During the 1916 Rising, Mellows Campus was a model farm of around 600 acres, run by the Department of Agriculture and Technical Instruction. It was occupied by 500–700 rebels, who camped there from 25–26 April.
For the short duration of their stay, plentiful accommodation was found in the big lofts of this bell tower. However, its close proximity to the Galway–
Dublin rail line made it unsuitable for a prolonged occupation. The rebels relocated to Moyode Castle and finally disbanded at Limepark House.
To mark the Rising’s Golden Jubilee, the agricultural college was renamed in memory of Liam Mellows.
To mark the centenary, around 55,000 people attended a ‘Farming and Country Life 1916’ event at Mellows Campus from 10–11 June 2016. During this event, a bilingual wall plaque was unveiled at the gable end of the bell tower by the Chairman of Teagasc.
Developed by: Galway County Council, in partnership with the Heritage Research Group at Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology (GMIT).
Bibliography: McCarthy, Mark, Mannion, Marie & Wrynn, Shirley (Eds), Galway County 1916 Rising Heritage Trail: Go Explore the Historic Sites & Memorials (Galway County Council & GMIT, Galway, 2017).
GPS coordinates: Dr Mark McCarthy, GMIT.
Webmaster for digital heritage initiative: Hilary Kiely, GMIT.