Archive for category People & Places

Inaugural Presidential Speech of Michael D Higgins

On November 11th 2011 (11/11/11) Michael Daniel Higgins became the 9th President of The Republic of Ireland and we bring you a podcast of his inaugural speech.  Following a morning of celebrations including music and prayer, Taoiseach Enda Kenny TD invited The Chief Justice of Ireland to swear in the latest occupant of Aras an Uachtaráin.  Following in the reading of  declaration and signing of the seal of office, Taoiseach Kenny made a brief speech before allowing President Higgins, possibly our finest orator to address the people for the first time as President of Ireland.

To listen now click PLAY or right click/ctrl click DOWNLOAD and Save Target As to listen later.

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Culfadda Garden of Music and Memory

Irish dance sensation Michael Flatley proved his skills as a flautist as he launched the new Garden of Music and Memory in Culfadda, County Sligo on June 14th 2010. were there to capture the moment. This podcast features edited versions of the speeches by MC John Higgins, The blessing of The Park Sligo by Local Canon Finna and Rev Cathy Crimby followed by edited versions of the speeches made by Sligo County Council Cathaoirleach Gerry Murray, Sligo County Manager Hubert Kearns and of course the full though brief speech by Guest of Honour Michael Flatley followed by an impromtu performance by Michael playing one of his father’s favourite tunes on a flute he borrowed from one of the musicians present. The podcast opens with a performance by many of the local musicians led by their Far an Tí for the evening Junior Davey

Mayo Peace Park

The Mayo Peace Park Garden of Remembrance was opened by the President of Ireland Mary Mc Alleese on October the 7th 2008. It is a Memorial to all the men and women of County Mayo who have lost there life in conflict from the last century to the present day, it especially remembers Irish Army Soldiers who have served and died in UN Operations. The Memorial commemorates all those from the county who served and died in wars in the cause of world peace. More than Eleven Hundred young men from County Mayo were killed in Action in World War 1. They fought in the uniforms of Britain, Belgium, America, Australia, Canada, New Zealand and South Africa.

On May the 24th, 2010 we spent a morning in the Peace Park with its Chairman and Founder Michael Feeney MBE. Michael’s grandfather died in Flanders in conflict during World War I, the death of his Grandfather led Michael to a lifelong ambition to dedicate a memorial to all Mayo people who lost their life in conflicts throughout the world. The Peace Park is a credit to Michael’s determination to succeed in his ambition, and above all else it stands as a peaceful reminder of the loss that war brings, it is a contemplative and moving place to visit.

In this podcast Michael Feeney gives us a tour of this special Garden of Remembrance and the history of conflicts that are remembered here.

Click play to listen here or download and save to listen later.

For more information about The Mayo Peace Park Garden of Remembrance  you can visit their website at    A recently published book “Remembering Mayo’s Fallen Heroes” it is chonicle of stories, articles and facts about those who died in the world wars and conflicts of the past century . This is a limited production.

The Book is are available from Mr Michael Feeney MBE, Milebush, Castlebar , County Mayo , Ireland, costing  €20 each, postage charges are  additional to this.
Approximate  postal charges  are as follows
$17 to post the book to America.
€ 11 to post to Great Britain.
€7.50 to post within the Republic of Ireland .


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Titanic Bell Ringing Ceremony 2010

There can be few people who don’t know the story of the sinking of The RMS Titanic on April 15th 1912. Many Irish people perished onboard and there are many myths and legends surrounding the events of that day but one true story that few people are aware of is that 14 people from the tiny parish of Addergoole in County Mayo, a region in the shadow of Mount Nephin with a then population of about 1,600, were on board that fateful journey which ended so tragically for 11 of them.

In 2002 two men Toss Gibbons and Local Doctor Paul Nolan vowed to commemorate the event in the village of Lahardane by organising 11 solemn rings of the church bell for those lost and three joyous tolls for the survivors at the exact time the ship sank 02:20 hrs Irish time. Since then The Addergoole Titanic Society has been formed and they have endeavered to bring this story to a wider audience and were there in 2010 to record the event. In this podcast we can hear the the opening ceremony and the ringing of the bell for each local passenger as well as a moving account by Michael Kilgannon from Caltra in County Galway whose uncle wrote a letter to his mother before embarking on one of the most famous voyages in history.

Of those 14 people from Lahardane the three who survived were; Annie Kate Kelly, Delia McDermott, Annie McGowan.

The 11 who perished were; Catherine Bourke, John Bourke, Mary Bourke, Mary Canavan, Pat Canavan, Bridget Donohue, Nora Fleming, James Flynn, Catherine McGowan, Delia Mahon, Mary Mangan and we dedicate this podcast to their memories.

Click the play button to listen here or download to listen later.

For more infromation visit The Addergoole Titanic Society here.

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Handel’s Messiah Concert, Fishamble Street, April 13th 2010.

We are delighted to have a recording of the annual performance of Handel’s Messiah to share with you this week – The event was recorded on Fishamble Street in Dublin on the 13th of April, 2010. 


Handel’s Messiah was first performed in The Neal’s Music Hall Fishamble Street in Dublin on April 13th 1742.  Since 1991 The Temple bar Cultural Trust have revived the tradition of what is now known as Handel’s Day the highlight of which is a free public open air performance of The Messiah on Fishamble Street and we were there this year to record this very special performance of one of the most uplifting pieces of classical music. 

Conductor Prionsias O’Din with Our Lady’s Choral Society and Soloist Ross Scanlon and The National Symphonia with sound for the open air event by Jim Docherty.

We have split the hour long event into 3 seperate podcasts each one dealing with a different movement of Handel’s extraordinary composition.  Click play to listen here or download and listen later.

Art Ó Súilleabháin and Bladair

Continuing our celebration of Seachtain Na Gaelige here at, we met with the Director of The Mayo Education Centre Art Ó Súilleabháin who told us about a brand new iniative for the Irish Language called Bladair – This revolutionary new web presence where you can Bladair and blog as Gaelige.  This is a fascinating place to practice your Irish or to learn some cupla focal and we have teamed up with Bladair so that over the coming weeks and Bladair will be recording some of the blogs so that you will not only able to hear them here but you may even be heard reading your own blog -, go on have a go, you only need to use a couple of Irish words !

Click on the sound file below to hear more.

To find out more about Bladair, visit the website here to get all the details.

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Working at the War Memorial, Bray.

In this interview Jho Harris chats with Paul and Chris two of the people who voluntarily look after the war memorial in Bray, County Wicklow, ensuring that this important memorial to those Irish men from Bray and its environs who fought in World War I and World War II is kept for future generations.

The Irish Writers Centre

In this interview the Chairman of the Irish Writers Centre Jack Harte talks about the resources and services offered to writers and audiences through the Irish Writers Centre in Dublin.


The Irish Writers’ Centre has an exciting range of events and workshops taking place over the next few weeks.

Becoming a Member

We already have a hundred, we need a thousand. At € 50 per year it is not an inconsiderable amount especially for struggling writers, but it would provide a financial base towards meeting our overheads. It would also ensure that ownership of the project is in the hands of writers and readers. Yes, don’t forget that membership is open to readers as well as writers. For more information on any or all of the above Click Here