In 1838 a petition was made to move the county town to a more central point than Clonmel as the long journey to the southern part of the county was too much for many people further north make. It was particularly bemoaned by the gran jurors who had to attend twice yearly assizes in Clonmel.
The then MP for Clonmel opposed the petition and it was decided instead to divide the county into two 'ridings', north and south.
The main town of the south riding carried on as Clonmel, and Nenagh was designated as the main town of the north riding.
The Local Government Reform Act of 2014 joined both north and south to make a single county council.