A FEATURE piece on the Cathedral of St Mary and St Anne, and with particular attention to the restoration of the nine bells and tower, will be broadcast on RTÉ One’s Nationwide on Friday at 7pm.
The bells were heard across the northside of Cork City for the first time in many years following essential restoration works that were completed last December.
The cathedral was dedicated in 1808 and has played an important role in the life of Cork, as well as being the mother church for the diocese of Cork and Ross.
The nine bells, which were commissioned in 1869, were a familiar sound that announced the ordination of bishops and priests, weddings, first communions, confirmations, Sunday masses, the Angelus, and funeral masses for nearly 100 years.
Work began in 2019 on the bells, thanks to an ambitious fundraising campaign supported by personal donations, sponsorship, the parish lotto and parish donations. The cathedral worked alongside architects, engineers, and bell experts to complete the restoration.
The two most important parts of the project were remedial works on the timber support structure and restorative works on the bells. The final ambition to bring the vision for the project fully to fruition is to make the tower accessible to parishioners and visitors.
Speaking of the rededication of the bells in December, Canon John O’Donovan, administrator on behalf of the finance committees of the Cathedral, Blackpool Ballyvolane, The Glen and Sundays Well, said: “We are grateful to everyone who has helped bring this project to life over the past three years. The outpouring of support from the parishes and the people of the area is a testament to the maintaining of the heritage of this important building to the city of Cork.”