WELLS, a parish, partly in the barony of GOWRAN, county of KILKENNY, but chiefly in that of IDRONE WEST, county of CARLOW, and province of LEINSTER, 2 miles (S. by W.) from Leighlin-bridge, on the road to Gowran; containing 1554 inhabitants. This parish is situated upon the south side of the river Barrow, and comprises 2633 statute acres, as applotted under the tithe act, the whole of which is in a highly improved state of cultivation. Here is a slate quarry. Fairs for general farming stock are held on Ascension-day and Sept. 11th. The seats are Ravindon, the residence of the Rev. S. T. Roberts 3 Barbage, of the Rev. T. Vigors3 and the Deanery-house, of the Hon. and Very Rev.
Dean Bernard. The living is a rectory, in the diocese of Leighlin, constituting, with the chapelry of Ballynochen, the corps of the deanery of Leighlin, and in the patronage of the Crown: the tithes amount to £392. 6. 2., and the gross income of the deanery to £448. 4. 1. j there are several small glebes, comprising 21 acres. The church, which formerly stood near the village of Royal Oak, was by act of council in 1807 removed to the site of the ancient chapel of Ballynochen, now a townland in the parish: it is a plain building in an elevated situation overlooking the Barrow, erected in 1810 by aid of a gift of £500 and a loan of £200 from, the late Board of First Fruits; the Ecclesiastical Commissioners have recently granted £256 for its repair.
In the R. C. divisions the parish is part of the txnion or district of Leighlin-bridge: the chapel is a large building.
The parochial school-house was built by aid of £60 from the incumbent: a female school is maintained by subscription, and there are two private schools, attended by about 140 children. The ruins of the former church at the Royal Oak are still visible; and near Ballynochen is a rath of considerable extent, called by the peasantry "the Maudlin Moat." from Lewis's Topographical Dictionary of Ireland, 1837.