Bundoran
Overview
 
Bundoran is a town in County Donegal
County Donegal
County Donegal is a county in Ireland. It is part of the Border Region and is also located in the province of Ulster. It is named after the town of Donegal. Donegal County Council is the local authority for the county...

, part of the Province of Ulster
Ulster
Ulster is one of the four provinces of Ireland, located in the north of the island. In ancient Ireland, it was one of the fifths ruled by a "king of over-kings" . Following the Norman invasion of Ireland, the ancient kingdoms were shired into a number of counties for administrative and judicial...

 in the north of Ireland
Ireland
Ireland is an island to the northwest of continental Europe. It is the third-largest island in Europe and the twentieth-largest island on Earth...

. The town is located on the N15 road
Roads in Ireland
The island of Ireland, comprising Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland, has an extensive network of tens of thousands of kilometres of public roads, usually surfaced. These roads have been developed and modernised over centuries, from trackways suitable only for walkers and horses, to...

 near Ballyshannon
Ballyshannon
Ballyshannon is a town in County Donegal, Ireland. It is located where the N3 and N15 cross the River Erne, and claims to be the oldest town in Ireland.-Location:...

, 3 hours drive from Dublin and around two and a quarter hours drive from Belfast
Belfast
Belfast is the capital of and largest city in Northern Ireland. By population, it is the 14th biggest city in the United Kingdom and second biggest on the island of Ireland . It is the seat of the devolved government and legislative Northern Ireland Assembly...

. The town is well known as one of Ireland's most popular seaside resorts.
Bundoran, or as it is known in Irish
Irish language
Irish , also known as Irish Gaelic, is a Goidelic language of the Indo-European language family, originating in Ireland and historically spoken by the Irish people. Irish is now spoken as a first language by a minority of Irish people, as well as being a second language of a larger proportion of...

 Bun Dobhráin (which means the foot of the little water), was, up until over a century ago, two separate villages.
Encyclopedia
Bundoran is a town in County Donegal
County Donegal
County Donegal is a county in Ireland. It is part of the Border Region and is also located in the province of Ulster. It is named after the town of Donegal. Donegal County Council is the local authority for the county...

, part of the Province of Ulster
Ulster
Ulster is one of the four provinces of Ireland, located in the north of the island. In ancient Ireland, it was one of the fifths ruled by a "king of over-kings" . Following the Norman invasion of Ireland, the ancient kingdoms were shired into a number of counties for administrative and judicial...

 in the north of Ireland
Ireland
Ireland is an island to the northwest of continental Europe. It is the third-largest island in Europe and the twentieth-largest island on Earth...

. The town is located on the N15 road
Roads in Ireland
The island of Ireland, comprising Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland, has an extensive network of tens of thousands of kilometres of public roads, usually surfaced. These roads have been developed and modernised over centuries, from trackways suitable only for walkers and horses, to...

 near Ballyshannon
Ballyshannon
Ballyshannon is a town in County Donegal, Ireland. It is located where the N3 and N15 cross the River Erne, and claims to be the oldest town in Ireland.-Location:...

, 3 hours drive from Dublin and around two and a quarter hours drive from Belfast
Belfast
Belfast is the capital of and largest city in Northern Ireland. By population, it is the 14th biggest city in the United Kingdom and second biggest on the island of Ireland . It is the seat of the devolved government and legislative Northern Ireland Assembly...

. The town is well known as one of Ireland's most popular seaside resorts.

Origins

Bundoran, or as it is known in Irish
Irish language
Irish , also known as Irish Gaelic, is a Goidelic language of the Indo-European language family, originating in Ireland and historically spoken by the Irish people. Irish is now spoken as a first language by a minority of Irish people, as well as being a second language of a larger proportion of...

 Bun Dobhráin (which means the foot of the little water), was, up until over a century ago, two separate villages. Bundoran was the village west of the bridge over the River Bradoge. This area is now called the West End. East of the bridge, about 2 kilometres (1 mi) away, was the village of Single Street. In between these two separate communities was the townland of Drumacrin. The area of Drumcacrin is now part of what is today's town centre. Single Street was where most of the local population lived. It was only after completion of the Enniskillen and Bundoran Railway
Enniskillen and Bundoran Railway
The Enniskillen and Bundoran Railway was an Irish gauge railway company in north-west Ireland. It linked Bundoran and Ballyshannon on the Atlantic coast of Donegal with the Londonderry and Enniskillen Railway at in Fermanagh...

 in 1868, which opened a terminus that it called Bundoran, that the two distinct communities developed and merged to what are today called Bundoran.

The first official record of Bundoran is in a deposition by Hugh Gaskein on May 16, 1653. He was a witness to events during the 1641 Rebellion when he was an apprentice butcher in Sligo. William Cole, Viscount Enniskillen built Bundoran Lodge, his summer home, in 1777. This building still stands on Bayview Avenue and is now called Homefield House. The Viscount seems to have started a trend amongst his contemporaries as more of them discovered Bundoran and visited it to enjoy the seaside and what were believed to be its health benefits.

The Public Rights of Way

The rights of the people to have access to the seashore were blocked by a local landlord but the locals found a champion in the parish priest Canon Kelaghan who fought through the courts in 1870 to ensure that the pathways and roads to the beach remained open to the public. Canon Kelaghan also had the present Catholic church built in 1859.

The Railway

The opening of the Enniskillen and Bundoran Railway (E&BR) in 1868 connected Bundoran with Ireland's growing railway network and made the town more accessible from Belfast
Belfast Great Victoria Street railway station
Belfast Great Victoria Street is a major railway station serving the city centre of Belfast, Northern Ireland. It is one of two major stations in the city, along with , and is one of the four stations located in the city centre, the others being Belfast Central, and . It is near Great Victoria...

, Dublin
Dublin Connolly railway station
Dublin Connolly, commonly called Connolly station , is one of the main railway stations in Dublin, Ireland, and is a focal point in the Irish route network. Opened in 1844 as Amiens Street Station, the ornate facade has a distinctive Italianate tower at its centre...

 and other population centres on the east and north-east coasts of Ireland. The Great Northern Railway
Great Northern Railway (Ireland)
The Great Northern Railway was an Irish gauge railway company in Ireland.The Great Northern was formed in 1876 by a merger of the Irish North Western Railway , Northern Railway of Ireland, and Ulster Railway. The Ulster Railway was the GNRI's oldest constituent, having opened between Belfast and...

 (GNR) operated the E&BR line from 1876 and absorbed the company in 1896.

In this period Bundoran emerged as one of Ireland's most popular seaside resorts. By the end of the 19th century it had become one of the main seaside resorts in Ulster. Hotels and lodging houses were opened around the town and the GNR built the Great Northern Hotel, one of Bundoran's best-known landmarks.

During The Emergency of 1939–45 the GNR introduced the Bundoran Express that linked Dublin and Bundoran via and Enniskillen
Enniskillen
Enniskillen is a town in County Fermanagh, Northern Ireland. It is located almost exactly in the centre of the county between the Upper and Lower sections of Lough Erne. It had a population of 13,599 in the 2001 Census...

. It also carried pilgrims to and from Pettigo
Pettigo
Pettigo is a small village on the border of County Donegal, Republic of Ireland and County Fermanagh, Northern Ireland. It is bisected by the Termon River which is part of the border between the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland...

, which was the nearest station for Lough Derg
Lough Derg
Lough Derg is the name of two lakes in Ireland:* Lough Derg a large lake on the River Shannon, bordering counties Clare, Galway and Tipperary.* Lough Derg a small lake, a place of Christian pilgrimage....

. There were also through trains between Bundoran and Belfast.

The partition of Ireland
Partition of Ireland
The partition of Ireland was the division of the island of Ireland into two distinct territories, now Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland . Partition occurred when the British Parliament passed the Government of Ireland Act 1920...

 in 1922 turned the boundary with County Fermanagh
County Fermanagh
Fermanagh District Council is the only one of the 26 district councils in Northern Ireland that contains all of the county it is named after. The district council also contains a small section of County Tyrone in the Dromore and Kilskeery road areas....

 into an international frontier. Henceforth Bundoran's only railway link with the rest of the Irish Free State
Irish Free State
The Irish Free State was the state established as a Dominion on 6 December 1922 under the Anglo-Irish Treaty, signed by the British government and Irish representatives exactly twelve months beforehand...

 was via Northern Ireland
Northern Ireland
Northern Ireland is one of the four countries of the United Kingdom. Situated in the north-east of the island of Ireland, it shares a border with the Republic of Ireland to the south and west...

, and as such was subject to delays for customs
Customs
Customs is an authority or agency in a country responsible for collecting and safeguarding customs duties and for controlling the flow of goods including animals, transports, personal effects and hazardous items in and out of a country...

 inspections. The Government of Northern Ireland
Government of Northern Ireland
The Government of Northern Ireland is, generally speaking, whatever political body exercises political authority over Northern Ireland. A number of separate systems of government exist or have existed in Northern Ireland....

 closed much of the GNR network on its side of the border in 1957, including the E&BR as far as the border. This gave the Republic no practical alternative but to allow the closure of the line between the border and Bundoran. Thereafter the nearest railhead
Railhead
The word railhead is a railway term with two distinct meanings, depending upon its context.Sometimes, particularly in the context of modern freight terminals, the word is used to denote a terminus of a railway line, especially if the line is not yet finished, or if the terminus interfaces with...

s for Bundoran were in the Republic and Omagh
Omagh
Omagh is the county town of County Tyrone, Northern Ireland. It is situated where the rivers Drumragh and Camowen meet to form the Strule. The town, which is the largest in the county, had a population of 19,910 at the 2001 Census. Omagh also contains the headquarters of Omagh District Council and...

 in Northern Ireland, until in 1965 the Ulster Transport Authority
Ulster Transport Authority
The Ulster Transport Authority ran rail and bus transport in Northern Ireland from 1948 until 1966.-Formation and consolidation:The UTA was formed by the Transport Act 1948, which merged the Northern Ireland Road Transport Board and the Belfast and County Down Railway...

 closed the line through Omagh as well.

Bundoran Beach

For almost two centuries people have flocked to Bundoran beach on hot summer days. The tradition of bathing boxes began in Victorian times. They were primarily used by members of the gentry, who were reticent about undressing in public. The boxes were pushed, on wheels, to the water’s edge and the customer entered the box through one door, put on their bathing costume and stepped out another door to enter the sea. The box remained there until the bather was finished, dried off and fully clothed again. The bathing box was brought back to its original position on the beach, ready for the next client.

Stationary bathing boxes were introduced in the early 1900s. They proved more amenable and cheaper to the public. In the 1920s, Mrs Elizabeth Travers and her brother-in-law, Bilshie Travers (uncle of the famous Bilshie Travers, former Lord Mayor of Bundoran) hired the boxes from the local Council. For 3 old pennies a customer hired a bathing costume and for 6 old pennies they could hire “the whole package” which consisted of a bathing cap, costume and towel. The bathing costume was washed in a bucket and hung up to dry until the next customer came along. A familiar sight on the beach in the 1950s and 1960s was “The Duck”. This was a former British Army amphibious craft that ferried tourists out onto the Bay. It was operated by the Rooney family. Despite being prone to breakdown, it was a major attraction at the time.

Modern Bundoran

The growth of the holiday industry in the 20th century coincided with shorter working hours, more leisure time, more affluence and the development of activity based holidays. At the beginning of the 21st century Bundoran has continued to enhance its reputation by becoming Ireland's surfing capital and providing amenities like Waterworld which include seaweed baths. The seaweed baths were very popular with previous generations. The town also has many modern hotels, guesthouses, restaurants, night-clubs, bars and amusements. It also has sporting facilities such as golf and horse riding.

Central Hotel Fire

Tragedy struck on August 8, 1980 when a fire broke out at The Central Hotel in the heart of the town.Ten people died as a result, including five children. In September 2008, Bundoran Town Council purchased a new stained glass
Stained glass
The term stained glass can refer to coloured glass as a material or to works produced from it. Throughout its thousand-year history, the term has been applied almost exclusively to the windows of churches and other significant buildings...

 window for the local Catholic church listing the names of the ten people who lost their lives. The Council also erected a stone monument bench on Central Lane (beside the Central Hotel) in August 2010 as a mark of respect.

Transport

  • The opening in April 2006 of the Bundoran/Ballyshannon bypass has made the resort more accessible. The Drowes River, where the southern part of the bypass commences and which separates County Leitrim
    County Leitrim
    County Leitrim is a county in Ireland. It is located in the West Region and is also part of the province of Connacht. It is named after the village of Leitrim. Leitrim County Council is the local authority for the county...

     from County Donegal
    County Donegal
    County Donegal is a county in Ireland. It is part of the Border Region and is also located in the province of Ulster. It is named after the town of Donegal. Donegal County Council is the local authority for the county...

    , is also the demarcation point between the provinces of Connacht
    Connacht
    Connacht , formerly anglicised as Connaught, is one of the Provinces of Ireland situated in the west of Ireland. In Ancient Ireland, it was one of the fifths ruled by a "king of over-kings" . Following the Norman invasion of Ireland, the ancient kingdoms were shired into a number of counties for...

     to the south and Ulster
    Ulster
    Ulster is one of the four provinces of Ireland, located in the north of the island. In ancient Ireland, it was one of the fifths ruled by a "king of over-kings" . Following the Norman invasion of Ireland, the ancient kingdoms were shired into a number of counties for administrative and judicial...

     to the north.
  • Bundoran Railway Station opened on 13 June 1866, but finally closed on 1 October 1957. The New Council Offices carpark is where the Bundoran Railway Station once stood.

Recent development

Bundoran has seen much development over the past decade, due to its popularity as a seaside destination and the availability of tax reliefs for the development of holiday homes. Bundoran Thousands of music fans attend the Bundoran Sea Sessions Surf and Music Festival every June.

Astoria Ballroom

The Astoria Ballroom was built in 1953 at a time when dances were a major social activity. Showbands spent many years entertaining large crowds in The Astoria Ballroom. In more recent years, The Astoria Ballroom, under the ownership of Brian McEniff
Brian McEniff
Brian McEniff is known in Ireland as being a successful Gaelic football manager.-Early Life:...

, was to have a number of face lifts and temporary name changes from Planet Earth Nightclub to Bling, and in the 1980s extended to add a new bar. The Astoria Ballroom was a landmark building. However, on 29 November 2008, it was destroyed by fire. It took the fire brigades of Bundoran, Ballyshannon and Belleek
Belleek, County Fermanagh
Belleek is a village in County Fermanagh, Northern Ireland. While the greater part of the village lies within County Fermanagh, part of it crosses the border into County Donegal, a part of Ulster that lies in the Republic of Ireland. This makes Belleek the western-most village in the United Kingdom...

 over nine hours to extinguish. Two Bundoran firemen sustained burns from the blaze.

Education

On Railway Road stands the St Louis School, which was built in 1892. The buildings included a School and residence for the Sisters of St Louis. One of the buildings still stands today. Around the same time, the Sisters of St Louis had their secondary school beside the Old Grand Central Cinema in the premises known as The Sea View Hotel.

The St Joseph's orphanages were erected from funds bequeathed by the late Miss Sarah Crudden, Newtownbutler
Newtownbutler
Newtownbutler or Newtown Butler is a small village in County Fermanagh, Northern Ireland. It is in the southeast corner of the County, close to the border with County Monaghan and the town of Clones. It is surrounded by small lakes and bogland and close to Lough Erne...

. These buildings later became known as Ard Lughaidh, much of the building was stone and also had a large sports and theatre hall all of which in 2006 the VEC demolished them for no reason. All that is left on the lands is the extension area used till 1980's by 'live in' students of the Ard Lughaidh, however this is now under the Donegal Adventure Centre ownership. Due to the decreasing class sizes in Ard Lughaigh in the 1990s the school faced closure and some students moved to Ballyshannon. http://historical-debates.oireachtas.ie/D/0396/D.0396.199003130129.html Some of the St. Louis nuns moved to the St. Louis building at Railway Road, however a lot moved away.http://www.classmates.ie/list_all.php?county=Donegal

Bundoran is also home to Atlanticside College, a privately run educational institution that offers a wide range of study courses aimed at both Irish and international students.

'Adult Education' is provided to unemployed persons who wish to return to learning in the Adult Education and Training Centre, Ballyshannon VTOS. A two year FETAC Level 5 Business Studies course is provided in Ballyshannon VTOS and run by Donegal County Vocational Education Committee
Vocational Education Committee
A Vocational Education Committee is a statutory local education body in the Republic of Ireland that administers some secondary education, most adult education and a very small amount of primary education in the state...

 VEC through funding from the Department of Education and Skills under the National Development Plan
National Development Plan
National Development Plan is the title given by the Irish Government to a scheme of organised large-scale expenditure on national infrastructure. The period covered by the seven year plan runs from 2000 to 2006. A second National Development Plan is currently in progress and is due to run until...

 2007 to 2013.

Surfing

In recent times Bundoran has become noted as a surfing
Surfing
Surfing' is a surface water sport in which the surfer rides a surfboard on the crest and face of a wave which is carrying the surfer towards the shore...

 location. Bundoran has surf holiday breaks suitable for beginners and people looking to improve as well as world class surf for experts.

Golf

There is an 18 hole golf course in Bundoran. The golf club was founded in 1894. The course is located on the historic Great Northern Railway Company site, the old railway sleepers encompass the Golf course which enjoys the most breathtaking and scenic views of the Atlantic Ocean
Atlantic Ocean
The Atlantic Ocean is the second-largest of the world's oceanic divisions. With a total area of about , it covers approximately 20% of the Earth's surface and about 26% of its water surface area...

. The course is a challenging experience despite its short length.

Bundoran GAA

Bundoran GAA was founded in 1916. In the 1920s the location of Bundoran on the railway line made the Bundoran local ground a convenient venue for many big games. The G.A.A.
Gaelic Athletic Association
The Gaelic Athletic Association is an amateur Irish and international cultural and sporting organisation focused primarily on promoting Gaelic games, which include the traditional Irish sports of hurling, camogie, Gaelic football, handball and rounders...

 club grounds were purchased in 1938. The club was reorganised and renamed 'The Star of the Sea'. The football park has undergone many developments throughout the years. The ground was levelled in 1947 and enclosed in 1951. The club changing rooms were constructed in 1972.

The juniors were successful in both the 1956 and 1960 Championships. In 1963, "Star of the Sea joined with Ballyshannon team 'Aodh Rua' to become 'St. Joseph's'. That team included many players that contributed to the Donegal team, including Brian McEniff
Brian McEniff
Brian McEniff is known in Ireland as being a successful Gaelic football manager.-Early Life:...

 and the former Donegal County Council Manager Michael mcLoone.

In 1977 the club was again divided into two clubs, one each for the towns of Bundoran and Ballyshannon
Ballyshannon
Ballyshannon is a town in County Donegal, Ireland. It is located where the N3 and N15 cross the River Erne, and claims to be the oldest town in Ireland.-Location:...

.

In 1979, Bundoran beat Ballybofey in a nail-biting one point victory to win the Senior Championship. In 1992, local man Brian McEniff led Donegal to the All-Ireland Senior Football Championship, beating Dublin in the final 0-18 to 0-14. Bundoran was the scene of enormous celebrations for almost a month afterwards.

Famous natives

  • Brian McEniff
    Brian McEniff
    Brian McEniff is known in Ireland as being a successful Gaelic football manager.-Early Life:...

     - former Donegal
    Donegal GAA
    The Donegal County Board of the Gaelic Athletic Association or Donegal GAA is one of the 32 county boards of the GAA in Ireland, and is responsible for Gaelic games in County Donegal. The county board is also responsible for the Donegal inter-county teams.Gaelic football is strongest in the...

     manager.
  • Fr. Paddy Gallagher - founder of the Credit Union in Ireland.
  • The Most Rev. Dr. Liam MacDaid - Lord Bishop of Clogher
    Bishop of Clogher
    The Bishop of Clogher is an episcopal title which takes its name after the village of Clogher in County Tyrone, Northern Ireland. Following the Reformation, there are now parallel apostolic successions: one of the Church of Ireland and the other of the Roman Catholic Church.-History:Clogher is one...

  • Louis Lipsett
    Louis Lipsett
    Major General Louis James Lipsett CB, CMG , was a senior officer in the British Army and Canadian Expeditionary Force during the First World War. He commanded the 3rd Canadian Division during some of the bitterest battles of the war, taking over in 1915 after his predecessor was killed...

    , a former Major General in the British Army

In popular culture

  • The song "Beautiful Bundoran" was very popular all over Ireland in the 1950s
    1950s
    The 1950s or The Fifties was the decade that began on January 1, 1950 and ended on December 31, 1959. The decade was the sixth decade of the 20th century...

    , and it was performed by Sinéad O'Connor
    Sinéad O'Connor
    Sinéad Marie Bernadette O'Connor is an Irish singer-songwriter. She rose to fame in the late 1980s with her debut album The Lion and the Cobra and achieved worldwide success in 1990 with a cover of the song "Nothing Compares 2 U"....

     in the film The Butcher Boy
    The Butcher Boy (film)
    The Butcher Boy is an 1997 Irish tragicomic drama film adapted to film by Neil Jordan and Patrick McCabe from McCabe's 1992 novel of the same name....

    .

See also


International relations

Twin towns - Sister cities

Bundoran is a founding member of the Douzelage
Douzelage
The Douzelage is a town twinning association with one town from each of the member states of the European Union.The name is a combination of the French words "douze" for twelve and "jumelage" for twinning and stands for the twelve founder members, one for each European Union member state in 1991,...

, a unique town twinning
Town twinning
Twin towns and sister cities are two of many terms used to describe the cooperative agreements between towns, cities, and even counties in geographically and politically distinct areas to promote cultural and commercial ties.- Terminology :...

 association of 24 towns across the European Union
European Union
The European Union is an economic and political union of 27 independent member states which are located primarily in Europe. The EU traces its origins from the European Coal and Steel Community and the European Economic Community , formed by six countries in 1958...

. This active town twinning began in 1991 and there are regular events, such as a produce market from each of the other countries and festivals. Discussions regarding membership are also in hand with three further towns (Agros
Agros, Cyprus
Agros is a village built on the Troödos Mountains, in the region of Pitsilia, in southwest Cyprus, which has built amphitheatrically among high mountains at an altitude of 1100 metres with a population of approximately 1,000. Agros is one of the most interesting villages of Cyprus and the...

 in Cyprus
Cyprus
Cyprus , officially the Republic of Cyprus , is a Eurasian island country, member of the European Union, in the Eastern Mediterranean, east of Greece, south of Turkey, west of Syria and north of Egypt. It is the third largest island in the Mediterranean Sea.The earliest known human activity on the...

, Škofja Loka
Škofja Loka
-Art colony:Before the civil war in the former Yugoslavia the Serbian town of Smederevska Palanka and the town of Škofja Loka held art colonies Groharijeva kolonija run by an art teacher from elementary school Olga Milošević in Smederevska Palanka. Now, after the split of SFR Yugoslavia, the two...

 in Slovenia
Slovenia
Slovenia , officially the Republic of Slovenia , is a country in Central and Southeastern Europe touching the Alps and bordering the Mediterranean. Slovenia borders Italy to the west, Croatia to the south and east, Hungary to the northeast, and Austria to the north, and also has a small portion of...

, and Tryavna
Tryavna
Tryavna is a town in central Bulgaria, situated in the north slopes of the Balkan range, on the Tryavna river valley, near Gabrovo. It is famous for its textile industry and typical National Revival architecture, featuring 140 cultural monuments, museums and expositions...

 in Bulgaria
Bulgaria
Bulgaria , officially the Republic of Bulgaria , is a parliamentary democracy within a unitary constitutional republic in Southeast Europe. The country borders Romania to the north, Serbia and Macedonia to the west, Greece and Turkey to the south, as well as the Black Sea to the east...

).

External links


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