Memorial garden preparing to bloom

The Thomas Chalmers Memorial Garden under construction.

The Thomas Chalmers Memorial Garden under construction.

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A LONG-awaited permanent memorial garden in tribute to academic and prolific preacher, Thomas Chalmers, arguably Anstruther’s most famous son, is finally coming to fruition.

The Anstruther Town Centre Working Group has, for several years, been planning the creation of the garden and has now obtained the necessary funding and completed the design, complete with a bust of Chalmers himself, information boards, retaining walls, seating, a sensory garden and other plantings.

The site of the garden, which is expected to be finished by the end of January, is on the corner of East Green and Haddfoot Wynd.

Chalmers’ academic achievements were such that he was admitted to St Andrews University at the age of 12. However, as he came from a family of ministers, his parents wanted him to continue in this tradition.

He became a truly inspired and caring preacher and embarked on a massive project of reform to provide better education for children, before returning to academia at St Andrews University.

He then played a massive part in the events which culminated in what is known as the Disruption, a protest against the system of patronage which ruled the Church at that time, and resulted in ministers and families being thrown out of their churches and manses.

After the Disruption, Chalmers’ qualities of leadership, intellect, passion and zeal were unrivalled and, in the space of a few years, had raised enough money for the building of 700 churches and manses, 600 schools and three theological colleges, before his death in 1847.