There’s sadness in Govanhill with winter drawing in as a church with 135 years of history looks set to close its doors.
Govanhill Trinity Church of Scotland — a B-listed building opened in May 1880 — is known locally as the Daisy Street Church.
The church recently joined forces with nearby Queen’s Park Church — and with the doors closing in December, the dwindling congregation will be asked to make their way along Pollokshaws Road for services.
There are question marks too over the fate of the Grace & Flavour Cafe, a community facility run from the church hall for five years — with its volunteers and regular customers waiting for the results of a feasibility study on whether the church will keep on the historic building.
Linda Hunter, acting session clerk, told The Extra: “A lot of elderly people still come here because it’s their church; they came as children and they were married here.
“It will be hard for them to lose it, and I feel a lot of the congregation won’t make the move to Queen’s Park because it’s further away and difficult to get to.
“It will also be hard for the community to lose the cafe, because a lot of those who come live on their own, and here they have someone to speak to.
“We’ve been here for 135 years and the church has always been here for the community, whether that’s through services or the cafe holding everyone together.”
There is some hope for the cafe, for the coming months at least, with an ESOL programme — teaching English to speakers of other languages — running for 10 weeks.
Linda and pastoral assistant Stuart Bruce hope that it, and community projects like it, will allow the cafe to carry on — but it all depends on the costs needed to keep the church in working order.
Linda added: “We had already moved from the church sanctuary into our large hall, because the heating system went. It’s been an uphill struggling keeping Govanhill Trinity going.
“I’ve lived in Govanhill all my life, and would like to see it continue on as a centre — maybe for nursery classes, or a venue for community groups.”
Stuart commented: “We thought we would know before we closed up what was happening, but the feasibility study might take up until March or maybe longer.
“But we’re hopeful that the building will be kept, with minimum maintenance, and allow for things like the ESOL course to take off.”
Members of the congregation can look forward to a farewell event in December, and all are welcome to join services at Queen’s Park.