Wednesday, 11 February 2015

Another Walk Along The North Side Of The Sheep's Head Peninsula.


 Do you have a similar sign on your main road?
Four heifers watching us go for our four mile saunter.  They are Aberdeen Angus ("Black Polly") and a White Head.  

It's the start of the slurry spreading season here in West Cork.  
 
 Some rooks waiting on the electricity wires.

 The old gate entrance to the old Anglican church.  It's for sale.  Think it would make a restaurant or a great holiday home.

 The church was built for the Cornish tin and lead mine workers and their families.  You can still see their traditional 'herring bone' weave pattern in some of the dry-stone walls.  The church closed in the eighties and there is no longer any Anglican churches on our side of the peninsula.  I remember visiting the church with my father's relatives when we were little.

 The church from the West side.  Curiously some of it is made of brick.  I wonder if they made the brick from the clay they extracted when mining or they imported them from Blighty?  Most dwellings and buildings are made of stone or concrete and rendered and painted these days.  Notice the fenced off sheep dip?


One of the old empty dwellings that I told you about last week.



 See the old horse shoes placed in the corners of the gable?
 A friendly donkey poses for it's photograph.
 A ruined fishermen's/farmstead.  My mother used to tell me about this house when we went on walks when I was little.  Apparently one fateful night.  A young girl went outside during a storm. She was swept off the rocks and was never seen again!  The buildings were covered in ivy until recently and the land owner cleared the vegetation.  Leaving it like it was when I was a youngster.


We noticed this wonderful dry-stone wall bridge.  It carries a private road and the stream drains into the bay.  My dad use to catch eels in it when he was young.  The bridge made me think of "Billy Goat Gruff" and the troll that lived under the bridge.


Pussy willow starting to bud.  I told you Spring was on it's way.  

32 comments:

  1. Thanks for sharing your walk Dave, I love your pics. We have a cows crossing sign on the way into the next village along. It used to make Twiglet giggle with delight if we had to stop on the way to nursery to let them cross, especially if one of them 'did their biz on the road'as he put it :)
    Twiggy

    ReplyDelete
  2. I am pleased you like the pictures Twiggy. They were only taken from a mobile phone. But they are not bad. Will pass on your compliments to the photographer.

    Yes it's great when the dairy herds paint the country roads with their cow pats and cow lemonade. I always smile when I see postcards with pictures of waiting cars and the cows walking down the road, with the caption:

    "Irish traffic jam."

    Thanks!

    ReplyDelete
  3. I'd pay you good money for that gate

    ReplyDelete
  4. If you buy the church, you get the gate, John. There are plenty of good antique and salvage yards in North Wales. Thanks!

    ReplyDelete
  5. do you know anything about why the horse shoes are in the wall?

    ReplyDelete
  6. Such an interesting walk. Like Sol I am interested in the horse shoes. Are the derelict buildings on privately owned farms or on small plots?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Glad you found the walk interesting Philip. Rural Ireland is full of derelict farmsteads and dwellings. The derelict buildings are on private land.

      Delete
  7. Their you go I have just learnt from the internet that people did that because of witches. the iron repels witches and fairy folk. If you find them embedded in the chimney it is because they believed the witches could use it as a portal to get into your house and take you to the Netherworld. They are also placed in door ways and windows to stop spirits living half in half out.

    There may even be animal skulls (horse) in the four corners of the house.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Sol. Thanks for telling us about that. I have heard of the people long a go opening the back door and front door to let the lightning out. Fascinating stuff!

      Delete
    2. its not just in Ireland, it would seem that it was thought that Norfolk was plagued by Witches... from the things I read online

      Delete
    3. I love folklore and tales of mystery Sol. I suppose if they saw the Internet. The people long ago would think it was witchcraft?

      Delete
  8. Thanks for that. Genuinely interesting and something to look out for in the future and speak with authority on these matters to anyone accompanying me.

    ReplyDelete
  9. I enjoyed these photographs Dave. We were only talking about cows walking down the main roads and the traffic having to wait when we were at school, even down the main London trunk road. Now all the cows are gone from around here.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Glad you liked them Rachel. It's sad that you don't see the cows any more. Thanks!

      Delete
  10. A most excellent walk my man...... that church would make a lovely home methinks

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi John. Thanks. Yes it would make a lovely home. Thanks!

      Delete
  11. Lovely renovation project there with the church Dave, does it have any land, and how far is it from the nearest town, do you know the price? I ask as we have friends thinking about relocating to Ireland from Spain and a project like that would be right up their street. Mind you we would have gone for it as well ten years back.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Anne. Google: Killoveenoge church. It's just over 5 miles from Bantry. There is a You Tube video of it. Think it's on 0.5 acres. But I am sure local farmer's like myself would rent them a field.

      Delete
  12. Thanks for sharing your walk Dave. I love the old church and that's interesting sbout the horse shoes, I've not seen that before.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am pleased you enjoyed it Deb. Sol's explanation sounds very logical. The Irish are very superstitious and my grandmother believed in changelings and the fairy folk. Thanks!

      Delete
  13. We do have a 'beware cows crossing' sign on our local main road and I've been caught there many times as the girls go up and down for milking :o)

    Great post Dave, full of interesting things. The horse shoes were fascinating (thanks Sol for the explanation as I was wondering too!). Lovely that you have such a close family history with the place too. L and I used to play the troll game every time we crossed a bridge when he was little. Brought back many happy memories. CT.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Glad you enjoyed this post, CT. Yes Sol came up with a fascinating explanation for the horseshoes placed in the gable of the old cottage.

      We know that my dad's family have been here since at least the 1830's. It's good to make new memories too.

      Thanks!

      Delete
  14. Enjoyed accompanying you on your walk in pictures.
    Can you still catch Eel's in your area?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Just watched you tube of church. The building, especially the roof, is beautiful. The scenery; stunning.

      Delete
    2. Hi Irene. Glad you liked the walk. Dunno if there are eels now. Highly possible because they swim to the Sargosso sea to breed via the Atlantic. Thanks!

      Delete
    3. Yes it's sad that the church is no longer in use. It was designed by a William Atkins who also designed Cork lunatic asylum.

      Their was an ancient Killoveenoge ("Church of the young women" I think?) on the site and it was ransacked by the Danes in the 9th century.

      There are absolutely stunning views of Bantry bay and the Beara peninsula. Thanks!

      Delete
  15. Nice to have taken a stroll with you around your part of the world, and what struck me most was how much of the landscape was in your own personal history. I have moved many times from the place where I was born (Dartford, Kent, UK) so do not have that memory association.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Vera. Yes it's nice to have a sense of belonging to a place even though you weren't born there. I have moved several times myself. I am pleased you enjoyed the stroll. Thanks!

      Delete
  16. Nice walk, but so sad to see the many derelict buildings. Wish I was about 30 years younger, I'd love to take on that church and restore it to a dwelling.

    Horse-shoes in the Lake District were traditionally fixed over doors, open end up, it was supposed to bring good luck. And a date carved into the lintol over the front door of the house, with builders and owners initials.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Cumbrian. Ireland is full of derelict buildings. Some go back to the famine and some don't even have owners. People died or emigrated and nobody knows who owns them.

      Yes I have heard of up turned horse shoes for good luck. We painted our initials and the date on the render when we built our little dwelling. Thanks!

      Delete
  17. Interesting walk, especially learning the history of the church. Cornish miners get everywhere. There is a saying that if you look down any hole in the ground across the world, there will be a Cornish miner at the bottom.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes Chickpea. A lot of them left Ireland and went to America when the price of tin dropped. Like you say there are Cornish miners everywhere in the world!

      Delete