The medieval walls of Athenry are easily the best preserved example of a Norman town wall, with two thirds of the 14th century walls still intact.
That tangible connection to the past and every aspect of the medieval life and culture that comes with it will be on display this Sunday, August 18 at the Athenry Walled Towns Day 2019 as part of Heritage Week.
The event includes this year’s Heritage Week theme of Past Times, Pastimes and the programme includes a range of activities for all ages to enjoy.
The day opens at 1pm in Athenry Park and will continue until 5pm with every attraction you could need. There will be incredible food and drink on offer, arts & crafts, exhibitions bringing the past to life, and men beating the hell out of each other in medieval armour.
If proof was ever needed that Galway was always a foodie spot, then the displays of traditional bread & butter making by Culinary Historian Anna O’Donnell, and Authentic Medieval Food to tickle the tastebuds courtesy of Dinah Thorneycroft should do the trick.
But they made more than just food in ye olden times, and if you want to see some medieval craft on display then catch the stall on copper crafting with Mark Wilson; carding, spinning, and weaving by hand with Sandra King of the Irish Fibre Crafters or Medieval Bead Making with Dr Mags Mannion.
For the more martially inclined, Scotia Armoury & Clink will be displaying replicas of historical items from everyday camp life, and the Irish School of Historical Combat will have an exhibit on the making and care of armour, and the sharpening and care of swords.
If that puts you in the mind to set off down the knightly path yourself, then get a look at what that entails with the main event, a tournament of full contact medieval combat, where Medieval Combat Ireland will battle it out while decked out in full armour.
Any event the celebrates local history should be a reminder to take pride in our town as it is now, and Athenry Tidy Towns will be there to showcase their work in the community and highlight the incredible local biodiversity.
The Athenry Heritage Centre will host the children’s Custard Pie Theatre shows at 2:00pm & 3:30pm and Dr. Jeff Dann will provide historical tours of the heritage centre and discover your inner Robin Hood with Have A Go Archery.
All of this and more can be experienced in an incredible day for the whole family this Sunday at Athenry Walled Towns Day.
The Walled Towns Day is co-hosted by the Heritage Centre and Galway County Council and is supported by the Irish Walled Towns Network. Further information can be found at www.athenryheritagecentre.com and www.galwaycommunityheritage.org.