So, what happened to Wolfe Tone Park (St Mary's Churchyard), Dublin?

The graveyard here became so overcrowded by the mid-nineteenth-century that ‘in order to make room for others, bodies were taken up in absolute state of putrefaction, to the great and very dangerous annoyance of the vicinity.’

By the 1940s, the large churchyard was used as a playground, with the headstones removed to the south end of the yard.

In April 1966, the Church of Ireland sold the graveyard to Dublin Corporation (now Dublin City Council) which later developed the site now known as Wolfe Tone Memorial Park. The park was laid out in a traditional formal style retaining the high defensive railings and placing the headstones around the perimeter.

Wolfe Tone Park, 1975

1998: As part of the HARP Urban Renewal Project and in the context of the 200th anniversary of 1798 and Wolfe Tone’s association with the area, Dublin Corporation organised an international competition inviting ideas on the re-design of Wolfe Tone Memorial Park. The design competition was co-sponsored by the Royal Institute of Architects in Ireland and the Irish Landscape Institute.

Wolfe Tone Park, 2005

The resulting 1998 development has proved to be a monumental failure with the park quickly becoming popular with drug dealers, vandals, unsuspecting tourists, emergency vehicles, thugs and the lucrative Dublin City Council car clamping operation.

After the damage done to the park by a prolonged televised event in 2006, The Box, Dublin City Council felt justified in removing the remaining grass from the park. Residents were assured that the park would be reinstated; nine years later the residents are still waiting for DCC to honour their commitment.

In the meantime, a spurious business initiative (BID) is attempting to re-brand "Wolfe Tone Park" as "Wolfe Tone Square" in an effort to lower expectations of the space and to help promote their dreadfully attended tacky and offensive events in "The Square".

The Wolfe Tone Park Community have no commercial interest in the space and are hereby demanding DCC to act in the interest of the citizens; else, step aside and allow the Office Of Public Works take control as they do in Phoenix Park & St Stephens Green.

Wolfe Tone Park, 2015

Wolfe Tone Park, 2016

Wolfe Tone Park, 2017

 Public Opinion

All comments from Dublin City Council website.
Peter Ray Mon, 7 Jul, 2014
I agree with the comments regarding the changing of this bit of parkland greenery in the middle of the city , and regrettably being changed into a civic continental style piazza. What a shame !! Great memories of a childhood in more innocent times.

Patrick O'Reilly Fri, 27 Jun, 2014
I was born on Capel Street in 1963 and played in this little park every day... We also played football on Wolf Tone Street and adjoining streets, we played handball in the handball alley on Green Street .... Wonderful and happy innocent days in north inner city Dublin.

Harriet Browne Thu, 16 Feb, 2012
EEEEEK! It's an Incredibly bland looking space now, how was it allowed. Vanishing Dublin indeed. So great to see all these old photographs though.

Noel Douglas Mon, 29 Aug, 2011
I used to love hanging out their [sic] its gone now what were they thinking.., paved over the graves.

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Wolfe Tone Park Community

Wolfe Tone Park

The Wolfe Tone Park Community is a non-commercial community-based initiative established to protect Wolfe Tone Park.

  Full Restoration of Wolfe Tone Park as a non-commercial green space  (c.2017)

  Protect the park from commercial targeting  (2016)

  Protect the park from DCC/BID 'Tram Cafe' proposal  (on-going)

  Monitor any proposals or plans for the park  (on-going)

  Protect the park from 2017 DCC/BID 'Frankenstein' renovation (on-going)

  Inclusion of Park Restoration in Dublin City Draft Development Plan 2016-2022  (16-Sept-15)

  Prevent commercial vehicles from parking in the public space (21-Dec-15)

  Secure the Park Status of Wolfe Tone Park (not Square) (21-Dec-15)

  Prevent amplified music festivals taking place in the park  (01-Nov-15)

  Removal of DCC 'mobile' staff toilets from west side of the park  (15-Oct-15)

  Removal of BID/DublinTown kiosks from within the park  (01-Oct-15)

  Removal of commercial furniture from within the park  (10-Nov-15)

  Prevent Dublin City Council vehicles from vandalising old tombstones around the park  (16-Sept-15)

  Establish direct contact with DCC management regarding park condition & neglect  (01-July-15)