Bulfin Heritage Cycle Rally 2021

Bulfin Heritage Cycle Back On The Road.

After much deliberation, which included changing our minds on several occasions over the course of the last few months; our committee have finally decided to hold a much-reduced Bulfin Heritage Cycle this year.
 
In terms of the event, the following has been decided: The Bulfin Heritage Cycle Rally will be held on Saturday August 21st, as part of our National Heritage Week of events.
 
The event will be for One Day only, as opposed to our usual two days, and will be 100% outdoors.
Unfortunately, with all  things considered, in relation to the ongoing Covid-19 situation, this year’s heritage cycle will be confined to just 20 cyclists. These will be accommodated on a first-come, first-served basis.
We do realise that this may lead to disappointment for some, as our events have been so well attended in the past. This is always greatly appreciated, and we truly would love to accommodate everyone, but unfortunately it is outside our control.
 
In the event of numbers over and above our quota, a waiting list will apply. Next year, like everyone else we hope for a return to normality, and a fully fledged Bulfin Heritage Cycle!
 
The cost for this all-inclusive event is €60 per cyclist.
On the road in 2019

Event Ethos

In keeping with the ethos of the event, the use of High Nelly bikes or their modern  equivalent is encouraged. Also, as in other years, the wearing of vintage costume attire is expected.
 
It is important to point out that our decisions are based on public health issues, at this time and these (public health issues) will determine our decisions as we move forward towards our event date.
Therefore, we do hope that you will have an understanding of our position in the matter of any disappointments experienced, in relation to your participation in our event this year.
Also the Draft Itinerary of our event may be subject to change as we proceed with detailed arrangements.
You can register your interest to participate in this year’s Bulfin Heritage Cycle Rally,  by emailing durrow.doings@gmail.comor by phone on 086 869 4691.
Group of vintage Bikes outside St. Fintans Well in Co. Laois
Bulfin bikes outside St. Fintan's Well, Co. Laois
Ready to hit the road in 2019
Mary Bulfin at the 2019 event! (Wm. Bulfin's descendant)
Meandering Monks & Medieval Miles in 2019
Group of vintage cyclists leaving Kilkenny castle in 2019
The Bulfin Heritage cyclists leaving Kilkenny castle in 2019

Our Inspiration

The Bulfin Heritage Cycle Rally

Our Inspiration William Bulfin was a journalist, travel writer and proud Irish Nationalist, who was born in Derrinlough, Co. Offaly in 1864. Having returned from Argentina in 1902, where he worked on the pampas amongst the native gaucho or cowboy tribe, he set off on a journey that took him through the highways and byways of Ireland, on a steel framed bicycle made by Pierce of Wexford. His book “Rambles in Eirinn” is an insightful account of his experiences along the route, with each captivating page telling a story of Ireland’s ancient past. The travelogue was first published in 1907, and proved to be a resounding success, extending to a fourth edition, published in 1915.

In previous years the Bulfin Heritage Cycle Rally has followed some of the routes, as outlined in Bulfin’s remarkable book; through Offaly, Laois, Kilkenny and Tipperary. In 2018 we mapped our own route, concentrating on the history and heritage of Co. Laois, taking in such wonderful places as the Irish Fly Fishing & Game Shooting Museum, Heywood Gardens, Timahoe Round Tower & Heritage Centre, Emo Court and the magnificent Rock of Dunamase, to mention but a few! Each year we travel in vintage attire, on High Nelly bikes, and our journey is punctuated by heritage site visits, heritage talks, historical re-enactments, music and food; so ours is a gentle paced leisure cycle, despite the odd difficult hill!

It’s about parking the mountain bike, the 24 gears, the carbon fibre, the racer, and mounting a bicycle from another era…something made of steel…maybe even something a little bit rusty! It’s about dressing up for Ancient Ireland, sharing our heritage in the company of the overseas guests, that regularly join us, and generally enjoying the Craic. Whether you cycle on an old time butcher’s bike, a restored High Nelly charmer, with a stylish wicker basket, a 40’s or 50’s Raleigh, or a modern replica, it doesn’t matter. What does matter, is that you get involved in a novel heritage event where cycling is only part of the fun. The theme for The Bulfin Heritage Cycle Rally 2019, is ‘Meandering Monks & Medieval Miles’ and we will forge a trail through Ireland’s rich monastic and medieval history. So if you are interested in cycling, history, heritage or just having a wonderful fun filled, couple of days, The Bulfin Heritage Cycle Rally, really is for you! It is a leisurely cycle, along a route that promises to be full of hidden history, and heritage, so chalk it down on the calendar – August 24th & 25th 2019!

And Remember, All You Need Is A Bike!

Bulfin Heritage Cycle Rally 2019 – Event Overview

Bulfin Heritage Cycle 2019 - Meandering Monks & Medieval Miles

The Bulfin Heritage Cycle Rally 2021

Irish Country Roads & Culture Trails
Present

Rambles in Eirinn Bulfin Heritage Cycle Rally National Heritage Week 2021

 


 

Details: Day 1: Saturday August 24th

11am: Assembly at Aylward’s Rural Heritage Museum
The Full Irish “Bulfin” Breakfast! Narration from William Bulfin’s book; “Rambles in Eirinn”
Cycle to Aghaboe Abbey – via Coleman’s Road

12:30pm Visit De Vesci Estate, Abbeyleix (By kind permission)
Heritage Talk: ‘The Abbey of Abbeyleix’, at the Monk’s Bridge

2pm: Cremogue Church of St. Fintan
Heritage Talk and Sample a Monk’s Austerity Meal

St. Fintan’s Well
An Irish Country Picnic
Sample a Monk’s Indulgence
Making Merry with Traditional Mead 

4pm: Aghaboe Abbey – A Celebration of our Monks – Saint’s Fergal and Canice
Monastic Trials and Tribulations – Heritage Talk
St Canice: Telling the Story of the Two Coffins – Pageant/Folklore
St. Fergal: Narration from William Bulfin’s book – Rambles in Eirinn & The Austrian connection “
In Days of Old” An Irish “Pattern” Day 
Rustic Merriment with Music, Song & Dance
Food & Refreshments served
St Canice Commemoration Trail – A Pilgrim Path

6pm: Clough
The Land League Priest – local history/storytelling Narration from William Bulfin’s book – “Rambles in Eirinn” Light Refreshments served 

8pm: Bob’s Museum Bar Durrow
BBQ, Music & The Ancient Pastime of Skittles

Overnight in Durrow – Camping facilities at The Harps GAA Centre Option to upgrade to local B&B Day 1 Trail – 38K approx
Option to upgrade to local B&B

Details: Day 2: Sunday August 25th

9:30am: Durrow
A Full Irish Bulfin Breakfast at The Harps GAA Centre
10.30am: Assembly, followed by a Heritage Talk: ‘Durrow in County Kilkenny’

11am: Durrow to Kilkenny
St. Canice’s Commemoration Trail – A Pilgrim Path
Cycle to St Canice’s Cathedral, Kilkenny, via An Béalach Mór Taisteál: (“Up the Hill” transport available)
Lisdowney: Heritage Talk
Freshford – St Lachtain: Heritage talk , and Light Refreshments
A Conker Match: An Exhibition of an Ancient Pastime

2pm: Granges Road, Kilkenny
Meeting with our Kilkenny Hosts, The First Battalion Kilkenny (High Nelly Bicycle Club) Heritage Cycle around Kilkenny – Including:
Tour & Heritage Talk at St Canice’s Cathedral
Kilkenny Castle & The Kilkenny Medieval Mile Heritage Museum

5pm: Celebration Meal
Food & Music at Home Rule Club Kilkenny

8pm: Homeward Bound
An extract from William Bullion’s Book, Rambles In Eirinn
Bus to Durrow (including bike transport)

9pm: Bulfin Event 2019 “Final Handshakes”
Music & Craic at Bob’s Museum Bar, Durrow as the Bulfin Heritage Cycle Rally 2019, concludes with our event’s Final Handshakes!

Day 2 Trail – 32K approx

Weekend Tickets

Bulfin Heritage Cycle Rally 2019

130Plus Booking Fee
  • Vintage Bikes
  • History & Heritage
  • Great Craic

Day Tickets

Saturday 24th August
Booking Fee Includes the following:All meals as advertised, Pageant participation,Heritage Site visits,Tents and camping facilities provided, in Durrow, Co. Laois
Sunday 25th August
Booking Fee Includes the following: All meals as advertised, Pageant participation,Heritage Site visits,Bus & bike transfer - Kilkenny to Durrow and full back-up services

Bulfin Heritage Cyclists To Go Cuckoo Walking

The Bulfin Heritage Cycle On Tour.

Tarbert Cuckoo Walking Festival.


A group from the Bulfin Heritage Cycle Rally, will visit Tarbert, in Co. Kerry on May 4th, for the Cuckoo Walking Festival.

We leave Durrow on Saturday May 4th at 9.30am and return on Monday May 6th.
A bus will be available on Saturday morning for bike transport.
As we will be travelling “under our own steam” the journey to and from Tarbert is at your own discretion .. that means; if you wish to be a part of the High Nelly cycle and the Laois Sept pageant, as organised, you may wish to opt for the Sunday visit only.
Either way you will be very welcome to join us.
Accommodation is provided at the local Hostel at a cost of €20 per person per night, to include continental breakfast.  B&B upgrade available locally.
if you are thinking about joining us, please be aware that Bookings need to be confirmed very shortly.
Should you need further information, please feel free to contact Hugh on 086 8694691 at any time.

What we’ll be doing!

On Sunday 5th, as the clock strikes midday, in the Kingdom, the Bulfin cyclists on High Nelly bikes, will depart from The Bridewell, and cycle through local roads in Tarbert and Glin, including a stop for ice cream at
Wallace’s country shop, a visit to Glin Castle and an energy drink at a local hostelry in Glin.
At 7pm on Sunday evening, May 5th, the Bulfin Cyclists will perform their pageant ‘Return of the Seven Septs of Laois, which was first enacted at last year’s Bulfin Heritage Cycle Rally, on the Rock of Dunamase, and was written by Michael Creagh.

The Laois – Kerry Connection

The pageant delves deep into the history of County Laois, to the early 1600’s in fact, and has forged the strong connection between the Laois based Bulfin Heritage Cycle, and Tarbert Historical Society.

Seven families, who had fiercely resisted English rule, were banished to Co. Kerry, under sentence of death, should they ever return to Laois.

It was Michael Christopher Keane, who recently researched and highlighted the story of the Seven Septs, in his excellent book, From Laois to Kerry., which was first published in 2016. In the book, Keane describes how the families were were handed over to Patrick Crosbie, and were transplanted to lands he had been granted in the Tarbert area of Kerry. The names of the seven clans were O’Moores, Kellys, Dowlings, Lawlors, Dorans, O’Devoys or Deevys or Dees and McEvoys.

Scene from the Return of The Seven Septs pageant.
Scene from the Return of The Seven Septs pageant.

The fact that descendants of the seven septs, still reside in the Tarbert area to this very day, was the inspiration behind last year’s Bulfin Cycle, and the battle-cry was, “It’s time to bring them home!”

With the help of the Tarbert Historical Society, who arrived at Dunamase, on August 25th 2018, carrying seven torches, each representing one of the seven families, we succeeded in having a representative of all the exiled clans, present for their long awaited return to County Laois.

Prior to the arrival of the Bulfin cyclists, you really got a sense that something special was happening on the Rock of Dunamase that day. From every vantage point on the Rock, people stood, scanning the roads, and the surrounding countryside, to catch a glimpse of their approach.

And for our cyclists coming from Emo Court, it was amazing to arrive at Dunamase, and see the crowds that had gathered, wanting to be part of, and witness this historical moment. The anticipation was very real, and though the return of the Seven Septs of Laois, was billed as a ceremonial one, it was beginning to feel entirely more real, than it did symbolic!

The Return of The Seven Septs of Laois

So we are really looking forward to re-enacting the Return of the Seven Septs Pageant, in Tarbert, for this year’s Cuckoo Walking Festival, and everyone is welcome to join us! We hope to make it as special a performance, as it was at Dunamase last year.

We would also like to acknowledge and extend our sincerest thanks, to our friends at the Tarbert Historical Society, for their co-operation and involvement in our event last year.

Sean Conroy presenting the copy of the Septs Transplantation Treaty to the Tarbert Historical Society
Sean Conroy presenting the copy of the Septs Transplantation Treaty to the Tarbert Historical Society

Photographs

A few more photographs from last year’s Bulfin Heritage Cycle Rally, and the Return Of The Seven Septs Pageant.

The Return of the Seven Septs.

See the full story of Day Two of last year’s Bulfin Heritage Cycle Rally, including our visitors from Tarbert, and our Pageant on the Rock of Dunamase, by following the link below.

The Bulfin Heritage Cycle Rally 2018

See the story


Cuckoo Walking Festival Brochure
Cuckoo Walking Festival Brochure

Meandering Monks & Medieval Miles

The Bulfin Heritage Cycle Rally 2019.

Meandering Monks & Medieval Miles.

Our Inspiration

William Bulfin was a journalist, travel writer and proud Irish Nationalist, who was born in Derrinlough, Co. Offaly in 1864.
Having returned from Argentina in 1902, where he worked on the pampas amongst the native gaucho or cowboy tribe, he set off on a journey that took him through the highways and byways of Ireland, on a steel framed bicycle made by Pierce of Wexford.
His book “Rambles in Eirinn” is an insightful account of his experiences along the route, with each captivating page telling a story of Ireland’s ancient past. The travelogue was first published in 1907, and proved to be a resounding success, extending to a fourth edition, published in 1915.

Meandering Monks & Medieval Miles 2019
Off Route Checking for Meandering Monks & Medieval Miles 2019

2019 Event: August 24th & 25th

In previous years the Bulfin Heritage Cycle Rally has followed some of the routes, as outlined in Bulfin’s remarkable book; through Offaly, Laois, Kilkenny and Tipperary.
In 2018 we mapped our own route, concentrating on the history and heritage of Co. Laois, taking in such wonderful places as the Irish Fly Fishing & Game Shooting Museum, Heywood Gardens, Timahoe Round Tower & Heritage Centre, Emo Court and the magnificent Rock of Dunamase, to mention but a few!
Each year we travel in vintage attire, on High Nelly bikes, and our journey is punctuated by heritage site visits, heritage talks, historical re-enactments, music and food; so ours is a gentle paced leisure cycle, despite the odd difficult hill!

It’s about parking the mountain bike, the 24 gears, the carbon fibre, the racer, and mounting a bicycle from another era…something made of steel…maybe even something a little bit rusty! It’s about dressing up for Ancient Ireland, sharing our heritage in the company of the overseas guests, that regularly join us, and generally enjoying the Craic. Whether you cycle on an old time butcher’s bike, a restored High Nelly charmer, with a stylish wicker basket, a 40’s or 50’s Raleigh, or a modern replica, it doesn’t matter. What does matter, is that you get involved in a novel heritage event where cycling is only part of the fun.

The theme for The Bulfin Heritage Cycle Rally 2019, is ‘Meandering Monks & Medieval Miles’ and we will forge a trail through Ireland’s rich monastic and medieval history. So if you are interested in cycling, history, heritage or just having a wonderful fun filled, couple of days, The Bulfin Heritage Cycle Rally, really is for you! It is a leisurely cycle, along a route that promises to be full of hidden history, and heritage, so chalk it down on the calendar – August 24th & 25th 2019!

We don’t want to say too much, but we can give a few hints, such as medieval buildings, round towers, St. Fintan and St. Canice!

We will update with more specific event and ticket sale details, once finalised.

And remember – All You Need Is A Bike!

Check out last year’s event!

 

The Bulfin Heritage Cycle Rally 2018- The Story of Day One

Just follow the link above to see an overview and some photographs of Day One, from this year’s Bulfin Heritage Cycle Rally. There are lots of photographs, so it may take a minute or two to load, so please be patient.

The Bulfin Heritage Cycle Rally – The Story of Day Two –

Just follow the link above to see an overview and some photographs of Day Two, from this year’s Bulfin Heritage Cycle Rally. There are lots of photographs, so it may take a minute or two to load, so please be patient. See The Story of Day One Here

The Bulfin Heritage Cycle Rally 2018

Two wonderful days in August!

In the end it all came and went so quickly! After months of preparations the big day finally arrived on August 24th, and the Bulfin Heritage Cycle Rally 2018, was finally under way.
We have so much to share, from an event that truly touched the hearts and minds of all who took part. So many wonderful places were visited, wonderful people were met, new friendships formed, histories and heritages imparted, battles re-enacted, and the fun and camaraderie that abounded was amazing.
We will over the coming weeks feature the stories, photographs and video footage of every aspect of our journey, and what an adventure it was.

At the Pavillion, Castle Durrow, as registration for the event commences.


See all Pictures from this post

Slight schedule change!

Bulfin Heritage Cycle Rally 2018.

Slight change to Schedule!


1)  Our guided tour of Emo Court has been changed to 11am on Saturday 25th instead of 11.30am.  This necessitates a change to our planned breakfast time at Treacy’s Restaurant. This will now be served at 9.30am and not 10am as previously described.
2)  For those of you who wish to leave your cars overnight in Durrow; secure parking will be available at Castle Durrow. (gates will be locked at night time)
This car park is located at the first entrance on the left (top of the hill and left  through big white gates).
Hopefully we will have someone there to direct you to the Pavillion, located at the rear of Castle Durrow.
Please do not park or leave your car overnight in the Main Car Park at the front/side of Castle Durrow as this is reserved for wedding guests and customers.
Should you require last minute information, don’t be afraid to give me a buzz on 086 8694691.
Otherwise, relax now! and look forward to a leisurely couple of days of cycling, eating, drinking, dancing, singing and acting? but above all, immersing yourself in our hidden heritage.
Wishing you all a happy and safe event!
Hugh
(more…)

Bulfin Heritage Cycle Rally 2018 – Information Pack

Celebrating National Heritage Week

Bulfin Heritage Cycle Rally

(In the “Wheelrims” of William Bulfin 1864-1910)

(A 70k 2 day Cycle)

Friday August 24th & SaturdayAugust 25th 2018


Irish Country Roads & Culture Trails would like to welcome you on this novel cycle through the history and heritage of County Laois. Inspired by the cycling exploits of William Bulfin in 1902, the organising committee have invested a great deal of time and effort in mapping out an interesting and varied programme of historic re-enactments, heritage information and fun events for your enjoyment.

The following are a few pointers to help you enjoy your cycle journey with us.

Our Route Map


We will assemble at The Pavillion, Castle Durrow at 9.30am sharp, on Friday August 24th where cyclist will sign in for registration and have your personal luggage deposited in our event van.

Event souvenir “Passports” will be issued and first stamp assigned.

Bicycles will undergo a safety check. Please ensure that your bicycle is in good working order and fully roadworthy

Introduction to the event will be presented by Matt Doyle, Chairman, Irish Country Roads & Culture Trails.

A short extract from William Bulfin’s book “Rambles in Eireinn” will be re-enacted to set the scene for our cycle.

At selected sites throughout the entire event, the persona of William Bulfin will be enacted by Sean Conroy.

We will depart Castle Durrow for the Irish Fly Fishing & Game Shooting Museum at Attanagh Co. Laois at 11am. Here we will be greeted by Museum Curator, Walter Phelan for a guided tour of the Museum taking in some of its 7000 exhibits. A Fish & Game breakfast will be served here;

In celebration of this unique venue and also, the medieval theme of this year’s event.

We will depart Attanagh Museum at 1.15pm on our outward journey.

Full information, regarding Route Details and Times is in our event brochure, available to all participants on morning of registration.  (more…)

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