Round Tower

I had planned to visit the round tower at the monastic site on Scattery Island but because of the 'Celebrate Scattery Festival' I was unable to get a boat till late in the afternoon, so I decided to visit some other monastic sites near Ennis. These sites included the round towers at Drumcliff, Killinaboy and Dysert O'Dea. There is very little known about the history of Drumcliff, but the site has always been associated with St Conald. The church and round tower are situated on a steep slope in the old cemetery. There are no features like windows or doors remaining but what is left of the drum is quite revealing about the construction of round towers. The drum is 2.4 metres high on the southside and rises to 11 metres high on the northside. The inner and outer faces of the drum are filled with mortared rubble, forming the traditional sandwich construction.

There are floor corbels visible on the first and second floors. The lowest 1.5 metres of the tower was constructed using large irregular shaped boulders with regularly coursed boulders above. The ground level is much lower on the northside but impossible to view as the tower stands on the boundary between the cemetery and private farmland. There is a barb-wired fence preventing access to the northside field. The large breech in the tower makes for a very dramatic ruin.

Situated: From the N65 at Ennis go east at the Claureen Roundabout, toward the city centre. Take the first left signed Drumcliff Cemetery. The Tower is on the left in the Old Cemetery.

Discovery Map 58: R 3282 8014. Last visit July 2014.

Longitude: 8° 59' 51" W

Latitude: 52° 52' 5" N

Google Map

Photos: Jim Dempsey.

Approx date: 10th/11th Century

Dimensions: Height 11 metres. Diameter 4.88 metres

Door: None. Type: Unknown

Windows: None

Features: None

Cap: Missing

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