General Trustees

Our remit

A statutory corporation known as "The Church of Scotland General Trustees" was set up in 1921 to hold properties and investments for the Church as a whole. The members of that body, appointed by the General Assembly, are known as the General Trustees.

Over the years the administrative responsibilities of the trustees have been increased and today they act on behalf of the General Assembly in various areas, which include authorising sales and lets of property, vetting alterations at buildings, assisting local congregations with maintenance and improvement work and giving financial assistance in a number of ways.

The trustees have a duty to preserve the properties and funds which they hold in the name of the Church of Scotland and if they are selling any of the Church's property they must ensure that full value is received.

The trustees believe that they should deal with the resources under their charge for the best advantage of the Church and in particular to assist with the funding of parish ministry and the provision and maintenance of buildings.

Our work 

The General Trustees can provide practical advice and guidance on maintaining and improving Church properties, manses and glebes. They can also provide limited financial aid to congregations facing expenditure on their buildings, and produce a range of resources for congregations to assist in looking afte their properties. You can find out more information about this in our section on Looking after Church buildings.

The Trustees

General Trustees must be either ministers or elders of the Church of Scotland. There is no fixed number of trustees, but normally there are around 36, of which rather more than a third will be ministers. The elders can come from all walks of life but tend to be accountants, architects, lawyers and surveyors. Meetings of the trustees and their executive committees are normally held fortnightly and these meetings – along with frequent visits to parishes and presbyteries – mean that being a General Trustee involves a heavy commitment. The chairman is Mr Iain C Douglas and the vice-chairman is Mr Roger G G Dodd.

Our committee conveners are:

  • Fabric Committee: Mr Roger GG Dodd
  • Chairman's Committee: Mr Iain C Douglas
  • Glebes Committee: Mr William M Lawrie
  • Finance Committee: Mr Peter F King
  • Audit Committee: Dr J. Kenneth Macaldowie
  • Law Committee: Professor Stewart Brymer

Contact for more information

Further information about the work of the General Trustees is available from the secretary, David Robertson, by email at gentrustees@cofscotland.org.uk

Specific questions should be addressed as below:

All can be contacted by emailing gentrustees@cofscotland.org.uk or at the Church's offices in Edinburgh.

Annual Report and Financial Statements

Meetings

Please note that unless otherwise stated, all meetings will be held at the Church Offices at 121 George Street, Edinburgh.

General Trustees

2017
  • 31 January
  • 7 March
  • 4 April
  • 13 June
  • 25 July
  • 26 September
  • October – to be confirmed
  • 28 November

Fabric Committee, Glebe Committee and Chairman's Committee

2017
  • 10 January
  • 14 February
  • 21 March
  • 25 April
  • 16 May
  • 27 June
  • 4 July
  • 5 September
  • 10 October
  • 7 November
  • 19 December

Finance Committee

2017
  • 15 February
  • 27 March (joint with Audit)
  • 26 April
  • 26 July
  • 25 October

Audit Committee

2017
  • 27 March (joint with Finance)
  • 9 May
  • 14 November