A CHURCH that has lain partially empty for nearly two decades is to be turned into luxury flats.

Developers say the regeneration of the former Hillhead Baptist Church building will also help to secure the future of the congregation in the community.

Wemyss Properties, has been given the green light to build a development of 29 new flats just off Byres Road while retaining the façade of the B-listed church.

Glasgow Times:

Reverend Catriona Gorton, minister of Hillhead Baptist Church said: "The church has worked for many years to find a solution which would safeguard this much-loved building, so it’s a huge relief to get the go-ahead for this sensitive scheme.

"Not only will it protect this historic building, it will also ensure its future as a home for our congregation, and as a significant, and much needed, community hub for Hillhead and the surrounding area.”

The main Sanctuary has been empty for almost two decades, as it was considered unsafe to continue to occupy.

In 2016, the congregation took the decision to vacate The Tryst, which was also beginning to deteriorate.

Church services are currently held in a nearby hotel.

Subject to understanding the after-effects of the current COVID crisis, it is anticipated that work will start in 2021.

Glasgow Times:

Matthew Atton, Managing Director of Wemyss Properties said: “We are delighted to secure detailed planning permission for this exciting development.

"We have been working with the trustees and the congregation of Hillhead Baptist Church now for nearly three years to try and retain the existing façade, but more importantly, to provide the church with a new facility that will ensure its presence in the community for many more generations"