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Notre Dame.JPG
World News

Arisen from the ashes - France promises to re-open Notre Dame de Paris cathedral next December

by Premier Journalist

One of the great symbols of Paris, the Notre Dame cathedral, is to reopen to visitors at the end of 2024 - less than six years after a fire ravaged the roof, according to French officials.

The fire began on the Monday of Holy Week in 2019, a week in which Christians celebrate the life of Christ, leading up to Easter Sunday and the commemoration of His resurrection.

The first step will happen this year. The army general in charge of restoration says the cathedral spire, which collapsed in the blaze, will gradually start reappearing above the monument this year.

"The return of the spire in Paris's sky will in my opinion be the symbol that we are winning the battle of Notre Dame," Jean-Louis Georgelin said.

After a delay due to Covid, the rebuilding started last year after more than two years of work to make the monument stable and find sufficient skilled artisans for the project.

Despite ideas of major alterations, French authorities decided to rebuild the 12th century Gothic masterpiece as it was originally constructed, together with its 19th century addition, the 315ft spire.

An exhibition called Notre-Dame De Paris: At The Heart Of The Construction Site, will open to visitors this week in front of the cathedral. It will be open for free and features remains from the fire and works of art from the cathedral.

Mr Georgelin said the cathedral will reopen by Christmas next year, in line with the goal set by President Emmanuel Macron just after the fire.

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