Heritage comprises of anything that one generation passes down to the next and plays a central role in shaping identity, of both people and place. Our heritage consists of aspects of the past that we value in the present and what we choose to pass on to future generations.
Heritage can be divided into three main strands:
Built Heritage: Archaeology, historical sites, buildings and vernacular features.
NaturalHeritage: Our waterways, landscapes, woodlands, bogs, uplands, native wildlife, insects, plants, trees, birds and animals.
Cultural Heritage: Tangible cultural heritage includes archaeological and heritage objects. Intangible cultural heritage includes the Irish Language, folklore, oral history, placenames, music, dance, sport, literature and customs.
Leitrim is a special place. It is the most rural county in Ireland and retains many features of its rural agricultural landscape. If you journey down our country roads you will be enchanted by the profusion of birdsong and stunning scenery that surrounds you. If you stop in our villages and towns you will be struck, not only by the vernacular character of our buildings, but by the warm and friendly people you encounter, who have an immense pride in their heritage and who have retained many cultural traditions which are thriving throughout the County.
The geology and topography of Leitrim varies significantly, from the table-like mountains and glacial glens in the Northern half of the county to the undulating drumlin landscape in the southern lowlands. This varied topography and the extensive rivers systems and loughs across the county have resulted in a mosaic of natural and man-made habitats and have influenced where people have chosen to settle and where our rich and well preserved archaeological heritage can now be found. It is within this natural and built landscape that our rural communities have fostered a rich cultural heritage, ranging from the distinctive style of Leitrim's traditional music to the local folklore passed down through the generations.
It is all of these things and countless others that make Leitrim’s heritage unique and which contributes so strongly to the identity of both people and place. However, not everything can be labeled heritage. Heritage consists of aspects of the past that we value in the present and that we choose to pass on to future generations. During this time of changing technologies, the Leitrim County Council Heritage Office aims to conserve and promote our natural, cultural and built heritage as a finite resource which contributes significantly to the maintenance of a healthy environment, sustainable farming, well-being, creativity and the creation of cultural and tourism jobs.