Handcrafted in Dromod: Months of work went into the Pope's chair in Knock

Fiona Heavey


Fiona Heavey

The Pope's visit to Ireland was marked with a number of contributions from Leitrim people and groups that helped make the events so special at the weekend.

The chair Pope Francis had his moment of quiet prayer in the Apparition Chapel, Knock was created by ICS Furniture, Dromod.

The chair was designed by Gavin Duignan MD of ICS Furniture. The chair's design is purposefully understated and crafted using a combination of maple and walnut. The Papal crest adorns the back of the chair and the Knock shrine symbol is placed on the front.

Commenting on the design and what it symbolises, Gavin Duignan commented, “The brief for the chair was to create an understated modest family kitchen chair. My inspiration for the design was a traditional Irish three-legged stick chair which can often be seen in Ireland and Wales. The central back panel in maple is shaped to represent Christ in life while the black walnut cross is significant in that he died for us. In this congress of families, the open arms are welcoming, forgiving and loving all in one. From the outset Pope Francis has been a humble man and I felt it important that the chair too would be understated”

The management and staff at ICS Furniture in Dromod Co. Leitrim, have been working behind the scenes for a number of months on a specially commissioned chair for Sunday's Papal visit of Pope Francis to Knock. Having worked on the extensive refurbishment of the Basilica in 2015, the company were once again called upon to produce a special chair for Pope Francis to be used by him during his silent prayer. The chair was positioned in front of the gable wall in the Apparition Chapel and will be on permanent display there.

Also read: Rossinver's Choir of Ages to perform for Pope Francise in Croke Park