This NATIONAL MONUMENT is Desmond Hall located in Newcastle West. co.Limerick. It was built between the 13th & 15th centuries. This area preserves many of Ireland’s surviving medieval halls which were used by the Earls of Desmond for banqueting and entertainment but this is regarded as the finest. The Hall, the vaulted lower chamber and adjoining tower were all constructed during the 15th century on the remains of a 13th century structure of similar size. Its restored medieval features include and oak musicians’ gallery an a limestone hooded fireplace. The town has a turbulent history after being sacked in 1302 and destroyed in 1315. Two of the Earls of Desmond died here, Garrett (better known as Gearóid Iarla) in 1399, and James, the 8th Earl, in 1462. Later during the reign of Elizabeth I, three battles were fought near here and tradition says that many members of the Knights Templar were also killed here. The motto for the town is ‘As Dúchas Dóchas’ which translates to ‘Our Hope springs from our Traditions’.