Monday, March 15, 2010

Visions of Ireland: Around the town of Newcastle, Tipperary

Newcastle, Co. Tipperary, (Caisleán Nua in Irish) is a small town of 201 people (according to the 2002 Irish Census), about 21 miles southwest of the larger town of Clonmel, nestled between the lush River Suir valley and the soft Knockmealdown Mountains on the Tip/Waterford border.  When we are in Ireland, this peaceful little village is our home.

Heading down from Ardfinnan, over the River Suir to the town.  Our house is in the cleft of where the brown mountain slopes down to the left.

The center of Newcastle town.

The old Norman fort, built around the 1100s which gave Newcastle it's name.

Behind the castle is the old church, which was burned with people in it, by Oliver Cromwell during his march across Ireland.

Because the church is still hallowed ground, it's now used as a burial ground, inside and out.

My father standing in the church.  I've called this his record album cover.

My mother gets one too.

We head out of town a few miles towards the house.  The sounds of the water rushing down the glen (Glen Bui or the Yellow Glen) behind the house gets louder.

The view from the mountain looking down at the house.

And looking into the Knockmealdown mountains.  This was in February (spring in Ireland) which accounts for the brown colors.

 On the mountain.

 A paleolithic tomb marker on the mountain looking over the fields and towns to the north, below.  The orientation seems to be east-west, the path of the sun.  The hills and fields of this area are dotted with Christian and Pagan sites.

The village of Newcastle in the center-left.

Heading into the mountains towards Mount Mellery Abbey.


The remnants of what is called a "famine cottage".  People lived here until the time of the Famine and either emigrated to America or England or died.

Looking back down the road.  Dewy & damp seem the best adjectives.  This was taken in May when the yellow furze was in bloom.