Upperchurch Village – A Brief History
The village of Upperchurch truly sums up what rural Ireland is all about; friendly local people willing to share their friendship and culture. This unique and quaint village nestles snugly into the rolling hills of Slieve Felim in Tipperary. In a modern day Ireland, the area has lost little of its original old natural rural charm and is surrounded by wild, beautiful, tranquil scenery. On a clear day, from the summit of the Black Hill, visitors can view five surrounding Irish counties, while pausing to wonder at this most unforgettable part of the world.
As the village name suggests, the church building today remains central to this village settlement. An earlier church structure to the present edifice (circa 1800) had been erected further south of the village by the then local parish priest, one James Clancy (1792-1812), with the cemetery evolving around the latter structure, however same church was completely demolished in 1928, following the building of the present existing Romanesque style edifice.
It is here in the heart of the Slieve Felim Hills where are to be found the earliest and the majority of Tipperary’s archaeological sites, dating back to early bronze age (2000BC) or earlier and some to the earlier Neolithic period. These sites include Wedge Tombs, Cist Graves, Ring Barrows (From Old English ‘beorg’ meaning a mound or burial place) Standing Stones and Fulacht Fiadh, (Latter name, usually found close to water sources, comes from the Irish word “Fulacht” denoting a pit used for cooking, while “Fiadh” in old Irish means “Wild” often relating to animals such as boar or deer).
Graniera and Knockcurraghbola Commons are two of these types of archaeological sites to be found near Upperchurch.
This village forms a stage of the historic Beara-Breifne Way, based on the historic winter march of Donal Cam O’Sullivan Beare in 1603. This march, carried out while also fighting a rearguard action across Ireland, was defined by enormous suffering, as the fleeing, often starving O’Sullivan followers, including women and children, moved north on a 250-mile march which was completed in 14 days. On arrival at the O’Rourke’s castle in Co Leitrim only 35 of his original estimated 1,000 followers remained.
The village well pre-dates the Anglesey road or New Line road stretching from Thurles to Upperchurch ending in Newport, which was first erected in 1828, under the supervision of the celebrated Commissioner of Valuation, Surveyor and Engineer, Sir Richard John Griffith, whose better known memorial remains his ‘Griffith’s Valuation,’ completed for Co Tipperary on June 29th 1853.
Localised Clan Names
Upper Church is part of the ancestral home of those with the surnames O’Dwyer and O’Ryan / Ryan. If visitors have known ancestors that are from Upperchurch / Drombane and the surrounding areas, help is readily available to assist in tracing both your original homestead and your genealogy, by simply telephoning or e-mailing the local Upperchurch Visitor Information Office. Tel: 00353 (0)87 6076838. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Where To Stay And Eat
Travelling To Upperchurch Area By Private & Public Transport
See Link: http://www.upperchurch.ie/getting-here/
Recommended Attractions Nearby
Cabragh Wetlands (15 kms). Clare Glens (30kms). Cormackstown Heritage Centre (15 kms). HolyCross Abbey (10 kms). Lár na Páirce GAA Museum (15kms). Rock Of Cashel (24 kms). Semple Stadium (15 kms). St Mary’s Famine & War Museum (15 kms).