Written by thebigfella on 19 Jul, 2004
With a population of about a thousand people Ferns appears to be a small stop on a long drive between Dublin and Wexford. On closer inspection, though, you will discover a wealth of Irish history slowly decaying and virtually forgotten in this…Read More
With a population of about a thousand people Ferns appears to be a small stop on a long drive between Dublin and Wexford.
On closer inspection, though, you will discover a wealth of Irish history slowly decaying and virtually forgotten in this sleepy town.
Once the capital of Leinster, Ferns is littered with ancient monuments easily demonstrating the importance of this once thriving city. Near to the centre of town lies the ruin of St Mary's Abbey built by order of Dermot MacMurrough, once King of Leinster and near to here the remains of the Norman built Ferns Cathedral. This is not the only Cathedral in ferns as it has three to see, in various forms.
Above the main street you will find Ferns Castle which is free to view both inside and outside the walls, but if you would like a more informed tour, a guide from the nearby info shop will take you up the last of the existing towers. The 3.50 Euros is money well spent if only for the commanding views of the surrounding Wexford countryside. Points of reference on the horizon include the infamous Vinegar Hill, site of the rebels encampment during the 1798 Rising of the Irish against British rule.
The info shop also houses a very fine embroided tapestry telling the story of Ferns from the Normans being invited over in 1169 through to modern day. The tapestry was created by local sewing groups and is displayed in seperate panels. A small tea shop with toilet facilities, is also incorporated in this very modern Information Building.