Two years since the terrible fire that practically destroyed Paris" Notre-Dame Cathedral and also the Gothic icon has still not been completely secured.

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But the rector the the 850-year-old building has told the is confident that milestone will shortly be achieved.

The blaze, which damaged out in the early evening the April 15, 2019, stunned France and others watching on television from roughly the world.

It destroyed the cathedral"s roof and also toppled the spire however firefighters conserved the key bell towers and outer wall surfaces from collapse.

"Two year ago, when I stand on the parvis, girlfriend are completely stunned through this fire," Monsignor Patrick Chauvet, the cathedral"s rector, said

"It is a spiritual, physical, emotional test. You check out your cathedral burning. You are unable to carry out something without just trusting the firefighters.

"And now, 2 years later, that is hope the keeps me going."

The Cathedral of Notre Dame is pictured top top the night of the 2nd anniversary of its fire, in Paris, Wednesday, April 14, 2021Credit: AP

Chauvet included the actual restoration project might start official by the end of the year, and he hopes mass deserve to be hosted in 2024.

French chairman Emmanuel Macron has set that year together his goal for finishing the interior restoration because that the cathedral, in heat with once Paris will organize the Olympics.

Securing the cathedral has actually been a necessary however costly an initial step the the process, estimated at €160 million. It involved removing the stained glass windows, checking the gargoyles, removing rubble and also installing security nets in the choir to record falling stones.

It has actually been complicated by scaffolding that had actually been put up for remodeling works prior to the blaze in ~ the tourist attraction. The fire melted the scaffolding, leaving about 200-tonnes that tangled net of charred metal to transaction with.

Brand brand-new scaffolding has now been set up so the the problem of the vaults can be studied closely.

"It"s impressive because inside you have a woodland of scaffolding which goes all the means to the vaults, the full height that the cathedral," said Chauvet.

"There is one elevator that allows you to go up i beg your pardon is an particularly sight because I had never watched the vaults therefore closely."

A grab indigenous a video recorded by AFP top top April 9, 2021 shows home builders working ~ above the repair of the Notre-Dame Cathedral, in Paris, damaged through the April 15, 2019 fire.ANTOINE BOUTHIER/AFP

But the project has run right into its same share of problems, with job-related stopped briefly for lead air pollution in the summer of 2019 and also for the COVID-19 pandemic in the feather of 2020.

The melt of the spire and roof resulted in lead contamination of the site and also surrounding areas. Now, a non-profit organization has filed a complaint that the command contamination and risk to human being in the area were no adequately controlled by authorities.

Chauvet claims that beginning the building area because that the cathedral, meanwhile, is greatly regulated.

People accessing the website wear safety clothes, a helmet and also boots. You have to take a shower as soon as exiting the construction site because of the lead.

As lengthy as the cathedral is still contaminated "we will have to do every this protocol i m sorry takes a lengthy time," he added.

While the COVID-19 crisis additionally caused some delays, the hasn"t been too lot of an obstacle. Anyone wears a mask and also has a temperature check when they acquire to the site.

As because that the future that the project, because that Chauvet, it"s optimistic as promised donations have actually panned the end so far.

"I want to get in the future and say to myself below is this monument which is a masterpiece the the middle Ages, and we saved it," that said.

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"We are in the procedure of rebuilding it identically, i m sorry is because that me a resource of hope and joy."

Every weekday in ~ 1900 CEST, Uncovering Europe brings you a europe story that goes beyond the headlines. Download the app to gain an alert for this and also other break news. It"s accessible on Apple and also Android devices.

Video editor • Kristina Harazim

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