Sunday, October 31, 2010

And The Winner Is?

Yes, there can be only one winner in the Wicklow Daily Photo Halloween shop display competition - did you not know that there was a competition?  Well, of course there was a competition! 

Now those with a keen eye will remember that, yesterday, we showed a picture of Stan & Tony's shop front, but the shop was closed so we couldn't really see what they had to offer apart from a small display in the window.  But today, they pulled out all the stops and fairly blew their rivals away with this incredible display and so now, all that remains is for me to declare that the winner is Stan & Tony's Discount Store.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

More Halloween-dows

 Continuing our little stroll around Wicklow Town while snapping the Halloween themed shop windows, we are struck by the enthusiasm and imagination of all those taking part.  

Our main picture above shows a detail from Earl's Newsagents brilliant display.

Left, is Stan & Tony's where I suspect a lot of kids will get their Trick-or-Treat costumes.

And let's not forget a worthy cause:

Now, below, you probably won't get spooked if you enter here, more like fleeced!

Friday, October 29, 2010

The Halloween-dows

It's just a couple of days to Halloween and we're downtown in Wicklow Town where most of the local shops have made a big effort with their Halloween displays and so today we take a look at the first of a random selection.

On the left is part of an elaborate dislplay in Earls Newsagents.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

The Ayes To The Right

Pictured on the river wall, in Wicklow Town, with the Stone Bridge in the background, this gull appears to be leaning towards the left and, therefore, not quite in agreement with his fellows.  So he's one of the Noes then!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Deserted Beaches Of The Heart

What is it about Wicklow's deserted beaches? Even on last Sunday, which was a beautiful warm sunny day, we checked out four different beaches, and with the exception of Brittas Bay, all were deserted.  This is Maghermore Beach near Blainroe, Co Wicklow, probably my favourite, which, you will remember, we visited a short while back, and today there's not a surfer in site!  At least, this fellow on the left racing through the surf, knows how to enjoy himself.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

The Lonesome Fisherman

Now, Wicklow's beaches are popular for beach fishing or is it beachcasting or maybe even surfcasting?  I don't know , I don't fish but just observe. But you're never going to be tripping over each other pursuing whatever your beach sport is, in Wicklow. So today, we find ourselves, after a rough and muddy trek, on the beach which runs alongside the European Club, that famous stretch of golf links just south of Brittas Bay. Here we happen upon the lonesome fisherman, plying his trade and oblivious to all except your interpid blogger!

Monday, October 25, 2010

A Wicklow Sunrise

The start of what turned out to be a beautiful Sunday here in Wicklow, or did these cannon just hit the target?

Sunday, October 24, 2010

The Cliff Walk

This inviting seat along the Cliff Walk in Devil's Glen wood is inscribed with a verse of old Irish poetry translated by the Nobel Prize winning poet, Seamus Heaney.  A nice spot to rest and contemplate the poignant decay of autumn while awaiting the first signs of approaching winter.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Back In The Wood

Or, more precisely, back in Devil's Glen Wood, outside Ashford, Co Wicklow to take a look at another of the artists featured in the Sculpture In Woodland project formed in 1994 with the aim of creating a greater awareness of wood as an artistic and functional medium - this was explained in more detail in this earlier post.

Today it's the turn of Portugese sculptor Alberto Carneiro and his featured work in Douglas fir - Woodland Mandala.

Friday, October 22, 2010

The Rickety Rail


 Nice fishing to be enjoyed in the cove next to the Greystones Harbour construction site below, which we discussed here in an earlier post, but, while the steps seem sturdy enough, I hope these gentlemen don't have to rely on the rickety rail!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Beach Dogs

Today, it's Brittas Bay Beach, Co Wicklow and, as usual, plenty of dogs are exercising their owners! Now, you might think that a dog on a beach should be on a leash, but the bye-laws state that "it should be on a leash or under adequate control."  So there!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Shadow Play

A shadowy rural scene observed while traversing the Wicklow mountains between Rathdangan and Aughrim.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Sunday Stroll

Today, it's a beach with a difference! This is South Beach, Arklow, Co Wicklow and it's a beautiful October Sunday morning so, time for a pleasant stroll along the beach.  Nice backdrop - that's CRH plc's quarry at the famous Arklow Rock landmark!

And this is the opposite view!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Maghermore Beach

Another day, another beach and today it's Maghermore Beach which is about six miles along the coast road south of Wicklow Town, just past Blainroe Golf Club.  You have to park on the road and walk for 7 minutes or so along a rough track and take the steps down to what is a beautiful sandy beach with crystal clear and shallow water sheltered by steep cliffs.  A family-friendly beach with safe swimming.

Maghermore is popular with surfers and offers some of the best surfing along the East Coast, which isn't saying a lot because the real surfing is on the West Coast!  It's probably best during the winter months, in a big wind!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Travelahawk Beach

This Wicklow Town Heritage Trail plaque directs us to Travelahawk Beach and explains the legend of how the Gaelic name for Wicklow, Cill Mhantain, may have had it's origins. Click on the picture above for a larger view.

Anyway, we're down on the beach, which, incidentally, provides us with a great view of the Black Castle ruins covered in an earlier post, and it's all of 100 metres long!  But so what?  It's quiet, tranquil and this lady seems to enjoy it and is obviously a regular visitor.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Umha Aois

Gaelic for Bronze Age, Umha Aois is an "ongoing experimental project organised on a volunteer basis by a committee formed of artists & archaeologists. Through research and experimentation we are attempting to rediscover our Bronze Age ancestors' casting methods, and in the process empower the artists involved with unique approaches to working in bronze".  So states their website as we observe members of the group delivering a fascinating demonstration of Bronze Casting here at the Tradional Skills Day in Wicklow's Historic Gaol.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Traditional Skills

Visited the Wicklow Traditional Skills Day held in the courtyard of Wicklow's Historic Gaol last weekend.  There were talks and demonstrations of traditional building, rural and household skills - knitting, felting and crocheting, weaving, pottery, joinery construction, use of lime, blacksmithing, wood turning, thatching and even Bronze Age casting!

The event was co-ordinated by the Heritage Office of Wicklow County Council, with support from The Heritage Council.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Cool, Man

Ambling across the new bridge at The Murrough, Co Wicklow, while enjoying the sparkling October weather, this Morgan is way too cool, man!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Nanny's Bed

A big protest march, with some 3,000 people taking part, was held in Wicklow Town last Saturday, against the possible closure threat to Wicklow District Hospital, which cares for 20 long-stay patients.  The hospital may be downgraded, or closed, in the coming months after an audit found problems with the building.  Families whose relatives are in the hospital say there were no problems with the structure of the building and praised the care given to those resident at the unit.  A decision will be made next month by the HSE (Health Service Executive) which is the body responsible for the provision of healthcare, providing health and personal social services for everyone living in Ireland, with public funds.

Click here for a poignant story relating to the hospital's longest resident, Mary Staunton.
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