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.

GLENROTHES, CHURCH STREET, ST COLUMBA'S PARISH CHURCH INCLUDING HALL AND BELL TOWERLB49999

Status: Designated

Documents

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Summary

Category
A
Date Added
05/10/2004
Local Authority
Fife
Planning Authority
Fife
Parish
Kinglassie
NGR
NO 26968 916
Coordinates
326968, 700916

Description

Wheeler & Sproson, 1958-62. Single storey with clerestory centrally planned church. Harled with wide timber band above and stained glass clerestory now obscured by external corrugated plastic. Lower projecting sections harled. Gabled elevations. Attached hall to NW. Distinctive tall triangular bell tower.

S (ENTRANCE) ELEVATION: gabled elevation with timber band and corrugated plastic (obscuring stained glass) to upper level. Lower projecting blind section with windows in re-entrant angle with central advanced entrance with central recessed 2-leaf timber door with narrow glazed red inserts. Datestone to left with carved Celtic cross and date, "4th June 1960". Additional projecting simple flat roofed canopy with very slender supports provides shelter. Recessed lower single storey wing to left provides access to large hall set at right angles to NW with asymmetrically pitched roof.

INTERIOR: timber and brick. Mondrian-inspired Belgian stained glass clerestory. Aluminium roof. En suite timber font, lectern and communion table. Brick and timber pulpit. 51x8ft Alberto Morocco mural of The Way of the Cross. Timber pews.

BELL TOWER: 6-stage steel triangular 70ft bell tower with slatted vertical panels to S elevation.

Statement of Special Interest

Ecclesiastical building in use as such. An influential and liturgically-experimental centrally designed church which took its model from Burntisland Parish Church. Listed for its contribution to eeclesiological change, the quality of its stained glass and mural.

Wheeler & Sproson were commissioned in December 1958 to design a church, parochial centre and manse. The foundation stone was laid by the Earl of Wemyss on 4th June 1960 and the church was dedicated on the 14th April 1961.

St Columba's was intended to be the largest of three churches planned by the Church of Scotland for the New Town of Glenrothes and it was Wheeler & Sproson's first church commission. The building was subject to a very tight budget (initially set at £34,000) and building schedule (40 weeks). Wheeler & Sproson chose to open up the design process to include those who would use the building and they took advice from the theologian Professor James Whyte of St Andrews University. Professor Whyte questioned the liturgical requirements and favoured a return to 1st principles of traditional Scottish reformed worship of the early post-Reformation period. The centrally planned 1592 church at Burntisland was taken as a model (see separate listing).

Wheeler suggested Alberto Morrocco for the impressive large mural, 'The Way of the Cross', which was completed in 1962.

The manse was demolished in the late 20th century to make way for the car park which is now to the N. The church and hall have suffered structural problems for some time and the hall is currently (2004) undergoing extensive refurbishment.

References

Bibliography

John Gifford, THE BUILDINGS OF SCOTLAND - FIFE (1988) p232. ARCHITECTURAL HERITAGE XII - THE JOURNAL OF THE ARCHITECTURAL HERITAGE SOCIETY OF SCOTLAND, Diane Watters, ST COLUMBA'S, GLENROTHES: A POST-WAR DESIGN LABORATORY FOR REFORMED WORSHIP (2001) pp66-87.

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 www.historicenvironment.scot/advice-and-support. You can contact us on 0131 668 8914 or at designations@hes.scot.

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Printed: 25/06/2019 09:15