Saint Patrick's Catholic Church
Courtesy of the National Inventory of Architectural Heritage
The following information and photographs are provided
|1875 – 1885
|BALLYGLASS [CLAN. BY. C.BOY. PH.]
Categories of Special Interest
|ARCHITECTURAL ARTISTIC HISTORICAL SOCIAL TECHNICAL
In Use As
Detached four-bay double-height single-cell Catholic church, dated 1879; built 1880-1, on a rectangular plan with single-bay single-storey gabled projecting porch (south-west). Reconstructed, 1956. Dedicated, 1956. Renovated, —-, with sanctuary reordered. Pitched slate roof, clay ridge tiles with Cross finial-topped repointed drag edged tooled cut-limestone buttressed gabled bellcote to apex to entrance (west) front, and replacement uPVC rainwater goods on eaves boards on rendered eaves retaining cast-iron downpipes. Roughcast walls on rendered plinth. Lancet window openings with drag edged dragged cut-limestone flush sills, and concealed dressings framing fixed-pane fittings having stained glass margins centred on square glazing bars. Lancet window openings (east) with drag edged dragged cut-limestone flush sills, and concealed dressings framing fixed-pane fittings having leaded stained glass panels. Lancet “Trinity Window” (east) with drag edged dragged cut-limestone flush sills, and concealed dressings framing storm glazing over fixed-pane fittings having stained glass margins centred on leaded stained glass panels. Lancet window opening to entrance (west) front with drag edged dragged cut-limestone flush sill, and concealed dressings framing uPVC storm glazing over fixed-pane fitting having stained glass margins centred on square glazing bars. Full-height interior open into roof with Gothic-style timber panelled choir gallery (west), timber panelled confessional box, tiled central aisle between timber pews, paired Gothic-style timber stations between frosted glass windows with stained glass memorial windows (east), carpeted stepped dais to sanctuary (east) reordered, —-, with stepped “predella” supporting replacement altar table below stained glass memorial “Trinity Window” (—-), and exposed scissor truss timber roof construction with wind braced ceiling on carved timber cornice. Set in own grounds.
A church representing an integral component of the later nineteenth century ecclesiastical heritage of south County Mayo with the architectural value of the composition, one succeeding a chapel described in a letter (24th January 1880) by Reverend James Heaney (d. 1900) as ‘a thatched chapel not large enough to contain half the numbers who come there on Sundays whilst the other hald have to kneel often under the downpour of rain’, suggested by such attributes as the rectilinear “barn” plan form, aligned along a liturgically-correct axis; the slender profile of the openings underpinning a streamlined “medieval” Gothic theme with the chancel defined by an elegant “Trinity Window”; and the handsome bellcote embellishing the roof as a picturesque eye-catcher in the landscape: meanwhile, aspects of the composition illustrate the partial reconstruction of the church to designs (1956) by Maurice Sweeney (d. 1958) of Galway (Irish Builder 20th October 1956, 967). Having been well maintained, the elementary form and massing survive intact together with quantities of the original fabric, both to the exterior and to the interior reordered (—-) in accordance with the liturgical reforms sanctioned by the Second Ecumenical Council of the Vatican (1962-5) where the McWalters Memorial “Trinity Window” highlights the artistic potential of the composition: meanwhile, an exposed timber roof construction pinpoints the engineering or technical dexterity of a church making a pleasing visual statement in a rural street scene.