Irish Walled Towns

Irish Walled Towns Content

The Viking raiders of the ninth century and the Anglo-Norman invaders of the twelfth built defensive strongholds that over the centuries came to enrich the fabric of Irish life.

Projects We've Funded

Athenry, Co. Galway - Town Wall Conservation

Athenry town walls are of national importance and are one of the town’s major assets. The town walls were built in the 14th century and have been fundamental in maintaining the plan of the town. Indeed it is the combination of the town walls and the medieval streetscape within the walled circuit that gives Athenry a strong sense of times long past. Allied to this are the other surviving legacies of the medieval period in the town — the Castle, Priory, Collegiate Church and Market Square with Cross — which further add to the rich heritage of this fascinating town.

Recognising that the walls were an under-exploited resource for Athenry, Galway County Council provided funding, in partnership with the Heritage Council, for the conservation and management plan, which has been prepared in consultation with many organisations and the community in order to present as broad a consensus on the way forward as possible. The conservation and management plan provides a framework to guide all stakeholders involved with the Town Walls in developing a long term management strategy for the Walls.

The conservation work on Athenry town walls to date has focused on the North West Tower. The works addressed the following issues: complete plant removal and clean up, pining and pointing damaged masonry, consolidating loose masonry, site investigations, replacement of block wall, temporary steel support structure, capping of wall heads, miscellaneous masonry repairs and a steel gate to doorway.

Download Athenry Town Walls Conservation Plan [pdf 2mb].

IWTN wishes to acknowledge the support given by the European Regional Development Fund; Ireland's EU Structural Funds Programmes 2007-2013; and the Department of Environment, Heritage & Local Government in completing the 2009 conservation works on the town walls of Athenry, Co. Galway.