Church where Peter Tobin hid body of victim to close its doors

The parish cited a fall in people attending and number of priests as well as financial pressures for the closure.

Glasgow St Patrick’s Church in Anderston where Peter Tobin hid body of victim to close its doors STV News

The Glasgow church where Scottish serial killer Peter Tobin hid the body of one of his victims is to close its doors for good.

St Patrick’s Church in Anderston announced on Saturday that it expects to close within the next couple of years due to falling numbers of people attending the parish and number of priests as well as the financial challenges of rising bills and a repair bill amounting to almost £2m.

The infamous serial killer was found guilty of raping and murdering Polish student Angelika Kluk in 2007.

He was working as a handyman at the church where the 23-year-old lived and worked as a cleaner after being released from prison in 2004 after he sexually assaulted and raped two 14-year-old girls at his home in Hampshire in 1993, stabbing one and leaving them for dead after turning on gas taps.

The two girls survived and the following year, Tobin was jailed for 14 years for the attacks. 

At age 58, he was released from prison and returned to his native Scotland, moving to Paisley in 2004.

Two years later, in September 2006, Tobin attacked the young woman, raping and stabbing her before hiding her body beneath floorboards in the church.

Angelika Kluk, Vicky Hamilton and Dinah McNicol, victims of Peter TobinSupplied

Tobin was later arrested after Ms Kluk’s body was discovered by police on September 29, 2006. The following year he was convicted of her rape and murder and sentenced to life imprisonment with a minimum of 21 years. 

While he was serving his sentence for Ms Kluk’s murder, two missing persons cases were linked to Tobin and would finally be solved after more than 15 years of heartache for their families. 

Vicky Hamilton, a 15-year-old schoolgirl, was reported missing on February 10, 1991, after failing to return to her home in Redding, near Falkirk. Tobin had been living in Bathgate at the time and moved to England shortly after her disappearance. 

Dinah McNicol, an 18-year-old sixth former from Essex, was last seen on August 5, 1991, after hitchhiking home with a friend from a music festival in Hampshire. Following her disappearance, money was withdrawn from her account which was thought to be out of character for the teen, who was saving to go travelling. 

Months after his conviction for Ms Kluk’s murder, Tobin’s former home in Margate, Kent was searched and the remains of Ms Hamilton were discovered in the back garden. 

Days later, the remains of Dinah McNicol were also found at the property and Tobin was later charged with the two teenagers’ murders. In 2008 and 2009 respectively, Tobin was found guilty of Ms Hamilton and Ms McNicol’s murders and handed a life sentence for each. 

Angelika Kluk's body was found hidden beneath the church's floorboards.Getty Images

Announcing its closure, the church said when comparing itself with other parishes in the area it is the “quietest by attendance at Mass and by numbers of other sacraments”.

It added that the building was in poor condition and the shortage of priests means that the Archdiocese needs to send priests to busier locations.

While it described itself as “okay” financially, gas bills are expected to double while electricity, insurance and diocesan payments are to all increase.

The parish is also facing a medium-term repair bill of almost £2m with “no realistic way” of raising the money.

No final decision has yet been made on its date of closure and options for the future of the building are now being explored.

It stressed that at the time being “nothing is going to change” and Mass, funerals, weddings, baptisms and social events will continue.

It said it would keep parish members informed of updates.

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