Kelso Country Churches linked with Kelso Old and Sprouston

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A Brief History...

roxburgh churchIt's thought that the first church in Roxburgh was built in the 12th century.  Evidence for this consists, in part, in the discovery of a late 12th century free standing moulded cross.  The remains of this cross are located by the north wall of the church beside the main doorway.   Records show that Helias,1190-1232, was parson of Old ‘Rokesburg’; and Thomas is mentioned in 1357 as being rector of Old ‘Roxbourch.  The first minister of Roxburgh Parish Church following the reformation in 1560 was James Beaton.

The present church contains a number of stone blocks that are thought to come from the previous church building.  In particular there are three memorial stones built into the north wall one, with a skull and hourglass, is dedicated to the Roxburgh minister William Weymes who died in 1652.

The current church was built in 1752.  At this time the 1st Duke of Roxburghe was the principal heritor of the parish and contributed considerably to the cost of constructing the church.  It is interesting to note that the Duke’s coat of arms contains thirteen unicorn heads which probably explains why the weather vane on the church is in the form of a unicorn.  There is internal evidence that local major benefactors have supported the church over the centuries.  It includes two fine decorative shields on the gallery and family initials on selected pews.

The current church was enlarged in 1828 with the addition of galleries in the east and west wings reached by external stairways.  Thereafter, in 1878, the north aisle containing the vestibule, vestry and north gallery was built in such a way as to enclose the staircases leading up to the east and west galleries.  The pulpit was reconstructed and completed in 1932.

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Kelso Country Churches (Church of Scotland), Charity SC000958
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