Federal funds kickstart Perth Cathedral restoration

Urgently-needed restoration work to Perth's St Mary's Cathedral will begin next year, with the allocation of a $3 million federal grant.

The ABC reports that the Cathedral is made up of two buildings in the city's Victoria Square, but it was never completed due to the constraints of the Great Depression.

The Federal Environment and Heritage Minister Ian Campbell said the Commonwealth funding will go towards a major reconstruction project to restore the church to one of the most significant places for the state's Catholic community.

"It will be a major expansion of the seating capacity from 800 to nearly 1,200 seats, and we will also see significant improvements to the heritage aspects to the building," he said.

"Repairs where there's been rising damp, repairs to some of the magnificent artworks that are encapsulated within the cathedral."

The Archdiocese put in a request last year for $3.5 million in funds. Archishop Barry Hickey unveiled a new design for the completion of the Cathedral last May (pictured), which involved "expanding the building with graceful curved sides and twin towers buttressing the entrance to boost the cathedral's capacity to 1200 people".

Archbishop Hickey said last year that the old sections of the cathedral are deteriorating, and it was preferable to do the repairs as part of a project to complete the building.

Federal funds kickstart cathedral restoration (ABC News 13/5/05)

LINKS (not necessarily endorsed by Church Resources)
Archdiocese of Perth

$15m plan to complete Perth Cathedral (CathNews 26/5/04)

16 May 2005