Current Events

Nearly 2 years after inferno: A look at Notre Dame’s restoration progress

On 15 April 2019, the fire at Paris’ Notre-Dame caused international emotion after the blaze brought its towering spire and roof crashing to the ground, wiping out centuries of priceless heritage central to French culture and history. Two years later, despite Russia’s offer to assist being snubbed, the work to make the cathedral safe is nearing completion.

While the spire collapsed and much of the roof was destroyed, the efforts of firefighters ensured the great medieval edifice survived the night. But the road to restoration has been long and arduous and it is only expected to return to its former glory in April 2024, five years after the fire.

The cause of the blaze remains a subject of uncertainty, although investigators are so far rejecting any idea of foul play and focusing on a short-circuit or even a dropped cigarette as possible explanations. If there was an anti-religious intent in the arson then the authorities and media will go to any lengths to douse speculation.

President Emmanuel Macron set the five-year restoration target in the immediate aftermath of the fire, which would mean the cathedral could be open again when Paris hosts the 2024 summer Olympics.

Securing the building

The actual restoration work has yet to begin. Until now, work has been focused on securing the building, including the painstaking task of removing 40,000 pieces of scaffolding calcified in the fire. This should be finished in the summer, allowing the full restoration works to begin early next year.

Already, some 1,000 specially-selected oak trees are drying out to reconstruct the spire, which Macron had been tempted to replace with a modern touch but will now be rebuilt as it was, and the crossing of the transept.

The interior of the cathedral is today marked by a web of scaffolding, surrounded by nets and tarpaulins, where carpenters, rope workers, scaffolders and crane operators hurry around.

“Everything that fell because of the fire, everything that burned, we had to evacuate it, room by room, square metre by square metre,” says roof technician Michaël Lemaire to RFI.

For the past two years, the “climbers” of Notre-Dame have been extracting burnt beams, the remains of the roof and sacks full of charcoal and debris. © RFI/Lucile Gimberg

“All the material of the roof was reduced to dust. Sometimes there were pieces of copper, pieces of structure, nails. All these elements have a history. They are pieces of Notre-Dame, which, although burnt or degraded, are still considered as important remains,” he adds.

Along with hundreds of experts seeking to secure and restore the cathedral, archaeologists have studied, sorted and inventoried these remains.

The archaeologist Dorothée Chaoui-Derieux rescues a forged nail from a sack of charred rubble. It will later be studied by specialists. © RFI/Lucile Gimberg

“Among all the finds during these two years, I remember in particular having found an element of the clock of Notre-Dame; we also extracted some bells. The first nails for example, the medieval nails, which are very large, very well forged,” says Olivier Puaux, archaeologist at the Ministry of Culture.

Lead contamination

Another danger was caused by the lead, which was used for the collapsed roof. It is extremely harmful to the human body, and now its content is much higher than the norm both in the cathedral itself and in the surrounding areas. One nongovernmental organization even sued the authorities, which, in its opinion, failed to adequately deal with the problem.

Lead from the collapsed roof and spire had to be collected and put into special protective bags.

Nevertheless, measures are being taken. In order to enter the territory of the cathedral or even the construction site surrounding it, it is imperative to be in protective clothing, a helmet and boots. And before leaving, everyone, both workers and visitors, must take a shower without fail. During the coronavirus pandemic, everyone is measured at the entrance, and they need to wear a mask. Lead contamination is associated with much greater additional difficulties. Source 1, Source 2

MICHAEL WALSH is a journalist, broadcaster and the author of WITNESS TO HISTORY, RISE OF THE SUN WHEEL (Paperback / Ebook), TROTSKY’S WHITE NEGROESMEGACAUST,  DEATH OF A CITY MY LAST TESTAMENT LET GOD JUDGE ME,  THE ALL LIES INVASION (Paperback / Ebook), THE All LIES INVASION II (Paperback / Ebook)Odyssey Adolf Hitler, SLAUGHTER OF A DYNASTY, REICH AND WRONG, THE RED BRIGANDS, RANSACKING THE REICH, SCULPTURES OF THE THIRD RIECH: ARNO BREKER AND REICH SCULPTORS, SCULPTURES OF THE THIRD REICH VOLUME II Josef Thorak and Reich Sculptors, SCULPTURES OF THE THIRD REICH VOLUME III Porcelain and Reich Sculptors,  and other book titles. These best-selling books are essential for the libraries of informed readers.

MICHAEL WALSH is a journalist, author, and broadcaster. His 70 books include best-selling THE LAST GLADIATORS Fiancés of Death (Paperback / Ebook); AFRICA’S KILLING FIELDS: African Victims of the Liberal-Left (Paperback / Ebook); RHODESIA’S DEATH EUROPE’S FUNERAL European to Wall Street Colonialism (Paperback / Ebook); RISE OF THE SUN WHEEL (Paperback / Ebook), THE ALL LIES INVASION I, THE All LIES INVASION II,  and many other book titles. These illustrated best-selling books are essential for the libraries of informed readers.

The author’s books are available for purchase by visiting his website BOOKSTORE  link.

We are in debt to our donors who finance the distribution of spin-free real news and fearlessly expressed views.


MEGACAUST Michael Walsh. R. J. Rummel,   Power Kills: Genocide and Mass Murder (Journal of Peace Research) 164 million people have been killed in cold blood this century by Capitalist / Communist governments. 

SLAUGHTER OF A DYNASTY  Michael Walsh. Covertly sponsored by Wall Street banks and the White House Bolsheviks seized Tsarist Russia (regime change). For 36 years news of Bolshevik atrocities and 70 million martyred Christians were censored by Western media.  Lavishly illustrated, this expose reveals secrets removed from Western history books.

When ordering the book contact Michael Walsh by email to receive your signed copy.

KEEP REAL NEWS OPEN: Donate by using Western Union, MoneyGram, Ria, registered mail or contact Michael Walsh: or 2) Follow our blog. 3) Share our stories and 4) buy our author-signed books. 5) Receive free newsletters by writing subscribe to

BOOKS THAT CHALLENGE, INSPIRE, INFORM Michael Walsh, ‘Writer of the Year’ with a strong global following. Nearly 70 interesting Amazon book titles famed for changing and improving lives. CLICK TO VIEW

New stories every day!


1 reply »

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s