After many visits to Cork I have begun to appreciate just how much the city was dominated by the Catholic Church but by the same token there are many signs that this domination no longer exists.
The magnificent church of St Vincent's was designed by Sir John Benson. Its style is early Gothic and it is built mainly of red sandstone. It has a spectacular appearance when viewed from the Mardyke as it is built on a rocky outcrop of Sunday's Well. The site on which it is built was donated by Miss Mary MacSwiney who was a resident of the area. Fund-raising for the project was organised by the Very Reverend Michael O'Sullivan, Vicar General of Cork. The foundation stone of the church was laid on 24 October 1851 by the Bishop of Cork William Delaney. After much of the stonework had been completed and the church was partially roofed, disaster struck on 4 November 1853 when a severe storm destroyed the roof and blew down much of the stonework. The event evoked widespread sympathy and donations for rebuilding the church were made from many Irish dioceses and private individuals. On 20 July 1856 the solemn dedication of the completed church took place. St Vincent's Church was consecrated on 14 October 1906. The interior of the church had been greatly embellished in the fifty years since its dedication. St Vincent's became the parish church of Sunday's Well parish on 2 February 1972. The adjoining Missionary House was sold to University College Cork in 2000.
Despite the decline of church power and influence I was really surprised to learn that the complex shown in my photographs was on the market.
Lot 1: The property comprises the former St. Vincents Church on a site of approx. 0.2 hectares (0.5 acres). The magnificent church building was designed by Sir John Benson. The foundation stone of the church was laid in 1851 and it was completed in 1856. Its style is early gothic and it is built of mainly red sandstone with pitched timber and slated roofs and feature stained glass windows. The building is mainly single storey with a part lower ground floor that incorporates a mezzanine level and there is an upper floor organ room. The internal apex height in the main church area is 15.4m. The property includes a surface car park to the front laid out with 18 car spaces.
Lot 2: The property comprises a south facing development site of approx. 0.45 hectares (1.15 acres) situated to the east of the former St. Vincent’s Church. It has extensive road frontage of approx. 88m to Sundays Well Road along its northern boundary although Sundays Well Road is at a higher level. The site is currently overgrown and access is from Rock Well Lane which connects Sundays Well Road with the eastern boundary of the site. There are no buildings on the site although there is a disused former basketball court. The property is in an elevated position with spectacular views overlooking the city centre, River Lee, Mardyke, St. Finbarr’s Cathedral and UCC North Mall Campus.