Limerick county is one of the thirty two counties of the Island of Ireland and is located in the country’s South West district.
Limerick city is the 3rd city of Ireland by population.
Limerick city is home to the iconic & historic Thomond Park rugby grounds. Residents consider Limerick the rugby capital of Ireland.
The river Shannon is the longest river in Britain & Ireland and flows through Limerick before it enters the Atlantic ocean further out the Shannon Estuary.
In 1963 JFK visited Limerick and gave a speech at the Greenpark Racecourse.
On 01 October 1979, Pope John Paul the 2nd visited Limerick and 400,000 people turned up to see & hear him (far more than was expected). Greenpark Racecourse was again the venue and MB still remembers being in attendance.
In 1869 Mary Williams was sentenced to 14 days hard labour in Limerick for Blasphemy.
The last person to be hanged in Ireland was 25 year old Michael Manning from Limerick who on Tuesday 20 April 1954 became the 24th and last person to be executed in the Republic of Ireland. He had been found guilty the previous February of the rape and murder of Catherine Cooper, a 65-year-old nurse, who worked at Barrington’s Hospital in the city. The execution by hanging was carried out in Mountjoy Prison, Dublin by Albert Pierrepoint, who had travelled from Britain where he was one of three Senior Executioners. A fellow inmate of Manning’s recalled later, Friends of mine who worked with me, I was serving my time at the time, went up to visit him on the Sunday before he was hanged. And they went to mass and holy communion together and they played a game of handball that day. He couldn’t have been more normal. Manning’s body was buried in an unmarked grave in a yard at Dublin’s Mountjoy Prison.
Limerick is the birthplace of the author Frank McCourt (now deceased) who wrote Angela’s Ashes which was published in 1996 and won a Pulitzer Prize. Great read!
The highest mountain in Limerick is Galtymore – approximately 919m high and is situated on the border with County Tipperary. It is Ireland’s 14th highest peak.
In 1650/51 Cromwellian troops laid siege to Limerick. 2,000 of the troops perished in the battle against the local defenders and Cromwell’s son-in-law Henry Ireton died of plague during the period of the siege. Coins from Cromwell’s troops have been excavated in the Grange Stone Circle at MB’s HX home locality, resulting from their overnight encampment in the circle on their way to the city some twelve miles further North.
The nearby international airport of Shannon (located in County Clare) ensures a steady flow of foreign tourists to the city and county. It’s also a good location from which to tour the very picturesque county of Kerry to the South (google ‘Ring Of Kerry’) and the Clare coastline to the North (google ‘Cliffs Of Moher’). Lough Gur lake and nearby Neolithic age monuments are of interest in Limerick itself, as are St John’s Castle, The Hunt Museum, amongst other venues.
In 812 the Vikings sailed up the Shannon and pillaged the city, burned the monastery of Mungret but were forced to flee when the Irish attacked and killed many of their number. The Normans redesigned the city in the 12th century and added much of the most notable architecture, such as King John’s Castle and St Mary’s Cathedral.
Limerick was Ireland’s city of culture in 2014.
If you are visiting the city and buying the beer, MB will be pleased to meet you!
River Shannon – taken by MB yesterday 27 December 2014: