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Coat of arms
Motto: Urbs Antiqua Fuit Studiisque Asperrima Belli  (Latin)
"An ancient city well-versed in the arts of war"[1]
Location of Limerick within County Limerick
Coordinates: 52°39′46″N 8°37′43″W / 52.66278°N 8.62861°W / 52.66278; -8.62861
Country Ireland
Province Munster
County Limerick
 - City 37.3 km2 (14.4 sq mi)
 - City 52,539
 Metro 90,757
Time zone WET (UTC0)
 - Summer (DST) IST (UTC+1)
Area code(s) (+353) 61
Car plates L

Limerick (pronounced /ˈlɪmrɪk/; Irish: Luimneach [ˈl̪imʲɨnʲəx])[2] is the third largest city in the Republic of Ireland,[† 1] and the principal city in County Limerick. Limerick is the second-largest city in the province of Munster, an area which constitutes the midwest and southwest of Ireland.

Limerick is situated on several curves and islands of the River Shannon, which spreads into an estuary shortly after Limerick. Road infrastructure features three main crossing points near the city centre (an additional river tunnel to the west of the three bridges is expected to open in 2010), and in 2006 the Limerick urban area had a population of 91,000.[† 1] Limerick is one of the constituent cities of the Cork-Limerick-Galway corridor, which has a population of 1 million.



King John's Castle is on the southern bank of the River Shannon. Alongside is Thomond Bridge.

Luimneach originally referred to the general area along the banks of the Shannon Estuary known as Loch Luimnigh. The earliest settlement in the city, Inis Sibhtonn, was the original name for King's Island during the pre-Viking and Viking eras. This island was also called Inis an Ghaill Duibh, The Dark(haired) Foreigner's Island. The name is recorded in Viking sources as Hlymrekr.

The city dates from at least the Viking settlement in 812. The Normans redesigned the city in the 12th century and added much of the most notable architecture, such as King John's Castle and St Mary's Cathedral.[3] During the civil wars of the 17th century the city played a pivotal role, besieged by Oliver Cromwell in 1651 and twice by the Williamites in the 1690s. Limerick grew rich through trade in the late 18th century, but the Act of Union in 1800 and the famine caused a crippling economic decline broken only by the so-called Celtic Tiger in the 1990s.

The Waterford and Limerick Railway linked the city to the Dublin-Cork main line in 1848 and to Waterford in 1853. The opening of a number of secondary railways in the 1850s and 1860s developed Limerick as a regional centre of communications.


The River Shannon. In the centre of the picture is King John's Castle.

Limerick is at the centre of the Midwest region, which contributed €8.224 billion in 2002 to Irish GDP. It is 195 km west of Dublin and is 105 km from both Cork to the south and Galway to the north.


Limerick has a mild climate, with the average daily maximum in July of 20°C (68°F) and the average daily minimum in January of 4°C (39°F). The highest temperature recorded was 31.6°C (88.9°F) in 1995, and the lowest -11.2°C (11.4°F) in 1998.

Limerick, Ireland (XXXX-XXXX)
Climate chart (explanation)
average max. and min. temperatures in °C
precipitation totals in mm


The population of Limerick city and the immediate urban area was 90,778 at the 2006 census carried out by the CSO), of whom 52,560 live within the city limits and 38,218 in the city's immediate environs in County Limerick and County Clare.[10] As with most other large cities in the country, Limerick has attracted a noticeable immigrant community over the past decade. The Polish community is the second largest outside of Dublin, with an estimated 10,000 living and working in the city. Ireland's first Polish bank opened in 2007.[11] The African community has set up a number of churches, which are now part of the cultural makeup of the city.[10]

About 41% of all housing in the city is local authority, the highest in Ireland. The unemployment rate in the city in the 2006 census was the highest in the Republic, at 14.6%.[12]

Limerick is the fourth most populous city in the Republic of Ireland after Dublin, Cork and Galway (though its urban area population is greater than Galway's), and the city including suburbs is the fifth largest urban area on the island of Ireland (after Dublin, Belfast, Cork and Derry).


Limerick City Council, formerly Limerick Corporation, has responsibility for local services such as sanitation, planning and development, libraries, collection of motor taxation, local roads and social housing. The City Council comprises elected ward councillors with an appointed full time CEO as City Manager. Local elections are held every five years and the councillors annually elect a Mayor to chair the council and represent the City. In 2009 the Mayor is Councillor Kevin Kiely. Former well-known mayors include TDs Donogh O'Malley, Stephen Coughlan, Michael Lipper, Jim Kemmy and Jan O'Sullivan.[13]

The boundaries of the city were extended on March 1, 2008, when the Limerick City Boundary Alteration Order 2008 came into effect. This followed demands from city councillors for a redrawing of the boundary, which was deemed antiquated and inaccurate for modern-day Limerick.[14] The order added an area of approximately 1,020 hectares from County Limerick, increasing the city's area by almost 50% and increasing the population by an estimated 7,000.[15] The added area comprises the townlands of Clonmacken, Caherdavin, Knock, Shanabooley, Ballygrennan, Clonconane, Clondrinagh, Coonagh East and Coonagh West.[16] The previous boundary, encompassing 2,086 hectares, was delineated in 1950.

A large proportion of the population of the Limerick urban area lives in suburbs built after the 1960s that remain in the Limerick County Council area. These include Dooradoyle, Castletroy — including the University, Gouldavoher, and Raheen.

For national Dáil elections Limerick City is in the Limerick East constituency. For European parliament elections Limerick is in the South Ireland.

Limerick East TDs Peter Power is the Minster of State for Overseas Aid.


Limerick is at the heart of the region dubbed "the Midwest". Also known as the "Shannon Region", this is primarily an economic and social concept. The region encompasses County Limerick, County Clare, North County Tipperary and Northwest County Kerry, with its focal point centred on Limerick and its environs within an eight-kilometre (five-mile) radius.

The area is possibly the main economic region outside of Dublin and Cork. Its economic success has been driven in part by the University of Limerick, Shannon Airport in Co. Clare and Shannon Development (an economic development agency), whose precursor was SFADCO (Shannon Free Airport Development Company), an economic agency that provided tax incentives to companies locating in the area surrounding Shannon Airport. As of 2006 Shannon Development is mostly concerned with disposing of valuable industrial park properties.

Historically Limerick was an agricultural commodity-driven economy, due to its position as the first major port along the River Shannon. The city was one of the main meat processing areas in Ireland, and industry included confectionery and flour production. In line with the changing economic landscape in Ireland, many multinational companies are based in Limerick. Dell has its main European Manufacturing Facility in Raheen Business Park, and is one of the largest employers in the midwest region.[17] The facility is the largest Dell manufacturing plant outside the United States and produces 30,000-60,000 units per day for export to the EMEA, contributing 5.8% of Irish GDP (2002). In January 2009 Dell announced that it would close its Limerick plant and move the production lines to Poland. Analog Devices has its European manufacturing base in Raheen, 3 km south-west of the city centre. The site employs more than 1,000 people. Johnson & Johnson subsidiary Vistakon (the world's largest manufacturer of contact lenses) has a large facility in Castletroy in the National Technology Park. It is Vistakon's only production facility outside the United States and one of the largest contact-lens manufacturing plants in the world.


Limerick City is one of the country's main tourist destinations, only a 15-minute drive from Shannon Airport. Currently tourism is growing at a spectacular rate with over 1,000 new beds being opened in the city in 2006 thanks to the opening of five new hotels. The city is the first to provide visitors with 'Street Ambassadors', people designated to help others around and make their stay more enjoyable.

Tourist attractions in the city centre include King John's Castle (1212), St Mary's Cathedral (1168), Hunt Museum, several seasonal tours (Angela's Ashes walking tour of Limerick City, historical walking tour and boat tours along the River Shannon), the University of Limerick, Georgian house and gardens and the Treaty Stone. Adare village and the Foynes Flying Boat Museum on the outskirts of the city are also popular attractions.

The Jim Kemmy Municipal Museum, also known as Limerick Museum, is next to King John's Castle. It contains displays on Limerick's history and manufactures.[18]


The service industry is an important employer in the city. The city centre is one of the main shopping areas, with the pedestrianised Cruises St being one of the main shopping streets and also the recently pedestrianised Bedford Row. New on the agenda is the proposed predestranisation of O'Connell St up to Roches St near the Oriental Foodstore and a new look for William St, the heart of Limerick City. Each side of the city has outlying shopping areas. Crescent Shopping Centre is in Dooradoyle, not far from the city centre. It has over 90 shopping outlets along with restaurants and the 12-screen Omniplex Cinema. Regular bus services run from the city centre to the Crescent Shopping Centre. The Jetland Shopping Centre is in Caherdavin. It opened in 2005. Its main anchor is Dunnes Stores, with other shops and services including Golden Discs and Costa Coffee

In late 2007/early 2008, Coonagh Cross Shopping Centre was opened. It will be the biggest shopping centre in the Mid-West region. A city-centre shopping centre of a similar scale (billed in some places as prospectively the biggest in Munster) is also planned. The Opera Centre would be located parallel to Rutland and Patrick Street, from the (Abbey River) quays to Ellen Street. This will be the first major leap of faith by external developers in Limerick City Centre as up to now the city has been all but passed over leaving the majority of development to locals. There is also a proposal to redevelop the Arthur's Quay and Sarsfield Street area, incorporating a new street from O'Connell St to Arthur's Quay Park. The construction of suburban shopping centres has had an effect on city centre retail by reducing footfall in shopping areas. It is hoped that these new developments will improve retail in the city centre. However, the recent downturn in the economy has seen some high profile closures and the Opera Centre development has stalled.


Limerick City has a vibrant nightlife, with numerous nightclubs the best known being Trinity Rooms with Icon, Teds and Peter Clohessy's Sin Bin being amongst the others. Pubs such as Nancy Blakes, The Wicked Chicken, Mickey Martins and The Old Quarter give a range of drinking experiences from the warm and cosy to cutting edge. Traditional Irish Music is based around Dolans Warehouse which is firmly established on the national Trad circuit and also hosts many local, national and international folk, indie, jazz and rock acts.


Ireland's tallest church spire is at St John's Cathedral.

The city centre is divided between the traditional areas of "English Town" on the southern end of King's Island, which includes the castle; "Irish Town", which includes the older streets on the south bank; and the current economic centre, called "Newtown Pery". Newtown Pery was built in the late 18th century before the Act of Union and, unusually for an Irish city and unique in Limerick, is laid out on a grid plan. Limerick city centre is changing rapidly, with the construction of several modern high-rise buildings in the early 2000s. The suburban regions, where the majority of the population now live, have grown out from the centre along the main roads to Ennis (North Circular and Ennis Road areas/Caherdavin), Dublin (Castletroy and the University) and Cork (Ballinacurra/Dooradoyle/Raheen). Suburban houses are generally two floor semi-detached homes for single families. These were built from the 1960s onwards in large estates by government projects and commercial developments, although there are many examples of Edwardian and older 1930s suburban homes on the main suburban thoroughfares leading towards the city (North & South Circular, Ballinacurra Road, O'Connell Avenue).

Much Georgian architecture was evident in the city from about the 1800s onwards. Although some has been demolished, much of the Newtown Pery area is built in the Georgian fashion. Other architectural buildings of note in the city are King John's Castle and St Mary's Cathedral in English Town and St John's Cathedral, designed by the notable Victorian architect, Philip Charles Hardwick. St Mary's Cathedral, at over 800 years old, is one of the oldest in Ireland. St John's Cathedral, whilst more modern, has one of the tallest steeples.

One of Ireland's most celebrated museums, the Hunt Museum, is based in the historic 18th-century former Custom House. The museum was established to house an internationally important collection of approximately 2000 works of art and antiquities formed by John and Gertrude Hunt during their lifetimes. On display are the 9th century Antrim Cross, a sketch by Picasso and a bronze sculpture of a horse, said to be from a design by Leonardo da Vinci.



A bus outside Brown Thomas

Local public transport is provided by Bus Éireann, Ireland's national bus operator. City service routes are as follows (frequencies shown in brackets, in minutes):

  • 301 City Centre to Shannon Banks or Westbury (301A) (20)
  • 302 City Centre to Caherdavin (302A Caherdavin to University) (20)
  • 303 Carew Park to Ballynanty (30/60) (30)
  • 304 City Centre to Raheen (304A via Greenfields) (10)
  • 305 Lynwood to Coonagh Roundabout (30–60)
  • 306 Craeval Park to O'Malley Park (30)
  • 308 City Centre to University (308A via Pennywell) (15)
  • 309 Pineview to St. Mary's Park (60)
  • 312 City Centre to Ballycummin (60).
  • 313 City Centre to Ardnacrusha (via Parteen) (40)
  • 343 City Centre to Airport (Stops at some times) (55)

Buses run to towns and villages in the county and to Shannon Airport. Intercity and international buses leave from the Bus Éireann bus station adjoining Colbert railway station. These include hourly services to Dublin, Cork and Galway and other cities, and a daily service to London via the ferry from Rosslare Europort.


Iarnród Éireann's Colbert Station is the terminus for direct services to Dublin(serving intermediate stations), an all-day commuter service to Ennis, services to Ballbrophy via Nenagh, and a four-times daily service to Waterford and stations in County Tipperary. Services to and from Nenagh on the Ballybrophy line were expanded to include an extra commuter service each way in 2008. Due to speed restrictions this former direct route from Limerick to Dublin takes some 60 minutes longer (with a change at Ballybrophy) than other routes. Passengers for Cork and the South must change at Limerick Junction. Changing at Limerick Junction also gives Limerick extra services to Dublin - in fact services to/from Dublin involving a change are around ten minutes quicker than the direct trains. There are also plans and construction work in progress to reopen the Western Railway Corridor from Ennis to Galway and later to Sligo, the last remaining section having closed in 1976. In February 2006 it was announced that regular services between Limerick and Galway would be restored. Construction is nearing completion and the line will open in December 2009.[19] . Sixmilebridge station, on the existing line between Limerick and Ennis will also open at this time. The Railway Procurement Agency has suggested that a tram system should be built in the city.

As part of its 2007 election manifesto, announced in April 2007, Fianna Fáil (currently the largest party in the Dáil and the Seanad) announced that it will conduct feasibility studies for bringing light rail systems to the Republic of Ireland's provincial cities - Cork, Galway, Limerick and Waterford.

Limerick railway station opened on 28 August 1858, replacing an earlier, temporary station 500 m east, which had operated from 9 May 1848.[20]


Shannon Airport, 20 km west of the city in County Clare, which by 2010 will easily be accessed by Limerick passengers due to the opening of the Limerick Tunnel, has scheduled flights to European and North American destinations. Airlines using the airport include Ryanair, Aer Lingus and Delta Air Lines. There is no rail link to the airport. Coonagh airfield, due to close soon and move to a new site, is a few kilometers west of Caherdavin, serving small private aircraft. Kerry and Cork Airports are around 1 hour 30 minutes and 2 hours drive away, respectively.


Limerick is an important centre of higher education in Ireland after Dublin and Cork. It is home to ten higher institutes of learning and has a student population of over 20,000.

Technical and continuation education within the city traces its beginning back to the formation of the Limerick Athenaeum Society in 1852. The Society's aims included "the promotion of Literature, Science, Art and Music".

The Schumann building at the University of Limerick

The University of Limerick (UL), has a student population of over 13,000, and is about 5 km northeast of the city centre in the suburb of Castletroy. It was established as the National Institute for Higher Education (NIHE) in 1972, and in 1989 was the first university to be established since the foundation of the State in 1922. It is notable for its programs of engineering, information technology, materials science, sports science, humanities, social sciences and music. In 2007, the university opened a medical school. The Irish World Music Centre specialises in traditional music and dance, and UL is host to the Irish Chamber Orchestra. The campus includes a 50-m Olympic-standard swimming complex, the first in Ireland. The University has one of the longest footbridges in Europe, the "Living Bridge".[21][22]

Mary Immaculate College, Limerick, a constituent college of the University of Limerick, is an education and arts college just south-west of the city centre. Thomond College of Education, Limerick was a successful teacher training college for secondary level and was integrated into the university in 1991.

Limerick Institute of Technology - Moylish Park

Limerick Institute of Technology (LIT) has a student population of 6,500 and is a centre for business, engineering, information technology, humanities, science and art education. The main campus is located at Moylish Park, about 3 kilometres north-west of the city centre, and the Limerick School of Art and Design is in the city centre. The college was established as the Limerick College of Art, Commerce & Technology (CoACT) in the mid 1970s and was upgraded to a Regional Technical College (RTC) in 1993 and finally an Institute of Technology in 1997. LIT has a strong sporting ethos, which is not surprising given its location adjacent to Thomond Park and the Gaelic Grounds. It houses the Millennium Theatre a popular northside venue for shows and concerts.

Primary and secondary education in the city is organised similarly to the rest of Ireland.

The Model School (An Mhodh Scoil) is one of the gaelscoils in Limerick. It is a primary school with over 500 pupils. It is over 150 years old, and is the only school in Munster with the educlick education system.

The city also has at least two secondary schools which provide education through the Irish language - Gaelcholáiste Luimnigh, and Laurel Hill Coláiste.

Media and the arts


RTÉ lyric fm, a state-run classical music radio station and part of RTÉ, broadcasts nationally from studios in the city centre. Limerick's local radio station is Live 95FM, broadcasting from 'Radio House', near the waterfront at Steamboat Quay.

Spin Southwest, owned by Communicorp, broadcasts to Counties Kerry, Clare, Limerick, North Tipperary and southwest Laois from its studios at Landmark Buildings in the Raheen Industrial Estate.

Limerick's only student radio station, Wired FM, broadcasts on 99.9FM from Mary Immaculate College. Wired FM also has studios in Limerick Institute of Technology.

Limerick Regional Hospital has a radio station on 94.2FM, but this can be heard only in the hospital and surrounding area.

West Limerick 102 is broadcast from Newcastle West.

The national broadcaster, RTE, has radio studios in the City Centre, which are periodically used to broadcast programming from Limerick.


Several local newspapers are published in the city, including The Limerick Post, The Limerick Leader, and the Limerick Independent. Magazines include the Limerick Event Guide, Business Limerick and Limerick Now.


The Belltable Arts Centre on O'Connell Street

The Belltable Arts Centre on O'Connell Street hosts for local playwriting and drama. Mike Finn's numerous plays have been successful, including Pigtown, set around a century of the city's history, and Shock and Awe, an energetic retelling of Homer's Iliad. The new University Concert Hall provides a large venue for national and international acts to visit the city.

Limerick is also the home of several "street theatre" companies, including "Janzo Street Arts" and "The Umbrella Project" street theatre companies.[citation needed]

The Limerick City Art Gallery on Pery Square is the city’s chief venue for contemporary art exhibitions. It is home to a permanent collection of Irish art, which shows works from the early 18th to 20th century. Limerick's major contemporary art event is EV+A (Exhibition of Visual+ Art) which invades the city annually, often in controversial ways. Established in 1977, EV+A has become one of Ireland's premier annual exhibitions of contemporary art. Selected each year by a new curator, it brings international artworks and art by Irish artists to Limerick. The centre of the exhibition is the Limerick City Art Gallery, but EV+A generally uses numerous other venues throughout the city.

Other active Limerick arts groups include Contact Studios, which provides individual studio spaces for visual artists; the Daghdha Dance Company, a contemporary dance company that has adopted a renovated church in John's Square, adjacent to St John's Cathedral, as a performance space); the Fresh Film Festival, which is held each spring, and includes films made by young people (7–18 years) from all over Ireland; Impact Theatre Company; and Limerick Printmakers Studio and Gallery, which provides printmaking facilities, a venue for exhibitions and events and an education programme. The Limerick Youth Theatre provides young people with an opening into acting and production. It received attention in the national media with its 2005 production of Romeo and Juliet, which made comparisons between the ongoing feud in the city with that of the Montagues and the Capulets in the play.

The city has an active music scene, which has produced bands such as The Cranberries and guitarist Noel Hogans' MonoBand, The Hitchers and many more. World-renowned electronic musician Richard D. James, more commonly known as Aphex Twin, was born in Limerick in 1971. The Limerick Art Gallery and the Art College cater for painting, sculpture and performance art of all styles. The Irish Chamber Orchestra and the Irish World Music Centre are both based in the University of Limerick. The University has a thousand-seat state-of-the-art concert hall that frequently hosts visiting performers. Limerick is also home to comedians D'Unbelievables (Pat Shortt & Jon Kenny), Jimmy Carr ,The Rubberbandits and Karl Spain. Dolans Warehouse on the Dock Road has two venues specialising in live music; an upstairs venue which tends to accommodate comedians and folk and jazz acts, and a much larger warehouse venue holding 400, which tends to stage more popular (usually rock) acts, both national and international. Dance music is catered for at Baker Place which holds mainly local underground nights and Trinity Rooms which has regularly hosts big names like Hot Chip, Groove Armada, DJ Yoda and Jazzy Jeff alongside more cutting-edge names like Dan Le Sac, Christian Smith, and Missill.

The city is the setting for Frank McCourt's memoir Angela's Ashes and the film adaptation. It is the setting for the contemporary coming-of-age drama Cowboys & Angels and Robert Cunningham's Somebody's Daughter, which was shot in various locations around the city and had its premiere in King John's Castle in July 2004.

A limerick is a type of humorous verse of five lines with an AABBA rhyme scheme: the poem's connection with the city is obscure.


  • St John's Hospital, Limerick
  • Barringtons Hospital, Limerick
  • The Mid-Western Regional Hospital, Limerick
  • The Mid Western Regional Maternity Hospital, Limerick
  • St Camillus' Geriatric Hospital, Limerick
  • St. Josephs Psychiatric Hospital, Mulgrave Street, Limerick.


Rugby, Gaelic football, hurling and association football are popular sporting pastimes in Limerick. The city and suburbs also has many tennis, athletics, and golf clubs - including Limerick Golf Club. Over the past year the city has hosted a number of large sporting events including the Irish Open (Golf) in Adare, All-Ireland Corporate Games and the World Baton Twirling Championships.[23]


Munster fans in Limerick during the 2006 Heineken Cup.

Rugby Union is perhaps disproportionately popular in the city and is popular at all levels, from school to senior league level.[24][25][26] Since its onset in 1991 the all-Ireland league has been dominated by Limerick teams, who have won the competition 12 times in 17 years. The best performers have been Shannon (winners nine times), Garryowen (three times), and Young Munster (once).

St. Munchin's College, Corbally, is one of the stronger schools for rugby in recent times. Winning its first title in the Munster Schools Senior Cup in 1968, it has won since the Cup four times. It also has three titles at junior level. Munchin's has been particularly strong in recent years and many former pupils have gone on to play at international level, including Bill O'Connell, Bill Mulcahy, Larry Moloney, Colm Tucker (also a Lion), John Fitzgerald, Paul Hogan, Philip Danaher (also Irish captain), Anthony Foley (also Irish captain), Keith Wood (also a Lion and Irish captain) and current Irish internationals Marcus Horan, Jerry Flannery, Barry Murphy, Jeremy Staunton and Keith Earls. Crescent College S.J. is another of school with a strong rugby tradition. It has been run by the Jesuit order since 1859, and in common with its sister Colleges of Belvedere and Clongowes it has produced a number of Irish international rugby players including the Wallace brothers, Pat Whelan and Peter Clohessy. Crescent is one of the 'big five' rugby schools in Munster, winning the Munster Schools Senior Cup for the first time in 1947 and nine times subsequently, as well as five titles at junior level. The school is affiliated to Old Crescent RFC. Other newer schools in Limerick which are at developmental stage include Ardscoil Rís, which produced the Lions, Ireland and Munster lock, Paul O'Connell. Ardscoil reached the final at senior level in 1993 and 1996, and have won the Munster Junior Cup twice, in 2003 and 2005; Castletroy College reached their first Munster Junior Cup final in 2007 after only seven years being open. The following year they achieved the double with both Junior and Senior teams winning the respective tournaments for the first time in the school's history.

All Munster European Heineken Cup matches are played at the recently redeveloped Thomond Park Stadium, where the Munster team held a record of being unbeaten in the Heineken Cup for 26 consecutive games until the 16-9 defeat by Leicester in January 2007. No other team in the competition has such a home record. Munster won the Heineken Cup in 2006 under the leadership of Killaloe man Anthony Foley, who also played on the Irish international team and in 2008 under the leadership of British & Irish Lion and Limerickman Paul O'Connell. Munster recorded a famous 12 - 0 victory against the New Zealand All Blacks in 1978 at Thomond Park. Munster is the only Irish team to have beaten the All Blacks.

Gaelic Games

City Junior B Hurling Championship between Milford and Patrickswell in Patrickswell, 28th August 2004

Ireland's national sports of Hurling and Gaelic football are widely played in the city and its surrounding suburbs. Although Limerick has not won the All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship since 1973, it reached the finals in 1974, 1980, 1994, 1996 and 2007 and is considered one of the top eight teams in the game. The county won successive All-Ireland Under-21 titles in 2000, 2001 and 2002. City-based clubs Claughaun (Clochán) and Na Piarsaigh play at senior level, Monaleen (Móin a'Lín) and Mungret (Mungairit) at intermediate level and Old Christians (Sean-Chriostaithe), Milford (Áth an Mhuilinn), Saint Patrick's (Naomh Pádraig), Abbey Sarsfields (Sáirséalaigh na Mainstreach) and Crecora (Craobh Chumhra) at junior level.

Limerick won the first All-Ireland Senior Football Championship in 1887 when represented by the city's Commercials club and repeated the feat in 1896. Since then, the game has lived mostly in the shadow of hurling but a resurgence in 2000 saw the county win its first Munster under-21 title and lose the 2004 Munster senior final after a replay. Monaleen (Móin a'Lín), Claughaun (Clochán) and Mungret (Mungairit) are senior clubs, Saint Patrick's (Naomh Pádraig) and Na Piarsaigh are intermediate and Milford (Áth an Mhuilinn), Abbey Sarsfields (Sáirséalaigh na Mainstreach) and Ballinacurra Gaels (Gaeil Bhaile na Cora) play at junior level.

Limerick's Gaelic Grounds (Pairc na nGael) on the Ennis Road is the county team's home venue for both sports and has a current capacity of 50,000 following its reconstruction in 2004. In 1961, it hosted Ireland's biggest crowd for a sporting event outside of Croke Park when over 61,000 paid to see the Munster hurling final between Tipperary and Cork.


The city's involvement with senior football (soccer) began in 1937 and has continued without interruption. Though arguably under-achieving in the decades since then, Limerick and its successors have captured a number of trophies, including 2 League of Ireland Championships and two FAI Cups, prior to a move from the city centre Markets Field ground in the 1980s. Limerick are currently challenging for promotion from the League of Ireland First Division, the second tier of Irish football. 'The Super Blues' home ground is Jackman Park, next to the railway station.


The Limerick Lions are the city's basketball side, competing in Basketball Ireland's Superleague.' The Jungle Kings play their home matches in the University Arena, which has a capacity of 2,500. The Limerick Lions were National Cup Champions in 2002 and runners-up in 2006, when they lost in the last 30 seconds of overtime. The team have never won the league. There are many of other teams at school and club level, including Limerick Lakers, Taste of Europe and UL Auginish, the very successful women's Superleague team.


Recently the government appointed John Fitzgerald, retired Dublin City Manager, to carry out a speedy and comprehensive investigation of issues prevailing in Moyross and other parts of the city and to make recommendations to the Cabinet Committee on Social Inclusion. Mr. Fitzgerald reported back in early April 2007 and his recommendations were fully endorsed and approved by the Cabinet. A key element of the approved recommendations was the creation of two new special purpose Government Agencies for the Southside and Northside of Limerick City and these Agencies were established by Government Order dated 15 June 2007.[27]

Famous Limerick people

See List of Limerick people.

Twinned cities

Limerick is twinned with:

See also

Notes and references


  1. ^ a b Information based on Central Statistics Office figures from 2006, which is the most recent census information available.[1]


  1. ^ Barry Duggan (29 May 2009). "New coat of arms for 'ancient' city". Irish Independent. 
  2. ^ From loimeanach [ˈl̪imʲənəx] meaning "bare marsh", a name that is Roman and is originally applied to part of the shoreland of the Shannon immediately below the present city
  3. ^ Brian Hodkinson, The Topography of Pre-Norman Limerick, North Munster Antiquarian Journal, Vol 42, 2002, pp. 1-6
  4. ^ For 1653 and 1659 figures from Civil Survey Census of those years, Paper of Mr Hardinge to Royal Irish Academy March 14 1865.
  5. ^ Census for post 1821 figures.
  6. ^
  7. ^
  8. ^ Lee, JJ (1981). "On the accuracy of the Pre-famine Irish censuses". in Goldstrom, J. M.; Clarkson, L. A.. Irish Population, Economy, and Society: Essays in Honour of the Late K. H. Connell. Oxford, England: Clarendon Press. 
  9. ^ Mokyr, Joel; O Grada, Cormac (November), "New Developments in Irish Population History, 1700-1850", The Economic History Review Volume 37 (Issue 4): 473–488, doi:10.1111/j.1468-0289.1984.tb00344.x, 
  10. ^ a b " - 2006 Census preliminary report - See 'Limerick City', 'Meelick rural area' and 'Limerick rural area'". 
  11. ^ Limerick may get Polish bank -
  12. ^ "Papering over Limerick's Cracks", article by Conor Lally, Irish Times Weekend Review, 15 November, 2008
  13. ^ "List of the Mayors and Sheriffs of Limerick City - 1197-present". 
  14. ^ "Limerick City Development Board - Strategy for Economic and Social Development". 
  15. ^ "Boundary move puts 7,000 residents in Limerick city, Limerick Leader, March 4, 2008 (accessed March 4, 2008)". 
  16. ^ "Proposed Limerick City Boundary Alteration". Limerick City Council.,7796,en.html. Retrieved March 4, 2008. 
  17. ^ 2,000 jobs boost as computer giant Dell expands - Irish Independent article, registration required.
  18. ^ "". 
  19. ^ Galway to Limerick Railway on track for 2007
  20. ^ "Limerick station" (PDF). Railscot - Irish Railways. Retrieved 2007-09-05. 
  21. ^ "Arup wins award for Living Bridge". Retrieved 2008-12-17. 
  22. ^ "LM085 Bachelor of Engineering in Civil Engineering". University of Limerick. Retrieved 2008-12-17. 
  23. ^ "WBTF Championships 2008". 
  24. ^ Staff. Anger erupts over Limerick murder, BBC 17 November 2008, "The mayor of Limerick, John Gilligan, says 'We're really a rugby-mad city. For us rugby is a huge thing.'"
  25. ^ Richard Harris. Limerick rugby full of heroes, The Daily Telegraph, 24 May, 2002
  26. ^ Limerick ready to create legends, The Independent, 27 May 2000. Brent Pope, a former Waikato No 8 and television pundit: "Most of the Leinster players don't have that same desire, ... Munster is very much the home of Irish rugby and the most like New Zealand."
  27. ^ "Limerick Regeneration Agency". 
  • The History of Limerick City by Sean Spellissy (1998)
  • The Government and the People of Limerick. The History of Limerick Corporation/City Council 1197-2006 by Matthew Potter (2006)
  • First Citizens of the Treaty City. The Mayors and Mayoralty of Limerick 1197-2007 by Matthew Potter (2007)
  • The Memoirs of John M. Regan, a Catholic Officer in the RIC and RUC, 1909–48, Joost Augusteijn, editor, District Inspector, Limerick 1920, ISBN 978-1-84682-069-4.

External links

Coordinates: 52°39′55″N 8°37′26″W / 52.6652°N 8.6238°W / 52.6652; -8.6238

Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikitravel

Limerick (Irish: Luimneach) [1] is a city in Ireland's Shannon Region.

King John's Castle on the River Shannon
King John's Castle on the River Shannon

Riverside City

Limerick is a riverside city of modest size, and is probably Ireland's last unspoiled city. Limerick is situated in the heart of Ireland's beautiful Shannon Region. The city overlooks the majestic and historic King John's Castle which is perched on its Shannon river bank. A city of many contrasts, it has managed to successfully blend the modern with the historic. It offers many cultural attractions, including cinema, theatre, museums, concerts, walking tours, boat rides and a wide variety of sports amenities. There is the lively atmosphere in traditional pubs, discos and restaurants. Being centrally located, it is not yet overrun with tourists as Cork or Galway are in the region.


A Viking town

The city was founded by the Vikings in 922 AD. The Vikings thrived in the village but they were overthrown in 968 AD. The Vikings fought the city back again in 969 AD. It wasn't until the 1020 AD, that native Limerick folk again recaptured and claimed their town. From that time period, the Vikings became part of the fabric of the town and integrated into the Irish society. Limerick of today benefits from their artistry, technological skills and seamanship.

Through the Middle Ages

The English (Anglo-Normans) colonised the city in 1172 AD and changed everything. St Mary's Cathedral was built in 1194 AD. Limerick's architecture boomed, King John ordered the construction of his fortress King John's Castle in 1205 AD, a fine specimen of fortified Norman architecture and Thomond Bridge which was for centuries the only bridge crossing the River Shannon.

The Treaty Stone perched on Thomond Bridge
The Treaty Stone perched on Thomond Bridge

The English settled in King's Island, called "Englishtown". The Irish were moved to "Irishtown", located on the other side of the Abbey River. A huge stonewall was erected around "Englishtown" in this period, known as "the walls of Limerick" and now is a famous traditional Irish dance. Limerick developed and became a very prosperous port and trading center exporting and importing all around Europe. 1171 AD a nunnery was founded. The Trinitarian Abbey was built in 1230 AD, this was the Trinitarian order's only established monastery in Ireland. The Scottish clans in 1315 AD attempted to invade Limerick and around 1320 AD Edward Bruce took Limerick once again. This occupation was defeated by the English in 1318 AD. A few hundred years later another historic moment occurred in Limerick, The Treaty of Limerick was signed to end the Irish war between the Jacobites and the supporters of William of Orange and it also ended the Siege of Limerick. They were signed on the Treaty Stone, which is perched now on a pedestal at the foot of Thomond Bridge.

Modern Times

Limerick of the early 20th century was very much a growing agricultural town. The Peoples Park was developed in 1876 and later tourism became a major focus and technology industries flourished. A state library and museum was built in 1906 with the Limerick Art Gallery being constructed in 1948. In 1972 the University of Limerick opened. In 1976, The Hunt family offered their collection to the nation to what has become the Hunt Museum. In 1981, the Beltable Arts Centre opened its curtains for everyone. In 1984 Limerick's National Technology Park opened its doors. During the late 20th century and early 21st century a great investment went into refurbishing and restoring Limerick's historic buildings. The 'renaissance' continued in in 1989, Arthur Quay was refurbished and a new walkway waterfront constructed. In 1987 O'Halloran Bridge was built and in 1989 Arthurs Quay Shopping Centre opened to the public for the first time.

The Living Bridge at UL
The Living Bridge at UL

Durineg the 80's, the Potato Market, and the Milk Market were refurbished, the Milk Market will have another upgrade in 2010. The old Bishops Palace,was totally rebuilt to its former glory. In 1991, a new tourist information office was commissioned and tied in nicely with a new visitors centre to showcase King John's Castle. 1994 saw Kings Island refurbished. Steamboat Quay was refurbished and a new hotel and apartments were built in the region. In 1999, the new Abbey Bridge opened to the public. 1999 saw the opening of the Georgian House in Pery Square region of the city. The stunning Living Bridge was contructed in 2007 by the Eiffel Engineering of Paris, (the team behind the the Eiffel Tower, Statue of Liberty), it's an iconic 350m long footbridge over the River Shannon at the University of Limerick. Presently, it is planned to refurbish and renew the Park Canal and upgrade all amenities on the Shannon river. A €350m 40-unit shopping mecca, the Opera centre, named in honour of Limerick's famous 18th century soprano singer Catherine Hayes is scheduled for completion in 2012.


Limerick has spawned many great writers and poets. Among those were Michael Hogan, the Bard of Thomond to Jim Kemmy and Maureen Sparling to the late and great writer Frank McCourt whose pulitzer prize winning Angela's Ashes, 'Tis and Teacher man were huge international bestsellers.

Music and Film

Limerick has a very active music scene, which has produced such popular bands/musicians from as Dolores O'Riordan, The Cranberries and Noel Hogans' MonoBand, The Hitchers, world-renowned electronic musician Richard D. James, known as Aphex Twin. It is also home to comedians D'Unbelievables (Pat Shortt & Jon Kenny) which entertained with many TV shows and Christmas specials, other famous personalities include the Hollywood actor Richard Harris and TV presenter Terry Wogan.

A number of films and movies have been produced and recorded in the city including the Alan Parker's Hollywood adaptation of Angela's Ashes starring Robert Carlyle and Emily Watson. It is the setting for the contemporary coming-of-age drama Cowboys & Angels and Robert Cunningham's gritty Somebody's Daughter.

Thomond Park, Limerick and River Shannon
Thomond Park, Limerick and River Shannon

Get in

By plane

Shannon Airport [2] serves Limerick and is located just 25km along the N18. Shannon Airport is an International Airport that services locations both within Europe and to the United States. Daily flights from Shannon Airport to New York, Newark and Chicago are operated by Delta, Aer Lingus and Continental Airlines while Ryanair mainly services destinations in the UK and Europe.

By bus

Limerick City is served very well by Bus Eireann [3] who operate services to and from Limerick city to Athlone, Balbriggan, Cork, Drogheda, Dublin, Dundalk, Galway, Navan, Kilarney Sligo and Waterford.

From Galway and Cork is served by Citylink's bus service [4].

By train

Limerick is connected to the Irish Rail [5] network by Colbert Station which is on Parnell Street in Limerick City. Limerick City is connected by rail (either directly or indirectly) with the main towns of Belfast, Dublin, Rosslare, Cork, Tralee and Ennis.

Car rental

It makes sense to pick up a rental car at Shannon Airport if you are arriving by plane as it's much more convenient. If you require to collect in the city, call up your preferred car rental dealer and they will arrange your rental pick up. All the major car rental companies in Ireland have locations at Shannon. Shannon Airport is easily accessible from Limerick by Bus or Taxi services.

Birds eye view of The Living Bridge, UL, Limerick City
Birds eye view of The Living Bridge, UL, Limerick City
  • Avis Rent a Car - +353 (0)61 715600
  • Budget Rent a Car Ireland [6] - +353 (0)61 471361
  • Dollar Car Hire [7] - +353 (0)61 471770
  • Dooley Car Rentals - +353 (0)61 471098
  • Europcar - +353 (0)61 701200
  • Hertz Rent a Car [8] - +353 (0)61 471639
  • Irish Car Rentals - +353 (0)61 472649
  • Malone Car Rental [9] - +353 (0)61 471770
  • Thrifty Car Rental Shannon [10] - +353 (0)61 471770

Get around

Public Bus services are available in Limerick but the city is quite contained and everything is within walking distance.


Limerick has a host of attractions. See the Limerick Coordination Office [11] for a full events guide

  • King John's Castle, located on King's Island (in the heart of Limerick City), [12] Open: 10-16.30 Jan/Feb/Nov/Dec, 9.30-17.00 Mar/Apr, 9.30-17.30 May–Oct.
  • Thomond Park, one of the Ireland's most famous sporting arenas, and the proud home of Munster Rugby, who are twice crowned European champions and have beaten the world's best in this stadium including the mighty All Blacks. Recently renovated to international standards, re-opened in November 2008. It has a new modern music bar and great facilities for young and old. You must experience a rugby game, even if you like sport or not, when you visit to witness its often talked about unique atmosphere.[13]
  • St. John's Cathedral This impressive church has the tallest spire in Ireland at an amazing 94m (308 ft) and is a must visit. Built in 1861 and designed by the architect Philip Charles Hardwick, it has been in continuous use since. The most recent restoration work carried out was in 2003/2004 on the roof and exterior stonework. It is a Catholic cathedral, the city's other cathedral, St. Mary's Cathedral being Anglican. [14]
The Peoples Park, Limerick
The Peoples Park, Limerick
  • The Hunt Museum, Rutland Street, phone: +353 61 312 833 (email:[15], fax +353 61 312834) [16] Open 10-17:00 Mon-Sat, 14:00–17:00 Sun. (Adults €7.20, Concessions €5.80, Children €3.50)
  • St Mary's Cathedral located on King's Island, phone: +353 61 416 238, [17]
  • Downtown Georgian Architecture
  • UL Arena for sports, walking by the lakes and crossing The Living Bridge.
  • Limerick Milk Market is a hive of activity at the weekend, everything under the sun is for sale, bargains galore, art, books, clothes, antiques, fresh food and even farmers milk! [18]
  • Peoples Park very central in Limerick, if you like romantic walks.
  • Daniel O'Connell monument. It's perched at the top of O'Connell street in the Georgian district.
  • The Treaty Stone on Thomond bridge.
St John's Cathedral: The tallest spire in Ireland
St John's Cathedral: The tallest spire in Ireland
  • The Hunt Museum offers a unique collection of treasures. Located in the historic Custom House and overlooking the Shannon, it features a diverse range of artefacts, from archeological finds to 20th century art exhibitions.
  • Limerick City Gallery of Art
  • Munster Rugby [19] — Rugby union side that compete in the Magners League alongside teams from Ireland, Scotland and Wales (and also Italy from 2010–11), and the Europe-wide Heineken Cup. Munster's main home is Thomond Park, recently expanded and renovated into an impressive modern facility. Munster supporters are among the most fanatical and yet respectful in all of sport—one long-standing tradition is absolute silence when a player, even an opponent, is kicking for goal.
  • St. John's Cathedral For the tallest spire in Ireland.
  • St. Mary's Cathedral
  • The Belltable
  • University Concert Hall
  • Angela's Ashes Walking Tour
  • Walk over the Shannon river and view King John's Castle
  • Shop in pedestrianised Cruise's Street
  • The Milk Market (weekend only)
  • The Potatoe Market (weekend only)
  • The Peoples Park
  • Univeristy of Limerick (Ollscoil Luimnigh), [20].  edit
  • Limerick Institute of Technology (Institúid Teicneolaíochta Luimnigh), [21].  edit
Cruise's pedestrianised Street
Cruise's pedestrianised Street
  • Crescent Shopping Centre, Dooradoyle
  • Cruises Street, City Centre
  • Topshop, Roches Street
  • a|wear, William's Street
  • French Connection, William's Street
  • Solo, Denmark Street
  • Concepts, Catherine Street
  • Brown Thomas, O'Connell Street
  • Debenhams, O'Connell Street
  • Fuschia Queen, Thomas Street
  • L'Occitane, Thomas Street
  • King's Shoes 34 O'Connell Street (corner of Roches Street and O'Connell St)
  • O'Mahony's booksellers, O'Connell Street[22]
  • Thornton's chocolate shop, Cruise's Street
  • River Island, Cruises Street
  • New Look, Cruises Street
  • In Vogue, Thomas Street
  • Eve's, Roches Street
  • Pennys, O'Connell Street
  • Tubes, Henry Street
  • River Deep Mountain High, Rutland Street
  • The Hunt Museum Shop, Rutland Street
Fun on the Shannon River
Fun on the Shannon River
  • Luigi Malones, O'Connell St [23]
  • Jasmine Palace, O'Connell St [24]
  • Copper and Spice, Cornmarket Row and Annacotty [25]
  • The Mexican, O'Connell St [26]
  • Thai Gourmet, O'Connell St [27]
  • Moll Darbys, Georges Quay [28]
  • Texas Stateout, O'Connell St [29]
  • Market Square, 74 O'Connell St
  • Brulees, 8 Henry St (on the corner of Henry and Mallow Street)
  • The Grove, The Grove, `11 Upper Cecil Street for yummy vegetarian food
  • Milano, Harvey's Quay
  • Fat Zoe's, Rutland Street
  • Eddie Rockets [30] Nice familiar will feel like being in Grease!
  • Bella Italia
  • La Piccola Italia, O'Connell Street
  • The Locke Bar, George's Quay
  • Harris Bar and Brasserie, Riverpoint Building
  • The Clubhouse, Pizzeria @ Trinity Rooms in the Granary
Dolan's Pub, a great place to catch live music
Dolan's Pub, a great place to catch live music
  • Nancy Blake's Pub, Denmark Street [31]
  • The Old Quarter, Denmark Street [32]
  • Flannerys Bar, Denmark Street.
  • Smyths, Denmark Street, [33]
  • Molly Malones, Ellen Street. Be careful with the bouncers
  • The Wicked Chicken, Alternative music venue, Baker Place [34]
  • Costello's Tavern, Alternative music venue, Dominic Street.
  • Jerry Flannerys Bar, Catherine Street.
  • Peter Clohessys Bar, Howleys Quay [35]
  • The Locke, Great outdoor drinking/eating spot, Georges Quay [36]
  • Micky Martins, Augustinian Lane.
  • Pier One, Sarsfield Street, [37]
  • Riddlers, Sarsfield Street.
  • Tom Collins's Oyster Saloon, Cecil Street (genuine old man's pub)
  • Dolans Pub, Dock road. Traditional Irish bar with live music [38]
  • Gleeson's (aka "The White House"), O'Connell Street.
  • Trinity Rooms, Michael Street, Award Winning Nightclub, Big Name Dj's from Mr. Scruff to Roger Sanchez, 3 rooms, vip areas [39]
  • Mojo's, Patrick Street, [40]
  • Aubars, Thomas Street, [41]
  • The Still House Carlsberg Sports bar, Thomas Street, [42]
  • Charlie Chaplin's, Cruises Street.
  • Bar3, Bedford Street, Gay Bar.
  • Jurys Inn Limerick (Limerick Hotel), Lower Mallow Street, Limerick, Ireland, (+353 61) 207000, [43]. From €59.  edit
  • Travelodge Limerick, Coonagh Roundabout, Ennis Road, +353 (0) 61 457 000 (), [44]. checkin: From 3PM, earlier check on request and charge of €10; checkout: 12 midday, late check out up to 3PM subject to availability and €10 charge. From €40.  edit
  • Annville B&B, Newtown, Castletroy (South-west of university.), +353 61 330023 (, fax: +353 61 330023), [45]. Quiet and nice B&B in the outskirts, friendly and helpful landlord, complete irish breakfast. Unlike advertised, not all rooms are ensuite, and the common bathroom is aging but otherwise the facilities are quite fine. €40 single/€60 double. (52.66637,-8.53969) edit
  • Best Western Perys Hotel, Glentworth Street, +353 (0/61) 413822 (, fax: +353 (0/61) 413073), [46].  edit
  • The Castletroy Park Hotel, [47].  edit
  • Dairy Guest House, +353 (0/87) 6669186 (+353 (0/61) 514699), [50].  edit
  • The George Boutique Hotel, [51].  edit
  • The Kilmurry Lodge, Castletroy (near University), +353-61-501072, [53]. Pleasant, ivy-covered red brick hotel on the outskirts of town, manages to feel small and cozy although it's actually rather large. Pub, restaurant and nightclub on grounds. From €89 B&B.  edit
  • The Railway Hotel, Parnell Street (Opposite the rail and bus station), +353 (0/61) 413653 (, fax: +353 (0/61) 419762), [58]. Singles from €45.  edit
  • The Sarsfield Bridge Hotel, [59].  edit
  • South Court Hotel & Suites, [60].  edit
  • Strand Hotel Limerick, Ennis Road, +353 61 421 800, [61]. 4 Star hotel in the heart of Limerick City Centre, with leisure facilities and meeting rooms.  edit
  • Absolute Hotel Limerick [63] Sir Harry's Mall, Limerick, Ireland, +353 61 463-600, [64]. Four Star hotel luxury spa hotel in the heart of Limerick City Centre.
  • Adare Manor, [65]
  • Castletroy Park, [66]
  • Glin Castle, [67]
  • Hilton Limerick Hotel, [68]
  • Marriott Limerick, Henry Street, +353 (0/61) 448700 (fax: +353 (0/61) 448701), [69]. checkin: 3PM; checkout: Noon. € 140+ per night.  edit

Stay safe

Limerick being a modest sized city, the city centre itself is safe and cosy, even at nights and weekends. Since it is the home of many universities; weekends and weekdays - pubs usually fill up with students of all sorts from all over the world, some getting way too drunk.

Generally as is the case of any of the modern cities in Ireland, use your common sense and exercise caution and be vigilant of bad or unruly behaviour. Walk away and report.

If you do run into trouble, the police station (Gardai) is on Henry Street in the city center. The number of the local police (Gardai) is +353 61 212 400, note: a non-emergency number. The emergency dial is the standard 112 or 999, as always.

This is a usable article. It has information for getting in as well as some complete entries for restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please plunge forward and help it grow!

1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010
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From LoveToKnow 1911

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Up to date as of January 15, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary

See also limerick


Wikipedia has an article on:


Proper noun




  1. A county in the Republic of Ireland.
  2. A town in the county of Limerick


Simple English

Urbs Antiqua Fuit Studiisque Asperrima Belli
"An ancient city well versed in the arts of war"
Irish Grid Reference
Province: Munster
County: County Limerick
Area: 20.79 km²
Population (2006) 90,778
City: 52,560
Suburbs: 38,218

Limerick (Irish: Luimneach from Lom na nEach, meaning the Bare place of the Horses) is a city and the county seat of County Limerick in the province of Munster, in the midwest of the Republic of Ireland. The city lies on the River Shannon, with three main crossing points near the city centre and has a 2006 population of 91,000 inhabitants within its urban area.

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