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Sunday 21 October 2018

Time is yawning for theatre awning

IT IS one of the longest-awaited openings in the Olympia Theatre's history.

Staff at Dublin's famous city-centre venue are frustrated that its newly restored canopy has still not made its debut over two years after it was taken down.

The ornate architectural awning has languished in a Scottish engineering firm's warehouse since it was severely damaged after a truck backed into it in 2004.

A veteran employee has accused Dublin City Council of holding up the installation of the canopy, which has been fully repaired for over a year.

Maureen Grant (81), who is believed to be Dublin's oldest serving barmaid, said the council has not fulfilled its promise to widen the path below the structure.

The city council previously stipulated that the path on Dame Street had to be extended by two feet before the canopy could be re-erected.

Its painstaking restoration has already caused a lengthy delay since the intricate, multi-coloured glass and lead structure was shattered.

The council said its erection depends on the availability of granite to extend the path. A spokesperson said a contractor has been appointed to carry out the work and expects to complete it "this side of the summer".

The canopy was erected around 1900 and was manufactured by the Saracen Ironworks in Scotland. Heritage Engineering later bought the old foundry.

It was restored by experts at the Glasgow firm.

ANNE-MARIE WALSH

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