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Effort to save Athens’ oldest Byzantine church

For the first time in 40 years, efforts are under way to restore and promote the Holy Church of Saint Nicholas Rangavas, Athens’ oldest Byzantine church.

The Culture Ministry has approved funding for restoration studies aimed at preserving the 11th-century church, once part of the Rangavas family palace at the foot of the Acropolis in the Plaka neighbourhood.

Once the studies are approved by the Central Archaeological Council, the estimated €2 million restoration project will commence.

Archaeologist Ioanna Koloka told Kathimerini the passage of time, increasing humidity, and the accumulation of candle soot have caused gradual wear and tear to the Church building, its wall paintings, and its altar over the years.