Maynooth – The Coffee Mill
Image by infomatique
Maynooth is a university town in north County Kildare. It is home to a branch of the National University of Ireland, a Pontifical University and Ireland’s main Roman Catholic seminary, St Patrick’s College.
The town has, at either end of the main street, Maynooth Castle and Carton House: two former seats of the Dukes of Leinster. The castle was a stronghold of the 16th century historical figure Thomas FitzGerald, 10th Earl of Kildare better known as Silken Thomas. The castle was overrun in 1535, after the rebellion of the Earl.
The most important historical buildings in the town are those of St. Patrick’s College and some of which antedate the foundation of the college, while others are in the late Georgian and neo-Gothic revival style. The "new range" of buildings was erected by A.W.N. Pugin in 1850 under a commission from then college president Laurence F. Renehan, while the College Chapel was designed and completed by James Joseph McCarthy during the presidency of Dr. Robert Browne in 1894.
Maynooth is on the Royal Canal, navigable from central Dublin to this point, now used mostly for leisure purposes. It provided an important stopping point before Dublin in the period directly before the coming of the railways to Ireland in the first half of the 19th century. The harbour, known locally as Dukes Harbour is roughly triangular in shape and on the north side of the canal, opposite the railway station is a popular fishing area.
Maynooth railway station is one of the busiest in the Dublin / Kildare region, serving as it does two major educational institutions. The town is the terminus of most Iarnród Éireann Western Commuter trains, as well as being served by the Sligo InterCity service. Dublin Bus and Bus Éireann services also serve the town. A number of private operators also serve the town, linking it with nearby towns and cities.