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


There are no additional online documents for this record.


Date Added
Local Authority
Argyll And Bute
Planning Authority
Argyll And Bute
NR 36791 45086
136791, 645086


Arthur George Sydney Mitchell, 1897-1898. Small single storey, rectangular-plan, Arts and Crafts church of individual design with distinctive belfry and broached spire to W end. Random rubble; dark stone used at quoins and dressings. Lean-to timber porch to E; angle buttresses to chancel to N.

E (ENTRANCE) ELEVATION: gable end. Central lean-to timber and rubble porch, 4 bipartite trifoliated lattice windows, bracketed eaves; 2-leaf timber panelled pointed arched door to right return, single trifoliated window to left; timbered right return with pointed arched panel.

Pointed trifoliated lancet windows with chamfered cills flanking porch. Elongated, shouldered chimneystack to left of gable apex.

N ELEVATION: 6-bays; low wallhead with swept eaves. 4 bipartite lattice windows to left (nave); projecting bay to right (transept) with 2 closely set tripartite lattice windows. Broached spire emerging from chamfered and shouldered belfry with vents, small windows and gablet; lead finial. Chancel recessed to far right.

W (STREET) ELEVATION: advanced central full-height pitched chancel, pointed trifoliated lancet window, angle buttresses; window set back to right.

S ELEVATION: identical to N elevation (no windows to projecting bay to left). Steeply pitched roof; grey slates; straight ashlar skews.

BOUNDARY WALLS: low dry stone boundary walls surrounding church with rubble coping.

INTERIOR: plaster ceiling of mansard profile with timber trusses springing from below wallhead. Segmental arched window openings to N and S. Plain oak pews. Wide central pointed ashlar arch opening onto chancel flanked by smaller pointed arches. Carved oak communion table with 3 gothic blind tracery panels, small oak font and lectern of similar design; oak dado panelling lining chancel. Pointed archway from chancel to vestry to right. 3 stained glass windows: Christ the Good Shepherd, memorial to Revd James Mackinnon, minister 1894-1938 to W; window to NE in memory of Iain Ramsay of Kildalton, killed 30 April 1942; haymaking scene over pensive shepherd boy and stone carvers to SE window. (Both windows to E by same unknown artist.)

Statement of Special Interest

Ecclesiastical building in use as such. Situated in a prominent position facing Loch Leodamais, St John's Church presents a striking contrast to late Georgian houses planned along the length of Frederick Crescent, Port Ellen's main thoroughfare. This plain yet refined church is the first of Sydney Mitchell's churches to explore more fully the Arts and Crafts aesthetic. Later churches such as those at Gullane and Port Seton (see separated listings) display a similar stylistic approach. St John's however is a more compact example of this style whose most distinctive feature is its spire and belfry. Walker states that this church is an adaptation of the Romanesque church at Leulinghen-Bernes, near Boulogne. A pupil of R R Anderson, A G Sydney Mitchell (1856-1938) is recognised as one of Scotland's leading late 19th and early 20th century architects, having completed important commissions for numerous asylums and hospitals and for many innovative church designs, including his most recognised scheme for Crichton Royal Church, Dumfries (see separate listing). He was one of Scotland's most eclectic architects, always able to combine effectively a variety of elements from historicist to Arts and Crafts to create a unique style. Sydney Mitchell's practice made another contribution to the townscape of Port Ellen with their Ramsay Hall, a community hall built in 1901-1902 to commemorate John Ramsay of Kildalton.



2nd edition Ordnance Survey map (1898). F A Walker, THE BUILDINGS OF SCOTLAND: ARGYLL AND BUTE (2000) p553.

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


There are no images available for this record, you may want to check Canmore for images relating to ISLAY, PORT ELLEN, FREDERICK STREET, ST JOHN'S PARISH CHURCH INCLUDING BOUNDARY WALLS

There are no images available for this record.

Search Canmore

Printed: 06/06/2020 09:50