Talk:Aberdeenshire Towns and Villages A
Although completed (with the exception of the spire) and dedicated by December 1860 St Mary's Roman Catholic Cathedral did not initially have cathedral status. St. Mary's became a cathedral in the strict sense only when the Hierarchy of Scotland was re-established in 1878 only then did Aberdeen have a Bishop instead of a Vicar-Apostolic and a cathedral instead of a parish church.
Structural changes to the building over the years have been minimal, most of the changes have been internal, during the 1950's the central aisle was widened by means of cutting down the benches within the cathedral. During the 1960's the side porch was enlarged thus improving the entrance and the calvary was moved to the Huntly St side of the building.
Known as the "Mither Kirk" and rich in history dating back to the 12th century, St Nicholas Kirk largely dates to the 18th and 19th century. The previous building had suffered serious decay and by the 1740's the roof collapsed. The earliest part of the current church is the West Kirk (1755), the East Kirk (1837) was damaged by fire in the 1870's but sympathetically restored to the original design.
One interesting feature concerns the church bells, after the post fire restoration the council, church and citizens provided a carillion of 37 bells, despite the quantity of bells they were largely inaudible due to problems with the bell metal, the bells were re-cast and re-hung in 1952, two years later a further 11 bells were added, the 48 bells thus creating the largest carillion in Great Britain.
The current church was constructed in 1818 and can be found in New Aberdour. The origins of religion and first place of worship in the area are noted as early as the 6th century, established with the arrival of St Dronstan the building sat on the shoreline.
An additional building was needed for the parish by the 1880's at Pennan, The Auchmedden Church as it was called was built by the villagers with assistance from the Baird estate
The site used by Aboyne-Dinnet Parish Church has been a religious site since the 1760's, the original church c1761 was replaced by the current building in 1842. Then known as Aboyne Parish Church and retaining the name until the Union of the Established Church in 1929 (then renamed as St Machar's Parish Church) the church subsequently united with former Aboyne United Free Church in 1936 but still retaining the title of St Machar's Parish Church.
In 1993 after being linked for several years to Dinnet Parish Church the two churches united and the building was again re-named to the current Aboyne-Dinnet Parish Church.
Aboyne Free Kirk is no longer used for worship, the building dates to 1859, with a simple rectangular plan and square section tower, the nicely worked stone dressings to the wndows and doors are pink sandstone, a pretty but otherwise unremarkable building in many respects. The congregation is possibly more interesting than the building, initially worship was held at a sawmill until a church and manse were completed in Birse Parish in 1844 before moving to the featured building once completed in 1859. Worship continued until 1940 (some 11 years after the union of the Established and Free churches). During WWII the building was used for storage and between 1946 and 1993 used as a Masonic Hall.
Howe Trinity Church (now Church of Scotland) was originally built as the Alford Free Church. During the history of the building renovations have taken place which in the main have been internal or cosmetic, these include replacing the pews with chairs, moving the chancel to the long wall and the addition of stained glass. Visitors should contact the minister to arrange access to the building.
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