Although the foundation stone was laid in 1861, a disagreement between the architect John Bourke and the parish priest, in effect the client, meant that work stopped. Work began again in 1867 to designs by William Caldbeck and completed in 1872. Caldbeck also designed the Bank of Ireland bank in Moate among other commissions in Westmeath during the mid nineteenth-century.
“The foundation stone of a new Roman Catholic church, as above designated, was laid on the 27th ult., and the building which will be erected after designs by Mr. John Bourke, architect, is provided to be cruciform on plan, with nave, aisles, transepts, apsidal chancel, side chapels, baptistry, tower, etc; the dimensions in clear being 110 feet by 53 feet by 68 feet across transept; height to apex on roof 60 feet. The Norman style is observed throughout, and the nave is to be separated from aisles by lofty arches springing from cylindrical columns with characteristic capitals and bases. At intersections of transepts and chancel with nave, four great arches are introduced which will have a very imposing effect. Light will be obtained for the nave and aisles by semicircular headed doublet windows in clerestory and flank walls; and for the transepts through triple windows; the chancel and western gable being also perforated. A tower with a spire rising to a height of 105 feet from ground line will terminate one of the aisles. We have very few good examples of this style in Ireland, and are glad to see symptoms of its revival” The Irish Builder, November 1 1861.