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Kilbeggan - Westmeath - Lr. Main St

Old irish photo

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Photo Details

  • County: Westmeath
  • Town: Kilbeggan
  • Scene: Lower Main St
  • Date: 1910 (estimate)


  • 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 Kilbeggan below


Kilbeggan (Irish: Cill Bheagáin) is a town located on the River Brosna in County Westmeath, Ireland. The N6 and N52 roads intersect in the town.


The town's name means 'the church of St Bacan', who founded a monastery here in the 6th century. In time the monastery fell into disuse and disrepair. However, it was rebuilt by the Dalton family and lived in by Cistercian monks from Mellifont Abbey. After its dissolution, the monastery again fell into ruin and, together with its lands, was granted to the Lambart family. Its ruins were replaced by a Protestant church in the 18th century.

A ford crossing the River Brosna at Kilbeggan was the site, in 972, of a battle between the Danes and the Irish. More recently an uprising, led by the United Irishmen, took place in the town, as part of the Irish Rebellion of 1798 against British domination of Ireland.

A branch of the Grand Canal, between Dublin and the River Shannon, served the town, opening in 1835. It was closed in the 1960s and the harbour buildings are now in use as offices and workspace.

21st Century

Today, the town serves as a service centre for the local farming community, hosts some light industry, and is seen increasingly as a Dublin commuter town, particularly since the extension of the M4 motorway west of the city. Mercy Convent is situated in the town.

Kilbeggan is chiefly famous for Locke’s Distillery, the oldest in Ireland, founded in 1750 and now a museum, and for its racecourse located just outside the town.

Around 4 kilometres south of the town, just across the county boundary with Offaly, is Durrow Abbey.

Kilbeggan is particularly well known for Kilbeggan Whiskey.