The Friends Of Loudoun Kirk were the driving force behind the work of the partial restoration of Loudoun Kirk, and to keep members informed of our progress, we produced a Newsletter.
Even in 1998 technology wasn’t quite what it is now and the operating system on our computer we had, thanks to grant aid from Awards For All, was Windows 98. However technology almost gallops and gradually we were able to improve on the newsletters by adding photographs. We continued throughout the work on the kirk, expecting that when our work was complete, then we would quietly retire into the background.
Life at Loudoun Kirk didn’t finish with building work, but we carried on, raising funds to improve the surroundings. Damage to the gates, thanks to a lorry reversing into them and the owner denying all knowledge meant we couldn’t rest, so funds were raised, including a contribution from Lady Barbara, the Countess of Loudoun at that time.
The parapet of the bridge to the entrance of the kirk was the next to need attention and we had the bridge repaired. The burn (stream) which runs past the kirk was slowly eroding the walls of the area outside the gates which was used as a car park. Again we managed to raise funds to make it secure. Then we turned out attention to the burial ground itself. As an ancient burial ground, it is round and raised and during wet weather (which we get a lot of), the ground is slippy and concerns for visitors, gave us the idea of fitting steps to the steepest access.
Work on the kirk has continued throughout the following years, mainly repairs thanks to vandals. The lead on the roof has been stolen twice with another failed attempt. We have resolved that problem with using an artificial lead, something we were unable to do for 10 years whilst overseen by Historic Scotland.
We have joined the age of technology and information on our work, past and present, can be found on WordPress and on our Facebook page,
You can follow our progress of previous years through the years through our newsletters.
1999 (Mar): Funding applications applied for. Ghost Walk, Galston Church Big Event. Astronomy Night planned.
2000( Mar) Heritage Lottery Fund Grand awarded. Website launched. Members Night, AGM date.
2001 (Apr): Work on project delayed. Appeal for information of lost gravestones. New website to replace first site. Mediaeval recipe for Leeks and Sops in Wine. Madeleine and Jim tie the knot in February this year.
2001 (Dec): Work on kirk starts, graveyard survey takes place. Recipe for Clootie Dumpling. Notables in the kirkyard – George Fulton and Helen Parker. Doors Open Day, Silent Auction. Ceilidh
2002 (Oct ): Work on kirk nearing completion. The Rainbow by Lady Flora, Gravestone records. Lady Barbara dies. 750 years of Christianity celebration by Galston church. Mediaeval Fayre, Monks walk from Fail Monestery. Face painting at Newmilns agricultural show. Paths network to include Loudoun Kirk. History Fair at Troon. Gravestone information.
2003 (Apr) : Redidcation service. New history of Loudoun kirk researched by Alistair Hendry. Bridge parapet rebuilt. Recipe for FOLK pudding. Lady Barbara’s obituary. Day trip to Mount Stuart announced.
2003 (Oct) Council to test stability of gravestones. Visit to kirk by psychic councilor and report by Keith Roberts. Family history day at kirk. Mediaeval Fayre. Stories from kirkyard, John Campbell.
2004 (Jun): Michael, Earl of Loudoun visits kirk. FOLK speaker at graveyard conference in Edinburgh. Recipe, Hot beetroot salad, New committee anounced.
2005 (Spring): Gravestone stolen, Review of the journey through restoration. Recipe for Venison pie. Brick built building in kirkyard investigated. Gift Aid reminder from treasurer.
2007 (May): Announcing death of Lady Edith and Major John Young, both of our associate patrons. Britt (membership secy) married Ewen Sutcliffe in 2006. Susan and Aaron, two of our strongest supporters and web masters, moved to Cheshire. New associate patrons welcomed. Members evening. Galston church Easter service at Kirk.
2007 (Nov): Britt and Emma, first Christening in the kirk. Michael, Earl of Loudoun to remarry. New genealogy wikipaedia site launched. Genealogy requests.
2008 (Apr): New burn wall built. John Sharp bio. Spotlight on artists. Kirkyard notables, Rev. Hamilton Moore and Eleanore Allan Moore, Belgian SAS paratroopers to visit kirk. Walking festival.
2009 (Mar): First marriage in kirk. Death of Sheena Williams, daughter of Lady Jean. Places of inspiration. Letter by Rev. Norman McLeod regarding Newmilns. Hidden graves show in snow. Members meeting in Loudoun Hall, Ayr. History Fair, Troon.
2010 (Jul): Marriage of John Kerr (son of Lady Jean) and Margaret Hannah, GeneraL regular events announced. New website launched. Kirkyard notables, John Douglas and Ailsa Tanner. Review of organisation to date.
2011 (Apr): Old photo of Lady Flora’s obilisk, Lost family photos from Loudoun Castle. Theft of lead from roof.
2012 (Mar): Attempted theft of lead from roof again. Diary of events. Local notables, Tommy Raeburn, the Ayrshire Hermit. Doors Open Day.
2012 (Dec): Launch of two new books on the histories of Loudoun Kirk and Loudoun Church.
2013(Jul): Death of Michael, Earl of Loudoun, New Earl, Simon becomes our patron. Simon’s bio. Thieves strike again. Local notable, Mary Boyd (Mrs Thomson). Diary of events.