St. Crispin’s is located to the north of Greystones between the sea and local residential areas from where it provides access to the east of the railway line and to the Bray-to-Greystones Cliff Walk and Greystones North Beach.
and Captain Tarrant’s Farmhouse and Outbuildings. The site also contains evidence of pre-historic, early Christian, medieval and post-medieval settlements. The ruins are all Protected Structures and the site itself is protected under the Greystones Local Area Plan which seeks ‘to protect the character of this area as a heritage and amenity area for public amenity and education’. However, the site and the buildings are overgrown and neglected and vandalism in the form of graffiti and littering is rampant.
With this in mind, a local Urban Design and Planning Consultant, in cooperation with Greystones Tidy Towns, prepared the ‘Rathdown Heritage Park Design Strategy’ which suggests reviving the site, using a bottom-up and phased approach that can be carried out as funding becomes available. In December 2014 the ‘Strategy’ was officially submitted as a contribution to ‘Wicklow County Development Plan 2016-2022’ and to the ‘Local Economic and Community Plan’. The ‘Strategy’ provides a comprehensive description as well as maps and drawings of the present St. Crispin’s and of the interventions that are suggested in order to develop the site to become the ‘Rathdown Heritage Park’.
Plans and work done so far
Using the above ‘Strategy’ as our guide and following a general clean-up and litter removal in 2014, our focus for 2015/16 is on having a proper footpath constructed, on having benches and tables placed along the footpath, on having interpretive signs placed on the site, on having repairs carried out on the ruined and protected Captain Tarrant’s Farm Buildings, and on having a geophysical survey of the site conducted.
In respect of the footpaths we raised funds (during 2015) for a temporary solution and submitted our plans to the District Engineer for his approval. As the engineer thought our proposal unrealistic, the Wicklow County Council agreed to construct the footpath and fund it from its tourism budget. The construction was started late 2015 and will be completed early 2016.
Work in Progress….
Footpath ….. Before & After
As for the tables and benches, a grant of €500 was awarded by the County Council and €1,000 was collected from residents of Redford Park and St. Crispin’s housing estates – initially for the footpath, but reassigned following WCC’s funding of that project. The remainder will be paid from TidyTowns’ own funds. The tables and chairs will be bought and placed along the footpath as soon as this is ready.
The design and production of one interpretive sign and three directional signs have completed – a grant of €3.000 awarded by the Heritage Council towards their construction and erection. Also the erection of the signs will await the completion of the footpath.
In respect of Captain Tarrant’s Farm House and Outbuildings, a local chartered engineer undertook a structural survey and a local quantity surveyor made a cost estimate aimed, initially, at making the buildings accessible and safe.
A quote has been received and accepted for a geophysical survey of the site to be undertaken – this also to await the construction of the footpath.
Click here for reference to St Crispins Cell in RTE Tracks & Trails. Fast forward to 16.58 on clock.