By Lucy Wall-Murphy

The Streams of Bunclody

Fairdays in Bunclody


The Moss-House
and the Bridge Meadow

The Island Hunt and
 Golf Links

The Sawdust Stoves

The Corpus Christi Procession

The Beauties of Bunclody

The Pathway around by Carrhill

Trades and occupations in
Irish Street

The Well in the Wood

Changes in Irish Street

The Well in the Wood

Two housing estates now occupy where once grew Ryland Wood. The name is preserved in one of the estates, ‘Ryland Wood’ which is situated on the site of Ryland Wood Upper, while the ‘Old Forest’ houses stand in Ryland Wood Lower, or, ‘the Lower Wood’ as it was known.

Near the entrance to the upper wood was the quarry from which stones were procured for road mending, and a mechanical stone-breaker stood there for many years. Another housing estate was erected at the quarry land.

Walking up by the right-hand side of the quarry, one proceeded among a little pathway, along which were fraughan-bushes, until one reached ‘the well in the wood’ where one could get a drink of ice-cold water. It was a favourite place for young people to have a picnic. Picking fraughans was also a favourite pastime.

On the roadside below the upper wood was a large boulder in the ditch known as ‘the Grey Stone’, a landmark for those walking ‘the wood road’. The stone is still in situ, although the ditch has been removed.

Another favourite walk was through the lower wood which was entered by a gate opposite the quarry gate. Walking along the pathway, one came to a small stream which had its source in the well in the upper wood. Coming to another gate, one could proceed down ‘Fry’s Lane’, so named after the Church of Ireland minister who lived in the Rectory, Rev. William Robert Baker Fry (1901-194-). Older generations knew it as ‘Archdale’s Lane’ — so pronounced, named from Canon Fry’s predecessor, Rev. John Charles Archdall, (1836-1897). From Fry’s Lane one emerged on to Ryland Road.

Blasting was carried out regularly in the quarry, and during that operation children were kept indoors in case of flying boulders. The sound of the blasting could easily be heard in the town. Explosives were kept in a strongly-constructed concrete little house in Ryland Wood near the quarry.