Buchlyvie & Gartmore

Parish Churches 

History of Gartmore Church


The first Gartmore Church was built in 1790 after a petition, presented to the Presbytery of Dunblane, was granted. It was originally constructed as a rectangular building with a porch and bellcote. The building was constituted as a Chapel of Ease in 1794, but since a part of the Congregation of the Chapel lay in the Parish of Drymen (in the Presbytery of Dumbarton) , an agreement had to be obtained from the Dumbarton Presbytery before it could be properly constituted. In 1800 a bell was given to the Chapel, inscribed ' A present to the Chapel of Ease and Gartmore by James McFarlane 1800.' Later a Church Manse was built in 1806.


The records show that in September 1834 the Chapel of Ease was converted into a Parish Church having the boundaries of the existing Chapel and a kirk session was appointed for the first time.


In Edinburgh on the 19th July 1869, a petition was presented to the Lords of the Council and Session Commissioners for Plantation of Kirks and Valuation of Tiends, requesting that the Church of Gartmore wished to be 'erected into a Church with a district attached to it.'  It was at that time situated in the Parish of Port of Menteith in the Presbytery of Dunblane.  On 23rd July 1869 this was agreed. 


The sites on which the Church and Manse were built were held by the trustees and managers for the Church under long leases from Mr. William C. Graham of Gartmore and Finlaystone. The first minister of this new Parish Church was Rev. G Brown .


After the Disruption in 1843, the Incumbent of the Parish Church, the Rev. David Black, left to join the Free Church and a Free Church building was erected in Gartmore in 1847.


In 1904 extensive renovations were carried out.  The cost of the complete renovation was borne by Sir Charles W. Cayzer. At this time an organ was gifted by Lady Cayzer . Later in 1919, Sir August Cayzer Bart presented a positive pipe organ to the Parish Church.


In 1936 the two churches were united and the Free Church building became the Village Hall, owned and run by the Parish Church until it was sold to Gartmore Association at the end of 1977.


Gartmore had its own Minister and Manse until 1957, when the Parish Church was united with Port of Menteith. Later in January 1984 it was linked with Buchlyvie and Port of Menteith was then linked with Aberfoyle. 


Special features of the Church 

For a small church , the building has a wealth of stained glass windows. 

There is a very rare and unusual sundial in the centre of the Cayzer burial ground at the rear of the church.

After the churches were re-united in 1936, two brass plates were moved to Gartmore Church. One is dedicated to the men of the U.F. congregation who served in the 1914-1918 war and the other to the Rev. Malcolm McLean who was Free Church minister in Gartmore for 56 years.