Kilchoman Church Ruins, Isle of Islay, Scotland

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Kilchoman Church, on the Isle of Islay, is not a pretty ruin, compared to some of the medieval ones that I have posted about.  But it sort of compels you, to stop and have a look.  We had just left Kilcoman Distillery in May 2016, and were a little short of time, so I was allow a quick photo shot….unfortunately I knew nothing about the church, and had only noticed its outline on the hill as we were passing.  Its not so much the church that you would come to see, but the two Kilchoman Crosses and I missed them, also a very nice grave slab.  In one of the photos you can just see one of the crosses peeking out from the back of the church.  But not all is lost, as we are going back to Islay in May, so hopefully now I know they are there, I can take some photos.  


The church was built in 1817, when the population of the island was much larger than today.  The ruins replaced a medieval church, thought to have been built in the 1300’s and which served a large parish.  This medieval church was deemed to be unsafe in 1824 and was replaced with the present one you see today.  Unfornunely the population has dwindled and many people who live on the island, now live in main settlements rather than rural areas.


If you look to the right of the photo, at the back corner of the church, you will see one of the crosses that I missed……. carved in a style known as the “Iona School” at some time in the 1300s or 1400s….. and I missed it, I still can’t believe I did.


There is nothing left of the medieval church, but the graveyard has plenty of evidences of its existence, which I will explore when I return, hopefully.  But it was now time to be off to the next distillery, I couldn’t complain too much, as it was really husbands trip to see all the distilleries, so I was quite lucky he stopped for all of the times that I asked him to……and that was lots 🙂






8 Replies to “Kilchoman Church Ruins, Isle of Islay, Scotland”

  1. I think this ruin has a beauty all it’s own. I hope you get a chance to take more pictures. What does Commonwealth War Graves mean?

    1. Glad you like the church ruins. Commonwealth War Graves, are graves where Commonwealth service men are buried, who died in wars from enemy action, I always find then very sad.

  2. I very much enjoyed seeing the ruins of this country church, these graveyards always bring to mind the song ” the green fields of France” the chorus goes.. did they beat the drums slowly,did they play the fife lowly,did they sound the death march as they lowered you down,did the band play the last post and chorus , did the pipes play the flowers of the forest…

  3. I’ve done exactly the same thing, Lynne – driven past this church thinking it didn’t look promising, and missed the cross at the back. We went back to find it on a very gloomy and wet day which was awful for photos, so I never got any pics that day either. Lovely beach at the end though! 🙂

    1. Ha ha, thats always the way. Hopefully I will get them in May,. We drove down to the beach and it was lovely, Nancy had a run, but it was getting a bit late to take photos 🙂

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