A £100,000 grant will help fund the restoration of one of Dundee’s finest churches securing its future in the process.
The A-listed Gate Church on Perth Road is the last building within the West End Lanes Conservation Area that remains a place of worship.
It was originally built in 1868 to a design by Frederick Thomas Pilkington and has been held up as an excellent example of mid-19th Century church architecture.
In recent years, however, its structure has deteriorated to the extent that parts of its grounds are currently closed to the public for fear of falling masonry and slates.
Major fundraising has been undertaken to pay for the “once in 100 years” repairs required to ensure the church remains watertight and open.
The latest phase has been made possible by a new grant from the UK Government’s Listed Places of Worship Roof Repair Fund.
The project manager at Gate Church International, James Anthony, said: “The works began with a £170,000 project to repair our spire back in 2011.
“It had become structurally unsafe and was the most pressing of the repairs required.
“Once that was done, we were able to move on to our roof, which really should have been fixed after 100 years but which has now lasted for 150 years.
“It is currently a patchwork of temporary repairs, whether to stop the rain getting in or stop slates and coping stones from falling.
“The coping stones have been temporarily glued but that is a solution that will only last for two or three years.
Mr Anthony added: “Frankly, these are now critical repairs and we’re grateful to the UK Government for its funding, without which we would not have been able to proceed.
“They will ensure that future generations will be able to enjoy this important piece of Scottish architecture.”
The most urgent repair needs will be addressed first, such as the overhauling of slates, replacing lead that has reached the end of its life span and timber that has been affected by rot, together with rebedding insecure masonry. Weekend church services should be unaffected.
The Dundee church’s grant is one of 502 awarded from a £30 million funding package announced by the UK Government.
Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander said: “Scotland’s churches are not just hugely important historic buildings they are also living and breathing civic spaces.
“That’s why I am delighted that 42 churches across Scotland will be maintained for another century.”