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Saint Brendan's Church of Ireland Church, Oxmantown Mall, Birr, County Offaly
14819024
Representative view
Reg. No.14819024
Date1810 - 1820
Previous NameN/A
TownlandTOWNPARKS (BB. BY.)
CountyCounty Offaly
Coordinates206072, 205258
Categories of Special InterestARCHITECTURAL ARTISTIC SOCIAL TECHNICAL
RatingRegional
Original Usechurch/chapel
In Use Aschurch/chapel
 
Description
Detached Church of Ireland church, built in 1815, to a design by architect John Johnson, with four-bay nave and five-stage tower. Extended in 1876 by the architect Sir Thomas Drew. Pitched slate roof hidden by castellated parapet. Ashlar limestone buttresses to random coursed limestone walls to cornice and castellated parapets with pinnacles. Various window openings: round-headed, ogee-arched and pointed-arched openings with tooled limestone surrounds and hoodmouldings. Large east window with stone tracery and stained glass. Decorative clock, blind windows and lancet openings with vents to tower. Various door openings. Main entrance to west with carved stone surround, hoodmoulding, timber panelled door and decorative timber fanlight, flanked by smaller similar openings to side aisles. Interior with galleries to rear and sides of nave. Memorial plaques to walls. Marble altar furniture. Ribbed vaulted ceiling springing from quatrefoil-profile columns with foliate bosses. Site bounded by low limestone plinth wall, surmounted by wrought-iron railings. Intermittent stone wheel guards surround railings. Cobbles surround church.

Appraisal

Saint Brendan's Church of Ireland Church, is situated to the east of the Georgian Oxmantown Mall. The street is a complete unit with terminating vistas created by the church to the east and the entrance to Birr Castle to the west. Built by the architect John Johnson in 1815, it was extended in 1876 by the renowned architect Sir Thomas Drew who added a new chancel. Further enhancements included the insertion of the east window, which was commissioned from Charles Kempe by the fourth Earl of Rosse in 1891. In terms of design, the church itself is very grand, and a fitting piece of architecture to oppose the entrance to the Birr Castle Demesne. Its fine stonework, boasting Perpendicular tracery on the east window and elaborate hoodmouldings above door and window openings, adds to this beautiful example of ecclesiastical architecture.
 
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