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Sandwick, St Peter's Kirk

Burial Ground (Period Unassigned), Church (19th Century)

Site Name Sandwick, St Peter's Kirk

Classification Burial Ground (Period Unassigned), Church (19th Century)

Alternative Name(s) Sandwick, Old Parish Church And Churchyard

Canmore ID 1679

Site Number HY21NW 26

NGR HY 23454 19874

Datum OSGB36 - NGR

Permalink http://canmore.org.uk/site/1679

Ordnance Survey licence number 100057073. All rights reserved.
Canmore Disclaimer. © Copyright and database right 2018.

Digital Images

Administrative Areas

  • Council Orkney Islands
  • Parish Sandwick
  • Former Region Orkney Islands Area
  • Former District Orkney
  • Former County Orkney

Archaeology Notes

HY21NW 26 23454 19874.

(HY 2345 1986) Church {NR}

OS 6" map, Orkney, 2nd ed., (1900).

The parish church of Sandwick, erected in 1836, stands partly on the foundations of its predecessor (Name Book 1880), built in 1670 and dedicated to St Peter - probably the same dedication as given to previous chapels on the site (J Fraser 1923).

There is a grave slab dated '1623' in the churchyard.

RCAHMS 1946.

The present church is harled and shows no sign of great age. The grave slab is still in the churchyard, immediately to the south of the church. Both church and graveyard are still in regular use.

Visited by OS (AA) 20 May 1967.

HY 234 198 A watching brief was undertaken in January 2003 during the excavation of a service trench and two test pits in the graveyard of St Peter's Kirk (HY21NW 26). A test pit against the S wall of the kirk disturbed a possible stone structure, possibly relating to the church demolished to make way for the present building. No finds were recovered. The excavation did not disturb any other archaeologically significant deposits or features.

Archive to be deposited in the NMRS.

Sponsor: Orkney Builders Ltd.

R Conolly 2003

'The Orcadian' in 1906 mentions that the oldest gravestone in the "West Mainland" is located in this churchyard. It formerly stood beside a well but was now lying down, and is traditionally thought to be that of the earliest missionary.

M Howe 2006

Architecture Notes

HY21NW 26.00 23454 19874

HY21NW 26.01 23460 19864 Churchyard

HY21NW 42 23488 19876 Sandwick, St Peter's Kirk, Stable

Dates from 1836 but this structure was built on the foundations of an earlier church c.1670-1767.

EXTERNAL REFERENCE:

Scottish Record Office:

GD/150/1890 [transferred to Orkney]

The church is described as 'most ruinous'. The roof has almost wholly fallen in and the walls are too decayed to support a new roof. Petition from Mr William Maxwell, Minister of United churches of Dunrossness and other parishes, 1736

GD/217/1130

Building of a new Church.

William G Watt has prepared a plan for a new Church.

This plan is adopted and a Specification and Estimate are requested.

Minute of a Meeting of the Heritors, 1835

GD/217/1135

Expense of building the new Church (1836-3).

Summary account. It amounts to £633.9. 8 1/2, 1839

Bruce of Symbister on permenant loan to Shetland Archives

Repair of the Parish Church.

Account: £203.12.4

Alexander McDonald, Contractor, 1875

Activities

Publication Account (1999)

St Peter's was erected in 1836 on the site of the medieval church. It was built by James Sinclair, mason, and William Harvey, wright. The severely plain church retains its original galleried interior and very tall three-decker pulpit. It was built to accommodate '548 sitters st the rate of eighteen inches exclusive of Ministers and Elders seats'. The main structural timber, including the posts supporting the gallery, are of 'Baltic timber' whilst the pews and pulpit are of 'good American timber'. The building cost £373 11s 7d, and the breakdown of how much each heritor paid survives in the Cairsteen Presbytery Minutes. The building is the subject of a current HLF aplication by the Scottish Redundant Churches Trust.

Information from 'RCAHMS Excursion Guide 1999: Commissioners' field excursion, Orkney, 8-10 September 1999'.

Test Pit Survey (January 2003)

HY 234 198 A watching brief was undertaken in January 2003 during the excavation of a service trench and two test pits in the graveyard of St Peter's Kirk (HY21NW 26). A test pit against the S wall of the kirk disturbed a possible stone structure, possibly relating to the church demolished to make way for the present building. No finds were recovered. The excavation did not disturb any other archaeologically significant deposits or features.

Archive to be deposited in the NMRS.

Sponsor: Orkney Builders Ltd.

R Conolly 2003

References

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