St Canice’s Graveyard awarded further €85,000 to help preserve historic siteGary Ibbotson 27 Apr 2022
St Canice’s Graveyard in Finglas has been awarded a further €85,000 in funding to support the restoration and conservation of the historic site.
The funding was allocated under the Community Monuments Fund for the second year in a row.
The main aims of the nationwide fund are to support the “conservation, maintenance, protection, and promotion of local monuments and historic sites,” according to the Department of Heritage.
The cemetery, which is estimated to be over 1,000 years old, has garnered the attention of Dublin City Council and local TDs in recent years after it fell into total “disrepair,” according to Social Democrats councillor Mary Callaghan.
The local authority announced the recent funding allocation during a scheduled works update at a North West Area Committee meeting last week.
Fianna Fáil TD for Dublin North West Paul McAuliffe said the funds will be used appropriately.
“In 2021 the Community Monuments Fund grant-aided the preparation of a Conservation Management Plan for St. Canice’s Graveyard, the publication of this plan is expected in the coming weeks,” Deputy McAuliffe says.
The TD says that the local authority should work in co-operation with volunteers who dedicated their time to conserve the graveyard.
“It is now imperative that Dublin City Council liaises with the Lynch Family, families of St Canice’s Graveyard, Finglas Historical Society, Finglas Tidy Town’s and other relevant stakeholders who work hard to maintain the graveyard, on the best way forward to preserve and promote this vital part of history,” he says.
In its report to councillors on how the management plan and conservation works were progressing, Dublin City Council said that a habitat survey has been commissioned and a laser scan of the church ruins and boundary walls was underway.
It also said that the newly allocated €85,000 will be largely spent on “repair works to the church ruins, the boundary wall and to a small number of mortuary monuments and carry out a structural survey of the high cross.
“A conservation architect led team has been commissioned by Parks to undertake the design of the conservation works,” it said.
The stone Celtic cross, or a nethercross, also estimated to be 1,000 years old currently stands on the Wellmount Road side of the graveyard but has been severally eroded away and in need of restoration.
Callaghan, a local councillor says the seven-foot cross “has been deteriorating rapidly in recent years due to pollution.”
A meeting with North West Area councillors and city archaeologist John Tierney to discuss the graveyard and the council’s findings is planned for the coming weeks.