A few weeks ago I bumped into Wendy Graham Hanna [The Penny Well on Instagram] at the Green Holiday Cottages in Kilkeel for a Mourne Wall experience. We had a fabulous day filled with interesting stories, an opportunity to get hands on with Mourne Granite and (my very favourite part) actually try lifting rocks with a digger!!!
Wendy has a lovely way with words and here's how she describes our day:
After a miserably long winter, it didn’t take much persuasion to get outside (albeit with more layers than an onion) and into the great outdoors. There’s a bounty of beauty spots in the Kingdom Of Mourne and a mountain of outdoor pursuits to choose from but it’s not often you get the chance to step into the world of Dry Stone Walling.
After a hearty welcome by hosts Jenny & Mark, we wandered around the beautifully restored Mill buildings, learning about local history and stories of the stone along the way.
The stone walls or ditches as they are known locally, are around every turn in the Mourne countryside, with many being in place for decades, thanks to the trusty techniques of the stone men.
An amble through the woodland uncovered tales and traditions associated with the local flora and fauna, and a few pleasant surprises along the way.
With red being the dominant colour in the gateways of Mourne, it was fitting to see one adorning the new bridge. This led us over Kilkeel River where we got to grips with the famed Mourne Granite and tried our hand at the age-old art of dry-stone walling.
It was an insightful morning spent stepping back in time and exploring a tradition steeped in history and still used today. An all-round excellent experience, perfect for both locals and visitors alike, topped off with a good old cup of tea and boiled cake, the way it used to be!
Tickets are available now for the next stone wall experience: https://greenholidaycottages.com/promotions
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