A Family At Harvest Time In Ardmore, County Waterford

A Family At Harvest Time In Ardmore, County Waterford

Step into heritage. A time gone by. And, meet a familly at harvest time. A special thanks to Tom Power and all the Power family for sharing these truly evocative pictures that remember a time of community at harvest time.

Power To The People – A Family At Harvest Time In Ardmore

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Richie Power, Willie(?) Redmond, Mike-ee Power, "Nedeen" Foley and Mickil Hurton.

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MARY 1953
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Heaven Sent Adventures

Heaven Sent Adventures

Craving adventures?

We’ve got the perfect coastal hideaway.

Spectacular views. Hidden coves. Fine dining. The best coffee stops.

And, 100% jam-packed with adventures.

But how to create your perfect adventure?

Not an easy task when, for most, it has to feel “just right”.

Surfing

Adventures Are Always Personal

It’s your time now.

To do what you love.

By yourself or with others.

And, to do what might widen your boundaries.

Then you can experience something you like and be enveloped by it.

Soak it up. The adventure is beginning.

Ardmore Adventures is a shining star in the Irish outdoor activity scene. Founded in January 2009, it has swiftly built a reputation for its bespoke adventures for individuals and groups of all ages. This is mainly down to passion exhibited by its founder Ronan O’ Connor.

And, its the the majestic backdrop of Ardmore’s coastline, where all adventures are realised, that is also heaven sent.

There is nowhere finer along Ireland’s Celtic Coast to experience your escape.

Go exploring and you’ll find marvels to amaze you, architecture from another age, and a rock that has floated across a sea and was owned by a Saint. This is Ardmore along Ireland’s Ancient East and you’re wandering through 5,000 years of history.

As anyone visiting Ardmore will know, since Ronan set up Ardmore Adventures, activity around Ardmore Bay has gone from strength to strength.

Ronan creates perfect, uncomplicated coastal adventures for every budget.

The Secret Art Of Memory Making

Wonderful bespoke experiences have been the hallmark of Ardmore Adventures. With a dedicated team of professionals you’ll be able to plan your adventure from your own home or join some of the scheduled bookings already planned.

If you’re interested in kayaking, stand-up paddle-boarding or canoeing, you’ll be able to explore the stunning Ardmore Coastline at your ease. Get up close with the wildlife as you visit caves, sea stacks and the wreck of the Samson Barge. Experience the Old Copper mines and play some fun games along the way.

For the romantics out there, try moonlight kayaking and simply glide around Ardmore Bay.

For those that prefer adventures out of the water why not try rock climbing, abseiling, archery, caving and hill walking.

Adrenaline junkies will also enjoy canyoning and coasteering where every adventure is unique.

Ronan also runs a wide array of summer camps, team building activities, instructor training and lifeguard training.

From kayaking to rock climbing, your adventures in Ireland’s Ancient East’s Ardmore will be fun and varied. Choose one that suits you!

Find out what adventures you’d like to do in Ardmore. Discover what you want. And, let Ronan and his staff of 6 experienced professionals create your dream adventure with you.

Contact Details
Phone Number: 083-3743889
Ardmore Adventures
Main Street
Ardmore, Co. Waterford
Email:info@ardmoreadventures.ie
Website: www.ardmoreadventures.ie

Stand Up Paddleboarding

Faces In The Crowd

Faces In The Crowd

Spend one night in Ardmore and you’ll be rewarded with memories forever.

Here, are the wonderful pictures taken by Dr Murphy. All taken on one night many moons ago in Ardmore.

It’s like everyone turned around just to say hello.

A warm thank you to Margaret Murphy and her family for letting us post her fathers pictures here.

Faces In The Crowd

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Behind Every Door Is A Story

Behind Every Door Is A Story

Behind every door is a story. And, every window a perspective.

Way back in 2009, there was a brief discussion between Mary Moloney as chairperson of Ardmore Tidytowns and Michael Reilly. This then led to an email exchange about the history of Main Street in Ardmore with James Quain. James then wrote a lovely draft piece on Main Street that we include below. We also include news of an exciting project and a little warning from a poem about protecting our Main Street.

Like so many villages in Ireland, Ardmore Main Street lies at the heart of our community. Behind each doorway is an untold story of the generations who were born, worked and even died here. All these stories form our shared history that has gently evolved through the years. As you explore our beautiful Main Street remember that the street also stores the names if all that tranverse it. Whether these names are past or present, resident or tourist they all combine and continue to shape our community.

MAIN STREET, ARDMORE

James T Quain 29 / 7 / 09

A street may be defined as a broad road within a settlement and lined with houses on both sides. The word street is derived from the Latin strata meaning a paved way. The Main Street is the principal street Ardmore and defines the linear form of the village. It is in fact the only street – all the other ‘ways’ are roads and lanes.

It seems that the term main street was an accepted statement of fact as there is no evidence that it was ever officially named. In Slater’s Directory of Munster (1895) the address of Michael Ahearn’s Hotel, Quinn’s Bakery and the various grocers and publicans are all given as Main Street. The arrival of public utilities such as Water Supply and particularly Electricity in 1954 led to the appearance of many familiar items of street furniture including water pumps & troughs and street lighting. This all served to consolidate and enhance its position as the main street.

The history of Main Street is not simple, made up as it is of individual householders. It is however bound up with the history of Ardmore in general and farming in particular down through the centuries. A few examples will explain this:

Main Street may originally have been a road linking St Declan’s Road / Botahr na Trinse to the sea and perhaps to the early settlement consisting of a crannog/lake dwelling – around 500 AD in early Christian times, to put a very rough date on it. Being on the low ground i.e. to the north of the ‘great height’ of Ardmore, made it suitable for building on later.

The first stone-built house on Main Street was probably ‘Straw Cottage’ – Mgt Murphy’s thatched house. The house and garden are part of Farrangarret but are detached from the main part of the townland and instead form an island within the townland of Duffcarrick. Farrangarret means Garret’s farm so this may have been the farmhouse residence of Garret Fitzgerald who was farming here in 1654. Most of the villagers however were tenant farmers living in very poor conditions. In 1841 Mr and Mrs S. C. Hall described Ardmore as ‘a miserable village containing no houses but that of the rector, above the rank of a cabin’.

The ‘open field’ system of farming allowed for crop rotation and was practiced in Ardmore from medieval times up to the 19th century. Strips of land were allocated within very large open fields to ensure that each farmer / villager had a share of good and bad land. When the Odell Estate was put up for auction in 1893 many houses in the village were still held in conjunction with land in Dysert – the last traces of the system. Johnny Fitzgerald’s house (now owned by Paddy Carleton) was an example of this and threshings were held in the backyard into the 1950s. So the village of Ardmore was a farming community during all that time.

For well over 100 years Main Street has been a mix of residential and commercial properties. Various places of interest can be noted as one wanders down Main Street:
Thatched Houses incl. Straw Cottage
Post Office (4th location)
White Horses Restaurant – site of former RIC Barracks
Community / Village Hall
Ardmore Hotel (Mick Ahearn and later Wm Harris
Old Forge & Banding Stone (former Post Office & restaurant)
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Some Exciting News

Jumping ahead to 2016, we are fortunate that Ardmore Tidy Towns are engaged in a great project to celebrate the 1916 commemorations. They are seeking to publish the names of all the residents of Main Street during 1916. With the help of John Tierney of Eachtra, and a member of The Ardmore Grange Heritage Group, local historians Tommy Mooney and Noel Rooney and under the dutiful coordination of Sheila Rooney, this project sounds like it will be a great success. Waterford Council is also grant aiding this initiative.

Family names now associated with the Main Street include:
Power, Harty, Fitzgerald, Dywer, Moloney, McCarthy, Keever, Quain, Carlton, Stilwell, Reilly, Quinn, Murphy, Hassett, Grady, Ahearn, Harris, O’ Brien, Mockler, Veale, Ward, Hanrahan, O’Shaughnessy, Gallagher, Crowley, Rooney, Mansfield, Moloneys, Wolsey’s, Griffin etc so if anyone has any knowledge relating to families who may have resided there at the start of the 20th Century. Please do pass on any information to Tidytowns.

We end with a warning from a poem by Sir John Betjeman about not preserving our past that we should all consider. Our beautiful main street has been fortunate to have not suffered at the hands of …

The Planster’s Vision

Cut down that timber! Bells, too many and strong,
Pouring their music through the branches bare,
From moon-white church-towers down the windy air
Have pealed the centuries out with Evensong.
Remove those cottages, a huddled throng!
Too many babies have been born in there,
Too many coffins, bumping down the stair,
Carried the old their garden paths along.

I have a Vision of The Future, chum,
The worker’s flats in fields of soya beans
Tower up like silver pencils, score on score:
And Surging Millions hear the Challenge come
From microphones in communal canteens
“No Right! No wrong! All’s perfect, evermore.”

From Religious Women’s Wells To Gráinseach

From Religious Women’s Wells To Gráinseach

If you like to peel back history, you’ve probably noticed that so often the focus of old articles is on Ardmore. But, we were delighted to find this journal article from 1841. Although it ends with a somber impression of the area, it is well worth exploring. It also gives some valuable information on Grange in Waterford.

It is an ordinance survey completed by a John O’ Donovan in 1841 and describing the antiquities of County Waterford.

“SITUATION. This Parish is situated in the Barony of Desies Within Drum and is bounded on the north, east and partly on the south by the Parish of Ardmore, and on the west by that of Kinsalebeg.

NAME. Is in Irish Gráinseach, meaning a granary or store house for corn where the farmers brought the tenth part of their corn for the use of the Clergy. Of the old Church of this Parish no part remains at present but the southeast corner and very small fragments of the side walls but from the foundations it can be ascertained that it was sixty feet in length and twenty feet in breadth. Its walls were three feet one inch in thickness and built of slate stones and lime and sand cement. Its graveyard is still in use but contains no monument of antiquity.

In the Townland of Baile Eileain or as it is anglicised Ballylane, there is a holy well called Tobernamanrialta (Tobar na mBan Riaghalta) i.e, the Religious Women’s Well, at which Stations were performed on the 15th of August. It is said to have been dedicated to the Blessed Virgin but it never bears her name.

There is nothing else of any antiquarian interest in this Parish.”

Grange Cementary In Waterford Ireland

What Lies Beneath? There’s A Lost Treasure In Ardmore Bay

What Lies Beneath? There’s A Lost Treasure In Ardmore Bay

Appearance can be deceptive.

At first glance, Ardmore Beach is like the other beautiful beaches along Ireland’s Ancient East.

Clean and crisp sands. It’s impossible not to be impressed.

But, when the tide is in, it seems like the sea is calling us to share something more.

And, yes there’s a secret on Ardmore Beach.

But what lies beneath?

What has almost forgotten?

What has no heritage signpost?

And, what is calling us?

Well, there’s a spot just by the bend in storm wall.

Right across from the Church.

It’s a section of the storm wall where you’ll see a kind-of step. You’ll know the place when you see it.

After mass, many of a “parliament” discussion even takes place there.

It’s easy to find.

Now, look out onto to the sand towards Curragh. And, you see a section below where it’s like there was an old bog.

And, that’s were our very own Crannog once stood.

Want to know more?

Well, we have a lovely article that discusses this lost treasure in Ardmore Bay.

It was first printed in 1895 in Volume 1 of the Journal of the Waterford and South East of Ireland Archaeological Society.

And, it was written by R. J. Ussher.

Note to the visitor, the road to Dungarvan that he mentions below is now replaced but it used to run parallel to the beach.

“The ordinary conditions of a crannoge,or stockaded island, are well known A small island or shoal was selected in a lake or marsh. A circle of oak piles was driven into it’; wattles were woven between these. The surface was heaped up with timber, peat, brambles, and other bulky materials. A hearth of stones was constructed on the centre of the enclosure, and a wooden house was built here. Access was usually obtained by a canoe. The tribe or family lived in this isolated fortification and carried on all the arts of life known to them.

Crannog In Ardmore Waterford

It fell to my lot to discover, in 1879, a crannoge under very peculiar circumstances. Its site being now covered by every tide. To the north of Ardmore village in this county the beach forty years ago ran approximately straight in a direction a little to the east of north, and the road to Dungarvan ran parallel to it. On leaving the village by this road one first crossed a small stream, beneath whose basin was an extensive bed of peat that ran out to low-watermark or beyond it. The road here traversed a great bank of shingle that had been piled by the sea upon the peat. Farther on the road rose upon a high bank of till, or boulder clay, which presented to the sea a high escarpment, Between the road and the escarpment stood a large school house and on the landward side of the road were a range of coastguard houses, Within my memory the sea has devoured the land here so rapidly that, first the schoolhouse, then the road, and then the coastguard houses have been successively washed away. The great accumulation of shingle between the coastguard houses and Ardmore was also removed, its vestiges being now much further inland. A tract of the peat upon which the shingle had been piled was thus laid bare, and in this I found the remains of the crannoge.

What took the eye was a double row of piles enclosing irregularly a space about ninety or a hundred feet in diameter. The upper ends of these piles had in most cases been broken, but the lower extremities, embedded in the peat from one to four feet deep, were all pointed as if by an axe. The piles in the outer circle sloped outwards and stood more closely together. Those in the inner row showed remains of having been wattled. A trench which I cut to a depth of nine ‘feet into the peat within the crannoge, showed that it was undisturbed without any artificial accumulation of materials such as were used to raise the surface of other crannoges. On the north-west side the piles of the outer row were wanting, but twenty feet outside the remaining inner row of piles there lay embedded in the peat remains of a large piece of wattling, as though some of the walls or partitions had been torn down and thrown there. This wattling consisted of squared and unworked upright stakes (now prostrated), with long wattles woven’ between them in and out. Here in connection with this wattling I found also embedded in the peat a piece of a beam of timber, cut off at one end, and having two mortices cut in it. The noticeable feature about this was that the rude cuts appeared to have been made by a storie celt, the rounded extremity of which had left its impressions on the cut surfaces. This mortised beam may have served for holding uprights or some other timbers of the crannoge structure. On the south-east side I also found between the two rows of piles a piece of flooring or wattling composed of rods nearly as thick as one’s fingers and as close together.

These gave the impression that they were not in situ, but a piece of some structure that had got embedded there.

On examining the surface of the peat in the interior of the crannoge enclosure it was found to bestudded with stakes, usually running in rows, which were broken off level with the surface from marine erosion. On digging some of them up their ends were found to have been pointed: Near the centre of the crannoge a large circle of these stakes could be partially traced, about twenty-six feet in diameter, and within this I found standing upright in the peat two split boards of oak fitted tightly together. Their upper ends had been worn ‘or broken off, being exposed to wind and wave, but the lower ends sunk in the peat were cut off square. It seems that these planks belonged to a house of wood like that which existed in the Co. Fermanagh crannoges, described by Mr. Wakeman, and the rows of stakes represent wattled walls of dwellings or partitions within the crannoge fortification. The peat surface in this case afforded an admirable base for such wattled structures.

It is painfully evident that in 1879 so much of the upper surface of the peat and what it contained had been washed away that nothing but the bare foundations of the crannoge remained. Nevertheless, a few objects were found in connection with it. I took out of the peat on the east side, outside the enclosure, a carved wooden handle such as might have belonged to a knife or spoon, while an Ardmore man, named Shaughnessy, discovered also in the peat a disc-shaped piece of wood having a hole pierced through its centre, round which hole the wood was thicker than outside this portion. I at first took it for a wooden wheel, but it has been suggested that it was more probably‘ the lid of a churn. A horse-shoe was also given me as having been found in the crannoge, having its internal margin shaped to suit the horse’s frog.

Others found there what they described as a hatchet and a bill-hook of iron, and Michael Foley, fisherman, when digging turf there, had found outside the crannoge, at a considerable depth in the white clay, what he called a cradle of green twigs, about four feet long, having a multitude of green leaves in it (leaves being wonderfully preserved in the peat). One can only conjecture that this may have been a wicker canoe.

In and around the crannoge many bones were found by myself and others embedded in the peat, and stained of its dark colour. These were broken but not cut, and represented the usual animals found in raths and crannoges, red deer, ox, goat, pig and ass. At the present day nearly all vestiges of the crannoge have been washed away by the rapid inroads of the sea.

What strikes one at first about the site of this crannoge is that it must have been formerly protected from the approach of the sea as well as elevated above the tidal level, for its present level below high-water mark would have been subject to flooding even in a marsh or lagoon at some distance from the sea.

That the crannoge must have been originally constructed in a lagoon or marsh seems obvious, such being the usual site for crannoges, and considering the rapid inroads that the sea has made within my own memory, it is reasonable to conclude that centuries ago Ardmore Bay was filled up to a much greater extent than recently, and a protecting sand bank may have enclosed its mouth, like the warren at Tramore or the Cunnigar at Dungarvan Bay, leaving inside a spacious lagoon or morass.
And we need not assume the subsidence of the whole coast-line to account for the crannoge having become depressed below the tidal level. The bed of peat on which it stood is now over ten feet thick in places. This is a highly compressible material, and was once no doubt much thicker, its surface, on which the structure was built, having then been above the level of any tide.

What took place was probably this – the invading sea advancing towards it year after year brought along a great accumulation of shingle, such as I remember to have been heaped up on the spot forty years ago. The enormous weight of such a mass of stone would have been quite sufficient to compress the peat and sink it beneath the sea-level in time. The continuing advance of the sea at last removed the shingle itself, and laid bare again the peat stratum and what remained of the crannoge.

I had the advantage of visiting Ardmore last year with Professor Boyd-Dawkins, and that eminent geologist countenanced the above views, stating that it was thus that the change had probably taken place. My earlier researches in the crannoge were guided by Mr. G. H. Kinahan, that veteran Irish geologist, whose previous knowledge of crannoges and powers of trained observation were invaluable to me.

The accompanying sketch of the crannoge was kindly taken in 1879 by Miss Blacker.”

We also include another article on the Crannog in Ardmore for your enjoyment

Meet Some Of The Great Storytellers Of Ardmore

Meet Some Of The Great Storytellers Of Ardmore

Get up close to a story from Ardmore’s past. And, read a tale of how Eddie Mooney and the other members found a new way to put Ardmore on the map. And, how they fought to become National Champions.

Use the options below to navigate your way through this wonderful story.

Unearth The Skeleton Of Admore’s Round Tower

Unearth The Skeleton Of Admore’s Round Tower

What lies beneath?

It’s a question that we’ve all probably asked and maybe we’re all treasure hunters in our dreams.

But, what if a little digging could you tell you more about what lies above the ground?

Well, here’s a bit of history that proves this point perfectly.

We include an extract from The Gentleman’s Magazine: Volume 173 – January 1, 1843
The tower of Ardmore, in the county of Waterford, stands on the coast near the entrance of Youghal Bay; it is above 100 feet in height, 45 in circumference, 15 in diameter, divided by projecting bands into four stories at unequal distances; the door is 15 feet from the ground; the projecting bands are a remarkable feature, and assimi late it in appearance with the Indian towers of Boglipoor. Relative to an excavation made in the summer of 1841 at this tower, Sir W. Betham quotes the following correspondence.

Read more

The Original Magnificant Seven That Planted Faith In Ireland

The Original Magnificant Seven That Planted Faith In Ireland

For those that love to peel back the layers of history, exploring Ardmore’s past is a wonderful opportunity to experience monastic life in a small Irish village.

You are invited to walk in the footsteps of our ancestors and experience the histories in the very places that they happened.

We include this short piece about the life of St Declan from The chronicle of Ireland, by Henry Marleburrough; continued from the collection of Doctor Meredith Hanmer, in the yeare 1571. Dublin, Printed by the Society of stationers, M.DCXXXIII. Read more

Discover The Thatched Cottages Of Ardmore And Grange, Waterford

Discover The Thatched Cottages Of Ardmore And Grange, Waterford

When you visit Ardmore, you’ll be struck by the diversity and uniqueness of the houses that colour this small village.

In particular, you’ll see the two fine thatched cottages that proudly frame the Main Street.

But, thatched cottages have become less visible in the landscape of Ireland today.

Once they defined a heritage whereas now they sadly reflect a passing tradition.

Thatched Cottages In Ardmore Waterford

A Moment In Time

However, the branch of the local ICA understood the importance of celebrating this skilled work. They also saw that the numbers of thatches were in decline.

That’s why they undertook a survey of the thatched cottage in Ardmore and Grange Waterford that we present here.

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We include some more images of thatched cottages as collected as part of this research.

  1. Mrs Connery, Rath
  2. Hallorans, Rath (Hubbards Cross) – Spire in back yard.
  3. unknown (do let us know if you can identify this cottage)
  4. Lickey Bridge
  5. Geogh
  6. Lynch
  7. Lincoln
  8. Geogh

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The main picture of this post is of a painting known as Mary Cuddihy’s Cottage By Isadell O Dell (1871 – 1943). This cottage was identified by Martin Troy in the report as being in Lower Curragh.