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Steeplejacks from Rainey Restoration Ltd installing lightning conductors on the main spire.
Steeplejacks from Rainey Restoration Ltd installing lightning conductors on the main spire.
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Lightning rods replaced at St Fin Barre's Cathedral

SAINT Fin Barre's Cathedral has been granted €15,000 to replace some of the structure's lightning rods.

The government funding, made available through Cork City Council's Architectural Conservation Areas Grant Scheme has facilitated a new lightning rod for the main spire as well as repair work along a band that runs around the whole roof of the cathedral. 

Steeplejacks from Rainey Restoration Ltd installing lightning conductors on the main spire.
Steeplejacks from Rainey Restoration Ltd installing lightning conductors on the main spire.
"We discovered that the old lightning rods were no longer compliant with current regulations when minor roof repair work was being carried out. 

"This came as a big surprise as the previous rods were only fitted in 2000.

"We were given a quote of €40,000 to replace all of the rods, which was a huge shock to the system," Dean of Cork Nigel Dunne told The Echo

"The cathedral would be a great risk during electrical storms and we are particularly wary of fire hazards given the tragic fire that occurred at the cathedral of Notre-Dame de Paris earlier this year," Very Revd Dunne continued. 

The ACA grant scheme decided to allocate €15,000 - the maximum possible grant to St Fin Barre's Cathedral, which has funded approximately half of the necessary work.

Now almost completed, the replacement of the lightning rod on the main spire was undertaken by Rainey Restoration Ltd.

 St Fin Barre's Cathedral was selected due to it's historical and architectural significance. Picture: Eddie O'Hare

St Fin Barre's Cathedral was selected due to it's historical and architectural significance. Picture: Eddie O'Hare

The additional work is expected to be completed next year if additional funding can be procured.

€65,000 was made available to the ACA scheme, which aimed to encourage good custodianship of historic buildings in conservation areas, investment in their fabric and good conservation practice.

Back in June, 15 projects were recommended for funding.

St Fin Barre's Cathedral was selected due to it's historical and architectural significance. 

Designed by William Burges and consecrated in 1870, the present Cathedral lies on a site where Christian worship has been offered since the seventh century.

The cathedral's limestone spires are 140 years old this year, completed in October 1879.

It has been said that St Fin Barre's may be the most coherent French Neo-Gothic style cathedral in western Europe.

The Dean of Cork extended his sincere thanks to Cork City Council for allocating the funding:

"This was necessary work and I would like to take the opportunity to Cork City Council for their tremendous support," he said.