The Church of Our Lady Star of The Sea, Co. Donegal

This project was successfully delivered on a very complex and restricted site. The existing church, built in 1859, was successfully restored to its former glory, and while the attention was to retain the past of the old church, a new chapel was also constructed within the site boundary. This is a hexagonal shaped building, finished in cut stone with a natural slate and lead roof covering.

External works included for the construction of a new car-park, paving, access road, vehicular bridge, pedestrian bridge, drainage and the installation of new utility services.

The project was carefully phased to enable the church and the adjoining graveyard to remain open.

Key Features:

  • The project was carried out over 4 phases. During Phase 1 the existing church and car park remained in use while the new chapel and bridges were under construction. During Phase 2 the existing church was refurbished within a very tight programme – 19 weeks. Phase 3 saw the completion of the new chapel extension after the existing church was re-opened. Phase 4 included for siteworks, including road realignment
  • We had to facilitate worship, weddings and funerals which operated smoothly as a result of daily liaison with the Parish Pries
  • Storage space and access was very restricted because of a river running through the site and the overlap with the public who required access to the church
  • We addressed these issues by careful planning, risk assessment, development of a detailed safe system of work and by involving the Parish Priest in all aspects of our planning and programming

This project was a Finalist in the 2010 RICS Awards for Building Conservation.


Key Project Information
Architect Mullarkey Pedersen Architects
Value £3.5m
Time-line 88 weeks
Duration 88 weeks
Extra Information
Location Fr R Munster, St. Mary’s Church, Bundoran
Sectors Restoration
Our experience of Woodvale Construction is that they are proactive in problem solving – always looking for solutions instead of problems. The manner in which they controlled the site conditions at St. Mary’s Church (immediately adjacent to and over a fast flowing river) admirably demonstrated their respect for and control of Health & Safety. I welcome the opportunity to work with them again
Ciaran Mullarkey, Mullarkey Pedersen Architects