Notre-Dame spire will be rebuilt with 200-year-old oaks from royal forest

The wooden spire of Notre-Dame cathedral is being re-built using centuries-old oak trees felled from a former royal forest – almost two years after it was destroyed in a fire.

The lead-coated spire, which for more than 150 years had defined the central Paris skyline, was consumed by the blaze in April 2019, collapsing through the stone-vaulted roof to the tears and gasps of distraught onlookers.

President Emmanuel Macron announced last summer the 96-metre (315ft) spire would be reconstructed as originally designed by Eugene Viollet-le-Duc in the 19th century, and the hunt for the 1,000 oaks required to build the spire and the frame of the cathedral’s transept began.

At the beginning of this year, the perfect trees were identified in Domaine de Berce, near Le Mans. They must all be chopped down before the end of March before the sap rises and the wood contains too much moisture.

In this Tuesday April 16, 2019 file image made available by Gigarama.ru shows an aerial shot of the fire damage to Notre Dame cathedral in Paris. A French activist group has filed a lawsuit over health threats from toxic lead released in Notre Dame Cathedral's devastating fire. Hundreds of tons of lead melted when the April fire destroyed the cathedral's roof and spire, and exceptionally high lead levels were later recorded in the surrounding air. (Gigarama.ru via AP, File)
Image: An aerial shot shows the fire damage to Notre Dame cathedral. Pic: Gigarama.ru via Associated Press

Read the full story on Sky News

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