Restoration of Dalkeith church underway

Restoration work is taking place at St John's and King's Park Church, Dalkeith.
Restoration work is taking place at St John's and King's Park Church, Dalkeith.

Work has started on repairs to weather-ravaged roof and walls of St John’s and King’s Park Church in Dalkeith.

More than £266,000 will be spent on the mid-Victorian building to the west of the town centre with the support of the Heritage Lottery Fund, Historic Scotland, and WREN.

While the funding package left a £40,000 shortfall to be found by the congregation, members were well used to challenges like this, said the minister, the Rev Keith Mack.

He added:- “When the hall and kitchen needed modernising a few years ago, and also after the discovery of extensive dry rot, our people just rolled up their sleeves and got on with it.”

Launching a fresh appeal for cash, Mr Mack said restoration was about more than bricks and mortar: “It also says a great deal about how vital is the part played by the church and associated accommodation at the heart of the community”.

Colin McLean, Head of the Heritage Lottery Fund in Scotland, said: “As well as being an architectural landmark, St John’ and King’s Park Church provides a gathering place for worshippers, a meeting place for groups of all ages and a venue for local events.

“The Heritage Lottery Fund is delighted to be able to help with the repairs of this fine building so that it can continue to play its valuable role in the life of the Dalkeith community.”

Scaffolding shrouds the building on Eskbank Road where slates, flashings, drains and ridges will be replaced and crumbling masonry repaired during the next five months.

Proceeds from a baking and craft competition on 1 June will be added to the church appeal fund.