1882 – St Peter’s Church, Drogheda, Co. Louth

Architect: O’Neill & Byrne



The centerpiece of Drogheda north of the Boyne is the tall and graceful French Gothic church by O’Neill & Byrne. Set into the hillside, it is approached up a flight of steps from where its western façade with its rose window and flanking spire can be appreciated. Selected after an architectural competition in 1881, William Hague placed second.

The church is perhaps over decorated with statues and carvings. Over the main doorway is a tympanum depicting Christ giving the keys of heaven to St Peter. Flanking this are two niches with statues. The tympanums over the other doorways also contain relief carvings. To balance the tower and spire, there is a rectangular baptistry.

The interior is lavishly decorated and contains the head of St Oliver Plunkett. The interior has a wide nave of five bays with a clerestory. The arches have columns of polished granite with folliate capitals. There are carving of the heads of saints and figures from the church over the columns. The short transepts contain side altars, and the west transept is dedicated to St Oliver Plunkett.

Much of the original fittings have survived Vatican II reforms. Worth noting are the pulpit and altars in the polygonal apse.

Published January 7, 2010 | Last Updated July 7, 2024