Our building is an important and fascinating piece in the story of the Clearances as it was from the pulpit which still dominates the main room that Rev David Mackenzie was obliged to read out eviction notices to his congregation. Then later in 1883 where tenants and crofters from across north Sutherland met to give evidence to the Napier Commission: Royal Commission of Inquiry into the Condition of Crofters and Cottars in the Highlands and Islands.
Built in 1774 the former parish church is a category B listed building signifying its regional importance to the area. In 1882 internal alterations saw the removal of a gallery and the insertion of some party walls. Today you can still see this evolution in the building as a faint line runs around the main room and the rough construction of the party walls is evident.
For many years our hardworking volunteers have been working to raise money to fund improvements to the building, which would include some much need repairs and improvements to the facilities for our visitors and staff. We want to create an inviting, comfortable space for people to visit which would include an improved reception area and easier access to our collection and research materials in the form of a dedicated research room. We were awarded £7,000 from the Architectural Heritage Fund to help progress our proposals which allowed us to create a Business Plan and options appraisal. This work enabled us to secure £29,349 from Highland LEADER to engage an architect to draw up plans based on the pre-development work.