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Eachléim Heritage Centre
|Elevation||1 m (3 ft)|
|Irish Grid Reference||F625205|
|Eachléim is the only official name. The anglicized spellings Aughleam and Aghleam have no official status.|
Eachléim (sometimes anglicized as Aughleam or Aghleam) is a Gaeltacht village and townland in County Mayo, Ireland. It lies on the Mullet Peninsula in Erris, on the R313 regional road. It has a total area of 2.96 km². Its name derives from Irish Each (horse) and Léim (leap), as local folklore has it a horse leapt from the east of the townland to the west, marking out its borders.
Saint Deirbhile's Heritage Centre
In the heritage centre which is called Ionad Deirbhile visitors can gain great insight into the lifestyle of the Mullet Peninsula in the past. Also included is information on St. Deirbhile whose relics can be seen in the surrounding area.
The sixth-century St. Deirbhile's Church, situated on the peninsula. It is a place of great interest as well as being in the most wonderful location. As an old tradition many visitors try to squeeze themselves through its west window and out its eastern door three times. If one can do this, it is said that they will never die from drowning. Legends also say that a person can be seen through this gap if you look closely at this ruin. St Deirbhile's well, a short distance away, is a holy well. This well is said to cure eye problems. Legends tells us St. Deirbhile travelled to this remote area to escape a lover she was not interested in. However, she was followed here, and in sheer frustration and to make herself less irresistible, she gouged out her own eyes. When her horrified admirer had left, she washed her eyes in the waters of the well and her sight was restored.
The heritage centre has a large amount of locally gathered research material and books on local history available. Visitors can research aspects of Mullet local history and archaeology, island life and the Legend of the Children of Lir. The facilities the centre offers, includes refreshments such as soup and sandwiches, coffee and tea.
While the heritage centre is relatively newly built, it was built to suit the historic happenings of the surrounding area. A 10-foot stained glass window illustrating the story of St. Deirbhile is a major feature of the centre. It is a replica of the window found in the pre-Norman Church as Falmore. The architectural style of the centre is that of a traditional cottage.
In the centre there is a stone fireplace and chimney breast from the time of the Irish Famine, and there are many local artefacts dating from the last century which have been gathered from the local area.