Braddan locator map

Parish dedicated to St Brendan.

See Parish Index page for description, links to 19th century directories etc.

Kirk Braddan - Old Church - St Braddan

Kirk Braddan - Old Church

The mother church of Douglas set in a beautiful wooded valley by the River Dhoo. The churchyard is full of Georgian head-stones and dominated by an obelisk designed by Steuart to Lord Henry Murray. Tower, 1773. Interior high pews, galleries, clear glass and monuments on walls.[JB]

Grid Reference SC364768


Built 1773 following presentations that the roof and gable of the previous church were unsafe and also after complaints that the previous church was too small. The received wisdom is that the old church was demolished and the new built from the reclaimed rubble though with quoins of Foxdale granite. However recent surveys by Mr F.Cowin have convinced him that although the east end was demolished and rebuilt and the tower added, the remaining walls are mostly the original dating from the twelfth century. Following the precedent of St Marks (b 1772) the four corners were marked by pinnacles. Unlike many other island churches it was probably never whitewashed.

Old Kirk Braddan Pulpit

Inside it has not been touched by the Victorians and remains a plain, 'almost puritanical' Georgian 'auditory church' with a true Georgian Three Decker pulpit

Interesting memorial to Rev Patrick Thompson who appears to have had his gravestone carved prior to his demise.

Memorial to Rev Patrick Thompson

Guide book Peter Kelly Old Kirk Braddan - short history and tour 1982 :pub by The Friends of Old Kirk Braddan

Kirk Braddan - New Church - St Braddan

Kirk Braddan - New Church - St Braddan

By J. L. Pearson, 1876. Austere Early English. It looks very English in this wooded valley by the old church. As in all Pearson's churches, the proportions are fine and the detail bold.[JB] The land adjacent to the old church was given by Lady Laura Buchan and on it was erected a larger church "of sufficient dimensions to accommodate not less than 500 persons".

A description is given in Manx Note Book vol II p 42.

Grid Reference SC364769


The authorising act also forbade the use of the new land, or the chancel, as a burial ground. The old burial ground had already become full (it was formally closed in 1925) and a new cemetery on the Strang road a little distance from the church was established by the Braddan Burial Ground Act 1848.

The parish has its own web-site giving details about services as well as useful links to Manx Church Law.

An interesting letter on the state of the Old & New churches was published in Manx Church Magazine, 1893.

Guide book Braddan New Church [nd]

Open Air Services

These started in 1856 by the Rev William Drury who was vicar for 40 years. They became very popular with upto 35,000 visitors attending during the holiday season. These were discontinued in 1987.

St. Luke - Baldwin

St. Luke - Baldwin

On the site of an ancient chapel (Keeil Abban) about half a mile from the village on a commanding spot which appears to be isolated from any civilisation. Bishop Ward consecrated this church on 14th May 1836, it was built to the design of John Welch. It served the dual purpose of school and church - by using a moveable screen and consecrating only the chancel end the Bishop could defray most of the costs from funds allocated for school building

Grid Reference SC360823


Thomas Cowell Baldwin, My Valley pp46-51 give a description of the church and the churchyard



A day school and Chapel of Ease opened in 1860. The day school closed end July 1892 with the opening of the new school at Kewaigue.
It was closed by Act of Tynwald in 1978 and is now a private dwelling

Grid Reference SC353738


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see also[Feltham's Tour & Memorial Inscriptions]

Any comments, errors or omissions gratefully received The Editor
© F.Coakley , 2000