Friday 28 July 2017

Church wall collapse fears for ancient cadaver tombstones

ONE OF Drogheda's landmark attractions is in danger of falling down, with emergency repairs having to be carried out at enormous expense to St Peter's Church of Ireland.

The old wall in the cemetery which houses the iconic cadaver tombstone is leaning dangerously, causing the adjacent Church Lane to be closed to traffic and urgent works to be carried out.

' The sad thing is there are no Heritage Grants available anymore, so with the council saying they are not liable to assist, we have no alternative but to us use own funds to pay for it,' says Rev Michael Graham.

'We had an engineer and the conservation officer examine it, and they both agreed that in the current state at some point it would fall, so they have tried to prop it up with minimal invasion, and it's hoped proper work can start next week.'

The tombstone dates back to the 14th century, with this particular slab dating from 1520 and was associated with Sir Edmond Golding and his wife Elizabeth Flemying, the daughter of the Baron of Slane.

It has become a major attraction on walking tours of the town, and Rev Graham says it would be a shame if something should happen it.

' We are not flush with funds at the moment, and the money we are going to have to use to mend the wall is badly needed elsewhere in the Church,' he tells the Drogheda Independent.

'But we can't take the risk that this important piece of Drogheda's history should be lost, it's just a shame that there are no heritage funds to help in the cost.'

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