A SMALL TOWN IN WEST CORK

Today during my walk around town, I took some more photos to add to my photo database on Skibbereen town.  I have made this place my own since I came to live here in the nineteen-eighties.  A small market town in West Cork, it has a population of about two thousand.  There is quite a bit of history attached to this town, as is natural of course.  The river Illen runs through it and is a great asset and could be made an even greater focal point.  Anyway, Skibbereen has so much to offer, it has a well run and active Art Centre, beautiful shops, even seven charity shops, and it is quite close to the coast.  I have so much I would like to see happening in the future planning of this town.

So I started to make a collection of photos of all sort of corners and angles of this lovely place, actually I have not even started yet when I think of how much I can still do.  It makes my walks interesting, a great hobby of mine.  Town planning and architecture has always interested me, when I used to paint water colours many years ago I was always excited about townscapes, the shapes of roofs and little corners, so pleasing to the eye.

A WALK AT DUSK AROUND THE TOWN

First walk around the town for a long time, the ring road is quite a lovely walk with lots of shrubs and the river Ilen, making it interesting. Normally it would only take about 15minutes but I took over half an hour, was taking some photos also. It was lovely and mild this evening and the walk was very pleasant. The town of Skibbereen (in Irish called An Sciobairín), is not very large, originally a market town, it’s got quite a bit of history.

I find it fascinating that the by-gone days of this little town can be traced back to medieval times when survivors of the black dead, mainly members of the McCarthy’s clan, to whom most of the land belonged in those days, settled near a hamlet, at the site of the present town, this in the 14th century.
In the 17th century many refugees from the little seaside village of Baltimore (about 12km towards the sea coast) fled to Skibbereen town after Baltimore was sacked by the Algerians.
During 1845-49 Ireland was plagued with a terrible famine. In Skibbereen’s local cemetery there is a mass grave where around 10,000 victims lay buried. This decimated the town and area once again.

The present town is doing fine, though very much affected by the austerity and emigration since 2008. Many young people leaving to find work, and quite a few businesses having to close down. The Farmer’s market is thriving, and there is still a nice, relaxed buzz about the town. A brand new state of the art Art Gallery is about to be opened to the delight of us all. But I could go on and on…. I did enjoy my walk, that is for sure. Here a few pics taken with my mobile phone.

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FROM RED CLOVER TO SWANS ~ ALONG MY WALK ~

Red Clover

I took myself on a walk this afternoon.  It was very sunny and warm and I came across lots of wild plants and then discovered some swans right in the middle of our little town.  There is a narrow river running through the town, a meander of the Illen river which also runs through the town.  It’s great to see all types of wildlife even in an urban setting.

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The heart of a Calendula flower                                      And the delicate petals of a Dandelion

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This garden spider has been living in the garden now for weeks.  And plenty of Dandelion seeds for next year’s growth.

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Magnificent swan

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A signet and a beautiful duck ~ all in the town.