The first phase in the restoration of the Oughterard Courthouse has been completed, and to mark the occasion the historic building will host its first concert on Monday (December 8 ).
Contempo String Quartet will perform a short concert of classical and seasonal music at 8pm, two hours after the courthouse opens its doors for the community to view the current restoration work.
The first phase has been delivered “in budget and on time”, says Leslie Lyons of the Oughterard Courthouse Conservation & Heritage Company.
“It is a great achievement by the committee and the people of Oughterard whose generous support is so greatly appreciated.”
Mr Lyons says it is important to appreciate the significance of this iconic building designed by William Caldbeck c1840.
“For more than 20 years the preservation and restoration of the courthouse was considered and debated locally, as was its potential use as a possible heritage centre. The building deteriorated more quickly following its vacation by the court services in 2008,” he says.
However, Forum Connemara, through the LEADER Programme, and the local community, has now made possible the “realisation of the dream of bringing an old, rapidly deteriorating building into the 21st century where it can be used to promote cultural, educational and social activities”.
Admission to the courthouse and concert is free.