The Famine Graveyard – a year on

I had a blogger from Spain contact me during the week to say he was staying in Sligo and couldn’t work out how to get into the Famine Graveyard, I met him yesterday and showed him the entrance, he was sad by what he saw.  Last year I did a blog about it to say the main gate has been locked and the only way in now is through St. John’s Hospital, You can read that blog post here.

Locked gateMyself and Joe McGowan from Sligo Heritage have been into the hospital a few times to see if the bins could be moved as they are against the wall made from stones from the workhouse and also blocking the plaque. A year on nothing has changed.

dscf1586To the person who said this to me: ‘You should count yourself VERY lucky indeed that you have so little to worry you’ – it’s a shame you didn’t bother to find out more about me before you made such a statement. In your world maybe we should just sit back and do nothing.


21 thoughts on “The Famine Graveyard – a year on

  1. Catherine (@_Cath_d) says:

    Thats really disappointing that those bins are positioned there – and that the main gates are (presumably) still locked. I would imagine that the Famine Graveyard would be an important part of Sligo heritage and the history of the community. It is a pity it seems to be accorded so little respect.

  2. jody Greenlee says:

    My sister and I visited Sligo, where our ancestors originated from in the 1860’s, and had a very hard time finding the entrance. Thanks to your blog, which we used to find our way around Sligo, we knew to go in by the rubbish bins. The bins smelled so bad that I took a photo of my sister holding her nose as we went in.

  3. craftysorcha says:

    It’s shocking that nothing has changed in a year. Also, if that is the prevailing attitude, it’s hardly a surprise that a beautiful place like Sligo is so far behind other places in terms of tourism.

  4. fertxu says:

    I’m the Spanish blogger and I would like, once again, to thank you for your kindness being there and going along with me to the Graveyard. I told you I really believed that Irish people do care about their heritage and this situation (not only the locked gate, or the bins, but also the displacement of the gravestones, for example) showed no respect at all for so many countrymen and countrywomen who suffered one of the worst periods in Irish history, a genuine Holocaust. Poor the people who forget their past and only live in the present… Keep on fighting, Val!

  5. SMurphy says:


    I agree with Fertxu, keep up the good fight and do not let the “Haters” deter you.

    This is an important matter. It should not be taken lightly. Those that want to make sad comments like someone is “overreacting” in pointing this disgrace out – perhaps they should be asked what they would do if this was on their (Grandparents- Ancestors) graves?

    That should make them realize this year-old disgrace is intolerable. To have the Gate locked is bad enough, as any concerns about theft could be deterred by one wireless Web-camera on 24/7 cost around 20 Euros). The Bins can easily be wheeled somewhere else and it is shocking given the posts back when this started that they are still there.

    Its obvious the HSE does not care – time to replace some people in such positions!


  6. Ms Sharon Rosaleen Golder says:

    It would be nice to be able to visit Famine Graveyard to remember the dead from the famine years ago. Sadly in today’s world not all in society has the same respect as others, like vandalism might happen to the famine grave yard, so that is why the gates have to be locked to protect famine grave yard. There could be security at the famine grave yard for protection, like other place have protection against vandalism and crime and then the gates could be opened during set times in the day and locked when nice visitors are not visiting famine grave yard.

  7. Ms Sharon Rosaleen Golder says:

    If Famine Grave Yard had security protection the gates could be opened at set times in the day. Nice visitors could then visit Famine Grave Yard. Most places have security protection against vandalism and crime in today’s world sadly.

  8. Ms Sharon Rosaleen Golder says:

    It is nice for world society to have an interest in heritage. Heritage and tourism can help to create jobs and help to create a less stressful and happy atmosphere in society. Protection and security is very important in society.

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