This blog is a personal take on Listowel, Co. Kerry. I am writing for anyone anywhere with a Listowel connection but especially for sons and daughters of Listowel who find themselves far from home. Contact me at listowelconnection@gmail.com

Tag: Bryan MacMahon Page 1 of 9

Some of the Old Stock

Photo Credit; Una Murphy, Mallow Camera Club

<<<<<<<<<

Some of Listowel’s Old Stock

This marvellous old snap is one of the great photos shared by Mike Hannon on Facebook.

In the centre of the photo is the late Ned O’Connor of Convent Street.

Ned was the first Listowel man I met on my first visit to town. The year was 1972 or 1973. I was a very young teacher and on my first big assignment. I was to examine the Leaving Cert. class in Presentation Secondary School in oral Irish.

I had never been to Listowel before.

I looked up the Bord Fáilte book for a suitable Bed and Breakfast for the week. (There was no internet in those days)

I think it was the Convent Street address that prompted me to choose Ned O’Connor’s premises. I figured it was surely within walking distance of the school. It was.

I arrived on the Sunday evening, to begin work on Monday. Ned welcomed me and showed me to a very comfortable room. He told me that the week before the “Padre Pio priest” had stayed in that very room.

The next morning after my breakfast, Ned gave me an orange to bring with me to school. He told me that he thought my voice would be sore from all the talking and oranges were great for relieving a sore throat. I had never stayed in a B and B before but I knew that this level of caring couldn’t be the norm.

As an ambassador for Listowel, Ned did an excellent job.

May he rest in peace.

By the way, the Leaving Cert girls did excellently well in their oral exam.

<<<<<<<<<

It’s Done and It’s Lovely

And who are the two men enjoying a chat and admiring the newly unveiled area?

Billy Keane and Aidan ÓMurchú were relaxing in the sunshine in the new facility.

Necessary but a bit unsightly in our lovely new meeting, performing and eating space

<<<<<<<

From 2002/03 Pres. Yearbook

<<<<<<<<<<<

Dáithí Óg

Back in the day Dáithí ÓSé used to be a weatherman on TG4

<<<<<<<<<<<<

Our Language is changing

Baby egret in flight by Criostóir Grayson

<<<<<<<<<<

A Lovely Corner of Listowel in December 2021

<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<

A Language that the Strangers do not know

Last week I included this photo from Vincent Carmody’s Snapshots of a market town book. I was using it to illustrate the point that the street names have changed.

But it isn’t just the streets names that have changed. Our whole vocabulary has changed utterly. The concept of a General Draper or General Outfitter is alien to today’s young people.

A General draper sold everything for the house, curtains, tablecloths etc, he sold haberdashery which was pins, needles, buttons, sewing thread etc, everything necessary for making and mending and smaller items of clothing like underwear and nightwear.

The General Outfitter sold clothes for both men and women, as well as hats bags, scarfs and what we now know as accessories.

Millinery and mantles are words rarely seen nowadays.

Hats and coats to you.

Look again at the bill. I don’t know what an S.P. coat could be. It cost 4 times as much as an overcoat.

There used to be a jacket called a sports coat but I can’t imagine that being more expensive than an overcoat.

Another interesting aspect of Mr D. J. Flavin’s bill is that he was given two months credit. In 1926 it was not unusual for people of standing to be only presented with a bill for goods bought three or four times a year.

<<<<<<<<<<<

Listowel, the very Place for a Shopping Spree in 1959

The town was buzzing; Santa, a Bazaar, Dances , a local Radio Station and transport laid on.

<<<<<<<<<<<<

Farming Life in North Kerry in 1974

A lovely little film of life in these parts, milking the cows, shoeing the horse and walking the dogs, all narrated by the unmistakable voice of Eamon Keane..

Thank you, Jim Ryan, for finding this one.

<<<<<<<<<<<

Beautiful Hand Made Cards

I make no apologies for including these again. They are made locally by a very talented artist. They are available at Kerry Writers’ Museum, Listowel.

<<<<<<<<<<

A Sad Note

Fr. Kevin MacNamara who passed away unexpectedly yesterday was a popular priest when he served the parishes of Moyvane Knockanure. He will be missed by his many friends in North Kerry. May he rest in peace

<<<<<<<<<<<

Christmasses Remembered

Christmas card from Listowel’s Bryan MacMahon, illuminated by Listowel’s Michael O’Connor.

<<<<<<<<<

Christmas 1957

Noreen Keane- Brennan shared this photo of friends and neighbours in Sheahan’s of William Street at Christmas 1957.

<<<<<<<<<<

A Kerry Christmas…a poem by the late Brendan Kennelly

<<<><<<<<<<<

<<<<<<<<<<<

A Listowel Bridge Champion

Earlier this week when I was writing about John Comyn’s 50 years writing the Bridge column in The Irish Independent, I included the observation that he thought that Pat Walshe of Listowel was the best player he had ever encountered in a long career playing Bridge at championship level.

But who was Pat Walshe?

Jim MacMahon has the answer.

“… Pat was the son of the late Dr Toddy Walshe and Siobhan, nee Ashe, a cousin of Thomas Ashe. Pat lived in Church Street (or Ashe street). I recall my late father Bryan saying to me one day when Pat was about 8 years old ,…..Do you see that young fellow, Toddy’s son, he has an unusual aptitude for maths…and so it proved to be.”

( What was in the water in Church Street? I wonder if any other street has produced so many exceptional scholars.)

<<<<<<<<<<<

Edwardian post box at Convent Cross. This box dates from the 1930’s. Many is the Christmas card started its journey here.

<<<<<<<<<

Craft Hub at Kerry Writers’ Museum

If you’re looking for a beautiful locally made Christmas present, drop into Kerry Writers’ Museum.

This is what I bought and I’m delighted with my haul. The beautiful intricately detailed bookmarks are made by Karen Pleass. They are absolutely beautiful and perfect for that air mail present for someone who loves the Irish countryside.

The hand made cards are a steal at €3.75 each. Maggie Donald makes these unique frameable cards from local plants. They are absolutely gorgeous. I wanted to buy the lot.

Everyone who knows me knows that I love Woodford Pottery. Pat Murphy has been very busy in lockdown. This new range is a new departure from his block colours. I bought a little jug, ideal for those of us who dine alone. And then because it was so sweet and I love a posy on the table I bought this lovely little vase.

Be sure to drop in before Christmas and support local artists.

<<<<<<<<<

Listowel Memories and a New Business in Town

Listowel Garda Station in November 2021

<<<<<<<<<<<

The Master

an essay by Cyril Kelly

<<<<<<<<<<<

Homeward Bound

A nun walks home to the convent in 2007. A lot has changed.

<<<<<<<<<

A Listowel Fact

Lord Listowel visited the town in 1814 and he handed over sites for two churches, one Catholic and the other Church of Ireland. Both were built almost ten years later. St. Mary’s was built in 1829. The spire and porch were added in 1865. Initially the congregation stood during mass as there were no pews. The seats were added and side aisles built in 1910.

<<<<<<<<<

Pixie has made a Calendar

If you’re looking for a gift idea for a Covid bound emigrant, this could be the answer to your prayers.

Pixie will deliver or drop for you to collect if you are local.

You can contact him with your order at the email address below.

pixieskingdom@yahoo.com

<<<<<<<<<<<

Santa at McKenna’s in 1959

Were you one of the lucky children who visited Santa in Listowel in 1959?

Kathy Reynolds has put a lovely collection of Santa photos from that occasion up on line. The link is here;

If you recognise yourself or someone you know please email Kathy. The photos are numbered and you can give her the number and the names of the people in the photo. Kathy’s email address is on the video. She asks that you respect copyright.

Santa in McKenna’s in 2021

<<<<<<<<<<<<<

Another Change on Church Street

<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<

Ballylongford, A Pebble, a poem and a Very Clever Sculpture

Ballylongford Mill today; Photo by Breda Ferris

<<<<<<<<<<

It’s the simple things like sharing a donut….

<<<<<<<<<<

A Tribute to a Beloved and Missed Mentor

Elizabeth Carroll (Liz Chute) remembers Bryan MacMahon and his influence. The story is told in Liz’s screenshots from her Instagram feed.

The Pendant

<<<<<<<<<<<<<

That Naas Sculpture

Helen O’Connor and Dave O’Sullivan filled me in on this one.

Title: Siren

Artist: By Alex Pentek

Location: Siren is located on the green adjacent to Naas Fire Station on the Newbridge Road.  

History of the project:
Over the last number of years, Athy and Naas have both opened purpose built fire stations.  A refurbishment of the fire station in Monasterevin has also taken place.  As part of the building programme, Kildare County Council engaged three Irish artists to further enhance each building by means of commissioning art works, through the Per Cent for Art Scheme.  The Fire Officer, Michael Fitzsimons and County Arts Officer Lucina Russell considered the physical building and their particular location when designing a brief for the commissions.   


Artist statement:
The sculpture shows how I think the sound of the fire alarm would look if it were not a sound but an object.  As the sound of a fire alarm broadcasts the message that the help of the Naas Fire Service is required, it is not a soothing sound, but a loud and shrill noise that forces anyone who hears it to consider their own personal safety for a moment.  As the traditional fire-bell has been replaced with the wailing cry of the air horn, the form of the proposed sculpture comprises of a series of fluted horns, pointing outwards in all directions as if to make sure that everyone gets the message.  

About the artist: 
Alex Pentek is a graduate of the Crawford College of Art and Design, Cork and currently works from a studio at Monard, Rathpeacon, Co. Cork.   

With the style of the work ranging from abstract to figurative, he have worked predominantly on large-scale public art sculpture commissions for outdoor locations using durable materials. Some of this work includes two life-size female figures from cast marble sand in Tralee, Co. Kerry; three giant leaves in cast bronze in Clonakilty, Co. Cork; and four giant seeds from carved oak in Tower, Co. Cork, to name but a few.  During this time he has also carried out several smaller scale, private commissions for both indoor and outdoor settings.

While continuously exploring aspects of Nature in a variety of materials ranging from sheet metals, cast bronze, ceramic, carved wood and cement, he also enjoys the challenge of new materials. 

<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<

Page 1 of 9

Powered by WordPress & Theme by Anders Norén