East Church, Dunfermline

National Grid Reference (NGR): NT 12700 86300, map


Nightingale Place

Also known as:

  • East Church of Scotland


A new Church of Scotland congregation was established in east Dunfermline in 2003 to serve the growing population and new housing estates in the Dulock area of the city. This new congregation had no fixed meeting place for the first several years and they met in various venues, including Duloch Leisure Centre, a conference centre and even a bus. A purpose-built church was needed and funds and a location were found.  In April 2012 the congregation moved into the newly-constructed East Church in Nightingale Place. It was built on open ground above a residential road and has a large parking area to the rear. The large complex of Duloch schools and library are a short distance along the road to the east and there is parkland to the north and extensive modern housing to the south, east and west.

J Dowling 2017

Description (exterior)

East Church is a prominent, modern and large building, and a striking design for a place of worship. It is a steel-framed structure with tall walls of stone and glass, a gently-curving metal roof and a large entrance vestibule.  

The principal elevation is the street-facing south face, which contains the main entrance into the church complex. Stairs provide access from street level and there is access from the surrounding car park. The south wall is dominated by glass and steel, from ground level to the roof, to make maximum use of the sunlight. There is a large red-painted brick section with a large cross and metal lettering which reads Dunfermline East Church. Towards the eastern end of this elevation is a wide, single-storey entrance area, which extends outwith the south wall. It has a flat roof, large rectangular windows and is angled slightly at each end.

At the east end of the church is a slightly narrower and shorter building, attached to the larger structure to the west. This provides the main worship space for the congregation. It has smaller rectangular windows and is mostly brick built. It has the same curved metal roof as the larger part of the church.

The west elevation of the church has ground to gable windows at the south and north ends, with a large brick central section. A tall red-painted central panel has a very large cross and contrasts with the cream-painted brickwork on either side. The rear of the building is functional rather than striking, and has a number of rectangular windows and a small flat-roofed porch to provide access from the car park.

J Dowling 2017

Description (interior)

The interior of the church is very light and spacious. The congregation meet in the eastern section of the building, a single, large room with multiple wood and glass doors providing access into other parts of the building. These doors can be opened out to provide additional space that extends into the cafe area. The walls and curved ceiling are plastered and painted white, which adds to the light and spacious feel of the church. There are moveable, stackable chairs which can be laid out in rows or stacked away to provide a large open floor space for other community events. At the eastern end of the room is the sanctuary area, raised up on two shallow steps and containing simple, modern and elegant furniture, including a communion table and lectern. Above on the wall is a wooden cross and to either side are screens for use of projectors.

The remainder of the church building contains several smaller meeting rooms, as well as offices, a cafe, children's play area and kitchen facilities. These are used by the community and the congregation for various activities and social events.

J Dowling 2017

People / Organisations:

Church of Scotlanddenomination


  • Church: built (2012)

Archive References:

Scottish Church Heritage Research Archive - Offline databaseReference: Site number 10665