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Castlepollard - Westmeath - The Square

Early photo image

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Photo Details

  • County: Westmeath
  • Town: Castlepollard
  • Scene: The Square
  • Date: 1910 (estimate)

Specification 

  • Digitally remastered
  • 10' x 8' printed on quality photo paper, larger sizes also available
  • Also available mounted & framed, ask for details
  • Colour images can be printed in black & white if preferred.
  • Read about Castlepollard below

Castlepollard

Castlepollard - (Irish: Cionn Torc, meaning 'Hill of the Boars') also, (Baile na gCros in meaning 'Town of the Cross') is a small town with a population of under 1000 in the north of County Westmeath in Ireland, near Mullingar.

History

The Pollard family built Castlepollard in the late 17th century under a Charter of Charles II. The town was well laid out, with an extensive triangular green at its centre. The green is still surrounded by 19th-century buildings today. A sculpture on the square depicts a scene from the famous legend of the Children of Lir, along with a plaque outlining the story in several languages. The setting of the legend is Lough Derravaragh, just a few kilometres south of the town. Amongst the many Ringforts in the surrounding high ground, there are two ancient forts of special interest, one in particular, named Randoon, in the area called Ranaghan, south west of Lough Lene, and the second on the principal island of Lough Lene, Turgesius' Island (named after the viking leader who sojourned there on occasions and who is reputed to have conquered Dublin and Clomacnoise).

Castlepollard has two churches; one Roman Catholic and Church of Ireland. The building that currently serves as St. Peter's Centre was originally a notorious home for unmarried mothers run by the Sisters of the Sacred Heart.

Commerce / Industry

Mergon International, a manufacturer of moulded parts, is one of the main businesses in the town. The town has quite a small retail base, consisting of a handful of small shops (including Brady's & D&A Moran's) and a number of pubs, including Jeffrey Neas' pub Town and Country (locally known as the 'T&C') and the Pollard Arms Hotel.

One of the best known residents of Castlepollard is the prominent businessman and TD for Westmeath, Donie Cassidy.

Sport / Education

The town is located in the stronghold of Westmeath hurling and its local rivals are the Lough Lene Gaels and Ringtown hurling club. While Castlepollard tends to favour hurling over Gaelic football,there is also a Gaelic football club in the area. The main section of Westmeath's Taekwondo network is based in Castlepollard.