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PostPosted: Sat Apr 16, 2016 12:13 pm 
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Joined: Thu Dec 04, 2008 11:50 am
Posts: 57
Remarkable character dead.

A Kilrush correspondent says the death this week in the Kilrush Hospital of a remarkable old lady, with the peculiar cognomen of "Biddy Belfast," removes a figure that during life gained some notoriety in West Clare, by reason of the extraordinary dwelling-place she selected and occupied for a number of years. Her home was a deep recess or burrow-like chamber between two arches of the bridge in the ancient village of Doonbeg. Ingress and egress to it was made possible by a rude little embankment, on either side of which the stream swirled as it rushed its course. There was at all times an element of danger in the approach to this unusual type of habitation. The woman and her cave was the chief curiosity of the village, and attracted much attention from the stranger and the tourist. It may be mentioned that at Doonbeg also there still dwells an extraordinary old woman, Biddy Thunder, as she is styled locally, who lives high up in the tower of a ruined castle facing the Atlantic.

"Clare Journal," 21 December 1903


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 29, 2017 4:32 am 
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Joined: Mon Dec 06, 2010 12:36 am
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This is the same cavity under / between the westernmost arches of the Doonbeg Bridge as were used during An Gorta Mor / Great Potato Famine Dec 1849 by an evicted, starving woman & her sickly children. A London newspaper columnist made her a feature article in the ILN = Illustrated London News or Independent London News? To avoid trespassing on private land beside the northwest end of the bridge, a ladder gave direct access down from the bridge to a rectangular access hatch left in the north edge during its historic construction.


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