Duncannon is a fishing village characterised by a promontory fort, 6
miles north of Hook Head, with inner and outer harbours.
outer pier offers: LWS draught 0.5 m (1.64 ft) but can be 1.5m LWN at
the end of the pier.
This commercial pier can be
exposed in strong
NW winds and
fishing vessels have priority access. However the end of the pier is
utilised by the local charter boats and offers access for short
visits. There are also slipways on the east side of the outer harbour
and inner harbour. The small, inner harbour is very sheltered with a
mud bottom and can be accessed at high tide but will dry out at all
Fort has a white tower with a red stripe Oc WR 4s 13m 9/7M, and this
lighthouse combined with Black Head Lighthouse Oc 6s 39m 10M are the
leading lights for the channel. The position at the end of the outer
pier wall is:
13.327' N, 006° 56.283' W. Be
wary of approaching the harbours on a strong ebb tide.
has restaurants, cafes, pubs and a small shop.
The long strand below the fort has Blue flag status and hosts sand
sculpting and kite surfing festivals.
The Fort is open to visitors with guided tours June to September and
with a café, the Cockleshell Arts Centre, craft shops and exhibitions.
Contact Strand Tavern,
Fort’s 30 ft high dry moat walls with ramparts, defend the inner fort
buildings, which surround a parade ground and one of the oldest
lighthouses of its kind in Ireland. Located at a lower level than the
moat is the Croppy Boy Cell, where after the 1798 rebellion, prisoners
were detained pending transfer to Geneva Barracks at Passage East, for
trial and sentencing.
is derived from ‘dun’ - fort and ‘Conan’ - a warrior with the Fianna.
From the time of Fionn MacCool and the Fianna in the 3rd century to
recent times, Duncannon has been a military defence for 17 centuries.
It became the site of a Celtic and then a Norman Fortress until 1588
when the star-shaped fort was built by the British to defend an attack
by the Spanish Armada.
1649, the Fort held out against Cromwell’s forces under General
James II sailed from here after the Battle of the Boyne 1690 and
William of Orange also
took ship here.
The Fort was referred to as
The Second Fort of the Realm.
the 1798 rebellion, the nickname Croppy Boy was given to Irish rebels,
whose cropped hair was associated with the anti-wig French
revolutionaries and the United Irishmen, making them as targets for:
interrogation, torture by flogging, picketing, half-hanging and
pitch-capping. (A cone of hot pitch/ tar was placed on the head of the
croppy, when the tar cooled; it was ripped off the head often removing
hair, skin, and ears.)
it was occupied by the militia
and in 1922, it was set alight by the old IRA and lay in ruins until
the outbreak of World War II, when it was rebuilt and occupied by the
Irish Army to be used as an observation base. It was used for summer
training until 1986 and in 1993 the Fort passed to Wexford County
Re-enactment is an annual event with displays and demonstrations from
all periods in history.