Mal­low — the cross­roads of Mun­ster

Irish Examiner - County - - News - Jim Cough­lan

Mal­low is about thirty-five kilo­me­tres north of Cork. It is the largest town along the lovely Black­wa­ter Val­ley, and a good cen­tre from which to ex­plore that river and many in­ter­est­ing lo­ca­tions nearby.

Up to a cen­tury ago, it was renowned as a spa, with crowds of vis­i­tors fre­quent­ing it — crowds whose be­hav­iour gave rise to the well-known song

Mal­low is well known for sport­ing ac­tiv­ity in­clud­ing an­gling and horse rac­ing at Mal­low Race Course, with sev­eral im­por­tant meet­ings tak­ing place through­out the year.

In 1598, Mal­low Cas­tle was built by Sir Thomas Nor­reys. It was later de­stroyed and burned by the Ja­co­bites in 1689. The ru­ins can still be seen to­day at the the South east end of the town. The 33-acre site is com­posed of gar­dens and park­land on which three build­ings sit — the re­mains of a 16th-cen­tury for­ti­fied house, a 19th­cen­tury man­sion to the north, and the ru­ins of a 13th-cen­tury cas­tle to the east. The cas­tle was des­ig­nated as a Na­tional Mon­u­ment in 1928.

If you are in­ter­ested in fam­ily his­tory, Mal­low Her­itage Ge­neal­ogy Cen­tre is well worth a visit. With over 3 mil­lion en­tries on their data­base (the third largest data­base of records in the coun­try), they can help you trace your an­ces­tors in County Cork.

As of the 2016 Cen­sus, Mal­low has a pop­u­la­tion of 8,793.

Mal­low Cas­tle and grounds in a photo dated April 5, 1958.

The Tu­dor-style Spa House, built in 1828 at Spa Glen, Mal­low, pho­tographed in 1933.

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