The community buy out of Bruntsfield St Oswalds has been completed after three years in the planning.
The B-listed church on Montpelier Park has been vacant since February 2018 when Boroughmuir High School moved to its new premises by the canal.
David Urch, Chair of Bruntsfield St Oswald’s, said: “We are delighted to have brought St Oswald’s into community ownership and would like to thank all our members and supporters, the Scottish Land Fund, the Community Ownership Support Service as well as The City of Edinburgh Council for making this possible.
“Our work now turns to transforming this historic building over the next year into a vibrant place for children, their families and our wider community to participate in a broad range of activities and events.”
Cllr Rob Munn, Finance and Resources Convener, said: “As we start to move out of lockdown, it’s really encouraging to see fantastic projects like this going ahead. I’m looking forward to seeing the building brought back to life when it opens, filled with local families, the elderly and carers being offered valuable services in their local community.
“It’s so important that we give local people a say on the facilities they need for their area and this is one of four community asset transfers which are taking place over the next few weeks. Well done to the local people for making this much-needed project happen.”
The purchase was made under the Community Empowerment Act 2015 supported by a grant from the Scottish Land Fund. The building is expected to open to the public in 2022 after extensive refurbishment.
St. Oswald’s Church was opened in 1900 and designed by Edinburgh architect Henry F. Kerr with the design influenced by Henry J. Wotherspoon who was Minister at St. Oswald’s until 1923. The Hall predates the Church by six years and was also designed by Henry F. Kerr. The building was a place of worship until 1963 when it was sold to Edinburgh Council.
St. Oswald’s Church and Hall was designated a Category B listing (buildings of special architectural or historic interest which are major examples of a particular period, style or building type) by Historic Scotland in 1993. It was used as the Annexe for Boroughmuir High School, and occasionally as a venue for Edinburgh Fringe performances, until February 2018.