Normally, when the Cathedral is open to tourists, anyone is free to take pictures for personal use. If you intend to use a tripod, please make sure it has rubber feet. You can take pictures from any of the public areas and hope you have many happy memories of your visit to our Church.
Please note however, we do not appreciate photographs being taken of our practice of Christian Worship. The clergy find it distracting, and all view it as disrespectful.
To those seeking historical information about family members who may and been Baptised, Married or be buried in the Cathedral graveyard or area;
All Kirk records older than 50 years are required to be lodged with the Church of Scotland offices at 121 George Street, Edinburgh. At the time of the Reformation, all materials pertaining to the Cathedral’s life as a Catholic Church, were removed we believe, to France.
One source of information about the location of graves throughout the world is findagrave.com. This is not a recommendation, but we’ve had some success in using the site.
The Cathedral does not hold any records of those buried in the immediate Old and New Burial Grounds, however we can put you in touch with someone who can provide limited research into family members interred. This is offered on a free, no guarantee basis. They may be contacted by using the Contact Form and selecting “To request assistance on tracing ancestors” as the reason for contacting the Cathedral from the drop down menu.
The Glasgow Necropolis, which sits above the Cathedral but has no direct connection with the Cathedral.This burial ground was always intended to be interdenominational and the first burial in 1832 was that of a Jew, Joseph Levi, a jeweller. In 1833 the first Christian burial was of Elizabeth Miles, stepmother of the Superintendent, George Mylne. Information on this may be obtained from the Friends of Glasgow Necropolis.
Dr. A. Nevile Davidson was minister of Glasgow Cathedral between 1935 and 1967. He was one of the most influential churchmen of his generation and served as Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland in 1962. Early in his ministry at the Cathedral he founded the Society of Friends which was responsible for the renovation of the Cathedral’s interior, particularly the installation of new stained glass windows in the quire.
After the morning service on Sunday 3 November we will be holding a book launch event in the function suite in the Museum of Religious Life (opposite the Cathedral) when copies of the new book “Nevile Davidson: A Life to Be Lived” by Cathedral elder Andrew Ralston will be on sale.
Well-known for the dignified manner in which he carried out his public role, Nevile Davidson also had a sense of humour and this new book reveals a less familiar side of his personality. It makes extensive use of a hitherto unexplored source, the series of personal diaries kept by Nevile throughout his life and later gifted by his wife Peggy to the National Library of Scotland in Edinburgh.
Some of the illustrations in the book take the form of drawings by Cathedral elder Gregor Smith who is an accomplished artist.
The book has been published by Wipf & Stock, a publisher specialising in church history and theology, with whom an arrangement has been made allowing the Society of Friends of the Cathedral to purchase a stock of books at a discounted rate. The official retail price is £17 but copies will be available at the launch event at a special price of £9.99. The author has waived the right to any royalties on book sales and all proceeds will go towards the work of the Society of Friends.
Copies will also be available by mail order from November onwards. Please use our contact form for further details if you would like to buy a copy in this way.At the launch event we will also have a small selection of photographs and other documents on show which are certain to bring back memories for those who remember Dr. Davidson personally.
Join us after the morning service on Sunday 3 November from 12.30 pm onwards in the function suite of the Museum of Religious Life when refreshments will be served.
We are pleased to offer this new feature here on the Glasgow Cathedral website. Over the coming weeks and months we will record new audio podcasts. They are available here on our website, as well as via both the Apple Podcast app and using the Google Podcast app on Android devices. By using the apps, you can receive automatic notification of new episodes and programmes.
You can listen here on the website on this page.
The July issue of the Church of Scotland’s monthly magazine ‘Life and Work’ contained an article on Rev. Dr. Lauchlan MacLean Watt, a ‘Piping Padre’ in World War I and Minister of Glasgow Cathedral between 1923 and 1934. The full text of the article can be read by following the link below.
The recently published book ‘Lauchlan MacLean Watt: Preacher, Poet and Piping Padre’ by Andrew G. Ralston can be purchased for £5 in the Cathedral from the Society of Friends’ stall. It can also be supplied by post – please use our contact form for details of how to order. All proceeds from sales of the book go towards the funds of the Society of Friends of Glasgow Cathedral.
Former Glasgow Cathedral minister Rev. Dr. Lauchlan MacLean Watt (1867-1957) is a forgotten figure today, but he was considered one of the most powerful preachers of his generation and achieved fame as a poet, novelist, biographer, musician and champion of Scottish culture.
He was particularly well-known in the years after World War I for his entertaining and moving books about his experiences as an army chaplain. He described his role as ‘a roving missioner, with my bagpipes for companion’ and used to keep up men’s morale by playing familiar Scottish tunes – hence his nickname of ‘the Piping Padre’.
Prior to coming to the Cathedral in 1923, he served as minister at Turriff, Alloa and St. Stephen’s, Edinburgh. The climax of his career was his appointment as Moderator of the General Assembly, a role he performed in 1933. He then retired to his beloved Lochcarron where he was able to enjoy the peace and tranquillity for which he had often expressed a longing in his poetry.
To commemorate the 150th anniversary of the birth of this undeservedly neglected figure (2017) and the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I (2018), a new book has been written by Cathedral Elder Andrew Ralston and published by the Society of Friends of Glasgow Cathedral under the title: ‘Lauchlan MacLean Watt: Preacher, Poet and Piping Padre’ (retail price: £5.95). All proceeds from sales of the book go towards the work of the Society of Friends.
Join us after the morning service on Sunday 27 May at 12.45 pm for a short book launch event (held in the downstairs hall in the Museum of Religion opposite the Cathedral) at which copies of the book will be available for £5. Refreshments will be served and all are welcome.
The Cathedral Guides were established in the 1980s from within the Society of Friends of Glasgow Cathedral, for the purpose of welcoming the increasing numbers of visitors from home and abroad and telling them about the Cathedral, its history, architecture and purpose. Even those who have been guides for many years are still learning new things about this fascinating place.
The Cathedral Guides, identifiable by their blue gowns, are volunteers of diverse backgrounds and experience who are united by an interest in the building, its religious origins and its role in the history not only of Glasgow, but of Scotland. They wish to share their enthusiasm not only with those visitors who may have little or no knowledge of Christian churches but also with those whose background may be more specialised.
As a guide you would be expected to answer questions about aspects of the Cathedral, to conduct groups around the building and to serve at the bookstall which sells Guidebooks and souvenirs.
All prospective guides are offered full training and access to information from the Cathedral Library, lectures and talks. Experienced guides will mentor new guides until they feel confident enough to ‘go solo’.
If you have time on your hands and are willing to spare one morning or afternoon a week in the summer months, from May until September, we would like to hear from you.
For information about applying to join the guides please use this contact form and include in your message: ‘For the attention of the Guides’ Convener’ or leave a telephone message with the Cathedral Office or Historic Scotland Custodians.
The Great West Window in the Nave of the Cathedral is “The Creation” by Francis Spear.