The Parish of Brackenstown hosted an exhibition titled “Early Christian Swords” in St Cronan’s Pastoral Centre from 14th to 27th April 2018.
The Swords area is steeped in history and it was an important centre for Christianity in the early days of the Irish Church. Swords is probably best known historically as the resting place of Brian Boru following his death at the Battle of Clontarf in 1014. His body lay overnight in the church at Swords and later proceeded to Armagh where the High King was buried.
The exhibition featured displays on St Colmcille’s Monastery, Glasmore Abbey/The Nunnery, and the local Holy Wells of St Colmcille, St Cronan and St Werburgh. The exhibition also featured information on recent important archaeological findings in the Swords area. These included the discovery in 2003 of a previously unknown cemetery at Mount Gamble. This cemetery was in use from the arrival of Christianity in circa AD 550 until 1150.
There were also displays on the recently rediscovered Ecclesiastical complex in the Mooretown/Oldtown area, on either side of the Rathbeale Road. Since 2010 Fingal County Council has had a Conservation and Management Plan in place for this area. The plans include the establishment of four archaeological parks to preserve the historical sites.
We wish to thank Courtney Deery Heritage Consultancy who carried out the design and editorial for the exhibition. We would also like to thank Fingal County Council and Creave Ireland for their generous grant of €1,500. We are also thankful to Gannon Homes for their kind donation of €2,000 towards the cost of the exhibition.