The roof will cost 15 million euros. / sur

First donations come in to help build Malaga cathedral's new 15-million-euro roof

The Church authorities are preparing a campaign to encourage people to donate, with a reminder that such contributions are tax-deductible

JESÚS HINOJOSA Malaga

The countdown has started for Malaga cathedral's new roof, since the project was given the go-ahead by the regional government in May and the council granted the works licence last month. The Church authorities are currently preparing the contract for the construction, which will put an end to the leaks and damp which have been affecting the building for decades.

Apart from technical issues, on which they will be guided by architect Juan Manuel Sánchez La Chica, the diocese is also having to look at how the new roof will be paid for. Although the cost was originally estimated to be just over ten million euros, it will be more like 15 million in the end due to increased costs including those in the construction sector.

The bishop, Jesús Catalá, has explained that he intends to ask the public administrations to finance the works, as the cathedral is a monument as well as a place of worship. However, the Church authorities are also preparing a campaign to encourage people to make a donation towards the cost. In fact, some donations have already been received from well-wishers who made contact and said they would like to help.

Tax-deductible

The campaign will point out that donations of this type are tax-deductible: for individuals, a donation of up to 150 euros is 80% deductible, and for amounts exceeding that figure it is 80% for the first 150 euros and 35% for the remainder. Companies can also make donations to the Church and these are tax-deductible but at a different rate.

It is going to take at least two years to complete the new roof, which will be covered in honey-and-white ceramic tiles once finished, similar to those on the roofs of the Sagrario church and the episcopal palace.