The Pilgrims Rest Hotel Lismore - Cappoquin - County Waterford


Waterford


Viking raiders first established a settlement at Waterford in 853. Waterford and all the other longphorts were vacated in 902, the Vikings having being driven out by the native Irish. The Vikings re-established themselves in Ireland at Waterford in 914 and built what would be Ireland's first city. A list of the city's rulers from this date to the mayors of the present day can be found in Rulers of Waterford.


In 1137, Diarmuid MacMorrough, King of Leinster, failed in an attempt to take Waterford. He returned in 1170 with Norman mercenaries under Richard de Clare, 2nd Earl of Pembroke (Strongbow); together they besieged and took Waterford after a desperate defence. This was the introduction of the Anglo-Normans into Ireland. In 1171, Henry II of England landed at Waterford. Waterford and then Dublin were declared royal cities, Dublin was declared capital of Ireland.
Throughout the medieval period, Waterford was Ireland's second city after Dublin.

In the 15th century Waterford repelled two pretenders to the English throne: Lambert Simnel and Perkin Warbeck. As a result, King Henry VII gave the city its motto: Urbs Intacta Manet Waterfordia (Waterford remains the untaken city).
After the Protestant Reformation, Waterford remained a Catholic city and participated in the confederation of Kilkenny - an independent Catholic government from 1642-49. This was ended abruptly by Oliver Cromwell, who brought the country back firmly under English rule; his nephew Henry Ireton finally took Waterford in 1650 after a major siege.


The 18th century was a period of huge prosperity for Waterford. Most of the city's best architecture appeared during this time. In the 19th century, great industries such as glass making and ship building thrived in the city.
In July 1922, Waterford was the scene of fighting between Irish Free State and Irish Republican troops during the Irish Civil
Places of interest

A view from The Quays: "The Three Sisters" mix near the city before flowing into the harbour.
The old city of Waterford consists of various cultural quarters. The oldest is what has been referred to as the Viking triangle. This is the part of the city surrounded by the original 10th century fortifications, which is triangular in shape with its apex at Reginald's tower.

Though this was once the site of a thriving Viking town, the city centre has shifted to the west over the years, and it is now a quiet and tranquil area, dominated by narrow streets, medieval architecture, and civic spaces. Over the past decade, a number of restaurants have opened in High Street and Henrietta Street, taking advantage of the charming character of the area. Much of Waterford's impressive architecture is to be found in the Viking triangle.
In the 15th century, the city was enlarged with the building of an outer wall on the west side.

Today Waterford retains more of its city walls than any other city in Ireland with the exception of Derry (in Northern Ireland), whose walls were built much later. Tours of Waterford's city walls are conducted daily.


The Quay, once termed by historian Mark Girouard 'the noblest quay in Europe', is a mile long from Grattan Quay to Adelphi Quay, though Adelphi Quay is now a residential area.

It is still a major focal point for Waterford, commercially and socially, and the face that Waterford presents to those traveling into the city from the north. Near Reginald's Tower is the William Vincent Wallace Plaza, a monument and amenity built around the time of the millennium that commemorates the Waterford born composer.


John Roberts Square is a pedestrianised area that is one of the main focal points of Waterford's modern day commercial centre.


Cathedral of the Most Holy Trinity, Barronstrand Street, Waterford
It was named after the city's most celebrated architect, John Roberts, and was formed from the junction of Barronstrand Street, Broad Street and George's Street. It is often referred to locally as Red Square, due to the red paving that was used when the area was first pedestrianised.

A short distance to the east of John Roberts Square is Arundel Square, another square with a fine commercial tradition, which the City Square shopping centre opens onto.
Ballybricken, in the west, just outside the city walls, is thought to have been Waterford's Irishtown, a type of settlement that often formed outside Irish cities to house the Vikings and Irish that had been expelled during the Norman conquest of Ireland. Ballybricken is an inner city neighbourhood with a long tradition, centred around Ballybricken hill, which was a large, open market-square.

Today it has been converted into a green, civic space, but the Bull Post, where livestock was once bought and sold, still stands as a remnant of the hill's past.
The Mall is a fine Georgian thoroughfare, built by the Wide Streets Commission in order to extend the city southwards. It contains some of the city's finest Georgian architecture. The People's Park, Waterford's largest and finest park, is located nearby.


Ferrybank is Waterford city's only suburb north of the river. It contains a village centre of its own, and is often perceived as being somewhat isolated from the city, probably due to the wide expanse of the Suir, and the lack of convenient access between north and south of the river.
In April 2003 an important site combining a 5th century Iron Age and 9th century Viking settlement was discovered at Woodstown near the city, which appears to have been a Viking town that predates all such settlements in Ireland.

Culture

Museums
Waterford Museum of Treasures
Waterford Museum of Treasures, in the Granary on Merchant's Quay, is the city's foremost museum, housing a collection spanning over 1,000 years of the city's history.
Reginald's Tower
Reginald's Tower, the oldest urban civic building in the country, has performed numerous functions over the years. Today it is a civic museum.

Art galleries
Waterford Municipal Art Gallery
The Waterford Municipal Art Gallery has been housed in Greyfriars since 2001. It is the permanent home for the Municipal Art Collection, "A Gem Among Municipal Collections", over 200 paintings by Irish and International artists, including pieces from renowned artists such as Jack B Yeats, Paul Henry, Charles Lamb and Louis Le Brocquy.
Garter Lane
See below. Art exhibitions are often held here.
Dyehouse Gallery
Situated in Dyehouse Lane, the Dyehouse Gallery is the home of an art gallery and pottery works operated by the renowned Waterford potter Liz McKay.
Manifesto Gallery & Retail Emporium
Located in the historic "Port of Waterford" building in Georges Street. This landmark building was finished at the end of the 18th century for William Morris and was designed by celebrated local architect John Roberts. Manifesto occupies the ground floor of the building and features original work from national and international artists, sculptors, jewellers, ceramacists & wood turners.

Theatre
Waterford has two theatres: the Theatre Royal and Garter Lane.
The Theatre Royal
The Theatre Royal, on The Mall, was built in 1876, as part of a remodelled section of City Hall. It is a U-shaped, Victorian theatre, seating about 600 people.
Garter Lane
The Garter Lane Arts Centre, on O'Connell St., is housed in a Quaker meeting house that was built in 1792. The old meeting hall has been converted into a 200 seat theatre.
Waterford has three theatre companies: Red Kettle, Spraoi and Waterford Youth Arts.
Red Kettle
Red Kettle is a professional theatre company based in Waterford that regularly performs in Garter Lane.

Events

Spraoi
The Spraoi festival, organised by the Spraoi theatre company, is held in Waterford during the summer each year. It attracts crowds in the region of anywhere up to 80,000 people.
Waterford International Festival of Light Opera
The Waterford International Festival of Light Opera is an annual event that has been held in the Theatre Royal since 1959.
The Tall Ships
The Tall Ships festival, held in Waterford in 2005, marked the start of the Tall Ships race of that year. The Suir river provided a perfect berthing location for the numerous tall ships that lined the north and south quays, for almost a week. The festival attracted in the region of 450,000 people to the city in what was the biggest event ever held in Waterford or the south east. On the 27th of March, 2007, it was confirmed that Waterford will host the start of the Tall Ships race again in 2011.

Cinema

Waterford Cineplex
The cineplex is the only cinema in the city. (Although a new Multiplex cinema is set to open in the Railway Sq. complex in the summer of 2007)
Waterford Film For All
Waterford Film For All (WFFA) is a non-profit film society whose aim is to offer an alternative to the cineplex experience in Waterford. WFFA conduct much of the their activities on the Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT) campus.

Libraries
There are three public libraries in the city, all operated by Waterford City Council: Central Library, in Lady Lane; Ardkeen Library, in the Ardkeen shopping centre on the Dunmore Rd.; and Brown's Road Library, on Paddy Brown's Rd.
Central Library, or Waterford City Library, opened in 1905. It was the first of many Irish libraries funded by businessman Andrew Carnegie (Carnegie funded 2,509 libraries across the world). It was renovated in 2004 for its centenary.


Transport and infrastructure

Roads
Waterford is connected to other major centres via the N9 to Dublin, the N25 to Cork (west) and Rosslare (east) and the N24 to Limerick.
In and around the city itself, the N25 is soon to be re-routed to include the Waterford City Bypass, currently under construction, which will feature a second river crossing for the city. This project will include the Western Link road that will connect the bypass to the Outer Ring Road. The Outer Ring Road (R710), is a major road that encircles the south of the city. When the bypass and Western Link are finished by 2010, it will be possible to travel in a circle almost the entire way around the city, from the Dunmore Rd. to Slieverue in Co. Kilkenny.

Rail
The main train station at Waterford City is Plunkett station. It is located across Rice bridge on the north side of the Suir.
There are seven daily connections to Dublin, including the new early commuter departure at 6.10 am, implemented in 2006; 3 daily connections to Limerick Junction; and 1 daily connection to Rosslare Europort.
There are no direct lines between Waterford and Cork, although a change at Limerick Junction allows passengers to join the Dublin-Cork line. There is a direct line between Waterford and Limerick, but passengers must change at Limerick Junction on all services. There is also a direct line to Rosslare Europort.
A western rail corridor, linking Claremorris and Ennis, is included in the government's Transport 21 plan, due to complete in 2014. This corridor will make services between Waterford and Galway and Westport possible. It is also intended in the future to develop the line between Claremorris to Collooney, which will make services between Waterford and Sligo possible.
The Waterford & Suir Valley Railway follows 6km of the old Waterford to Dungarvan/Cork route on a narrow gauge line. It is a heritage route that runs between Waterford and Kilmeaden. The panoramic views from this line are considered to be exceptional.

Bus
Bus services are provided by Bus Éireann to all major Irish centres, and by JJ Kavanagh & Sons [20] to locations such as Dublin and Carlow. The Bus Éireann station is located on the quays opposite Dooleys Hotel and J.J. Kavanagh & Sons stop at both the Bus Éireann station and on Parnell St. Bus Éireann have ten daily services to Dublin Monday to Saturday with five on a Sunday. J.J. Kavanagh & Sons have ten daily departures to Dublin Monday to Saturday and nine on a Sunday.
City bus services are provided by Bus Éireann and by JJ Kavanagh & Sons [21]

Air
Waterford Airport, or South East Regional Airport, serves Waterford and the south east region. Aer Arann is currently the only carrier operating out of the airport.
It is currently possible to fly between Waterford and Birmingham, London Luton, Lorient (France) and Manchester.
All users of the airport are subject to a €5 tax which must be paid in cash.
There is an air sea rescue service operating out of Waterford Airport. This operation is currently contracted to a private operator, CHC Ireland. Rescue cover is provided for the ferry routes in and out Rosslare Europort and for the fishing grounds and commercial traffic off the south coast. A Sikorsky S-61 EI-SAR helicopter provides cover for this purpose.

Sea
The Port of Waterford is a major Irish port, and the closest one to mainland Europe. The port is on the River Suir, at Belview, Co. Kilkenny, 16 km (10 miles) from the open sea. It handles lo-lo, bulk liquid, bulk solid and breakbulk/general cargoes. It is the fastest growing port in Ireland. In 2005, 776 vessels called at the port carrying a total of 2.6 million tonnes of cargo. Container throughput in 2005 was 137,453 laden 20ft equivalent units.
The closest passenger port is Rosslare Europort (72 km (45 miles) away by road ), which has services to Fishguard, Pembroke, Cherbourg, Roscoff and Le Harve.

 

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