Church logo for Airdrie and Coatbridge

...gather together in support and fellowship

Photo of historical interest for airdrie church

The beginnings...

In c1896 a small gathering of people started a church at Kippen Street, Airdrie. At the time it was known as Kippen Street Evangelical Union (Scottish Morisionians) and met in a ‘tin tabernacle’ under the spiritual leadership of Thomas Whiteside.

In 1897 the Evangelical Union in Scotland and the Scottish Congregationalists, totalling more than 90 congregations, united as the Congregational Union of Scotland. Over the next few years, a dispute arose in the Kippen Street EU congregation on the question of joining the Congregational Union. The majority of the members were in favour of joining the Congregational Union and the remaining objectors transferred to other demoninations. The remaining congregetation went on to commission a stone church (also in Kippen Street) that was completed in 1911 and the new church was formally admitted to the roll of the Congregational Union in January 16, 1911. The ministry work to allow admittance to the Union was successfully carried on by the Rev. John Edmonston.

The Congregational Union

The creation of Scottish Congregationalism was the result of a powerful evangelical mission led by a handful of lay preachers and ministers in the late 18th century and was driven by the desire of the Moderate Party who desired freedom of thought and action that was denied them by the Church of Scotland. This group of pious men were convicted through study of the Scripture that church leadership should be composed of men and women who are believers in Christ and that the fellowship should be free from control by external authority and be empowered to manage their own affairs under the Spiritual guidance of prayer.

The middle years...

In 1951, the church members totalled 150 and a decision was made to build a manse nearby in Martyn Street as, without it, they found it difficult to attract and retain ministers. Tradesmen among them built it in their spare time in one year for the sum of £1400. More recently, this manse was sold to allow for the purchase of a modern property.

The sixties saw a great change in the community around the Church. The old Kippen Street tenements were demolished along with nearby housing in the surrounding area. The church lost some of the congregation but was also refreshed by the many families who moved into the new housing and subsequently joined the church.

Before the old housing was taken down, the church had 2 small halls: the 'hut' next door to the Church and the original 'tin-tabernacle' nearby in Kippen Street. The organisations and Sunday School were based in the adjacent hall and the tin-tabernacle was used by the Boys Brigade and for church functions. However, both halls were demolished to make way for the new housing so a Hall Fund was established which resulted in the construction of a large staged-hall adjoining the church with kitchen and toilet facilities. The hall was opened in December 1967 and is the hall we currently use today.

In 1974, the two large stained glass windows behind the pulpit were installed and celebrated with a Service of Dedication based on Psalm 84, "How Lovely is Thy Dwelling Place". The windows were given as gifts and were "dedicated for the Glory of God and for the beauty of His sanctuary through Jesus Christ Our Lord". These windows have proven to be a wonderful edition to the building and are greatly appreciated by all who visit the church.

Today

The congregation at Coatdyke agreed to associate with the Congregational Federation in Scotland at it's inception in 1999 as we share in their vision of the advancement of the Christian faith in the UK while embracing the Congregational Way.

In January 2011, we celebrated our 100th anniversary at a civic reception hosted by the provost Tom Curley. Mr Curley had these kind words to say: "The church has a great history within the local community, and is known for its contributions and help to those in need. It was a pleasure and privilege to congratulate them on behalf of the council for the commitment, dedication and hard work they have put in over the years which make the church so well respected.”

The Congregational Federation

The Congregational Federation is a mutual association of independent Congregational churches in England, Scotland and Wales and succeeds the Congregational Union. It was formed in England and Wales in 1972 and was joined in 2000 by member churches of the Congregational Union of Scotland that chose not to join their merger with the United Reformed Church.

The Faithful Fellowship

The story of Coatdyke Congregational Church would not be complete without acknowledging the company of men and women in Jesus, who through the 100+ years have composed the fellowship of the church, and who have worshipped faithfully and served with unswerving devotion. They have been the foundation stones, which God has used to build this church. Without their loyalty, courage and self-sacrifice, our church would never have survived to grow in membership and character. The call now comes to us of this generation to give ourselves fully to Jesus and to continue in the joy of His Service.


Minister Roster

  • 1898 - 1905
  • 1905 - 1908
  • 1909 - 1918
  • 1918 - 1920
  • 1920 - 1925
  • 1925 - 1929
  • 1929 - 1932
  • 1933 - 1936
  • 1937 - 1944
  • 1944 - 1950
  • Thomas Whiteside
  • Arthur James
  • John Edmonston
  • Robert Myles
  • R. McCheyne MacRoberts
  • William Ralston
  • David W. Thomson
  • James P. Morison
  • Leonard Sykes
  • James Foster
  • 1951 - 1957
  • 1958 - 1961
  • 1962 - 1964
  • 1966 - 1968
  • 1968 - 1969
  • 1969 - 1992
  • 1992 - 2000
  • 2001 - 2012
  • 2013
  • Charles J.A. Innes
  • Thomas C. Kelly
  • William Gilchrist
  • John M. Richardson
  • Alex McGhee
  • Charles J.A. Innes
  • Peter W. Main
  • Thomas R. Wilson
  • Alan J. Muir