Essential maintenance and surveys taking place on Skellig Michael

Essential maintenance and surveys have been taking place this summer on Skellig Michael.

The Office of Public Works decided not to reopen the UNESCO World Heritage site to the public this year due to COVID-19.

The works are outlined in the 2020 season report on Skellig Michael.

Repairs to the Upper Lighthouse road including the installation of additional crash decks to protect OPW staff from future rockfalls are ongoing and will be completed next year.

Works began on the Lower Lighthouse ahead of its proposed refurbishment to provide secure accommodation for OPW workers and consultants on the Island.

The summer also saw essential annual maintenance works to the steps leading up to the monastery, the monastery structures, the lighthouse road and workers site huts.

Several surveys will also take place on the island including on puffins, the monastery and ruins on the south peak.

It is expected that the OPW staff will leave Skellig Michael in early October and return in advance of the 2021 season.

The OPW Commissioner John McMahon, OPW Chairman Maurice Buckley and Chief Archaeologist Michael McDonagh of the National Monuments Service visited the island over the summer.