With Europe’s longest unbroken stretch of beach as the backdrop, it’s easy to see why siblings Hugh and Niamh Darcy love running Morriscastle Strand Holiday Park. Well, they were also half-reared in the sand dunes during the summer months along with their brothers, Riain and Eoin, after parents Ed and Ria opened a Mobile home and Camping site here in 1969.
Today, ongoing hard work has made the award winning tourism business a true North Wexford and family success story – with 145 privately owned mobile homes, 100 spaces for Campervans, Touring Caravans and Motorhomes, and 40 camping sites. And, to celebrate their 50th year in business, the Darcys are busy creating a Glamping space with eight family Pods that will overlook the sea, opening up this season.
“We have three generations of families staying with us,” says Niamh, who is also on the board of the Irish Camping and Caravan Council. “We have families who camped with us at the very beginning, then moved on to touring caravans, and now they, their children and grandchildren are in mobile homes with us.
“Our proximity to Dublin is also an advantage as we are far way so that people feel they are on holidays but close enough to commute if needs be while they are here.
In the beginning
“Our dad used to bring kids from Dublin camping here and fell in love with the place. In 1969, he bought the land for the park from Mrs Somers and began to build a business with some of the most fabulous coastline views in North Wexford. In true family style, Mrs Somers became an integral part of the new business and, a real people person, she used to bake brown bread and make tea for holiday makers on a regular basis. She lived and worked side by side with the Darcy family for over 35 years.
Home from home
Today, that welcome is still a hallmark of Morriscastle Strand Holiday Park, and families need walk no more than a few metres to find everything they need to while away the weekend or the entire summer! Those facilities include the Reception, The Deck café and takeaway, the all-important Ice Cream Parlour, a shop, clubhouse for children’s activities, playgrounds, football pitch, tennis courts, and basketball hoops.
The park is back from the sightline of the coast, so visitors to the beach can still enjoy all that it has to offer, and the lucky people staying in the holiday park have the beach just minutes away.
A helping hand
For days when people want to stretch their legs, the park also advises people new to North Wexford on all of our amenities and wonderful places to visit. “We operate a mini tourist information service for visitors, we have all the brochures to the surrounding places like Kia Ora Mini Farm, Wells House and Gardens, Springmount Garden Centre, and more,” says Niamh, who is also an active member of the North Wexford Tourism Group. They also stock copies of the Irish Caravan, Camping and Motorhome Guide, so that people can make great accommodation choices as they tour around Ireland.
This information is invaluable to the park’s visitors who hail not just from Ireland, north and south, but also the UK, France, Spain, Switzerland, and the Netherlands.
“We love that the business is beside the beach and love the collaboration between the different businesses in North Wexford – that benefits us all.”
In the meantime, Niamh and brother Hugh continue to safeguard and build on Ed and Ria’s vision of a place for people to enjoy the splendour of Morriscastle beach and its fabulous sand dunes.
Interview: Deirdre O’Flynn
Photos: Niamh Darcy