Listed Building

The only legal part of the listing is the address/name of site. Addresses and building names may have changed since the date of listing – see ‘About Listed Buildings’ below for more information.


Status: Designated


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Group Category Details
100000019 - see notes
Date Added
Local Authority
East Ayrshire
Planning Authority
East Ayrshire
NS 42767 37948
242767, 637948


17th century tower; body of church by Robert Johnstone, 1802; enlarged 1831. Renovations 1903-4, Andrew and Newlands. 4-stage tower with 2-storey rectangular-plan classical church with projecting stair towers at angles and single storey session house to rear. Roughly coursed rubble tower with ashlar angle margins, set-offs and cornice. Harled and painted church with ashlar dressings. Dressed ashlar session house with polished ashlar margins and cornice. Giant angle pilasters. Ashlar base course to Bank Street.

NE (PRINCIPAL) ELEVATION: tower to left with band courses: raised on battered plinth, blind with door and window to right return and slit window to left return; 2nd stage: pair of vertically placed rectangular windows to front and left return; 3rd stage: clock set in square panel on each face (black faces to NE & SW elevations); 4th stage: set back with louvred belfry openings; bellcast roof with guilt weathervane surmounting. Main church to right: regularly fenestrated, 2-storey with later stone porch to ground floor centre with angle pilasters and central window, window to flanks of porch, pair of arched windows to 1st floor, projecting single bay to flanks with angle pilasters, left projection blind with door and window in right return, right projection housing single window to left return of both floors (later columned and architraved door surround supporting triangular pediment added to right of window on right projecting bay).

SE ELEVATION: regular 2-storey, 7-bay elevation (1-2-1-2-1): slightly projecting central bay with angle pilasters, ground floor door accessed by double flight of steps with wrought-iron handrail and pair of later gas lamp standards, arched blind window to 1st floor; pair of rectangular windows to ground floor flanks with pair of arched windows above; projecting single bay at ends with angle pilasters, door to left ground floor bay; window in right ground floor bay, both with arch window to 1st floor

SW (REAR) ELEVATION: 2-storey, 1-2-1 bays with session house extension. Main church: regular pair of bays to 1st floor centre with single projecting stair bays to flanks (windows to ends and re-entrant angles). Later L-plan session house adjoining to ground floor right and centre: SE (Bank Street) ELEVATION: comprising of tripartite window with angle pilasters to flanks. SW ELEVATION: 3 irregularly placed windows, with 2 further windows on arm of L-plan, window to left return.

NW ELEVATION: regular 2-storey, 7-bay elevation (1-2-1-2-1): slightly projecting central bay with angle pilasters, later projecting ground floor porch with angle pilasters supporting triangular pediment, blind returns, arched blind window to 1st floor; pair of rectangular windows to ground floor flanks with pair of arched windows above; projecting single bay at ends with angle pilasters, door to ground floor with window above.

Square headed windows to ground floor, round-arched with simple intersecting tracery to gallery.

INTERIOR: classical interior with ground floor pews, horseshoe gallery supported on cast-iron Doric columns and plentiful stained glass. Memorial window to Lord Howard De Walden and reset memorial dated 1589 to Lord Boyd. Painted plaster walls with partial wood panelling. Stained glass by William Meikle and Sons, AC Whalen and Norman M McDougal. Piended and platformed grey slate roof with lead flashing, each stair bay individually roofed. Replacement rainwater goods.

Statement of Special Interest

A-Group with Graveyard. Ecclesiastical building in use as such. The Laigh Kirk on the site was replaced in 1750, then again in 1802. The later rebuilding came about following an incident on 18th October 1801. The High Church was without a minister and joined the Laigh Kirk worshippers, resulting in the church being fuller than usual. People had already hinted that the church was structurally unsafe so when a piece of plaster fell from the ceiling a stampede occurred and around 30 people died and many were injured. No further sermons were conducted there, and although the structure did not collapse, it was eventually pulled down. The new church provided 7 exits so people could leave safely in an emergency. Only the tower remained from the earlier Kirk. Although dated 1410, it is circa 17th century in origin, but now missing its parapet, balustrade and harling. The kirkyard (listed separately) contains many Covenanters' graves. The Laigh Kirk and one of its ministers are mentioned in Robert Burns' poem "The Ordination." In later years, Andrew and Newlands carried out extensive renovations, which resulted in the church looking like a "unified whole". The weather vane was restored and repaired after a bad storm in 1968 by the corporation Direct Labour department. The Kirk is still set within its own kirkyard (listed separately).




About Listed Buildings

Historic Environment Scotland is responsible for designating sites and places at the national level. These designations are Scheduled monuments, Listed buildings, Inventory of gardens and designed landscapes and Inventory of historic battlefields.

We make recommendations to the Scottish Government about historic marine protected areas, and the Scottish Ministers decide whether to designate.

Listing is the process that identifies, designates and provides statutory protection for buildings of special architectural or historic interest as set out in the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) (Scotland) Act 1997.

We list buildings which are found to be of special architectural or historic interest using the selection guidance published in Designation Policy and Selection Guidance (2019)

Listed building records provide an indication of the special architectural or historic interest of the listed building which has been identified by its statutory address. The description and additional information provided are supplementary and have no legal weight.

These records are not definitive historical accounts or a complete description of the building(s). If part of a building is not described it does not mean it is not listed. The format of the listed building record has changed over time. Earlier records may be brief and some information will not have been recorded.

The legal part of the listing is the address/name of site which is known as the statutory address. Addresses and building names may have changed since the date of listing. Even if a number or name is missing from a listing address it will still be listed. Listing covers both the exterior and the interior and any object or structure fixed to the building. Listing also applies to buildings or structures not physically attached but which are part of the curtilage (or land) of the listed building as long as they were erected before 1 July 1948.

While Historic Environment Scotland is responsible for designating listed buildings, the planning authority is responsible for determining what is covered by the listing, including what is listed through curtilage. However, for listed buildings designated or for listings amended from 1 October 2015, legal exclusions to the listing may apply.

If part of a building is not listed, it will say that it is excluded in the statutory address and in the statement of special interest in the listed building record. The statement will use the word 'excluding' and quote the relevant section of the 1997 Act. Some earlier listed building records may use the word 'excluding', but if the Act is not quoted, the record has not been revised to reflect subsequent legislation.

Listed building consent is required for changes to a listed building which affect its character as a building of special architectural or historic interest. The relevant planning authority is the point of contact for applications for listed building consent.

Find out more about listing and our other designations at You can contact us on 0131 668 8914 or at


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Printed: 23/05/2019 22:15