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Amazing mosaics at the Church of the Ascension, Timoleague

Amazing mosaics at the Church of the Ascension, Timoleague

Rev Kingsley Sutton
Church of the Ascension Timoleague

This hidden gem of West Cork is home to amazing wall-to-ceiling mosaics that are unique in Ireland.

The Church of the Ascension, Timoleague has built and dedicated in 1811 and over the decades since, intricate mosaics installed by Italian tradesmen have gradually spread from the chancel area to the entire church body. Dedicated to the glory of God, the local Travers family installed and paid for most of the work, but the south wall mosaic memorial is perhaps the most surprising. It was erected by the Maharajah of Gwalior of India in memory of a locally born doctor, Aylmer Martin Crofts. He had become of personal physician and friend of the monarch and at one point, saved the life of his son. In gratitude, the Maharajah never forgot and erected the mosaics in Aylmer's honour.

Throughout the building, there are many hand-carved memorials along with examples of exceptional stained-glass windows.

On the Open Day, 15th August, at 3.00 pm and 4.00 pm, Finola Finlay, a stainded-glass specialist, will give two insightful lectures on site. This will include the famous Warrington chancel window which caused great upset with the bishop when it was installed in the late 19th century, as he felt he could not dedicate it for theological reasons. A clever person found a compromise by covering the window with a curtain which hung in place for nearly 30 years!

There are many other interesting stories like this to discover about other features of the church.
Come and explore it for yourself.

Please contact the event organisers (details below) for the latest information regarding COVID-19 safety measures and to register for this event

Touching Heritage at the Argideen Estuary

A guide to the church

Event Details

  • Sunday, 15th August 11am to 6pm
  • The church will be open to the public under current COVID-19 restrictions. People are free to enter and inspect the mosaics and other features of this unique place of worship. Stained-glass specialist Finola Finlay will give two brief lectures at 3pm and 4pm. The building contains many fine examples of this art form.

Discover more about this project

Further Information