Irish Blog Whacked

Thursday, May 9, 2013


Plan to sell Coillte harvesting rights may be shelved ?

People attending the “Walk in the Woods” protest on Sunday.  Photograph: Eric Luke
People attending the “Walk in the Woods” protest on Sunday. Photograph: Eric Luke
The Government is moving closer to dropping its plan to sell off the harvesting rights of State forestry company Coillte as part of a privatisation plan agreed with the EU-IMF troika.
Certain Government sources are adamant that the initiative remains in the balance but remarks two days ago by Minister for Communications Pat Rabbitte are said to point the way for the plan to be shelved indefinitely.
Mr Rabbitte told the Dáil that the “mooted privatisation of Coillte looks more unlikely every day”, after which Taoiseach Enda Kenny made a point of saying the matter remained under consideration.
The stewardship of Coillte falls under the remit of Minister for Agriculture Simon Coveney and he is not expected to bring the matter to the Cabinet until Tuesday week.
In Government circles, however, expectation is building that the Coillte plan will be set aside. “It’s not really a priority,” said a senior Coalition figure.

Potential merger
While a potential merger of Coillte assets with Bord na Móna is also under examination, a definitive move in that direction is not imminent .
Amid public protests at the prospect of selling off the Coillte harvesting rights, there is a sense in Government that the uncertainty over the company’s future should be put to rest soon.
Last Sunday crowd of about 3,000 people – including actors, artists and politicians – gathered in Avondale Park, Co Wicklow, to protest at plans to sell the harvesting rights.
The march, organised by the Woodland League and the National Resources Protection Alliance, featured poetry readings and picnics and a tree was planted by actor Sinead Cusack. Singer Christy Moore played at the protest.
Of more immediate interest than Coillte in Government circles right now is the push to sell off Bord Gáis Energy. An information memorandum is to be circulated to prospective investors in the coming days.
The Government hopes to execute this sale – and the disposal of ESB power station interests in Amorbieta, Spain, and Marchwood, England – by the end of the year.

Harvesting rights
By contrast, informed sources said questions over the valuation of the Coillte assets and potential investor demand have emerged in the official examination of the harvesting rights.
While certain well-placed observers insist these issues are not insurmountable and that a reasonable level of investor interest could be expected should the sale process go ahead, others say the sale process is now very unlikely to proceed.
Five separate valuation exercises have been scrutinised by the Government, three of them by the NewERA division of the National Treasury Management Agency, which oversees commercial semi-State bodies.
In the Dáil last February, Minister for Public Expenditure Brendan Howlin said the official examination of the Coillte assets was complex and that the Government was proceeding with caution.
He said then that the Government must bear in the mind the need to ensure the stability of the entire timber industry, which was important from the jobs perspective, and the need to maximise the recreational and biodiversity value of Ireland’s forests

The Flowers that Bloom in the Spring Tra-La …

May 2013   Christy Moore.
In recent weeks I have had enjoyed some special gigs. On April 2nd I visited the Keltoi Centre in The Phoenix Park where I sang with people in recovery from addiction. It was an emotional but fun filled gathering. Some of them came up and sang beautiful songs. Thanks to Kieran and all the staff there for making it happen. Great atmosphere and healing plus strong tea and mighty sandwiches.
On April 18th I travelled to Derry lovely Derry. A great crowd assembled on the Banks of The Foyle River. His Holiness the Dalai Lama crossed the Peace Bridge with Richard Moore and a host of children. They entered a fine tent where thousands had gathered to hear The Dalai Lama speak. The event was to mark the work of Children in Crossfire. His words can be heard by clicking HERE
Richard Moore invited me to sing and I sang this song "How Long” from Jackson Browne.
When you look into a Childs face
You are seeing all the human race
The endless possibilities there
Where so much can come through
And you think of the beautiful things
A child can do
How long can a child survive
How long if it was up to you
When you think about the money spent
on defence by government
and the weapons of destruction they build
then tell us we need
and you think of the millions and millions
that money could feed
How long can you hear someone crying
How long can you hear someone dying
Before you ask yourself why
How long will we hear people speak
About missiles for peace and let it go by
How long will they tell us these weapons are keeping us free
It's a lie
If you saw it from a satellite
all the green and with its blue and white
The beauty of the curve of the earth
And the oceans below
You might think it was paradise
If you didn't know
You might think it was turning
But it's turning so slow
How long can you hear someone crying?
How long can you hear someone dying?
Before you ask yourself why
How long will it be till we've turned
To the tasks and the skills that we'll have to have learned
If we're going to find a place in the future
Have something to offer to the children of the world
Leaving Derry afterwards, having spent some hours in the presence of His Holiness and his people, having heard him share his philosophies on forgiveness and compassion, on peace and tolerance, I knew that my own prejudices and resentments had been challenged, that I might never think in the same way again. I am still absorbing it all.
On April 22nd it was into The City Hall, Dublin where The South African Ambassador was launching an event to remember Irelands Anti-Apartheid Movement. He invited me in to sing "The Dunnes Stores Song" (by Sandra Kerr) and The Biko Drum" (by Wally page) There were many dignitaries present. One of our Government Ministers was there plus many trade union officials, journalists, photographers and a good smattering of old (like myself) activists. Surprisingly there was not one woman from the Dunnes Stores Strike. I can’t figure out whether that was an oversight, a decision or an impossibility. I'm working on it. I dedicated the following song to The Dunnes Stores Strikers, and to two trade union workers Tommy Davis and Brendan Barron, who were very supportive of the strike.
Mary Manning
Karen Gearon
Catherine O'Reilly
Theresa Mooney
Vonnie Munroe
Sandra Griffin
Alma Russell
Michelle Gavin
Liz Deasy
Dorothy Dooley
The Dunnes Stores Strike (Sandra Kerr)
Close your eyes and come with me back to 1984
We’ll take a walk down Henry St to Dunnes Department store
The supermarket's busy, the registers make a din
The groceries go rollin’ out and the cash comes rollin’ in

Mary Manning is at the checkout trying to keep warm,
A customer comes up to her a basket on her arm
The contents of that basket Mary's future was to shape
The label clearly stated, produce of The Cape

I can’t check out your oranges Mam, you'll have to put them back
They come from South Africa where The White oppress The Black
I'd have it on my conscience I couldn't sleep at night
If I helped support a system that denies Black People's Rights
The managers descended in an avalanche of suits
Mary was suspended cos she wouldn't touch the fruits
No one was goin' to tell Ben Dunne what he bought or sold
These women are only workers they must do as they are told

Isn’t that just typical of the way Apartheid works
It’s not just in South Africa that the Boss man calls the shots
Dunne's wouldn't have a boycott, couldn’t give a tinkers curse
Don’t matter how they filled the shelves so long as they lined his purse
Goodwill and solidarity came from all around the world
Such concern and sacrifice, such courage brave and bold
When 14 months were over 10 women and a man
Had helped to raise black consciousness all around the land

Clerys in O'Connell St stopped sellin' South African shoes
Best Man sent all their clothes back, Roches stores their booze
Til all South African Goods were taken off the shelves in Dunnes
Mary Manning was down in Henry St and she was sticking to her guns
On Saturday the 27th I had a great gig in Vicar Street with Martin O'Connor, Shamie O'Dowd, Cathal Hayden and Jimmy Higgins. It was our 5th outing. I love playing with these musicians. We hope to continue on this journey.When the stars are in alignment and when we all have corresponding gaps in our work schedules, The music will continue …
Here is the setlist;
1. How Long
2. Arthur’s Day
3. Dunnes Stores
4. Ruby Walsh
5. DTs
6. Yellow Furze Woman
7. Magdalene laundry
8. Natives.
9. Quiet desperation
I was joined on stage by Martin, Shamie, Cathal and Jimmy, We did;
10. Chicago
11. Butterfly
12. McIlhatton
13 Finglas Boys
14 Smoke and Whiskey
15 St Brendan's Voyage
16. Michael Hayes
17. Sullivan’s John
18. Merseyside
19. Blue Rose
20. Missing You
21. Sally gardens
22 On the Mainland
23. The Blackbird.
24. Bogman
25. Back home in Derry
26. Ride On
27. Ord Man
28. Voyage
29. Yellow Triangle
30. Joxer
31. Black is The Colour
You can listen to Sullivan's John by clicking the link here ... Sullivan's John

The following day we made our way to Avondale where thousands had gathered protest against the proposed sale of our Woods and Forests. As I made my way towards the platform a man pressed a lyric into my hand. Sitting side stage I looked it over and decided to read it out. It was written by Paul whose Facebook moniker is Drum Stig… He is involved with Rage Against The Regime, who will be holding a gig on 13th June in the Grand Social … You can check out their webpage by clicking HERE
Also, you can check out their facebook page by clicking HERE
A Tree Falls in The Forest
If a tree falls in the forest – and there’s no one around to hear it – does it make a sound?
Surely the real question is “Why is there no one around?”
Where are the ramblers and the hill walkers?
Where are the Sunday strollers?
Where are the horse riders, taking their mounts from the soulless open field they’ve stood in all week up to the majestic, soulful mountain forests?
Where are the mountain bikers, risking life and limb with breakneck descents or straining on all the impossible climbs of their carefully mapped trails?
Where are the young families who bring their children to the wonderland of deer and squirrels and rabbits and foxes?
Where are the kids who don’t walk in the woods but actually explore the jungles hunting bear and tiger and wolf?
Where are the cowboys and the Indians, the wizards and the dragon slayers?
Where are the fairy queens and the sleeping beauties and the wood nymphs?
Where are the artists, the writers, the musicians, the poets who come to fill their souls with the spirit of the land and speak to the muse?
Where are the lovers who escape the glare of the city and find the silence to allow their hearts to beat loudly together?
Where are the people who come to speak to their loved ones passed on because the pain is too great in their homes or “life” does not go on without a place to grieve?
Is there no one around because the people entrusted with management of their country have betrayed their people and, for the price of a treasonous signature, have sold the land to faceless, soulless, heartless corporations who erect signs telling you you're now on private property?
Is there no one around because the government care nothing about the land and less about the people?
Because Taoisigh, Ministers and Public Servants have no hesitation in RAPING their own country, and when they have taken what they can, have no hesitation in PROSTITUTING out the carcass of the ancient land of their fathers to the highest bidder.
Neither will they hesitate to pursue, prosecute, convict and incarcerate any man, woman or child who trespasses on private property which they once owned as citizens of a sovereign nation.
Is there no one around because our Public Servants do not serve the public, but serve themselves in a continuous orgy of money worship and abuse of power?
If we do nothing to stand against this unholy destruction of our beautiful country our children will not be asking “if a tree falls in the forest and no one is around, does it make a sound?”… Our children and our grandchildren will be asking us …
“Daddy, what was it like to walk in a forest?”
You can see some footage of the event by clicking HERE
 I sense an awakening around us. People are preparing to stand against oppression, austerity, cut backs, selloffs, awful corruption in high places and robbers walking free. lies are ringing louder these days.
On it goes – the quest for songs and places to sing them…
Just packing the bags for The Black Mountain - Two more nights in The Waterfront. I have not gigged with Declan Sinnott for over a month. I’m rearing to go, to hear his fender'n fuzz box, his Spanish, his folk jumbo, I've a feeling there may be long sets looming…
Some new gigs up on the Gig page and more to follow… next album release planned for November. Bealtaine (May) is upon us once more - what’s another year...
Shine On… Christy Moore.

Viceroyals Evilliers


Viceroyal Villiers of Ireland Direct Descendant of George William Frederick Villiers, 4th Earl of Clarendon George William Frederick Villiers, Viceroyal of Ireland, who was a notable member of the Hellfire Club and the Freemasons. He ruled over the British genocide of six and a quarter million disappeared Irish people, many of them children, murdered in secret satanic rituals by the British gentry. These rituals have continued under the despotic rule of both Villiers reign of terror. Viceroyal Theresa Villiers is today also presiding over the internment without trial of Irish political prisoners, indeed this evil Viceroyal has the power to throw anyone irish into a dungeon indefinitely without triaL. Currently two innocent, elderly, Irish people, Martin Corey, 63 and Marian Price, 59 are spending their last years interned and will probably die at her majesty's pleasure.  This family has now become known in Ireland as the Viceroyal Evilliers 

The Kincora Scandal

The results of the official police investigations into the Kincora Scandal are "Sealed" to this day because of the influence of certain UK political heavy-weights! The Kincora children were taken to Birr Castle , County Offaly, the family home of the 7th Earl of Rosse, where abuse took place!( Confirmed by Joan Coleman of R.A.I.N.S, England) NB The ancestor of the present Earl , the 1st Earl of Rosse in the eighteenth century was a British founder member of the infamous branch in Ireland of The Hellfire Club, Britain's's aristocratic devil-worshippers! in Ireland.

Investigations into the Dunblane Massacres of nursery school children has also been "sealed" by the socalled "UK authorities" under the pretence of national security is another coverup by the status quo in the UK!Investigations into the Operation ORE inquiries into paedophile rings within the UK establishment and politicians has once again been "sealed" by the socalled "UK authorities" - covering for powerful paedophiles!A similar situation pertains in the Jersey Child abuse scandal - which has links to paedophile groups in Islington in London!

The Hellfire Club British Members


 Original founding members of the Irish branch of the Hellfire Club

Birr Castle , Co Offaly, ancestral home of
  • 1st Earl of Rosse, Richard Parsons
  • James Worsdale , painter.
  • Colonel St Ledger from Grange Mellon near Athy .
  • Old Bagenal , ( Bagenalstown was obviously named after him or his kin; a hotbed for Satanic activity in these present times)
  • Buck Whaley

Satanists, the gentry and Freemasons

Human sacrifice has been a terrible reality for possibly as long as man has existed on this world! The upper classes have brainwashed the naive and gullible masses into believing that these sort of things only happen in books and myths.

History shows us that the aristocracy , especially those with old Norman roots, have been the pioneers and subsequently those with the greatest knowledge in the studies of these dark arts and forbidden knowledge! The old Norman Knights Templars, are believed to have been aristocratic devilworshippers.

The Templars went to the Holy lands during the Crusades wars between the European Christians and the Saracens to search for "The Arch of the Covenent". They believed that the Arch held magical powers and those who had possession of it would be the recipients of great power and knowledge.

In the middle ages , the Templars were seen as heretics and worshippers of the devil and were persecuted by the Spanish Inquisition and were bannished from most European countries for the exception of Portugal and Scotland. It is believed that the Knights Templars resurfaced in Scotland in its new guise of the Freemasons.

In later years many prominent Lords and gentry , again descendents of the old Norman aristocracy, became leading figures in the Freemasons! One prime example was; in 1725 ,Richard Parsons , 1st Earl of Rosse was Grand Master of Ireland's Freemasons . At the same instance , Richard Parsons was also one of the founder members of Ireland's aristocratic Satanist cult , The Hellfire Club! Co-incidence?? I don't think so!!!!

Montpelier Hill

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Montpelier Hill
Hell Fire Club
Hell Fire Club Dublin at Dawn.jpg
Dawn at the Hell Fire Club on Montpelier Hill, Dublin
Elevation383 m (1,257 ft)[1]
Montpelier Hill is located in island of Ireland
Montpelier Hill
Location in Ireland
LocationCounty DublinIreland
RangeDublin Mountains
OSI/OSNI gridO120238
Coordinates53°15′6.7″N 6°19′49.24″WCoordinates53°15′6.7″N 6°19′49.24″W[1]
Topo mapOSI Discovery #50
Montpelier Hill is a hill, 383 metres (1,257 feet) high in County DublinIreland.[1]It is commonly referred to as the Hell Fire Club (IrishClub Thine Ifrinn),[2] the popular name given to the ruined building at the summit. This building – a hunting lodge built around 1725 by William Conolly – was originally called Mount Pelier and since its construction the hill has also gone by the same name.[3] The original Irish name of the hill is no longer known although the historian and archaeologist Patrick Healy has suggested that the hill is the place known as Suide Uí Ceallaigor Suidi Celi in the Crede Mihi, the twelfth century diocesan register book of theArchbishops of Dublin.[4]
Montpelier is the closest to Dublin city of the group of mountains – along with Killakee, Featherbed Bog, KippureSeefingan, Corrig, Seahan, Ballymorefinn, Carrigeenoura and Slievenabawnogue – that form the ridge that bounds the Glenasmole valley.[5] On the slopes is a forestry plantation, known as Hell Fire Wood, which consists of Sitka sprucelarch and beech.[6]
Originally there was a cairn with a prehistoric passage grave on the summit. Stones from the cairn were taken and used in the construction of Mount Pelier lodge. Shortly after completion, a storm blew the roof off. Local superstition attributed this incident to the work of the Devil, a punishment for interfering with the cairn. Since this time, Montpelier Hill has become associated with numerousparanormal events.
This reputation was further enhanced when members of the Irish Hell Fire Club, which was active in the years 1735 to 1741, began using Mount Pelier lodge as a meeting place. Numerous lurid stories of wild behaviour and debauchery as well asoccult practices and demonic manifestations have become part of the local folklore. The original name of the lodge has been displaced and the building is generally known as the Hell Fire Club. When the lodge was damaged by fire, the members of the Hell Fire Club relocated down the hill to the nearby Stewards House for a brief period. This building also has a reputation for being haunted, most notably by a massive black cat.
Adjacent to the Stewards House is the remains of Killakee Estate. A large Victorian house was built here in the early nineteenth century by Luke White. White's son, Samuel, oversaw the development of extensive formal gardens on the estate, including the construction of several glasshouses by Richard Turner. The estate passed to the Massy family through inheritance in 1880 and John Thomas Massy, the 6th Baron made extensive use of the house and ground to host shooting parties and society gatherings. The fortunes of the Massy family declined in the early twentieth century and Hamon Massy, the 8th Baron, was evicted from Killakee House in 1924. He became known as the “Penniless Peer”. Following the eviction, Killakee House was demolished and the gardens fell into ruin.
Today Montpelier Hill and much of the surrounding lands, including Killakee Estate (now called Lord Massy's Estate) are owned by the State forestry company Coillte and are open to the public.




[edit]The Hell Fire Club

The building now known as the Hell Fire Club was built around 1725 as a hunting lodge by William Conolly, the Speaker of the Irish House of Commons.[7] It was named Mount Pelier by Conolly but over the years has also been known as “The Haunted House”,[8] “The Shooting Lodge”,[8] “The Kennel”,[9] and “Conolly's Folly”,[9]. It was one of several exclusive establishments using the name Hellfire Clubthat existed in Britain and Ireland in the 18th century.

Fisheye image of one of the reception rooms on the upper floor
While the building has a rough appearance today, the architecture is of a Palladian design. The upper floor consists of a hall and two reception rooms. On the eastern side, there was a third, timber-floored, level where the sleeping quarters were located.[10] On the ground floor is a kitchen, servants' quarters and stairs to the upper floors. The entrance, which is on the upper floor, was reached by a long flight of stairs which is now missing.[11] At each side of the building is a room with a lean-to roof which may have been used to stable horses.[12] A stone mounting block to assist people onto their horses can be seen on the eastern side.[10]To the front there was a semi-circular courtyard, enclosed by a low stone wall and entered by a gate.[13] The house faces to the north, looking over Dublin and the plains of Meath andKildare,[14] including Conolly's primary residence at Castletown House in Celbridge.[15] The grounds around the lodge consisted of a 1,000-acre (4.0 km2; 1.6 sq mi) deer park.[11] The identity of the architect is unknown: the author Michael Fewer has suggested it may have been Edward Lovett Pearce (1699-1733) who was employed by Conolly to carry out works at Castletown in 1724.[16]
There was a prehistoric burial site at the summit of Montpelier Hill and stones from it were used in the construction of the lodge.[8] A nearby standing stone was also used for the lintel over the fireplace.[17] Shortly after its completion, a great storm blew the original slateroof off. Local superstition held that this was the work of the Devil, an act of revenge for disturbing the ancient cairn.[18] Conolly had the roof replaced with an arched stone roof constructed in a similar fashion to that of a bridge.[13] This roof has remained intact to the present day, even though the building has been abandoned for over two centuries and despite the roof being set alight with tar barrels during the visit of Queen Victoria to Ireland in 1849.[18][19]

Fisheye image of the entrance hall and stairs on the upper floor
There is little evidence that the lodge was put to much use. Conolly himself died in 1729. The only known record of its occupation is an announcement of the death at Mount Pelier of a Mr Charles Cobbe, son of the Archbishop of Dublin, in July 1751.[15] This is erroneous, however. In fact, Cobbe died of a fever in Montpellier, France, early in 1751.[20]
However, it was the period in the years following Conolly's death that Mount Pelier's association with the Hell Fire Club began. The Irish Hell Fire Club was founded around 1737 by Richard Parsons, 1st Earl of Rosse, and James Worsdale.[21] Lord Rosse was probably the president of the club.[22] Evidence of the identities of other members comes from a painting by Worsdale entitled The Hell Fire Club, Dublin, now held by the National Gallery of Ireland, which shows five members of the club seated around a table.[23] The five men are Henry, 4th Baron Barry of Santry (who was tried and convicted for murder in 1739);[24] Simon Luttrell, Lord IrnhamColonel Henry Ponsonby; Colonel Richard St George and Colonel Clements.[23] Most of their meetings occurred in Dublin city centre at the Eagle Tavern on Cork Hill, near Dublin Castle.[25] Accounts of the club's meetings claim that members drank “scaltheen”, a mixture of whiskey and hot butter, and that they left a chair vacant at each gathering for the Devil.[26] The club's mascot was a black cat.[26]

Fisheye image of the kitchen on the lower floor
Mount Pelier was let to the club by the Conolly family.[27] Coincidentally, William Conolly had purchased Mountpelier Hill from Philip, Duke of Wharton, founder of the first Hell Fire Club in 1719.[28] It is not clear to what extent, if any, the Hell Fire Club made use of the building. The author Michael Fewer has suggested that the remoteness of Mount Pelier’s location is why there are almost no verifiable accounts of the activities that went on there.[29]However, numerous (and very doubtful) stories surrounding the building have become part of local folklore, some of which have spread to a wider audience through publication in the nineteenth century in books such as Robert ChambersBook of Days (1864) and in The Gentleman's Magazine (1731-1922).[26]
One of the best known of these tells of a stranger who arrived at the club on a stormy night. Invited in, he joined the members in a card game. One player dropped his card on the floor and when he bent under the table to retrieve it noticed that the stranger had a cloven hoof. At this point the visitor disappeared in a ball of flame. This is a very similar story to one associated with Loftus HallCounty Wexford.[30] The Loftus family owned a hunting lodge – known as Dolly Mount – which was also to be found on Montpelier Hill.[31]

Fisheye image of the stairs from the kitchen and servants quarters to the upper floor
Another story tells of a priest who came to the house one night and found the members engaged in the sacrifice of a black cat. The priest grabbed the cat and uttered an exorcismupon which a demon was released from the corpse of the cat.[32]
One tale centres on club member Simon Luttrell, Lord Irnham, later Earl of Carhampton, one time Sheriff of Dublin.[32] Luttrell is believed to have been the subject of The Diaboliad, a 1777 poem dedicated to “the worst man in England”.[33] According to the story, Luttrell made a pact with the Devil to give up his soul within seven years in return for settling his debts but, when the Devil came to Mount Pelier lodge to claim his prize, Luttrell distracted the Devil and fled.[33]
Other tales recount numerous drinking sessions and black masses at which animal sacrifices, and on one occasion the sacrifice of a dwarf, took place.[32]
At some point during this period, the building was damaged by fire. There are several stories connected with this incident. One holds that the club set fire to the building when William Conolly's son refused to renew the lease on the lodge.[27] An alternative story claims the club members did it in order to give the building a hellish appearance.[34] Another story recounts that, following a black mass, a footman spilled a drink on “Burn-Chapel” Whaley’s coat. Whaley retaliated by pouring brandy over the man and setting him alight. The fire spread around the building and killed many members.[35] Following the fire, the club relocated further down the hill to Killakee Stewards House.[36] However, the club's activities declined after this incident.[37]

The Hell Fire Club, just before dark
The Irish Hell Fire Club was revived in 1771 and was active for a further thirty years.[38] Its most notorious member was Thomas “Buck” Whaley, son of Richard Chappell Whaley.[38]This new incarnation was known as “The Holy Fathers”.[38] Meetings once again took place at Mount Pelier lodge and, according to one story, the members kidnapped, murdered and ate a farmer's daughter.[37] Whaley eventually repented and, when he died in 1800, the Irish Hell Fire Club passed away with him.[37]
The antiquarian Austin Cooper visited the house in 1779 and found it in a state of disrepair.[39] Joseph Holt, a general of the Society of the United Irishmen recorded in his memoirs that he spent a night in the ruin of Mount Pelier while on the run following the 1798 Rebellion.[4] Holt wrote of his experience, “I lay down in the arched room of that remarkable building. I felt confident of the protection of the Almighty that the name of enchantment and the idle stories that were told of the place had but a slight hold of my mind.”[29] The Conollys sold the lands to Luke White in 1800.[40] They passed through inheritance to theMassy family of Duntrileage, County Limerick.[41] When the Massy family became bankrupt, the lands were acquired by the State.[41]Today, the building is maintained by Coillte, who manage the forestry plantations on Montpelier's slopes, who have installed concrete stairs and iron safety rails across the upper windows.[30]

[edit]Prehistoric monuments

The remains of the cairn on Montpelier
The remains of the prehistoric monument that originally stood at the summit can be seen to the rear of the Hell Fire Club building. Austin Cooper, on his visit in 1779, described it thus: “behind the house are still the remains of the cairn, the limits of which were composed of large stones set edgeways which made a sort of wall or boundary about 18 inches (46 centimetres) high and withinside these were the small stones heaped up. It is 34 yards (31 metres) diameter or 102 yards (93 metres) in circumference. In the very centre is a large stone 9 feet (2.7 metres) long and 6 feet (1.8 metres) broad and about 3 feet (0.91 metres) thick not raised upon large stones but lying low with the stones cleared away from about it. There are several other large stones lying upon the heap.”[42] It appears from this description that the central chamber of the monument – which was a passage grave[17] – survived intact even after Mount Pelier was constructed.[39] The historian Peter J. O'Keefe has suggested that many of the stones were taken away and used in the construction of the Military Road at the start of the nineteenth century.[10] Today, all that remains is a circular mound 15 metres (49 feet) in diameter and up to 2 metres (6.6 feet) high with a dip at the centre where the chamber was located.[17] The four large stones at the edge are all that survive of the kerbstones that formed the boundary of the monument.[43] In close proximity is a second mound, 1 metre (3.3 feet) high, on which an Ordnance Survey trig pillar stands.[17] Close to the monument is a fallen standing stone, a pointed rock 1 metre (3.3 feet) high.[44]

[edit]The Stewards House

The Stewards House
Further down the hill, along the Military Road, is a two story house, known as The Stewards House or as Killakee House (not to be confused with the now-demolished Killakee House that served as the residence of the Massy family who owned the adjacent Killakee Estate). It was built around 1765 by the Conolly family as a hunting lodge.[45] Over the years, it has served as a dower house and as a residence for the agent who managed the Killakee Estate.[46] To the rear is a belfry; this was once a common feature of large farmhouses and was used to call the workers for meals.[46] The Hell Fire Club held meetings here for a time following the fire that damaged Mount Pelier lodge.[36] The house has a reputation for being haunted, particularly by a large black cat.[47] Stories regarding the origin of this spectre either connect it with the account of the priest who exorcised a cat at the Hell Fire Club[48]or with a cat that was doused in whiskey and set alight by members of the Hell Fire Club before escaping across the mountains with its fur aflame.[49]
The best documented account of these hauntings occurred between 1968 and 1970. The Evening Herald and Evening Pressnewspapers carried a number of reports regarding a Mrs Margaret O'Brien and her husband Nicholas, a retired Garda superintendent, who were converting the house into an arts centre.[32] The redevelopment had been a troubled affair with tradesmen employed on the work leaving complaining of ghosts.[50] One night, a friend of the O'Brien's, artist Tom McAssey, and two workmen were confronted by a spectral figure and a black cat with glowing red eyes.[51] McAssey painted a portrait of the cat which hung in the house for several years after.[51] Although locals were sceptical of the reports,[51] further apparitions were reported, most notably of an Indian gentleman and of two nuns called Blessed Margaret and Holy Mary who had taken part in black masses on Mountpelier Hill.[48] There were also reports of ringing bells and poltergeist activity.[51] In 1970 an RTÉ television crew recorded a documentary at the house.[52] In the documentary a clairvoyant called Sheila St. Clair communicated with the spirits of the house through automatic writing.[53] In 1971, a plumber working in the house discovered a grave with a skeleton of a small figure, most likely that of a child or, perhaps, the body of the dwarf alleged to have been sacrificed by the members of the Hell Fire Club.[51] The house operated as a restaurant in the 1990s before closing in 2001; it is now a private residence.[47]

[edit]Killakee (Lord Massy's) Estate

On the other side of the Military Road to Hell Fire Wood and the Stewards House is the remains of Killakee Estate (IrishCoill an Chaoich, meaning "Blind Man's Wood"),[54] now known as Lord Massy's Estate.[55] These lands were first granted to Walter de Ridleford after the Norman invasion and later given to Sir Thomas Luttrell, an ancestor of Hell Fire Club member Simon Luttrell, by Henry VIII.[41] The Luttrell family held onto the estate until the seventeenth century when it was relinquished to Dudley Loftus and then passed to William Conolly.[41] In 1800, the Conolly family sold the estate to Luke White.[40]

The ruined gardens of Killakee Estate
The White family built Killakee House on the estate in the early nineteenth century.[56] This was a two storey, thirty-six roomed stucco-faced house.[57] It had a Tuscan-columnedentrance and large three-windowed bows on the back and sides.[56] Luke White's second son, Colonel Samuel White, inherited the estate on his father's death in 1824 and invested considerable effort in developing its gardens.[58] In 1838, he engaged the services of Sir Ninian Niven, former director of the Botanic Gardens in Dublin.[59] Niven laid out two Victorian formal gardens of gravel walks, terraces and exotic trees decorated with statues of Greek and Roman gods.[59] Adjacent to the house was a terraced rose garden with a statue of Neptune.[59] A second walled garden in a vale in the woods below the house contained more fountains and a range of glasshouses designed by Richard Turner.[58] William Robinson, writing in The Gardener's Chronicle and Agricultural Gazette on 10 December 1864, said of the gardens, “I know of no better example of the advantage of extensively planting and draining a barren and elevated district than is afforded by this demesne of 500 acres.”[60]
When Samuel White's widow, Anne, died in 1880, she bequeathed the estate to her late husband's nephew, John Thomas, 6th Baron Massy.[61] The Massys were a Protestant Ascendancy family who had come to Ireland in 1641 and owned extensive lands in CountiesLimerickLeitrim and Tipperary.[62] Massy used Killakee House to entertain guests while shooting game on nearby Cruagh and Glendoo mountains.[63] He also used the house to host parties during major events on the Dublin social calendar such as the Dublin Horse Show, the Punchestown Races and the Dublin Castle Season.[64] During these events long lines of guests' carriages could be seen stretched along the road leading to the house.[65] However, as a result of declining rental income and poor investment decisions, John Thomas Massy was in considerable debt when he died in 1915.[63] By the time John Massy's grandson, Hugh Hamon Charles, 8th Baron Massy, inherited the estate, the family's finances were in an irreversible decline and in 1924 he was declared bankrupt and evicted from Killakee House.[66] The Massys initially moved into the Stewards House before taking up residence in Beehive Cottage, the estate's gate lodge, by agreement with the bank.[67] Hamon Massy, unable to find a job on account of his alcoholism became dependent on his wife, Margaret, whose modest salary from a job with the Irish Hospitals' Sweepstake was the family's only income.[68]In the years up to his death in 1958, Hamon Massy, who became known as the “Penniless Peer”, could be seen collecting firewood in the woods of his former family estate.[69]

Killakee Wedge Tomb
Following the eviction, Killakee House was briefly used as an operations base by the Detective Unit of the Garda Síochána in 1931 while they hunted IRA subversives who were hiding explosives at Killakee.[70] When the bank was unable to find a buyer for the estate, it was acquired by a builder who stripped the house and then demolished it in 1941.[63] The lands were eventually acquired by the State and opened to the public.[71] In the late 1930s, the Director of Forestry, a German called Otto Reinard, laid out the area as an unban forest.[6] The trees have reclaimed most of the land once occupied by the formal gardens: all that remains is the brickwork at the rear of the Turner glasshouses and the system of irrigation canals and ponds for the exotic plants contained within.[72]
In 1978, the archaeologist and historian Patrick Healy discovered the remains of a prehistoric wedge tomb in the woods.[73] All the survives is the skeletal outline of the main chamber and the outer double walls.[74] Most of the stones were removed to build the low stone wall that runs across the front of the tomb.[75]

[edit]Carthy’s Castle

Carthy's Castle
On the northern slopes is another ruined building, known as Carthy’s or McCarthy’s Castle.[76] This is all that remains of Dolly Mount – also known as the “Long House” and “Mount Pelier House” – a large hunting residence built by Henry LoftusEarl of Ely towards the end of the eighteenth century.[31] The building was originally two stories high with bow windows each side of the hall door, above which was the Ely coat of arms.[77] At each side of the house was an arched gate from which extended a range of ancillary buildings, terminating in a three-storied tower with an embattled top and pointed windows.[78] The interiors were noted for their marble chimney pieces and stuccoed ceilings.[78] The earl’s first wife, Frances Monroe, was the aunt of Dolores “Dolly” Monroe who was a celebrated beauty and in whose honour the house was named Dolly Mount.[79] The Ely’s subsequently abandoned the residence and the building soon fell into ruin, mainly at the hands of a tenant called Jack Kelly who wrecked the house in order to ensure his tenancy would not be disturbed.[80] All, except for the tower at the western end, which is now known as Carthy’s Castle, was demolished in 1950.[81]

[edit]Orlagh House

St Colmcille's Well
In the land adjacent to Carthy’s Castle is Orlagh House which has been owned by theAugustinian Order since the mid-nineteenth century and is a retreat and conference centre run by the friars.[82] It was built in 1790 by Mr Lundy Foot, a wealthy snuff merchant, who named the house Footmount.[82] He was also a magistrate and was instrumental in condemning three members of the Kearney family to death for the murder of John Kinlan, the gamekeeper at Friarstown, near Bohernabreena, in 1816.[83] Foot was subsequently murdered in 1835, an act that was attributed to relatives of the Kearneys.[84] In fact, Foot was killed by James Murphy, the son of an evicted tenant farmer whose land Foot had bought following the eviction.[85]
In a field opposite Orlagh House is a holy well associated with Saint Colmcille. A statue of the saint, designed by Joseph Tierney, was erected at the site in 1917.[86] Pilgrims either drink the water or apply it to sore ears.[87]

[edit]Access and recreation

Montpelier Hill is accessed from the Hell Fire Wood car park along the R115 road between Rathfarnham and Glencullen.[6] The woods offer around 4.5 kilometres (2.8 miles) of forest roads and tracks as well as a permanent orienteering course.[6] Lord Massy's Estate is also accessed from the R115, close to the Hell Fire Wood car park.[55] The woods offer a nature trail and a permanent orienteering course.[55] Lord Massy's Estate and Montpelier Hill are also traversed by the Dublin Mountains Way hiking trail that runs betweenShankill and Tallaght.[1]

[edit]See also

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  1. a b c d Ordnance Survey Ireland.Discovery Series No. 50 (Map).
  2. ^ "Hell Fire Club"Irish Placenames DatabaseDepartment of Community, Equality and Gaeltacht Affairs. Retrieved 2010-08-01.
  3. ^ Joyce, p. 125.
  4. a b Healy, p. 47.
  5. ^ Healy, p. 36.
  6. a b c d "Hell Fire Club"Coillte Outdoors. Retrieved 2010-08-01.
  7. ^ Handcock, p. 86-87.
  8. a b c Joyce, p. 123.
  9. a b Handcock, p. 86.
  10. a b c Fewer, p. 70.
  11. a b Handcock, p. 87.
  12. ^ Healy, p. 44.
  13. a b Joyce, p. 124.
  14. ^ Joyce, p. 125.
  15. a b Ball, p. 40.
  16. ^ Fewer, Michael (May/June 2010). "Gems of Architecture: The Hellfire Club, Co. Dublin". History Ireland(Dublin: History Publications Ltd.) 18(3): 29. ISSN 0791-8224.
  17. a b c d Fourwinds, p. 131.
  18. a b Healy, p. 45.
  19. ^ Handcock, p. 88.
  20. ^ Ryan, p. 158.
  21. ^ Ryan, p. 29.
  22. ^ Ryan, p. 22.
  23. a b Ryan, pp. 30-34.
  24. ^ Ryan, pp. 53-57.
  25. ^ Ryan, pp. 34-35.
  26. a b c Lord, p. 63.
  27. a b Ashe, p. 63.
  28. ^ Lord, p. 62.
  29. a b Fewer, p. 72.
  30. a b Walsh, p. 19.
  31. a b Joyce, p. 121-122.
  32. a b c d Walsh, p. 20.
  33. a b Lord, p. 65.
  34. ^ Walsh, Dave (1998-10-30). "The Irish Hellfire Club: No Smoke Withour Fire" Retrieved 2010-08-12.
  35. ^ O'Farrell, p. 85-86.
  36. a b Ashe, p. 63-64.
  37. a b c Ashe, p. 208.
  38. a b c Ashe, p. 207.
  39. a b Healy, p. 46.
  40. a b Tracy, p. 28
  41. a b c d Healy, p. 63.
  42. ^ Fewer, p. 69.
  43. ^ Fourwinds, p. 24.
  44. ^ Fourwinds, p. 132.
  45. ^ Tracy, p. 81.
  46. a b Fewer, p. 68.
  47. a b Walsh, p. 21.
  48. a b Ashe, p. 64.
  49. ^ O' Farrell, p. 85.
  50. ^ O'Farrell, p. 87.
  51. a b c d e Walsh, p. 22.
  52. ^ O' Farrell, p. 84.
  53. ^ O'Farrell, p.88.
  54. ^ "Killakee"Irish Placenames DatabaseDepartment of Community, Equality and Gaeltacht Affairs. Retrieved 2010-08-14.
  55. a b c "Massy's Estate"Coillte Outdoors. Retrieved 2010-08-12.
  56. a b Fewer, p.79.
  57. ^ Tracy, p. 29.
  58. a b Tracy, p. 31.
  59. a b c Fewer, p.80.
  60. ^ Tracy, p. 34.
  61. ^ Tracy, p. 46.
  62. ^ Tracy, passim.
  63. a b c Fewer, p. 83.
  64. ^ Tracy, p. 51.
  65. ^ Tracy, p. 52.
  66. ^ Tracy, p. 64.
  67. ^ Tracy, p. 64-65.
  68. ^ Tracy, p. 65.
  69. ^ Tracy, p. 68.
  70. ^ Tracy, p. 80.
  71. ^ Fewer, p. 85.
  72. ^ Fewer, p. 84.
  73. ^ Fourwinds, p. 24.
  74. ^ Fourwinds, p. 114.
  75. ^ Healy, p. 65.
  76. ^ Healy, p. 53.
  77. ^ Handcock, p. 90.
  78. a b Joyce, p, 121
  79. ^ Handcock, p. 89.
  80. ^ Handcock, p. 91.
  81. ^ Healy, p. 43.
  82. a b Healy, p. 42.
  83. ^ Hopkins, p. 67.
  84. ^ Joyce, p. 122.
  85. ^ Hopkins, p. 68.
  86. ^ Healy, p. 40.
  87. ^ Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council, p. 178.


[edit]External links


[edit]The Hell Fire Club


Copyright of Jim Cairns Kilkenny Ireland