Connecting the twin towns of Ballina and Killaloe is a thirteen arch stone bridge. The bridge connecting the counties of Clare and Tipperary has played a vital role in the development of the two towns.
The first evidence of a bridge at this site was recorded in 1054 by Turlogh O'Brien. It is thought that the bridge was made of wood, but it became damaged and washed away over the years. As such, construction and repair works were carried out over the years to create a stone bridge.
In 1797, records suggest that at the location of today's bridge was a stone bridge of 18 arches. However, records in 1838 say the bridge had 15 arches, other reports say the bridge had 13 or 19 arches.
Killaloe Bridge and the War of Independence
During the War of Independence in 1920, a shooting took place on the Killaloe Bridge. Three men from East Clare and one man from Galway were shot dead, after being captured by the British Army. The shooting was in retaliation for the burning of Scariff RIC Barracks in the months prior. There is a plaque commemorating the four men halfway across the bridge.
One of the arches on the bridge was replaced with an iron swivel bridge so that high-masted vehicles could pass underneath it. However, this was only tested once shortly after construction.