Visits For February, 2008

Sunday, 17th February 2008

Two Gents And Tales Of A Saint

Not too long ago I received an email from someone pointing out that County Laois has much more than features. This is true, although I have to say not a great deal in the way of things megalithic. Anyway, with the freezing fog that was around this morning I didn't want to head up to Antrim again, so I headed across country to Laois and Tipperary.

The sites on my list had some variation to them, too. Not just rock art and bullaun stones this time (I ended up seeing quite a few more bullaun stones.) I started at a very accessible roadside barrow and proceeded via a round tower and a sheela-na-gig to a string of bullaun stones.

I'd previously been to the round tower at Timahoe, but I didn't have any pictures of the lovely Romanesque doorway. Nor did I have a proper grid reference for the site - I noticed that the one on is way out!

The sheela-na-gig at Cullahill is one I'd tried to see before, but I'd been looking on the wrong wall of the castle. It has been known to become covered in ivy from time to time, too, so that could explain my previous failures to see it. It is now cleared and easy to see ... when you know where it is.

The bullauns were mainly in Tipperary, where I was following in the footsteps of local a man, Derek, who has already visited many of them.

At one of the sites, a bullaun stone known as St. Kieran's Knee, I met two lovely gentlemen who told me tales of how the bullaun stone and the nearby holy well got their name. These two chaps keep the well and stone in good order and would love for it to be signposted so that more people can enjoy them and even use them for the cures they are supposed to provide. It's great to meet people like this and the country could do with many more of them. Sadly, I'm not sure there'll be people to follow that will take such pride in their local treasures.

Greatheath I (Co. Laois)Barrow5 New Images
Timahoe (Co. Laois)Round Tower3 New Images
Moyne (Co. Laois)Bullaun Stone5 New Images
Cullahill (Co. Laois)Sheela-na-Gig4 New Images
The Knee - Lisballyard (Co. Tipperary)Bullaun Stone2 New Images
Lisballyard (Co. Tipperary)Holy Well1 New Image
Lorrha (Co. Tipperary)High Cross2 New Images
Lorrha (Co. Tipperary)High Cross2 New Images
Lorrha (Co. Tipperary)Bullaun Stone2 New Images
Lorrha (Co. Tipperary)Bullaun Stone3 New Images
Townfields (Co. Tipperary)Bullaun Stone3 New Images
Kilruane (Co. Tipperary)Bullaun Stone4 New Images
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