The new sound system for the Cathedral of St Mary the Crowned will be installed in time for Christmas. With all the cabling now complete the equipment is expected to arrive this week: speakers, microphones and control system.
An appeal for a new audio system was launched by the Cathedral Administrator Father Mario Tong. This is the first of a number of projects which will be under taken in the coming months.
In a newsletter, having been appointed administrator 17 months ago, Father Tong said he had listened to the “wishes, ideas, expectations and suggestions” of parishioners on how to improve the Cathedral.
With constant complaints about the poor and substandard quality of the audio system in the Cathedral it was felt this should be the first priority, he said.
The installation is being carried out by Stephen Cumming.
“After looking at a series of options, Stephen presented for our consideration and recommended the system we are installing. He even went to check and hear for himself the actual sound at the Cathedral in Seville where an identical system has been installed,” Father Tong added.
The new system and its installation will cost around £30,000. The recommendation was approved by the Diocesan Committee for Property and Restoration.
The crucial component enabling the system to be adapted to the specific acoustics of the building became unserviceable and this was one of the reasons why the audibility in the church has been so poor.
Mr Cumming explained that to replace this alone would not have resolved the issue.
The Cathedral, he added, presented various challenges
“It’s internal height, the number of columns and the consequent “shadow” areas. The proposed system tackles these issues by allowing each component of each speaker column to be adjusted to suit its immediate surroundings. This allows for the sound to be directed down to the congregation whilst avoiding unnecessary reflection from walls columns and the ceiling,” he further explained.
Meanwhile the suppliers and installers are authorised by the manufacturers and will be responsible for adjusting the system precisely to the Cathedrals acoustic.
To make a donation you can: place it in the envelope provided and put it in the collection box at Sunday Masses; give it personally to the Bishop or Cathedral Administrator; make a direct bank transfer to the Cathedral Account at “Gibraltar International Bank Account Name – Trustees RCC/CAN Account Number 01076301 Sort Code 60-83-14”.