Video of Moate, County Westmeath, Republic of Ireland
Moate (Irish: An Móta) is a town in County Westmeath, Ireland.
The name An Móta is derived from the term motte-and-bailey as the Normans built an
example of this type of fortification here. The earthwork is still visible behind
the buildings on the main street.
The town later became an important marketplace and Quaker village. There are several
extant examples of Quaker houses on the main street, which itself is typical of an
Irish marketplace (similar example in Ballymahon, County Longford)
The town is on the R446 road between Kinnegad and Athlone. Before July 2008, this
was the N6 road, a national primary route and Moate was a serious traffic bottleneck.
The new M6 motorway bypasses the town. A disused railway line runs through the town.
It was built by the Midland Great Western Railway to connect Dublin and Galway which
is now served by the Irish Rail route). Athlone lies 12 km west, along the N6.
Moate is a growing town with many new businesses including a supermarket (SuperValu),
hardware store, an internet café-computer shop, pizzeria, petrol station, post office,
gift shop, credit union, library, hair dresser, bank, sport shop, hotel and over
twelve public houses. Many new building ventures have taken place in recent years
including a complex of apartments and shops at the site of the old Convent of Mercy
on Station Road.
The town has a long established Gaelic Football club known as the Moate All Whites
(the team plays in white strip). The club's name and colour are based on the colour
of the religious habits worn by the Carmelite White Friars, a long established Moate
Moate has a strong musical tradition with many young bands emerging from the town.
There is also a recording studio.
The town's theatre and arts centre is called Tuar Ard and was once the site of St.
Patrick's Hall, yet another national school for a time. It is now a venue for plays,
seminars, classical and rock concerts, and presentations.
The Dún na Sí heritage centre on the west side of town includes County Westmeath's
genealogy centre, a restaurant, recreations of various types of indigenous dwellings,
and preserved farm machinery.
The former gaol, part of the old courthouse, now contains a small museum housing
artefacts found in the area dating from the Stone Age through to the modern era.