Cliffs of Moher, Co Clare
Lahinch Convent, Co Clare
The Sisters of Mercy came to Station Road, Lahinch, on the first Friday of September 1998. They left Ennistymon in rather dramatic circumstances. The convent there was hit by lightning on October 15th 1996.-Because of the damage caused, the sisters were advised to look for accommodation and leave the convent. The convent was vacated on November 1st, 1996. There were nine sisters in Ennistymon at that time. The sisters were in rented accommodation until the house on Station Road came on the market.
Once the sisters left Ennistymon until they were finally settled in Lahinch they got help and support from many people. The help of the local people was greatly appreciated at such a difficult time.
Our house in Lahinch marks the southern boundary of the Mercy Western Province. When the sisters came to Lahinch, the convent was surrounded by green fields except on the Lahinch side. Since then, two housing estates, with 25 houses each and one housing estate with 56 houses were built on green field sites. In addition to that, planning permission was granted, in a field opposite the convent, for over 100 houses and apartments, just before the economic downturn. Luckily, the building project was not started and then left unfinished, like so many other building projects around the country.
The boundary wall to the south of the convent is built where the West Clare railway line once stood. This provides a link with the Ennistymon Convent as the same railway line ran to the south of the convent. In days past when the sisters in Ennistymon wanted to take the train, they sent word to the Station Master and he ordered the driver to pick them up outside the convent!
The convent is within walking distance of the village. Lahinch is famous as a holiday resort for golfers, walkers, swimmers and for surfing competitions in recent times. To add to this, it is close to the world famous Cliffs of Moher and its new centre, which was opened in 2007 and cost of 32 million.