Old pulpit gets new lease of life as a coffee shop counter

A pulpit once used to impart the word of God in Longformacus is now being used as a counter in a North Berwick cafe.

Owner of whynot? Adam Elder came across the unlikely piece of culinary furniture when he heard the church was on the market.

He visited Longformacus a potential bidder but his focus was drawn to the pulpit.

Rather than having an immediate lightbulb moment that the religious structure could be a counter for his cafe, Adam’s interest in it stemmed from his passion for woodwork and he viewed it as a potential project.

Pews from the church had already been snapped up by an Edinburgh firm but the pulpit had been left for fear it wouldn’t be able to be taken out of the church without being damaged.

“Fortunately I have a friend who is a furniture restorer . He assured me he could help me dismantle it and get it up to North Berwick without it being damaged.

“No-one knew what was going to happen to it so when I told someone from the church I was keen to make use of it and give it a good home they were happy for me to have it.”

The next part of the process required some initiative and lateral thinking but with the help of some local tradesmen and a group of young volunteers, the whynot? cafe soon had a new counter.

And it has proved to be a real talking point ever since.

“I honestly could not have asked for a better counter,” Adam continued.

“As well as attracting an enormous amount of attention, it fits its purpose well; it is the perfect height.”

Someone else impressed with the pulpit’s transformation is former session clerk for Longformacus, Helen Longmuir, who was the person who showed Adam round the church.

“I was very impressed with Adam from the outset,” she commented.

““He had such a love for wood and was very respectful of the ulpit.

“I’m delighted that it’s enjoying a new lease of life as part of what is such a wonderful project Adam is working on with the youngsters.

“We offered the pulpit to Adam for nothing but he was insistent that the young people raised some money to give us a donation for it.”

Adam has kept Helen abreast of the pulpit’s rebirth as a cafe counter and she said she hopes to go and see it in person.

“There’s a few local folk keen to take a trip to see it; it’s been so tastefully and expertly done.”