In 1765 the ship, the Earl of Sandwich departed Tenerife for England
with a cargo of 250 sacks of Spanish gold. During the stormy voyage,
the ship was swept back towards the Irish coastline, where the crew
threw the captain, mate and passengers overboard. The mutineers then
launched the ship’s boat, loaded the cargo, opened the ship’s ballast
doors and allowed the ship half sink and capsize, leaving the cabin
The crew rowed up the estuary, landing at Dollar Bay, where they
buried the gold for safe keeping, sharing some amongst themselves.
They then continued up river until Fisherman’s Quay near New Ross
where they spent the night at an inn. They continued to New Ross,
where they also stayed and bought 6 horses and hired 2 guides to take
them to Dublin.
the half sunk ship was blown ashore at Sheep’s Island near Tramore.
The cabin boy relayed the tale to local police, who traced stories of
4 men spending Spanish gold at Fisherman’s Quay, New Ross and at the
Black Bull Inn in Dublin; the 4 mutineers were arrested. They were
hung at St.
Stephen’s Green and displayed at Dublin port to warn other
sailors against mutiny.
Although Dollar Bay was searched, most of the gold was never found and
still lies buried under the sand.
In 1645, 1500 Irish Royalists besieged Cromwell’s Parliamentarian
garrison of 200 in Duncannon Fort. The Great Lewis, and three other
ships were sent to recapture the fort. The Royalists fired at the
fleet and while three ships escaped, the Great Lweis was hindered by a
combination of heavy cannon fire, high tides and winds
With her masts shot down she drifted into shallow water and sank, with
most of her crew and 200 soldiers still on board. For 400 years she
lay lost until 1999, when the wreck was rediscovered whilst dredging
the navigational channel
Originally built in 1350 by the Redmond family and rebuilt by the
Marquis of Ely, the austere mansion sits on Hook peninsula,
overlooking the estuary. Loftus Hall was the site of Irish
Confederate battles, a refuge for shipwreck victims and travellers,
was a hotel for a time, and following a long desertion, has now been
redeveloped as a characterful amenity on Hook Peninsula.
On a wintery evening, a stranger called to the mansion and was made
welcome to stay. One night when they were playing cards, a card was
dropped on the floor, and when the niece Ann Tottenham went to pick it
up, she noticed that the young man had a hoof in place of a foot. Ann
screamed and the man went up through the roof in a puff of smoke,
leaving behind a large hole in the ceiling. Ann went into shock;
staying in her tapestry room and refusing food and drink, she died in
1775. Rumour has it that the hole in the roof could never be properly
repaired. A local priest performed an exorcism in the house. His
gravestone reads: Here lies the body of Fr. Thomas Broaders, who did
good and prayed for all, and who banished the devil from Loftus Hall.
Hook Head Lighthouse
lighthouse is the oldest operating lighthouse in Europe. The light
has been ma intained
for 1,500 years from the first beacon
lit by Welsh monk Dubhan in the 5th century
the development in the early 13th century by William Marshal, Earl of
Pembrokeshire as a navigational aid to guide his ships into Waterford
Harbour. The freestanding, cylindrical stone keeps are known as
Juliets; similar to Marshal castles at Ferns, Kilkenny and Pembroke.
The 36.6m high tower and consists of a 13m-tier with three vaulted
ceilings each with an original fireplace and an upper 6.3m-tier with
115 steps to the parapet.
fire beacon was replaced by a gas-lit lamp from 1871 and by
electricity in 1972. Before the operation was transferred to an
automated system in 1996, 3 keepers manned the lighthouse.
lighthouse keepers' houses have been converted to an audio-visual
room; café and craft shop with a conservatory linking the two houses.
Guided tours supported by multi-lingual literature are provided on
site and many events and festivals run throughout the year www.hookheritage.ie
the head of a small inlet beside a quiet river, stands Tintern Abbey,
Cistercian abbey, founded c. 1200 by William, the Earl Marshall, and
colonised by monks from Tintern Abbey in Wales.
VIII, it became the property of the Colclough family, who converted it
into living quarters and occupied the house from 1543 until 1973. The
remains consist of a nave, chancel, tower, chapel and cloister.
The Abbey is set in a beautiful woodland area and the Coclough Walled
Gardens have been recently renovated.
the corner from Hook Head, lies Bannow Bay, a wealth of natural and
cultural heritage. In 1160, the first Normans landed here. The
buried city of Clonmines was a
Norman (& Viking)
town but abandoned in the 1600s when
shifting sands blocked its port and erosion threatened the town. Up to
1800, the town was represented by 2 MPs. The Norman church survives.
A coastal path continues on to Cullenstown strand and eventually