The steeple at St. Anne's Church in Tecumseh has finally been raised. November 14, 2017. (Photo by Mark Brown)

St. Anne’s Steeple Finally Raised

A landmark church’s steeple has once again taken its rightful place in the skyline of the town of Tecumseh.

Early Tuesday morning, a crane began the slow but stirring process of lifting into place the steeple and cupola belonging to historic St. Anne’s Church. By 9am, the steeple was being held above the tower by harnesses while crews prepared it to be lowered back into a position it has not occupied for ten years.

Throughout the morning, people had been parking their cars at neighbouring businesses to watch the lift take place, many recording the process on their cell phone cameras.

The steeple and cupola had been displayed on the church’s front lawn since being removed from their perch in 2007 due to concerns about wood rot compromising the structural integrity of the church.

The church is in the midst of a $3.8-million restoration project, which not only includes major work on the church bell tower, but also work on the roof and façade. About $2.5-million of that cost is being covered by a donation from local philanthropist Al Quesnel. Another $15,000 has been provided by the town of Tecumseh through a grant.

The church has been the focal point of the Tecumseh city centre since 1873, though the parish itself predates the confederation of Canada, established in 1859. The church celebrates Mass in both English and French.

To allow crews to continue working to put the steeple back in place, Lesperance Rd. between Tecumseh Rd. E and Arbour St. will remain closed in both directions through Friday.