Church Hill, Achonry

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Feature Sets (2)


Only the W end of the church and a short section of the adjacent N and S walls still stand. A rectangular splayed window, probably late medieval, survives in the S wall and this incorporates a 12thc. voussoir. The ruin is on a small hill and stands a few metres NE of a souterrain.


Gwynn and Hadcock record that there was an early Irish monastery at Achonry, founded in the 7thc. by St Finian of Clonard. However, this does not refer to Church Hill, but to another site in Achonry which is now dominated by a modern cathedral. A loose stone carved with a 12thc. beast head was discovered there in 2003.


Interior Features

Interior Decoration


Reset voussoir, S window

h. 0.20 m
w. at bottom 0.15 m
w. at top 0.18 m

A voussoir from a 12thc. arch has been reused as part of the masonry of the left splay. The voussoir is shallow-carved with a row of beading, followed by a row of zig-zag with beads in the triangles, and then a band of cable moulding. Of coarse red sandstone.


The fragment may have been from an earlier structure on the site. No other 12thc. material is visible. The site is very overgrown and the surrounding field was  used for cattle and horses a the time of visiting.


  • A. Gwynn and R.N. Hadcock, Medieval Religious Houses in Ireland. London 1970, 28, 58, 60. (no reference to Church Hill)


Site Location
National Grid Reference
G 60 14 
medieval: Sligo
now: Sligo
medieval: unknown
now: Church Hill
Type of building/monument
Church (ruin)  
Report authors
Hazel Gardiner