30th April 2019

Project in-spires at Irish Construction Excellence Awards

When Irish entrepreneur Dr Pearse Lyons and his wife Deirdre set out to realise their dream of establishing an Irish whiskey distillery in Dublin, they were drawn in by the rich history of St. James’ Church. The protected mid-18th century protected building had fallen into disrepair in the latter half of the 20th century and was in dire need of a major refurbishment.

Turning their dream into reality, the restoration included a new visitor centre and the refurbishment of four properties in front of the church into additional facilities.

Clear Structures worked with client Topglass to design the structural glass elements and supporting structure for a new glass steeple, in place of the original church spire which had been removed in the 1940s due to instability. At night, the spire is illuminated and is now, appropriately, regularly referred to as the ‘Liberties Lantern’.

Additionally, Clear Structures designed mobile glass balustrades and a bonded glass floor inside the church, exterior aluminium structural glazing for the three-storey visitor centre and the cladding system for the entrance lobby.

Since the completion of its restoration and conversion to a boutique whiskey distillery in 2017, it has won awards for both its construction and the experiences it offers. Most recently it added the Irish Construction Excellence Awards to the list. Recognised in the Public or Heritage Building category, contractor John Paul Construction accepted the award at a gala event on 29th March at the Mansion House, Dublin.