1798 rebellion commemorations get under way in Co Wexford

225th anniversary of the United Irishmen’s rebellion sees re-enactments of famous battles

A month-long series of events to mark the 225th anniversary of the 1798 rebellion has begun in Co Wexford.

Rebellion 225 events commemorate the battles involving the United Irishmen and British crown forces as the rebels, inspired by revolutions in France and America, fought to create a democracy that included Irishmen of every class or religious persuasion.

The timeline of Rebellion 225, from May 26th to June 21st, ties in with crucial dates in 1798, including battles that took place at Oulart Hill, the Three Rocks, Wexford, New Ross, Carrigbyrne, and Vinegar Hill.

There will be an immersive Rebellion Day on June 18th, which will see a battle encampment showcased, while the commemorations will culminate with The Longest Day at Vinegar Hill on June 21st.


The Three Bullet Gate commemoration takes place on June 11th and recalls a key part of the Battle of New Ross, one of the bloodiest days of the rebellion. Following the shooting dead by crown forces of Matthew Furlong, who bore a flag of truce, his comrades, led by John Kelly of Killane, rose up and attacked the town of New Ross through Three Bullet Gate. Such is its significance the gate is even mentioned in Amhran Na Bhfiann as the bearna bhaoil (gap of danger).

Former taoiseach Bertie Ahern has been asked to attend the Three Bullet Gate commemoration, having officially opened the Three Bullet Gate memorial park 25 years ago.

Mico Hassett, manager of the National 1798 Rebellion Centre and Enniscorthy Castle, said there were many key events from 1798 to remember. “We really want locals and visitors to Wexford to understand the significance of 1798 and to feel immersed in the whole experience of Rebellion 225 through our talks, workshops and re-enactments. There is much to remember and honour across Wexford from 1798, and we look forward to engaging with attendees about these hugely significant events in Irish history.”

Further information is available on visitwexford.ie/rebellion

Tim O'Brien

Tim O'Brien

Tim O'Brien is an Irish Times journalist