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Listed Building

The legal part of the listing is the address/name of site only. All other information in the record is not statutory.


Status: Designated


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  • Category: A
  • Date Added: 22/02/1972


  • Local Authority: Moray
  • Planning Authority: Moray
  • Parish: Rathven

National Grid Reference

  • NGRNJ 41001 61454
  • Coordinates341001, 861454


Dated 1788, probably Father John Reid; chancel, altar and

some internal alterations Peter Paul Pugin, 1896.

Rectangular church orientated E-W with wide 5-bay Baroque

W front incorporating flanking stair compartments. Harled,

tooled and polished ashlar margins and dressings. Centre wide round-headed entrance with similar flanking entrances in

slightly set back outer square stair bay; 4 substantial

round-headed windows, slightly smaller similar centre window

raised into shape pedimented gable; all windows and doors

with keystones and blocked imposts. Shaped pedimented gable

crowns centre 3 bays, deep eaves band, eaves cornice and

blocking course 3 sides of stair blocks; urn and ball

finials, apex cross. Datestone above centre door, multi-pane


Wide 3-bay S elevation with blocked round-headed centre door

and window above; flanking linear traceried windows (tracery


Demi-octagonal chancel with similar traceried N and S windows

linked to narrow round-headed lancets by continuous

hood-mould/string course. Slate roof.

INTERIOR: lofty interior; brilliantly coloured stencilled

chancel, nave dado and cornice. Ornate canopied, carved and

painted reredos with picture of St Gregory fronted by carved

varied coloured marble altar. Carved coloured marble

communion rails and flanking marble pedestals supporting

statues. Brass memorial plaques right and left in chancel;

coloured tiled floor.

1896 raised rear organ platform enclosed by curtained

railings; plain pews; Stations of the Cross; ribbed flat 1896


Entrance lobby with centre ceiling rose of 1788.

Statement of Special Interest

Ecclesiastical building in use as such.

St Gregory's church the first Roman Catholic place of worship

erected in Scotland after the Reformation which did not

attempt to disguise the fact that it was a church (Tynet RC

church, 1755 constructed so as to resemble a cottage).

Preshome church replaced a barn used as a chapel before 1788;

this barn was called the Craigs barn and the chapel was first

called Craigs chapel. Gordon of Letterfourie is said to have

contributed considerably to the erection of the church. The

area was staunchly Catholic.

Picture of St Gregory by Caracci gifted by Lord Findlater and incorporated in reredos.

Brass plaques erected each side of chancel mark burial sites

of Bishop James Kyle, 1788-1869 and his nephew, Rev. John

Kyle, 1828-1917.

Plaque above centre entrance in W front inscribed 'DEO 1788'.



THE STATISTICAL ACCOUNT (1792-3), Witherington and Grant ed.

1982), p.383. NEW STATISTICAL ACCOUNT (1842), p.265. Peter

Anson, 'Catholic Church Building in Scotland from the

Reformation until the Outbreak of the First World-War,

1560-1914', INNES REVIEW v (1954), pp. 126-7. George Hay,


1560-1843 (1957), pp.77, 154, 251. pl.20b.

About Designations

Listed Buildings

We list buildings of special architectural or historic interest and these are selected according to criteria published in the, Annex 2, pp74-76.

The information in the listed building record gives an indication of the special architectural or historic interest of the listed building(s). It is not a definitive historical account or a complete description of the building(s). The format of the listed building record has changed over time. Earlier records may be brief and some information will not have been recorded.

Enquiries relating to works to listed buildings should be made to the local authority in the first instance. Listed building consent is required for works which a local authority considers will affect its character as a building of special architectural or historic interest and local authorities also decide if listed building consent is required.

Listing covers both the exterior and the interior. Listing can cover structures not mentioned which are part of the curtilage of the building, such as boundary walls, gates, gatepiers, ancillary buildings etc. The local authority is responsible for advising on what is covered by the listing including the curtilage of a listed building. For information about curtilage see

Legislation introduced on 1 October 2015 allows us to state that: an object or structure fixed to the listed building; any object or structure within the curtilage of the listed building; and, any part or feature of the listed building that is not of architectural or historic interest may be excluded from a listing. If part of your building is not listed under the new legislation, the part will be excluded in the statutory address and in the statement of special interest. The statement will use the word 'excluding' and quote the relevant section of the Historic Environment Scotland Act 2014. Some earlier listed building records may use the word 'excluding', but if the Act is not quoted, the record has not been revised to reflect current legislation.

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