Around Portarlington Way

Around Portarlington Way


Sergeant Dave Lynam, Portarlington Garda Station has put out a message to the public. “If you know of any vulnerable people, or anyone that needs assistance with anything, please don’t hesitate to contact the Station at (057) 8674100.” Unfortunately, they can’t be used to take people to appointments but are there for anything else.



The Bracknagh Community Association would like to know if Meals on Wheels could help anyone in the Bracknagh Area.

Is “Meals on Wheels” an option for you or someone you know? This is a new service we are hoping to introduce into Bracknagh. Please don’t hesitate to get in touch with any queries. Contact Lisa @ 0872979721 or e-mail


Portarlington Meals on Wheels thank Portarlington Credit Union for their donation this week of 2 vouchers from SuperValu and Centra worth €250 each. They can be assured that all donations to the Service are used wisely to the running of this great service. The committee wish to thank everyone for their generosity during these times. The centre could not have kept going for 48 years without the generosity of the public.



For those of you who have wondered about this monument in the Peoples Park, I have asked our storyteller Pat McNamara if he had some info for us. Pat lives in Dublin but grew up in Bracklone St Portarlington.

For those who grew up in the town and were familiar with the famous Sean O’Feeka who resided in Odlums Wood before he was moved to the Peoples Park.



The statue lying in Kilnacourt House was over 70 years old before Cooltedery became Portarlington in the year 1666. The effigy is that of Robert Hartpole, Constable of Carlow Castle.

Hartpole seems to have managed to achieve a stake in the Plantation about 1563 at Coolbanagher, elsewhere in Leix. Hartpole had been a soldier in Ireland since the mid 1550s when he was a deputy constable of Leighlin Bridge Castle. Hartpole was constable of Carlow Castle until his death in 1594, where he was succeeded by his son William. His tomb, believed to have been in St. Mary’s Church in Carlow, was adorned with a fine effigy of Hartpole in armour. (Sean De Feeka)

The story behind Sean O Feeka

If Hartpole wished to commemorate himself as a valiant knight in shining armour, a particularly noteworthy detail of his service in Ireland contradicts this view.

Grantees of the plantation were obliged to military service for three days with servants armed. The Gaelic Irish grantees were summoned under these terms to the earthen rath of Mullaghmast in Co. Kildare on New Year’s day 1577.

There they were massacred by the English planters, including Francis Cosby and Robert Hartpole, acting under the authority of Lord Deputy Sidney.

Recent disgraceful actions carried out at Mullamast on behalf of the Justice Sidney by Englishman Hartpole of the household of the same Justice.

Mullaghmast Rath

Mullaghmast Rath. Photo courtesy of

Hartpole and Francis Cosby were also implicated in the account from ‘Annales Breves Hiberniae’, a contemporary document written by Thaddeus O Dowling;

  1. Moris Mac Lasy Mac Conyll O’More, Lord of Merggi (as he asserted), and successor of the Baron of Omergi (Slewmargy ?), with forty of his followers, after his confederation with Rory O’More, and after a certain promise of protection, was slain at Mullaghmastyn, in the county of Kildare, the place appointed for it, by Master Cosby and Robert Harpoole, having been summoned there treacherously, under pretence of performing service. Harpoole excused it that Morris had given villanous words to the breach of his protection.’

The Annals of the four masters records that this was not an act of war; instead as;

‘A horrible and abominable act of treachery committed by the English of Leinster and Meath upon that part of the people of Offaly and Leix that remained in confederacy with them, and under their protection. It was effected thus: they were all summoned to shew themselves, with the greatest number they could be able to bring with them, at the great rath of Mullach-Maistean; and on their arrival at that place they were surrounded on every side by four lines of soldiers and cavalry, who proceeded to shoot and slaughter them without mercy, so that not a single individual escaped, by flight or force’. (M1577.14).

The numbers killed are in dispute, between 40 (from the English Report) to 400 (from Irish Report).

The legend, and possibly the memory of Mullaghmast which had recently been stoked by Daniel O’Connell’s mass meeting on the hill, made such an impact that when Hartpole’s forgotten tomb was uncovered during a renovation of the graveyard of St. Mary’s Church at the end of the nineteenth century, it was decapitated by the angry workmen, and had to be taken into the grounds of Kilnacourt House in Portarlington by a distant relative for safety.

The inscription reads: Here, lies, Robert Hartpoole, Constable of Carlow, he died on the 3rd day of October 1594, being more than a septuagenrian.

The language is Gothic and Roman letters, the date is in Arab numerals.

I referred to the statue as Sean De Piquer (French for Pierced, Pricked) with reference to the angry workman above. After all French was spoken in the streets of Port for many years after the Huguenots arrived c. 1696.

Now the statue is in the town Park.


Thanks Pat.

A stroll through Woodbrook Woods Portarlington


Derryounce Walks and Lakes are a valuable asset for the town & hinterland of Portarlington.

A gofundme page has been set up to help purchase some badly needed equipment for the volunteers who look after Derryounce. The upkeep of Derryounce is carried out by a dedicated team of volunteers who often use their own equipment.

It is used by a wide variety of people, including walkers, anglers, naturalists, photographers and people who want to experience its peace and tranquillity. Your donation would be much appreciated.



Deepest Sympathy to the family of Robert Liston, Killenard & formerly Moyneard Moyne, Thurles who passed away recently at his home surrounded by his loving family. Robert was predeceased by his parents Kathleen & Billy Liston, sister Pauline & brother Dick. He will be sadly missed by his son Andrew, daughter Katie, wife Philomena, sisters Josephine, Marie & Frances, brothers Paddy, Willie & John, his extended family & friends. A family funeral was held & a celebration of Roberts life will take place at a later date. May Robert rest in Peace.



Deepest Sympathy to the family of Paddy Shortall, Emmet Tce Mountmellick & formerly Corrig Portarlington who passed away on Sunday May 17. (Retired Bord na Mona). Paddy was predeceased by his wife Eileen. He will be sadly missed by his daughters, son, grandchildren, great-grandchild, extended family, neighbours & many friends. Paddys Requiem Mass took place on Wednesday May 20 in St Joseph’s Church Mountmellick. May Paddy rest in Peace.

You can follow Masses live on


You can watch Mass at St Michael’s Church Portarlington when you click in here.


The Portarlington Civic Amenity Site on the Lea road are open for recyclable goods and will continue to open on Tuesdays and Thursdays 8am to 3.30pm. Saturdays 8am to 1pm. These opening hours are under regular review. In the interests of the health, safety and welfare of staff and members of the public, please take note of the Covid 19 control measures on site.


Are you looking for a face mask and would like to help a good cause at the same time?

All money goes towards the Webb Cancer Ward in Tallaght Hospital for their care to all patients in the unit.

For information please contact 086-8486046.

Laois People head out ‘Around Portarlington Way’


Portarlington lawn Tennis Club are strictly Social Distancing. The system is set up to protect all, especially family members with young children or vulnerable adults. They are given private usage of the courts. PLEASE, PLEASE do not make Assumptions when you look in. Many of their memberships are Family, living in the same household with adult children and older teenagers. This can give a wrong impression at times. To make appointment to access the court please contact 0871231135.