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Ennistymon or Ennistimon (Irish: Inis Díomáin) is a country market town in County Clare, near the west coast of Ireland. The River Inagh, with its small rapids known as the Cascades, runs through the town, behind the main street. A bridge across the river leads to nearby Lahinch, on the N67 national secondary road. The town is connected to Ennis by the N85, continuing the settlement's main street.
The town's official name is Ennistimon, although Ennistymon is the spelling most widely used. Historically, it was spelled Inishdymon. This is believed to derive from Inis Diomáin meaning "Diomán's island". However, Míchéal Ó Raghallaigh argues that the name is derived from Inis Tí Méan meaning "island of the middle house" or "river meadow of the middle house".
Ennistymon grew from just three cabins in 1775 to 120 houses in 1810 (70 of which were slated). The oldest part of town is the narrow street near the bridge. A Christian Brothers Monastery, Mount St. Joseph's, was established in 1824.:54,56
Shops in Ennistymon include a SuperValu supermarket, an Aldi supermarket, two bookshops, several art galleries, a bakery, several hairdressers, a butcher, a hardware shop, print shop, dry cleaners, launderette, builders' suppliers, several cafés and restaurants. In addition to The Falls Hotel, and a number of B&Bs, there are also several pubs which host Irish traditional musicians.
Two Bus Éireann routes, 333 and 350, serve the town. Route 350 links Ennistymon to Ennis, Lahinch, Cliffs of Moher, Doolin (where it is possible to connect with a ferry to the Aran Islands), Lisdoonvarna and Galway. There are a number of journeys each way daily. Onward rail and bus connections are available at Ennis and Galway. Route 333 links the town to Kilfenora, Corofin, Miltown Malbay and Doonbeg.
The West Clare Railway formerly passed through the town, connecting it to Ennis and the West Clare coastal towns and villages. Ennistymon railway station opened on 2 July 1887. The railway closed on 1 February 1961.
Teach Ceoil Saint Andrews is a Gothic revival Church of Ireland from the 1830s which was converted to a hall and cultural centre in 1989.
The Falls Hotel, formerly Ennistymon House, is a Georgian house built on the site of an earlier castle. It takes its name from the nearby waterfalls (falls or cascades).
The ruins of Glen Castle are located near the road to Ennis. Also in ruins is the nearby Protestant church and graveyard, built by the Archdeacon of Kilfenora James Kenny (appointed in 1775). This nave-and-chancel church was built in 1778 and fell into disuse after the new Church of Ireland was constructed in the 1830s. It features a single Gothic door, three windows on the north and one the east side.:54–5
The An Gorta Mór ("The Great Hunger") Memorial was erected a mile outside Ennistymon on the road to Lahinch to commemorate the memory of the victims of the Great Famine from 1845 to 1850. It was dedicated on 20 August 1995 – the 150th anniversary of the Famine. Located across from Palladian Ennistymon Hospital, itself built on the grounds of the local workhouse (Union of Kilmanaheen), it was erected by a combined effort of the Ancient Order of Hibernians (AOH), Board of Erin, Board of America and Clare County Council.
The monument was designed by an artist from Co Kerry and depicts an account found in the Minutes of the Meetings of the Boards of Guardians for Ennistymon Union held in the County Archives. The account centered on a note that was pinned to the torn shirt of a barefoot orphan boy who was left at the workhouse door on the freezing cold morning of 25 February 1848. The note read:
There is a little boy named Michael Rice of Lahinch aged about 4 years. He is an orphan, his father having died last year and his mother has expired on last Wednesday night, who is now about to be buried without a coffin!! Unless ye make some provision for such. The child in question is now at the Workhouse Gate expecting to be admitted, if not it will starve. -- Rob S. Constable''
One side of the memorial depicts a child standing before the workhouse door, while across from that is the head of an anguished mother and two hands clenched in frustration or anger above the sorrowful text of the pleading note.
Ennistymon has two primary schools: Scoil Mhainchin/Ennistymon National School and Mol an Oige Steiner School. Mol an Oige Steiner National School became the first Steiner method school in Ireland to be given permanent recognition as a national school in 2015 by the Department of Education. Patronage of Mol an Óige Steiner National School was transferred on 1 September 2019 to the Limerick and Clare Education and Training Board and it became Mol an Óige Community National School (CNS) in 2019.
Scoil Mhainchin is in an amalgamation of the CBS Primary School and The Convent of Mercy National School. There are also three secondary schools in the town: Ennistymon CBS, which is the only all-boys school in the county, the Vocational School and Scoil Mhuire provide secondary education. Plans are in place to amalgamate these three schools.
Parish of Ennistymon
- William O'Brien, 2nd Marquess of Thomond, Irish peer
- Kootenay Brown (by birth John George Brown), Irish-Canadian polymath, soldier, trader and conservation advocate
- Martin Conway, Irish Fine Gael politician
- Seamus Mac Cruitín, Irish poet and bard
- Marie Davenport, Irish former female long-distance runner
- Brian Merriman, Irish language poet and teacher (a statue of him stands outside St Andrew's church)
- William Rynne, Irish Republican who fought in the 1916 Rising
- John Philip Holland, Irish engineer and inventor of the submarine attended C.B.S. Secondary School Ennistymon
Ennistymon is twinned with:
- "Inis Díomáin/Ennistimon". Logainm.ie. Retrieved 30 October 2017.
- Joyce, Patrick Weston (1875). Míchéal Ó Raghallaigh:Scríobhaí ó Inis Díomáin, "The Other Clare", vol. 16 (Shannon, 1992), p. 18.
- Cunningham, George (1980). Burren Journey West. Shannonside Mid Western Regional Tourism Organisation. ISBN 0-9503080-2-1.
- "Ennistymon station" (PDF). Railscot - Irish Railways. Retrieved 13 October 2007.
- "National Inventory of Architectural Heritage - Teach Ceoil Saint Andrews, Church Street, Ennistymon, County Clare". Department of Arts, Heritage & the Gaeltacht. Retrieved 23 December 2016.
- "Ennistymon Union Minute Books 1839 - 1850". Clarelibrary.ie. Retrieved 30 October 2017.
- Henderson, Rob. "Mol an Óige Community National School - Mol an Óige - Community National School". Steinermolanoigens.org. Retrieved 30 October 2017.
- Ryan, Nicky. "Ireland now has its first (official) Steiner National School". Thejopurnal.ie. Retrieved 30 October 2017.
- "Two County Clare Steiner National Schools to Become Community National Schools".
- Henderson, Rob. "Meánscoil na mBráithre Inis Díomáin". Cbsennistymon.com. Retrieved 30 October 2017.
- "Ennistymon Vocational School Home Page". Ennistymonvocationalschool.com. Archived from the original on 22 October 2016. Retrieved 30 October 2017.
- "Scoil Mhuire Ennistymon". Scoil Mhuire Ennistymon. Retrieved 30 October 2017.
- Team, Fujitsu/Oireachtas Lotus Notes/Domino Development. "Parliamentary Debates". Oireachtasdebates.oireachtas.ie. Retrieved 30 October 2017.
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