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Tag Archives: Ennis Friary

Historic Ennis Friary re-opens to the public

TOURISM in Ennis has received a boost with the historic Ennis Friary re-opening to the public this week. The friary, which dates back to the 13th century, re-opened on Tuesday having been closed to the public since last summer due to Covid-19 restrictions. And as an extra bonus, admission to the popular attraction is free for the season. Welcoming the announcement, Councillor Mary Howard said it is “great news” for the town. Just last month she criticised the continued closure of the Friary, saying that the town was losing out on potential tourism opportunities. The Friary has been opened with health and safety in mind and Covid-19 guidelines have been put in place. A maximum of 15 visitors are permitted on site at any one time. Social distancing will apply throughout the site. Face coverings must be worn in all indoor spaces. There are self guided visits only, but Ennis Friary guides are on hand to answer any questions. Hand …

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Town is losing out with Friary still shut

THE continued closure of Ennis Friary has been described as “appalling” with the county capital losing out on the financial boost the popular tourist attraction could bring this summer. The friary, which dates back to the 13th century, has been closed to the public since last summer due to Covid-19 restrictions. The Office of Public Works does not have an opening date for the Friary, the monthly meeting of the Ennis Municipal District was told. Councillor Mary Howard had sought clarity on when the OPW planned on reopening the historic building on Lower Abbey Street. Responding to the query, Niamh O’Connor, Administrative Officer, stated that the Ennis Municipal District received correspondence from Trish Ryan, Heritage Services – National Monuments Administration at the Office of Public Works, advising that “the Office Of Public Works do not have an opening date for Ennis Friary.” Councillor Howard voiced disappointment at the response saying the closure has meant that Ennis is losing out. “We …

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Damian fulfils 10- year journey of faith with his ordination

TEN years ago Damian Casey set out on a journey of faith, which has led him to being ordained as a priest of the Franscican Order this weekend. His ordination will take place this Saturday at 4pm, and on Friday, April 30, the newly ordained Fr Damian will celebrate the 7.30pm mass in Ennis Cathedral. Brother Damian is currently the Deacon of the Franciscan Order and his ordination, along with his first mass on Sunday at 12 noon, is being broadcast on the internet. Damian was born in Waterford, a past pupil of Mount Sion CBS. After school his life took him on a career in teaching, ending up as Principal of Mother of Fair Love School, Kilkenny. In 2011 Damian began exploring his vocational calling and this led him to the Franciscan family. Two years late Damian came to Ennis as a novice and in September 2014 in the Friary here in Ennis he made his first profession. His …

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Planning decision to impact on Ennis pub’s future?

THE future viability of an Ennis pub/restaurant that employs 40 staff is uncertain, following a decision by An Bord Pleanála to refuse the retention and alteration of an outdoor smoking room with a retractable roof. Derek Gleeson, the owner of Yolo – You Only Live Once – at 40 Abbey Street, Ennis, in response to an enforcement order in March to remove the structure, had applied to Clare County Council to retain and alter the outdoor smoking room at the pub/restaurant with a traditional shop front at the smoking area, in keeping with the other traditional shop front on the premises. The council refused the development in July and this decision was appealed to An Bord Pleanála. The corner building is a protected structure, dating from the 18th century, and is part of a terrace of listed buildings on Abbey Street, in what is an Architectural Conservation Area. According to the submission made on behalf of Mr Gleeson, “This bar/restaurant …

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Stunning Scattery paintings go on exhibition

ENNIS Friary has an added attraction for both tourists and locals this summer – a temporary art exhibition featuring a series of stunning original paintings of Scattery Island. The paintings  are the work of Senan O’Brien a talented Dublin artist with very strong Clare roots. The exhibition features six paintings depicting different views of Scattery Island, it’s landscape, buildings and Saint Senan’s monastery. The artist was born in 1964 in Dublin, the youngest son of Denis O’Brien, himself a renowned artist, and Lillian O’Brien (nee Beehan) from Kilrush. He was named Senan after a good friend of his parents Fr. Senan Hederman O.F.M. a Franciscan from Ennis, who, by coincidence, is buried at Ennis Friary where the exhibition is taking place. O’Brien’s skills as an artist have been widely recognised and his artwork is highly sought after. He has been commissioned to paint works for former president Mary McAleese and A.I.B. Bank. Successful solo exhibitions of his work have also …

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Ennis Friary re-opens

Ennis Friary, the old Franciscan Friary on Abbey Street has now re-opened for the 2014 tourist season. And visitors to the historic site this Easter will have a chance to see the results of recent restoration works of the medieval ‘passion panels’. Last year saw a record number of both locals and foreign tourists visiting the heritage site. And so far this year there has already been an increase in visitor numbers since the Friary opened at the beginning of the month. The Office of Public Works, who manage the site, are encouraging local families as well as visitors to the town to go along during the Easter holidays to witness the ‘passion panels’ These panels were carved for a royal tomb built by the McMahon family in the 1400s and show in exquisite detail various scenes of story of Easter including Christ’s betrayal, crucifixion and resurrection. There has also been renewed local interest in the site due to the …

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