Heritage week: Behind the scenes in Newcastle West

The magnificent restored structure of the Desmond Banqueting Hall  dominates The Square in my local town, Newcastle West, Co Limerick. I went behind the façade this week and discovered some hidden treasure! There seems to have been a castle in this location since the 11th or 12th century. The restored buildings are 15th century and are the only surviving components of what was  an extensive castle complex.

DSCF1731

The familiar view from The Square

DSCF1733The astonishing area that is out of sight

DSCF1732The Halla Mór (The Big Hall).When we first came to this area over 30 years ago, there was a timber merchants yard in front of this beautiful building. At one time, according to the very knowledgeable guide, the local cinema was located in this building.  It is never too late to rediscover our heritage!

DSCF1737 - CopyThe restored  banqueting Hall is now on two levels and is used for local functions. This is the rear view.

DSCF1741The top floor is used for recitals, lectures and for cultural events .

If passing near Newcastle West, do drop in – admission is free and the guide is a mine of information!

 

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3 Comments

Filed under Ireland, Irish Heritage, Irish History

3 responses to “Heritage week: Behind the scenes in Newcastle West

  1. We often miss things if we don’t take a second look. It is beautiful inside!

  2. Hi SV, I just love your blog and have nominated it for a Sunshine Award. I hope you accept and enjoy working with it. You can find all the details here: http://socialbridge.wordpress.com/2013/08/23/sunshine-and-celebration-gatherings-from-ireland-229/

  3. Looks beautiful – whoever has funded the restorations (Heritage Ireland?) ought to be proud.

    I look upon the town with new eyes, my previous preconceptions having been coloured by the two grimy English Newcastles 🙂

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