Clare County Library
Clare Places: Towns & Villages
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Historical Background

Guy's Directory 1893
ITA Survey 1942/3

Ruan is a small village situated close to Dromore Lake. It derives its name from "Ruan", an old Irish term for the alder tree which was used in olden times to dye wool red. The parish of Ruan-Dysert on the fringes of the Burren is an area steeped in history and lore.

Samuel Lewis, writing in 1837, tells us that "Fairs are held at Ruan on June 17th and September 26th, the latter being one of the principal sheep fairs in the county. At Dysert and Ruan are stations of the constabulary police". He goes on to say that "About 660 children are educated in two public schools at Dysert and Ruan, and about 70 in a private school". In more recent years the opening of the marts led to the demise of the fairs which had brought a wealth of colour and excitement to the village.

Ruan SchoolA new school was opened on the outskirts of the village in 1977 and the revamped old building remains in service as the local Community Centre. The Community Hall provides a focal point for local activities such as boxing, badminton and social events.

The area has a rich cultural and sporting tradition with Irish music and hurling receiving special attention.