(Dún Léire) is a town in County Louth
Dunleer is situated midway between Dundalk
. It is the principal Town Borough in the Barony of Ferrard
. It has a Charter dating back to 1252. The town is located on the White River.The nearby White River Mill is a 17th century flour mill, which is open at times to visitors. The White River Mill pond is located on the confluence of the White River and Ba Be Stream. The town has its origins in the early Sixth Century Christian monastery of Lann Leire. The Monastery and it's Town were the subject of periodic raids by groups of plunderers between the seventh and twelfth centuries. Rathesker Lakeside
walk and woodland ecological area is located a short distance from the town. This is a local amenity that is well liked in the locality and beyond for its outstanding natural beauty.
Located adjacent to the M1 motorway to its west, there is excellent access to and from the M1, as Dunleer is served by no fewer than three motorway interchanges (M1 Junctions 12, 13 and 14) and is bisected by the main Dublin-Belfast railway line. These linkages played a part in Dunleer changing from a mainly rural town to an expanding commuter town for those working primarily in Dublin, Drogheda and Dundalk. This change in demographic use has also contributed to Dunleer becoming a main hub in the Mid-Louth Area of County Louth.
Dunleer has been a centre of domestic appliance manufacturing since the late 1930s, and is still a centre of manufacturing, with two factories employing several hundred people. There are also a number of thriving services firms.
In recent years, it has been known as the home of the award winning Glebe Brethan Cheese, and Lannleire Honey, both of which are produced here.
Dunleer is well served by the number of schools in its locality. All are Co-Ed.
- Primary -
- St. Kevins NS, Philipstown, Dunleer.
- St. Fintan's NS, Dromin, Dunleer.
- St. Brigid's NS, Ardee Road, Dunleer.
- Secondary -
Scoil Ui Mhuiri Post Primary, Barn Road, Dunleer.
Amenities and clubs
In recent years the town has developed a broad range of services, supplying the needs of its growing population.
Dunleer is home to Lannleire GFC, and St. Kevins GFC are also in Dunleer's locality.
- It has a Roman Catholic Church (St. Brigid's) and a Church Of Ireland Church.
- There is a community library which is planned to be moved into the former parochial house, Bramble Lodge, or as some call it, Market House.
- It has a Recreation Centre, with an indoor Basketball Arena and Gym facilities.
- Dunleer also has an outdoor Athetics Racing Track, the home of Dunleer Athletic Club, located on Lannleire GFC football sports campus. Dunleer A.C. organise the world famous Ras na hEireann Cross-Country International Athlete Races.
- Dunleer has an existing railway station, currently disused, although determined efforts are ongoing to reopen it.
- The Midlouth Camera Club meets every week in The Mill Race Inn, operated by landlord Dessie Connor.
- The "Wee County Vintage Club" also hold their meetings here.
- Dunleer is also home to Scoil Ui Mhuiri Secondary School, which is regarded as a very modern teaching facility.
- Efforts are underway to establish a Gaelscoil(Irish Language Medium Primary School)in the area, and it is hoped for it to be open in September 2009.
Dunleer has a broad range of community groups, many of which are affiliated to the community umbrella body, the Dunleer Community Development Board. The board is a voluntary concern, which advocates, communicates, and drives forward issues which could lead to the betterment of Dunleer for the enjoyment of all in the community.
Dunleer has grown rapidly in recent years, and the population has grown accordingly, with many new houses being built. This is borne out by the Irish 2006 Census, which revealed that Dunleer had 2,340 people living in the Town. This meant the population had grown by more than 30% in five years. Since the most recent census almost two years ago,it could be argued that this figure may be higher, as a significant number of new dwellings have been constructed in the time since the census. With the town experiencing renewed prosperity as a result of this growth, a wide range of shops, pubs, restaurants and cafes have been established in the thriving town centre. Dunleer's proximity to Drogheda, Ardee
, Dundalk, and its location as a crossroads on the main north-south economic corridor of Ireland have made this once rural village officially a town.
Dunleer railway station opened on 1 April 1851
, closed for goods traffic on 2 December 1974
and finally closed altogether on 26 November 1984
. The local community's ongoing campaign to have the Railway Station reopened within the next four to five years continues, with a public meeting having been held recently (February 21 2008
)in which the public gave their overwhelming support to having the existing station reopened. The case for reopening the station is now strong,
with the criteria as laid down by national government policy now being satisfied. With the town experiencing unprecedented population growth, and the number of potential users having risenand a number of other new residential developments in the planning phase, the need for the station is irrefutable. It is now a matter of when, not if, the station will reopen.