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LATEST NEWS

First Service of 2024

With the new boiler now installed, our first service of 2024 will be held in the Kirk on Sunday 7th April at 3.00pm, led by Rev Barbara O'Donnell. 

 

Although the Sunday after Easter is known as 'Low Sunday', do join us if you can and see what high's we've reached over the winter. 

Save the Date

 

The popular Plant Sale and Stalls will be held on Sunday 12th May 2024 from 10.00am - 2.00pm. Following which, there will be a service led by Canon Peter McBride at 2.30pm.

Old Kirk Pews

 

Would you like to express an interest in having one of the pews from the Old Kirk?

 

They are to be removed so that the internal works can commence during summer 2024, funding permitted. There about 45 pews in total, plus those in the gallery. A few will be kept round the outside edge of the kirk.

 

Please email asap if you are interested, we already have about 15 names on a list at the Kirk.

There was a great turnout for the Carol Service on 23 December 2023. Over 100 people took part!

Thank you to everyone who joined us on Wednesday 22nd November 2023 at 2.30pm for Songs of Praise to mark St Cecilia Day. The service was led by Mary Sweetland.

Harvest Thanksgiving Service

 

Lovely Harvest Thanksgiving Service on 15 October 2023, led by Michael Yuille, giving thanks for the harvest, not just of food but God's people.

Thanks Michael for giving up your time to lead worship and travelling from Dunblane. So glad we had sunshine this weekend after the floods of last weekend.

PhilMari in Concert – 18 August 2023

What a great night with Phil and Marion Henry. The audience were in great form and over £600 was added to funds for interior works. Many thanks to Phil and Marion, to the audience and to everyone who helped!

2 August 2023

Following the Bio-Blitz on 26 July, our Graveyard Crew became Himalayan Balsam Killers this morning, as they cut/bashed the plants before it could set seed and spread even further in the North plot.

The Old Kirk Bioblitz was held on 26th July 2023. Over 20 people attended with a lively group of youngsters taking part in a Mini Beast Hunt with Mary-Anne, West Dunbartonshire Council ranger.

A moth trap was set overnight and collected 15 different species of moth and Michael, the Dunbartonshire BSBI recorder, noted 70-80 different species of plant growing in the North Plot, the footpath and the car park. The most unusual plant found was Small Toadflax, Chaenorhinum minus, growing in the gravel in the car park. This sets a good base line for our biodiversity recording and we hope to have a further bat detecting event later in the autumn.

Drinker Moth

Antler Moth

Looking at moths

Small Toadflax

The enthusiastic audience – about 65 people – thoroughly enjoyed the Dave Arcari Live concert on 14th July 2023. The concert lasted for an hour and 15 mins. 

A good number of his fans were there, and some new local ones who really enjoyed his music. The acoustic was great and plans are already underway for more live music events. 

 

Big shout out to Sam Newall, Honeywagon, for the generous donation of a portaloo for both this concert and the BioBlitz on 28 July. The Trust are working on obtaining funding and planning for septic tank and water supply to get toilets installed.

CONGRATULATIONS

Congratulations to Vicky Craig of Croftamie, the winner of our Prize Draw. The prize was a £50 voucher for Caulders Garden Centre and we hope she enjoys spending it.

The draw was made from a board of 100 ‘boxes’, started on the open day on 14 May, continued at the AGM and recently the last few slots were completed. 
 

AGM and Service of Thanksgiving

11 June 2023

There was a good attendance at our Service of Thanksgiving on 11 June 2023, led by our ambassador, Rev Scott Brown, with Trustee Jim Skea reading the gospel, and Rosalind McGowan at the organ. It's six years since Scott chaired the first community meeting to get the Trust established.

After refreshments we held our 5th AGM where two new Trustees were elected. Our Chairman, Willie Roxburgh reported on the Phase 1 build which was completed in April, and discussed plans for internal work.

We made good use of the large Screen donated following the closure of Croftamie Nursery School. Thanks to Croftamie Community Council for thinking of us.

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Plant Sale and Kirk Open Day 

Thank you to everyone who came along on 14 May 2023 to support this. The final total raised was £737. We are very grateful to the stallholders and all those who helped to achieve this.

A Memoriall of Occurences

The Rev Thomas Leckie was Minister of the Parish from 1703-1723.

He wrote a diary from 1st June 1718 to 31st August 1719 which he titled A Memoriall of Occurences. It was written in a small, leather bound note book in secretary script. The transcription of the diary can be read here.

Thanks to all who came along to our service on 7 March 2023 and joined in afternoon worship led by Rev Jon Connell. The sun was shining, the Kirk not too cold, the singing hearty and the message uplifting.

CAROLS BY CANDLELIGHT

Saturday 17th December at 4.00pm

Thanks to all who braved the ice and came along to our lovely Carols by Candlelight service, led by Rev Barbara O'Donnell with Rosalind McGowan playing the piano.

 

We were joined by some of the BFlats, led by Cairi Edwards who sang three carols, including an unusual version of Away in a Manger.

All the Trustees of KOKT wish you a happy Christmas and a good 2023.

ST ANDREW'S SERVICE

Thanks to all who came along to our St Andrew's service on 30 November 2022. Our service on St Andrew's day  reflected on the life of the apostle, Andrew, and why he is considered to be the saint of the rank and file.   Mary Sweetland had planned to lead the service, but had lost her voice so thanks to Jim Skea who read the homily.  Julie Bowie had prepared a prayer and reading from Marks gospel.

FAVOURITE HYMNS

Thanks to all who came along to our Favourite Hymns service on 17 November 2022. We sang seven favourites, with the help of youtube, interspersed with prayer and bible reading. Feedback was positive for services during the week and we look forward to the St Andrew's Service on 30 November.

ALL SOULS' SERVICE

There was a good turnout for our All Souls service on 30th October 2022, where Rev Scott Brown led worship and a special remembrance for all our relatives and friends interred in Kilmaronock Kirkyard.

FOURTH ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING

 

19th October, 2022, 7:00 pm at Kilmaronock Kirk or via Zoom Conference.

 

It was great to see so many members and friends at the AGM on 19th October. Our chairman, Willie Roxburgh, provided an update on progress. Work on external repairs started mid- August, once we knew we had funding commitments of £200k. Gillies and Farrell have spent the last few weeks stripping out the old mortar and the concrete patching, and removing the slates from the roof, where we'll re-use the best of them on the north side, having sourced new Aberfoyle slate for the south side.

However these preparatory works have thrown up some major issues - all the sarking on the roof needs to be replaced due to extensive rot (we'd budgeted for 50%) and there are serious structural issues on the bellcot. We now need to quickly raise around £75,000, to get the Kirk in good state for the next 60 years. The Trustees have several new grant applications ready to go, but hope that members and friends will be able to provide further donations to meet the funding shortfall for the unanticipated additional works.

Sunday 29th May 2022

Thanks to all who joined the service on Sunday. The singing with the BFlats was wonderful, and Rev Scott Brown gave us a potted history of early celtic saints who established a place of worship on this site over 1500 years ago.

 

Our Chairman, Willie Roxburgh, announced that we are hopeful to get started on the external works in late July - we have a contractor lined up and are just finalising the funding agreement with Historic Environment Scotland. We should be able to use the building while the works are progressing over the late summer/early autumn.

 

Following that our thoughts will turn to grant funding for the internal works, and we do have that great start of funding from the Fraser Trust.

Fantastic day at the Plant and Bric-a-Brack sale held on 1 May 2022. Funds boosted by £1,288.00! A big thank you to everyone involved.

 

Congratulations to John McKenzie, his raffle ticket was drawn for Isobel Bain's painting of the Kirk.

We're very hopeful to get started on external renovations. Just dotting i's and crossing t's. Keep coming back for updates.

Thursday 7 April 2022 – Spring Clean 

Andy and Kieran from Adopt-a-Monument carried out some survey work in the Grave Yard on 12th & 13th April. Then they were joined by a group of local volunteers and Trustees to make a start on clearing the moss from some of the gravestones and recording them on Thursday 14th April.

The photographs show everyone hard at work and also 'before and after' images that show what a difference proper cleaning, under supervision from the experts, can make. 

Sunday 6 March 2022

Following on from our very well received service to celebrate St. Cecilia last November, we are delighted to let you know that a second service will be held in Kilmaronock Church on Sunday 6 March at 3.00pm. 
 
The theme of this service will be "St. Kessog and the Lands of the Lennox – a Celebration of our Christian Heritage” and will be led by the Reverend Scott Brown. We will also be marking the fact that it is the first anniversary of the Trust's obtaining ownership of the kirk for the community.
 
Pre booking your place is necessary. To book your place, please go to Eventbrite and follow the on-screen instructions. Places are limited and allocated on a first come, first serve basis. If you have any problem at all with online booking, please email us and we will endeavour to assist.

kessog-001.jpg

Please note that there are relevant Covid rules and protocols which will apply on the day. Unfortunately, due to Covid and the current limitations of the church, we will not be able to provide tea and cake afterwards.
 
Any donations after the service will be gratefully received.
 
It would be good to have as many people as possible attend and, as ever, we are warmly appreciative for all your support which has made it possible to hold events such as this in the kirk. We hope to see you there.

© Alan Czerkawska

Service for St Cecilia – 21 November 2021

We were delighted to be joined by around 80 people at our service in the Kirk on Sunday 21st November at 3.00pm. We were marking St Cecilia Day, the Patron Saint of Music, and the B Flats sang beautifully for us.

 

The service was led by KOKT Ambassador, Rev Scott Brown, joined by Rev Fred Booth with David Loosley playing the organ.

Survey of the Graveyard – November 2021

Adopt-a-Monument is an organisation set up to help communities conserve and promote their local heritage. Currently working with the Trust, they visited recently to commence a survey of the graveyard and took to Twitter to highlight their positive visit by posting –

“Great to kick off a new kirkyard survey at Kilmaronock Kirk last week with a team of super volunteers. The present kirk dates to 1813 but the history of the site can be traced back to the 5th century, to a time before Scotland became a nation.”

AGM 2021 – 30 September 2021

Great to see so many in the Kirk and on Zoom last night for our hybrid AGM for 2021. In the three years we've been operating we've had donations, grant funding and pledges of £381,755 or 64% of what we estimate we need for the complete refurbishment. A fantastic result given we've had 18 months of COVID isolation. Historic Building Consent is expected soon from Planning and we are ready to go to tender for the externals works.

We really appreciated the suggestions from the floor at the meeting, and can confirm that we are open for events. Contact us for more information.

Planning application made for renovations – 28 September 2021

At the end of August, our architects Thomas Robinson Associates, submitted the plans to Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park for approval. These include the external works recommended by Historic Environment Scotland. A future application will be for water and sewerage, installing toilets and small kitchen, and reworking the gallery.

New Grant from Historic Scotland – 5 August 2021

We've been awarded an Historic Environment Scotland Repair grant. Their surveyor has been out and we await his report with an indication of how much they will contribute. Local architect, Tom Robinson, has started working on detailed plans and specifications for tendering for the external work. The Old Kirk is available for use while we continuing working up plans for internal developments and fundraising.

Balfron High’s Romea and Juliet – 25 July 2021

We are delighted to welcome our first community group booking. Pupils from Balfron High working on a summer project to record their own play – Romea & Juliet.

Sunset above the Old Kirk – 4 May 2021

Thanks to Colin Hastie, Badshalloch Cottage for this stunning photograph of the sunset from his garden, which shows a different angle of the kirk. We're so pleased to see the roof free of moss, and thanks to a National Lottery award from The National Lottery Community Fund and the generosity of members, we have the electrical wiring renewed. We await news from other funding bids to see if we can get started on external repairs.

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