Thursday, 11 April 2019

Henry Grattan - Moyanna Laois (Moyanna Spin Today).

Depending upon your particular viewpoint Henry Grattan (1746 - 1820), Member of the Irish House of Commons/Irish Parliament was either a staunch Irish Patriot dedicated to some form of Irish Independence or merely a man dedicated to increasing control in Ireland for the Ascendancy class by gaining independent status for the Irish Parliament with powers of legislation independent of the British Parliament and with a franchise limited to those of wealth or property.

It is more than likely he was neither but a mixture of both and as time progressed he no doubt changed his outlook and position. A sign of wisdom is the ability to change your stance over time as your insight or available information dictates. In his time Grattan was an advocate of Catholic emancipation.

Irrespective of views there is a nice statue of the statesman opposite Trinity College and several memorials in Dublin and a bridge over the River Liffey is also named after him, as is at least one Dublin street.

Strangely enough Henry Grattan is closely associated with Moyanna in Laois where he purchased an Estate and wished to be buried. He is actually buried in Westminster Abbey. Having cycled the area several times I have recollection of seeing neither signage nor statue dedicated to the memory of Henry Grattan, a real shame.

I believe the markings above the entrance arch to Moyanna Cemetery (pictured above) are the Grattan Coat of Arms but I don't know how true this is. There is a road in Portlaoise named after him and an Aquaduct just outside Vicarstown.

Today I cycled through Moyanna and then on to "who knows where" when I came across a "Board of First Fruit" Church which was unmarked. I had no idea as to exactly where I was but it was somewhere on backroads between Moyanna and Stradbally (I like to wander aimlessly on the bike).

The Church I presume is no longer holding regular services however it is very well kept and the grounds are being maintained from what I could see.

Interestingly I came across the final resting place of Shuan Fane De Salis who was killed in a flying accident near Limerick in 1962 according to the inscription on the Cross.
His full name was Henry John Aldworth Fane de Salis and he worked for the Bristol Aeroplane Company, engine division. More here : John Fane de Salis