Community and public representatives take a walk on the wall side on historical tour | Picture: Michael Cowhey
KILMALLOCK was the key point for government rule in North Munster up to the end of the 1600s.
Fast forward to the 21st century and there is no better time to see and experience its history. The latest in a series of walkways was opened by Cathaoirleach of Cappamore-Kilmallock, Cllr Eddie Ryan on Friday.
The new walkway stretches for 728m from near the North Bridge along the bank of the River Loobagh, past Coláiste Iósaef, to the footbridge leading to the Dominican Priory. The medieval eastern town wall also extends through the school grounds. Earlier this year there was a public call-out to suggest names for the new walkway and the Priory Walk was chosen.
The new walkway opens up wonderful views of the Priory, glimpsed through the willow and alders lining the riverbank. At the southern end of the walkway, Coláiste Iósaef has kindly donated an additional space where a small park is to be developed.
Cllr Ryan said it seems not very long ago since they opened the new footbridge and the West Wall Walkway.
“The walkway is very appropriately called the Priory Walkway, as it has opened up superb views of the Dominican Priory, which is one of the heritage jewels of Kilmallock.
“The Maigue Rivers Trust, which is doing such good work in County Limerick to promote and protect waterways, began here in Kilmallock and has already availed of the opening up of this area to install new signage,”said Cllr Ryan.
A new mural depicting what life was like on Sheares Street (then called High Street) from about 1560 has also been unveiled. The reconstruction drawing was completed by Uto Hogerzeil in conjunction with Kilmallock Tidy Towns.
The Priory Walk and mural is part of several different projects within Kilmallock that were funded under the Town and Village Renewal Scheme 2017.
Other local groups who received funding were Kilmallock and District Community Council who are carrying out major improvements to the People’s Hall, the Kilmallock Association of Trade and Commerce who commissioned the Sustainable Development Report and Kilmallock Tourism Development Ltd who, in partnership with the local authority, advanced the new pathway.
“I would also like to take the opportunity to thank Limerick and Clare Education Board who facilitated the walkway and the school principal Noel Kelly who agreed to donate the extra space allowing the development of a small park at this end of the walk.
“I congratulate Michael Keating, the contractor, who has done such a good job and the council staff, including Aidan Doyle, project manager, who worked on the project,” said Cllr Ryan.
The official opening coincided with the 2019 Irish Walled Towns Network Annual Conference and AGM, which was held in Kilmallock at Deebert House Hotel.