Kimmage (Irish: Camaigh) is a small residential suburb located on the south side of Dublin, Ireland. Surrounded by Crumlin, Greenhills, Harold's Cross, Rathfarnham, Templeogue and Terenure, the name Kimmage comes from the Irish Gaelic cam uisce, which means winding water. In this case it is the water of the River Poddle, a Liffey tributary, which provided the major water supply to medieval Dublin. Rising at Tymon Lake near the Green Hills, it flows through Kimmage, and north to the city after dividing at Mount Argus. One stream flows through via Crumlin and Dolphins Barn to join the River Liffey after Mullinahack, a millrace near Usher's Island. The other stream flows via The Coombe underground around Dublin Castle and into the Liffey further east near Merchants Quay. Kimmage is divided between postal districts Dublin 12 and Dublin 6W.
Features and facilities
The major Kimmage landmark is the KCR (Kimmage Cross Roads), the location of a petrol station and a convenience shop built in the 1960s. The crossroads intersect Terenure Road West, Kimmage Road West, Fortfield Road and the Lower Kimmage Road.
Shopping and pubs
The KCR Pub is located close to the KCR. The Stoneboat is another very popular spot. The main shopping area is on the Lower Kimmage Road. It includes convenience stores, beauty salons, barbers, takeaways, and a garage. The Superquinn supermarket shopping centre on Sundrive Road includes extensive parking and 12 shops.
Kimmage Manor is the location of The Holy Ghost Fathers College which prepared priests for the religious life, now the Kimmage Development Studies Centre. Kimmage Manor Church acts as the parish church for the area.
There was a local cinema in Kimmage: 'The Apollo'. Originally called 'The Sundrive Cinema' it was refurbished and renamed in the late 50's. It has been demolished and replaced with office blocks and apartments. The Stoneboat pub is one of the area's best fine bars. It is named for the boat-shaped century engineering improvement to the diversion fork of the River Poddle. The pub, originally owned by Peter Summers was called The Turks Head. He also had a shop next door called "Pennies From Heaven" with an array of gaming machines, especially 'One Armed Bandits' that took the old pre-decimal one penny (1d) per play. Winners therefore received the "Pennies From Heaven".
The divided Poddle fed the millrace at the end of the pond in the grounds of Mount Argus. In the 50's/60's this two story building housed St Gabriels Boys Club, who were well supported by the local community when they staged Gilbert & Sullivan comic operas. There were several older style residences surrounded the main building.
The residential area between Ferns Road and Kildare Road was architecturally designed to resemble a Celtic Cross. This can be clearly seen on Google Earth and shows an almost perfect mirror image each side of Armagh road. The locals considered this road as dividing Crumlin and Kimmage. The majority of these roads were named after Irish Monasteries such as Clonmacnoise; Clonard; Kells and Monasterboice.
In the late 1940s and early 1950s the park facing the end of Stannaway Road was known locally as the 'Tip'. In the austere years after World War II it was usual to see residents of the area digging for cinders to use as heating fuel in their homes. Such was the level of unemployment, strict rationing and dire poverty at that time that coal and turf was often beyond the means of some residents. Cinders were sometimes the only available form of heating fuel. The 'Tip' had a water-filled quarry which froze over in the winter. In one tragic incident, three young children drowned when the thin ice they were walking on broke and they fell into the water. The quarry was dragged for several days to no avail.
The Cafolla owned chippie is still operating under different ownership and is situated next to the shop at the corner of Blarney Park (formally Greenes Drapers). The third shop to the left of the cinema was named M.A. HENRY, known by the locals as MA Henry. It was run by two ladies of the old school who were very strict about selling cigarettes, and in the 1950s when cigarettes were in short supply it was as if a miracle had occurred if MA Henry sold you a packet of fags. But in order to get the cigarettes, one had to also buy a packet of razor blades. The Pastor in St. Agnes Church was a brother of M.A. Henry. Next to MA Henrys and was a small premises housing a cycle repair shop, now a barbers shop. The shop adjoining the cinema was a dry cleaners, called IMCO.
The soda fountain had a jukebox which at the time was regarded as state-of-the-art technology. Older folk often referred to it as a Nickleodeon, which came from the lyrics of a hit song "Music! Music! Music!" ("Put another nickel in, in the Nickelodeon") by the very popular American singer at the time, Teresa Brewer.
Stannaway Road originally ran from Sundrive Road, up to and just beyond Cashel Road where the scheme ended with a wall across the roadway. It was demolished in the 1940s/1950s when an extension to the original scheme commenced. Blarney Park had a similar wall separating the Dublin Corporation from a private schemes. In the 1950's residents in the Corporation houses objected to being cut off and broke a hole through. The hole was gradually made larger and the Corporation deemed the wall unsafe and eventually demolished it. Access through the private section then became the norm. The Council devised a privatization policy in the 1970s and sold Council homes to the existing tenants.
Captain's Road (then called Captains Lane) runs from the top of Windmill Road in Crumlin to Kimmage Road. There were only a few houses between the schools (St Columcills CBS and the girls convert opposite) on Armagh Road and St Agnes Church. Most of the area here was regarded as being 'almost in the country' by the locals. Captains Lane was a well known area for children to go 'blackberrying' picking the abundant wild crop in August before it developed 'devils spit'.
The Plunkett family house in Kimmage was used as a clearing station for arms imported in 1914. A car load of volunteers left Dublin to meet the shipment of arms from the Aud in County Kerry just before the 1916 Easter Rising. An Irish Republican Brotherhood secret camp, the 'Kimmage Garrison' was established in the area by Joseph Mary Plunkett and his brother George Oliver Plunkett. IRB members with engineering skills over from England, and men on the run lived rough for three months in a mill on Count Plunkett's farm at Larkhill in Kimmage where they manufactured home-made bombs, bayonets and pikes. On Easter Monday, 1916, Captain George Plunkett waved down a tram with his revolver at Harold's Cross, ordered on his volunteers armed with shotguns, pikes and homemade bombs, took out his wallet and said "Fifty-two tuppenny tickets to the city centre please". Arriving at Liberty Hall, they were organised into four companies, and with a hundred other Volunteers, marched with James Connolly and Patrick Pearse to seize the General Post Office, where they remained throughout the Rising. The mill was replaced by the SuperQuinn supermarket in modern times.
- Larkview Boys FC Club are a senior football team from the area who play in the Leinster Senior League. Former Republic of Ireland Brian Kerr (football manager) played at junior level for the club.
- Lorcan O'Toole Park is the main sports ground in the area located at the KCR.
- Reds United were a popular soccer club for which many Kimmage residents played in the 1940s and 1950s.
- Kimmage was famous as one of the two cheaper properties on the Irish version of Monopoly (along with Crumlin), but has now been removed in favour of Rathfarnham in the newer edition. Kimmage's working-class lifestyle is recorded in a popular Irish folk song of the same name, covered by the Dubliners, among many other bands.
- Whoredom in Kimmage is the name of a non-fiction 1994 book by Rosemary Mahoney about women in then-contemporary Ireland.
Notable people associated with Kimmage
- Liam Crowe, footballer
- Trevor Garry, Republic of Ireland youth goalkeeper
- Gay Mitchell, Fine Gael MEP and 2011 Presidential candidate
- Joseph Mary Plunkett (1887–1916), One of the leaders of the Easter Rising, had a family property on Sundrive Cross Roads which was demolished and replaced by a Superquinn Supermarket in modern times. It was a training ground for the rebels before the Rising.
- John Charles McQuaid (1895–1973), studied as a noviciate at the headquarters of the Holy Ghost Fathers in Kimmage, he was the Catholic Archbishop of Dublin and Primate of Ireland.
- Aengus Finucane (1932–2009), was a Roman Catholic missionary and a pioneer for Concern Worldwide, died in a Spiritan Fathers nursing home.
- Denis Fahey(1883–1954), served as a controversial Senior Scholasticate of the Irish Province of the Holy Ghost Fathers at Kimmage in 1912.
- Christy Brown (1932–1981), Author. Famous for his autobiography "My Left Foot"
||Dolphin's Barn||Harold's Cross||Rathmines|
- http://www.xiles.biz/profile.html, 1916 Kimmage Garrison