UP ON HIGH:

1 September 2017 No Comments by The Northern Standard

Our photograph taken by staff photographer Rory Geary on Tuesday morning last shows a steeplejack at work on the spire of St. Patrick’s Church, Monaghan. The job of repairing some of the stone work and cleaning the spire is being carried out by Edward Wilson and Company Ltd, Steeplejacks, Newtownabbey, Co. Antrim.

The Church which was built at a reported cost of €5,330 was opened on the 24th of February 1836 and stands at 120ft. The architect was William Farrell, who was also known for a number of other historical buildings including Enniskillen Church of Ireland Cathedral, Omagh Hospital and churches in Armagh and Ballyshannon.

The builder was John Clarke. Incidentally, the Church was badly damaged in a storm locals called The Night of the Big Wind on the 6th January 1839. The Northern Standard (12th January 1839) reported: “On the night of Sunday last (6th January 1839), the storm which ravaged the kingdom, was servery felt in the town of Monaghan.

About half past eleven o’ clock the gale, which had been gradually increasing for some time swelled into a most terrific hurricane and about three a.m. on Monday morning, the power of air rushing from the south-west bore everything before it with resistless force…Many chimneys were injured and we regret to say that three of the small spires, which ornamented our beautiful Church (St. Patrick’s), were thrown from their bases and broken to pieces. The amount of damage done in the neighbourhood is enormous”

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