Loo Bridge, Co. Kerry (and no toilet humour please?)

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Where: Kerry, Ireland

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When: Unknown

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Yet another wonderful Royal plate from Mr. French today with a valley scene from Glenflesk, Co. Kerry. Loo Bridge in Glenflesk looks to have been the centre of activity in the area at that time but I for one never heard of it! What was the bridge used for and does it still stand?

And the answer is that, while no longer in use (as a rail line, station and bridge at least), much of the structures we see here still remain. Another shot mercifully left out of our "no longer standing" album :)


Photographer: Robert French

Collection: Lawrence Photograph Collection

Date: Catalogue range c.1880-1900. After c.1893 (rail line opened)

NLI Ref: L_ROY_04360

You can also view this image, and many thousands of others, on the NLI’s catalogue at catalogue.nli.ie

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Owner: National Library of Ireland on The Commons
Source: Flickr Commons
Views: 5677
robertfrench williamlawrence lawrencecollection lawrencephotographicstudio thelawrencephotographcollection glassnegative nationallibraryofireland loobridge glenflesk cokerry ireland countykerry glenfleskvalley railway trainstation loobridgestation 1890s

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  • profile

    Insher

    • 27/Mar/2019 08:28:13

    Vista su - Seen in: Flickr Global Vai a Flickr Global

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    Niall McAuley

    • 27/Mar/2019 08:46:26

    GeoHive 25" map link. The photographer climbed up above the road to get this shot, so no Streetview to match.

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    R Szwejkowski

    • 27/Mar/2019 08:49:27

    The bridge was in use as a road in the 1980s and I presume is still there. The platform was also there, and I recollect other railway remains, but had no camera so took no photos.

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    Oretani Wildlife (Mike Grimes)

    • 27/Mar/2019 08:53:24

    The Glenflesk Valley is a most beautiful place. It was where we always stopped on our way down to Kerry for the mid journey picnic with flasks of tea. The station used to be a youth hostel and would appear to be a rental holiday house now. I stayed there once when it was a hostel cycling with my brother from Bandon to Kells Bay near Caherciveen. I had a puncture I needed to repair that evening and in the time it took to fix it, the midges had me eaten to next to nothing. The Kerry midges are savages. According to this website eiretrains.com: "Loo Bridge Station, Co.Kerry, was located on the September 1893 opened Great Southern & Western Railway branch line from Headford Jct, on the main line to Tralee, to the market town of Kenmare. Never a profitable line, the Kenmare branch was closed to all traffic in January 1959, with the tracks been lifted the following year. Loo Bridge Station only had one platform, and this survives along with the station building, which has been extended considerably since closure. The trackbed of the line has been turned into a narrow country lane. Adjacent to the station is an old GSWR semaphore signal and buffer stop. North of the station the line crosses the Clydagh River on a lattice girder bridge." And Streetview.

  • profile

    Niall McAuley

    • 27/Mar/2019 08:55:53

    This was a station on the Kenmare branch of the Killarney and Tralee branch of the GS&W railway, opened in 1893.

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    Niall McAuley

    • 27/Mar/2019 09:00:45

    Interesting - the NIAH thinks the former Railway Station was built in 1893 with the railway, but it isn't in this photo or on the 25" map and the railway is, so it was added later.

  • profile

    abandoned railways

    • 27/Mar/2019 09:02:43

    Opened on 04.09.1893 and total closure, goods and passenger, on 01.01.1960.

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    BeachcomberAustralia

    • 27/Mar/2019 09:07:39

    Yikes! Is that the wiggliest wall in the west? ;-)

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    Niall McAuley

    • 27/Mar/2019 09:07:56

    You can rent the station!

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    Carol Maddock

    • 27/Mar/2019 09:15:00

    So disappointed in ye all! Not one person flushed with success at providing information about Loo Bridge. Nobody pooh-poohing somebody else's wee contribution. It's like I don't even know ye anymore...

  • profile

    abandoned railways

    • 27/Mar/2019 09:28:08

    The original Loo Bridge is the road bridge over the River Flesk which is just out of the picture.

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    Niall McAuley

    • 27/Mar/2019 09:39:40

    In 1901 in the townland of Derreenacullig, we find Thomas O'Connor, Stationmaster (and his family), and Denis Cronin Railway Porter. Both are living in houses belonging to the GS&W. The Stationmaster lives in a house with 3 windows to the front and 8 rooms, which must be the new looking house in the foreground. There is also Sgt. McQuaid and 3 badly disguised RIC men in an RIC hut on GS&W land, which I think is the light coloured building left of the station masters house, with the washing line and the distant outside (ahem) loo.

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    oaktree_brian_1976

    • 27/Mar/2019 09:57:31

    Loo Bridge? tee hee.

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    Niall McAuley

    • 27/Mar/2019 09:58:20

    The 1911 census shows the Railway Sation as an unnocupied building with 3 windows as seen here, so the big station building seen today must be after 1911. I think todays shot is very soon after the 1893 opening - the gravel all looks fresh, no sign of gardening around the house, there are still ladders and random planks about.

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    Bernard Healy

    • 27/Mar/2019 11:52:47

    Looking at the Geohive transparency & taking into account that Loo Bridge was a minor station, I think that the NIAH description is likely to be misleading. I would doubt that anything other than the building shown in the Lawrence picture was ever needed as a railway station. The two-storey block & that part of the one-story block with a flat roof strike me as being post-railway. (I note that the flat-roof section seems to be gone nowadays.) Then again, this pic suggests that the additions were in place not _too long_ after the railway closed. Is that 1967 date accurate? catalogue.nli.ie/Record/vtls000306191

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    BeachcomberAustralia

    • 27/Mar/2019 11:54:20

    Via Trove, a chatty description of the area in 1911 by a visiting Australian cyclist, not too easy to read but worth persevering - trove.nla.gov.au/newspaper/article/97563966?searchTerm=%2...

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    derangedlemur

    • 27/Mar/2019 12:04:10

    It used to be a youth hostel. I stayed there in the late eighties.

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    maorlando - God keeps me as I lean on Him!!

    • 27/Mar/2019 13:50:08

    Y'all are marvelous ad always! Wonderful post & comments!

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    Niall McAuley

    • 27/Mar/2019 14:52:57

    [https://www.flickr.com/photos/bernardhealy] I am quite happy that building was a railway station - it is precisely on the platform. That O'Dea is only 7 years after the railway closed. It just wasn't built until after 1911.

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    Niall McAuley

    • 27/Mar/2019 14:59:07

    A hard to link search throws up a book called The Civil War In Kerry, in which it is stated that republicans burned the station building and the stationmaster's house at Loo bridge". It could be that the present structure replaced both after the civil war?

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    Bernard Healy

    • 27/Mar/2019 17:44:36

    [https://www.flickr.com/photos/gnmcauley] So maybe what's there today is a combination station & station master's house - built after the Civil War?

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    Niall McAuley

    • 28/Mar/2019 08:59:25

    [https://www.flickr.com/photos/bernardhealy] That's what I am thinking. Doesn't help with dating this shot, anyhow.

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    philfluther

    • 09/Apr/2019 18:50:02

    Sleepers, near side Water Tower way. The Lurgan Canoe National Museum of Ireland.