Sunday, 18 January 2015

News from Heritage Section Cork County Council

Hi All,

Hope each and every one of you had a wonderful Christmas and wishing you all the very best for 2015.

2014 was a most successful year from a heritage perspective. It saw a myriad of great events throughout the County, particularly during Heritage Week (the highest number of events yet in County Cork) and it was also very positive to see a significant increase in the funding of heritage through the Built Heritage Jobs Leverage Scheme (DAHG) and the operation of the Heritage Management Scheme by the Heritage Council. There is, as of yet, no news on the funding front for 2015, but as soon as there are any developments, details will be included in subsequent heritage email updates.

The Heritage Unit of Cork County Council also had a very productive year in 2014, and one of the highlights certainly was the launch of the “Heritage Houses of County Cork” publication. Many of you have already picked up a copy and thank you again to everyone involved in same and for all the positive comments to date as well. Thanks also to those of you who attended the launch on the 22nd of December and a special thank you also to the Library of Cork County Council for hosting the event. The Heritage Unit of Cork County Council is hopeful that a similar publication can be undertaken in 2015 and full details of same will be unveiled in the next few months. In the meantime, the Houses publication is available to purchase in numerous newsagents and bookshops throughout the County as well as online via the Skibbereen Heritage Centre Website –

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There are a couple of new developments on the heritage front which are now set out in the headlines below. In addition there are also a number of fascinating events over the coming weeks such as in Knockraha on Thursday 22nd, Castlemartyr and indeed Churchtown on Friday 30th and the launch of Cobh’s Lusitania Commemorations on February 1st February. A number of further exciting events are also scheduled including locations such as Ballincollig, Ballygarvan, Bantry, Blarney and Clonakilty.  See the events section below for more details.

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Attached is a calendar of the year’s upcoming heritage dates, commemorations and international observances which has been put together by the Heritage Unit. The purpose of this is to facilitate the planning ahead of a wide range of heritage events and hopefully some of you will find it of use/of interest. While this is not an "all inclusive" list it should provide a good summary of the year's many important dates. The planner is essentially a work in progress, should you be aware of any further local or County commemorative dates, by all means please do make contact and these dates will be added to the Planner. Same is hosted on the events section of

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The dates for Heritage Week 2015 have been recently announced (August 22nd to 30th inclusive) and the theme for Heritage Week this year is "Industrial and Design Heritage". According to the Heritage Council, "our shared industrial past is a story of change, development and creativity and of the men and women who were a part of that story whether as mill worker, a dock worker or the proud owner of a motor car. Industrial heritage engages all of us and has left a legacy in the buildings, records and memories of people across Ireland, a legacy that paved the way for how we live today". Industrial heritage is a phenomenal part of Cork's heritage, just take for example the Ballincollig Gunpowder Mills, which at over 130 acres, happens to be the largest industrial heritage site in Ireland.

In terms of organizing heritage week events we are most fortunate that there are dozens of seasoned veterans in the County of Cork - those who without fail, continue to expertly showcase and highlight the rich heritage and history of their local area. However, more and more recently, and most positive to see, is an increasing number of community groups also involved in promoting their locality's heritage. Whether a long established heritage group, or new to the fold, the Heritage Council has proposed a most useful "training day for event organisers" to take place on April 9th in Dublin Castle. This event will provide a great overview and insight into the many considerations of organizing a successful Heritage Week event and more information can be obtained by emailing

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The Cork County Library and Arts Service have just launched their "From the Well" Short Story competition. The competition is open to people aged 18 or over, who are registered library members. To mark the UN's International Year of Light 2015, the theme of this year's short story competition is "Light". Entrants may interpret the theme in its broadest sense and the closing date for entries is Friday 20th February 2015. Stories are not to exceed 2000 words and must be fictional. Hopefully we might see a number of fictional stories with a heritage flavour entered in the competition. For further details please see the attacheddocument.

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The January/February edition (27th issue) of Irish Lives Remembered Genealogy e-Magazine is now live and can be read/downloaded FREE of charge via or directly by clicking hereThe 76 page issue includes a number of interesting topics and also includes the schedule of speakers for the upcoming 2015 ACE Irish Genealogy Summer School to take place at UCC, Cork.

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For those with an interest in the Irish involvement in the American Civil War, Cork's Damian Shiels of Rubicon Heritage recently delivered a wonderful address to the 2014 Tennessee Civil War Signature Event in America, marking the 150thAnniversary of the Battle of Franklin. In the Keynote Damian discussed the life, legacy and death of Patrick Cleburne, along with the stories of a number of other Irishmen who were involved in the engagement. Patrick Cleburne was born in Ovens, County Cork and became a very prominent figure of the Confederate Army and even a town in Texas has been named after him. The address was recorded by American company C-Span and they recently broadcasted the full address of c. 50 minutes which can be accessed by clicking here.

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The Kinsale History Society has for many years brought out a most interesting historical journal called “The Kinsale Record”. Volume 22 of the Kinsale Record has just been published and includes a wealth of interesting stories and facts regarding the heritage of Kinsale and further afield. Life in Kinsale during the 19th century is examined as well as Rural Unrest and Land Agitation in the Parishes of Tracton and Clontead. 2015 marks the centenary of the Lusitania tragedy and given Kinsale’s involvement in the aftermath of the disaster, including being the town where the Lusitania Inquisition was held (in the Market House, now a museum open to the public), a number of articles in the publication relate to this incident including the story of one survivor, Charles Scannel from Minane Bridge. Of course 100 years ago, World War One was upon us and the Kinsale Record covers the Great War in great detail, examining Army recruitment and local connections with Trafalgar.

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Date/Time Monday 19th January 2015 at 20:00
Event: Ballaun Stones and Holy Wells of West Cork
Location: Christian Fellowship Church Bantry, Co. Cork
Additional Information: The next event in Bantry is a Talk on Monday 19th January by Tony Miller Archaeologist on Ballaun Stones and Holy Wells of West Cork. This will be held in Christian Fellowship Church Bantry, starting at 8.00pm. All are very welcome. Event organised by the Bantry Historical Society.

Date/Time Monday 19th January 2015 at 20:00
Event: Massacre in West Cork
Location: Ballincollig Rugby Club, Co. Cork
Additional Information: Barry Keane will give a fascinating talk detailing what happened in Ballygroman, Ovens and in and around Dunmanway in 1922.Attendance on the night is €3 (annual subscription for all lectures €10). Event organised by the Muskerry Local History Society, for more information contact Rod MacConaill (086 1089524) or Dermot Lucey (087 9331135).

Date/Time Wednesday 21st January 2015 at 20:00
Event: Illustrated Lecture - Cork and the Great War - By Gerry White 
Location: The Parish Centre, Clonakilty
Additional Information: During his talk Gerry White will look at the impact of the Great War of 1914-18 on the city and county of Cork. He will examine the motives of those Irishmen who enlisted in the British Army, the units they served in and the lives of some Cork servicemen. The horrors of trench warfare and the war at sea will also be examined. He will also quantify the number of Corkmen who died in some of the major battles of the War. The 1916 Rising will be considered as a chapter of the Great War and the Corkmen who died in that weeklong conflict will be identified. The British Army career of Tom Barry and his activities in the immediate aftermath of the War will also be examined in some detail. The talk will conclude by identifying the main memorials that exist to the Irish who died in the War and will look at the issue of commemorations. This event which has been organised by Dúchas Clonakilty Heritage promises to be most interested. For more information see the attached poster.

Date/Time Thursday 22nd January 2015 at 20:00
Event: Illustrated Lecture - War of Independence - Secret Landscape of Knockraha 
Location: Knockraha Hall, Knockraha, Glanmire, Co. Cork
Additional Information: Organised by the Knockraha Historical and Heritage Society, this event promises to be most interesting with two keynote speakers - Mr. Damian Shiels (specialist in military, conflict archaeology and international lecturer) and Mr. Jim Fitzgerald (locally and nationally acclaimed historian, author of many publications and originator of the "Corry's tapes". The evening will cover the Bomb Factory in Knockraha as well as Sing Sing Prison, the Rea, the East Cork Flying Column and Safe Houses. Admission €5 on the night and all welcome.

Date/Time Friday 30th January 2015 at 19:00
Event: Castlemartyr and the Earls of Shannon Portraits
Castlemartyr Resort, Castlemartyr, Co. Cork
Additional Information: Castlemartyr Resort and the Irish Georgian Society invite you to welcome the Earls of Shannon back to Castlemartyr. A distinguished collection of family portraits showing members of the Boyle family, Earls of Shannon, is to be temporarily returned to their ancestral home, Castlemartyr, County Cork. They will be officially put on display on the evening of Friday January 30th next. On this occasion Harry Boyle, 10th Earl of Shannon will be present and in conversation with Robert O'Byrne, Vice-President of the Irish Georgian Society. Harry will discuss his family's distinguished history and also show a number of late 19th century photographs taken at Castlemartyr while the house was still owned by the Boyles. This event is free and all are welcome to attend. The event will be held in the bar of the hotel which was formerly the ballroom, a superb double cube room with splendid rococo plasterwork in the manner of Robert West. Refreshments will be served. Please R.S.V.P. to

Date/Time Friday 30th January 2015 at 20:00
Event: AGM of the Ballygarvan and District Local History Society
Radisson Park Hotel, Cork Airport, Co. Cork
Additional Information: AGM of the Ballygarvan and District Local History Society. For further information contact Secretary Tom Ryan - email

Date/Time Friday 30th January 2015 beginning at 18:30
Event: An Evening commemorating Seán Clárach Mac Domhnaill
Location: The Booney House, Churchtown, Mallow, Co. Cork
Additional Information: The Seán Clárach Event, organised by the Churchtown Historical and Heritage Society, takes place in the Booney House, Churchtown, on Friday 30th January, commencing at 18:30. A full programme is planned for the night which will include a presentation by Liam Ó Murchú (U.C.C.) and Mr. Jimmy Crowley (Cork Songwriter and Historian) will sing several Jacobite songs. Several local musicians will also entertain on the night. Seán Clárach, born in Churchtown in 1691, became a most prominent Irish Poet and was considered by his peers in the early 18th century as being the Príomh-Éigeas na Mumhan or Chief Poet of Munster. This event is free of charge by courtesy of CHURCHTOWN HISTORICAL AND HERITAGE SOCIETY. Booking is advisable - please contact Noel Linehan on 022 48249 or email

Date/Time Sunday 01st February 2015 beginning at 17:00
Event: Launch of the Lusitania Centenary Commemorative Events in Cobh for 2015 
Location: Cobh (various), Co. Cork
Additional Information: "On St. Brigid's Day, 1st February 2015, Cobh will launch four months of Lusitania centenary commemorative events that will take place along the Cork coast. This event was originally planned for 1st January.
On 7th May 1915, Cobh, known at the time as Queenstown was to witness the aftermath of the sinking of the Lusitania by a torpedo fired by the German submarine U 20. People witnessed first-hand the trauma and heartbreak as the dead, injured and bereaved were brought into a community that responded with courage and compassion. The Lusitania Peace Memorial in Cobh epitomises the efforts made by people to rescue survivors, recover bodies and comfort the bereaved.
On Sunday 1st February 2015, the carillonneur of St. Colman's Cathedral Adrian Gebruers will present a recital on the 49 bells of the cathedral commencing at 5 pm. Then a short recital by Cobh Confraternity Band in the Promenade in Cobh Town Centre will be followed by a short ceremony where the 1198 victims of the wartime tragedy will be remembered. At 6 pm schoolchildren will read the names of the 169 victims buried in the Old Church Cemetery in Cobh as the Irish Coastguard launch flares from the quayside in Cobh and from the ramparts of Fort Mitchel on Spike Island. Members of the public are encouraged to attend the ceremony".

Date/Time Wednesday 04th February 2015 at 20:00
Event: The victualling trade in Cork during the American War of Independence
Location: Crawford Art Gallery, Cork
Additional Information: Joe Varley will give a talk on the victualling trade in Cork during the American War of Independence. This talk has been organised by the Cork Historical and Archaeological Society. All welcome, no cover charge.

Date/Time Thursday 05th February 2015 at 20:00
Event: Illustrated Lecture - Famine Times in Blarney and District
Location: Blarney Secondary School (Scoil Mhuire Gan Smál), Blarney
Additional Information: Blarney & District Historical Society presents an illustrated lecture titled 'Famine times in Blarney & District'. The speaker Mr. Michael Murphy, is a highly acclaimed, award winning Cartographer or map-maker who teaches the subject in the Geography Dept. in U.C.C. He has compiled an incredible display of bygone maps coupled with a fascinating text for his lecture which examines how the terrible famine disaster affected the people of Blarney and District. He is also one of the editors of the recent publication, 'Atlas of The Great Irish Famine'. Everybody Welcome. Enquiries to Brian Gabriel 0872153216.

Date/Time Thursday 12th February 2014 at 20:00
Event: Illustrated Lecture: ""The Forgotten Copper Mines of West Carbery"
Crawford Art Gallery, Emmet Place, Cork
Additional Information: Organised by the Cork Literary and Scientific Society this talk by Paddy O' Sullivan promises to be most fascinating touching on the historically important copper mines of West Carbery. Individual lectures are €8 or one can become a member for €40 which includes attendance for 16 lectures.

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Le meas,

Conor Nelligan

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