Restoration Project

The Need for Restoration

Like many old buildings,over time the roofing structures of St. John’s Cathedral have deteriorated seriously, posing a major threat to the future structural soundness of the building.

This roof decay has permitted the ingress of rain water (a plentiful commodity in the West of Ireland), permeating the stone walls of the building and resulting in severe deterioration of the interior plasterwork and paintwork.

Restoration Objectives

The restoration plan has been four fold:

1. Correct all weaknesses in the roofing structure.

2. Eliminate all sources of dampness.

3. Repair all damaged interior plasterwork.

4. Totally redecorate the interior of the Cathedral.


The first step was to engage the services of church-restoration professionals, who developed a plan to systematically correct structural deficiencies and eliminate all sources of dampness. This has involved stripping out decayed materials and installing durable replacements.

When this work was complete, the walls were permitted to dry out completely (a slow process for stone walls up to one metre thick), and this was followed by plasterwork repair and redecoration.

This culminated in the Cathedral being beautifully restored for the 50th anniversary celebration on 25th October 2011.


It would have been impossible to undertake this extensive 5 year restoration programme without funding from external sources.

Consequently, we greatly appreciate the very welcome financial support from Sligo County Council, the National Development Plan, the Heritage Council and the Department of the Environment.

Additionally, donations have been received from Church of Ireland funds and parish fund-raising activities,and from extremely generous individual subscriptions.

Further donations, large or small, will be greatly appreciated and will make an important contribution to preserving this historic building for future generations.

SC 2011