In 916 an expedition of Danes sailed up
the Bandon river, causing havoc. Old place-names in the area
close to the present town of Bandon, place-names such as Dundanair
(meaning the stronghold of the Danes) and Danesfort, would seem to
indicate that they continued to control the area for some time.
Subsequently that territory was ruled by the O'Mahony Clan.
Towards the end of the 16th century, these lands were
confiscated by the Crown and were acquired by Richard Boyle, Earl of
Cork, who acquired a huge amount of land throughout Munster. It
was he who established the town of Bandon, and set about making it
impregnable, because the natives were not friendly.
The walls that he built around the town
were nine feet thick and thirty feet high or more. The area
enclosed by the walls was about 27 acres. The builders of the
walls received two and a half pence per day, eventually raised
to three pence per day after they had agitated for more.
Times change; the walls have
disappeared; the town has expanded and flourished. The local
people are delighted to welcome strangers to their town which they
regard as "The Gateway to West Cork".