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Churches in Caithness

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Churches in Caithness
St Trothans or Olrig Kirk

On the north-west gable of ruined Kirk are date (1633) and the initials of the then minister David Bruce.

A medieval Kirk probably existed on the site before this date and may have been dedicated to St Trothan.

Despite very strong influence of the Kirk, superstition and legends abound.  The old kirkyard at Olrig is the scene of the tale about the Selkie Woman.  Found as a baby swaddled in a sealskin, she was subsequently banished from the kirk as a devil worshipper and ultimately died giving birth to her first child.  A small hollow on the stone reputed to cover her grave is said to never dry out!

ND16NE 4 1868 6705.
St Trothan's Church (NR) (remains of) OS 6" map, (1970)

The ruins of Olrig Parish Church, known as St Trothan's: The structure is roofless and the gables and walls, entirely overgrown with ivy, are levelled to a height of about 10ft all round. The church has measured 49ft by 26ft over all. It presents no features on interest and is said to have been erected in 1633. An old font stands on the left side of the gate to the churchyard.

St Trothan's Church is as described by RCAHMS. The entrance, at E end, and windows on S side are filled in. A locked door on S side bars entrance to church. A stone surmounting NE corner bears the date 1633. The graveyard is no longer in use.
Visited by OS (J B) 23 October 1981

St Trothan's church and burial ground. Ivy-covered church without a roof, the walls consolidated, associated with a burial ground.
R J Mercer, NMRS MS/828/19, 1995

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