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The Spirit of Finglas sculpture
The Spirit of Finglas sculpture
Finglas is located in Ireland
Location in Ireland
Finglas is located in Dublin
Finglas (Dublin)
Coordinates: 53°23′25″N 6°17′59″W / 53.390175°N 6.299629°W / 53.390175; -6.299629Coordinates: 53°23′25″N 6°17′59″W / 53.390175°N 6.299629°W / 53.390175; -6.299629
City councilDublin city
Dick McKee Memorial Finglas Village

Finglas (/ˈfɪŋɡləs/; Irish: Fionnghlas, meaning "clear streamlet")[2] is a northwestern outer suburb of Dublin, Ireland, close to Junction 5 of the M50 motorway and the N2 road. Nearby suburbs include Glasnevin and Ballymun; Dublin Airport is 10 km to the north. It lies mainly in the postal district of Dublin 11.

Finglas is the core of a civil parish in the barony of Castleknock.


The name Finglas (Irish: Fionnghlas), meaning a clear streamlet, is derived from the Finglas River, a stream which flows through the village and joins the Tolka at Finglas Bridge.


Finglas was originally the site of an Early Christian abbey, the origin of which has been associated, from early times, with the name of St. Cainnech, or Canice, the patron of Kilkenny, said to have founded it in 560 A.D. The Nethercross from the first abbey can be seen today in the old graveyard.[3] Several primary schools and churches in the area have been named after Canice. According to an ancient legend, the ground on which Finglas stands had been sanctified by St. Patrick, who is said to have uttered a prophecy that a great town would arise at the ford of hurdles in the vale beneath.[4] St. Canice is said to have been born at Glengiven near Derry. The Finglas or Finglass family, who were prominent in the legal profession and in politics in the sixteenth century, took their name from the district.

Finglas is a civil parish in the barony of Castleknock.

In 1649 the Duke of Ormonde used Finglas as a staging post for his army before launching an unsuccessful Siege of Dublin.

Following the Battle of the Boyne in 1690, Finglas was used as a camp for four days by William of Orange en route to Dublin city. While there he issued the Declaration of Finglas, offering a pardon for many of James II's defeated supporters.

20th century onwards[edit]

In 1932, Ireland's first commercial airport was set up at Kildonan in Finglas.[5] It was the site for the first Irish commercial aircraft, a Desoutter Mark II aircraft "EI-AAD", and the first commercial air taxi service, the Iona National Air Taxis and Flying School.[6]

In the 1950s Finglas was developed with extensive housing estates, to re-house many north inner-city Dublin residents. Many of these housing estates particularly in Finglas West were named after prominent Irish republicans from early 20th century Irish history including Barry, Casement, Plunkett, Mellows, McKee, Clune and Clancy.


In the village centre are a range of shops, including one of the first-established Superquinn stores (since rebranded as SuperValu), banking facilities, pubs and restaurants. To the north are several light industrial estates.

Finglas is home to one of Dublin's four Road Safety Authority Driving Testing Centres, which is located in Jamestown Business Park.

Charlestown Shopping Centre and Clearwater Shopping Centre, are located outside the village core, to the north and south of Finglas respectively.


The Rugby Union club Unidare RFC and the GAA club Erins Isle are based in the area. Soccer clubs include Tolka Rovers F.C.,[7] Valley Park United,[8] WFTA Football Club,[9] Willows FC and[10] Finglas Celtic FC and Beneavin F.C.[citation needed]


Finglas is part of the Dublin North-West constituency for elections to Dáil Éireann. For local elections Finglas is split with the west and south in Cabra-Finglas and the east in Ballymun local electoral areas of Dublin City Council.

Coláiste Íde College of Further Education
Bilingual signs in Finglas


There are upwards of 15 primary and national schools in the Finglas area,[11] and approximately 8 secondary schools.[12] This includes Beneavin De La Salle College.[13] Coláiste Íde College of Further Education is also located in Finglas West and offers third level courses.[14]


Finglas is served by a number of bus routes operated by Dublin Bus and Go-Ahead Ireland. These include the 9, 17A, 40, 40B, 40D, 40E, 83, 83A,140 & 220. The main route serving the area is the number 40 which runs between Charlestown Shopping Centre and Liffey Valley via Dublin city centre. A new route, the 40E, was also introduced from Tyrellstown to provide a direct link to the extended Luas Green Line in Broombridge.[citation needed] Other routes serving the area include the 17A which runs between Kilbarrack to Blanchardstown, the 140 which runs to Rathmines via the city centre and the 83 which runs to Kimmage via Glasnevin and the city centre. It is also served by the 88N Nitelink service. Two Bus Éireann routes also serve Finglas, passing along the main Finglas Road, including the 103 from Duleek/Kilmoon Cross/Ashbourne to the city centre.[15]


Finglas has been the home of a number of public figures including:

Town partnerships[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "2006 Census Table 04" (PDF). 2006. Archived from the original (PDF) on 20 July 2006. From Census 2006 – Preliminary Table 04 - Includes totals from divisions/districts: Finglas A, B & C North. And Finglas A, B, C & D South, Ballygall A, B, C & D
  2. ^ "Fionnghlas / Finglas". Irish Placenames' Commission. Retrieved 6 December 2018.
  3. ^ "Parish of St. Canice - The Cross of Nethercross". Archived from the original on 8 February 2013.
  4. ^ Sexton, Peter (2000). History of St. Margarets and Finglas. p. 62.
  5. ^ "Sites - Kildonan". The Historical Aviation Society Of Ireland. Archived from the original on 11 July 2011.
  6. ^ "The Story of Kildonan Aerodrome". Chapters of Dublin. Archived from the original on 22 October 2007.
  7. ^ "Tolka Rovers Football Club".
  8. ^ "Valley Park Utd". Archived from the original on 2 April 2004.
  9. ^ "Finglas United Football Club".
  10. ^ "Willows Football Club".
  11. ^ "Primary Schools in Dublin 11". Archived from the original on 29 November 2007.
  12. ^ "Secondary Schools in Dublin 11". Archived from the original on 29 November 2007.
  13. ^ "Beneavin De La Salle College". Retrieved 2 December 2016.
  14. ^ "Colaiste Ide College of Further Education". Retrieved 6 December 2018.
  15. ^ "Timetable for route 103" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 9 February 2014. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  16. ^ "Mairead Farrell - RTÉ Ten". RTÉ.ie. 2011-11-29. Retrieved 2012-03-01.
  17. ^ "Bono - Evening Herald". 2012-12-12. Retrieved 2013-01-07.