28th Annual Rally July 2017 – Sunday
Sunday morning dawned bright and sunny so hoods were quickly dismantled.
Thomas Connor outlined the route for the day which on this occasion was heading northwards where we would experience rural County Mayo, its lakes, hills and sales with a stop off at Newport for morning refreshments.
After our drivers briefing we set off in a northerly direction to Newport beside Lough Beltra, one of Ireland’s most beautiful lakes, surrounded by mountains on all sides. Newport has a disused railway viaduct crossing the river which, together with the Catholic church on top of the hill, dominate the town. St. Patrick’s Church was built in 1914 in the Irish Romanesque Revival style by Rudolph M. Butler.
It has a stained glass east window of the Last Judgment, the last window completed by Harry Clarke in 1930. Burrishoole Friary and Grace O’Malley‘s Rockfleet Castle are both just to the west of the town. The town is a angling and tourist centre. Coffee stop was welcomed.
There we met Michael Healy whose grandfather was a Ford Dealer in the town and continues to operate a garage in the same premises in front of which many Model Ts were parked, just like it was 100 years ago.
Turlough Park House
Following a coffee break we drove on to Castlebar and onwards to Turlough Park House and the Museum of Irish Life. This is a truly fascinating place and well worth a visit to see how we have progressed from famine times to the present day.
We also paid a visit to the restaurant where we partook of delicious salads, rolls and scones. Many of us enjoyed our snacks in the sunny courtyard.
After this most enjoyable visit, it was time to head on our return journey to Hotel Westport where some of our friends had Sunday lunch before returning home.
Our thanks to Thomas Connor who hosted this West of Ireland tour. Thanks to the efficient stewards who ensured we took the correct roads.
Special mention to our Tailend Charlie John Hayes. The standard of our cars is high, thanks to the loving care owners bestow on them and so John was free of pick ups, apart from one T where it was advisable to curtail activities because of water egress. On a humorous note, it was thought that if John, a noted horse breeder, was in position with his hobby, he would have won the cup, for he was first across the finishing line in Newport!
Our thanks to management and staff of Hotel Westport and special mention to Rhona who looked after us so well.
A big thank you to all the members to came to the run in such numbers, all combining to make it such a wonderful weekend.
Before We Sign Off…
Westport is a special place. A town in the west of Ireland through sheer teamwork amongst its citizens has built up a place of interest and welcome for any visitor. We strongly recommend this destination where you will have a great time… just like us.
LAST WORD – we agree Westport is the best place to live in Ireland.