St Cuthbert's Parish Church

Venue details
5 Lothian Road,
Edinburgh Area
Telephone (box office)
0131 229 1142
Fringe Venue
About the venue

Attractive city centre kirk located at the corner of Princes Street and Lothian Road under the watchful gaze of Edinburgh Castle. In spite of its city centre location, the Church of Scotland Church retains a silent, shadowy calm among its mature trees and heavy, moss-coloured gravestones.

The gothic setting belies a warmer atmosphere inside, with its attractive cupola and impressive stained glass windows depicting biblical scenes in ornate and decorative detail. One window is more modern - a panel showing David on his way to slay Goliath in New York's Tiffany glass.

The church is served well by its acoustics and a 19th Century pipe organ, for services and recitals including at the Edinburgh Festival when it is a listed Fringe venue.

St Cuthbert's is considered one of Edinburgh's top, medium-sized concert venues, and is home to the Scottish Sinfonia and Edinburgh Bach Choir.

The current church building goes back a long way - although St Cuthbert's was built in 1892-94, it was built on the grounds of six earlier churches. Its Minister, Rev Peter Sutton, says it is "the oldest Christian site in Edinburgh".

Following renovations in 2021, the church removed some of the pews in the sanctuary to create a more flexible space and added an A-V system with large screens under the gallery. It now also has a wet room with shower and toilet.

Look out in the kirkyard for a bronze statue of 'Bum' the dog, gifted by Edinburgh's twin city San Diego. You can also find the likes of Thomas De Quincey, writer of Confessions of an English Opium Eater; William Macao, first naturalised Chinese citizen of Scotland; and John Napier, the father of logarithms.

Famous crime-writer Agatha Christie married her second husband, the archaeologist Max Mallowan, inside the church on 11 September 1930.

A 3-D tour of St Cuthbert's provides a virtual look inside the historic building. 


55.9492, -3.206291