The Wonderful Barn

Despite the fact that it’s only a few miles away from Maynooth (in Leixlip) I had never heard of this extraordinary building until yesterday. The Wonderful Barn (for that is its name) is known to have been built in 1743 but nobody actually knows what its purpose was. Probably the best theory is that it was designed to be used as a granary, as it was built immediately after a severe famine (in possible anticipation of others in the future), but alternative possibilities to have been suggested are a tower from which people could shoot game birds, a folly (it was built by the Conolly family, owners of Castletown House and is on the Estate which has another famous folly), and simply as a means of providing work for poor people in a time of great hardship. Anyway, it’s a weird building, built from bricks but faced with what looks like recycled stone rubble.

Here’s a short video that includes some drone footage of the Wonderful Barn that gives you an idea of its corkscrew-shaped construction.

5 Responses to “The Wonderful Barn”

  1. Amazing building. Will they let you climb it?

  2. Anton Garrett Says:

    Might I suggest a place for distilling poteen without paying any of the iniquitous taxes which such activity attracted (and attracts)?

  3. Phillip Helbig Says:

    It has a truly uncanny resemblance to the Einstein Tower.

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