Ref: K135

Great Connell Abbey

Townland: Greatconnell Parish: Newbridge (Greatconnell)
Denomination: RC Diocese: Kildare and Leighlin (RC) 
Grid Ref: 281829(E), 214131(N) Status: Closed
Record of Protected Structures (RPS): B23-08 Record of Monuments and Places (RMP): KD023-016001 - graveyard
Boundary Treatment: Rough coursed stone wall, 1.5-2m high
Natural Heritage Details: 5-10 mature and 1-5 young trees dispersed throughout; brambles dispersed throughout; lichens visible on all gravestones; ivy on boundary walls, priory walls and ground surface.
Description: The site is located in a wooded rural area . It is located on the site of a ruined abbey though the only upstanding remains of this are one wall that forms part of the eastern boundary of the graveyard. It is difficult to determine whether this would have been the eastern or western wall of the abbey building. The graveyard is marked on both the 1st edition OS 6" map and the 1897-1913 OS 25" map. The abbey is already described as being in ruins on the 1st edition map. The graveyard is entered through an arched gateway in the middle of the western boundary wall. The ground level within the enclosure is higher than outside. The ground surface is somewhat overgrown, but headstones are clearly visible. There are no structures or paths within the graveyard. Table tombs and slabs account for approximately 105 of the grave markers. Most gravestones are 19th century, though there are a few 20th century examples.
Appraisal: The site is of considerable archaeological, architectural and historic interest, attesting to the long-standing ecclesiastical presence in the area. The remains of the friary consist of an E gable with buttressed walls and the NE corner of the church. The friary was founded in 1202 and most of it were demolished in the early 19th century. The graveyard contains various cut-stone grave markers from the 19th-20th centuries, which are of artistic and historic interest.
Record Of Inscriptions: Recorded by: Headland Archaeology (partial survey)
Location: County Archive, Newbridge

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