On Conduit Lane, the tower of Blackfriars, a mid-thirteenth-century friary, is visible. The friary is known as Blackfriars as the Dominican order who built the friary, wore black habits. The Dominicans first settled in Waterford in 1226 and the site was requested as a gift by the citizens of Waterford.
Blackfriars was dissolved in 1540 by order of King Henry VIII. The friary was subsequently used as a courthouse from 1617 and as a theatre in 1746.
The Dominicans were an important asset to the city. They were an intellectual order who organised schools and educated the sons of the merchant class.
The remains of the tower and gateway are still visible and the space is occasionally used during Waterford city’s various festivals.