South Scotland

Creetown church seeks new life as performance arts venue

St Joseph's Church Image copyright Historic Environment Scotland
Image caption The 154-year-old building will benefit the area "for years to come"

A 154-year-old church in southern Scotland is to be given "new life and purpose" as a performance arts venue.

The B-listed St Joseph's Church is being overhauled by the Creetown Building Preservation Trust (CBPT).

It has now secured more than £40,000 from Historic Environment Scotland towards overall costs of £324,000.

The project will redevelop the church into a multi-use performance arts venue with rehearsal and meeting space also included.

The church was built in 1865 as a Free Church before becoming a Roman Catholic chapel in 1876.

It ceased to be used as a place of worship many years ago but remained a practice location for the Creetown Silver Band - a role that will continue after the renovations.

Image copyright Ann Cook
Image caption The church overlooks the village square

Amy Eastwood, head of grants at HES, said: "It's fantastic that this historic building will be brought back into full-time public use for the local community to enjoy."

The CBPT's senior project manager Andrew Ward said it was delighted with the funding support which would create a performance centre for "people of all ages".

"The former church is an important building which has served and been part of the communities' lives for generations," he said.

"It sits in an important position as it looks overlooks the late Hideo Furuta designed village square.

"Saving this historic building is, in itself, important, however, giving it a new life and purpose is perhaps even more important and the benefit it will bring will make a difference to people in Creetown and surrounding area for many years to come."

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