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Relaunched Community Centre Named After Charteris

Tuesday May 10 2016

A former church and community centre in Edinburgh is to be relaunched, and named after the founder of Life and Work and the Church of Scotland Guild.

The Kirk O’Field Centre, on the Pleasance, comprises the former Kirk O’Field Parish Church and St Ninian’s Centre. It provides a range of community facilities, and is part of the mission outreach of Greyfriars Kirk (which united with Kirk O’Field in 2013).

The new name for the facility will be Greyfriars Charteris Centre, after the Very Rev Archibald Charteris. This reflects the original name of Kirk O’Field, which was opened in 1912 as the Charteris Memorial Church.

It also acknowledges the St Ninian’s Centre’s history as home to the Society of Deaconesses for the Church of Scotland, and connections to the Deaconess Hospital. Charteris, in addition to founding Life and Work in 1879 and the Guild in 1887, was instrumental in the establishment of the Diaconate.

The launch of the Charteris Centre will take place on June 1 and will be addressed by the Rev Dr Richard Frazer, minister of Greyfriars, and Lt-Col John Charteris, Archibald Charteris’s great great nephew.

The Centre’s development manager, Dan Rous, said: “Having the ear of the great great nephew of Archibald Charteris is a great boost, as he has confirmed that what we plan would have been right in with the vision Charteris had for enabling all church members to do more for the church and not just rely on the clergy.  We have taken that a step further by making plans for a centre that will enable activities to happen that allow individuals to reach their full potential.”

The plan includes putting an extra floor in the sanctuary and raising the St Ninian’s Mission up a level, freeing up space for more facilities on the ground floor.

The official launch will be followed by an open house and family fun day on Saturday June 4 from 11am-1pm, which will include family activities and refreshments.

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Former Kirk O'Field Centre in Edinburgh to be relaunched and named for founder of Life and...

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Rev Andrew J Philip - Tuesday, May 10th, 2016

“The banner headline missed the Diaconate, whose 125th anniversary was celebrated in that building a few years ago. Glad to see it got a mention in paragraph 4.”

Lorna Paterson - Friday, May 13th, 2016

“Delighted to read about this. As a former Gen. Sec. of the Guild and a huge admirer of all that Charteris did for the Kirk, especially in bringing its women " Out of Silence"( our history. )' I have long thought that he deserves more public recognition than he has had. We met his great, great nephew at Wamphrey two years ago and were thrilled to discover this living link with him.”

Dan Rous - Tuesday, June 7th, 2016

“Rev Philip - please be assured our equal billing to all that Charteris was responsible for. The first paragraph in this piece was not ours directly. I'm often referring to the Diaconate in speeches.

Lorna - both John and Andrew Charteris visited the relaunch - lovely gentlemen who were thrilled to enter the church planned by and dedicated to their great great uncle for the very first time.

Thanks for your comments. Dan, Development Manager, Greyfriars Charteris Centre”

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