Martello Tower – Graffiti
Image by infomatique
I entered this park from the entrance near Blackrock shopping centre and I must admit that I was shocked by the condition of the park, it is now a prime example of the urban decay that is currently taking place here in Ireland and sadly things are likely to get worse over the next few years now that the country is broke and there will be no money to pay public servants.
I searched the web to see if anyone else had the same opinion about the current state of the park and I came across the following site:
Blackrock had a beach that was a popular bathing place until the construction of the railway close to the shoreline. The space between the shore and the railway created an area that flooded with sea water at high tide. This created a malodorous salty marsh similar to that at Booterstown marsh. This marsh was a cause of local discomfort for years until it was decided by the Blackrock Town Commissioners (established in 1860) to fill the area in and create a park. The park, which stretches from Blackrock to Booterstown (encompassing Williamstown), was created in the early 1870s. The granite gates at the main entrance once belonged to a house called Vauxhall. The gardens at the entrance were part of the gardens of the old house.
The Williamstown Martello Tower, located in Blackrock Park, was built between 1804-1806. When the tower was built, it would have been surrounded by sea water at high tide as it was built in the inter-tidal beach area. The tower became isolated from the sea when the construction of the railway took place, but sea water still flowed into the area at high tide. It wasn’t until the filling in of the area to form the Blackrock Park that the tower was to be on dry land. That part of the tower which is visible today is actually the first floor as the ground floor is buried underground.
In 2007, Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council published plans for the conservation and development of the park The plans include extensive redevelopment of the course of the Priory River, as well as refurbishment of several of the buildings within the park. As of 2010, no work has been carried out as part of the redevelopment masterplan, with work expected to commence in 2011.