If you are looking for a unique and educational experience in Galway, you should visit Finnerty Mills, a restored corn mill and museum near Loughrea. Finnerty Mills is one of the few surviving water-powered corn mills in Ireland, and it offers a fascinating insight into the history and technology of milling.
Finnerty Mills dates back to around 1820, when it was built by the Finnerty family, who owned the land and operated the mill for generations. The mill used water from a nearby stream to turn a large wooden wheel, which then powered a series of gears and belts to grind corn into flour. The mill also had a drying house, where the corn was dried before milling, and a kiln, where the flour was baked into bread.
The mill was in operation until the 1960s, when it was closed due to competition from modern mills. It was then left abandoned for decades, until it was restored by the current owner, John Finnerty, who is a descendant of the original builders. John Finnerty spent years repairing and restoring the mill to its original working condition, using authentic materials and techniques. He also collected many artefacts and documents related to the milling industry, such as tools, scales, bags, books and photographs.
Today, Finnerty Mills is open to the public as a museum, where visitors can see the water wheel, the gears, the millstones, the drying house and the kiln in action. They can also learn about the history and culture of milling in Ireland, and how it shaped the lives of the people who worked in the mill and the surrounding community.
Finnerty Mills is located in Kylebrack, about 11 km southeast of Loughrea, on the R351 road. It is open from May to September, on Saturdays and Sundays. For more information, you can visit their Facebook page.
Finnerty Mills is a hidden gem of industrial heritage in Galway, and a must-see for anyone interested in learning more about the history and technology of milling. It is also a testament to the passion and dedication of John Finnerty, who has preserved this important part of our heritage for future generations. If you are looking for a unique and educational experience in Galway, you should visit Finnerty Mills.
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