Killina, Holy Well, Mass Rock and Bullaun Stone, Co. Offaly.

Location – A few km West of Tullamore.
OS: N 273 238 (map 48)
Longitude: 7° 35' 26.99" W
Latitude: 53° 15' 49.91" N
GPS: N 27241 23805 (Accuracy – 7m)
See map at the bottom of the page.

Description and History – There is more to this place than meets the eye. It has obviously been well looked after in the past few years and I don’t really like the modern inscriptions on the stones, but that’s the price being paid for maintenance. The well, dedicated to St. Anthony, is now dried up but everything about it screams ancient to me. The well and the mass rock are instantly reminiscent of megalithic tombs. This is an area largely absent of megalithic tombs so I’m not saying that it is their origins but that is what they reminded me of. There is an unmarked bullaun stone here as well. I spent some time here looking around. There are many large boulders here, all of them now marked with modern inscriptions emphasising aspects of Ireland’s penal times. Well worth a visit.

Difficulty – It’s down a little track way so parking is a little tricky but possible.

For more sites in Co. Offaly, click here.
For more ecclesiastical sites, click here.

St. Anthony's well.

I really dislike the carving on the lintel.

The mass rock in front of the well.

Graffiti reading '1706' in the mass rock.

The unmarked bullaun.

View The Standing Stone in a larger map

Kilmanman, Church, Co. Laois.

Location – Not far from Clonaslee in the foothills of the Slieve Bloom Mountains.
OS: N 305 124 (map 54)
Longitude: 7° 32' 38.26" W
Latitude: 53° 9' 40.49" N
GPS: N 30474 12351 (Accuracy – 5m)
See map at the bottom of the page.

Description and History – Named after St. Manman this church was the centre of a late medieval parish and the ruin dates to the late 16th century. It’s fairly large for a parish church and is nearly 20m in length and 10m wide. The church is largely featureless but does have the remains of a bellcote. There is a small barrel vaulted chamber which appears to be much later in date than the original construction.  This is a very picturesque church. There was a holy well nearby also dedicated to St. Manman but I could not find this. It was disused in the 19th century so I think all traces of this well have disappeared.

Difficulty – Easy enough to find and get to.

For more sites in Co. Laois, click here.
For more ecclesiastical sites, click here.

 The remains of the bellcote.

View The Standing Stone in a larger map

Baurnadomeeny, Wedge Tomb, Co. Tipperary.

Location – Just North of Rear Cross, it’s signposted and is a field in from the road.
OS: R 846 601 (map 59)
Longitude: 8° 13' 40.03" W
Latitude: 52° 41' 30.83" N
See map at the bottom of the page.

Description and History – This ranks amongst one of my favourite sites in the country and I can’t understand why this is not a much more visited site and much more looked after. It’s not neglected by any means but could do with a little care and attention.  Again connected with Diarmuid and Grainne this tomb appears to have multiple alignments with different chambers aligned with different important sunrises. The tomb is surrounded by a double kerb, 16m and 11m in diameter respectively. The outer kerb is a largest but no stones stand above 1m in height. The tomb is very long, roughly 5m long with a septal stone creating the portico and main chamber. The capstone at the front appears to be carved on the inside to create a small channel. I wonder if this allows the sun to flow into the chamber. There are also some small carvings, of no particular pattern, on some of the inner stones, but I have not been successful in locating these. Some cairn material remains on top. This is a fantastically preserved tomb and really well worth traversing the muddy field to get there.

Difficulty – A little tricky as the field before the tomb is very muddy and after rain it is prone to flooding. Wellies are a must here.

For more sites in Co. Tipperary, click here.
For more Neolithic Tombs, click here.

 The rear of the tomb.

The double kerb.

It's rare to see some of the cairn material left on top.

Looking into the chamber.

Small stones used in construction to get the right height of the stones.

Groove in the underside of the capstone.

View The Standing Stone in a larger map