were married in Gougane Barra
On Monday 26th of September 2011
Gougane Barra Church and Forest Park are located 5km west
Ballingeary on R584 to Bantry in West Cork, at the Pass of
The name Guágan Barra derives from St. Finbar, who according
to tradition, built his monastery on the island here in the 6th century.
Guágan was at one time part of the territories of the O'Leary's
who lost possession of the land in the plantation that followed the
Subsequently it passed to the Townsend family and ultimately the farming
tenants under the Land Acts in the early part of this century. The
ruins on the island are not part of St. Finbar's original settlement
but were erected around 1700 by Rev. Denis O'Mahony who, following
the footsteps of St. Finbar, retired to a life of asceticism here.
Because of its isolation, in the days of the Penal Laws people travelled
from areas far beyond the bounds of the valley to hear Mass in Guágan
Barra. One of the most famous 'Mass Path' was that which led from
the Borlin Valley to the west via Gowlane Stream and down into Com
Rua by way of the savage cleft of Poll.
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