This was rather eerie in the drizzle rain that happens alot in Ireland, but was a pretty fun side trip. The River Cloon slides gently by under the trees and the Tower Castle broods over it all, water stains reaching up the walls towards the crenellated top. Not much to see inside, but nice to walk around a bit on the grounds.
Open from May to September 10 - 6, with a small fee charged.
If you know anything about modern ceramic artwork (and I know bugger all) then you would know that Michael Kennedy is a leading light.
He has picked Gort (Boland's lane) to convert a rather nice stone courtyrad area into a pottery and showroom. The stuff he produced are all unique, hand crafted affairs made with some of his own 'special glazes'.
I must admit that the stuff looks great, and I would love to own some. It is certainly expensive, but not outrageously so.
Coole park lies just to the north of Gort. It was the seat (and i am sure she had a very nice seat) of Lady Gregory who played a leading roe in the Irish literary revival. The house has gone, but the ground and especially the woodlands provided great inspiration for writers such as Yeats who lived nearby.
The rather fine parkland is now open to all - and makes for some great little walks.
One feature you can't miss is the 'autograph tree' where visitors have carved their names into the trunk. Among the names you will find many Irish writers - including at least two efforts from George Bernard Shaw. Do that sort of thing these days and you will end up with an anti-social behaviour order being slapped on you !
When it comes to generating tourist income, you really have got to bag a famous name. Call aplace 'Thoor Ballylee', then you will only get a trickle of anoracked tourists, but add 'home of WB Yeats' and you have a viable proposition.
Down a delightful back road a few miles out of Gort, the museum and tea shop pay homage to the great Irish writer who lived here for about 10 years from roughly the end of the first world war.
He bout a shell of a castle from the 16th century and in the best traditions of propert management transformed it into a livable residence. i doubt he made any money deal as the house fell into a state of disrepair until the mid 1960's when the second resoration began.
Worth the detour if you have ever read Yeats, and a plesant little spot to tarry a while (see I'm going all poetic now) even if your not.
Right in the centre of town stands a very well restored weigh house from the 18th century. i presume it was used for all manner of things on market days, and some kind of 'official' status to it.
Good to have such a bit of history hanging about, although it could be much better presented if it was the centrepiece of a sympathetic pedestrianisation schme rather than being stuck forlornly in what is basically a car park.
This was a home of Augusta, Lady Gregory
a center of the Irish literary Revival, which once played
host to many Irish writers and poets.
(but, destoyed in 1941)
The only physical reminder is the "Autographed Tree"
a copper beech inscribed with the initials
W B & J B Yearts, G B Show, J M Synge, Sean O'Casey.........etc.