About Us

14 October 2019

£35,000 boost for project to repair Howmore Church

Historic Environment Scotland has provided funding to support the conservation of the 19th century church

a plain-looking whitewashed church with slate roof

We have awarded £35,000 to The Church of Scotland for repairs to the historic Howmore Church on South Uist.

The funding has been awarded as part of our Historic Environment Repair Grant programme and is the first grant for a place of worship which has been accepted outwith HES’ previous partnership with Heritage Lottery Fund.

The Historic Environment Repair Grant programme supports repairs to buildings or ancient monuments which are of special architectural, historic or archaeological significance across Scotland, with a separate batch of funding being available for Places of Worship.

The funding will support works to make the B-listed church wind and watertight, following considerable wear and tear to the building from wind, salt and weather damage given its highly rural and exposed Hebridean coastal location.

Gail Williamson, Grants Operations Manager at HES, said:

“Howmore Church is a fantastic example of a rural parish church designed before the Disruption of 1843 which has been largely unaltered and retains many of its interior fittings and fixtures.

The refurbishment will help to preserve the historic church for generations to come and we’re pleased to support this project with funding from our Historic Environment Repair Grant.”

Isabel MacDonald, Congregational Treasurer of South Uist Church of Scotland, said:

Howmore Church, constructed in 1858 by local craftsmen, was the first Protestant church on the Isle of South Uist.

"It is located in an archaeologically sensitive and special area of conservation which functioned as the islands ecclesiastical centre for at least 1400 years and was the most important religious site in the Western Isles during the Middle Ages."

“This grant from HES is the final instalment in our funding package which will allow the renovation and restoration works to begin.”

The Historic Environment Repair Grant programme offers grants from £10,000 to £500,000 to support conservation-standard repair projects across Scotland which secure the original fabric of historic buildings and ancient monuments using traditional materials and skills.

Applications for Historic Environment Repair Grants are open throughout the year and are considered in three batches. The next closing date is Tuesday 31 December.

Find out more about HES grants

About Historic Environment Scotland (HES)

  • We are the lead public body charged with caring for, protecting and promoting the historic environment. We will lead on delivering Scotland’s first strategy for the historic environment, Our Place in Time.
  • Historic Scotland, Scran, Canmore, The National Collection of Aerial Photography (NCAP), The Engine Shed, Stirling Castle and Edinburgh Castle are sub-brands of HES.
  • View our press pack and keep up to date by registering for media release email alerts. If you wish to unsubscribe, please contact us.

Follow Historic Environment Scotland

Twitter: @HistEnvScot | @welovehistory

Facebook: @HistoricEnvScotland | @VisitHistoricScotland

Instagram: @HistEnvScot | @historicscotland


For further information, please contact:

Stacey Dent
Historic Environment Scotland Media Office
Direct line: 0131 668 8097
Mobile: 07557 489 322