Chapter 2-Day 11-Derry to Sligo

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August 13th 2011
Published: August 13th 2011
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Belleek PotteryBelleek PotteryBelleek Pottery

One of the Belleek craftsman hand painting a piece

The pace of the tour since we have been in Ireland has slowed down a bit. The weather is still a mixture of rain and overcast conditions. In Scotland the temperature ranged between 9-15 degrees, its definitely warmer here, despite the unsettled weather it would be high teens/low twenties (no wonder they are the emerald isles).

We left Derry at 10.15am, before leaving we had a bit of a walk to the shopping centre to pick up a few things. Everything was quiet but there was a strong police presence around town. On the way out of town we also saw police on almost every corner.

We travelled from Northern to Southern Ireland as we headed to Donegal – there were yellow and green Donegal flags everywhere - supporting their All Ireland Football team that will play Dublin in the semi final of their national championship next weekend – the colours are in shops, attached to letter boxes, out of windows etc.
We had to make the adjustment from Pounds to Euros, miles to kms etc. It’s just over the river but the fundamentals are quite different.
It was immediately noticeable that the roads In
Mountbatton EstateMountbatton EstateMountbatton Estate

The gateway to the Mountbatton Estate
Southern Ireland aren’t as good as in the north. Southern Ireland has a massive debt and is basically insolvent; when they joined the EU they took out huge loans to improve many aspects of their infrastructure and stimulate their economy, now they are paying the price.
Donegal is a pretty town, we did some shopping, got some Euros (pounds no good here). Had another nice pub lunch and then headed back to Northern Ireland (just) to go to the Belleek Pottery Factory – a long established and quite famous brand.

We had a tour through the Belleek factory and had the opportunity to see how the pottery was made. they are hand crafted and painted. We were able to see the craftsmen working on individual pieces in the factory which gave us a good insight into just how skilled they are. It is fine white china, not everyone’s cup of tea but I thought it looked quite good (Jeanette not so much so we didn’t buy anything).

Then it was back into Southern Ireland, we visited the village of Mullaghmore, it is where Lord Mountbatten was murdered by the IRA in 1979. His boat

An interesting statue in front of the church where Yeats is burried
was blown up as it left the harbour, one of his grandsons (14) and the local boy who was looking after the boat (15) were also killed. The Mountbatten family have a castle Cassiebawn House on the edge of the village; we stopped for a photo opportunity of the castle.
We also visited the church where the famous wordsmith Yeats was buried before heading to Sligo and the Radisson Hotel for the night. The Hotel is out of the main town but very nice, we are dining in the hotel tonight so should be a good evening mixing with others on the tour.
We have just heard that things have kicked off in Derry with masked youths throwing petrol bombs at police; it was a good decision by insight to move us out early! It sounds like the incidents are relatively isolated which is good, the police we encountered around town were really friendly – we got lots of friendly waves from them as we left town.


13th August 2011

Kia ora
Hi guys, I love reading your blog. I'm so pleased you are having a great time. Enjoy. Love Donna and co x x
10th September 2013

Appreciate your efforts
Good Post. I really enjoyed to visit your post. I have read your post and got a good stuff of Belleek Pottery. Thanks for sharing.
11th September 2013

Hi John. Thanks for your feedback, pleased you enjoyed the post and found it useful.

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