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Photographer's Note

Pictured here is one of the grave monuments in the cemetery at Skreen Church, on the top of the Hill of Skryne, Co Meath. The landscape beyond shows County Meath, known as the Royal County for it once being home to the High Kings of Ireland.

The church is sited prominently on top of the hill, visible for miles around and replaced an older church dedicated to St Columba. It is named after a shrine to the saint which once existed here.

Skreen was built in 1341 by a descendant of Hugh de Lacy of Skryne Castle. The Hill of Skryne is 500 feet in height, and with the western facing 100 foot high church tower, this historic site makes a dramatic impact on the surrounding landscape. The tower does in fact seem much taller than this if you stand in its shadow looking up at it. It is also clearly visible from many local roads and the M3 motorway.

The cross pictured here is relatively small at about 4 feet tall.

The tower of the church is in relatively good condition but the rest of the building is in total ruin with the south walls completely destroyed. There are however some excellent decorative windows and a fine arched doorway still intact, and the remains of a staircase which allows you to climb up onto the North Wall of the building for an even better view of the Meath countryside.

The cemetery is dotted with monuments in the overgrowth including normal crosses like the one pictured, Celtic crosses, table tombs and column monuments.

The hill of Skryne sits on the Tara - Skryne Valley, and is actually taller than its better known neighbor, the Hill of Tara, one time seat to the High King of ancient Ireland.

Thanks for looking!

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Additional Photos by Noel Byrne (Noel_Byrne) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 2231 W: 8 N: 4984] (17381)
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