The Reverend Robert Craig the last minister of the ‘Auld Kirk’ became the first minister of the new parish church. It was built on landed gifted by the Marquis of Bute, the patron of the church, a few hundred yards along the main thoroughfare from the Auld Kirk built in 1650 on the Castlehill. The foundation stone of the new church was laid in 1831 and Helen J Steven in her classic ‘Cumnocks Old and New’ published in 1899 picks up the story.
‘The building is seated for 1000 persons and is well and substantially built, with tall, latticed, ecclesiastical windows, and handsome clock tower. The clock in the tower is of later date, having been presented in 1872 by W. Alison Cuninghame, Esq., of Logan. The dial is 3’6″ square, and the pendulum 14 feet in length. It was erected at a cost of hundred guineas. The interior of the church is light and pleasing, well and comfortably seated. The pulpit is of the old three-decker style, with sounding board and precentor’s desk. The singing, now-a-days, is led by a harmonium. The acoustics of the church are perfect. The front seats of the gallery are held by the heritors of the parish.The church cost £2000, which represented more , sixty years ago, than the same sum at the present value of money. It was opened on the 26th May 1833, when Mr. Craig preached with great acceptance to a large congregation.’
Seats in the church were allocated to the heritors (landowners in the parish) and their families. Thankfully the record allocation of the seats in 1833 survives.
Who were the Heritors of the parish of New Cumnock? … click here