The Augustinians came from Clare Priory in Suffolk around 1290 having been invited over by their patron Thomas, Lord Offaly, Justiciary of Ireland. Dungarvan was attractive to the McGraths and O'Briens, who were eager to find a strong refuge and they set up an Augustinian Abbey in 1290 AD. At the Dissolution of the Monasteries in 1541 it was stated that the Friary was in use as the parish church. It was leased to James Walshe, constable of the castle, in 1551. The Abbey buildings were ruined after the Cromwellian attack on Dungarvan. The present Catholic Church, St. Augustine's Church was built on the foundations of the Abbey and incorporates fragments from it including the coat of arms on the west wall.
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