The team at St Andrew’s Church are aiming to make it a ‘suitable, eco-friendly, multi-use space for community events’, as well as maintaining it as a place of worship.
Their proposals include the installation of a new eco heating system and upgraded insulation, the creation of a level floor and new seating for better accessibility and flexibility, new accessible toilets and visual equipment.
And they are holding community engagement open events next week, on Tuesday afternoon and Thursday evening, to explain more about the project.
There will be artist’s impressions and speakers and the chance to ask questions.
Session clerk Donald Walker said: “We believe the proposed changes will benefit everyone in the community, from the youngest to those in later years. The aim is to enhance and expand existing youth, adult, wellbeing, and address developing needs.
“We want to work in continuing harmony and partnership with the Town Hall Trust and other groups, whilst also providing an opportunity for events such as concerts, art and crafts, exhibitions, cinema, soft play, disco/dances, wellbeing classes and weddings.”
He explained that the historic and iconic building is currently mainly used for Sunday services but has hosted numerous successful concerts, adding: “The building is one of the biggest spaces in the area and we believe that going forward there is huge potential to offer the facility for the use of the wider community.
“The Church of Scotland advises that, in order to avoid the risk of closure, buildings should be used extensively for the benefit of the community, not just on Sundays.”
The kirk session – who are the trustees of the building – have committed £400,000 of church funds, the majority of which came from a generous legacy to the project.
And the balance will be funded through grant applications and fundraising.
To find out more, drop into the church on May 24 from 2-3.30 pm, or on May 26 from 7-8.30 pm.