Templecronan Oratory




N 53° 02' 46.38"   W 009° 03' 39.72"

Nearest town


Grid Ref.

M 28855 00034

Map No.


Elevation a.s.l. (m)


Date of visit

Wednesday 17 May 2006

GPS Accuracy (m)

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The only photo I took at this site. The ruins of the oratory are down there, almost unreachable in this weather conditions.

Due to the very bad weather of this day, most of the sites we had on our list were out of reach and this oratory is one of them.
The ground was too muddy and wet to walk down there, more it was terribly cold, my ears ached for the very cold air and for the strong wind.
The wind blew so strong that the car was rocking side to side when I parked over here.
We'll try again in the future.

UPDATE: June 16th, 2017 - After 11 years we finally managed and succeeded in visiting this wonderful little church. This time the weather was fine, dry and warm.
Inside a small stone enclosure, partly circular and partly redefined by modern and linear field boundaries, there's a small roofless church built in the 12th century. It is possible, though, that this church replaced a timber structure built in the 7th century.

Originally the entrance of this stone church was a lintelled doorway in the west (270°) wall of the building. This doorway is still visible in the masonry, but it has been walled up with stones. In the 15th or 16th century a new pointed arch doorway was inserted into the north wall. A small trapezoidal window is in the east wall.
Onto the projecting corbels of the church there are carved figures. Other carved heads project from the west and north walls. The east window was decorated with beads and discs on the inner jambs.
The church measures 7.85 metres in length and 5.35 metres in width.

Nearby the church there are two roof-shaped or gable shrines made with flat slabs of stone. The one on the southeast side of the church is known with the name of St. Cronan's Bed. This shrine is 1.70 metres long and 1.32 metres tall. It is possible that this shrine marks the burial place of the saint founder of the settlement. The shrine on the northeast side is beyond the modern field boundary and has no name. It measures 1.50 metres of length and 1.10 metres of height.

When we arrived, we were welcomed at the gate on the farm road by Ruby, a beautiful Collie, who escorted us to the church and guided us along the easiest path, making sure we were always on the safe route, both going to the church and returning to the car.

About 90 metres south from the church there's a holy well.

All the photos of this page except the first one are from this visit.

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