The first of my Thursday Doors images is of a protected heritage building on our street. The Orange Hall was built in 1874.
The Orange Order, is a Protestant fraternal order based for the most part in Northern Ireland but there are a few halls south of the border. This one is no longer in use by its original owners. For most of the year it stands empty but has been kept in good condition over the years. The next photo is of McDonald’s Bakery, next door to the Orange Hall.
I’m not sure of its history but it must have been of some significance to warrant a plaque on its wall.
Enough of the history, now for a bit of nature. Let’s take a walk over to Turbet Island. In a future post I’ll give you the low down on the island but for this week, let the trees speak to you themselves.
This disused railway bridge is our usual route to the island, crossing over to the opposite bank of the River Erne, which cuts through the town of Belturbet in county Cavan.
I took these shots in early summer, when the hawthorn trees were in bloom. There is an old wives tale about such splendid displays of hawthorn blossom – it’s supposed to mean a good summer is on the way. This year, that certainly came true, at times it felt as if we were living in Spain. Although we’ve been having rain these past few days, hot dry weather is forecast again for August, so I’m not complaining about a bit of much needed moisture descending upon us.
In Ireland the hawthorn is often referred to as a ‘fairy tree’ and some farmers to this day will not cut one down when clearing land. Thankfully, this is why we still have a lot of our hedgerows intact.
‘The name hawthorn comes from old English words which mean “thorny hedge”. In ancient times, it was the symbol of fertility and marriage. The healing powers of the hawthorn were invoked by leaving a token on the tree. It was believed that this would result in the disease remaining on the tree also. More specifically, herbalists claim the flowers, leaves and fruit can help with a number of heart problems. In Germany and some other countries, an extract of hawthorn leaves and flowers is available on prescription for mild heart failure.’ *
This footbridge brings us onto the island, which is covered in a mass of shrubs and trees.
These are my two favourite chestnut trees, the first one close to Turbet Island and the second on one of the streets in town.
Well, I hope you are feeling energized and refreshed by all that beautiful greenery. At least, that’s how I feel whenever I take that trip around the island. Thanks for coming along. Norm is still on a break, so no link to other doors this week.