Burgh Chambers

National Grid Reference (NGR): NT 23220 25810, map


High Street

Also known as:

  • Town Hall


Before 1880 the few Catholics in the town met in a variety of locations, such as a former sail loft, in the 1870s.   However, numbers began to increase in the 1880s, mainly as a result of the influx of workers associated with the shale oil works at Binnend, which meant that larger premises were required and in 1882 the area priest applied to the Town Council to use the Burgh Chambers in the High Street for the saying of Mass.   This proposal was approved, as the Scottish Coast Mission already held religious services here.     The Catholic congregation and the Scottish Coast Mission met in the original north-south oriented eastern wing with its adjoining tower, as the western wing was not added until the early 1900s.   At first the Catholics were allowed to meet free of charge, but when a charge of five shillings per meeting was imposed, the Catholics moved to the Lochies Schoolrooms in 1886 (site 10491).  



The Burgh Chambers are built of sandstone, with a slate roof.   The northern elevation is composed of the gable of the original building at the eastern end with the original tower in the centre and the later extension at the western end.    In the lower stage of the face there are two pointed arched windows with painted frames and plain glazing. The windows are probably original but have been altered, as the lower sections have been blocked up with large rectangular blocks. To the west of these windows there is a small tri-cusp round arch window covered in metal mesh. In the upper stage of the gable there is a large six light pointed traceried window with a hoodmould extending  into diamond label-stops. Above this in the gablehead there is a blind quatrefoil.

People / Organisations:

John HendersonArchitect1845-1846


  • Hall: Build/construction (1845 to 1846)
  • Tower: Build/construction (1845 to 1846)
  • Hall: Addition (1903)
    Addition of the west wing.

Archive References:

Historic Scotland Listed Building Reports - Online databaseView HS Listing Online: 22820
Dictionary of Scottish Architects - Online databaseReference: 206188
Scottish Church Heritage Research Archive - Offline databaseReference: 10498

Bibliographic References:

Burntisland Online - www.burntisland.netSommerville, I.2001www.burntisland.net