Well, well St. Patrick!

For the weekend that’s in it, below are the two holy well sites associated with St. Patrick in the Blackstairs Mountains townlands.

St Patricks Wells

“St. Patrick’s Well”, Templeludigan, Wexford

St Patrick’s Well, Templeludigan

Located close to the centre of a tillage field in the south-eastern foothills of the range, this site is currently in a poor condition. A hawthorn tree which previously grew on the site has fallen over and the site is currently presented as a slightly overgrown mound of grass and stones. It is marked as “St Patrick’s Well” on the two editions of the Ordnance Survey Historic Maps which are available online

St Patricks Well Templeludigan 6inchSt Patricks Well Templeludigan 25inch

The Sites and Monuments Record describes it as: “A passage with a few steps… which is a corbelled and lintelled drystone walled structure (diam. 1m) with another well structure (diam. c. 1m) off it to the N. The well is often dry, but retains water in winter. According to John O’Donovan writing c. 1840 the pattern was held on March 17th until c. 1820 (O’Flanagan 1933, vol. 2, 346). There is no evidence of veneration”

St. Patrick’s Well, Kiltealy, Wexford

Former location of well site with the Blackstairs Mountains shrouded in cloud behind

Located on the left hand side of the road on the southern approach to Kiltealy Village. No traces of this site survive today however, it is marked on the 25″ edition Historic Map as “St Patrick’s Well”. A well is also marked on the first edition OS maps from 1839, albeit unlabelled or named. A stream is located  c.3om to the West at the base of the sloping field.

St Patricks Well Kiltealy 6inchSt Patricks Well Kiltealy 25inch

The Sites and Monuments Record states that: “It is listed by Ua Dubhgaill (1925, 94), but the well does not survive and there is no evidence that it was ever venerated”

The sites name and association is preserved locally today in a nearby house name.

For more in depth information on Saint Patrick himself check out the entertaining and informative blog Vox Hiberionacum 

And for information on pilgrimage and holy well veneration from the medieval period to the present day see Pilgrimage in Medieval Ireland