WHAT TO SEE AND DO IN BALBRIGGAN

A STREET PHOTOGRAPHER WHO LIKES DOING STUFF

WHAT TO SEE AND DO IN BALBRIGGAN
Balbriggan, a sea-side town located 32km (20mi) north of Dublin City Centre in North County Dublin. The name of the town in Irish is either Baile Bricín, meaning Town of the Small Trout, or Baile Brigín, meaning Town of the Small Hills. The town was originally a small fishing village where King William of Orange and his army set up their camp after the Battle of the Boyne in 1690. In 1920 the town was burned and looted by the “Black and Tans” (a British Military force) after a Royal Irish Constable was murdered during the 1916-21 War of Independence.

Balbriggan is 32 km north of Dublin city, on the Belfast–Dublin main line of the Irish rail network. Commuter rail services serve Balbriggan railway station, which opened on 25 May 1844 and closed for goods traffic on 2 December 1974.It is estimated that about 2,200 commuters use the station every working day. The town is also located next to the M1 motorway (the section known as the Balbriggan Bypass), which was completed in 1998. Prior to this, the main Dublin-Belfast road went through the centre of the town, with major traffic congestion on a daily basis. Bus service is provided by Dublin Bus routes 33, 33A and 33X as well as Bus Eireann routes 101 (Dublin-Drogheda) and 104 (Balbriggan Town service).

Balbriggan is the most northerly town in County Dublin/Fingal (although the village of Balscadden lies further north within the county), and is situated very close to Bettystown, Laytown (County Meath) and Drogheda (County Louth).

Balbriggan experienced a population boom in the early part of the 2000s as a result of the demand for housing within the wider Dublin region. The population has increased as a result, with hundreds of new homes being built.

The River Bracken, also known as the Matt River, which flows through the town, once formed a lake known locally at "The Canal" or "Head"(of water). The water was sluiced through a canal and tunnels down to the Lower Mill where it turned a waterwheel to drive the cotton manufacturing machinery. The retaining wall of the reservoir collapsed in the 1960s and the area was reclaimed through land-fill in the early 1980s to create a public park.

The town is coastal and has a famous sandy beach. It was a holiday destination for people from Dublin city and is the location of a Sunshine Home[10] which aims to provide a holiday to underprivileged children from Dublin.The Sunshine Fund is a unique branch of the Society of Saint Vincent de Paul which provides week-long Summer holidays for children, aged 7 to 11, from disadvantaged parts of Dublin, Meath, Wicklow and Kildare.The Sunshine Fund owns a purpose-built holiday home from the beach in Balbriggan, North Dublin, where it has been running these holidays since 1935. Over 100,000 young people have passed through their doors since they opened.

Balbriggan was also the location of the 19th-century Smith's Stocking Mill, which made stockings as well as men's "Long-Johns" called Balbriggans. These are often mentioned in John Wayne movies – 'he put his balbriggans on' – and both Queen Victoria and the Czarina of Russia also wore "Balbriggans".

Wavin has been manufacturing plastic pipes, contributing to the provision of running water in many Irish rural homes, in their purpose-built facility since 1962. Balbriggan's strong textile connections also include the linen & cotton manufacturing of Charles Gallen & Company, who in 1870, purchased the existing weaving mill and associated facilities built by Baron Hamilton. The firm became famous as the finest linen weavers in Ireland and had custom all over the world. They were also suppliers of linens to the Vatican, Embassies of Ireland and the US, and fine hotels worldwide. The business continues today from another location as the old mill in the town centre has been redeveloped.

Balbriggan railway station has two lines which run through Balbriggan . A viaduct is nearby and can be viewed by a walkway on either side. The right side of the walkway (the railway side) can be entered by stairs at balbriggan beach. The left side (the walking side) can be entered by a path on the public road. The road to the viaduct is quay street. The station currently has 2 platforms, platform 1 has yellow lines, a ticket vending machine with turnstiles and can be entered by the main station house. Platform 2 has to be entered by a bridge over the tracks and also has yellow lines. Each platform has real time information screens based on the progress of trains. The platforms have loudspeakers to make announcements. It is located on the
Dublin to Belfast railway line. It is a stop for some commuter services and sometimes a terminus. An enterprise on its way to Belfast may pass by hourly or some tara mines freight trains at some times.