Elevated on 420 acres along the banks of the Boyne River, the Lands at Dowth host a wealth of Neolithic and medieval archaeology and is part of the Brú na Bóinne Unesco World Heritage Site.
Acquired by the Brennan Family in 2013, the Lands and Dowth Hall have since been undergoing phased restoration. It was during the course of this initial exploration that a new Megalithic passage tomb dating back some 5,500 years was discovered in partnership with Dublin City University medieval historian Dr Matthew Stout and Boyne Valley archaeologist Dr Geraldine Stout.
The new Dowth burial chamber is about 40m in diameter and half the size of nearby Newgrange and regarded as one of the most significant discovery from the Megalithic period within the past 50 years. To date, two burial chambers have been discovered within the western part of the main passage tomb, over which a large stone cairn (c.40m diameter) was raised. The six kerbstones that have been identified so far would have formed part of a ring of stones that followed the cairn perimeter. One kerbstone is heavily decorated with Neolithic carvings and represents one of the most impressive discoveries of megalithic art in Ireland for decades. The excavations are ongoing and the public were invited to view the newly discovered tomb during National Heritage Week (Aug 21st-24th)
Since 2016, the Lands have been opened to the public on numerous occasions including Family Fun Days which saw over 1,200 people walk a trail discovering the Lands archaeology and architecture and learned how food and farming have influenced the landscape over the past 6,000 years.
Dowth Hall hosted racing as early as the 1700’s. Reinstating this proud tradition in 2015, Devenish took the opportunity to partner with the Meath & Tara Committee to host the Autumn Point-to-Point at Dowth. It was a special occasion for all concerned, and the first time that Dowth had been open to the public in many years. The return of racing to the ‘Old Racecourse’ restores the sporting heritage as part of the wider estate restoration project.
Dowth has always had a strong connection with racing, and was first owned by the Netterville family designed the Racecourse in the 1700’s. It was later sold to the Gradwell family who bred the horse ‘Drogheda’, winner of the 1898 Aintree Grand National. More recently the Cameron Family owned Dowth. Tony Cameron, who was an accomplished jockey and equestrian, competed at two Olympics in Three Day Eventing, Rome 1960 and Tokyo 1964. Perhaps his greatest achievement in the saddle was finishing 4th on Gay Navaree in the 1962 Aintree Grand National. We are delighted that Tony has returned as acting steward at Dowth Point-to-Point.
Come racing on Sunday October 28th and be part of the story of Dowth!