Re: Re: reorganisation and destruction of irish catholic churches

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St Eunan’s Cathedral, Leterkenny, Co. Donegal

Work is under way on the restoration of the 110-year old St Eunan’s Cathedral in Letterkenny, Co Donegal.
The project is taking about three months to complete and will consist of repairs to the roof to counter damp, and the re-pointing of the walls and elimination of cracks.

The refurbishment project is being overseen by historic building specialists J Rainey & Co, and spokesman Brian Rainey sad that the cathedral had stood the test of time ad remained in “overall good condition apart from a few isolated sites.”

“You couldn’t get something like it built nowadays,” he remarked. “The cathedral looks so well from the ground but there are a few small cracks which have been restrained with metal bands.”

Much of the focus of the refurbishment is on restoring the 82 metre high tower, which has intricate stonework.

Mr Rainey said that the four capping stones at the summit of the spire had been damaged by the wrought iron crosses mounted on them. “We have taken the stones off and had the new ones carved and we’re replacing the crosses with stainless steel ones,” he explained.

The four specially commissioned new capping stones for the top of the tower cathedral have now been delivered by local sculptor Raymond Herrity who cut them from the same Mountcharles sandstone that was used in building St Eunan’s.

Mr Herrity, whose own great-great grandfather was one of the stonemasons who worked on the construction of the cathedral, said the pieces have all been carved from a block of stone he was given ten years ago.

He said that each of the capping stones would hold up a cross and in carving the designs, he was instructed to use the original stones as templates, so there was “very little room for error.”

The cathedral was previously renovated and remodelled internally in 1985 when a new altar table and chair were installed, while the exterior stonework was last repaired twenty years ago.

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