Please open the above title of this news. The Coldstream Community Trust is taking the lead on this project but it will have interest for this society. Gerald Tait of the Trust and the Society and Trevor Swan of the Society met officials of Historic Scotland (HS) on site on 23rd January 2015. Robin Kent, Consultant Architects, were also present. The latter had carried out a very useful feasibility study of possible restoration repairs of the kirk, last used in 1718, built in 1120 and dilapidated by the 1790s and neglected ever since. HS funded the feasibility study.
The project is heading into phase 2 of 3 phases and includes: engaging a tree surgeon to cut back ivy and ash bushes ingrained in the kirk walls; making sure any bats are not disturbed, preparing a schedule of repairs works ready to go out to tender and looking for grants, other than provided by HS, to achieve phase 3 which is basically the restoration of the old kirk. This society is eventually likely to be asked to help with interpretation of the site. HS is funding phase 2.
HS has been extremely helpful with this project and have shown us pictures of another restored ancient church in Westown, Perthshire, which is pictured here (NB: the picture is not Lennel kirk). We also have a picture of the Perthshire church before restoration and it is ivy covered, there is no hint that stone might be under the ivy. It is an amazing transformation and let's hope that this can be the case with Lennel kirk. Updates will be posted here and on the Community Trust website www.Coldstream.Co (not com!) from time-to-time.
The Trust aims are, as a result of a restored kirk:-
1. Properly interpreted site taking account of famous people buried in and around the kirk, 2. A safe place for people visit and enjoy 3. The historical context of the site to be developed 4. Encourage the local authority to cut the grass more regularly in the kirkyard.