About the Irish Walled Towns Network

 

Founded in 2005, the Irish Walled Towns Network is funded by the Heritage Council and delivered in partnership with local authorities and community groups across the island of Ireland. There are currently 32 member towns in the network. These are:

Athenry, Co. Galway – Athlone, Co. Westmeath – Athy, Co. Kildare – Bandon, Co. Cork – Buttevant, Co. Cork – Carlingford, Co. Louth – Carrickfergus, Co. Antrim – Carrick on Suir, Co. Tipperary – Cashel, Co. Tipperary – Castledermot, Co. Kildare – Clonmel, Co. Tipperary – Cork City – Derry, Co. Londonderry – Drogheda, Co. Louth – Dublin City – Fethard, Co. Tipperary – Fore, Co. Westmeath – Galway City – Kells, Co. Meath – Kildare Town, Co. Kildare – Kilkenny City – Kilmallock, Co. Limerick – Limerick City – Loughrea, Co. Galway – Naas, Co. Kildare – Navan, Co. Meath – New Ross, Co. Wexford – Rindoon, Co. Roscommon – Trim, Co. Meath – Waterford City – Wexford Town, Co. Wexford – Youghal, Co. Cork.

Read more about our member towns here

The role of the Irish Walled Towns Network (IWTN) is to unite and co-ordinate the strategic efforts of local authorities and community groups involved in the management, conservation and enhancement of historic walled towns in Ireland, both North and South, helping to make Ireland’s walled towns great places in which to live, work and visit.

Guidance and assistance is provided to member towns by providing grants for town wall conservation and for community festivals and heritage interpretation. Training is delivered to community groups on how best to use their town’s heritage for the benefit of those who live there and user friendly advisory documents are researched and published. More information about those documents and other IWTN projects can be found here: https://www.heritagecouncil.ie/projects/irish-walled-towns-network

Membership is open to towns that have surviving town walls and/or strong documentary evidence for having been walled in the past. Eligibility is based on established research, as carried out by Avril Thomas and published in The Walled Towns of Ireland (1992).

For more on membership see here.

Since 2005 over €9 million in funding has been disbursed to member towns through the IWTN’s two annual grants schemes.

The Heritage Council is a public body working in the public interest. Ian Doyle, Head of Conservation, The Heritage Council, oversees the management of the IWTN. The network is currently project-managed by Eimear O’Connell of Eimear O’Connell Heritage Ltd. on behalf of the Heritage Council.

The IWTN is governed by a Management Committee, which includes representatives from the Heritage Council; the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage; the Historic Environment Division of the Department for Communities, Northern Ireland; and representatives of four member towns, at least one of which must be in Northern Ireland. The Chair of the Management Committee is appointed by the Heritage Council. The Deputy Chairperson is a member town representative.

The IWTN’s Strategy 2024-2028 is available to read or download here