150 years for Eastwood church

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EASTWOOD church celebrates 150 years of serving the East Renfrewshire community next week.

The church itself may pre-date 1863, but the present building opened its doors exactly 150 years ago on Friday, September 6 — and reverend Graham Cartlidge is delighted to mark such an important occasion.

The revered and invited guests (150, to match the anniversary) will attend a civic dinner on the day, hosted by Glasgow city council.

A special service will follow on September 8, led by the previous moderator of the general assembly, the very reverend Albert Bogle.

Reverend Cartlidge told The Extra: “A lunch will follow the service, and there will be a major exhibition of memorabilia and photographs from the history of the congregation — including the spectacles used by one of its many famous ministers, Robert Wodrow, who wrote a classic history of the church in his time and was a direct ancestor of the 28th president of the United States, Thomas Woodrow Wilson.

“Anyone who has had any association with the church — maybe getting married or being baptised there — is most welcome to come and share with the congregation on that special day, as are any curious visitors who would like to hear the past moderator.”

The church’s origins are thought to date back almost 1,400 years to the missionary St Conval, who came to Strathclyde around 570 AD.

The name derived from the extensive wood area which lay east of the Roman settlement and future church established in Paisley — put together to make Eastwood.

A section of the reformation-era church can be seen standing in the grounds of the Old Eastwood cemetery, marking the private vault of the Maxwell’s of Pollok.

Sir John Maxwell had paid for the current church building — at an expense of £3,900 — in July 1862, and it opened its doors the following year.

And members of the Eastwood congregation may remember the church’s centenary celebrations, in September 1963, when the building was redecorated in pastel shades to complement the colourful stained glass windows.