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18 May 2022

Holy Wells of Clare website set for February launch date

Holy Wells of Clare website set for February launch date

Pat Dowling, Chief Executive, Clare County Council; Congella McGuire, Heritage Officer, Clare County Council; Cllr PJ Ryan, Cathaoirleach, Clare County Council; Michael Houlihan, Holy Well Surveyor;

Clare County Council will officialy launch the Clare Holy Wells website Project on Tuesday, February 1 at 7:00pm. In recent years, surveyors Michael Houlihan and Tony Kirby have undertaken a labour of love, documenting hundreds of Clare’s holy wells. The result is a fascinating survey of a part of our heritage that holds a special place in the hearts of many Clare people.

Survey results can now be found on the Clare Holy Wells Project webpage of the Clare Heritage website at: https://heritage. clareheritage.org/category/ places/holy-wells

The launch will take place online via Zoom and celebrates the surveying and documenting of 237 holy wells in the county. 

For the first time, information on all of Clare’s holy wells is gathered in one place. The webpage can be searched by region as well as alphabetically. Maps, photographs and detailed information bring the stories of these wells alive.

According to Cathaoirleach of Clare County Council, Cllr PJ Ryan: “Local knowledge was crucial during the survey and many people responded to requests for information.”

“Holy wells are usually located in quiet and beautiful places but are often also remote,” said Clare Heritage Officer, Congella McGuire. “The surveyors Michael Houlihan and Tony Kirby often needed assistance from local people to locate them, as they visited all 237 known holy wells in Clare.”

“We’d now like people to consult the website, where all the findings are collated. We would love to get feedback, further information, and even more local stories from the public. The website is a dynamic resource, and we will continue to add to it,” concluded Ms McGuire.

Visit the Clare Holy Wells project at: https://heritage. clareheritage.org/category/ places/holy-wells

All are welcome at the online launch. To register your interest please email: clareholywells@gmail.com  

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