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Return to Welcome to Fife Burntisland Parish Church

Burntisland Parish Church

Burntisland Parish Church was constructed in 1594-6 and was one of the first post-Reformation churches built in ScotlandThe church building has undergone many alterations and additions over its lifetime. It has a large central tower and is at the top of a hill and would therefore have been highly visible, serving as both a landmark and a navigational beacon.

The church is built on a square plan, unique in Scotland, with people sitting on all four sides of the church, with the pulpit and communion table in the centre of the church.

At the southern end there is a stone stairway known as the Sailors' Stair. The stair leads up to the gallery level, which gave access to the Sailors' Loft in the south east corner of the gallery. This allowed the sailors to leave the service if required to catch the tide. 

The General Assembly of the Church of Scotland met here in 1601 and proposed to King James VI that a new English translation of the Bible would make the Scriptures more accessible to the people and this was approved. In time this was published as the King James or Authorised Version of the Bible.  

The church is open for visitors during June, July and August, 2pm-4pm Monday to Friday.

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