Plans to make Graignamanagh’s Duiske Abbey wheelchair-accessible have been given approval by Kilkenny County Council.
The plans involve modifying the pathway that runs along the north side of the church, to provide a wheelchair-accessible pathway to the side door. A new internal ramp is then proposed between the external doorway and the internal doorway leading into the church.
Originally it was proposed to create a ramp at the main entrance, but the new plans were determined to be a preferable option for the church, which is a protected structure.
“The Archaeological Assessment states that the pavers from the roadside kerb and the cobblelock pathway were installed during the works to the church in the 1970s,” according to the planning file. “The small hallway to the east of the north transept is stated to also have been added as part of these works. It is not envisaged therefore that there will be any significant impact on archaeology at the site as a result of these works.”
The council placed five conditions on the planning permission, including that before starting the works, the developer must agree the final details with the National Monuments Service and the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht; and that “the external pair of doors opening from the new approach should be held in the open position when the church is in use to facilitate disabled users.”