Dunmore East is a postcard perfect village with a sprinkling of thatched cottages and breath taking views. The village has been a popular holiday resort for many years.
Iron Age people established a promontory fort overlooking the sea s. Henceforth the place was referred to as Dun Mor, the Great Fort. Fish was an important part of the people’s diet, and for hundreds of years a fishing community lived here.
In about 1640, Lord Power of Curraghmore, who owned a large amount of property in the area, built a castle on the cliff overlooking the strand about two hundred metres from St. Andrew’s Church. The castle was falling into ruin by the middle of the next century and now just one tower remains.
In Smith’s history of Waterford, the village was mentioned as being a fishing port about the year 1745. The fishermen’s homes were situated in the Lower Village near the Strand Inn and boats were launched from Counsellors Strand before the harbour was built. There is mention of a fleet of fifty fishing boats working from Dunmore East in 1776.
In about 1812 a decision was made at Westminister to create an entirely new landing point for passengers and mails coming to Ireland from London and southern England. The location selected was Dunmore East and £118,000 was set aside for the erection of a pier there. So in 1814 dramatic changes took place when Alexander Nimmo, the Scottish engineer commenced work on the new harbour at Dunmore to accommodate the packet station for ships, which carried the Royal Mail between England and Ireland. The work consisted mainly of a massive pier or quay with an elegant lighthouse at the end. Nimmo’s original estimate had been £20,000 but at the time of his death in 1832 £93,000 had been spent and the final cost was £108,000. By then (1837) the harbour had started to silt up, and the arrival of steam meant that the winding river could be negotiated easily, so the packet station was transferred to Waterford.
However the existence of what for that time was a great sheltered harbour meant that Dunmore East was to gradually become an important fishing port.
Amenities and attractions
The village is home to the Waterford Harbour Sailing Club that has dinghy and keelboat sailing and the Dunmore East Adventure Centre, which has many water sports events for adults and children. Located on the cliff top overlooking the bay is the panoramic golf course of Dunmore East renowned for its picturesque setting and challenging golf.
Sea angling and Diving is catered for by Dunmore East Angling Charters.
Dunmore East is also home to ONE OF Irelands best seafood restaurants The Stand Inn.