Counting the cost
ST. PATRICK’S RESTORATION TIME AS YET AN UNKNOWN
THE COST and duration of the renovations to the fire damaged St. Patrick’s Church in Wicklow have yet to be determined.
Fr. Donal Roche said he still had no information on the scale of the renovation works saying that someone from the Archdiocese would be arriving in Wicklow town today ( Wednesday) to examine the damage.
Once examined, an architect will be appointed.
Fr. Roche said that while the building had also been examined by representatives from the insurance company a costing on the clean up work had yet to be determined.
The church was extensively damaged by smoke after the crib was maliciously set alight on December 20.
Fr. Roche said the church will have to be totally repainted and some plastering work will be needed on the wall where the club was.
He said that thankfully no structural damage was incurred during the fire.
Thankfully the Harry Clarke stained glass windows were all undamaged but will need to be meticulously cleaned as will all the stained glass windows.
One stained glass window at the rear of the church will also need to be repaired.
The organ pipes will also need to be cleaned as a result of the smoke damage.
Fr. Roche said while he has no idea how long the renovations will take he would like to see the church back in pristine condition for the Easter celebrations. He said he might be naive in hoping for this, but local people have been working flat out to bring the damaged church back to life so hope springs eternal.
The area where the Christmas crib was placed and (inset) Fr. Donal Roche.
The altar the day after the fire.
Damage to the pews.
Anne Higgins, among an army of people helping with the clean-up.