Church spire demolition starts today

Work to demolish the former West Church's spire is to begin today (Tuesday, November 3).
Work to demolish the former West Church's spire is to begin today (Tuesday, November 3).

Following a recent high-level inspection, and subsequent engineering report, the spire of Rothesay’s former West Church is to be be demolished - with works starting today.

The condition of the structure has been monitored over the past few years and, following further investigation work recently, it was revealed that sections were now unstable and dangerous to the public.

The council’s building standards team took action, beginning in early September, to remove the roof and take down the walls to window sill level.

In order to remove the danger to the public the spire will have to be demolished, with works beginning today (Tuesday, November 3).

Head of Planning and Regulatory Services, Angus Gilmour, explained: “We appreciate that this building is of historical and cultural significance to the community. We have worked with a local interest group for the past two years to try and find a way forward which could save the building and put it to use as a community asset but the opportunity for that has now passed.

“Nobody likes having to demolish historic buildings but we are left with no choice here – the spire is dangerous and has to come down. Our priority is keeping the public safe and where we have to take action we do.

“Ultimately the responsibility for a building lies with the owner but this situation has been complicated because, after an extensive search, we have found that there is no owner.”

Demolition of the spire will make the site safe and the involvement of the council’s building standards team will end at that point.