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Raheenagh Church | Ashford Church | Church Ruins

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Killeedy church ruin
© Killeedy church ruin

St Ita built the first church in Killeedy in 546. This church was a monastery for both monks and nuns. As was the case with many of the monasteries in Ireland, Norsemen frequently raided the monastery. In 845 the Vikings burned Killeedy. A church was built on the monastic site after 845. However, Killeedy was raided again in 857 and 916.

Also within the parish there was a church at Killila Bridge. The church is about 2 ½ miles from Ashford on the road to the village of Broadford on the right hand side of the road. The site of the church is now covered by a grove of trees.

According to local man Timmy Sheehan, this church was believed to be St Ita's first church in the area. The stones of the walls of the church are still there according to Mr Sheehan. When Timmy was a young boy he remembers that they were warned not to play there. People were buried here during famine times.

There is also a story told that the owner of the land tried to plough the land once. However as he turned each sod of earth, the sod instantly fell back into the ground. On noticing this, the farmer left the field in a hurry and planted the area with trees and erected a wire fence around the site.

Westropp mentions a church called Killilagh in the parish of Killeedy, which he says is now forgotten. Westropp also mentions a site called Dromcathmeath, may have been in the same parish as Killilagh church ruin in Killeedy. However, he does not specify whether this site was the site of a church or a burial ground.

According to Westropp, there was a thatched church in good condition in 1615 but by 1655, only the ruins of the building remained. The church in Killeedy was used as a place of Protestant worship until around 1800. The church together with the glebe house was destroyed by the Rockites in 1822. The Rockites were an Agrarian revolt group similar to the Whiteboys. Following this, the nave was dismantled and the stones were used as markers for graves.

There was once a church in Kilcoora but it no longer exists. The site is believed to have been on the northern bank of the Darrery River. This church may have also been known as Kilconroe.

Raheenagh Church | Ashford Church | Church Ruins

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