Balquidder Church, Scotland

This evening, I am focusing on Balquidder Church which is located near Lochearnhead, Stirlingshire in the Trossachs region of Scotland.

The current building is probably the third church located on this particular site a summary chronology of which is as follows:

  • Original church, Eaglais beag or ‘little church’ , may have dated from the 7th or 8th century when St. Angus brought Christianity to the region.This church may have been built over the grave of St. Angus.
  • The little church was replaced in 1631 by a new church built by David Murray, Lord Scone.Some of the foundations of the first church were incorporated in this second building.
  • By the mid 19th century the 1631 church fabric had deteriorated to the extent another church was needed. This third church was built in 1855 by David Carnegie, laird of Stronvar, and remains extant. Architect was David Bryce. The ruins of the 1631 building remain on the site.

Key features of the present church are:

  • Plaque commemorating the gathering of 200 Clan Gregor members from the U.S.A in 1975.
  • Beautiful wooden ceiling.
  • Ancient baptismal font.
  • Photocopies of two rare books owned by the church: Old Testament in Irish Gaelic from the 17th century and New Testament in Gaelic Roman lettering, also from the 17th century.
  • Large bell hanging above Friendship Room. This dates from 1684 and was probably cast in Edinburgh.
  • Tall, upright stone opposite the entrance door and known as the St. Angus Stone. This may once have lain over the grave of St. Angus in the first church.

Interior of Balquidder Church, Scotland

This church and site receives a regular flow of visitors because close to the ruined 1631 church can be found the grave of Rob Roy MacGregor (1671-1734), a colourful and romantic character from Scotland’s past.

Ruins of 1631 church at Balquidder, Scotland

Grave of Rob Roy MacGregor and family at Balquidder Church

 

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