The Gaffer is looking forward to hunting out lots of interesting Thursday Doors for 2020, so I thought it only appropriate that he should be featured in the first photograph of this post. Here he is, checking out the seagulls on the beach at my native village of Blackrock in County Louth. This is where we found our first door of 2020.
The Clermont has been revamped since my last visit to Blackrock and looks very inviting indeed. They serve up an amazing variety of dishes and on my next trip I’ll be trying some of them out, for sure. Here’s a close up of those doors, I think that might be a beer garden at the rear.
The sculpture across the street is one of my favourites as my ancestors were local fishermen and cockle pickers. In their day, The Clermont was quite a thriving hotel. Blackrock was originally a small fishing village and by 1841 the population had reached 507 with 95 houses, mostly small thatched fishermen’s cottages.
However, by 1845 a lot of visitors were attracted to the area. Some came to ‘take the waters’ meaning they drank the seawater as well as making use of the hot saltwater baths that were believed to be very beneficial to one’s health.
Due to complaints about the lack of hostelries and stabling, local landlord Thomas Fortescue had several lodging premises built, The Clermont Arms being one of them. From the mid 1800’s Blackrock grew to become a popular holiday resort for visitors from all over the north east of the country, including many from Scotland. This may have been a help to local people during the years of the Great Hunger, giving some degree of employment. Today, Blackrock has over 3,000 inhabitants.
Some of the properties in the village haven’t changed much over the years. Can you spot the fake door in this next shot?
After all that bird watching and door hunting The Gaffer is ready for a nap.
Thanks a million for joining myself and The Gaffer for this first Thursday Doors post of 2020 and the new decade ahead.