Video of Baltinglass, County Wicklow, Republic of Ireland
The surrounding area is rich in archaeological and historical sites. On the highest
point of the hill, north-east of the village, lies a passage grave from the stone
age whose outer walls are finished in chalk not native to the area. On bright days
is said to be visible from Kildare's Curragh 48 km (30 mi) away. To the north end
of the village on the weir of the River Slaney lies the ruins of an ancient monastery
that has had many additions over the centuries; the original church is said to date
from around 700 A.D.
The medieval Viscounts Baltinglass were from the Hiberno-Norman Eustace family, who
also founded Ballymore Eustace.
The town centre mainly lies east of the river, along Main Street and ending at Market
and Weavers Square. West of the river, the town is located around the N81/R747 crossroads,
along Edward Street, Mill Street and Belan Street. Quinn's superstore is a landmark
site on Mill Street to the North of the town.
The population of the town has grown considerably in recent years to its current
population of 1,735 people and it is expected to reach 3,000 by the year 2016.
The town has a number of natural, archaeological and built heritage sites; such as,
Baltinglass Hills, Baltinglass Abbey and St. Mary's Church, the River Slaney Special
Area of conservation and a large amount of buildings of architectural and historical
merit, many of which are located in the town centre. The town's rich and historic
heritage makes a significant contribution to its distinct character.
The town has also featured in film and theatre being the location for the 1975 movie
of Brian Friels play “Philadelphia here I come” starring Donal McCann and Siobhan
McKenna and is also the location of the workhouse in Sebastian Barry’s play “The
Steward of Christendom”.
Baltinglass railway station opened on 1 September 1885, was closed for passenger
traffic on 27 January 1947, closed for goods traffic on 10 March 1947, and, finally,
closed altogether on 1 April 1959
Baltinglass, historically known as Baltinglas (Irish: Bealach Conglais, meaning "Road
of Cúglas"), is a town in south-west County Wicklow, Ireland. It is situated on the
River Slaney near the border with County Carlow and County Kildare, on the N81 road.
Its Irish name means "the way of Conglas", Conglas being a member of the mythological
warrior collective, the Fianna. A previous Irish-language name for the village, bringing
to mind its monastic past, was Mainistir an Bhealaigh.