Baird, timber merchant, on Thornhill Road where a new street, Fir Street, was to be formed.

1899: The new hall on the S side of the church was opened for services in September.

1900: New church opened at the corner of Thornhill Road and the new street at Firs in October.  Built in the Gothic style of red  stone  from  Locharbriggs Quarry, Dumfries (the greystone from Eastfield Quarry having run out), and blue Craiglea  slate  for  the roof of the buildings and red  tile  for  the  tower.  Externally the main gabled front faces onto Thornhill Road, and here the stone is rock-faced with fine dressed detailing.  The roof of the church was open bound.  In plan it has a nave 27ft wide by 64ft long, with transepts on both sides, which, along with the 10ft wide aisles, are separated from the nave by six lofty arches springing from columns with moulded stone caps and bases.   A gallery was provided for future use at the east end of the nave, accessed by a wooden stair.   At the west end is the chancel with the communion table and elders’ seats.   Its floor is raised and laid with marble mosaic, whilst the walls were panelled to a height of 8ft. The vestry adjoins the chancel.  The principal entrance porch is at the base of the tower at the corner next to the road junction.  The tower rises to a height of 90ft.  The hall lies parallel to the nave and has the customary range of rooms behind it, viz lavatories, retiring rooms, meeting rooms and a kitchen. The architect was G Deas Page, Falkirk, and the mason work by George Sanderson, Falkirk.  Cost £4,749.

1925: Gallery opened.

2018: Congregation united with Grahamston Parish church and church closed.

FITTINGS

Elders’ seats presented by the congregation of the Grahams Road Church on its closure.  Two lecterns come from Elder Park Church, Glasgow.  Wooden memorial plaque and communion table reputedly designed and executed by Miss Wilson of South Bantaskine.

1926: Baptismal font gifted by the Girls’ Auxiliary.

BELL

Bell installed in 1974.  Given to Victoria School.

WINDOW

See separate entry under stained glass.

WAR MEMORIAL

See separate entry under War Memorial.

SEATING

1900: Church designed for 532 people and the hall for 260.   The gallery took a further 100.

MINISTERS OF ST. JAMES CHURCH

1898

Buchan, John Duthie 1907

Sep 1907

Kerr, Alexander Fleming Jan 1923

Jun 1923

Gardiner, William Oct 1926

Feb 1927

Linkie, Thomas Muir Nov 1960

Aug 1961

MacFarlane, Thomas Gracie Sep 1968

Jan 1969

Stephen, Gordon Struthers Apr 1972

Nov 1972

Kellas, David John 1983

1983

Telfer, Alan B 1991

1992

McKimmon, Eric

Geoff B. Bailey (2019)