Barony of Mullingar

Westmeath, Ireland.

Mullingar (/ˌmʊl.ɪnˈɡɑːr/; Irish: An Muileann gCearr, meaning "the left-handed mill") is the county town of County Westmeath in Ireland. The Counties of Meath and Westmeath Act (Henry VIII ) of 1543, proclaimed Westmeath (which then included Longford which separated in 1586) a county, separating it from Meath. Mullingar became the administrative centre for County Westmeath. The town was originally named Maelblatha, and takes its modern name from a mill noted in the legend of Colman of Mullingar.

Traditionally a market town serving the large agricultural hinterland, Mullingar remains a significant commercial location. It had a tradition of cattle-trading up until 2003, when its cattle market was closed for development of a mixed commercial and residential scheme called Market Point.

Mullingar is famous for the neighbouring lakes, Lough Owel, Lough Ennell and Lough Derravaragh, which attract many anglers. Lough Derravaragh is also known for its connection with the Irish legend of the Children of Lir. The town of Mullingar is linked to Lough Ennell via Lacy's Canal and the River Brosna. Another waterway of significance is the Royal Canal, which loops around Mullingar.

Among Mullingar's major exports are items of pewterware produced by Mullingar Pewter. Also associated with Mullingar is Genesis Fine Art, which produces gift items. The "Pilgrims" sculpture on Mullingar's Austin Friars Street, at which location there once stood an Augustinian Friary, was crafted by Genesis on foot of a commission by the Mullingar chapter of Soroptimists International.

Two print newspapers serve the community: the Westmeath Examiner and the Westmeath Topic together with a blog, Mullingar News and Views.

 

Local government and politics

Westmeath County Council is the local authority for Westmeath. The county council comprises two constituencies or “municipal districts”. Mullingar town is in the Mullingar Municipal District which comprises thirteen members. 

The town is part of the Longford–Westmeath constituency for elections to Dáil Éireann.

There is a Chamber of Commerce in Mullingar, and Mullingar is one of the three towns that forms the Midlands Gateway region, along with Athlone and Tullamore, set up as part of the Government’s National Spatial Strategy 2002-2020.

 

Notable people

2016 The Barons Mullingar / Burkes Peerage copy right