St John's Kirk is architecturally and historically one of the most significant buildings in Perth. The settlement of the original church dates back to the mid-12th century. During the middle of the 12th century, the church was allowed to fall into disrepair, when most of the revenues were used by David I to fund Dunfermline Abbey. The majority of the present church was constructed between 1440 and 1500.

Though much altered, its tower and lead-clad spire continue to dominate the Perth skyline. The Church has lost its medieval south porch and sacristy, and the north transept was shortened during the course of the 19th century during street-widening. A rare treasure, a unique survival in Scotland, is a 15th-century brass candelabrum, imported from the Low Countries. The survival of this object is all the more remarkable as it includes a statuette of the Virgin Mary. St John's Kirk also had the finest collection of post-Reformation church plate in Scotland (now housed permanently in Perth Museum and Art Gallery). Equally remarkably, the collection of medieval bells is the largest to have survived in Great Britain.



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Founded: 12th century
Category: Religious sites in United Kingdom


4.4/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

joyce petrie (4 months ago)
Warm welcome! Excellent service!
Gary Heron (2 years ago)
Unchristian reception. Despite prominent signs saying that visitors are welcome I arrived at 13.30 on a Wednesday after a service hoping to view and pray in this beautiful church. I had read previously of its important role in the life of John Knox and the Scottish Reformation. I entered through the door and was met by a large number of elderly ladies drinking tea. One of them shouted at another saying “tell him to leave.” I was then approached by another elderly lady advising me that the church was closed to visitors. I had intended to make a donation to the church but will choose another to support. I have visited thousands of churches over the world. I have never been received with such hostility in any other church before. These ladies should have read from the Holy Gospel of Matthew, “I was a stranger and you welcomed me.”
Alex Brogan (2 years ago)
If you are interested in Scottish History then its work a look. John Knox preached there - but it has been much changed and modernised since then so not much to see in that regard. However worth a look in its own right.
Lily Miriam Saona (2 years ago)
Dear little church in Perth. The organ master was rehearsing and played some magnificent tunes.
Jackie Wilkinson (2 years ago)
Friendly helpful staff. Good information sheet showing details of ie stained glass windows, war memorial displays. Really historical. Great window to the 51st HD (Highland Division) and Flag of the Burma Star Association by a Memorial corner. Impressive.
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The castle first mentioned in 1200 was originally owned by the King and later, at the end of the 13th century it fell in hands of Matúš Èák. Its owners alternated - at the end of the 14th century the family of Stibor of Stiborice bought it.

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The history of the castle is the subject of different legends. One of them narrates the origin of the name of castle derived from that of jester Becko for whom the Duke Stibor had the castle built.

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