did you knowLimerick has a wide and varied history. We have compiled a series of our “Did you know” facts which we regularly post to our Facebook Page and Twitter Account.

Some of the facts below are humorous, some are tragic but they all are interesting in their own right. Read, Tell, Remember.

The previous in this series can be found at Did you know? Limerick Facts 4


  • The famed Limerick Lace was founded by Charles Walker who in 1829 brought 24 girls from England to instruct 300 Limerick women and children in lace making.
  • The last time the swivel section on Sarsfield bridge was open to traffic was in 1928 and it was officially closed in 1963.
  • There was a tradition in Limerick on a wedding day for an arrow to be shot into the Shannon.
  • On 18 December 1835, 15 year old Patrick O’Brien met his fate by being eaten by the crew of the “Francis Spaight”.
  • St. Mary’s Cathedral once housed “The Blue School” so called due to the Blue Coats of its students.
  • John P. Holland (1840-1914) the inventor of the submarine joined the Christian Brothers in Limerick in his youth.
  • Limerick born, Sir Thomas Myles, CB (20 April 1857—14 July 1937), President of the Royal College of Surgeons Ireland. Owned a yacht, the Chotah. In 1914, he was recruited (by James Creed Meredith) to help in the import guns for the Irish Volunteers.
  • The tower and spire of St. John’s Cathedral was designed in 1878 to stand 308 feet. Its base is 24ft square with walls 4ft thick. The spirelettes which stand at the top of the tower and the base of the spire are 30ft high. The limestone for the tower was quarried at Rosbrien.
  • Gerald Griffin (1803-1840), author of The Collegians, which was based on the Colleen Bawn story, at the height of his fame as a writer in the 1830s, burned all his manuscripts and joined the Christian Brothers.
  • Did you know: In the 1651 after Cromwell’s forces captured the City the Cathedral (St. Mary’s) was used as a stable for the army’s horses.