When writing of Waterford architect John Roberts here on Monday, notice was made that his death occurred in 1796 when, at the age of 84, he fell asleep in the city’s unfinished Roman Catholic cathedral – which he had designed – and caught a chill. Four years earlier, Waterford Corporation had been presented with a petition from members of that faith requesting that a plot of land be provided so that a suitable place of worship might be built, more than three and a half decades before all Penal legislation was reformed. The site given was that already occupied by a Catholic chapel, but the new cathedral occupied much more space than had its predecessor. As mentioned, Roberts was the architect responsible, as he had been 20 years before for the Church of Ireland’s new cathedral in the same city. The two buildings share certain characteristics, borrowed from James Gibbs, such as the great line of Corinthian columns running down the nave. Also like Christ Church, it has been subject to alterations (not least the addition of a new facade in the late 19th century) and no longer looks exactly as Roberts intended, but these two cathedrals are unique in having been designed by the same architect, the father of two siblings whose common characteristics cannot be denied.