Athlone Castle Museum
Athlone Castle now boasts 8 new exhibition spaces that tell the story of the castle and the town of Athlone. The first room deals with the Early Settlement at Athlone and the surrounding area. A 3D interactive map of Ireland encourages visitors to get hands on with the map and click on the buttons to learn a little bit more about five periods of early settlement at Athlone and its environs – Prehistoric, Early Christian, Viking Attacks, Dynasties, Rise of The Ua Conchobairs. There are some Stone Age implements and Early Christian slabs on display here as well which were all found locally.
The next space tells the story of Athlone Castle’s first 400 years. This area describes the first defensive wooden structures at the town and takes you up to the first stone castle built by the Normans in 1210. Also on display here are a number of artefacts that have been found locally. This space also features audio-visual displays and weapons of the period including a bow and arrow and a crossbow that visitors can get hands-on with and test their strength!
The next space covers the pre-Siege situation in Ireland and introduces the characters and events that led to the Siege of Athlone. The story is told through beautiful illustrations done by Victor Ambrus a renowned British illustrator.
Following on from this one is immersed into the Siege itself in the Siege 360o experience in the upper keep. The visitor feels at the centre of the important Siege of Athlone in 1690 - 1 with a 360o view of events.
The visitor is then introduced to some of the important figures of the Siege, those that fought for King James and King William in the People of the Siege. These soldiers are remarkably portrayed using recycled material to give a realistic and visually impressive experience. The men are shown in full uniform and are brought to life beautifully to share their stories with the visitor.
The visitor is then led to the Fabric of Athlone exhibit. Here the modern story of Athlone is told through a variety of local artefacts that reflect the important textile industry in Athlone, while also talking about the education, communications and the military that have shaped Athlone in the modern era.
Then outside in the lower part of the 800 year old keep the Self Sufficient People exhibit is on display. The fascinating array of objects here reflects the fact that Athlone was a self sufficient town right up to the twentieth century. The objects have been acquired by The Old Athlone Society down through the years.
The final exhibition space at Athlone Castle is called Death and Destruction and is in the armoury. Here people can reflect and imagine the very difficult time that existed in Athlone after the Siege. In the town the enemies ran rampage and disease took any people that remained.
After your visit exploring the castle you can relax in the cafe with seating inside and outside. There is also some lovely vantage points at the castle where you can take in views of Athlone town and the river Shannon. The Failte Ireland tourist office is also located in the courtyard of Athlone Castle.
Please check the Museum's website for details of opening hours and admission fees.
Phone : +353 (0) 9064 42130
Website : www.athlonecastle.ie
Email : firstname.lastname@example.org
St Peter's Square,
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