St Margaret’s Church, Braemar
St Margaret’s Braemar - A Centre for discovery, performance and enjoyment in the heart of the Cairngorm National Park
The project to conserve and regenerate Sir J Ninian Comper’s magnificent St Margaret’s Church, at risk for over a decade, is a partnership project between the SRCT and a local group, St Margaret’s Trust SCIO Braemar.
The aim of the project is to secure the future of an A-listed building of outstanding cultural value and create an asset for the community and for the area’s vital tourism industry.
This will be achieved through the repair of St Margaret’s and its important collection of stained glass and ecclesiastical fittings, providing opportunities for the development of traditional skills and conservation expertise. The restored building will become a venue for performance and interpretation, capitalising on the superb acoustics and unique heritage of St Margaret’s and Royal Deeside.
St Margaret’s will offer visitors and local people:
- A vibrant programme of high quality events and festival-based activity, showcasing the work of Scottish and international performers and artists
- A place in which to discover the diversity of built and natural heritage in the heart of the Cairngorms National Park through engaging interpretation and a tower-top viewing platform
The project will build on St Margaret’s growing reputation achieved through successful pilot events staged over the last 4 years, ranging from performances by musicians of international repute to an annual schools’ choral festival. These events form the foundation on which to create an internationally renowned cultural destination: a venue for high quality performance and exhibition.
The project will also create an orientation hub: the first port of call for visitors to Braemar, providing them with a distinct sense of place through an introduction to the area’s wealth of heritage and its built and natural environment. From St Margaret’s, visitors will be able to explore the countryside and attractions of Royal Deeside and the wider Cairngorms National Park, equipped with an understanding of the area’s extensive offer. Those visiting will be inspired to stay longer and experience more of what the area has to offer.
Supporting the ambitions of the Braemar community is central to the project. The rescue of one of Scotland’s finest churches will secure an irreplaceable part of the village’s heritage, with local people playing a central role in that process. It will also create an asset for the community, which, through collaboration and partnerships, will support the visitor economy and increase the quality of the visitor experience.
Total project costs are estimated at £2.6 million, with funding anticipated from the Heritage Lottery Fund, Historic Environment Scotland, LEADER, and charitable trusts and foundations.