The quay in the old part of the town
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|Bearna is the only official name. The anglicized spelling Barna has no official status.|
Bearna (anglicized as Barna) is a coastal village in Connemara, west of Galway city in County Galway, Ireland, on the R336 regional road. Once a satellite of Galway city, the village is now rapidly becoming one of its suburbs. Officially, the village is regarded as Irish speaking and is therefore a constituent part of the regions of Ireland that make up the Gaeltacht. However, because of its absorption into the city, it has recently become a mainly English-speaking village. Nonetheless, Irish is still the main language of its western and northern hinterland and the village has now effectively become the gateway to the largest Irish-speaking region in the country.
To try to control the major development which has been undertaken in recent years, a very strongly supported local action group has been set up (Pobal Bhearna). In 1976 a community development group called Comharchumann Bearna Teo was formed after five local men put up the purchase money for 2 acres (8,100 m2) at Troscaigh Thiar to be used for community purposes and has succeeded in developing several recreational facilities.
There are 1,500 native Irish speakers in the Bearna ED. According to the 2011 census, 24% of Bearna's locals use Irish as a daily language.
At the time of the 2011 Census, the total population in this settlement was 1,878, of which males numbered 920 and females were 958. The total housing stock was 772, of which vacant households numbered 98. With an approximate area of 1.89 km2, this settlement has a 2011 population density of 994 persons per km2.
The total population of the Bearna Electoral District (ED) designated as 27044 was 3,630, of which males numbered 1,804 and females were 1,826. The total housing stock was 1,363, of which vacant households numbered 142.
There are numerous sporting clubs active in the Bearna area. Barna GAA are one of the largest sports groups in the village fielding gaelic football teams in men's and ladies' competitions. Other Clubs in the locality are Galway Bay Rugby Club (www.gbrc.ie), Bearna/Na Forbacha hurling club and Barna United soccer club. Notably, Cormac Folan of Freeport in Bearna represented Ireland in Rowing at the 2008 Summer Olympics. Bearna Golf Club, two miles north of the village, is a moorland 18 hole golf course with over 400 members.
Townlands of Bearna
Most townlands are anglisations of the original Irish language names.
- Forramoyle West (from Na Foraí Maola Thiar)
- Forramoyle East (from Na Foraí Maola Thoir)
- New Village (from An Baile Nua)
- Leaclea (from An Leac Liath meaning ‘the grey flagstone or slab’)
- Seapoint (Rinn na Mara in Irish)
- Ahaglugger (from Ath an Ghlugair)
- Truskey West (from Troscaigh Thiar)
- Truskey East (from Troscaigh Thoir)
- Freeport (An Chéibh in Irish)
- Ballard West (from An Baile Ard Thiar meaning ‘the high village west’)
- Ballard East (from An Baile Ard Thoir meaning ‘the high village east’)
- Lenarevagh (from An Léana Riabhach meaning ‘the brindled or streaked grassland’)
- Knockaunnacarragh (from An Cnocán Carrach)
Notable people of Bearna
- Cormac Folan - rower who competed in the men's coxless four event at the 2008 Summer Olympics
- James Hickey (c. 1837 – c. 4 August 1885) - Irish Fenian and Land Leaguer
- "commissioner.ie" (PDF).
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Three members of the Olympic team are NUI Galway rowers, Alan Martin (Salthill), Cormac Folan (Barna) and James Wall (Limerick). For the weekend's training, they were joined by Evin Donnelly and Ruadhán Cooke, of NUI Galway Boat Club.
Media related to Bearna at Wikimedia Commons