Ref: K050

St. Michael's

Townland: Athy Parish: Athy
Denomination: Mixed Diocese: Dublin (RC) 
Grid Ref: 268854(E), 194076(N) Status: Open
Record of Protected Structures (RPS): No Record of Monuments and Places (RMP): KD035-022015
Boundary Treatment: Rough coursed stone wall; metal fence to the west. Boundaries are 1.5-2m high
Natural Heritage Details: 100+ trees dispersed throughout; church ruins overgrown with brambles; full coverage by mown grass except for paths; lichens visible on 80% of headstones; ivy on church ruins, trees, boundaries and some headstones.
Description: The site is located on the east side of the town of Athy. The graveyard is marked on both the 1st edition OS 6" map and the 1897-1913 OS 25" map. The associated church is described as being in ruins on both maps. The site is accessed directly from the N78 via a gate in the middle of the southern boundary. The enclosed area is well served by paths, but the ground surface off the paths is very overgrown and uneven. The SE quadrant, of which the church occupies the NW corner is higher than the surrounding area. A retaining wall is visible running N-S west of the church. This was presumably the original boundary of the site which has now extended greatly to the north and west. The newest graves are in the NW quadrant. This area is a little less overgrown, but the grass is still high except around selected graves. Legible gravestones date from 18th-20th century. Table tombs and slabs are present in small numbers. 19th and 20th century gravestones are present within the church.
Appraisal: The site is of considerable archaeological, architectural and historic interest, attesting to the long-standing ecclesiastical presence in the area. No visible remains of the medieval church survives. Features of note are a limestone ashlar recessed entrance with pyramidal capped cruciform piers and wrought-iron gates. The boundary walls are upstanding and only a little overgrown. Gravestones are in variable condition. Some are upstanding and straight, others are worn or badly damaged.
Record Of Inscriptions: Recorded by: FAS
Location: Co. Kildare Online Electronic History Journal

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