Annual Report 2019

The Church of Scotland

Kildonan and Loth, Helmsdale Church of Scotland


Congregation No: 402258

Charity No: SC 004056

Year ended 31st December 2019

Reference and Administrative Information

Charity Name: Kildonan and Loth, Helmsdale Church of Scotland
Congregation Reference No: 402258
Charity Registration Number:SC004056
Contact Address:  Mr. Adam S. Macpherson,
49  Portgower,


Kirk Session                                                                                          

Interim Moderator: Rev John Chambers (Resigned 30th June 2019)

Interim Moderator: Mrs. Gladys MacCulloch (Appointed by Presbytery on 1st July 2019)

Locum Minister: Dr. Rosemary Power (Post terminated on 3rd July 2019)                                                                     

Mr. Adam S. Macpherson

Mrs. J. Murray    (retired)                                                                                                                                                          

Mrs. Christine Sutherland

Mrs. Christine Cowie

Mrs. Ina D. S. Macpherson

Mrs Janys Wetton

Principal Office-bearers

Interim Moderator: Rev John Chambers (Retired 30th June 2019)

Interim Moderator: Mrs Gladys MacCulloch (Appointed 1st July 2019)

Locum Minister: Dr. Rosemary Power (Post terminated on 3rd July 2019)

Session Clerk: Mrs. Ina D. S. Macpherson

Church Treasurer:  Mr. Adam S. Macpherson

Independent Examiner

Rev. Hilary M. Gardner

Cayman Lodge

Wester Kincardine Hill:


1V24 3DJ


Bank of Scotland,

Dunrobin Street,




Trustees’ Annual Report

Year ended 31 December 2019

Structure, Governance and Management

Governing Document

The Kirk Session  adopted the Deed of Constitution (Unitary Form)

Recruitment and Appointment of Trustees

Members of the Kirk Session  are the charity trustees.  The Kirk Session members are the elders of the church and are chosen from those members of the church who are considered to have the appropriate gifts and skills. The minister, who is a member of the Kirk Session, is elected by the congregation and inducted by Presbytery. The Interim Moderator is appointed by the Presbytery Clerk

Organisational Structure

The Kirk Session which met 9 times in 2019 (including joint meetings with Clyne Session), is responsible for the spiritual affairs within the church. Certain responsibilities are delegated to the Fabric Convenor, Safeguarding Convenor, Treasurer and Session Clerk. The Stated Annual Meeting will take place on the 22nd March 2020

Objectives and Activities

The Church of Scotland is Trinitarian in doctrine, Reformed in tradition and Presbyterian in polity.  It exists to glorify God and to work for the advancement of Christ’s Kingdom throughout the world. As a national Church, it acknowledges a distinctive call and duty to bring the ordinances of religion to the people in every parish of Scotland through a territorial ministry. It co-operates with other Churches in various ecumenical bodies in Scotland and beyond.

The primary objectives of the Kirk Session are to sustain congregational life and providing the ordinances of the religion to all who live and work within the Parish, although in a period of vacancy this is more difficult, however we endeavour to continue to outreach and connect with our Community.

Sunday services had been taken by Locum Minister Rosemary Power, until her departure on the 3rd July 2019. Thereafter a range of Ministers, Readers and Session have taken the services, although the pulpit supply is good, we really do lack pastoral care both in  the Church congregation and the wider community.

The Kirk Session keep life and Fabric of the Church in good order, but we need more Elders and a Minister / Locum, a person who will guide us through the next phase in the life of Bunillidh Church including good Stewardship, maintaining our good relationship with the local Primary school.

 Our main objective this year is survival, with fewer people to do the work, and the congregation reducing in size we really have to think out of the box. The renovations of our Church will prayerfully help to achieve our objectives and open up the Church building to host events.

Garbh Allt Community Project are renting our transept, the income is appreciated particularly in a year when some our regular contributors have passed away.

Worship is held every Sunday at 12.00noon in the Main Church building, during the summer months, and in the Hall in the colder winter months, a cup tea or coffee is provided in the hall prior to the Church service .

To engage with the congregation we have “Soup an Sweet” lunch on Stated Annual meeting, and Gift Day. Simnel cake at Easter, Pentecost cake on Pentecost Sunday after the morning service, in the hall. The Session organise the Watch night service and we use this as a means of reaching out to the community, some readers are not regular attendees but happy to support us.

The Knitting group meet in the Hall weekly. The knitting group’s aim is to promote the charitable and caring work of the Church,

Trustees’ Annual Report (cont)

Year ended 31 December 2019

Prayer Shawls have been given to a number of people in the Community

One of our main objectives is to revamp our Bible study/ Prayer group meeting as this is a vital part our Church’s life,  particularly in a time of vacancy.

We will continue our link with the Helmsdale Primary School, we very much appreciate how  fortunate we are that the Head Teacher is very happy to allow the Church into the school and the school came to our Church.

The Easter Good Friday Communion will be held in Bunillidh Church this year.

Fund Raising for our own Church:

The Gift Day with a “Soup and Sweet lunch” including a sales table, Sale of Work including a Raffle.

In order to engage with our local Community we held a sale of Work, Jumble Stall and Raffle for the “Helmsdale War Memorial Restoration Fund”

Bunillidh Church like to support the work done by recognised Church of Scotland Charities.

Christian Aid Week we had a retiring Collection

Supply (money)Collecting boxes for Tear fund.

Collection of used stamps for World Mission Council

Service for the Fishermen’s Mission

Continue relationship with the Friends of Kildonan Church, Timespan Heritage Centre, Helmsdale Community Transport group, the Local village Hub, The Local Legion group and the local RNLI group.

Continue our ecumenical relationship with the local Free Church

This year the Watchnight service was taken by the Session and the collection was given  to Crossreach Eventide Home in Dornoch for the “Sensory Garden Project”

Continue to support Blysthwood with a number of Christmas Shoe boxes, a considerable amount of knitted items and monetary donation.

Achievements and Performance

The Church has had another very busy year unfortunately a particularly difficult year. However with the help of a visit from “Place for Hope” we are now ready to look forward and face  the challenges 2020 will bring.

Unfortunately the Bunillidh Church web site, is not being used as much as we would like, perhaps we will have to engage with some who will take this post on permanently. Our face book page, Bunillidh Church is now being used as a means of advertising.

We have kept up with most of our activities and raised money for:-

Christian Aid Week with a retiring Collection.

Fishermen’s Mission, our annual service was led by the Mission superintendant Colin Mackay. by the local Free Church as well as people from Brora, Golspie. A wonderful Tea was provided at the close of the service, and a date agreed for our next year’s service, approximately 40/50 people attended.

For our Easter service, the knitting ladies visited the school and gave each of the children a knitted chicken with a chocolate egg inside.

The Sunday Harvest Thanksgiving service donations were donated to  the local Hub.

Prayer shawls were given to people we felt in need of comfort, a card from the Church and a Prayer in the form of a Book mark were included. They have been well received.

Blythswood Shoe Box Appeal, again we collected a number of boxes full of goodies for the Shoe Box Appeal, the knitting group continue to knit a variety of items for the shoe boxes, including hand bags. As most of our wool is donated by the community we like to put it to good use. Knitting is also a good talking point in the Church and shows we are a working active Church.

All aspects of Safeguarding are in place within our Church.

Thanks to our Fabric Convenor our property continues to be well maintained.

Mrs Sheila Fox has to be commended for the work she does in cleaning our Church and Hall.

Trustees’ Annual Report (cont)

Year ended 31 December 2019

Our Church is in good health, although we are a small congregation we have a big heart, and over the year we have seen a few new people worshipping in the Church on a regular basis,. This is wonderful and with the help of our Kirk Session we will prayerfully be able to attract new members and be able to make a difference.

Financial Review

The principal source of income is from weekly offerings, which are slightly down from last year. Free Will Offering and Open Plate show a decrease whilst Gift Aid shows an increase. After having no funerals last year we had 8 this year with charges of £1280.

Activities for generating fund show an increase, we now rent our Transept to the Garbh Allt Project Group, which started in October. A rental of £100 a month is charged which is a boost to our Income.

Reserves Policy

It is the Trustees’ policy to hold reserves of approximately six months expenditure.

The Church has cash funds of £3659 which will be sufficient for six months .

Statement of Trustees’ Responsibilities

The members of the Kirk Session prepare financial statements which give sufficient detail to enable an appreciation of the transactions of the Church during the financial year. The members of the Kirk Session are responsible for keeping proper accounting records which, on request, must reflect the financial position of the Church at that time. This must be done to ensure that the financial statements comply with the Charities and Trustee Investment (Scotland) Act 2005, the Charities Accounts (Scotland) Regulations 2006 and the Regulations Anent Congregational Finance approved by the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland in 2007. They are also responsible for safeguarding the assets of the Church and must take reasonable steps for the prevention and/or detection of fraud and other irregularities.

Approved by the Trustees and signed on their behalf,

Ina D. S. Macpherson

Session Clerk


Kildonan and Loth, Helmsdale Church of Scotland


Independent Examiner’s Report to the Trustees of Kildonan and Loth, Helmsdale Church of Scotland

I report on the accounts of the charity for the year ended 31st December 2019 which are set out on pages 7 to 12.

Respective responsibilities of trustees and examiner

The charity’s trustees are responsible for the preparation of the accounts in accordance with the terms of the Charities and Trustee Investment (Scotland) Act 2005 and the Charities Accounts (Scotland) Regulations 2006.

The charity trustees consider that the audit requirement of Regulation 10(1) (d) of the Accounts Regulations does not apply. It is my responsibility to examine the accounts as required under section 44(1) (c) of the Act and to state whether particular matters have come to my attention.

Basis of independent examiner’s statement

My examination is carried out in accordance with Regulation 11 of the Charities Accounts (Scotland) Regulations 2006.  An examination includes a review of the accounting records kept by the charity and a comparison of the accounts presented with those records.  It also includes consideration of any unusual items or disclosures in the accounts, and seeks explanations from the trustees concerning any such matters.  The procedures undertaken do not provide all the evidence that would be required in an audit, and consequently I do not express an audit opinion on the view given by the accounts.

Independent examiner’s statement

In the course of my examination, no matter has come to my attention

[other than disclosed below*]

  1. which gives me reasonable cause to believe that in any material respect the requirements:
    1. to keep accounting records in accordance with Section 44(1) (a) of the 2005 Act and Regulation 4 of the 2006 Accounts Regulations, and
    1. to prepare accounts which accord with the accounting records and comply with Regulation 9 of the 2006 Accounts Regulations have not been met, or
  2. to which, in my opinion, attention should be drawn in order to enable a proper understanding of the accounts to be reached.

Rev Hilary Gardner

Cayman Lodge

Western Kincardine Hill:


1V24 3DJ

Date: 15th February 2020