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Historic Kinsale map set to launch next week

Wednesday, 7th March, 2018 4:13pm

By Marie O'Shea

What are the five gates that once granted entrance to the walled town of Kinsale? Who were the town’s principal boat-building families in centuries past?
What late medieval Kinsale tower house, once used as a prison, now houses a wine museum?

The newly released, user-friendly Kinsale Historic Map and brochure answers all these questions and provides a wealth of other historical information on the town. It will be officially launched by Chairperson of the Municipal District Rachel McCarthy next Tuesday, 13 March, in the Municipal Hall at 11am.

The map is one of a series featuring eight historic West Cork towns. Similar maps of Bandon and Dunmanway have been released, with Skibbereen and Bantry soon to come. Maps of Clonakilty, Schull and Castletownbere are in production and expected to be ready by the end of the year.

County Archaeologist Mary Sleeman and County Council Senior Executive Officer Macdara O’hIci developed the idea for the map, which was inspired by observing the West Cork Model Railway Village in Clonakilty.

The village’s miniature replicas of four West Cork towns allow visitors to appreciate the totality of each town’s buildings and heritage features. Similarly, the maps provide a compact overview of each town’s layout and points of interest. Foldable to an A6 size, they can be carried easily in a pocket or bag during walks and explorations.

Cork County Council commissioned artist Rhoda Cronin-Allanic, who also has a background in archaeology, to prepare the maps. Her work reflects careful historical research conducted with the help of local historical societies, heritage centres and tourist offices.

“The maps are a welcome addition to a town that is full of history and culture, and will only further enhance Kinsale’s thriving tourism,” said Jacqueline Mansfield, Senior Staff Officer with the County Council’s Western Division.

But she added that locals will likely learn things they had never known from the brochure, too. The buildings shown on the map tell the story of social, religious, and economic change.

For example, the Gothic revival Methodist church, dating to 1873, points to the introduction of Methodism in Kinsale in 1748 by Charles Wesley, younger brother of John Wesley, founder of the Methodist Church.

Tourists and locals can find the maps in tourist offices, heritage centres, museums, libraries, and council offices. They are also available to view and download for free at visitcorkcounty.com .

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