Church of Scotland

An autumn view

Some key dates:

1560In the reign of Mary, Queen of Scots, Alexander Pedder was appointed vicar
1670A new church was built “under Episcopalian rule”, probably on the site of the previous church
1711A Presbyterian minister, Rev, Alexander McBean was appointed, but Sir Kenneth Mackenzie of Scatwell and other landed gentry, being Episcopalians, led opposition to him and would not allow him access to the church. He had to be ordained and inducted at Rosemarkie.
1792The church was enlarged, “giving accommodation for 600”
1822Manse for the church was built
1870-1872New Victorian Gothic design church built (the current building), with a striking octagonal belfry and spire, on the site of the previous church
1896Church hall built
1967Rev. Finlay Macleod was appointed. He was the last minister for Avoch parish. When he retired, the church linked with Fortrose and Rosemarkie.

In the church are some important relics.

A “sacrament house” or cupboard formerly used to hold communion wine for the sick. It may have come from the Lady Chapel in Ormond Castle, or could have been gifted by Abbot Reid of Kinloss Abbey in the early 16th century.

The church bell, which may have come from Fortrose Cathedral. There is a legend that when Cromwell’s forces were taking material from the Cathedral to Inverness, there was a storm and the bell was washed overboard. It was later dredged up in a fisherman’s net. On the bell is inscribed “MINE NAME IS ANNA”