Official Guide to Edinburgh

Scottish Episcopal Church

St Mary’s Episcopal Cathedral

Scottish Episcopal Church, Palmerston Place, Edinburgh. EH12 5AW

St Mary’s Cathedral is the mother church of the Diocese of Edinburgh in the Scottish Episcopal Church. The foundation stone was laid on 21st May 1874 by the Duke of Buccleuch and Queensberry, and the building consecrated on 30th October 1879.

The style of the Cathedral was inspired by the early Gothic churches and abbeys of Scotland. The architect, Sir George Gilbert Scott, designed as large a floor space as the site would allow and made the massive central tower and spire and two western spires such prominent features that they can be seen from miles away.

There are some impressive artworks within the cathedral, including The Lorimer Rood Cross, which hangs over the Nave Altar and was designed as part of the National War Memorial by Sir Robert Lorimer and The Paolozzi Window which was designed by local artist Eduardo Paolozzi. It becomes a blaze of light and colour when hit by the Edinburgh sunshine.


The Priory Church

Priory Church Main

Scottish Episcopal Church, Hopetoun Road, South Queensferry. EH30 9RA

Situated 10 miles from Edinburgh, between the road and rail bridges which span the Firth of Forth, The Priory Church is a Grade A listed building which was once part of a medieval Carmelite Friary, the hub of life in the royal burgh of Queensferry. The current Priory church building dates from 1440.

Following the religious changes brought about by the Reformation, the land and buildings of the Priory had many uses: as a school, a parish church, for the drying of fishing nets, storing potatoes and coal, selling groceries and stabling horses. By the late 19th century, the cloisters, domestic buildings and the nave of the church had been demolished.

In 1890, the remaining buildings comprising the choir, the tower and the south transept, were restored for use by the Scottish Episcopal Church, thus becoming a regular place of worship again.

Major restoration work took place in 1999 when work was undertaken to protect the stonework from water ingress; underfloor heating was installed and new lighting was fitted to enhance the beauty of the building.


St Peter's Scottish Episcopal Church

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Scottish Episcopal Church, 14 Lutton Place, Edinburgh.EH8 9PE

St Peter's is a Christian church as well as a community space that is open to people of all faiths.

Maintained by a team of volunteers, the church has a quarter acre garden which has become a popular place in the local community for relaxation and contemplation on a sunny day.

Dating from 1937, the church’s large hall, kitchen and ancillary rooms are due to be modernised in the future. Improvements will include a wide staircase linking the listed church building with the halls; wheelchair accessible lift up to the church and choir vestry; replacement flat roof over the link building; a new warm, bright, accessible studio, as well as a new heating and insulation system.


The Church of St. John the Evangelist

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Scottish Episcopal Church, 140 Princes Street, Edinburgh. EH2 4BJ. 

St John’s is a member congregation of the Scottish Episcopal Church. Together with partner congregations of St Cuthbert’s and St Andrew’s and St George’s West, they form Edinburgh City Centre Churches TOGETHER. In addition, St John’s is an eco-congregation, a fair trade church, a member of the Creative Carbon Scotland Green Arts Initiative, and a member of “Changing Attitude Scotland”.

The Church was built in 1818, the chancel in 1882 and the chapel in 1935.

Upon opening, the aisle windows were filled with clear glass and the east end had a window which was simply painted. However, during the period 1857-61, the techniques of manufacturing medieval stained glass were rediscovered and nearly all windows were filled with stained glass. Today, the church has some of the finest displays in Scotland, all the more remarkable as the majority were the work of one man - James Ballantine and his descendants.

 

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