Today, September 27th, is World Tourism Day – whatever that is! Well, I’m at home so I’m taking you on a tour of my village (grab your umbrella – rain is on its way!).
Welcome to Shankill. We are located in South County Dublin which is on the East Coast of Ireland. I think I’m very lucky to live here – I’m a few minutes walk from the beach, a few minutes walk from the train station which gets me to the city centre in 30 minutes and 2kms from County Wicklow with its beautiful forests and glens.
The name Shankill is derived from either the Irish sean-chill (old church) or sean-choill (old wood). Natives here go back a long way – the area has been inhabited since 2500BC. Roll on to the 19th century when the local landlord decided to gentrify the area to attract Dublin’s elite. He evicted his tenant farmers, some of whom were kindly rehoused by another landowner in a cluster of buildings which was to become the village.
This is our little main street (the mountain in the background is the Sugarloaf – a few kms away in County Wicklow – its a popular weekend climb for families). This was once the main road from Dublin to the south east of the country so we lived with traffic jams every day. Now it is bypassed and has allowed a lovely community to develop.
Mosaics have been inlaid into the pavement outside the shops.
This is my local – Brady’s is a great pub and very supportive of the community.
Our library was built in 1912.
Ah – good timing – my favourite bus route!!! The air coach passes through the village every hour and gets me to the airport in about 65 minutes.
St Anne’s Catholic Church was built in 1933….
…while St. James’ at Crinken has been open since 1840!
I love the old walls…
….and we’ve lots of hump-backed bridges.
There’s talk of removing our lovely trees to facilitate a bus corridor. The community is objecting of course. The red ribbons were added to highlight awareness.
Now we are in Shanganagh Park. We’ve almost 90 acres of parkland to cross…
Signs of autumn…
For the next few weeks I’ll carry a bag with me on my walks but the blackberries aren’t ready for picking yet…
The dog park is busy today…
Plenty of sporting opportunities…
And now we’ve reached the Irish sea…
Look right towards the seaside town of Bray…
….and left toward Killiney Hill.
This is Dalkey Island.
Erosion is a huge problem here.
We walk along the beach for a few hundred metres and then head off to see what else the locals get up to…. past the bowling club, the tennis club and the allotments…
This is the DART (Dublin Area Rapid Transit). It takes me from Shankill station to the city centre in about 30 minutes.
Pupils from the local schools made this whale mural which is displayed at the DART station.
We’re now walking along the top of those cliffs we saw from the beach. There’s Killiney Hill and Dalkey Island again.
Here’s a closer look at Killiney Hill. I’ll take you up there sometime. The spire on top is not a church but an obelisk – commissioned by a local landlord to provide employment for destitute families during the Great Famine (1845-49). Ironic that the hill is now home to many of Ireland’s wealthiest residents – moneyed business people, musicians, actors, authors and TV personalities like to buy here.
The spire in the distance belongs to the church of St Alphonsus and St Columba. Its too far to walk today. Its only significance is that I was christened there!
We’re curving back around now – this is the Shanganagh River.
I’m almost home and the rain has held off – I’ve probably done my 10,000 steps so I’ll say goodbye.
Happy World Tourism Day wherever you are.
Looking back over this, its all a bit twee isn’t it. Well… I didn’t show you everything of course…
….for example, this is our new shopping centre which everyone is actually delighted with….
….although I’m not sure how well the combination of traditional and contemporary is working!!