Old church ruins in Magherafelt to be ‘assessed’

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AN assessment of the old church behind the Bridewell in Magherafelt is to be carried out to establish the best way forward to stabilise what remains of the building.

There has been a church on the site since pre-Plantation times and it is the burial ground of the Magherafelt estate’s first lease holder, Ralph Whistler.

It was also ransacked and set on fire during the Great Rebellion of 1641 and rebuilt by Whistler’s nephew Gabriel.

The local council heard that a specialist contractor was employed to remove ivy from the building’s walls.

Strict guidelines were issued by the NIEA governing how the work was carried out. The site was visited by two of its officers while the work was on-going to ensure compliance.

The assessment is expected to take place over the winter.