Having visited Howth quite a few times, and having seen this Martello tower overlooking the marina and East Pier, it wasn't until my most recent visit in April 2015 that I made my way to this construction. A short walk up a fairly steep path, off Abbey Street led to stunning views over the pier and to Ireland's Eye. This is thought to be the site of the original Howth Castle, it was once the site of the castle motte of the St Lawrence estate.
The entrance to the museum is reached by climbing a metal staircase to the small doorway. A notice on the door stated that the entrance fee was 5 euros for Adults, (Entrance free for children.) the museum is on two floors, so probably not suitable for those with mobility problems.
This museum contains the collection of the museum curator, Pat Herbert. A radio enthusiast, and avid collector of all things radio, he was offered these premises by Fingal County Council in 2003. Pat and a small team of volunteer radio enthusiasts show visitors around the museum, explaining the history of radio and the exhibits.
Why 'The Vintage Hurdy Gurdy'? Well, the Taoiseach of Dublin at the time, Sean Lemass was visiting Radio Eireann (RTE) and on hearing the RTE concert orchestra tuning up, commented on the sound of the radio service as the old Hurdy Gurdy.
Looking through the glass of the door, I could see that every available space was crammed with vintage radio sets, posters and everything to interest those interested in radio communication and its history. I wasn't sure if the museum was open - I couldn't see anyone, and to be honest at the time I wasn't too disappointed to miss out on a look around and thought that the entrance fee was a bit steep. However, I now realise that there was another floor with more exhibits, and apparently the guides give an interesting talk. So...... Next time I'm in Howth I'll probably find time for a visit.
To be continued, and photos to follow.
On a hill above the East Pier is a Martello Tower (one of two that can be found on Howth Head). It dates from 1805 and was built by the Englishman, who built several Martello Towers around the Irish coast to watch out for an invasion by Napoleon and the French.
The towers are round with a flat roof.
It’s difficult not to notice the chubby shape of the local Martello Tower from any part of Howth. These defensive bastions were constructed by the Britons during the 19th century all around the Irish coast (34 of them, my travel book insists in pointing me), and they main purpose were to defend the island against the menace of Napoleonic troops.