I took a very interesting phone call this month from Mrs Bridget Lindsay of the Tayside Church Recorders asking about a contract she thinks we completed in 1927. The contract was for the manufacture and installation of pews and a pulpit in St. Bean’s Church, in Fowlis Wester. It is an amazing piece of work and the Church itself has a Pictish standing stone dating to the eighth century.
Below is the email I then received from Bridget.
Dear Mr. Morris,
It was very good to speak to you today and I have e-mailed you a number of photographs from the church: Choir pews north and south, Nave pews looking west – 38 in total- nave pews detail, the lectern and the pulpit. We do not know whether the pulpit was a separate commission from a different craftsman as it was paid for by one family. The photographs are copyright to NADFAS.
Your company name features in a list of tradesmen given to the Kirk Session by the architect, Jeffrey Waddell of Waddell and Young, Glasgow 30.1.1927. The builder was W. S. Gordon, Auchterarder, and the slater, plumber, plasterer, John Irvine, Glasgow. Maybe these were firms with whom your company might have worked?
In the accounts published in the Strathearn Herald 18.2.1928 the Joiner was paid £975 and a cabinet maker £393.
Now that we have found this information I will contact the Treasurer and find out if there is any record of the names to whom payments were made, and information as to the work for which they were paid, which may indicate what exactly your firm did. When writing our Records, we are not allowed to guess, so I need definite information. There is similar wood and joinery for a new inner vestibule. They also put a new roof on the church and it is lined with wood, perhaps by them. It would have been a major commission.
It would be very interesting if your father has any information. I am afraid he will be saying “I told you so” with regard to the destruction of all the old records!
If you would like to visit the church it is open every day as there are some ancient Pictish Christian carved stones inside.
I will be in touch if I find out more…
This video is of the beautiful interior of St. Bean’s Church.