St. Andrews Church
St. Andrews Church
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Thangam M
Chennai1,460 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2014 • Couples
St Andrew's Church in Chennai (Madras), is located at Egmore on Poonamallee High Road just about a kilometre away from the bustling Chennai Central Railway Station. Egmore Railway Station is even closer at just about 0.5 kms. Other prominent landmarks in the area are the office of the Police Commissioner and the Daily Thanthi press, both located just across the road from the church.

Quite apart from being one of the most strikingly elegant churches in Chennai, at almost 200 years St. Andrew's finds its place amongst the oldest too.

Worship services in English are held at the church on Sundays. The service timings are:
Morning - 7.00 am
Morning - 9.00 am (Main service)
Evening - 6.00 pm

The Church was dedicated in 1821 for worship by those owing affiliation to the Church of Scotland who were for the most part, Scots of the British Army. This explains why this church came to be known by its Scottish name "The Kirk" (which means "The Church").

Although the believers who visit this church today are mainly Indian, it does have visitors from across the world. To this day, worship at the church follows the Scottish Presbyterian tradition and its long and illustrious list of Presbyters is headed by John Allen who graced this position between 1814-1822!

Set in sprawling grounds this church is picture perfect - its eloquent elegance can be seen from several sides. The facade is graced by beautiful ornamentation. The pediment showcases two lions and written on the frieze are the words Auspicio Regis Et Senatus Angliae which translates to "by command of the King and Parliament of England".

The dome of the church is not very high - it is supported by columns that are rooted on a checked black and white floor. The stained glass windows above the altar are masterpieces in their own right. The commanding church spire is poetry frozen in stone.

The Kirk is justifiably proud of its grand musical tradition over the almost 200 years of its existence. The centre piece of this musical heritage is its pipe organ manufactured in England in the 1880s!

Between 1925 and 1995, renowned musicians such as Victor Paranjoti and Handel Manuel have proudly served as the organists, choirmasters and composers at this magnificent church. Music at St Andrew's is seen as a means to enriching, inspiring and uplifting the quality of the congregation's worship.

The Kirk - veritably a piece of Scotland in Chennai.
Written October 12, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

clementwill
Chennai173 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2015 • Family
This church stands tall and majestic on the Poonamallee High Road near the Egmore Railway station. You cannot miss this Scottish church which is in a large compound with many old shady trees. The tall spire inspires people to pay a visit inside the church. The inside of the church is beautiful and takes one back in time. The peace and tranquility of the church and the colonial architecture make it worth a visit even if you are not looking for a place to pray. The church is filled with monuments of the Europeans who served in the East India Company and gives an insight of the days gone by.
Written February 7, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Bornav
Assam, India11,103 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2013 • Family
One of the best preserved colonial churches in south India and one of the few colonial structures open for tourists. This white Scottish church is a peaceful place and is devoid of noisy tourists. There are beautiful icons painted on the windows, tall Doric columns and with sculptures engraved on its marble walls.
Written March 1, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

haarizzz
Chennai (Madras), India1 contribution
5.0 of 5 bubbles
This place is filled with God's presence with a lot of lovely people and pastor. The architecture is just brilliant and you can notice nice stone art at the entrance. Try getting to the roof and know it's abundance in nature. Guess it's reaching it's 2nd century. Don't miss to take a peek at the service.
Written February 18, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Dilip S
Vadodara, India1,111 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2016 • Couples
On 10th December , we visited St. Andrew's Church (The Kirk) , inspired by St Martin in the Fields in London , a magnificent example of Neo Classical architecture and designed & executed by Major Thomas de Havilland & Colonel James Caldwell of Madras Regiment was of the Scottish Presbyterian tradition and continues to belong to it .

On April 06th 1818 the Foundation stone of the Church was laid . The Kirk was Consecrated for God’s Glory on February 25th 1821 . The Church Bell rang for the first time in 1822 . Superb Mahogany pews furnish the interior . From 1839 , the pews were let out to prominent citizens , the brass fittings that once held their name cards were seen by us . In 1881 , Evening Services were started after installation of lamps lit by kerosene . The dull green and burnished gold Pipe Organ , having 9 stops in the Great manual, 11 stops in the Swell manual, six stops in the Choir manual, two stops in the Pedal manual and five couplers , tracker action , manufactured by Messrs Peter Conacher & Co Ltd (Springwood, Huddersfield, Yorkshire, England) became part of worship and praise (A small organ was used before this pipe organ) in 1883 . On October 10th , 1909 a stone pulpit was introduced for the first time .

As the Kirk stood on a flood prone sandy soil, the foundation of the Kirk was laid by digging 150 , 4 m to 15 m deep wells underneath . The wells were constructed either by specially made curved bricks or pottery cylinders . These wells were dug by a group of itinerant well sinkers – the Mumvutties . These wells were placed so well to ensure maximum compaction of soil , allowing the water to rise within them and thus protecting the main building .

The body of the Kirk was a circle , with rectangular compartments to the east and the west . The circular part 24.5 m in diameter was crowned by a shallow masonry dome in deep blue colour formed by crushed sea shells mixed with lapis lazuli . The dome was painted with golden stars and supported by 16 fluted pillars with Corinthian capitals lending beauty and balance to the design .

The steeple was 50 m high . On top of its slim pyramidal spire was a bronze weathercock .

This was one of the most inspirational churches we had visited .
Written January 14, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

David B
Leeds, UK312 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2016 • Friends
Peaceful amid the hustle of Chennai, This beautiful building claims to be one of the top ten examples of Georgian architecture in the world. It is similar to St Martin in the Fields, London. The central nave is build around a dome with a light and refreshing feel. We went back to the Sunday evening service which was in English - so welcoming and friendly.
Written March 5, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Nelson Saldanha
Mangalore19 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2015 • Couples
St. Andrew’s Church popularly known as Scottish church. This exquisite marvel of architecture was built and dedicated in 1821 for the Scotsmen in then British army.

The body of worshippers today is mainly Indian and cosmopolitan. It has regular visitors from all over the world.

Written April 16, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Film G
New England1,053 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2024 • Couples
With a blue dome studded with gold stars, and the pews arranged in a semi-circle around the altar and lectern, the church on a Sunday, after services, was half full with the lingering faithful reading scripture and visiting with each other. Serene spot.
Written March 3, 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

#amosamiyanayek🎧
Chennai (Madras), India131 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2019 • Friends
based on architecture.. maintenance are such a well one of the oldest church ... very close to egmore station and bus stop calm atmosphere and greeny garden mass timing fixed my proper schedule mostly in English and very well understandable
Written December 5, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Niya1315
Gurugram (Gurgaon), India1,049 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2019 • Solo
This church has a very tall building, which is visible from a distance too. This church is at a walking distance from Egmore Railway Station. The area of this church is quite big. The environment is very soothing here.
Written July 29, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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St. Andrews Church, Chennai (Madras)

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