History

 

Knowledge of the beginning of assemblies in Orkney is rather scant but it was during the early 1870s that they began and it is known that the assembly on the island of Westray was in existence in 1868 being the first to be established in Orkney. It came into being through the ministry of a Mr. Hopkins who visited the island and it was shortly after that the other assemblies began around Orkney.

 

In Kirkwall, the meeting was originally in a property on Shore Street. In 1880 a property was built on Victoria Street consisting of the hall on the upper floor and a shop on the lower floor which provided an income for building expenses.

 

In the beginning of the twentieth century there was a thriving Sunday School with over 90 names on the roll and 12 teachers. The Sunday School in those days was a very fruitful area of evangelism and many of the children came to know Christ as Saviour. The years during the war were also memorable times of blessing as many of the forces’ servicemen came to the gospel meetings and quite a number were saved.

 

In 1967 the downstairs shop was vacated and refurbished into an additional smaller hall, a kitchen, toilets and cloak rooms. A baptistry was also constructed, whereas previously these took place in the sea.

 

As time went by, with fire and parking regulations becoming more of a problem it became clear that a new location was required and in 1989 a former restaurant/pool room in the east-end of Kirkwall came onto the market. Fitting all the requirements perfectly for the assembly meetings, an offer was submitted and believers across mainland Orkney continue to gather there to this day.