Re: Re: reordering and destruction of irish cathedrals – St Colmans Cathedral, Cobh

Home Forums Ireland reorganisation and destruction of irish catholic churches Re: Re: reordering and destruction of irish cathedrals – St Colmans Cathedral, Cobh


The Cathedral of St. Patrick, Skibbereen, Co. Cork, is the Cathedral church of the the diocese of Ross. It was buit between 1825/1826 and 1830 by the Rev. Michael Collins, subsequently Bishop of Cloyne and Ross. The Cathedral was built in a neo-classical style, and while modest in scale, is not without interest. The architect for Skibbereen was Michael Augustine O’Riordan, a remarkable man by any standards. Educated in the neo-classical style, he worked extensively in Cork City and County. Some of his churches include the North Chapel in Cork i.e. the Cathedral of St. Mary and St. Anne (1808), Blackrock Village (1818), Doneraile (1827), Millstreet (1836), Bantry (1837), Kinsale (1838), and Dunmanway (1841). In 1826, at the age of 42, he made profession as a Patrician Brother. Along with continuing building churches, convents and schools throughout Cork, he spent his time teaching in the schools for poor run by the brothers. Skibbereen Cathedral, fortunately, survived the rush to “reordering” and the worst phases of its consequent iconoclasm – partly due the sensitivity arising from the recent status of the diocese of Ross. It was only in very recent time that a fairly minimialist approach to reordering took place which saw the preservation of the High Altar but the loss of a portion of the fine altar rails and their gates in the face of the forward thrust into the nave all too familiar in Irish “reorderings”. The refurbishment and renovation of elements of the Cathedral in Skibbereen are by Wain Moorehead of Cork. The same refurbishment could usefully have removed the amplifiers adhering to the capitals of the columns at the chancel arch. Choir Stalls never appear to have been installed in Skibbereen.

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