Church Recorders within NADFAS are volunteers who explore the churches of our region and make a record of their contents, to help with the preservation of the artistic heritage in our places of worship. Furnishings and fittings, monuments, tablets and records (cradle rolls and such) are described in detail and their history researched. The final report, complete with photographs and drawings is then presented to the church, and copies are sent to various institutions, such as the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, and in Scotland, the head office of the Church of Scotland in Edinburgh.
In 2011 reports on Dursideer church, the ducal church of the Buccleuch family were completed, and presented in a special church ceremony to both the church congregation and to the Duke of Buccleuch.
Dursideer church is a particularly fine building, dating in parts from the 17th century, being built for the Queensberry family. Of especial note are the Queeensberry Marbles in the mausoleum – the Queensberry line ended with the death of Douglas, Duke of Queensberry, when the estate fell to the Scotts of Buccleuch.
Currently the small team of Church Recorders are working on the records of the Kirkmahoe Parish Church at Kirkton. This church has been in existence, in various guises, since as early as the 1300s, and was probably founded by St. Kentigern, also known as Mungo. From 1429 onwards, the Stewarts, barons of Dalswinton granted the endowment of Kirkmahoe to the episcopal See of Glasgow, and from that time until the Reformation the rector was usually the younger son of the Dalswinton family. The Barony of Dalswinton survived the reformation, but the Bishopric of Glasgow did not.
In 1822 the Laird of Dalswinton with other heritors commissioned the building of the present church, designed and built by Walter Newall of Dumfries, and it was completed and dedicated in 1823. Since then the building has been renovated three times, lastly in 1966, when the magnificent east window was installed.
Work on this recording is well under way, and should be finished this year (2015), after which we intend to begin the recording of the “Tin Church” at Dalswinton.