Photographer's Note

Pictured here is the Yew Walk on the grounds of Gormanston Castle in Co Meath. It lies just south of Drogheda and about 30km north of Dublin. It is on the Meath side of the Meath / Dublin border and close to the river Delvin.

The castle itself here dates to 1786 and it was built by the Preston family on the exact site of a former castle. It is an impressive building, quadrangle in plan and with towers on three of the four corners. The front elevation of the building is three stories in height and the main entrance is flanked by two more narrow towers. The castle is a beautiful example of old architecture which has been maintained perfectly and still holds all the graces of such an impressive family estate.

In 1947, the castle was sold to the Franciscan order who developed a school here. The castle itself opened as a school in 1954 and a new additional college building was built in 1955. The castle remains as a school today, with over 500 students in attendance.

What we see in this image here is one of the most remarkable features on the castles grounds, known as the Yew Walk. This is a foliage enclosed triangluar area which dates back hundreds of years. It is entered through a huge hedge, and beyond is this spooky row of twisted yew trees which lead from the caslte itself to the graveyard. Buried here are serveral members of the Franciscan order including both nuns and priests as well as some students of the school.

It is a strange feeling, leaving the old castle behind, steeping through the hedge and finding this spooky row leading to a cemetery. It is not visible from the castle at all, fully enclosed by the surrounding trees, and can only be seen once you step inside. As you walk down the pathway, light falls through the sinuous tree branches creating a somewhat otherworldly feeling. At the end, you step back out again and find yourself in a very peaceful and tranquil cemetery. At its head is a large wall against which is placed a modern statue of Christ in the arms of Mary, and spread before this is the graves of those interred here. Its a beautiful addition to the castles grounds.

I have a post of the castle iteself here

Special thanks for to John Maenhout (JHM) for showing me how to create links. Thanks John!!

Thanks for looking!

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Additional Photos by Noel Byrne (Noel_Byrne) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4173 W: 26 N: 9238] (33764)
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