Fionn MacCumhaill and the Fianna are historical figures whose heroic deeds and life stories have been embedded through time, in myth and legend. There are many tales concerning their acts of bravery and magic. The Fianna were the bravest, swiftest and strongest of hunters and warriors who made the wild planes and forests of Ireland their home. Fionn, the last leader of the Fianna and arguably their greatest. Said to have been larger than life in more ways than one and always accompanied by his two hounds Bran and Sceolan who were said to be his cousins or nephews (depending on which tale you read),transformed into hunting dogs by evil sorcery.
Now this may not technically constitute a ruin, but considering its historic connection to Fionn Mac Cumhaill and its location it is a magnificent sculpture, I think it more than deserves to be included in my list of historical places. Situated on the Ballymany Roundabout (exit 12 of the M7 motorway), at the entrance to the Curragh Camp, The majestic statue of a spear-wielding Fionn is five meters high, whilst his hounds stand at three meters. The Hill of Allen, which I visited last year, was the home of Fionn MacCumhaill and the headquarters of the Fianna; it can be seen from the site of the sculpture. Fionn and his Hounds are a powerful symbol of strength and protection and they now stand guard once again watching over the vast plains of Kildare.
Completed in March 2010, the sculpture by Lynn Kirkham cost €45,000 (paid for out of profits from Newbridge Town’s car parking fees) and the figures are made of Corten and stainless which has turned ‘rust-like’ over the years adding an authentic vibe. Its one of the many cultural & Historical gems to be found in Kildare & the surrounding areas.