Mullingar {An Muileann gCearr in Irish, meaning “the left-handed or wry, mill”} has become the administrative centre for County Westmeath. The neighbouring lakes, Lough Owel and Lough Ennell attract many anglers, as well as Lough Derravaragh – best known for its connection with the Irish legend – the Children of Lir. Mullingar has expanded in recent years from just a few shops on the town’s main thoroughfares – Oliver Plunkett St., Austin Friars St. and Mount St. to several major shopping areas. There is an out-of-town retail park at Lake Point, the Harbour Place shopping centre near the town centre and a new development at the Green. Mullingar now possesses amenities such as libraries, gymnasiums, snooker halls, internet-cafes, and Arts Centre and railway station.

The County Town of Westmeath, Mullingar is a thriving business, administrative and industrial centre. It is located on the River Brosna and midway between Lough Ennell, Owel and Derravaragh, which service the amenity needs of the town and is encircled by the Royal Canal which with its locks links Dublin with the River Shannon. This canal is now navigable to Abbeyshrule in neighbouring County Longford.

Famous for beefsteak and bachelors, Mullingar’s sporting facilities, pubs, restaurants, nightlife and accommodation are second to none.
Mullingar was one of the ancient palatinate towns founded by the Normans . In 1227 a priory was founded there by the Canons Regular of St. Augustine. The Dominicans also started a foundation there about the same time. Today the town is a thriving commercial centre and is the centre of probably the best cattle raising district in the country. It is encircled by the Royal Canal which with its 46 locks links dublin with the River Shannon. The cost of building the canal bankrupted its investors and it was never profitable. The town contains some early 19th century style architecture and is dominated by the cathedral, dedicated in 1939, and imposing renaissance-style structure. The two towers of the cathedral are 42.6 m high and surmounted by gilt bronze crosses; over the main door there is some fine carved stonework by the late Albert Power, R.H.A. The great mosaics of St. Patrick and St. Anne, near the high altar, are by Boris Anrep and are in the great tradition of Rome and Ravenna ; the cathedral has an interesting ecclesiastical museum. Other buildings of note are All Saints Church, erected in 1816, the recently restored market house which houses the local museum and the town library.


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