New Ross

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

New Ross
Ros Mhic Thriúin
New Ross, 2011
New Ross, 2011
Coat of arms of New Ross
New Ross is located in Ireland
New Ross
New Ross
Location in Ireland
Coordinates: 52°23′46″N 6°56′42″W / 52.396°N 6.945°W / 52.396; -6.945Coordinates: 52°23′46″N 6°56′42″W / 52.396°N 6.945°W / 52.396; -6.945
CountyCounty Wexford
30 m (100 ft)
 • Urban
Time zoneUTC±0 (WET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+1 (IST)
Eircode routing key
Telephone area code+353(0)51
Irish Grid ReferenceS715278

New Ross (Irish: Ros Mhic Thriúin,[5] formerly Ros Mhic Treoin) is a town in southwest County Wexford, Ireland. It is located on the River Barrow, near the border with County Kilkenny, and is around 20 kilometres (12 mi) northeast of Waterford. In 2016 it had a population of 8,040 people, making it the fourth-largest town in the county.


New Ross c. 1680

The port town of New Ross dates from the pre-Middle Ages. The earliest settlement in this area dates to the 6th century when St. Abban of Magheranoidhe founded a monastery in what is now Irishtown. The original earthen banked circular enclosure of his monastery was visible around the graveyard until it was removed by the council.[citation needed] It was replaced by a concrete wall and steel fence.[citation needed] Its name, Ros, was shortened from Ros Mhic Treoin, or the Wood of the Son of Treoin.[6]

New Ross was in the territory of Dermot McMurrough and came to prominence when the Anglo-Normans conquered the region. The Norman knight William Marshall and his bride Isabella de Clare arrived during the early part of the 13th century. An earthen defensive structure called a motte was built at Old Ross in order to hold the newly conquered territory. A medieval borough sprung up around it - peopled by English and Welsh settlers. The arrival of Isabella and William is described in the Chronicles of Ross, which are in the British Museum. It records that in 1189, Isabella set about "building a lovely city on the banks of the Barrow".[citation needed] The town's fortunes further increased when King John made William the Earl of Pembroke at his coronation in 1199. A year later, the Earl Marshal transferred the Norman capital of Leinster to Kilkenny and New Ross became the main port.[citation needed]

The town grew around the bridge built by William Marshal, son-in-law of Richard de Clare, 2nd Earl of Pembroke (Strongbow), and a leader of the Norman invasion of Ireland. The town of New Ross (the town of the new bridge) was granted a Royal Charter in 1207. The port gained concessions from King John in 1215 and again in 1227 but these were later revoked by Henry III and Edward I to protect the port of Waterford. New Ross was still Ireland's busiest port in the 13th century.[citation needed] These restrictions were lifted in the 14th century by Edward II and Edward III. In the late 13th century the town was placed for a time under a papal interdict, following a riot in which several monks of the Order of Crutched Friars were killed.

St Mary's Abbey (Church of Ireland) was built in 1811. There are two Roman Catholic churches, the parish church of SS. Michael and Mary completed in 1902, and the Augustinian church opened in 1835.

New Ross in 1832

The town was fought over in the Irish Confederate Wars of the 1640s. In 1643, the town resisted the siege by James Butler, 1st Duke of Ormonde, who fought a battle near the town with an Irish army under Thomas Preston, 1st Viscount Tara but later re-conquered by Oliver Cromwell in 1649 who discharged three cannon shots at the Aldgate. The town is at an important crossing point,[citation needed] sited on the River Barrow between the river estuary to the south and the point where the River Nore joins the Barrow to the north. It was the location of one of the bloodiest battles of the 1798 rebellion.


There are four primary schools in New Ross, two for boys, one for girls and one co-education school. The two boys' schools are Michael Street National School which caters for children from Junior Infants up until 1st Class. They then move up to the Senior school, New Ross CBS, which children attend from 2nd class onwards. The girls' primary school, St Joseph's, caters for students from Junior Infants to 6th Class. There is a mixed school in New Ross, St Canice's, which is situated across the bridge in Rosbercon. There are five secondary schools in New Ross, one is all-boys, two are all-girls, and two are mixed.

St Augustine's and Good Counsel College, New Ross, is an all-boys school that caters for over 750 students making it by far the largest school in New Ross. St Mary's and Our Lady of Lourdes are the two all-girl secondary schools. The two mixed schools are the Kennedy College and CBS Secondary.


Sporting organisations in the town of New Ross include New Ross Triathlon Club, Geraldine O'Hanrahans GAA Club, St Michaels Boxing Club, New Ross RFC, New Ross Celtic Soccer Club,[7] New Ross Town Soccer Club, New Ross Boat Club, New Ross Badminton Club, New Ross Swimming Club, Dunbrody Archers, United Striders AC and New Ross Golf Club.

Arts and culture[edit]

The town's arts centre is St Michael's Theatre. The present building was built in 1806, eight years after the insurrection of 1798 and served as the parish church until 1902 when the new parish church, St Mary's & Michael's, was opened. St Michael's has a staff of 12, a 300-seat theatre, a 50-seat studio venue, an art gallery, a cinema, a coffee shop and a bar.[8]

The Tholsel

New Ross is home to the Ros Tapestry Project, a community initiative undertaken throughout County Wexford by a team of 150 voluntary embroiderers. The Ros Tapestries depict events including the founding of New Ross by William Marshall.[9] The first tapestry was completed in 2002 and to date all but one of the 15 tapestries are complete. In 2009 the Ros Tapestry Exhibition was opened at The Quay, New Ross.[10]



The road crossing the Barrow is the N25 road linking Cork, Waterford City 25 km (16 mi) away and Rosslare Harbour 40 km (25 mi) away. The N30 links Enniscorthy and New Ross.

Bus links[edit]

The town is served by several bus routes and its main stop is on the town's quay. There are services to and from Waterford each day. Bus Éireann is the principal operator providing Expressway services to Dublin and Dublin Airport and to Rosslare Europort and Cork as well as local services. Wexford Bus operate a service between Wexford and Waterford while Kilbride Coaches operate a route linking the town to Kilkenny. Wexford Local Link operates services to Enniscorthy.


New Ross (Rosbercon) railway station opened on 19 September 1887, closed for passenger traffic on 30 March 1964 and closed for goods traffic by 1995.[11] It was an important link between the lines serving Dublin to Rosslare, Bagenalstown via Palace East and on to Waterford. In 2020 the last tracks were lifted in preparation for a new greenway. Some of the track was salvaged by the Waterford and Suir Valley Railway for preservation and reuse.


New Ross is Ireland's only inland port, located 32 km (20 mi) from the sea on the River Barrow.[12] A small marina is located downstream of the town.[13] The tall ship Asgard II which provided sail-training, sometimes docked in New Ross on its travels.[citation needed]


Until the creation of ships too large to reach the port, in the 19th century, New Ross was a port town. However, the river is too shallow to allow passage of large ships and the port gradually went into decline. The town continued to be a market town for the rich agricultural hinterland but suffered from recession throughout the 1970s, 1980s, and early part of the 1990s. As of the 21st century, there is some industry in the area, with businesses centring on services and retail. Retail outlets including Tesco, Lidl and Aldi are located away from the centre of town.


The Ros Tapestry Exhibition Centre located on the Quay in New Ross is a series of 15 embroidered Tapestry panels. Depicting Celtic Ireland looking at Celtic rituals, woman warriors and Brehon Law, to early Christian Ireland, the Vikings of Wexford and the ousting of Diarmait MacMurchada from his Kingdom of Leinster and sailing to France in search of King Henry II. Also depicted is William Marshal who married Isabel de Clare heiress of Strongbow, Earl of Pembroke and granddaughter of Diarmait MacMurchada.

Dunbrody Ship—a full-scale replica of the original 19th century vessel.

New Ross is home to the Dunbrody replica famine ship which is moored on the Quay. The town also houses the Emigrant Flame; a constantly burning flame in a memorandum of the emigrants of the famine.

A statue of John F. Kennedy is located on the quayside. The statue was unveiled in July 2008 by his sister Jean Kennedy Smith. The JFK Dunbrody Festival is held each year in July in the town and centres primarily on live music on the festival stage.

In the village of Duncannon, 21 km (13 mi) to the south of New Ross, Duncannon Fort is located alongside a Blue Flag beach.

The name of Liverpool F.C.'s stadium at Anfield road came from the old town land of Annefield in New Ross.[14][15]

The Browne-Clayton Monument is located on the New Ross - Wexford Road (N25) approximately 12 km (7.5 mi) east of New Ross.

The Hook Lighthouse is located 39 km (24 mi) south of New Ross.

The Kennedy family Homestead, the ancestral home of US President John F Kennedy is located 8 km (5.0 mi) south of New Ross, and the JFK Arboretum is also located to the south of the town.[16] It is not related to the O'Kennedy Park Wexford GAA stadium.



New Ross has town twinning agreements[17] with the communities of:

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Sapmap Area - Settlements - New Ross". Census 2016. CSO. 2016. Retrieved 12 January 2018.
  2. ^ "CSO - Census: Census Startpage". 9 March 2005. Archived from the original on 9 March 2005.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link)
  3. ^ "HISTPOP.ORG - Home". 28 May 2004. Archived from the original on 28 May 2004.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link)
  4. ^ Post 1991 totals are for New Ross urban, New Ross environs, and New Ross Rosbercon urban. For a discussion on the accuracy of pre-famine census returns see JJ Lee "On the accuracy of the pre-famine Irish censuses" in Irish Population, Economy and Society edited by JM Goldstrom and LA Clarkson (1981) p54, and also "New Developments in Irish Population History, 1700-1850" by Joel Mokyr and Cormac Ó Gráda in The Economic History Review, New Series, Vol. 37, No. 4 (November 1984), pp. 473-88.
  5. ^ "Ros Mhic Thriúin / New Ross". Placenames Database of Ireland. Retrieved 16 October 2021.
  6. ^ Berry, H. F. (31 December 1915). "Diary of a Dublin Lady in the Reign of George II". The Journal of the Royal Society of Antiquaries of Ireland. 5 (4): 314–315. JSTOR 25514440.
  7. ^ "New Ross Celtic AFC". Retrieved 14 December 2016.
  8. ^ "St. Michael's Theatre - Centre for the Arts". Retrieved 14 December 2016.
  9. ^ "15 Embroidered Panels Depicting the Norman Landing". The Ros Tapestry. Retrieved 14 December 2016.
  10. ^ "About Us - Ros Tapestry". The Ros Tapestry. Retrieved 7 May 2020.
  11. ^ "New Ross".
  12. ^ "New Ross Port". Retrieved 7 May 2020.
  13. ^ "New Ross Marina". Retrieved 7 May 2020.
  14. ^ "Ten connections between Liverpool and Ireland". Liverpool Echo. 4 October 2015. Retrieved 4 October 2015.
  15. ^ "150-year-old documents shed new light on link between New Ross and Anfield". Wexford People. Retrieved 26 August 2014.
  16. ^ "The John F Kennedy Arboretum". Heritage Ireland. Retrieved 18 March 2018.
  17. ^ "New Ross TC". Archived from the original on 7 December 2017. Retrieved 14 December 2016.