Oughterard classical concert will launch church renovation project

Oughterard’s parish church will host a first fundraising concert tomorrow evening (November 11 at 7.30pm ) as part of its major renovation plans.

The Church of the Immaculate Conception, which has served the area for nearly 190 years and boasts a famous Harry Clarke stained glass window, requires major structural repair following a recent report.

As a result a special classical concert will kick-start the fundraising campaign tomorrow evening with musicians Finghin Collins (piano ) Elizabeth Cooney (violin ) and Rachel Croash (soprano ). It will also feature the CoisCladaigh Chamber Choir in a programme of music ranging from Chopin to Puccini, in addition to favourites such as ‘Danny Boy’ and ‘The Sally Gardens’ in a programme chosen to appeal to all.

The collapse of the church ceiling in the sacristy earlier this year prompted a structural review which revealed several major problems, including the need for a complete replacement of the sacristy roof, extensive renovation of the bell tower, the access stairs, which are severely damaged by wood worm, the choir gallery, and the church organ area. Works will also be carried out to the wall and ceiling in the existing small children’s room.

The renovations will also include providing better facilities for parishioners, including public toilets, proper accessibility for disabled users, management of roof water, and a new eco-friendly heating system for the entire church.

Tickets for the concert are available from Opus II High Street in Galway and Fuchsia Crafts in Oughterard and cost €15 for adults and €10 for children under 16.

In keeping with the community approach to the event, local restaurants have agreed to offer a special pre-concert two-course dinner between 5pm and 6.30pm for €16 per person.

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