St George’s Church

North of the Liffey

One of Dublin's most beautiful buildings is this deconsecrated church, built by Francis Johnston between 1802 and 1813 in Greek Ionic style. It is topped by an eye-catching, 60m-high steeple modelled on that of St Martin-in-the-Fields in London. Alas, it has fallen into serious disrepair and has been shrouded in scaffolding for more than a decade.

Although this was one of Johnston’s finest works, and the Duke of Wellington was married here, the building's neglect is largely due to the fact that it’s Church of Ireland and not Roman Catholic – the Protestant (and largely moneyed) community for whom it was built has shrunk to the point of disappearance. The bells that Leopold Bloom heard in Ulysses were removed, the ornate pulpit was carved up and used to decorate a pub, and the spire is in danger of crumbling, which has resulted in the scaffolding.

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