St Ninian’s History

Church History

St. Ninian’s was built by the Admiralty in 1916 to serve the spiritual needs of the large numbers of Navy personnel based in the Cromarty Firth during the First World War. The original church, built of wood and corrugated iron, was replaced in 1988 by a modern stone building, although we retained the old roof trusses and stained glass window above the altar. We have a good hall and kitchen available for social and community events and a small lady chapel for weekday services.

The Community

The church serves the communities of Invergordon, Alness and the surrounding areas. Invergordon is situated on the Cromarty Firth, about 25 miles north of Inverness and Alness is just 3 miles west along the coast. Both communities grew rapidly in the 1970’s due to the boom in oil construction work and the development of an aluminium smelter.  Large numbers of people moved into the area in a short period of time to take up employment, many from the Central belt of Scotland and further afield. The smelter closed in 1982.

Invergordon is the main port for the Firth and the Highlands with a large amount of oil related work and cruise traffic. It is estimated that over 100,000 people go through the port each year. The present population of the area served by the church is over 12.000. Employment opportunities have suffered from the ups and downs of the oil industry. Significant numbers are employed at the local distillery, in manufacturing and light industries and call centres and there are developments related to the renewables industry.


Members of St. Ninian’s reflect the local population including those who are native to the area and those who have chosen to make their home here over many years. A number live in the surrounding areas rather than the towns. We have a number of frail elderly people and a majority of the congregation are retired.

Although we are small in numbers we have always been known as a friendly, welcoming and outward looking congregation, who care for each other and are involved in the local community in a variety of ways.  We see our mission as valuing each individual for who they are as a loved child of God and doing what we can to show that love in our community.

Any newcomers to our services or events will be assured of a warm welcome.