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Suí an Róin
Shinrone on the R491, County Offaly
Shinrone on the R491, County Offaly
Shinrone is located in Ireland
Location in Ireland
Coordinates: 52°56′N 7°55′W / 52.94°N 7.92°W / 52.94; -7.92Coordinates: 52°56′N 7°55′W / 52.94°N 7.92°W / 52.94; -7.92
Country Ireland
Province Leinster
County County Offaly
Elevation 66 m (217 ft)
Population (2011)
 • Urban 634
Time zone WET (UTC+0)
 • Summer (DST) IST (WEST) (UTC-1)
Irish Grid Reference S049923

Shinrone (Irish: Suí an Róin, meaning "seat of the seal"[1]) is a village in County Offaly, Ireland. It lies at the junction of the R491 regional road between Nenagh and Roscrea where it is joined by the R492 to Sharavogue.[2] According to the 2006 census the population is 591 persons.


American President Barack Obama's earliest known relative, Joseph Kearney, whose family subsequently moved to Moneygall and who would become the President's 7th great-grandfather, was from Shinrone where the Kearney family lived and died for four generations. Research from Trinity college shows this to be the President's earliest known relative.[3]

Irish-born soldier, physician, and politician Edward Hand was born in Clyduff, King's County (now County Offaly) on 31 December 1744 and baptised in Shinrone. Hand served in the Continental Army during the American Revolutionary War, rising to the rank of Major-General, and later was a member of several Pennsylvania governmental bodies.[4]

Buildings of note[edit]

Whilst there are other buildings of architectural interest in and around Shinrone, the following are featured on the National Inventory of Architectural Heritage website[5]

  • Cangort Castle - destroyed by Cromwellian forces in the 17th century. A gatehouse building remains.[6]
  • Annaghbrook House (c. 1720) Previously derelict house with some features of architectural merit being renovated.
  • Gloster Obelisk, Glasderry More townland. (c. 1730) Folly consisting of Arch with two flanking Obelisks. Believed to be the work of Edward Lovett Pearce.
  • Range of outbuildings in Cloughmoyle townland (c. 1740) Attached to a much modified house these ranges of domestic outbuildings are mostly original.
  • Tierney’s, Main St. (c. 1750, renovated c. 1860) Two-storey house with pub. Steeply pitched roof with terracotta ridge tiles.
  • Detached three-storey house with disused shopfront, Main St (c. 1780) Well-proportioned detached house with early-20th-century shopfront.
  • Single storey Lodge, Glasderry More townland. (c. 1820) Lodge to Gloster House, Triple pile with some beautiful detailing.
  • Bridge over a tributary of the Little Brosna River, Main St (c. 1820) Double arch bridge. Eastern arch has been converted to a pedestrian underpass.[7]
  • St Mary’s Church of Ireland (1821) Commissioned by the Board of First Fruits this church has a wider nave than usual.
  • Pair of semi-detached two-storey houses, Main St. (c. 1850) Attractive pair of houses retaining many original features.
  • Shinrone Roman Catholic Church (c. 1860, renovated c. 1980) T-plan church with cross finials on gables.
  • Two storey Lodge, Glasderry More townland. (1869) Another lodge to Gloster House again with interesting detailing.
  • Former school, Main St (1874) Attractive L-shaped building behind cast-iron railings.
  • Kilballyskea House, Lilballyskea townland. (c. 1880) Fine three bay, two storey country house with older outbuildings associated with previous house on this site.
  • Remains of water hydrant (c. 1880) Cast iron, top missing.
  • Building formerly Guest’s shop, Main St. (c. 1900) Disused single-storey early-20th-century shop premises.

In Fiction[edit]

Shinrone is named in the Pogues song Broad Majestic Shannon.

Arlo Guthrie's visit to Shinrone is mentioned in Tim Winton's novel The Riders - shortlisted for the Booker Prize in 1995. A character in the novel overhears locals in the small Irish village of Shinrone, recount the night Arlo Guthrie came to play. The actual event occurred in February 1988, when Arlo played the local hall in Shinrone, County Offaly. The concert was organised by a local postman, Tom Stapleton.

See also[edit]