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wicklore
2011-04-22 21:37:58
"The Hell Fire Club" from wicklore Contract pics
Picture: The Hell Fire Club (Contract pics)

The Military Road: The Hellfire Club
The Military Road runs through the heart of the Dublin/Wicklow Mountains from Rathfarnham to Aughavannagh in deepest Wicklow. The road is 55kms long, and it was constructed between 1800 and 1809 in the wake of the 1798 Rebellion. It was designed to open up the wild Wicklow Mountains to the British army to assist them in reaching the insurgents who were hiding there. A number of military barracks were built along its length which were used to house the soldiers who could rapidly respond when rebels were afoot in the area.

Today the road offers excellent access to the mountains around Glenasmole, Glencree, Sally Gap, Glendasan, Glendalough, Glenmalure and Aughavannagh. It is a great route to see and admire some of the best scenery in Dublin & Wicklow. But besides the mountains and valleys there are many other things of interest along the road that are worth mentioning. From the supernatural to the mythical, the Military Road passes through areas rich in history.

One such curious piece of history is the Hell Fire Club. Shortly after the Military Road begins to rise above Dublin in Rathfarnham, it passes by the Hell Fire Woods car park on the slope of Montpelier Hill. At 383 metres, Montpelier Hill doesn’t have the required prominence to enter the MountainViews lists of hills. However this hill offers amazing views over Dublin and the coast. In 1725 a hunting lodge, named Mount Pelier, was built at the summit, using stone from a nearby passage tomb. The destruction of the tomb gave rise to a sense that the building was cursed. Soon after this a storm blew the roof off the building. The roof was rebuilt with more stone and a series of paranormal events were subsequently reported. The central belief was that the Devil was active on the hill and in the lodge. This reputation was further enhanced when members of the Irish Hell Fire Club, which was active in the years 1735 to 1741, began using the lodge as a meeting place. There were many stories of wild behaviour and debauchery as well as occult practices and demonic appearances which added to the local folklore. One tale involved the ritual killing of a dwarf. This will be revisited when I talk about Kilakee House in another post.

The Hell Fire Club is still standing, and appears as a hulking stone building. It is in surprisingly good repair considering it has been abandoned for two centuries. Whatever your beliefs, there are few people who don’t get an eerie feeling in its dark interior. I have personally seen a Rottweiler dog escape from its owner and leap from a first floor window. (Unharmed but raising the hair on the backs of the necks of the witnesses). With a good dose of spookiness it can be a thrilling place for children to visit with adult supervision.

So now when you whizz past the Hell Fire Club on the way to walk elsewhere in Dublin/Wicklow maybe you will take a moment to reflect on this curious place!
I have for some ti.. by CaptainVertigo   (Show all posts)


RECENT CONTRIBUTIONS 1 2 3 .. 22 Next page >>
Summit Comment
An Bhinn Bhuí: Benwee Head Loop.
sandman 20 hours ago.
As already stated Benwee Head has some of the most dramatic costal scenery in Ireland and with this in mind i decided to enjoy on a clear sunny day the joys of walking the 12.4km of the Benwee Hea...

  
Track
Meelin Hill, Brackloon and Knockafeehane
Bunsen7 22 hours ago.
A grand and simple waymarked trail for a day of low lying cloud.Park up at the post office beside the Tom Crean mini-p... walk, Len: 7.2km, Climb: 343m, Area: Knockafeehane, Slieve Mish (Ireland) Kno

  
Summit Comment
Knocknanacree: Storm Beach and Cliffs at lower western reaches
Bunsen7 22 hours ago.
A view of "Acres" from Minard Beach. This is apparently a geologically interesting spot in itself as it is a storm beach comprised of large sandstone boulders. The castle is on private land and no...

Track
Eagles Hill, Mullaghbeg, Beenrour
bogtrotter 23 hours ago.
There?s plenty of room for parking at the cemetery at the top of Coad Road, near Castle Cove. From here we headed SW ... walk, Len: 21.6km, Climb: 825m, Area: Eagles Hill, Dunkerron Mountains (Irelan

  
Forum: General
An Sli
Slier159 a day ago.
Hello all,I am currently trying to organize a longs distance walk from Killarney to Derry city, using the existing National Waymarked Trails along the West coast. A 1,000km of Trail already exist ...

  
Summit Comment
Knockafeehane: From the horse's mouth
Bunsen7 22 hours ago.
This is the trail description post at Q59652 00497. It summarises the route if taken from east to west, as per track 3881.Vastly superior to my own garbled efforts!Annascaul obviously is a very we...

Track
Erris Head Loop
simon3 a day ago.
Simple walk to Erris Head. On the occasion we did it, there were dark clouds and big showers. walk, Len: 4.7km, Climb: 98m, Area: Erris Head Hill, Mayo Coastal Hill (Ireland...

  
Summit Comment
Knockafeehane: Easily Accessible and not overly demanding
Bunsen7 22 hours ago.
There is a waymarked trail to the summit which loops over the ridge leading west from this hill. See track 3881.The quickest route to the top would see you park in Annascaul village and walk up th...

  
Summit Comment
Cashloura: An enjoyable walk for all ages
CaminoPat 2 days ago.
Park at W20849 49704 at Coillte forest entrance just off the R586 Regional Road between Dunmanway and Drimoleague. Parking available for 6-8 cars. Follow forest road which is along line of disused...

Summit Comment
An Bhinn Bhuí: Benwee Loop walk towards Portacloy.
ucampbell 3 days ago.
The Loop walks here are well signposted, it's a great idea to go out onto each headland.

  
Summit Comment
Doonvinalla N Top: Coastal Hill
sandman 4 days ago.
On 26/4/2014 i spent a very enjoyable afternoon walking this area visiting the army observation hut and the stone constructed EIRE marking as part of an addition to the Benwee Head Loop walk but i...

  
Forum: General
Riddle of the Spinc
BleckCra 6 days ago.
I was at Glendalough yesterday and on the Spinc for the first time. I cannot imagine there haven't already been a thousand hours debate on the boardwalk and and that there won't be a thousand hour...


RECENT CONTRIBUTIONS 1 2 3 .. 22 Next page >>