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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MARY 1953
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Richie Power, Willie(?) Redmond, Mike-ee Power, "Nedeen" Foley and Mickil Hurton.

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WILLIE 1955
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R POWER 50 51
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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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Ardmore – When Submarines Laid In Wait

Ardmore – When Submarines Laid In Wait

Over the years of WWI and WWII, many ships fell victim to the destructive power of submarine attack along the coastline of Ireland. And, nowadays we look out to sea enjoying the coastlines and understandably never think that once a powerful fleet hunted their prey and the many British warships and shipping vessels that would be torpedoed.

On hearing of these tragic stories our minds naturally are drawn to the sailors that died or were left for dead in our waters. But there are also fascinating stories of the sailors inside the submarines. What was life like? What images did they see? Well, fortunately we have located some artwork that vividly presents life for one such vessel, U-53 during WWI. A submarine that was active coast of Ardmore. And, which attacked and destroyed The Folia on March 11th 1917, with the loss of seven lives.

This artwork is the work of Claus Friedrich Bergen. In 1917, he was on-board the U-53, commanded by Hans Rose.

We believe that this artwork speaks volumes.

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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.”

Get Inspired By The Beauty Of Ardmore’s Round Tower

Get Inspired By The Beauty Of Ardmore’s Round Tower

Step into Ardmore’s Golden Age of Saints and Scholars and visit the Round Tower of Ardmore. Trace the steps where Ireland’s pioneering saints and monks wrote some of the world’s greatest manuscripts. And, how they spread their learning and spirituality throughout a Europe locked in the Dark Ages.

Be inspired, as all visitors are, by the wonderful Round Tower of Ardmore. And, let your imagination take flight in the shadow of this tower as it stands watching forever out over Ardmore Bay.

Ardmore’s Round Tower, built in the 12th century, is one of the best preserved examples in Ireland. Round Towers were built by the monks of early Irish monasteries as places of refuge in case the monastery was attacked. If the monks suspected that the monastery was in danger, they would move all their valuable books and treasures into the tower and pull up the wooden ladder. Though hostilities against monasteries increased with the Viking raids in the 9th century, monks were often in as much danger from native Irish chieftains.

Ardmore Round Tower

The Round Tower ranks highly in Ireland in terms of archeological importance. And, fortunately, the Ardmore tower is in an excellent state of preservation.

The tower is about 100 feet in height by 15 feet in diameter at the base. The door, placed at the height of 16 feet from the ground, measures 6 feet high by 27 inches (tapering to 23 inches) in width, while the wall, measured at the door, is 40 inches thick.

Two particular features of our tower are so remarkable as to be, perhaps, unique.

First, the series of sculptured corbel stones which project between the floors on the inside. Second, the four projecting belts of masonry which divide the tower in five zones or sections exteriorly.

As the tower is at present unprovided with lofts or ladders, access to the summit is impossible.

Excavations made at the base of the tower disclosed the fact that the latter was erected possibly in an already existing cemetery. Skeletons were also found below the foundations. These were in such a position that the interment of the bodies must have been long previous to the building ‘of the tower. Read more about the The Skeletons Of Ardmore Round Tower.

As our tower has characteristics that are unique, so too it can boast a history unique in the case of a Round Towers. It was besieged in 1642 by English troops under Lords Dungarvan and Broghil. The garrison eventually surrendered and all 120 of them, except such as were required for purposes of exchange, were summarily executed.

Read fascinating eye-witness account of the http://www.ardmorewaterford.com/the-siege-of-ardmore-1642/

The Poetry Of Fishermen Pulling In Their Nets

The Poetry Of Fishermen Pulling In Their Nets

Transport yourself to a time when fishing shaped the lives of the people of Ardmore.

A time of comradery, hard work, and even beauty.

Compare life nowadays to the more simpler existences of fishermen.

Experience how it felt when they cast their nets for spratts in Ardmore. Enjoy the fruits of this description of fishing in Ardmore Waterford circa 1845 and how it conjures up an image of fisherman working hard on the seas.

“Look over the sea; the boats are out fishing. How pretty those look on the horizon whose white sails have caught the sun! There go others rowing out, with their nets heaped up in the stern. Read more

Walk In The Footsteps Of Danes, Druids, and Saints

Walk In The Footsteps Of Danes, Druids, and Saints

Take a break. Forget your problems. And, just sit back and soak in the beauty of the Round Tower in Ardmore.

Explore this wonderful location at your own pace. And, enjoy a setting that has inspired people for 100’s of years.

As you walk around the Tower, you’ll not be surprsied to learn that this Round Tower is also shrounded in mystery.

So, who built it?

For what purpose?

When you get up close to the stories of Ardmore’s past, you’ll hear tales of druids, danes and saints as recounted by researchers in such inspiring ways.

Take in the passion of their writings as they explore the purpose of Ardmore’s Round Tower.

In The history of Ireland, from the first colonization of the country, down to the period of the English invasion, comprehending the topography of the scenes of battles, and memorable events, as well as a review of the rise and progress of Irish literature and the fine arts … By George Pepper (1835) discusses:

“It is time we should now speak of the round towers, which are, 
in a manner, peculiar to Ireland, and which have occupied the ingenuity of so many learned antiquarians to explain their original use. 
Some have attributed their erection to the Danes, who are supposed 
to have used them as telegraphs, by placing a light in the aperture 
on their convex roof; others say, among whom is the learned Vallancey, that they were built by the Milesian Druids, as fire-altars; 
but Dr. Milner very justly rejects this opinion, by observing, ” that 
there was no occasion of carrying them up to so great a height as 
130 feet.”

Ardmore Round Tower In Waterford

A third system is, that they were watch-towers, raised 
in times of intestine warfare, to prevent an enemy from taking the 
dun of the chief by coup de main; another hypothesis is that of Molyneaux and Dr. Ledwich, who maintain with a great force of 
reason, and. an air of strong probability, that they were belfries to 
the churches, near which they are situated. To this well founded 
conjecture we subscribe, because there is not one of these towers in 
Ireland which is not quite contiguous to a religious edifice; a fact 
that sustains the probability that the round towers were belfries, 
and built simultaneously with their adjoining churches. Smith 
brings another proof to the support of this opinion, in his history of 
Waterford published in 1746, when he tells us, “that there was no 
doubt but the round tower of Ardmore was used originally for a 
belfry, there being towards the top not only four opposite windows 
to let out the sound, but also three pieces of oak still remaining, on 
which the bell was hung; there were also two channels cut in the 
sill of the door, where the rope came out, the ringer standing below 
the door, on the outside.

It is also to be observed, that the doors 
of these tower’s are uniformly elevated fifteen feet above their base, 
which has led to the conclusion that the Christian pastor was in the 
habit of addressing the people from these high vestibules. It is the 
opinion of antiquarians, that these round towers were built in the 
sixth century, which has given birth to an argument, that, in that 
case, they could not be originally intended for belfries, because bells 
were not introduced into the Christian churches until the seventh 
century; but this argument will vanish before the historical fact, 
that during the pontificate of Pope Stephen, the congregations were 
called to church by the sound of trumpets; so that the Irish round 
towers might be trumpet-stands before the invention of bells. The 
late Dr. Milner, it is true, worked hard to subvert this theory; he 
says ” that none of these towers are large enough for a single bell, 
of a moderate size, to swing round in it.”

Now, with all due 

”The round towers of Ireland,” says an Irish writer of historical learning and 
antique research, ‘are great puzzlers to the antiquarians. Quires of paper, as tall 
as a tower, have been covered with as much ink as might form a Liffey, in 
accounting for their origin and use.”

“In despair of being able to ascertain at 
what period, and by whom they were constructed,” says Moore, “our antiquaries 
are reduced to the task of conjecturing the purposes of their construction. That 
they may have been appropriated to religious uses, in the early ages of the church, 
appears highly probable from the policy adopted by the first Christians, in all 
countries, of enlisting in the service of the new faith the religious habits and associations of the old. It is possible, therefore, that they might, at some period, 
have been used as stations for pilgrims, — for to this day, it is certain that the 
prayers said at stations, are called Turkish or pilgrim prayers.”

We follow this account with a short article from the Proceeding of the Royal Irish Academy entitled The Round Tower of Ardmore. By Hodder M. Westropp, Esq. April 8, (1867)

“The summit of the cone of the tower of Ardmore was formed of two stones fitted together. There is scarcely any trace of carving or sculpture on them, they are so worn by the weather and defaced by time.

On the side of the larger stone is a kind of groove or fluting, very perfect for about six inches; a corresponding ornamentation was evidently on the other side. On the upper part is a slight projection, which originally may have been a carved ornament. The immediate top bears evident traces of something having been broken off.

The lower inner portion of each stone is hollowed out into a kind of angle, evidently to meet a corresponding rise in the platform stone they rested upon. No iron bolt or rivet was used to firm them in their position. The two stones fitted together, and formed the apex of the conical top of the tower. Some of the old people of Ardmore recollect seeing a cross on the top of it, which, it is said, was shot off some forty years ago by a gentleman firing at a crow perched on the top: Croker makes mention of it as being like a crutch.

This very probably was the remaining portion of an Irish wheel cross, such as is seen over the door of the tower at Antrim.

We hope that when you visit Ardmore’s Round Tower that you’ll be inspired, as they were, by it’s life and people. And, that you’ll celebrate it’s enduring legacy in this seaside village.

Unlock The Secrets Of Ardmore Cathedral

Unlock The Secrets Of Ardmore Cathedral

Ardmore Catherdral

No visit to Ardmore is complete without a visit to the ruins of Ardmore Cathedral.

Located just a short stroll from the Main Street in the heart of Ardmore Village, the site was formally recognised as a Cathedral in 1170.

It underwent several phases of construction over the centuries and the present building showcases various periods and styles.

The chancel is the oldest part of the cathedral and dates from the 9th Century.

The nave is from late 12th Century work.

And, this feature which perhaps will capture a visitor’s attention the most. The arcading of the nave is indeed an extraordinary feature of this ruin. Arcading, is in fact a common characteristic of Romanesque churches on the continent but is comparatively rare in Irish churches of the same date.

Further works on the south side-wall and the east gable were completed of the 14th century.

The arch, of late 12th or early 13th century character, is well deserving of more closer inspection. Remarkably high bases (56 inches) from which the columns spring, and the lightness of the arch above, lend to the whole feel of this wonderful space.

Standing within the choir the visitor will not fail to notice the two ogham inscribed pillar stones in the north-west and south – west angles respectively. One of them was discovered built into eastern gable of the little oratory known as Relig Deglain. A third ogham stone, now in the National Museum, was found built into the nave wall of the cathedral.

The most unusual feature is the arcade – a series of sculptures on the outside of west wall telling stories from the bible.

Although many of the upper panels are worn – you can just make out the Archangel Michael weighing souls.

Included in the lower panels are Adam and Eve, the Adoration of the Magi, and the Judgment of Solomon.

Learn more about Ardmore Cathedral

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