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St. Nicholas Church of Ireland church, County Westmeath
View from the east.
Reg. No.15400335
Date1800 - 1810
Previous NameN/A
CountyCounty Westmeath
Coordinates241621, 271500
Original Usechurch/chapel
In Use Aschurch/chapel
Freestanding Church of Ireland church, built c.1806, comprising two-bay hall with attached three-stage tower on square-plan to the west with crenellated parapet and corner pinnacles. Shallow sanctuary/chancel to east gable and single-storey vestry to northeast corner. Pitched natural slate roofs with raised limestone verges to nave and cast-iron rainwater goods. Cement rendered walls to hall over projecting stone plinth. Tower constructed of rubble limestone with ashlar limestone detailing, including projecting string courses and an ashlar parapet and ashlar pinnacles with ball finials over. Pointed-arched windows to nave and to chancel with timber Y-tracery, leaded windows and cut-stone sills. Pointed-arched doorcase to south face of tower with chamfered limestone surround, battened timber door, overlight with Gothic tracery and a tooled limestone hoodmoulding over with 'heart-shaped' stops. Ashlar limestone quatrefoil mouldings to second stage of tower with pointed-arched openings above to third stage/belfry with timber Y-tracery and timber louvers. Set back from small country road to the south of the village of Coole and surrounded by graveyard with mainly nineteenth century grave markers. A late medieval/seventeenth century font is located inside this church.


An appealing early nineteenth-century Church of Ireland church, built in a subdued Gothic style, which retains its early form, character and fabric. These small, simple, but well-built churches have become almost iconographic features of the rural Irish countryside. Its layout is typical of the standard hall and tower church, which were built in great numbers, particularly between 1808-1830, using loans and grants from the Board of First Fruits (1722-1833). This church at Mayne was built in 1806 using a gift of £500 from the Board of First Fruits. The doorcase with unusual 'heart-shaped' label stops is a noteworthy feature of artistic merit. The late medieval/seventeenth century font located inside of this church is of archaeological interest and was probably moved from an earlier church located to this site close to this site. Lewis (1836) records that there was an ancient church associated with St. Feichan of Fore at Mayne, of which no extant remains are in evidence. It is possible that some of the fabric of this earlier church was incorporated into the present structure when it was built. The graveyard with good quality cut stone grave markers adds to the setting of this attractive site. This church forms an interesting pair of early nineteenth-century Church of Ireland structures with the associated rectory (15400336), which is located a short distance to the southeast.
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