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George Mayer-Marton estate
George-Mayer-Marton-Oldham-mural.jpg
George Mayer-Marton estate
World News

Catholic councillors call for Crucifixion mural to be moved out of church over vandalism fears

by Donna Birrell

Catholic councillors in Salford have written a public letter expressing their worries that a historic mural on a Catholic church in Oldham is under threat because of anti-social behaviour.

They're calling on the council and the Diocese of Salford to move the artwork in Holy Rosary Church to a local gallery.

They say the mural, which was given Grade II listing last month and which depicts the Crucifixion of Christ, could be vandalised because the building has been the site of recent anti-social behaviour. The Church was closed in 2017 and in August this year the Catholic Church in England and Wales said that left the mural "vulnerable to decay and vandalism".

The mural was commissioned by the Catholic Church in 1955. It was created by George Mayer-Marton, a Hungarian artist who was forced to flee to the UK after the annexation of Austria in 1938.

A spokesperson for the Diocese of Salford told the Catholic News Agency:

"We thank the councillors for their interest in the mural and we look forward to meeting with them and council leaders soon to discuss their proposal further.

"We remain committed to preserving this important piece of work and are actively work with all interested parties to find the best option to respect the mosaic and preserve its heritage for future generations to enjoy.  

"Despite the security measures put in place to secure the building we have in recent weeks been subject to some anti-social behaviour and a small amount of damage has taken place. Additional security measures are now in place and are being reviewed daily."

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