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

Tag: Fr. Pat Moore Page 1 of 9


Magnificent tree in Listowel Pitch and Putt Course in June 2023


Remembering an Inspirational Friend in Littor

His friends have erected a lovely beach memorial to Fr. Pat Moore on the beach near his family home where he loved to walk.

Photos and text from Asdee Community Development

On Fr Pat Moore’s 66th birthday, we want to sincerely thank Paddy Fitzell for his beautiful plaque commemorating Fr Pat, and our thanks to John & Hannah Fitzell for donating the plaque.

We also want to thank Tim Quilter for the stonework & the creation of this lovely commemorative seat, which now sits at the foot of Littor Road overlooking Fr Moore’s beloved Littor Strand.

The seat has taken much longer than we had hoped, hitting a number of setbacks, but it is now in place in time for summer. There are further finishing touches to be done in the coming months.

A final thanks to Kerry County Council who carried out work on the road entrance to the beach, allowing safe access to beach-goers for the months ahead.


Remembering Fr. Bryan Dalton

Last week I got this email from Florida;


My name is Duane Miller, I live in South Florida.  Our former parish priest was Father Bryan Dalton of St. Ambrose Catholic Church in Deerfield Beach, FL.  He passed away in 2018.

In my online research it says he was buried in St. Michael’s Cemetery in Listowel.  I am seeking some information on his burial, preferably a picture of his gravesite which could be uploaded to  Is this something you can assist with?

Best Regards,


I started with my neighbour, Jimmy Moloney, my go-to person on any civic queries. I didn’t make it clear that the burial was a recent one. He thought I had Florida relatives looking for an Irish emigrant ancestor.

In my search for the grave I found local undertakers to be the most helpful and obliging allies.

Noel Lyons told me where the priests were buried but I figured that Fr. Dalton was buried in a family grave rather than a single priest’s grave.

Noel sent me to to find out who the funeral directors were.

Seán Gleasure to the rescue. He told me that Gleasure’s Funeral Directors’ had looked after the funeral. He knew exactly where the grave was and even offered to take a photograph for me to send to Florida.

Here is the Dalton grave in St. Michael’s:

I was delighted to help Fr. Bryan’s Florida parishioners.

Sometimes the internet is wonderful at shrinking our world.


Reunited in Listowel

It was nice to be together in Listowel, even if the occasion was a sad one.


Dolly Day Photos Tomorrow

Meanwhile only in Listowel….

Listowel, Saturday June 24 2023, an unconvincing ‘nun’, an even more unconvincing Dolly Parton and a much too thin Elvis in Páirc Mhic Shithigh


Poetry and Cattle

Late Evening Surfer…Photo: Alice Moylan


Great Bealtaine Idea

Molly Twomey is one of the poet’s. Here is a poem of hers

recently published in the newspaper.

Have you ever lied to me? I ask. You reply,
that on our fifth date, you said a rock hit the wheel,

but it was a chaffinch. You didn’t turn and hand me
that small flame of news but drove into the mango

and gunpowder sunset. Afraid I’d make you pull up
to check that there were no quavers stuck in its throat.

That if its pulse didn’t react to my fingers
tap-dancing on its keel bone, I’d want to bury it 

under heather and moss. You thought I’d make you pray
every time we drove from Lismore to Ballynoe, that our date

would become not the boardwalk, chips and the anemones
but broken wings and blood wet feathers. I think of your ex

in North Carolina. How she might have perched and looked out
to razed earth, waiting for you with your newly shaved beard,

hand luggage of notebooks and craft beer. Only for the fast
and brutal machine of my heart to catch you off guard.

Molly Twomey has won the Padraic Colum Poetry Prize, the Waterford Poetry Prize, and has been awarded the Eavan Boland Mentorship Award and an Arts Council Literature Bursary. She is currently working on her debut collection.



Serendipity is all about making happy discoveries by chance.

Recently I got a demand for more money from Google as I had used up 70% of my storage. You will appreciate that the blog with all its pictures uses up a lot of storage space. I decided to clear out some of the old stuff to free up some space. I started with gmail.

Did you know that gmail has lots of strange folders called names like Promotions and Social? They slot emails into these folders without your spotting.

Long story short, in the folder called Social I found all of the late Fr. Pat Moore’s emails from Caring Bridge which was where he had a blog before he had his own website.

Here is his upbeat post from May 2016 with his individual take on life, complete with his unique appreciation of his home, his friends, and country folk in general.

R.I.P. Fr. Pat.

The bees are busy in the apple blossoms at the side of the house. I prefer apple blossoms to cherry blossoms for they seem to share more with the green leaves. And they seem to last much longer perhaps because they are more native than the Japanese cherry blossom.

Tom Costello lives on the banks of the river Feale. Someone  called to him lately collecting for a new swimming pool they are building down in Limerick and asked for a contribution. He was delighted to support the project. He gave them a bucket of water from the river!

Sonny Egan told me of a local happening. A builder he knows was asked to build a two storey house for a rather mean tight man. Would he get enough money to complete the job he thought? ‘Do you know what we will do,’ he suggested. ‘We will build one storey and the second storey might be another story.’

Last night we remembered the wit of the late Jackie Healy as we recalled a different world. Jackie made a career out of being perceived to be lazy. At his 80th birthday party at The Jessie James Pub he was asked if he had any regrets. ‘I think I worked one day in my life,’ he said.  ‘ Have you a garden this year,’ he was asked.  ‘The only earth turned on my behalf will be the day I’m buried in the grave!’ Other sayings are either too local or wicked!

It’s First Communion season. My god-child,  Caoimhe, made her Communion on Saturday and she came to see me on Sunday with her lovely family. My cousin Debbie is with me again.

The young swallows are learning to fly.

And all is well with the world this May evening.

May 16 2016


Listowel Success at The Kingdom County Fair

Photo and text from The Irish Examiner

Many competing on the weekend said that the Kingdom County Fair was a great start to the season for them.

Michael Laffan from Kilfinny, Adare, Co Limerick, certainly agreed, as in the dairy classes on Sunday, he took home the Senior Champion and Supreme Female Champion titles for 2023 for Everground Hagley Gail 51.

“It’s great to be back,” Mr Laffan said, and the animals may have known they were gearing up for something too because in advance, “you’re washing them, and they would have got a little extra feed, just getting ready for today”.

“For a cow like this, you start with a nice udder that looks like it’s high and wide; good teat placement, from a milking point of view that they’re in the right place; and then we like a high-yielding cow so a cow with the capacity to yield,” he added.

As Mr Laffan was competing, he said he took notice of a lot of young people in attendance at the show – which instills great confidence in him about the future of these competitions, and brought back some memories for him.

“We started showing when our children were small and even though they’ve grown up, myself and my wife Margaret kept showing away,” he explained.

“We enjoy it, it’s nice to do of a Sunday, and it’s nice to take out the cows now and again,” according to Mr Laffan, who said his children continue to help out on the dairy farm and to prepare the cattle for competitions.

In the dairy section on Sunday at the Kingdom County Fair, the Junior Champion, Reserve Junior Champion, and Reserve Senior Champion titles went to Daniel and Emer Curtin from Listowel, Co Kerry.

Meanwhile, in the Young Handlers U-12 dairy class, Stephen Harty came first, Clodagh Kennelly in second, and Nora O’Carroll in third. 

Jennifer Harty placed first in the Young Handlers 13-16 class, with Sarah O’Connell and Jacqui O’Connell in second and third.


An Artefact

A butter churn…when our forefathers made butter this is what they used. It was a job that required careful attention to timing.


A Fact

The Ancient Romans used to drop a piece of toast into their wine for good health. That is where we got the phrase to raise a toast.



Listowel Town Square November 30n 2022


Pixie’s Kingdom Calendar

If, like me, you like an old fashioned paper calendar with spaces to write in birthdays, bin day, holidays or whatever, Pixie’s Kingdom calendar is the one for you.

It’s also a great last minute present, perfect for gifting at home or abroad. It’s full of beautiful images of lovely Listowel. I love it.

I was just returning from town having bought my calendar (a snip at €15 and there are great bulk discounts available) when I ran into Billy and Mairead.

The calendars are available at Horan’s Health Store (on the corner of Market and William Streets.)


The Irish Civil War

The civil war was a period in our history that I always felt I knew little enough about. I knew that it was fought particularly viciously hereabouts and it has left a sad legacy that persists today.

I had never heard of The Munster Republic until I watched RTE’s recent centenary programmes. Here is a link to the series on the Rte Player

The Irish Civil War

The Munster Republic was an informal and colloquial term used by Irish republicans to refer to the territory they held in the province of Munster at the start of the Irish Civil War.[1]The “republic” never claimed to be a state as such, but was a base for the republican civil war aim of creating an all-Ireland Irish Republic.

After the first week of fighting in the Civil War (28 June – 5 July 1922), Dublin was held by those in support of the Anglo-Irish Treaty and the Irish Free State.

The main stronghold of Anti-Treaty forces (the Irish Republicans) became the self-styled Munster Republic, consisting of the counties south of a line between Limerick and WaterfordLiam Lynch, the republican commander-in-chief, hoped to use the “Republic” as a means of re-negotiating the Treaty, and ideally reconstituting the Irish Republic of 1919–21. For this defensive attitude, Lynch was bitterly criticised by some other republicans, who felt that he should be acting offensively to bring the war to a quick end.

However, the Anti-Treaty side (who were supported by a large group of rebels from the Irish Republican Army), lacked artillery and armoured cars, both of which the Free State had to borrow from the British. The Free State launched an offensive against the Munster Republic in July 1922.[2] Limerick and Waterford were taken easily, and Cork became the last county independent of the Free State. Michael Collins sent the Free State Army by sea to Union Hall in County Cork and to Fenit in County Kerry. Cork was retaken on 11 August.[3]His opponents then moved into the countryside and continued small-scale guerrilla warfare until April 1923. (Wikipedia)

Then I read this in Northkerry blog

Kerry Officers elected by the Gort na Glanna Martyrs’ Cumann, Co. Kerry are as follows: Chairman, John Buckley; Secretary, Bill Horan; Treasurer, Hugh Goulding, P.R.O., Paddy Kennelly; Tom Manaher and Hugh Goulding were appointed delegates to the Comhairle cheantair. Dozens of homes in the Ballybunion area have been raided by members of the Special Branch and uniformed gardai in yet another act of collaboration with the British occupation forces. For over two weeks the raiding parties concentrated on the area, homes were ransacked, bedrooms were torn apart and women and children were terrified. In some cases homes were continuously watched for up to two days. Following the raids one man was jailed.


Poetry is sometimes described as “What oft was said but ne’er so well expressed”

I recently bought a book of poetry by a talented local writer


In Ballylongford

On Sunday December 18 2022, they unveiled a sculpture in memory of Con Dee and events one hundred years ago.

Photo; Ballylongford Snaps


An email from Chicago

I am an occasional reader of your blog, and am living in Chicago. My Bedford great-grandmother, Mary Josephine Bambury, and her Ballyeagh husband, James Dore, settled here about 130 years ago.

While my Bambury cousins are scattered all over the globe, many are still living in Kerry and Cork, and I try to keep up with them when I can. One of them, the late Bart Bambury, of Cork City and Kenmare, was a bit of a Renaissance man, and although I did not connect with him until a few years ago, I enjoyed our correspondence immensely. Recently, his friends and family published a book of his poems, and there was a launch party in Cork City.

I thought that with Bart being a “local boy” to Listowel (in a manner of speaking), you might be interested.

Best regards,
Bob Hermanson



Kerry Hospice Memorial Tree

Photo: Kerry Hospice

A ceremony of remembrance was held at the remembrance tree on Sunday December 18 2022.


A Poem for Christmas


by John Betjeman

The bells of waiting Advent ring,
   The Tortoise stove is lit again
And lamp-oil light across the night
    Has caught the streaks of winter rain
In many a stained-glass window sheen
From Crimson Lake to Hookers Green.

The holly in the windy hedge
    And round the Manor House the yew
Will soon be stripped to deck the ledge,
    The altar, font and arch and pew,
So that the villagers can say
“The church looks nice” on Christmas Day.

Provincial Public Houses blaze
    And Corporation tramcars clang,
On lighted tenements I gaze
    Where paper decorations hang,
And bunting in the red Town Hall
Says “Merry Christmas to you all.”

And London shops on Christmas Eve
    Are strung with silver bells and flowers
As hurrying clerks the City leave
    To pigeon-haunted classic towers,
And marbled clouds go scudding by
The many-steepled London sky.

And girls in slacks remember Dad,
    And oafish louts remember Mum,
And sleepless children’s hearts are glad.
    And Christmas-morning bells say “Come!'”
Even to shining ones who dwell
Safe in the Dorchester Hotel.

And is it true? And is it true,
    This most tremendous tale of all,
Seen in a stained-glass window’s hue,
    A Baby in an ox’s stall?
The Maker of the stars and sea
Become a Child on earth for me ?

And is it true? For if it is,
    No loving fingers tying strings
Around those tissued fripperies,
    The sweet and silly Christmas things,
Bath salts and inexpensive scent
And hideous tie so kindly meant,

No love that in a family dwells,
    No carolling in frosty air,
Nor all the steeple-shaking bells
    Can with this single Truth compare –
That God was man in Palestine
And lives today in Bread and Wine.


Duagh Live Crib

Remember all the hoo ha in Dublin earlier this December about a live crib. Well, we, in North Kerry, are so lucky to have a live crib to rival anything the capital has to offer.

You have until January 7 to visit the Duagh Live Crib. I can’t recommend it highly enough. It is a treasure. Do remember though that these are farm animals and pets, not zoo animals so respect their space.

Fr. Pat is looking down on this project and he is delighted.

The animals are housed in this beautiful old stable at the back of the church.

Even though the stable is kept at a temperature suitable for the animals some of whom have fur coats, the atmosphere is warm, cosy and welcoming.

The animals have names given to them by the children. The walls all around are decorated with local children’s artwork.

This is a marvellous parish effort. Well done to everyone involved. It’s a triumph. My photographs don’t do it justice. You must go there.


Listowel Community Orchard

A beautiful spot down by the Feale is the community orchard. The pears are nearly ripe. The horse chestnut tree is laden with conkers. There are herbs galore for all to pick and use. It’s the perfect spot for a picnic.


In Duagh

I like to call to Duagh church and grounds to reconnect with Fr. Pat Moore. He is still very much there in spirit.

“Somedays I just sits.”

I sat on the bench dedicated to Fr. Pat’s memory.

I sat and looked at the church where he ministered and the house and parish centre where he lived, worked and prayed.

On a sunny September day in 2021, it was a haven of peace and birdsong. Fr. Pat’s spirit is there among the people who loved him.


Kitchener (1901)

A correspondent of Mr. T. P. O’Connor’s weekly writes as follows regarding the present Commander-in-Chief of the forces in South Africa.

Let me set you right about Lord Kitchener’s natal spot, regarding which I happen to know a good deal, having myself been born within a couple of miles of it. He was born at Gunsborough Cottage, which was lent to his father, Lieutenant-Colonel Kitchener, by the father of the well-known ci-devant Irish M. P., Mr. Peirce Mahony, of Kilmorna. Gunsborough is within three miles of Listowel, the capital of North Kerry. He was baptised at the little Protestant Church hard by now in ruins, I believe by the late Rev. Robert Sandes, a representative of the family of which the late Mr. George Sandes, of Grenville, Listowel, was a well known member. The Kitcheners subsequently went to live at Crotto House, which Colonel Kitchener afterwards sold to Mr. Thomas Beale Brown, a near relative of Sir Michael Hicks-Beach. The true history of the whole vexed question of the connection of the Kitchener family with Kerry was told during the late Soudan campaign in the columns of the Irish Times by Major Kiggell, of Cahnra, Glin, County Limerick, whose son, Major Lancelot Kiggell, is now on Lord Kitchener’s staff.

New Zealand Tablet, 25 July 1901, 


Church Street Tattoo Shop

The tattoo shop has gone from pink to blue. It is probably more in keeping with the dark vibe coming from the shop.


Getting in the Mood

Flavin’s window is getting us in the mood.


Molly’s House, Kerry footballers in Clonakity, Weathering a Storm and a Law against Selling Fresh Bread

 Molly’s House, Ballylongford

This picturesque house is in Ballylongford. Photos by Breda Ferris


Kerry Footballers helping The Rebels

Photo and article by Kieran MacCarthy from The Southern Star

In his two county senior football championship games in Clonakilty colours, Kerry import Dara Ó Sé has scored a combined 1-14.

Man-of-the-match with 0-8 (2f) in the win against Carrigaline, the former An Ghaeltacht footballer from Ballydavid in West Kerry followed up with 1-6 (4f, 1-0 pen) in the loss to Ballincollig – he has made an immediate difference with his adopted club.

Another Kerryman, Joe Grimes from Listowel, has also slotted straight into the Clon starting team, lining out in midfield in their opening two Cork Premier SFC matches.


‘They are two great players to have on the team. Aside from their talent alone they bring a lot of professionalism to the set-up. It’s outside ways of thinking as well,’ Clon senior footballer Martin Scally told the Star Sport Podcast recently.

‘I know there used to be a saying in Clon before that Clon needed imports to win the county – you look at Paddy Barrett back in ’96, a Limerick man, and there was Noel Griffin from Clare in 2009. Clon has always had a good, proud tradition of football but there were always one or two imports to help push us over the line.’

There is a strong Kerry connection with Clonakilty GAA

Club too. Ó Sé and Grimes, both gardaí now based in West Cork, aren’t the first Kerry men to play football with Clon. Instead, they’re following in some very famous footsteps.

‘Clon has always had Kerry players on their teams. At first it was because of the nearby Darrara Agricultural College going back to 1905. Students stayed in the college, didn’t go home for weekends and so many played for Clon, if the college didn’t have its own team in the championship,’ Carbery chairman and local GAA historian Tom Lyons explained.

Clon’s three most famous Kerry imports are Pat Griffin, Tom Moriarty and Kevin Dillon.

Griffin, a Garda, arrived in Clonakilty in the early 1970s and made an immediate impact with the club. He came with a noted pedigree, having won two All-Ireland senior football titles with the Kingdom (1969 and 1970) and he also captained Kerry to the 1968 All-Ireland final. With Clon, he won a South West junior football medal in 1977 – and that’s the last time the club won the junior title. Griffin, who passed away last year, then got involved in coaching, both at underage with Clonakilty and with adult teams in various clubs around West Cork.


Before Griffin, Kerryman Tom Moriarty landed in Clonakilty in 1948 as a bank clerk, having won an All-Ireland minor medal with Kerry in ’46. He captained Clon in 1952 when they won their seventh county senior title in a marathon campaign packed with draws. He then played a few seasons for Cork, and won Munster and national league titles in ’52 before Kerry came calling again for his services in ’54.

A north Kerry man from Duagh, Kevin Dillon captained Clonakilty in the 1968 county senior final when they lost a replay to Carbery. He then won a South West junior medal in 1977, but before that he also lined out for the Cork footballers for a number of seasons in the mid to late 1960s.

All three Kerrymen – Griffin, Dillon and Quirke – settled in Clonakilty and had sons who played senior for Clon.


This tree is in Muckross. It is scrawled with the names of boys and girls for years now.

Is this practice romantic or destructive?


We had a Great Time at the Launch of the Late Fr. Pat Moore’s book

We had songs, stories and drama. Great memories!


Incredible as it may seem…..

In January 1918 in the town of Listowel, Co. Kerry, two shopkeepers were prosecuted for “displaying for sale bread that was less than 12 hours baked”.

Dave O’Sullivan discovered this fact when looking up old newspapers about a totally different matter.

He also found out why it was illegal to sell fresh bread. Bread was sold by weight and freshly baked bread was heavier than “settled” bread.

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