Turtle Bunbury

Writer and Historian

 
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THE DOCKLANDS - PLACE NAMES IN EAST WALL

 

'Dublin Docklands - An Urban Voyage (2008).

Road Names

West Road, East Road and Church Road – The three main arteries of the East Wall, dating to the mid 18th century. Church Road once linked with Seville Place in North Wall and appears to have been named for a church, planned but never built. An air raid bunker off Church Road is said to have been connected by a tunnel to O'Connell Street but was filled in a few years ago.

East Wall Road – Named for the first enclosing wall built in the early 18th century in order to reclaim the mud flats of the North Strand upon which East Wall now stands. The older generation also called this Wharf Road after a bather’s slip constructed in the 18th century, now under reclaimed land.

North Strand Road – This road marks part of the original coastline that ran from close to the Abbey Theatre up Amiens Street and Ballybough Road to the Luke Kelly Bridge and onwards to Fairview. The street was created after the Ballast Office built the North Wall in the early 1700s.

Coburg Place – Built in 1817 and named for the capital of the Duchy of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha in Bavaria into which the luckless Princess Charlotte, only child of George IV, was married in 1816. Queen Victoria’s husband and her mother both descended from this same family.

Stoney Road – Named for Dr Bindon Blood Stoney, engineer-in-chief to the Port and Docks Board, who lived in Fir House on Church Road.

Bargy Road – Many streets in the East Wall were named in honour of the United Irishmen’s 1798 rebellion in Wexford. This road is named after the barony of Bargy in Wexford and was built in 1932. Others Wexford baronies in the East Wall are recalled by Shelmalier Road and Forth Road, while Killan Road and Boolavogue Avenue are named after revolutionary hotspots in Wexford.

Ossory Road – Possibly named for the diocese of Ossory, of which Commissioner Beresford’s brother became Bishop in 1789. It is now home to the Crosbie’s Yard apartments, designed by Scott Tallon Walker and built by Sisk.

Forth Road – Probably named after the barony in Wexford although a Miss Forth owned land here prior to 1815.

Moyelta Road – Named for the burial place of Partholón who traditionally led his people into Ireland after the Great Flood. The word is a play on Sheanmháigh Ealta Eadair, referring to the plain that runs north and north-east from Dublin upon which the birds of Ireland once basked.

Strangford Road – Along with St Barnabas Gardens and Strangford Gardens, these were built by the Rev DH Hall's pioneering building society.

Caledon Road – Some suggest this was simply named by former residents of Caledon, Co Armagh, who had moved to the East Wall to work with the Great Northern Railway.

Ravensdale Street – Named after the town of Ravensdale on the Cooley Peninsula in County Louth.

Abercorn Street – Named for James Hamilton, 1st Duke of Abercorn, Lord Lieutenant of Ireland from 1866–1868 and 1874–1876. He was also Grand Master of the Freemasons of Ireland from 1874 until his death.

Newcomen Avenue – Named for controversial banker Sir William Gleadowe Newcomen, one of the directors of the Royal Canal Company in 1791 and former owner of Carriglass Manor in County Longford.

Blythe Avenue - Possibly named for Ernest Blythe, Minister for Finance in President W. T. Cosgrave's first government and later managing director of the Abbey Theatre. As a young man, he joined St Laurence O'Toole GAA and was a friend of Sean O'Casey.

Teeling Way - Named for the late Joe Teeling, founder of the Amateur Sports Karate Organization and the East Wall Water Sports Club at East Point Bridge. He was also one of the key players in the construction of the Dyflin, a replica Viking long ship.

Five Lamps - Named for an ornamental lamp-lit drinking fountain built in memory of Galway born General Henry Hall, CB, of the Indian Army.

Alfie Byrne Road – Named after the popular Irish nationalist politican, known variously as the ‘Children’s Lord Mayor’ and the ‘Shaking Hand of Dublin’.

Merchant's Road - Built by the Merchant Warehousing Company in 1980 to house its own workforce. During the 1913 Lock Out, the company evicted some residents who refused to sign the decleration.

Johnny Cullen’s Hill - Named for Johnny Cullen’s dairy which stood at the foot of the hill.

The Smoothing Iron – Named for a large granite stone at the ‘slip’ on East Wall (Wharf) Road, once used for berthing ferriess to Clontarf Island. It was also a popular diving board in the early 20th century.

Russell Avenue - Unknown at present, the street features on the 1911 Census and includes a small row of artisan cottages. The houses here were built by Dublin Corporation in the 1930s.

Seaview Avenue – Named for its fine view of the Irish Sea at the time.

Fairfield Avenue– Named for the Fairfield Shipyard in Glasgow. The original buildngs, still called the Scotch Buildings, were built for the Glaswegian workers who came to work in Dublin during the early 19th century.

St Mary’s Road– Unknown at present.

Hawthorn Terrace– Unknown at present. In the 1880s, Hawthorn Terrace was populated by Ships Captains, Bottle Blowers and Mechanics, employed in factories nearby. Amongst these was the family of young Sean O'Casey.

Malachi Place - Probably named for High King Malachy II, elder brother of Brian Boru. The 19th century poet Thomas Caulfield Irwin once lived here.

The Bridges

Annesley Bridge – Originally built in 1797 and named after the Hon. Richard Annesley, sometime Commissioner of Irish Excise (1786 – 1795), Irish Customs (1802 – 1806) and director of the Royal Canal Company. His wife was a sister of Commisioner Beresford. He succeeded his brother as 2nd Earl Annelsey in 1802. The present bridge dates to 1926.

John McCormack Bridge - Situated on the Alfie Byrne Road, this twin-spanned concrete reinforced structure crosses the River Tolka right at the point where it enters Dublin Bay near East Wall Road. It was named after the great Irish tenor on the occasion of his centenary in 1984.

Luke Kelly Bridge (Ballybough Bridge) – At Tony Gregory’s suggestion, the Ballybough Bridge was renamed the Luke Kelly Bridge after the legendary folk musician and founding member of The Dubliners.

With thanks to Joe Mooney, Marcel Lindsay, Nicola Cooke and others.

 

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