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Subject: County Galway, Margaret Mannion, Peter Tyrrell, George Townshend (Bahá'í), Seán 'ac Dhonncha
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Áth Eascrach
Ahascragh is located in Ireland
Location in Ireland
Country Ireland
Province Connacht
County County Galway
 • Total

4,500 urban = 500

rural = 4,000
Time zone WET (UTC+0)
 • Summer (DST) IST (WEST) (UTC-1)
Irish Grid Reference M775386

Ahascragh (Irish: Áth Eascrach, meaning "Ford of the Esker") is a village in east Galway, Ireland. It is located 11 km (7 mi) (7 mi) north-west of Ballinasloe on the Ahascragh/Bunowen River, a tributary of the River Suck. The R358 regional road passes through the village.


  • History 1
  • Modern village 2
  • People 3
  • Fishing 4
  • Popular culture 5
  • Annalistic references 6
  • See also 7
  • External links 8
  • References 9


The Patron saint of the village is Saint Cuan. His death is recorded in the Annals of the Four Masters in 788 A.D. The Annals also mention the battle of Ahascragh in 1307 between the English forces and O'Kelly Chieftains.[1]

Ahascragh had two Anglo-Irish seats of residence, located in Castlegar and Clonbrock, with respective period houses. In Castlegar sat the Mahon family. The Mahons were settled at Castlegar from the late 17th century. They intermarried on a number of occasions with members of the Browne family of Westport. In 1819 the head of the family became a baronet. In the 1830s, at the time of the first Ordnance Survey, Ross Mahon was the proprietor of several townlands in the parish of Ahascragh. The Mahon estate was one of the principal lessors in the parish of Grange, barony of Loughrea at the time of Griffith's Valuation. Mr. Charles Filgate acted as agent for this property. The Mahons also held extensive lands in the baronies of Clonmacnowen and Killian. In the 1870s the Castlegar estate amounted to over 32 km2 (8,000 acres) in county Galway as well as over 3.2 km2 (800 acres) in the parish of Termonbarry, barony of Ballintober North, county Roscommon. In 1906 Sir William Mahon held over 4.9 km2 (1,200 acres) of untenanted land in the Ahascragh area. MacLochlainn writes that most of the estate was sold to the Land Commission in 1977. [2] In 1979 the house was sold by the Mahons to John Horan, who advertised the house for sale again in 1988. There is still a house at this site.[3]

In Clonbrock sat the Dillon family. Lord Clonbrock was listed as a resident proprietor in county Galway in 1824. At the time of Griffith's Valuation, Lord Clonbrock was one of the principal lessors in the parishes of Ahascragh, Fohanagh, Killalaghtan and Killosolan in the barony of Kilconnell and Killoran in the barony of Longford. In the 1870s the Clonbrock estate in county Galway amounted to over 110 km2 (28,000 acres). Lands, house and demesne at Cahir, barony of Clonmacnowen, owned by James Dillon, were offered for sale in the Encumbered Estates court in July 1854. In 1906 Lord Clonbrock held over 8.1 km2 (2,000 acres) of untenanted land and the mansion house at Clonbrock. [4]

Modern village

Still a small village, it has a thriving local commercial community. There are five pubs: Katie Daly's (It was originally built as a thatched cottage), Cahills, Clinton's, Cathline's and DeCourcy's. There are several hairdressers, two undertakers and one auctioneer located in the village. There is a Londis shop and a Mace convenience store. There is one large supplier of general goods. Bingo every second weekend in the parish hall and monthly ceilies are other highlights. It was recently described as the safest village in Ireland in an article published in "The Irish Daily Mail" (April 2008). The National (Primary) School in Ahascragh was built in 19nn.


  • Mairtín Byrnes (deceased). An award-winning and recorded Irish fiddle player in the East Galway style,[5] who is on the list of all-Ireland Fleadh champions, 1970. [1] Mairtín Byrnes is sitting on the far left.
  • Sean 'ac Donncha (deceased). An award-winning and recorded Irish singer who was the headmaster for many years in Ahascragh national school. He lived outside the village with his wife Bríd and many children in Ervilla. His name in English was Sean McDonagh.
  • Mary Harney. Born into a farming family in the Ahascragh locality, Harney became leader of the Progressive Democrats and a government minister holding various portfolios, including that of Tánaiste (Deputy Prime Minister) and Health.


  • Bunowen River; Open Season: March 1 - September 30
  • Species: Wild Brown Trout averaging nearly 0.45 kg (1 lb)
  • Size Limit: 25.4 cm (10 in)
  • Daily Bag Limit: 6 trout
  • Angling Methods: Trout fishing only, artificial fly, spinning and worms only. Above Ahascragh Bridge fly only, Bank fishing only
  • Access: Access is good at road bridges
  • Facilities: Open Bank - with some stiles and footbridges.
  • Permission To Fish: This fishery is part of the Shannon Regional Fisheries Board's 'Midland Fisheries Group' of controlled waters and anglers require a fishing permit (ticket charge) to fish here. See weblink for map of catchments in the Midland Fisheries group of waters which are covered by a fishing permit. Rates for 2007 are Adult Annual €35.00; Pensioner Annual €18.00;. Juvenile Annual €12.00 Juvenile 1 Day €2.00 Day Permit €10.00 Visitors 21 Day: €18.00. You can purchase a fishing permit online using your credit card or laser card.[6]

Popular culture

RTÉ's award winning show Don't Feed the Gondolas presented by Sean Moncrieff, satirised small village Ireland at the end of each show, choosing Ahascragh and the fictional "Head of the Parish Co-mit-tea" Monica Loolly as its instrument. The following footnotes will bring you to a site playing a Monica Loolly call and secondly pictures from the show.[7][8] So brilliantly executed was this that nobody believed this village in the 'west of Ireland' existed. A regular passing trade of amazed viewers began to visit, sampling the wares of the village.

Annalistic references

  • 1307 - The greater number of the English of Roscommon were slain by Donough Muimhneach O'Kelly, Lord of Hy-Many, at Ath-easgrach-Cuan, where Philip Muinder, John Muinder, and Main Drew, with many others whose names are not mentioned, were killed. Dermot Gall Mac Dermot, Cormac Mac Kaherny, and the sheriff of Roscommon, were taken prisoners; but they were afterwards set at liberty, and they made peace recte restitution for the burning of the town by Edmund Butler. Donough O'Kelly, after he had performed these exploits, died; and his was not the death of one who had lived a life of cowardice, but the death of a man who had displayed prowess and bravery, and bestowed jewels and riches.

See also

External links

  • Ahascragh at Ireland West
  • Pictures of the village and some of its residents


  1. ^ Ireland West. Retrieved February 22, 2007.
  2. ^ Landedestates. Retrieved May. 25, 2008.
  3. ^ Landedestates. Retrieved June. 21, 2008.
  4. ^ Landedestates. Retrieved May. 29, 2008.
  5. ^ irishfiddle. Retrieved May. 29, 2008.
  6. ^ shannon-fishery-board. Retrieved May. 29, 2008.
  7. ^ youtube. Retrieved May. 29, 2008.
  8. ^ redbrick.dcu. Retrieved May. 29, 2008.
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