Dún Laoghaire–Rathdown

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Dún Laoghaire–Rathdown
Dún Laoghaire–Ráth an Dúin
County
Coat of arms of Dún Laoghaire–Rathdown
Coat of arms
Motto: Ó Chuan go Sliabh  (Irish)
"From Harbour to Mountain"
Location of Dún Laoghaire–Rathdown
Country Ireland
Province Leinster
Dáil Éireann Dún Laoghaire,
Dublin South
EU Parliament Dublin
County town Dún Laoghaire
Government
 • Type County Council
Area
 • Total 127.31 km2 (49.15 sq mi)
Population (2011) 206,261
Car plates D
Website www.dlrcoco.ie

Dún Laoghaire–Rathdown[1] (Irish: Dún Laoghaire–Ráth an Dúin) is a county in Ireland. It is part of the Dublin Region in the province of Leinster. It is named after the former borough of Dún Laoghaire and the barony of Rathdown. Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council is the local authority for the county. The population of the county is 206,261 according to the 2011 census.[2]

Geography and political subdivisions[edit]

Dún Laoghaire–Rathdown is bordered to the east by the Irish Sea, to the north by the local government area of Dublin City Council, to the west by South Dublin and to the south by County Wicklow. University College Dublin and Dún Laoghaire Institute of Art, Design and Technology are located in the county. It is one of three smaller counties into which County Dublin was divided in 1994. Located to the south-east of Dublin city, its county town is Dún Laoghaire. It is one of the four constituent parts of the Dublin Region. It was created in 1994 by merging the areas under the jurisdiction of the Corporation of Dún Laoghaire and the south-east part of the former Dublin County Council. Additionally, the powers of the former Deansgrange Joint Burial Board were subsumed into the new authority. As part of the Dublin Region, Dún Laoghaire–Rathdown is within the geographic remit of the Dublin Regional Authority. Following the enactment of the Local Government Act 2001, the Regional Authority was established.[3] It is one of eight such authorities in the state.

Towns, villages and suburbs[edit]

Terminology and etymology[edit]

The name Rathdown is an anglicisation of the Irish "Ráth an Dúin", meaning "ringfort of the fort". Dún Laoghaire, means "Laoghaire's fort".

In Ireland, the usage of the word county always comes before rather than after the county name; thus "County Clare" in Ireland as opposed to "Clare County" in Michigan, US. In the case of those counties created after 1994, they often drop the word county entirely, or use it after the name; thus for example internet search engines show many more uses (on Irish sites) of "Dún Laoghaire–Rathdown" than of either "County Dún Laoghaire–Rathdown" or "Dún Laoghaire–Rathdown County". There appears to be no official guidance in the matter, as even the local authority uses all three forms.[4]

There is no "Rathdown" town in the county. The modern county follows virtually the same divisions as the medieval half-barony of Rathdown, a subdivision of County Dublin.

While it is the smallest county in Ireland in terms of area, it is also the county with the longest name. Furthermore, the official legal name of the county, in English, is spelt without a síneadh fada on the "u" in the Irish-language part of the name, "Dún Laoghaire"[5] (although the current style within the county council is to use the síneadh fada on the name in both Irish and English).[6] The reason for this[citation needed] is that the titles of the new Dublin county councils were never examined at committee stage in the Houses of the Oireachtas, and were last altered under the 1991 Local Government Act which was rushed into effect. Both parliamentary debates and Dublin County Council’s own reorganisation report published in 1992 concluded that the name Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown was "unacceptable". A one year proviso contained in the 1993 Local Government (Dublin) Act for changing the name of the county at local level was allowed to expire by the new council. The legislation permits the elected members of the council to make representations for additional legislation altering the name of the county.

County insignia[edit]

The motto on the insignia of the County Council reads, Ó Chuan go Sliabh, Irish for "From Harbour to Mountain". The crown in the device is that of King Lóegaire mac Néill (Laoghaire, the High King of Ireland in the fifth century, who resided in the area).

Local government and politics[edit]

Dún Laoghaire Town Hall

Dún Laoghaire–Rathdown County Council is the local authority for the county. There are six Local Electoral Areas (LEAs) for the county which return a total of 28 councillors as follows: Ballybrack (6), Blackrock (4), Dundrum (6), Dún Laoghaire (6), "Glencullen/Sandyford" (3), Stillorgan (3).

In 1986, the "administrative county" of Dublin was divided into three "electoral counties": Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown, Dublin — Fingal, and Dublin — Belgard.[7] In 1994, Dublin County Council and the Corporation of Dún Laoghaire were abolished and the three electoral counties became "administrative counties", named Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown, Fingal, and South Dublin respectively.[8] In 2001, the "administrative counties" were redesignated as simply "counties". The three counties together with Dublin city constitute the Dublin Region. The label "County Dublin" continues to be used informally for this area (the city has been administered separately from County Dublin since 1548).

For the purposes of elections to Dáil Éireann, the county is split between the constituencies of Dún Laoghaire (4 representatives) and Dublin South (5 representatives), with the division generally running along the N11. The Dublin region forms the Dublin constituency in European Parliament elections.

Transport[edit]

The Dublin Area Rapid Transit system runs through the eastern coast of the county and connects to Dublin city centre to the north as well as other points north and south on the Iarnród Éireann railway system, with connections to Intercity trains. The green Luas line runs through the centre of the county.

There is a medium-sized ferry port at Dún Laoghaire, with ferry crossings to and from Holyhead in North Wales; this is a popular route for tourists travelling across the Irish Sea from Britain. With the advent of faster boats, day trips using the Dún Laoghaire port have become more popular.

Footnotes[edit]

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 53°18′00″N 6°08′24″W / 53.30000°N 6.14000°W / 53.30000; -6.14000