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Bandon

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Bandon is a town in County Cork, Ireland. It lies on the River Bandon between two hills. The name in Irish means Bridge of the Bandon, a reference to the origin of the town as a crossing-point on the river. In 2004 Bandon celebrated its quatercentenary. The town, sometimes called the Gateway to West Cork, had a population of 6,957 at the 2016 census. Bandon is in the Cork South–West constituency, which has five seats.

In September 1588, at the start of the Plantation of Munster, Phane Beecher of London acquired, as Undertaker, the seignory of Castlemahon. It was in this seignory that the town of Bandon was formed in 1604 by Phane Beecher's son and heir Henry Beecher, together with other English settlers John Shipward, William Newce and John Archdeacon. The original settlers in Beecher's seignory came from various locations in England. Originally the town proper was inhabited solely by Protestants, as a by-law had been passed stating "That no Roman Catholic be permitted to reside in the town". A protective wall extended for about a mile around the town. Written on the gates of Bandon at this time was a warning "Entrance to Jew, Turk or Atheist; any man except a Papist". A response was scrawled under the sign noting: "The man who wrote this wrote it well, for the same thing is writ on the gates of hell."

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