Bridge Street Church of Scotland
The Church before it closed.
In 1843 distruption led the Free Church of Scotland to form, the ministers of each Church being elected by their congregation. The earliest minister of Bridge Street Church, Rev. Charles Thompson was preaching at the Old Parish Church of Wick at the time (Now St Fergus Church), so he left, taking most of his congregation with him. They worshipped at open air meetings at Glebe park until a Church was established for them in Macleay Lane (Now Poundstretcher) This was the old Free Church beside the Wick river.
Plans for the new Free Church (Bridge Street Church) was released in 1862, it took three years to build the Victorian gothic style building. The Kirk sanctuary had seating for over 1,000 people but it cost well over £1,000. Records show that money was raised by the congregation and money was also given as donations. The Church was later renamed Wick United Free Church after the United Presbyterian Church of Scotland joined with the Free Church of Scotland in 1900. The Kirk on Bridge Street finally became known as Wick Bridge Street Church of Scotland in 1929.
The Church congregation always showed generosity over the years. A great debt of thankfulness was owed to the Elders, Deacons, board members, organists & choirs as they made improvement to the weekly services. Because of the large attendance of the Church, the ministry of Bridge Street Church expanded into the Pultneytown area, where the congregation built the well known Barrogill Hall in 1887. The first service in the new Mission Hall in Pultneytown was held on Sunday the 2nd of October 1887. The building was the centre of evangelical work in Pultneytown.
In 1955, the last minister of the Church, Rev. Alistair Roy came to preach the Gospel for fifty two years, he retired in 2007. As the Kirk celebrated his fifty years of ministering there, the congregation gifted him an inscribed clock & pen. He passed away in August 2016.
Bridge Street Church's sign which hung under the large window at the front of the building now hangs inside the left stair in St Fergus Parish Church. After one hundred and forty four years of the Church being lit up for God, the Kirk congregation got smaller and eventually closed in 2009. It is now a furniture shop known as Jack's.
The Church pulpit and choir seating area.
The Johnston Collection
Rev. Charles Thompson
Alistair Roy welcoming the Queen Mother into the Church building on one of her visits to Caithness.
A full Church for the final service.
Rev. Alistair Roy
A lot of work has been done to the interior of the building to make it suitable for a furniture shop. A second floor has been made covering the large surrounding balcony.