Historic Glasgow west end church site set for new lease of life

Image credit: EMA Architects

WEMYSS Properties has been granted planning permission to build 29 new flats on the site of the former Hillhead Baptist Church building in Glasgow’s west end.

Working in partnership with the members of the church, Wemyss Properties is looking to retain the façade of the B-listed building, whilst securing the future of the good work the church does in the community.

A new church and community facility will be created as part of the development.

The main sanctuary has been empty for almost two decades, as it was considered unsafe to continue to occupy. Four years ago, the congregation decided to vacate The Tryst, which was also beginning to deteriorate. Church services are currently held in a nearby hotel.

Subject to understanding the after-effects of the current Covid-19 crisis, it is anticipated work will start next year. The new one, two and three-bedroom apartments, designed by EMA Architects, will be housed in a five-level extension behind a restored façade.  

Matthew Atton, MD of Wemyss Properties said, “We are delighted to secure detailed planning permission for this exciting development. We have been working with the trustees and the congregation of Hillhead Baptist Church now for nearly three years to try and retain the existing façade, but more importantly, to provide the church with a new facility that will ensure its presence in the community for many more generations. The redevelopment will also provide sustainable, stylish and quality homes, positioned in a much sought-after location, and close to a wealth of amenities, including shops, cafes, galleries and parks.”

The Rev Catriona Gorton, minister of Hillhead Baptist Church commented, “The church has worked for many years to find a solution which would safeguard this much-loved building, so it’s a huge relief to get the go-ahead for this sensitive scheme. Not only will it protect this historic building, it will also ensure its future as a home for our congregation, and as a significant, and much needed, community hub for Hillhead and the surrounding area.”