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: Hay

GAA and More

Listowel Courthouse and Library in July 2022


Planning Your Weekend?

Two local festivals are back in full swing next weekend. Here are the details.


The GAA is all about Family

Pic: Kerry GAA Fans Facebook page

There are some families that are steeped in GAA lore. Football is in the DNA of OSés, Griffins, Cliffords etc etc. But Pat Spillane’s farewell speech has to be the most poignant reminder of how much winning an All Ireland medal can mean even to families who have biscuit tins full of them under beds.

“My father never saw us play. The three sons have 19 All-Ireland medals and his two grandsons today, Killian and Adrian, have two more. He would have been a proud man, 21 senior All-Ireland football medals brought in to his house. It’s just a special day. A special day.”


Stephen Fernane in this week’s Kerryman tells us why he also remembers his father on Ireland final day.

Photo; BBC Sport

Ogie Clifford in the Sam Maguire cup with his father, David, and his uncle, Paudie in Croke Park on Sunday, July 24 2022.


Summers Past

“…Oh, for the touch of a vanished hand,

Or the sound of a voice that is still….”

This lovely photo is from The Irish Examiner archive. It was taken in a meadow in Wilton in Cork but it could be anywhere in Ireland in the 1950s and 60s.

I remember the gallon of tea and the sandwiches wrapped in waxed paper from a sliced pan.


Obituary to a Man who Kept Lartigue History Safe

by David Kissane for The Ballydonoghue Parish Magazine

The Ballydonoghue Parish Magazine was saddened by the death recently of one of its original members, Mick Barry of Ballingown. Mick was an advertisement for mental and physical vigour, with a curious mind and a challenging nature.Well into his 90s, he had a long and interesting life, spent mostly on his farm in Ballingown where his father had passed away when Mick was quite young.

He was well rooted in his own townland and parish, and knew every inch and every person in the locality. He fulfilled many roles in his long lifetime, from farmer to enginerer to mechanic to historian to taxi driver to husband to father to grandfather to philosopher to much more.

He was a fear iol-dánach, a man for all seasons of human life. He was a valued companion of his friend John B Keane, a writer who valued the Kerryness of Mick. Mick contributed this Kerryness to his work with Listowel Writers Week and the Ballydonoghue Parish Magazine. His creativity was displayed on many occasions in his membership of the latter, creating the concept of the photo-story where he took an old photo and generated an article about the people in it, the time it was taken and the latent emotive potential around it. In times of doubt and division at a meeting, he could unentangle the algebra of issues and cast light on the possible road ahead.

An hour spent in Mick’s company always became three hours as he had the ability and nous to draw one into the fresh pastures of his tales, memories and histories. He was also, of course a humorous man and a rogue when it suited! A twinkle in his eye at the start of a story meant that his listener was going nowhere fast.

He was inspired by many things in the parish around him, not least the sulphur green and the bottle green and the lime green and the sea green of the Hill that looked down on him sometimes under a cobalt blue sky. He had the sunny side of that Hill as his first vista every morning, drawing a deep energising breath as he indulged his eyes over its raw and changing face for over 90 years. It was under that Hill that he recreated a section of the Lartigue Train to relive the Lartigue experience of the late 1800s and early 1900s, to the amazement and delight of neighbours like Páidín Roche and Joe Kennelly.

To see Mick in the company of his late wife Sheila at a meeting or on a night out was to experience a team of two who worked well together. They added a colour and texture to many a Lisselton night. Together they rinsed the mundane from many a flat ordinary occasion and rendered it special with a half smile, a knowing nod or a ripened word.

The BPM offers its sincere sympathy to the Barry family.



Church Street Listowel July 2022


It’s Haytime

Photo; Michael O’Sullivan

It’s been a good year so far for the hay. God be with the old days.

Photo from the internet



Ronan Moore has a few more tips for us to keep the conversation flowing.


Roses at the Races

Dominick Walsh of Eye Focus was at Killarney Races and his lovely photos of Edaein O’Connell and some other Roses are appearing on in papers and online

Kerry Rose Edaein O’Connell and Galway rose Clare Ann Irwin and Escorts from the International Festival enjoy a evening of racing at Race Week in Killarney Co Kerry . . Photo By : Domnick Walsh © Eye Focus LTD . Domnick Walsh Photographer is an Irish Aviation Authority ( IAA ) approved Drone Pilot. Tralee Co Kerry Ireland. Mobile Phone : 00 353 87 26 72 033 Land Line        : 00 353 66 71 22 981 E/Mail : Web Site : ALL IMAGES ARE COVERED BY COPYRIGHT ©
13.7.2022 Killarney Races Killarney Co Kerry . Roses , Waterford Helen Geary , Wexford Joy Quigley , Killkenny Molly Coogan , Kerry Edaein O’Connell , Galway Clare Ann Irwin and Cork Jennifer Byrne and Escorts Brendan McSorley , Jamie Flannery , Gearoid McCarthy , Patrick Murphy , Sean Peyton and Shane McHugh from the International Festival enjoy a evening of racing at Race Week in Killarney Co Kerry . . Photo By : Domnick Walsh © Eye Focus LTD . Domnick Walsh Photographer is an Irish Aviation Authority ( IAA ) approved Drone Pilot. Tralee Co Kerry Ireland. Mobile Phone : 00 353 87 26 72 033 Land Line        : 00 353 66 71 22 981 E/Mail : Web Site : ALL IMAGES ARE COVERED BY Copyright


From Pres Yearbook 2009 2010

Many pupils were awarded for upholding the ethos of the school. I hope they and their families and friends will enjoy looking back on that happy time in Pres. Listowel


Hay in Ahanagran, a New Stand at Listowel Racecourse and more about Sonny Bill

Harvesting at Rattoo

Photo; Bridget O’Connor


Saving the hay

This lovely old photo was of a group of haymakers in a field in Ahanangran, Ballylongfond was posted line by Liam O’Hainnín.

The group, and we dont have names, is heading out for a day in the hayfield or maybe returning home from saving the hay.

I was fascinated to see the implement that they had tackled to their horse. I called it a Tumbling Paddy, Liam knew it as a slide and Elizabeth Brosnan used to call it a Haveller. I have mentioned it before because I have very clear memories of my father working with one. It was a big wooden rake like implement which the horseman pushed along gathering the hay as he went. When he had the makings of a wynn gathered he put the horses reins over his head and he tumbled the slide over, dumping the hay in a cock to be later made into a wynn by the other haymakers. He then had to side step around the heap of hay, retake control of his horse and start gathering again.


A Brand New Complex at The Island

John Kelliher took the photos on the occasion of the opening of the new stand and food hall. I can’t wait to see it. Here are just a few of the many photos John took on the night.


Kathleen McCarthy has a gifted Pair of Hands

Patchwork is just one of the many crafts Kathleen can turn her hand to. Every stitch in this masterpiece of 683 patches was hand sewn by Kathleen and the quilt is fully lined. Surely a heirloom to keep in the family for generations to come.


Lest we forget

Jim Halpin recently posted this heartbreaking video from a page called Flashback .

The Grimsby Chums 1916


Update on Sonny Bill from his new home in the U.K.

The following is from this month’s Horse and Hound

His new owner has high hopes for Sonny Bill in his future career in showing……and you saw him here first.

Friday Market, Hollymount, hay and Sceilig

Listowel’s Friday Market

I took my camera to the market in The Square last Friday and here are some of the sights I captured for posterity.

Sights of summer in Listowel


Remember these?

Ah, those pre computer days in the library !


Jim Corrigan

This man never rode the Tour de France but he is still a big hero in his native Dingle.


Sisters from Hollymount Convent, Centenary Book by Sr. Bridget Moloney Sister of Charity of Jesus and Mary

I have no names for these girls. Maybe someone knows who they are. The old book is for sale in Walter Lyons, Tralee.


Hay and Tae in Bromore

fine wynnd of hay on the farm by Bromore Cliffs, Balybunion


The force is with Sceilig Mhichíl

Star Wars film crew have begun filming on this beautiful rocky island off the Kerry coast. We can all see why this other worldly location was chosen. All good for our tourist trade…

Make hay while the sun shines

Summer 2013 was a great one for haymaking. Banished are the memories of farmers queueing for imported hay a few short months ago.


Ballybunion had a great season.

This is The Beach Mission. It has been coming to Ballybunion every August for 35 years. It is the best free entertainment you will get…a summer camp on the beach every day. I enjoyed introducing my grandchildren to the simple pleasures enjoyed by their parents over 20 years ago. They still organise a boys versus girls tug-o-war.

I took this picture on the Bromore Cliff Walk. If you have never walked here you have missed something wonderful.


KnitWits are still happily knitting and crocheting. Here we are in Scribes in July 2013.


Sad to see this shop close its doors


Traffic update from The Mayor of Listowel

Roadworks on the R552 Listowel-Ballylongford Rd between JB Keane R’bout and Bedford Cross continue until Friday. Delays expected.


Jer. Kennelly took this video of crowds leaving Croke Park on Sunday. You might see a few familiar faces;

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