Looked out the window this morning to a beautiful blue sky and sunshine. From our hotel we were able to walk to Trim Castle. Took just a few minutes as the castle is across the road from the hotel. We wanted to be there when it opened so we could be on the first tour. Our Heritage Pass allowed us entrance and a tour. We had about a half hour wait so took the time to explore various buildings that are inside the compound. Trim Castle was founded in the 12th Century by Hugh de Lacy, a Norman. It is one of the largest medieval castles inEurope and is quite impressive. It was used in Braveheart in 1995 as a backdrop.
When you have learned all you can from the fabulous tour it’s time to venture to the River Walk that takes you to a number (about 5) additional historic sites. It’s a lovely stroll. As you cross the wooden bridge you can look left and see the stone bridge from the 13th Century. It is still being used today. The view down the river is quite nice.
Once on the other side of the river you’ll notice a tall stone tower. This is known as the Yellow Steeple. It dates from the 14th Century. It was the Bell Tower of the Abbey of St. Mary’s and stands about 131 feet tall. During the time of the Battle of the Boyne it was used as target practice by the occupying forces.
As you continue your walk along the river you’ll have some wonderful opportunities for photos of Trim Castle. In this photo you get a much better idea of the extent of the castle and it’s place along the Boyne River.
As you continue walking you come to a stone gate that is on either side of the path. It is called the Sheep Gate. the gate and the expanse of wall running from it were once part of the outer defensive walls of Trim.
Continue your walk along the river and you will see the ruins of the Cathedral of Saints Peter and Paul coming closer as you walk. There is still some lovely stonework in the remains of this once massive stone edifice. You’ll also be able to commiserate with the cattle and sheep that graze in the cathedral grounds.
One of the most interesting features of the Cathedral ruins is the tomb of the Jealous Man and Woman. The tomb is that of Sir Lucas Dillon and his wife, Lady Jayne Bathe and dates to the 1590’s. There is a sword between them and they are not touching. This apparently signifies Sir Dillons’s displeasure with his wife for having an affair. The tomb also presents a local cure for warts. Rub your wart with a pin and leave the pin on top of the tomb. As the pin rusts, the wart falls away. We saw a number of pins on the surface of the tomb so this still seems to be a sought after cure.
As we were puzzling over the tomb we were befriended by a charming local woman who was taking her afternoon walk. She told us a lot about the ruin, the legends and about living in Trim.
As we continued our walk we crossed back over the river and on our left saw the Priory Hospital of St. John the Baptist. Another great ruin to explore. The Priory was dissolved in 1541 during the Reformation but there is still quite a lot to see. The remains of a choir nave and a tower are there for you to explore although you can’t climb the tower.
The River Walk and all the ruins you discover as you walk are free and used extensively by the locals. It’s a great way to spend an afternoon as you learn about all the history Trim offers.
At the end of the day we made our way back to the hotel as the sun was setting. More gorgeous views of the river and the ruins as we made our way back to the hotel pub.