Ballincollig is a vibrant town, now a rapidly growing satellite town of Cork City. It has numerous heritage sites including the Ballincollig Royal Gunpowder Mills which was first established in 1794 by a prominent Cork citizen, Charles Leslie. The British Board of Ordnance took over the site in 1805 and the Mills were expanded and transformed into one of the most up-to-date industrial complexes in Ireland, in the mid- nineteenth century.
The Mills finally closed in 1903 and the site has now become one of Ireland’s most impressive Regional Parks covering an area of 130 acres with many of the buildings formerly used in the manufacture of gunpowder to be seen as ruins, dotted throughout the park. Ballincollig’s Regional Park is open daily to the public and offers scenic walks by the River Lee, woodland and the waterways which were once part of the Gunpowder Mills transport system.
In the early 1800s, a military barracks was built at Ballincollig to protect the supplies of gunpowder. It too had a long history but it has now been developed into Ballincollig Shopping Centre with some of the original buildings preserved within the complex. The high stone walls, associated with the barracks are still visible on the north side of the main street of the town.
To the south west of the town, there are ruins of a Medieval Castle. This castle has a rich history associated with it and its slender tower and curtain walls can be seen from the Ballincollig By-Pass.