A LONG-serving Methodist church will have its final service next Sunday before the congregation moves on to pastures new.

Longtown Methodist church has served the town’s community since the 1840s, but after the final service on Sunday, January 13, the congregation will be vacating the premises for good.

The service will be a joint covenant with the Border Kirk Church of Scotland, a parish covering both Carlisle and Longtown.

The following Sunday, January 20, there will be a service held in the Longtown Community Centre at 9.30am.

It will be taken by the Reverend David Pitkeathly, Church of Scotland minister for the Border Kirk Church of Scotland parish.

The Longtown Methodist minister Reverend Rachel Williams is looking forward to the more visible and central community presence the change will bring.

“The church building itself has some structural issues. The cost of getting it fixed was going to be more than the church could afford,” she said.

“The congregation isn’t going anywhere. We still want to be in Longtown.

“We’re hoping that this is going to be a positive step that reaffirms the church’s commitment to Longtown.”