|Town and townland|
The countryside around Blarney
|Irish Grid Reference||W610759|
Blarney (Irish: an Bhlarna, meaning "the little field") is a town and townland in County Cork, Ireland. It lies 8 km (5.0 mi) north-west of Cork and is famed as the site of Blarney Castle, home of the legendary Blarney Stone.
Blarney town is a major tourist attraction in County Cork. Mostly people come to see the castle, kiss the stone, and to shop at the Blarney Woolen Mills.
By kissing the Blarney Stone at Blarney Castle, it is claimed that one can receive the "Gift of the Gab" (eloquence, or skill at flattery or persuasion). The legend has several suggested roots, involving members of the MacCarthy dynasty – builders and original owners of Blarney Castle.
Blarney Woollen Mills
Built in 1823, Blarney Woollen Mills was originally known as Mahony's Mills. It was a water powered mill, producing mainly tweeds and woollens. After closing in the early 1970s, the mills was re-invented by local entrepreneur Christy Kelleher as a gift store servicing tourists visiting the village.
The centre of the village is dominated by The Square – a grass field where Blarney locals and townspeople sometimes congregate during the summer.
Several attempts to develop the square over the years have always been met with stiff objection from the locals. Previously the square was used for markets.
The town is served by a number of Bus Eireann services, including the number 215 bus every half an hour from Mahon Point via Cork city centre and the number 235 bus from Cork city at a lesser frequency.
The nearest airport is Cork Airport.
Economy and media
The Blarney economy is heavily dependent on the largely US tourism trade, with numerous hotels and guest houses in the area to serve this demand.
The Muskerry News is the local paper for Blarney and surrounding areas and is printed monthly. Local radio stations that can be picked up in the Blarney area are RedFM, C103 and 96FM.
There is a Roman Catholic boys' primary school Scoil an Chroí Ró Naofa which caters for approximately 200 pupils and is situated in the centre of the village. A girls' school, Scoil Íosagáin na gCailíní was built nearby in 1974 to accommodate the girls of the parish, whilst the boys received a new extension to their school in 1986.
Gaelscoil Mhuscrai, is the Irish language primary school in the village. It caters for approximately 120 students and was established in 2002. It was officially recognised by the State in 2003.
Blarney is also the home of a secondary school called Scoil Mhuire Gan Smál which was established in 1952 and has about 500 students.
Sport and leisure
In sport, the local soccer club, Blarney United FC, has playing facilities close to the village, with both a traditional grass pitch and an all-weather pitch. The pitches are supported by changing facilities, a meeting room and a hospitality room. The senior team competes in the Premier Division of the Munster Senior League. The town's GAA club, Blarney GAA, were All-Ireland Intermediate Hurling Champions in 2009 and Cork-County Intermediate Hurling Champions in 2008. Blarney also fields a Camogie team, which was established again in 1999. The local cycling club was re-formed in 2010.
In music, the Blarney Brass and Reed Band was formed in 1981 by a group of locals who wished to form a community musical group spanning multiple age groups. The band has a music education program and won events at the South of Ireland Band Championships in 2010 and 2011.
- From blair, blar, meaning a plain. "Blarney". New International Encyclopedia. 1905.
- Placenames Database of Ireland – Blarney
- "Our History". Blarneywoollenmillshotel.com. Retrieved 2014-06-16.
- [dead link]
- "Opening of the All Weather Facility in O'Shea Park - Charlie Hurley and Niall Quinn help to make Blarney United's day". BlarneyUnited.com. July 2007.
- "Blarney United F.C". Blarneyunited.com. Retrieved 2014-06-16.
- Blarney Cycling Club
- "History | Blarney Brass and Reed Band". Blarneybrassandreed.com. Retrieved 2014-06-16.
- "Blarney Brass and Reed Band take honours in Clonakilty". Cork Independent. 2011-07-07. Retrieved 2014-06-16.
|Look up blarney in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.|
|Wikisource has the text of the 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica article Blarney.|
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Blarney.|
- Official Blarney Castle website
- Website of Blarney secondary school, Scoil Mhuire Gan Smál
- Blarney Boy's National School Website
- The official website of Blarney United FC
- Blarney GAA's website
- Blarney Community Council website
- Blarney and Area Local Newspaper, The Muskerry News
- Blarney Cycling Club Homepage
- Blarney Brass and Reed Band website