Farm Ireland

Saturday 17 February 2018

Weather to parking - Everything you need to know before going to The National Ploughing Championships Newsdesk Newsdesk

Approximately 300,000 people will be travelling to Screggan near Tullamore this week for The 85th National Ploughing Championships.

In what is the biggest outdoor festival of any kind in Europe, The Championship runs from Tuesday until Thursday in the County Offaly venue.

Read more: INM's food, music, debate and fashion at Ploughing

This year's event is expected to be bigger than ever, so you better start making plans now.

Here is a quick rundown of everything you need to know about the festival.


Tickets on the gate cost €20 for an adult and €15 for students and seniors. The site will open from 9am until 6:30pm each day, while the actual ploughing will take place between 10:30am and 2.30pm daily.


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Met Éireann are predicting a dry opening to The Ploughing Championships, with Tuesday set to be very pleasant weather-wise.

Highest temperatures will range between 15-17C and there will be very little wind.

Unfortunately, the news is not as positive for Wednesday. A band of rain is travelling from the West and is set to hit Tullamore by early afternoon and stay for most of the evening.

Thursday will also be wet and Met Éireann have also indicated that it will be quite cold, with temperatures dropping as low as 13C.

Driving and parking

Routes to the venue are divided into colours depending on what part of the country you are travelling from.

AA Roadwatch gives the following information for those driving to the event. 

BLUE ROUTE – Traffic from Cork/ Munster

Traffic travelling northbound on the M8 will exit at Junction 6 Thurles and on towards Thurles before heading towards Birr on the N62.

There, traffic will join the N52 and travel north to the event site at Screggan.

Parking: Patrons on this route will park in the designated BLUE car parks on the left and right hand side next to the event grounds.

GREY ROUTE – Traffic from South East/ Kilkenny

Traffic travelling from Kilkenny or the South East will travel north along the N77 via Abbeyleix to Portlaoise.

It will then be directed through Clonminham and onto the N80 to Mountmellick. It will then take the Clonaslee Rd (R422) and Killurin Rd (R421) before being directed to the event site at Screggan.

Parking: Patrons on this route will park in the designated GREY car parks beside the event grounds at Screggan.

BROWN ROUTE- Traffic from Limerick, Kerry and Southwest

Traffic travelling northbound on the M7 will exit at Junction 26 Nenagh West and travel along the N52 towards Borrisokane.

In Borrisokane, traffic will take the N65 towards Portumna and then the Cloghan Rd (R438). In Cloghan, turn right to the event (R357).

Parking: Those on this route will park in the designated BROWN car parks beside the event grounds at Screggan.

PURPLE ROUTE- Traffic from Dublin

Traffic from Dublin should use the M4/M6 westbound and exit at Junction 5 Tullamore. You’ll then head onto the N52 towards Tullamore.

Traffic will then travel via Durrow (you’ll pass by the GAA Pitch), the Clara/ Tullamore Rd (R420) and then get the shuttle service to the site.

Parking: Patrons on this route will park in the designated PURPLE car park.

PINK ROUTE – Traffic from the North

Traffic from the North will travel via Mullingar and onto the N52 towards Tyrellspass.

It will travel to Kilbeggan via the Old N6 (R446), onto the Clara Rd (R436), the local Durrow Rd (L2009) and then join the Tullamore/ Clara Rd (R420). At Coolnahiley, traffic will be directed to parking beside the event grounds.

Parking: Patrons travelling this route will park in the designated PINK car parks beside the event grounds at Screggan.

GREEN ROUTE – Traffic from the West

Traffic travelling from the west will exit the M6 motorway at Junction 6 Moate East towards Moate.

It will then travel via the Ballycumber Rd and join the Ballycumber/ Clara Rd (R436) towards Rahan before being directed onto the local Mucklagh Rd (L2011) towards the event site.

Parking: Patrons travelling this route will park in the designated GREEN car parks on the right hand side of the local Mucklagh Rd (L2011) just beside the event grounds at Screggan.

Public Transport

Iarnód Éireann provide regular services to Tullamore, via the Dublin to Galway/ Westport line, while Bus Eireann will be providing a regular shuttle bus to the site at Screggan from the train station.

The below services run every day of the Ploughing:

Departing Galway: 6:30am, 7:30am and 9:30am

Departing Westport: 5:20am & 7:15am and leaving Ballina at 7:50am

Departing Dublin: 7:35am and 9:25am to Tullamore

Departing Cork: 7am and 8am

Kerry departing Tralee: 5:55am and 7am

Kerry departing Killarney: 6:27am and 7:37am

Further details available on

There are also regular bus services to and from Tullamore station. For further details, visit


There will be more 1,500 exhibitors from home and abroad at the event and the public will have plenty of opportunities to spend money at them, with four ATMs available on site.

There will also be seven designated rest areas, so you can take the weight off your feet after walking some of the 25km of walkway panels which have been layed.

There will also be six blocks of toilets, with several portaloos located at each one.

Online Editors