Organisation : Waterford County Museum
Article Title : Ardmore Memory and Story - The Village
Page Title : St. Pauls Church
Page Number : 6
Publication Date : 06 November 2013
Expiry Date : Never Expires
Category : Ardmore

The church of St. Paul is a pleasant building with gothic revival windows of simple pointed arches filled with leaded panes and a large decorated 3-light east window with fine stone tracery. It was built in 1838, which is at the same period as the Catholic churches in the parish were being built. Up to this time, part of the old cathedral in the graveyard was still roofed and services were being held there.

The campaign for repair of the old church or the erection of a new one on another site was in motion since 1829 (according to the Vestry meeting of July 1829). Difficulties existed as regards changing the site and at a Vestry meeting of 2nd January 1836, it was unanimously resolved that a petition from the parishioners be drawn up and signed, praying his Excellency, the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland to suffer the site of the present church of Ardmore be changed to the ploughland of Dysert in said parish. This was forwarded to the Privy Council.

At the April meeting in 1836, there was a charge of 10/- for a fender and fire-irons for the church, so it was still in use. It’s fascinating to think of a fender and fire-iron in use there.

However, the Lord Lieutenant and Privy Council had looked on the petition with favour and the Vestry of 16th April 1838, was held 'in the Glebe House of Ardmore, the church being dilapidated and the new church not yet finished. The Easter Vestry of 1839 held on 1st April was in the parish church of Ardmore.

What a tragedy, that a church had been build on a new site, if only the old one had continued in use, it would probably have been adequately repaired in the meantime, and how wonderful it would have been to have had Christian service continuing there down through the years, instead of its being open to the elements as now.

The Tudor baptismal font was brought down to St. Paul's. There is an inscribed chalice dated 1726, which had disappeared from the church and was restored by Robert Day F.S.A. who purchased it at Sotheby's in London, where it was for sale.

Service is conducted weekly during the summer; and during the Christmas period, there is a wonderful ecumenical carol service. We have attended a baptism there, some wedding ceremonies and funeral ceremonies and we were the guests of St. Paul's for mass one Sunday in the 70's, when St. Declans Church was in a state of upheaval during the re-organisations there with Vatican 2 regulations.

In April 1973, Rev. Rector Mc Manaway, Youghal was instituted as Rector of Ardmore Parish. St. Paul's was added to the Youghal Union of Parishes, having been transferred from the Diocese of Lismore to the Diocese of Cork, Cloyne and Ross.

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