01 Jul 2022

New lease of life for an Offaly Church

New lease of life for an Offaly Church

Work being undertaken to repair the bell at St Finian's Church in Kinnitty.

ST Finian’s Church, Kinnitty has been given a new lease of life under the direction of its small group of volunteers, St Finian’s Action Group.

The timber frame which had held the bell in place for the past 172 years had eroded and the axel had pull through, leaving the 500 kilo copper bell in a dangerous position.

This mammoth task was carried out by locals who volunteered their time and expertise to ensure that the bell, which was first installed by the Bernard family (Kinnitty Castle) in conjunction with the parish, was once again secure.

Alan and Cian Sheppard along with Sean Mortimer led the works of dismantling and replacing the wooden axel and steel supports with Flahertys’ timber of Kinnitty, donating the timber for the job.

The bolts and chain mechanism had rusted and along with the erosion of the wooden axel due to weathering, the entire support for the bell needed to be replaced.

A new wooden axel and new steel supports were designed and fitted and the bell is now in perfect working order.

St Finian’s Action Group are delighted with the outcome of the restoration project and welcome visitors from near and afar to visit the church and Kinnitty Pyramid which overlooks the church.

The next project the group are keen to get working on is to create a sensory garden and a more accessible pathway to the pyramid for the public. St Finian’s Action Group are awaiting co-operation from Offaly County Council on getting this project underway.

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