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Symington, Main Street, Symington Parish Church

Church (Period Unassigned), Human Remains (Period Unassigned), War Memorial (20th Century)

Site Name Symington, Main Street, Symington Parish Church

Classification Church (Period Unassigned), Human Remains (Period Unassigned), War Memorial (20th Century)

Alternative Name(s) Brewlands Road; Symington Norman Church; War Memorial Plaque

Canmore ID 41972

Site Number NS33SE 21

NGR NS 38436 31418

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


Ordnance Survey licence number 100057073. All rights reserved.
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Administrative Areas

  • Council South Ayrshire
  • Parish Symington (Kyle And Carrick)
  • Former Region Strathclyde
  • Former District Kyle And Carrick
  • Former County Ayrshire

Archaeology Notes

NS33SE 21.00 38436 31418

NS33SE 21.01 38422 31395 Churchyard

A Norman building, restored in 1919.

H Scott 1920

In current use. Name board states: Symington Norman Church: Founded 1 160. Much altered and with late additions.

Visited by OS May 1982

This church stands within a walled burial-ground and although altered on a number of occasions, heavily restored in 1919 and 1920, it retains much of its late 12th-or early 13th-century character. It is rectangular on plan and gable-ended (with an open trussed rafter roof), measuring 14.25m by 6.05m within walls 1.08m thick rising from a chamfered ground-course; a chamfered eaves-course retains across the E gable as an offset. Three semi-circular-headed lights are disposed symmetrically in the gable and are framed internally by a strong, heavy hoodmould, with an unusually large billet ornament. The base-slab of an aumby (originally framed by an edge-roll), which incorporates a piscina, is set within the sill of a window at the E end of the S wall. Entrance doorways are situated in the W and S walls.

In the 17th century a belfry, possibly incorporating some medieval

work, was erected on the E gable; the skewput at the SE angle bears the anthropomorphic representation of a head. In 1797 a galleried N aisle was added, and lofts (subsequently removed) were installed on the W and E. Jordan the parson of Symington is on record in 1165; the church was subsequently granted to the monastery at Fail (NS42NW 2).

OSA 1793; NSA 1845; J Paterson 1863-6; G Chalmers 1887-1902; H Scott 1915-61; T Ritchie 1951; W J Dillon 154, 1957; I B Cowan 1967; RCAHMS 1985, visited (IMS) October 1985

Architecture Notes

NS33SE 21.00 38436 31418

NS33SE 21.01 38422 31395 Churchyard



Architect: Allan Stevenson. 1908. Plan.

Plans: at Darley Hay Partnership, Ayr.

The T plan church dates from the 12th century and was recorded by RCAHMS on 14 January 2009 prompted by its proposed inclusion in the Buildings of Scotland's Ayrshire volume. The three light east window is of particular importance with its dog-tooth decoration. A north aisle was added to the church in the 18th century. Peter MacGregor Chalmers carried out an extensive restoration in 1919. The church has a veryfine collection of stained glass windows including works by Gordon Webster and Douglas Starchan.



Watching Brief (19 October 2006 - 6 February 2007)

NS 384 314 Three separate watching briefs were carried out between 19 October 2006 and 6 February 2007 on the site of Symington Parish Church during Phase 1 of the development, which involved demolition of the porch, boilerhouse and external stair, and the digging of foundations for replacement structures and excavation of trenches for the foundations for a replacement porch. Much of this ground has already been disturbed and although fragments of human remains were discovered they were not in situ. A trench was excavated immediately W of the N aisle of the church in order to install a new drainage pipe for the porch. The excavation of this trench followed the line of an earlier drainage pipe, where disarticulated human bones and two pot sherds were discovered. No in situ human remains were found.

Prior to construction of a new staircase immediately N of the boiler room, two small trenches were excavated. An early drainage pipe and pipes were uncovered. Two small drainage trenches were also excavated immediately W of the newly built porch. Disarticulated bones were discovered, but no in situ human remains were found.

Archive to be deposited with RCAHMS. Report lodged with WoSAS SMR and RCAHMS.

Funder: Symington Parish Church Congregational Board.

Aerial Photography (1 May 2007)

Watching Brief (18 September 2007 - 20 September 2007)

NS 3843 3141 A programme of archaeological works was undertaken at Symington Parish Church on 18–20 September 2007. This was the second phase of works, following work in 2006/2007. The work consisted of the excavation of two foundation trenches for walls and a trench to allow a new water pipe to be laid. All the trenches had been subject to modern disturbance due to the insertion of an electricity cable, gas pipe,

sewage pipe and water pipe which were all still in use. There was also a disused (and broken) salt glazed clay pipe and an old oil pipe. The only finds were one very small piece of degraded bone and two pieces of modern white china, all in topsoil.

Report deposited with WoSAS SMR and archive with RCAHMS.

Funder: Symington Parish Church Congregational Board.

Project (February 2014 - July 2014)

A data upgrade project to record war memorials.


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