To the Top of the Tower
Visitors to Glasnevin Cemetery in Dublin will soon be able to climb the iconic O’Connell Tower for the first time in more than 45 years.
“We really want to put back what was once there. This will be an international tourist attraction, on a par with the Eiffel Tower!”
“As you go up, there are seven windows which will give you seven views north, south, east and west right across all of Dublin, Meath, Wicklow and the Irish Sea.”
Enjoy this spectacular drone footage of Glasnevin Cemetery and O'Connell Tower, filmed by RTÉ as part of coverage of the Ireland 2016 Centenary Programme.Video: Dave Berry, Producer Director, RTÉ
This photograph shows a view of Dublin from the top of the tower at the end of the 19th Century.
A crypt at the foundation of the building contains the sarcophagus of O'Connell.
O'Connell died in Genoa in Italy in 1847. Whilst on his final pilgrimage to Rome his final wish was “My body to Ireland, my heart to Rome, my soul to heaven”.
The tower’s winding wooden stairway was destroyed by a bomb attributed to loyalist paramilitaries in 1971. The attack was said to be in response to the 1966 destruction of Nelson’s Pillar on O’Connell Street.
The tower survived the 1971 blast, but for safety reasons it was sealed up.
“We’ve been endeavouring to replace the internal staircase in the O’Connell Tower since 1991.”
The original plans are being used in the reconstruction of the staircase.
Glasnevin Cemetery Museum holds the solid silver trowel that was used to lay the tower’s foundation stone.
Historians also know that there is a time capsule hidden somewhere within the structure.
The new staircase is being built with the assistance of the Office Of Public Works at workshops at Collins Barracks.
The project is expected to be completed by the summer. Once again the O'Connell Tower will be a room with a view that visitors can enjoy.