Lacken: (‘An Leacain’, meaning hillside or slope in Gaelic), nestles in the foothills of the Wicklow Mountains on the picturesque Lake Drive. The general area has been inhabited for thousands of years, as evidenced by the existence of prehistoric burial sites, bullauns, ringforts and many other archaeological discoveries.
Sitting 242m above sea level, for centuries hill sheep farming was the principal occupation in this part of west Wicklow. At the turn of the last century, tourism made a sizable contribution to Lacken’s economy, with day visitors from Dublin taking the Steam Tram to Blessington followed by a pony and trap to see the Poulaphouca Waterfall and to explore the King’s River Valley.
“From a slope over the majestic King’s river, which gives its name to the glen, and overlooking where it mingles its waters with the Liffey in the beautiful vale of Inchiclare, a valley affording a scene beauty not a whit inferior to the “Meeting of the Waters”, Ovaca, immortalised by Moore, and Lacken House Hotel, one of the finest highland hotels in Ireland within a short mile of them.”
– Kildare Observer, June 1906
During the 1798 rebellion, Lacken was a strategic area for the rebels who had two large encampments, one on Blackmore Hill, commanding views of most of Leinster and another on Whelp Rock, providing a quick escape if needed. Behind Whelp Rock on the flanks of Moanbane, the ‘98’ caves can still be found.
Lacken was a townland of an estimated 1543 acres, however approximately 48% of this land was lost upon the formation of the Poulaphouca Reservoir in the period 1937-1941. Today, the reservoir is commonly known as the Blessington Lakes and the community and visitors enjoy the picturesque setting created by this dramatic change to the landscape.
For further information, please visit www.lackenvillage.ie