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An Teampall Mór
Main Street and Town Hall, Templemore 2015
Main Street and Town Hall, Templemore 2015
Templemore is located in Ireland
Location in Ireland
Coordinates: Lua error in Module:Coordinates at line 668: callParserFunction: function "#coordinates" was not found.
Country Ireland
Province Munster
County County Tipperary
Population (2011)
 • Total 1,943
Irish Grid Reference S104720
Website www.templemore.ie

Templemore (Irish: An Teampall Mór, meaning "The Big Church") is a town in County Tipperary, Ireland. It is a civil parish in the historical barony of Eliogarty.[1] It is part of the parish of Templemore, Clonmore and Killea in the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Cashel and Emly.[2]

The 2011 Census results show that the town's population decreased by 13.8% from 2,255 in 2006 to 1,943 in 2011.

Location and access

Templemore is the eighth largest town in County Tipperary. The N62 national route connects the town to the main Dublin-Limerick motorway (M7 – Junction 22) and Roscrea north of the parish. Travelling south, the route connects to Thurles and then the main Dublin-Cork motorway (M8/N8 – Junction 6 Horse and Jockey). The N62 originates in Athlone.

To the east, the R433 connects the town to the M8/N8 at a more northerly point (Junction 3) via the villages of Clonmore, Errill and the town of Rathdowney in County Laois. Alternatively, the motorway may be accessed via the village of Templetuohy. To the west, the R501, tracking the Devil's Bit mountain range, goes to Borrisoleigh.

Templemore railway station is on the Dublin-Cork railway line operated by Iarnród Éireann. There are direct trains to and from stations like Dublin Heuston railway station (8 trains avg), Thurles (9 trains avg) Cork (4 trains avg) and Limerick (4 trains avg) daily[3]


Ancient history

The ancient territory of Éile obtained its name from pre-historic inhabitants called the Eli, about whom little is known beyond what may be gathered from legends and traditions. The extent of Éile varied throughout the centuries with the rise and fall of the tribes in occupation. Before the 5th century AD the details of its history which can be gleaned from surviving records and literature are exceedingly meagre, obscure and confusing. During this century however Éile appears to have reached its greatest extent, stretching from Croghan Bri Eli (Croghan Hill in Offaly) to just south of Cashel (in Corca Eathrach Eli). The southern part of this territory embraced the baronies of Eliogarty and Ikerrin, a great part of the modern barony of Middle Third, the territory of Ileagh (or Ileigh) and a portion of the present barony of Kilnamanagh Upper.

By the 8th century, the territory of Ancient Éile had broken up into a number of petty kingdoms: the O'Carroll occupied the northern portion, the O'Spillanes held Ileagh, the Eóganacht Chaisil had annexed Middle Third. The ancient name of the district on which the town now stands was Tuatha Corca Teine. Teine was supposed to have been the son of the King of Connacht, arriving in the district shortly after Saint Patrick. Monastic settlements were located at the site of Teine's fort, Land of the Monks (Irish: Farran na Manna). A holy man named Silean (Anglicised as Sheelan) is reputed to have accompanied St Patrick and to have established a monastery in the area. There is no townland called Templemore. The townland on which the town is built is Kiltillane (Irish: Cill tSilean), meaning Saint Sheelan's Church.

Feudal period

File:The Big Church or Templemore Abbey entrance.JPG
The Big Church or Templemore Abbey
West entrance. April 2011.

With the Norman invasion of Ireland in 1169, a powerful Norman family – the Butlers – became the new overlords. Early in the 14th century, they were raised to the Earldom of Ormond. As the holders of the County Palatine of Tipperary, they were entitled to appoint sheriffs and judges, and to gather certain classes of revenue that would normally have been due to the Crown. This privilege was withdrawn in 1715. The family donated a small piece of land to the Abbey of St Thomas in Dublin, and about 1200 a large Abbey was built with a moated graveyard, the remains of which are still to be seen in Templemore Demesne, commonly known as the "Town Park".

The Blackcastle, as it is locally known, was built in the Town Park in 1450 by James Butler, 4th Earl of Ormond.[4] This building and its manor lands were occupied by the Butlers and were later leased to the families of Purcell of Loughmore (Loughmoe) and Morris of Knockagh.[5]

The O′Fogarty clan held what is now the barony of Eliogarty, while to the north of them, at least some time later, were O'Meaghers of Ikerrin.[6] The River Nore, at its position between Roscrea and Templemore, although just a small stream at this point, is usually taken as the southern limit of Ely O'Carroll territory.

Carden family

File:Black Castle Town Park 2007.jpg
Black Castle Town Park 2007

Around 1695 the Butlers sold extensive lands to an English family called Carden[7] from Cheshire, who settled in the area and also located at Barnane and Fishmoyne. Over the next 200 years, this family was to play a significant part in the development of the town and district which has the nickname of "Carden's Wild Demesne", after the popular 19th century poem.

"Templemore owes its improved state to the liberality and exertions of the John C. Carden, Bart. under whose auspices the public buildings were erected, and by whom the ground on which the town stands was granted at a nominal annual rent."[8]

Following the burning of the Blackcastle, Carden built a new estate. He built a mansion known as the Priory on the edge of the town. The architecture of the Priory was in the style of the Elizabethan era. The Priory was surrounded by a demesne which had a formal garden with paved paths around an artificial lake. Quoting from a contemporary newspaper commentary of 1861, when the Priory was still under construction:

The noble Gothic pile of finely chiselled limestone, with its battlements, turrets, buttresses and extensive façade, and spacious arched doorway; the architraves of grouped columns, retreating to the depth of several feet, convey to the mind an idea of architectural grandeur seldom associated with the country residences of our gentry.

There were extensive gardens and a lot of money was spent on them:

The house itself consists of sixty rooms, and the sum of, we understand £20,000 in round numbers, has been expended so far upon the building, – Upon entering the grand hall, through the massive oaken doorway, replete with medieval decorations, the visitor finds that ‘The Priory’ has been erected in a style of magnificence not very generally met with – it is floored en mosaique, in walnut and oak; the peculiar grotesque spirit of the Gothic style is not permitted to run riot through the rich oak carving, while that more beautiful element, tracery enters largely into the interior ornamentation – the oak painted ceiling richly stuccoed and the polished armour shields an banners that hang around with the erect figures in full suits of armour; the wide staircase in massive oak – the great doorways leading to the drawing–room at one side and to the library at the other – the rich and mellow light that comes through the beautiful stained glass window that forms the upper portion of the Gothic entrance, and through the lancet shaped sashes – all this bespeak a profuse liberality and taste of order.


The Cardens kept the ruins of the old church and graveyard. At the entrance on the Borrisoleigh Road is the gatekeeper's lodge. After 1860, the Priory was renamed the Abbey.[10]

Lewis' directory of 1837 lists the principal landowners in the locality at the time:

"Lloydsborough is the seat of J. Lloyd, Esq.; part of the demesne is in Killea, though the mansion is in the parish of Templemore; it is a handsome residence in a well-planted demesne. The other principal seats are Woodville Lodge, the residence of D. J. Webb, Esq.; Belleville, of the Hon. C.J.K. Monck; and Eastwood, of T. Bennett, Esq.".[11]

McCan Barracks

McCan Barracks, originally called "Richmond barracks", was constructed in 1809 on the 17-acre (69,000 m2) site donated by the town's founder and largest landowner Sir John Carden, ancestor of Sir John Carden, 6th Baronet (1892-1935), who also donated the adjoining 40 acres (160,000 m2) for training and recreation. It replaced an earlier barracks located near the Ursuline convent. George Borrow resided there when he accompanied his father's regiment to Templemore in 1816. The new barracks consisted of 2 squares, surrounded by company lines, stores, married quarters, officer's mess, military prison, church and hospital. Completely surrounded by a high wall, with protective/defensive posts at each corner, it had accommodation for 25 officers, married quarters for 48 other ranks, and 767 unmarried personnel. A total of 36 hospital beds and 15 guardroom cells were located within the complex as well as stabling for 27 officers' horses. The surrounding area was quickly developed, with names such as Talavera Place, Vimeiro Mall and Regent Bridge,[12] reminders of the victories of the British in the Peninsular War taking place at the time of the construction of the barracks.[13]

Since February 1964, the barracks has been the site of the Garda Síochána College, the centre for training Ireland's police force.[14]

War of Independence

[original research?]

With the killing of two (Catholic) members of the Royal Irish Constabulary in the County Tipperary Soloheadbeg Ambush by members of the IRA in January 1919, the Irish War of Independence began. British soldiers and RIC based in Templemore were involved in operations to suppress IRA guerrilla activity. On 16 August 1920, Templemore Town Hall was burned down[15] by the British Army in reprisal for the killing of District Inspector Wilson, shot by IRA volunteer James Stapleton on the orders of local IRA commander James Leahy.[16] Troops of the Northamptonshire Regiment based in Richmond Barracks took petrol from a local garage to burn the hall while they shot up local businesses with indiscriminate rifle fire.[6] Lieutenant Colonel S.H. Beattie, who accompanied the soldiers, the son of Sir Andrew Beattie, Dublin,[17] was engaged to Wilson's daughter.[6] Beattie, a decorated World War I veteran, either fell from a ladder or jumped from a window and died from burns and broken bones later that night from the Town Hall Fire. Some days later badly burned human remains apparently crushed by fallen beams along with bits of kit and a rifle with a bayonet attached was found as local workmen cleared the ruins of burnt out buildings. The soldier was identified as Lance Corporal H.J. Fuggle,[18] whom the authorities claimed was a deserter. In a second reprisal following an IRA ambush on a patrol in Thomastown, County Kilkenny in which three British soldiers died, the troops rampaged through Templemore, burning and looting houses and premises causing extensive damage. Townspeople feared the town would eventually be entirely reduced to ruins. Edward McGrath, a local IRA leader, was held captive in Richmond Barracks and forced to accompany military patrols as a hostage before he was transferred to Ballykinlar internment camp.[19]

The reprisals were brought to a sudden end by the occurrence of the so-called Templemore miracles in which a number of holy statues in the locality purportedly began to bleed spontaneously. This caused Templemore to become a pilgrim town for a short time and subject to sensational newspaper reports. The bleeding statues were put on display in the town square where crowds of people congregated. A local teenager who claimed to have had visions of the Blessed Virgin was confronted by Dan Breen and forced to admit the miracles were a fabrication. However a number of pilgrims claimed that they were healed and many locals were adamant the teenage visionary who later emigrated to Australia was genuine. The youth was intimidated into leaving Ireland because Breen and Leahy strongly suspected he was a British spy. Another IRA ambush nearby the following month in which two RIC officers were shot and killed caused war-time conditions to resume in Templemore and the pilgrims to make a hasty exit.[20] On Christmas Eve, 1920 a local Catholic curate, Father Hickey, was arrested and held captive in Richmond Barracks but was later released.[6] On 6 June 1921, Private Frederick George Carroll was shot and killed accidentally while cleaning his rifle[21] a little over a month before a truce was declared bringing the conflict to an end.

Templemore Abbey, which had been the residence of the Carden family until 1902, had been used as a base since 1920 by a unit of British Auxiliaries. After the truce was declared in July 1921 the mansion was vacated and later a group of local IRA members led by Séan Scott burned the building to the ground on the pretext of denying its use to the British should they have 'returned' in the event negotiations broke down and hostilities resumed.[22] The ruins were sold in 1925 and demolished. Years later a furniture showroom was built on the site while the extensive grounds including a wood and an artificial lake became Templemore Town Park.[citation needed]

Following the Anglo-Irish Treaty of December 1921 and the establishment of the Irish Provisional Government the IRA troops who had taken over the barracks after it had been evacuated by the Northamptonshires, decided to support the anti-treaty side in the Irish Civil War and put the barracks in a state of defence. Troops of the National Army soon occupied the town, and were prepared to attack the barracks. Through the intervention [clarification needed] of Dr Harty, then Archbishop of Cashel and Emly, hostilities were called off and the troops in possession were allowed to evacuate. The National Army remained in possession until 1929.[23] Two bridges on the Mall River in Templemore were named after two IRA officers, Captain Michael Small and Lieutenant Thomas O'Dwyer, who were killed in separate incidents by British forces in 1920.

Templemore today

The town council was abolished in 2014.

File:Templemore Main Street and Town Hall, 2015.JPG
Main Street and Town Hall viewed south, 2015
File:Mary Street Templemore.JPG
Mary Street Templemore, April 2010

Townlands in the civil parish

There are 38 townlands in the civil parish of Templemore.[24] The bulk of the town of Templemore lies in the townland of Kiltillane which has the River Suir as its eastern boundary. Townlands in the north-western parts of the parish are situated in the barony of Ikerrin. From north to south they are Killough, Clontaaffe, Craiguedarg, Curraduff and Graiguebeg. This can be readily verified from the O.S.I.'s historical map of the barony. The townland of Killawardy is mainly in the civil parish of Killea. Adjacent to it, but in the parish of Templemore and the barony of Eliogarty, is a townland of the same name.

Acres Barony Poor Law Union
Adamstown Baile Ádaim 289 Eliogarty Thurles
Ballycahill Baile Uí Chathail 1,028 Eliogarty Thurles
Ballyheen Béal Átha Hín 156 Eliogarty Thurles
Barnalascaw Bearna Leathscátha 18 Eliogarty Thurles
Belleville Belleville 32 Eliogarty Thurles
Borrisbeg An Bhuiríos Bheag 488 Eliogarty Thurles
Butlerslodge Lóiste an Bhuitléaraigh 20 Eliogarty Thurles
Clontaaffe Cluain Tífe 462 Ikerrin Roscrea
Craiguedarg An Ghráig Dhearg 82 Ikerrin Roscrea
Culleenagh An Choillíneach 162 Eliogarty Thurles
Curraduff An Currach Dubh 175 Ikerrin Roscrea
Eastwood An Choill Thoir 225 Eliogarty Thurles
Farranacahill Fearann Ó gCathail 79 Eliogarty Thurles
Farranaderry Fearann Doire 172 Eliogarty Thurles
Forest An Seisceann 199 Eliogarty Thurles
Graiguebeg An Ghráig Bheag 37 Ikerrin Roscrea
Greenwood An Choill Ghlas 40 Eliogarty Thurles
Ivyhall Halla an Eidhneáin 74 Eliogarty Thurles
Jockeyhall Halla an Mharcaigh 42 Eliogarty Thurles
Kilclareen Cill Chléirín 156 Eliogarty Thurles
Killawardy Coill an Bhardaigh 101 Ikerrin Roscrea
Killough Cill Eochaidh 849 Ikerrin Roscrea
Kiltillane Cill tSiolláin 506 Eliogarty Thurles
Kiltilliha Cill Tuilithe 195 Eliogarty Thurles
Knockanroe An Cnocán Rua 760 Eliogarty Thurles
Kylebeg An Choill Bheag 17 Eliogarty Thurles
Lisnaviddoge North Lios na bhFeadóg Thuaidh 89 Eliogarty Thurles
Lisnaviddoge South Lios na bhFeadóg Theas 59 Eliogarty Thurles
Lloydsborough Gort Ruáin 322 Eliogarty Thurles
Manna North Mana Thuaidh 131 Eliogarty Thurles
Manna South Mana Theas 225 Eliogarty Thurles
Oldtown An Seanbhaile 354 Eliogarty Thurles
Priory Demesne Diméin na Prióireachta 288 Eliogarty Thurles
Rossnamanniff Lower Ros na mBanbh Íochtarach 55 Eliogarty Thurles
Rossnamanniff Upper Ros na mBanbh Uachtarach 44 Eliogarty Thurles
Sandymount Cnocán na Gainimhe 50 Eliogarty Thurles
Templemore Demesne Diméin an Teampaill Mhóir 386 Eliogarty Thurles
Woodville Woodville 83 Eliogarty Thurles

Amenities and features

The most notable landmark in the district is the Devil's Bit mountain range. It is a popular excursion for people to visit the Rock and cross at the summit. Following the War of Independence, the private demesne of the Carden family came into the ownership of the town's urban district council which handed it over to the citizens as the Town Park. The Park incorporates an outdoor Swimming Pool, GAA grounds (Páirc Shíleáin), Lakeside Pitch & Putt Course and an all-weather athletic track in the care of Templemore Athletic Club. The demesne's mature woodlands features walks, the romantic ruin of the Black Castle on the western bank of the lake and the ruin of the eponymous big church. The main focus of attention is the man-made lake (7.5 acres) which is suitable for coarse fishing.

On the Roscrea road there is a cluster of buildings associated with the Church of Ireland community. The most significant of these is St Mary's Church, which is the principal church serving the Church of Ireland community in Templemore, Thurles and Kilfithmone.[25] The church originally stood in front of one of the entrances to the Abbey's parkland. When the estates locally known as The Park were built in the late 1950s, the entrance gates and avenue were removed by the town council. The church, along with St Mary's School, the Rectory, adjacent cottage and lodge, were built in 1789 on land donated by Sir John Craven Carden. It was consecrated by the Archbishop of Cashel, Charles Agar, in 1794. The clock tower is now restored and is floodlit as part of a millennium project.[citation needed]

The foundation stone for the parish church, the "Church of the Sacred Heart", was laid on 1 January 1877. It stands on the site of the former residential Erasmus Smith school. At the nearby village of Loughmore is the historic Loughmoe Castle. The local area is quite scenic and there are expansive views from the Devil's Bit mountain close by.[citation needed]

The market square with its Town Hall in the centre of the town is reputed locally to be the widest in either Ireland or Britain. It backs on to an extensive wooded Town Park and lake. The Georgian architecture (dating from the 19th century) with its three-storey houses on the main street, was directed by Sir John Carden (2nd Baronet, Templemore).


  • St Colmcille's Primary School for boys, under the ethos of the Catholic Church. Formerly run by the Christian Brothers.
  • St Joseph's Primary School for girls, under the ethos of the Catholic Church. Run by the Sisters of Mercy.
  • St Mary's National School, under the ethos of the Church of Ireland.
  • Our Lady's Secondary School (co-educational), under the ethos of the Catholic Church. It was formed when the Sisters of Mercy Convent (a day and boarding school) merged with the Christian Brothers secondary school in 1986.
  • St Sheelan's College, which has a more vocational focus. In 2003, it ceased second level teaching and is now a QQI college of further education offering over 30 different courses. In 2012 it changed it's name to Templemore College of Further Education.
  • Garda Síochána College, the education and training college of the Garda Síochána (Irish police). It is located at McCan Barracks.


Gaelic games

The local Gaelic Athletic Association club is J.K. Bracken's GAC, formed in 1991 when clubs from Clonmore, Killea and Templemore merged. It is named for Joseph Kevin Bracken, one of the founders of the GAA,[26] who came from Templemore. His son, Brendan, who was a member of Winston Churchill's government in the United Kingdom during World War II, was born in Templemore.[27] Another WWII connection is that of William Joyce (a.k.a. Lord Haw-Haw). According to local lore, he lived off the Main Street during the War of Independence and was run out of the town by the IRA as a suspected informer.[citation needed]


BT HARPS On Wednesday 24 October 2012, the launch of the amalgamated Blackcastle United FC and Templemore FC took place under the new title of BT HARPS. Blackcastle Utd was founded in 1969 and it accommodated Junior players, aged 16+. Templemore FC was founded in 1984 and it accommodated Juvenile players from age 6 right up to 16. Now they are all catered for under the one umbrella that is BT Harps. The Club caters for Templemore parish and from all of the neighbouring parishes and even further afield. Currently BT HARPS are redeveloping their ground on the Roscrea Road, with relaying re-seeding and draining the entire area to bring the playing surface up to standard. It is intended to utilise both pitches for the benefit the entire club of over twenty three teams. The club dressing rooms are about to undergo a major overhaul and when completed will provide modern changing and showering facilities for the players. BT HARPS long term plan will feature the provision of an all-weather floodlit training/game area.


There is a nine hole golf course located at close to the Garda Síochána College just off the Thurles road. The Lakeside Pitch-and-Putt club is located beside the lake in the Town Park. Its eighteen hole course is affiliated to the Pitch and Putt Union of Ireland.


Coarse fishing is available in the lake in the town park. The lake was recently restored after a period of pollution and rising phosphates. It now boasts a healthy stock of native fish, as well as a scenic fountain.

International relations

Templemore is twinned with the community of Prémilhat in France and with the municipality of Potenza Picena in Italy.[28]


See also


  1. Putting the barony in its historico-geographical context.
    Barony – an old administrative division. Eliogarty – one of 14 baronies in the old county, between Ikerrin to the north (whose chief town is Roscrea), Kilnamanagh Upper to the west (whose chief town is Borrisoleigh) and Middle Third to the south (whose chief town is Cashel).


  1. Placenames Database of Ireland – Templemore civil parish.
  2. [1][dead link]
  3. Irish Rail printable timetables. Irishrail.ie (20 January 2013).
  4. Lodge, John. The Peerage of Ireland or, A Genealogical History of the Present Nobility of That Kingdom, 1789, Vol IV, p 11.
  5. [2] Archived 21 July 2011 at the Wayback Machine
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 Walsh, Paul P., History of Templemore and its Environs (1991 & 2006).
  7. Arthur E. Carden, Carden of Templemore, 2010.
  8. ′′Slater's Commercial Directory of Ireland 1846′′, p. 314
  9. Tipperary Advocate, 30 November 1861. Transcribed by Patrick Bracken. Archived 20 November 2007 at the Wayback Machine
  10. [3] Archived 27 April 2008 at the Wayback Machine
  11. Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of Ireland, 1837.
  12. Garda College Yearbook 2007, p. 16. Docstoc.com (5 December 2011)
  13. Archived 22 February 2008 at the Wayback Machine
  14. History of Garda College on Garda website
  15. "Templemore Town Hall Fire". Cairogang.com. 1920-08-16. Retrieved 2015-10-18.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  16. "Bureau of Military History : Statement by Witness : W.S. 1454" (PDF). Bureauofmilitaryhistory.ie. Retrieved 2015-10-18.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  17. Sydney Herbert Beattie – Northampton Regiment. Cairogang.com.
  18. L/Cpl H J Fuggle, 10629. Cairogang.com.
  19. "Bureau of Military History : Statement by Witness : W.S. 1522" (PDF). Bureauofmilitaryhistory.ie. Retrieved 2015-10-18.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  20. Sergeant John Reynolds, ″A Brief History of Garda Síochána College″, Communique: An Garda Síochána Management Journal, December 2007.
  21. Private Frederick George Carroll, 5875962, 1st Northamptonshire Regiment. Cairogang.com.
  22. "Bureau of Military History : Statement by Witness : W.S. 1486" (PDF). Bureauofmilitaryhistory.ie. Retrieved 2015-10-18.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  23. Walsh, Comdt. Paul, F.C.A.: The Barracks and Posts of Ireland --9; Templemore Military Barracks; ′′An Cosantóir′′, p. 165 (1989).
  24. Placenames Database of Ireland: townlands in the civil parish. Logainm.ie.
  25. Anglican diocese of Cashel & Ossory. Cashel.anglican.org.
  26. [4] Archived 20 March 2008 at the Wayback Machine
  27. Brendan Bracken at, WinstonChurchill.org
  28. [5] Archived 19 November 2007 at the Wayback Machine

External links