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A Brief History St. Mary's Park

The area of St. Mary’s Park is located on the northern half of King’s Island to the north of the known alignment of the city walls. The island is formed by the River Shannon to the north and west, and the Abbey River to the east and south. This area was originally accessed from the walled Englishtown in medieval times via a gate in the wall called Island Gate.

St. Mary’s Park was completed on 19 August 1935 when the residents of a number of slums in Lady’s Lane, Parnell Street, and in Palmerstown, were re-housed. Click here to read how it was reported in 1935 by the Limerick Leader.

St Mary's Park currently consists of:

  • 463 houses, of which 273 (59%) are privately owned, and 190 (41%) are local authority owned.

  • A frontage of approximately 2 km on to the Shannon and Abbey rivers, with an embankment to control flooding that also functions as an attractive riverside walk.

  • A Special Area of Conservation of 10.7 hectares along the eastern edge of the Island, fronting on to the Abbey River, which extends along the banks of the Abbey and Shannon rivers.

  • Two soccer clubs on a combined site of 3 hectares, with short term leases from Limerick City Council.

  • A military cemetery of 0.6 hectares dating from the 1850’s.

  • A modest community centre in the south-west corner with crèche adjacent.

  • Extensive open space that is low lying and generally neglected

St Mary’s Park was originally to be regenerated by Limerick City Council, who had appointed consultants in May 2007:

St. Mary's Park - LCC Newsletter 2007 (80KB)

Following a public meeting in St. Mary's Park and inspired by the Weston Gardens Residents' Assocciation's open letter to Regeneration CEO Brendan Kenny, a united group of Community and Voluntary organisations wrote an Open Letter to City Manager, Tom Mackey . The letter was also signed by TD's and councillors.

Soon after, it was announced in December 2007 that St. Mary's Park was to be included in the remit of the Northside Regeneration Agency. This news was initially welcomed by residents, who were distrustful of Limerick City Council intentions.

Brendan Kenny, CEO of the Limerick Regeneration Agencies has described St. Mary's Park as "the prize, the prime piece of real estate in the city".

On the 27th of May 2009 the first demolition in St. Marys park took place at No. 1 St. Columcille street. It took two days to demolish the mass concrete house (click here to view).