So winter has arrived but that doesn’t mean things get quiet for us here in Enniscorthy and in Wexford. There are lots of private bookings for The Bailey so it will be a busy month for us here but that is not a complaint from us. Thanks to all our great customers and the people of Enniscorthy who ensure we are kept on our toes! Not to frighten you but its only 6 weeks to Christmas, although we are sure you are well aware as many shops are already decorated and piping through the Christmas music. We are focusing on Christmas ourselves here as we are taking bookings daily for our Christmas party nights which this year will take place on Friday the 8th&15th and Saturday the 9th&16th of December, a great night of entertainment in our Winter Wonderland themed room, delicious festive meal and live DJ to fill the dancefloor.

We also have a lot of interest in our private dinning options where we offer a range of menus from €20-€25 with a choice of venues, perfect for a work break up, family get-together, or catch up with friends.

But enough of the Christmas talk for now, there are still some cool things to do in Wexford that don’t involve chubby bearded men in white suit or giddy little elves.

For those with an interest in medieval life and war fare, or fans of programs like Vikings or Game of Thrones, in The National Heritage Centre in Ferrycarrig, there is a Two Day Arrow and Archery Accessories Course on the 11th & 12th November. You will learn ancient archery techniques such as making your own , heads, arrow shafts and fletching’s, using techniques and materials spanning from the stone-age and up, with the use of primitive glues. Making an armguard, finger tab and quiver will also be instructed on this course with all materials and hand tools supplied.

If you are not interested in this course there is plenty of other activities in The National Heritage Centre.  This outdoor museum depicts 9000 years of life in Ireland, from the first arrival of man to the island, to early Christian time’s right up to the time of invasion in the 1200s. Set over 35 acres the park has 16 archaeological and historical site reconstructions all of which are set in their own natural environment reflective of ancient Irish life exactly as it would have been. You can take an audio tour where every site and the history of the time it represents is explained to you.  If you want an even more immersive experience you can stay in a Ringfort over night! With stone walls, a thatch roof and open hearth in the centre, cook on an open fire, dress in the clothes of the period and live like the ancient people of Ireland for a day or two. For more information on the park, the archery course and the overnight stays see here.

While the heritage centre focuses on the time of ancient Ireland up to the invasions, Wexford itself is a hotbed of Norman history. Invited by ousted King of Leinster Diarmuid McMurrough to help regain his throne, The Normans arrived in Wexford in 1169 and their mark on landscape can still be seen today. The Norman Way is a defined route throughout Wexford where people can visit landmarks such as castles, churches, and villages left by the Normans in the early part of the second millennium. From ladies Island in the east to Kilmore quay, to the Hook Head peninsula and on to New Ross in the west there are many sites of interest, 11 of which have been furnished with bike racks and interpretive panels, explaining what the sites were used for and the historical and cultural significance of them to the local area, they are Ladys Island, St Iberius Church, Tacumshane Windmill, St Catherines Church, Sigginstown Castle, Ballyhealy Castle, Grange Church, Ishartmon Church, Tomhaggard village, Kilmore Quay and St Marys Church.  But there are many many more sites on the route that are well worth a visit and are fantastic insights into the architecture, culture and way of life for The Normans and for Norman Ireland. If you are you want to follow the route there is a Norman helmet icon on the road signs along the route that guide you how to get to each site and monument. (See image below)

So that’s it for another month, we hope you enjoy exploring historical Wexford and Ireland. Be sure to let us know how you get on if you take a trip to the heritage centre or a road trip through Norman Wexford by leaving a comment in the box below.