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£2million project to transform landmark Perth church enters final phase

Image of the open civic space at St Paul's Church Perth.
Image of the open civic space at St Paul's Church Perth.

Work to transform a landmark city centre church in Perth into a new civic space for markets, shows and exhibitions is entering its final phase.

The £2million project to renovate St Paul’s Church is expected to be completed in the next few months.

The church is a prominent feature of the Fair City’s skyline but has lain empty for decades after closing its doors in 1986.

Perth and Kinross Council bought the dilapidated property in 2017 with a vision of turning it into a new cultural space for the city.

Work began in earnest late last year and council officials have now confirmed the project is nearing completion.

Some repairs have still to be carried out on the landmark tower and other architectural details.

St Paul’s Church in Perth

In June the council applied for permission to replace the original timber windows, saying they had fallen into a state of decay and distress due to a lack of maintenance.

The application for the alterations is still awaiting a decision from planning officers before the final works can be carried out.

A Perth and Kinross Council spokesperson said: “Works are entering their final phase on St Paul’s Church to transform it into a public space for events use, with the remaining repairs to the building’s tower and reinstatement of architectural details and lighting to be carried out prior to completion in the coming months.”

A graphic of the planned open space at St Paul’s Church, Perth.

The transformation, which includes removing the roof of the building to form a courtyard, has encountered opposition from Perth and Kinross Heritage Trust (PKHT) which lodged a formal objection to the application.

Graphic of the outdoor space at St Paul’s Church, Perth.

A spokesperson for the group said: “The trust believes that this proposal is short sighted, sets a bad precedent for treatment of the historic environment in Perth, gives poor return on public investment in terms of cultural capital, and is a missed opportunity to generate significant social, economic and training opportunities through the regeneration of this area of Perth through a scheme to repair St Paul’s as a viable building.”

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