The Glenasmole Valley has a rich and colourful history. It is a glen that is featured in ancient writings and mythology. Many familiar names are associated with the valley, to the warriors Fionn Mac Cumhaill and his army The Fianna this valley was one of their favourite hunting grounds. Oisin returned from Tir na Nog and fell from his horse in Glenasmole aging three hundred years instantly. Saint Sanctan brought Christianity to the valley in the sixth century, the ruins of the church still visible today. The English King’s had a Royal Game Park in Glencree and when the hunt chase was no longer popular they used the forest’s oaks to build and repair the King’s ships. The infamous Buck Whaley and the decadent behaviour of The Hell Fire Club cast a dark and lingering shadow on this celebrated spot. A valley where rebels hid over the centuries of occupation, Robert Emmet disguised as a French officer found refuge and Eamon De Valera and Erskine Childers hid in Ballinascorney from the Free State Troopers. One of the oldest complete Irish texts, the story of Da Derga’s hostel which is over 2000 years old tells the story of the High King of Ireland, King Conaire Mor and his men doing battle in the valley with an army of five thousand raiders. There is evidence of communities and settlements in the valley going back five thousand years.
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