Brydekirk, Dumfriesshire

Historical Description

BRYDEKIRK, formerly a quoad sacra parish; consisting chiefly of a portion of the parish of ANNAN, and partly of portions of the parishes of CUMMERTREES and HODDAM, in the county of DUMFRIES; and containing 881 inhabitants, of whom about 400 are in the villaze of Brydekirk, 3 miles (N. by W.) from Annan. The district forms a section of the vale of Annandale, about five or six miles above the entrance of the beautiful river Annan into the Solway Firth. The scenery is remarkably rich, varied, and extensive, rising on either side of the Annan (the banks of which are finely wooded) to a considerable elevation, and embracing from different positions the whole sweep of the surrounding country. The greater portion of the soil is under cultivation, in the usual routine of farming; and the remainder, to a large extent, is covered with timber and plantations. The village is pleasantly situated on the western bank of the Annan which is here crossed by a substantial bridge; it is neatly built, and intersected by the road from Annan to Lockerbie. In 1841 an act of parliament was passed for the construction of a branch railway, by the Caledonian railway company, from their line at Ecclesfechan, southward, by Brydekirk, to the Glasgow, Dumfries, and Carlisle line at Annan. The woollen manufacture was established in 1824, but the spacious building that was erected for the purpose at the east end of the bridge, has been some years converted into corn-mills: there is still a small carding-mill. Ecclesiastically Brydekirk is in the presbytery of Annan and synod of Dumfries. The church, erected in 1835, chiefly at the expense of Mrs. Dirom of Mount Annan, and her friends, is a neat structure, standing at the western extremity of the village, and contains 370 sittings. The minister's stipend is derived from the seat-rents, augmented by donations from the proprietor of Mount Annan; and a handsome house has been erected for his residence: the patronage is vested in the subscribers, managers, and male communicants, being seat-holders. Application is about to be made to the Court of Teinds, for the erection of Brydekirk into a parish under what is called Lord Aberdeen's Act; and should the application prove successful, the stipend of the minister will be £120, exclusively of the manse. There is a branch here of the parochial school, the master of which has a salary of £10, in addition to the fees, together amounting to about £40; and a parochial library is under the superintendence of the minister.

Transcribed from Samuel Lewis' A Topographical Dictionary of Scotland, 1851