North of Kilkee is the village of Corbally, with its traditional small streetscape. There is an amazing view of the north and south coastline from this point. Its high viewpoint also illustrates the long narrow field systems adopted in Ireland following the redistribution of land from landlord to tenant by the Land Commission from 1885.
WW2 Lookout Post.
Corbally was the location of a World War 2 lookout post number 46, part of the coastal watching service which guarded the coastline. These World War 2 lookout posts or LOPs were located 15km apart and local people was employed at them to report any unusual activity in the sea or air that might affect neutral Ireland’s safety.
At Coosheen in Farrihy Bay is the remains of an improvised slipway. This hints at the once bustling fishing industry at this site. In 1837, there were 50 currachs working along this coastline; at the turn of the 20th century, this was down to 13 currachs. The fishing agent from the nearby towns met the boats when they came ashore in the morning to buy the fish. At its height, there were up to 20 local women gutting, curing and cleaning the mackerel on tables on the seashore. The local women also earned money selling seaweed, fish and shells in the nearby towns. Traditionally three men owned each currach, which they used alternatively and the takings from each fish catch was divided equally between them.
West Clare Canoe Design Project.
In recent years a project was set up Kilkee where six working currachs were built using a template from a fifty year old currach, traditionally called ‘canoe’ in West Clare. The West Clare ‘canoe’ was built by the last of the great traditional currach builders John ‘Cully’ Marrinan of Corbally.
Saint Brendan’s Well.
St Brendan’s Well is situated at Farrihy Shore however now hard to find and in a state of neglect.It was once a famous place of worship for all but especially the fishermen.Locals would gather to clean and whitewash the well each year followed by a Rosary. Each curragh would have a small bottle of St Brendan’s holy water hung from the bow of the canoe to protect then out at sea and if the sea got rough the bottle was hung on the outside of the curragh tipping the waves to help calm the seas. Water from St Brendan’s Well was used in every house in the area. Shaken over a sick animal or person going on a journey or even just the kids going off to school each morning.