Cross removed from spire of St Mel’s Cathedral for restoration

Brian Rainey of Rainey Restoration Ltd with the cross from the spire of St Mel's Cathedral after it was taken down to be cleaned and guilded. Photo: Declan Gilmore
Another significant moment in the restoration of St Mel’s Cathedral occurred last Thursday when the cross on top of the spire was removed and brought to the ground for the first time in approximately 50 years.

Another significant moment in the restoration of St Mel’s Cathedral occurred last Thursday when the cross on top of the spire was removed and brought to the ground for the first time in approximately 50 years.

The work, which was undertaken by Rainey Restoration, is required in order to “rejuvenate the support structure,” according to Project Manager Ronan Moore.

The cross which is thought to have been added to the spire in the late 1960s or early ‘70s, will be cleaned and guilded and should be back in place by the end of the month.

It is unclear who made the cross, but Mr Moore said that “it should be really sparkly and easy to see from afar,” once it is returned to the cathedral’s highest point.

Last week also saw the new Stations of the Cross installed in the interior of St Mel’s Cathedral.

Carved from solid Bath stone by Cork-based artist Ken Thompson, each piece measures 46 x 55 inches, and are 4 inches deep.

“They are indeed beautiful pieces,” Mr Moore added.

Last month saw the cathedral’s new altar being moved into place. Carved by Thomas Glendon, an artist from Dublin who works in Loughrea, the altar is made from Carrara marble and weighs almost eight tonnes. Bishop emeritus Dr Colm O’Reilly blessed the altar after the positioning work was completed.