I had made my way out to Clonaslee on the way home from work one evening to find a couple of early Christian cross slabs, which are said to be similar to those found as Cloneagh. Unfortunately it would seem that they have either been moved somewhere else or are no longer in existence. Despite the wasted journey and disappointment, I did come across an old church bell which was unusually located on the grounds of the church as opposed to inside a bell tower. There were also two rather nice Celtic style crosses. I know these are not exactly ruin-hunt material but I guess in a few hundred years they may be considered as such, and at least I didn’t go home empty handed. Clonaslee is actually a rather interesting little village which lies on one of the ancient roadways of Ireland, the Slí Dála or Munster Way. Its original Gaelic place name was either Cluain Na Slighe meaning ‘roadside meadow’, or Cluain Na Sléibhe, meaning ‘the mountain meadow’.
Sometime in the 7th century the area was known as Cill Na Manman,, which took its name from one of the early Irish Saints, Manman whom founded a church here. The village we see today dates back to the early 19th century, and one of its buildings the Catholic Church named after Manman is where my search ended. It is relatively young having only been built in 1813, by the Dunne family, on the site of an old thatched chapel dating back to 1771. The church itself was closed but I was able to stroll around the grounds where I found this nice Church bell. After some renovation to the church in 1955 the bell was moved to its current location from a church in Daingean in Co. Offaly. The original bell, which bears the date 1720, was moved to the rear of the building.