October 15, 2018


Tower of the Ennis Friary

Another good weather day in Ennis. It was about 4 C (around 40 F) this morning with bright blue skies and no wind. It stayed pleasant all day.

One of the narrow, twisty streets (Abbey st) in Ennis with the tower of the Friary in the background

Today was our day to explore Ennis. The area we were interested in is the oldest part of the city. Ennis advertises itself as having old, narrow, twisty, medieval streets. The old, narrow, twisty parts are accurate, but the “medieval” part is a real stretch. The streets are lined with small, but mostly modern, shops and the cars edging through the streets spoil the illusion of truly old.

We decided to try an outside source for breakfast after yesterday’s bad hotel breakfast. We went to the Market Bar and Restaurant which is in a good location and gets good reviews. We can add our good review to the others; we had a good breakfast. In fact, breakfast was so good that we went back for dinner.

The Daniel O’ Connell statue in Ennis (from the mid 1850s)

Wandering this central part of Ennis is easy because it is difficult to lose one’s way. A statue of the Irish lawyer/patriot/hero Daniel O’ Connell stands atop a very tall column near the hotel. It can be seen from many places in the area. We did not need its guidance often.

We looked at wool and yarn, at clothes, at churches, and at many shop windows.

The east end of the Friary. The altar would have been in front of this window.

One of the highlights was the 13th century Ennis Friary. In common with many of the churches we have seen, this church has had its ups and downs. It was restored in the 1700s, gradually fell into ruin by the late 1800s and it was preserved (for lack of a better word) beginning in the 1950s. It is without its original roof, but the nave has been covered with a replica. There are many panels that give information about the original church, the Franciscans who “ran” the Friary, and the preservation efforts. The grounds of Friary are very nice and the green grass simply glowed in the bright sun.

The Annunciation (Adam Pomeroy, 2009, in the Sts Peter and Paul church, Ennis)

We also visited the Sts Peter and Paul Church. It is much newer than the Friary and only dates back to the 1840s. It had a very modern feel inside. There was a modern painting of the Annunciation by a local artist that we both liked.

As you will see from today’s track, we traveled many streets of the central part of the city. I think the tracker got a bit confused as we spent time in the hotel, but don’t worry, we weren’t staggering around as if we were drunk.

We had a nice relaxed afternoon and tomorrow we will move on to Clonmacnoise and Athlone.

I added quite a few pictures of the Friary to the pictures album.

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