Tuesday, November 9, 2010

A village in Ireland- towel hanging contests & classic concerts

Graiguenamanagh (''hamlet of the monks'') is a pretty village in County Kilkenny, along the banks of the river Barrow.
And as you'll see,as well as being historic & charming, it is also a lot of fun! 

The website of the lovely Ballyogan House B&B tells us: 
''Graiguenamanagh, Co Kilkenny is one of the most attractive and unspoiled small towns
 in the South-East of Ireland. Nestling under Brandon Hill on a bend in the River Barrow, the town, like the river, has meandered its way through the centuries since it's origin as a Cistercian abbey in the early 13th century. The town is off the beaten track but is still readily accessible from all the major entry points to Ireland -two hours drive from the airport or Ferry ports in Dublin, and only 45 minutes drive from Rosslare Ferry.
Duiske Abbey was founded in the year 1204 and built by Cistercian monks from Wiltshire in England. From that day on, the town of Graiguenamanagh has grown up in the shadow of Brandon Hill and has seen the best of times and the worst of times. The town name comes from the Irish words 'Graig-na-managh' meaning the grange or church of the monks. Indeed it was the monks that gave Graiguenamanagh such a good start and by all accounts they were a very industrious lot. The monks at Graigue were managing huge flocks of sheep and had their own woolen mill from where they exported wool to Italy as early as the 13th century. They also built fish traps on the river and harvested Salmon and Eels in great numbers.''
Towel Hanging Contests
I would add that Graig is also a place of incredible community spirit, with many festivals and organizations for a town of its size! There's Ireland's longest running Brass Band, history society, rowing club, GAA, golf club, tidy towns, scouts, book club, theatre group, and more! Festival wise, there's the Book festival, the Michaelmas festival, The Regatta, the St. Patrick's Day Parade, & I'm pretty sure I've forgotton one or 2. Can it get any more exciting than this? Well, check out the famous 'Towel Hanging Competition' during the June Bank Holiday:
Watch this!

Or how about the Sheep Racing?

(all videos from tonybagpipes's interesting You Tube channel)

In a less tongue in cheek, & more professional vein, here is a clip from RTE's  NationwideTV program about the Graiguenamanagh Duiske Concerts & the Town.

 For this year's concerts, check the Duiske Concerts website. Maybe we'll see you there!


  1. I'm not really sure what is going on with the print fonts/colours, & I've not been able to fix it. Apologies!

  2. What a lovely place you live in, we're in County Clare so quite a distance from you but nice to find another blogger in Ireland.

  3. Susan, I am delighted to learn a little more about your home town and I do love seeing Irish life through your eyes :-)


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