Thursday, June 24, 2010

Letter to the Gurn - Preserve the first purpose built Free Kirk?

Dear Sir/Madam,

I have thought of something which does not seem to have entered the fracas surrounding the Somerfield site, and the proposed demolition of the old council offices and Free Church.

My husband and I own Cawdor House, 7 Cawdor Street, formerly known as Ascot and Eldon House. We have been researching the house, and bought the book 'Nairn and the Disruption' by A. Gordon McGillvray. The house and Church are mentioned in this. They were the first purpose built Free Church and Manse in Scotland. In fact the front of the book has the plaque from the Church which verify's this with the words " Nairn Free Church begun in anticipation of the diruption of May 18, 1843, when ministers and members left the Church of scotland in very large numbers in protest over the interference of the state in the life of the church. This building was the first of many churches built for congregations of the Free Church of Scotland, and was opened for worship on Sunday June 11, 1843."

Coming to my point- we have submitted plans to extend the house, and the planning officer came out to do his site visit last week. He told us that our house is 'of historical interest' as it is the first Free Church Manse. So, does the Church not fall under the same category or higher? And if so, how on earth has Somerfield been given permission to knock it down? Surely this Church is part of Nairn's history, and should be preserved and used, and contribute once again to the community in some way?

I think this issue requires further investigation before part of Nairn's rich history is flattened.

Yours faithfully,

Mairi Banks

No comments: