The Barrow Experience

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Past, present and future of the Barrow Valley brought to life

The Barrow Experience is a wonderful and unique series of nine interconnecting gardens which bring to life the history, folklore and heritage of the beautiful Barrow Valley.

It is situated in the grounds of BEAM Services, a training centre for people with intellectual disabilities based at Regent Street, Bagenalstown Co. Carlow, on a picturesque site that bounds the canal off the River Barrow.

The Barrow Experience was developed with two key objectives in mind.  Firstly, we wanted to provide a healthy and therapeutic working environment for the members attending the BEAM Training Centre. while developing a beautiful water-fronted site into a major tourism driven initiative.

Our second objective was to develop a vibrant commercial project, supported by the entire community, which would not only help integrate people with intellectual disability, but also help attract visitors and tourists to the area.

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Take a walk through time at the Barrow Experience

The Barrow Experience is an important initiative in preserving the wonderfully rich history, folklore and heritage of the Barrow Valley.

The intricately linked series of gardens was designed in-house by Director of Services, John Murphy, and the finished design draws its inspiration from local history, architecture and mythology.

There are nine individual gardens within the Barrow Experience – Dinn Righ, Druids’ Wood, Potager Garden, Monastic Courtyard, Convent Garden, Railway Garden, Water Garden, Co-operation Garden and the French Garden.

The gardens represent both an active, healthy environment for our members to work in, and a therapeutic environment to relax in – along with the general public, who are always welcome.

And to broaden its impact in the broader community, the Barrow Experience will include an innovative project-based interactive schools programme which should be of immense value to primary schools in the county and beyond.

Courses available:

Fetac Level 3 – Growing Organic Vegetables

Fetac Level 2 – Tourism Awareness

Some highlights of the Barrow Experience

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Come on in – for a whole variety of reasons

The perfect photographic venue: In just a single setting, this unique garden landscape allows the photographer nine separate and unique backgrounds in which to build a portfolio of any given event.  It is a wonderful photographic backdrop for occasions such as:

  • First Communion
  • Confirmation
  • Weddings
  • Corporate Events

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An exceptional backdrop for courses

We will use our meeting room, toilet facilities and coffee shop to stage courses at week-ends throughout the year.  These courses include subject matter such as:

For Adults: Celtic Retreat; Meditation Weekends; Journey of Self-discovery; History of Celtic Ireland; Calligraphy Workshop; Circle Dancing.

For secondary students: Journey of self-discovery; Time for reflection; Quite Meditation; Communications; Team Building; Celtic History.

For primary students: Creative Art, The Celts; Nature; The Druids; Environment; Mythology.

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