About Us

The Woodquay or Barrachalla as it is known locally from the Irish “Barr an Caladh” (Head of the Port) is one of the earliest inhabited areas of Galway. It is so called because Fuel (wood & turf) for the city was landed there by boat.

Woodquay Hostel FrontEarlier maps shows the Woodquay area outside the city walls and composed of at least three islands (tributaries of the Corrib). The land was poor and marshy and on these the poor natives eked out a precarious existence. By the turn of the century however Woodquay was evolving into its present day form.
Today Woodquay is fully integrated with the old town (the old city wall is long since gone) and the road leading to the Salmon Weir carries most of the city’s east – west traffic. Yet it’s tree laden walk has been classed as one of the nicest scenic areas in the city and well worth a visit by both tourists and locals alike. The present day hostel was formally known as St Anne’s and is one of a terrace called St Brendan’s. It was built on the Dolan Estate. Very Rev Father Dooley P.P. St Nicholas North and East built the Woollen Mills in Newtownsmyth in 1903 and afterwards built St Brendan’s Road and St Brendan’s Terrace area in 1905-1907 for the employees of the Mills.

The Woodquay Hostel was taken over in 1991 and is a family run hostel who pride themselves on the facilities and services provided. The hostel is owned by Julie Mulryan-Healy. Julie hails originally from Barna, Glenamaddy and although she has lived in the UK for over 35 years, where she is in business. But she spends a lot of her time in Galway .

The Hostel now sponsors a local Galway girls Football team.
Julie bought the building in 1991 when it was then a private guesthouse. Julie transformed the building and turned it into a hostel – thus one of the very few in Galway at that time. Galway started growing and became one of the fastest growing cities in Europe. Julie spends a lot of her time travelling where she has many more interests. One of her greatest hobbies is astrology and of course sport – in particular the Maroon & White – Football and Hurling of her native county and indeed all GAA games.

She has run a very successful pub in Reading – “The Battle Inn” for over 30 years and prides herself being involved in many activities. She has successfully being involved in both Radio and TV in Reading and is of an inquiring mind. Should you wish to get in touch with her you can do so through this website.