The third and final planning application relating to the restoration of St Mel’s Cathedral in Longford is to be submitted by the St Mel’s Diocesan Trust.
The application concerns the exterior of the building and its surrounds, including the grounds of the adjoining presbytery.
To the front of the presbytery, the piers and railing are to be moved back from the road to create a new civic space. The present entrance to the presbytery is to be relocated five metres to the west, and new sliding gate is to be installed in front of the residence which will form a boundary between it and the cathedral grounds.
Natural stone paving is to be laid in front of the cathedral, while there will also be a new pedestrian entrance and disabled access from Dublin St, a fire tender access route to the rear of the building, and retractable bollards located at the main entrances.
The steps to the cathedral adjacent to the family centre are to be moved, re-assembled in a revised configuration, while alterations will also be carried out to the footbridge connected to the Family Centre to improve disabled access.
A number of car parking spaces will be located in the grounds, while a wall and timber screening will be erected around the presbytery. There will also be a tree-lined avenue along the west side of the grounds which will incorporate stonework salvaged during the rebuild.
The Diocese plans to have St Mel’s Cathedral open for Christmas 2014.