Interior of Christ Church, Dalbeattie

The interior of Christ Church has a simple white-painted plaster finish, with the granite of windows and archways left exposed as a decorative effect, writes Richard Edkins. Most of the furnishings are the results of donations and bequests, admittedly more appropriate to a larger congregation than now makes use of the building. The oldest item is definitely the Font, a simple hexagonal basin of polished granite on a pedestal and a stepped base. Whilst evidence is slight, the Font may have been an 1870s gift from Shearers’ granite polishing yard. Certainly, it links the founders of Christ Church to the baptisms of future worshippers.

The next oldest item of furniture is probably the 1887 wooden lectern, presented to the Church by a former Dalbeattie resident, Thomas Walton Campbell, then Churchwarden of All Saints’ Episcopal Church in the Swiss town of Vevey, Lake Geneva. Whilst there has been an organ in the Church since 1882, the present one is a Solway Organ installed in 1960, and kept in good repair.

Two chairs in the Sanctuary were gifted in 1904 by the Morris family, in memory of Reginald Yates Morris, Royal Scots Fusiliers. The Morris family also presented an unusual Bible, a gift to Mrs. Fanny Morris from residents of her home town on her marriage day in 1865.

The pews are a mixture of 1920s and more recent 1960s designs. The choir stalls are a family memorial to Sergeant-Pilot G.J. McFadyean, RAFVR who died in the Second World War, and to his father Kenneth McFadyean, who died in 1965.

The Pollock family paid for the stained glass windows and the pulpit, three of the most pleasant ornaments of the Church.

  • One window, to the right hand side of the Sanctuary is of a warrior angel (possibly St. Michael).
  • Its partner on the left hand side of the Sanctuary shows the Virgin Mary, her heart pierced by a sword.
  • The Major Pollock memorial window to the right of the lectern has two coats of arms, and both are in memory of Major General J.A.H. Pollock, who saw service in the Punjab Frontier Force.  He used to sit in the front pew, regularly reading the lesson, and the windows were donated by his son, Eric, then resident in Switzerland. His wife was a distinguished member of the British Red Cross Society.

Two of the Priests-in-Charge are commemorated by furnishings in the Church. Special collections paid for brass plate remembering Reverend Alfred Bromley (in charge 1913-1918), and for the Litany Desk (a kind of prayer stool) dedicated to the Reverend William Watson (in charge 1923-1939). The 1947 Vestry Accounts revealed that the Litany Desk was bought from Messrs. Wipple for 26 Pounds 6 shillings and 6 pence.

© Copyright Richard Edkins 1997.

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