The Office of Public Works has confirmed that Sceilig Mhichíl will re-open to visitors this Sunday, following works on the island to repair damage caused by recent rockfalls there.

The opening date has been delayed by a day to facilitate repair work to a safety wall and to the pathway from the pier to the 600 steps which lead to the sixth century monastic settlement.

Sceilig Mhichíl is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a protected national monument.

Visits to the island are controlled by the Office of Public Works, which licenses a number of local boatmen to make the 90-minute trip to the island, 12km off the Kerry coast.

Around 12,500 people visit Sceilig Mhichíl every year, but interest in the rock has increased following the filming of parts of two Star Wars movies there.

A spokesman for the OPW told RTÉ News said its staff have carried out engineering and technical assessments of vulnerable areas of the island and are satisfied that the risk to visitors from further rockfalls has passed.

However, the spokesman said, the situation will be kept under review and the OPW may close the island again at short notice if an identifiable risk arises.

Barring further incidents, the island will remain open until 2 October next.