Attractions

Mallow Golf Club

Instituted 1892, affiliated 1898. Golf has been played at Mallow as far back as 1892. The Golfing Annual 1895-96 gives its foundation date as 1892 and records “The course of eighteen-holes, is about half a mile from the town, and the hazards are quarries, brooks, the Fermoy Railway, etc. Play takes place all year round. It gives the President as R. E. Longfield, the Captain as F. J. F. Smith and Hon. Secretary as R. H. Spratt, Bank of Ireland.

It would appear that between 1896 and 1897 the landlord revised the lease and the course was reduced to a nine-hole and only playable in winter. There were 70 members and the annual subscription was £1 for men and twelve shillings for ladies. The club continued until 1924 when it had plans to move to another location and become an eighteen-hole course. It seems this plan never happened and the club became defunct. It was not until 1947 that the new club was revived. With a world class 18 hole course and excellent facilities , mallow golf course is a great club to be member off or just come along and have a game.


Ballyhass Lakes

Ballyhass Lakes is located near Mallow, County Cork. It is Ireland's best known still spring water trout fishery, with 11 four star holiday homes and an activity centre for groups, schools and corporate team building.

The fishery has two separate lakes. The main lake is 12 acres of spring water some 35 feet deep and is reserved for fly fishing only. It can be fished by boat or from prepared fishing stands on the bank. On lower lake, worm spinning and bubble and fly methods are permitted and extensive safe fishing stands surround the lake. The fishing lodge has an extensive tackle shop for fly and bait, and rod hire. The fishery is open 09.00 to dusk 364 day per year. Tuition on fly fishing is available.

Mallow Castle

The old Mallow Castle stands at the centre of the town on the banks of the Blackwater. Behind it stands the new castle, a fine baronial building which is privately owned and well maintained. In the grounds is a herd of white fallow deer, all of which are descended from two bucks presented to a previous owner by Queen Elizabeth I.

Certain traditions describe the building of the original castle to King John or at least to his time. It seems certain that there was a very early Norman structure on the site, of what type would be impossible to say, but probably attributable to the Norman De Rupe or Roches who had displaced the native O'Keeffes from the district and driven them further west. A date is given for this early construction as 1185 A.D. A new castle was built on the site in 1282 by the Desmond Fitzgeralds. Thomas Fitzmaurice, Baron of the Geraldines, exchanged a district in Connaught called Kerrylocknaun for "the Manor Moyale, Co. Cork, worth 70 marks", which apparently was the dower of Ellen, wife of Henry De Rupe, or Roche the Younger. No doubt its proximity to an important ford on the Blackwater, now covered by a bridge, influenced the exchange.

In 1286 Thomas got a grant to aid him in enclosing and keeping secure "his Vills of Tralee and Mallow". This Thomas died in 1298, but the property stayed secure in Geraldine hands until the Earl's uprising near the end of the 16th century at which time it belonged to Sir John of Desmond, brother of the Earl. They were the sons of James Fitzjohn. Sir John married Ellen, daughter of the 11th Earl of Muskerry, but the couple was childless. The pitiful remnant of what was once a powerful castle is south of the later Jacobean fortified house. It is merely a wall with a battered window and return angle walls - heavily battered at its base. The moat continues to the north of the gate under the mansion, which was obviously built over the site of the old castle. There are traces of what would have been curtain walls and there was a well between this wall and the castle.

In its days of grandeur the castle contained three courtyards, one of them being a forecourt or barbican, which had a thatch covered timber roof. During the Desmond uprising it fared badly being referred to in official documents as 'the ruinous house of Mallow'. Its owner, Sir John, described as a brave soldier, was killed while in captivity and his dismembered body hung from the gates of Cork. That was in 1581 and even before the rebellion was over the property was being parcelled out. In 1584, from a description of that time, the manor lands stretched north for about three miles, almost to Caherduggan, and south to the O'Callaghan castle of Dromore while it extended west, also towards O'Callaghan land, for about a mile and a half, and east for perhaps half a mile.

The Norrey brothers came from Rycote in Oxfordshire, being two of the six sons of Lord Norreys of that place. Thomas's daughter, Elizabeth, was Godchild of Queen Elizabeth, after whom she was named. Up to a number of years ago the christening robe which she received as a present from Queen Elizabeth could be seen at the Castle. While still a minor, in 1607, she was married to Sir John Jephson, an army officer, and it is their descendants who, until recently, owned and lived in the castle property. They had four sons and four daughters. In 1615, on coming of age, she was presented, by a patent of James the First, with "The Castle and Town of Mallow and Short Castle, alias Castle Garr".

In 1636 Boyle, who by that time owned a considerable part of the rest of Munster, offered £15,000 for Mallow, but for once he was refused. During the Confederate War the family declared for the Parliament and Short Castle was taken by the Confederate forces under Viscount Mountgarrett. Much of the town was burned following their march to Mallow in February of 1642. The mansion house withstood this attack, being at that time under the command of Arthur Buttesworth, but in 1645 had to submit to Lord Castlehaven. The Parliamentarians recovered it in 1646 through Inchiquin.

Windele, the Cork historian of the last century, recounts a curious story in relation to the Castle and Jephson saying 'his love of pleasure was greater than his fortune' and he fell into debt. One night a gentleman appeared unannounced and, putting a large bag of gold on the table, asked Jephson if he would like to be free of debt. Jephson eagerly responded wherewith the gentleman produced a white rat and said that he could have the gold, provided that he agree to have the rat with him at all meal times, sitting on the chair to his right. Bemused, Jephson agreed and was the object of some merriment for years, until eventually, growing tired of the banter, the animal was excluded. After the guests had gone, the stranger was ushered into the room once again.

"Have you fulfilled your promise?"

"Yes until this night."

"The promise was forever," whereupon the stranger whisked up Sir John Jephson and flew with him out of the window. The white rat was, in after years, supposed to appear before the demise of the head of the family.

In another story it is said that the ghosts of Jephson and Miss Norreys walk on the avenue under the ruin in the evening. It is also said that lights are seen in the windows of the old castle. The mansion was then apparently still habitable although it had suffered damage. It was an oblong building with gables about 80ft. by 30ft. with small turrets at its corners for defence and with four sided projecting wings on the style of Monkstown or Mount Long. The entrance, with a semi-elliptical headed doorway, is in one of these and the other contained the stairs and garderobes. The windows were mullioned and have square heads with hoods. The floors, which were of timber, are gone so the building is a shell; which impression is helped by the fact that much of the inner furnishing was of timber as well. An extension at the southern end contained a kitchen area which abutted from the main building. The main part of the building is of red sandstone, with facings of cut limestone, much of which must have come from the old castle. There is little to aid defence apart from some slit windows in the towers.

The well-known clock in the Clock House, a few yards away from the castle, is said to have come from this mansion. A portion of the east wall fell down in 1836. After the failure at the Battle of the Boyne, MacDonogh MacCarthy moved from the Cork area with the apparent intention of taking the castle. Major-General Scavemore, who was approaching the town from the other direction, sent Colonel Dundas ahead to burn the bridge in an effort to stop the Jacobite advance. The Williamites then attacked the Irish Forces in the meadow near the bridge and defeated them. Just the same, the mansion was so badly damaged that when the Jephsons returned after the war they decided that the building was too far gone for repair so they settled in what had been the stables and eventually made them into the charming building which is called the modern Mallow Castle. While it had been intended to repair the building, this was never done.

The old mansion was made a National Monument in 1928. Brigadier Maurice Denham Jephson and his wife Eileen were both killed in the Aer Lingus Viscount crash off the coast of Wexford in March 1968, her remains were found and brought back to Mallow for internment but his remains were never recovered. The castle then passed to Commander Maurice Christian Mounteney Jephson who disposed of the property, thus breaking a family link with Mallow which lasted almost four hundred years. The Castle was purchased by the McGinn family of Washington D.C. in 1984.


Doneraile Court/Demense

13 km north east of Mallow at the outskirts of Doneraile Village is the most magnificent and beautiful Doneraile Court. Surrounded by wildlife and has the best 400 acres of vast grasslands for which you can enjoy and explore , shaded forest walks and you can view the deer that roam freely. Also there is a beautiful family area and play ground for the kids.


Bowens Court

13 km north east of Mallow at the outskirts of Doneraile Village is the most magnificent and beautiful Doneraile Court. Surrounded by wildlife and has the best 400 acres of vast grasslands for which you can enjoy and explore , shaded forest walks and you can view the deer that roam freely. Also there is a beautiful family area and play ground for the kids.

Ballybeg Abbey

Around 12 km north of Mallow (on the main Limerick Road) on the out skirts of the village of Buttevant stands the ruins of Ballybeg Abbey. The abbey was founded in 1237 by Phillip de Barry for the Canons Regular of St Augustice. His grandson, David Óg de Barry, enlarged the revenues of the priory in 1251. Ballybeg was an extensive foundation, the priory church measuring some 166 feet (51 m) in length and 26 feet (7.9 m) in width. The cloister, situated on the south side of the church was 90 feet (27 m) square. The monastery was later castellated in the 15th century. An interesting feature is the abbey’s dove cote – or pigeon house - to the south east of the church. A must see for all.

Dromaneen Castle

Dromaneen Castle, is situated overlooking the Blackwater river which was erected by the O'Callaghans around 1600. It was an L shaped tower with a fine fireplace on the first floor and three and four mullioned windows. At a later stage the eastern portion, with its finely moulded gate, was added to form a bawn to the east of the tower. The Castle suffered much in the Rebellion of 1641, when it was taken from the O'Callaghans, granted to Sir Richard Kyrle, and later sold to Richard Newman of Cork.

Spenser's Castle

Kilcolman Castle or Spenser' Castle was the residence in Ireland of Sir Edmund Spenser, born in 1552 who served as secretary to Sir Arthur Grey, the Lord Deputy of Ireland, from 1580 until the end of his life in 1599. Here Spenser worked on his great epic, The Faerie Queene. Edmand Spenser was an English poem and fantastical allegory celebrating the Tudor dynasty and Elizabeth I. He is recognized as one of the premier craftsmen of Modern English verse in its infancy, and one of the greatest poets in the English language.In the early 1590s, Spenser wrote a prose pamphlet titled, A View of the Present State of Ireland. This piece remained in manuscript until its publication and print in the mid-seventeenth century. It is probable that it was kept out of print during the author's lifetime because of its inflammatory content. The pamphlet argued that Ireland would never be totally 'pacified' by the English until its indigenous language and customs had been destroyed, if necessary by violence. Spenser recommended scorched earth tactics, such as he had seen used in the Desmond Rebellions, to create famine. Although it has been highly regarded as a polemical piece of prose and valued as a historical source on 16th century Ireland, the View is seen today as genocidal in intent. Spenser's castle was destroyed and he was driven back to England during the Irish revolts in the 1590's, and only the shell remains. Kilcolman Wildfowl Refuge, as it is now known, is internationally important in the protection of species including mallard, teal, shoveler, pochard and wigeon ducks, as well as Whooper and Berwick swans. Today, hides for birdwatchers and wildlife enthusiasts, strategically located around the bog, are an integral part of its function in the conservation of wintering wildfowl. The refuge may be visited by prior appointment with the owners

Killavullen Caves

The spectacular Killavullen Caves are located in the village of Killavullen, 9.5kms. east of Mallow. Situated in a limestone crag on the bank of the River Blackwater, these extraordinary caves are accessed from the grounds of the18th century Ballymacmoy House, the ancestral home of the Hennessy (brandy) family. Here Palaeolithic human remains, along with remains of Irish Elk, brown bear, wolf and other animals from the end of the Ice Age have been excavated.

Barretts Castle

Just south of Mallow lies Barretts Castle situated on a commanding elevation high above the River Clyda. The walls of Barretts Castle are still standing. The Barrett family is said to have come to Ireland with 'Strongbow' about the end of the 12th Century.The Barretts (Baroid—Cork, Baireid—Mayo) came to Ireland with the Anglo-Norman invasion and settled as two families of the same Welsh stock, one of which, seated at Castle Barrett, became influential in central County Cork, where they were large landowners down to the year 1691. In that year the then head of the Cork family, Colonel John Barrett, was deprived of 12,000 acres for raising a regiment of infantry for King James’ Irish army. The Cork Barretts had already suffered loss of land under earlier English encroachments, and originally had been proprietors of the whole of what is now the Barony of Barrett, formerly known as Barrett’s Country.

The Spa House

The discovery in 1724 of the curative powers of its Spa made Mallow one of the chief holiday resorts in Ireland for the years 1730 - 1810, a period during which 'the Grattans and Ned Lysaghts' of the day proffered snuff boxes, sat at card tables and danced minuets in the evening after drinking the waters.

The water has a mean temperature of 72 Fahrenheit and varies from 72 to 66 according to the season. The clear spring water was considered, in the opinion of eminent medical men, as a blood purifier of no mean quality. The curative season began in April and lasted to October, the general routine being that valetudinarians took the water before breakfast and between mid-day and 5p.m. Not unnaturally, the people of Mallow, finding so unexpected a source of emolument in their midst, began to model themselves on the inhabitants of Bath, to circulate rumours of cures.

Among the more popular enticements was a new ballad on the hot well of Mallow, published 1753, the tenor of which may be gauged for yourself.


The Clock House

The Clock House was build c. 1855, by Sir Denham Orlando Jephson. He was an amateur architect who is said to have designed this house after he had returned from an alpine holiday. The Clock was brought from the tower of the Old Mallow Castle. The bell was cast at Millerd St., Cork. The Clock House is a fine example of a half-timbered Tudor construction. The bell tower became dangerous and was removed c. 1970.

The Clock House was originally a licensed premises. The first tenant was Mr. Michael Nunan. It is presently occupied by Colman Dalton, a firm of Accountants and Tax Consultants. The upper floor sometimes houses Art Exhibitions. In front of the Clock House once stood a water-trough over which was the statue of "The Little Man". This was presented to the town by the Right Honourable Judge Johnson.

Judge Johnson was M.P. for Mallow in 1880 and in gratitude to the town's people he presented the town with a water-trough complete with the Little Man and overhead gaslight. This was a distinguished landmark for many years, but it was unable to survive the hazards of modern traffic. The Little Man now resides in the Spa Park. At the Clock House there he stood on guard, A friend to one and all. He never spoke, nor said a word nor issued forth a call. Restoration of the Clock House began in September 1996 with the bell tower being returned to its lofty eminence. Renovation of the entire building was undertaken. Now in 2008/2009 the Clock House is due for another renovation and when complete should see the Clock House restored to its former glory as a focal point for the town.

The Blackwater River

The Blackwater An Abhann Mhór, The Great River) is a river which flows through counties Kerry, Cork, and Waterford in Ireland. It rises in the Mullaghareirk Mountains in County Kerry and then flows in an easterly direction through County Cork, through Mallow and Fermoy. It then enters County Waterford where it flows through Lismore, before abruptly turning south at Cappoquin, and finally draining into the sea at Youghal Harbour. In total, the Blackwater is 168 kilometres long. It is notable for being one of the best salmon fishing rivers in the country. Like most British and Irish rivers, salmon stocks declined in recent years, but the Irish Government banned commercial netting of salmon off the coast of Ireland in November, 2006.


Mallow railway station

Mallow railway station is located in Annabella, just a one minute walk from the Roundabout Inn . It is two miles from Cork racecourse. Mallow station is located just north of the junction between the lines from Cork and Tralee.The station opened on 17 March 1849.

Cork Racecourse Mallow

Organised racing in the Mallow region goes back as far as 1777 when 6 consecutive days racing was held under the auspices of the King's Plate Articles. When Cork Park racecourse closed in 1917 it left a sporting void to be filled in Ireland's largest county and so in 1924 Mallow racecourse was formed.

A few miles down the road from Cork Racecourse was the scene of the historic race which gave the world the phrase "steeplechasing", now a descriptive term for a race over fences. In 1752 two sporting Cork gentlemen, Edmund Blake and Cornelius O'Callaghan, wanted to find out which of their horses was the better so they organised a 4 1/2 mile race across country from the steeple of the St John's Church in Buttevant to that of St Mary's in Doneraile. Blake won the match and the bet, which was a cask of wine.

The racecourse became an emergency airfield on April 18, 1983, when a Mexican Gulfstream II business jet made a precautionary landing. A temporary tarmacadam runway of 910 m (3,000 ft) in length was laid to enable the aircraft to leave five weeks later on May 23, 1983. The runway was subsequently utilised for parking during race meets and was a popular facility for learner driving. Light aircraft have occasionally landed at the racecourse on the grass area. The F3A World Model Aircraft Aerobatic Championship was held there in 2001