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Tag: Ladies Day 2017

WW1 Poem, people at Ladies Day 2017, some timeless Kerry humour and Culture Night 2017 in Listowel

Photo: Chris Grayson


A Poem from The Trenches of WW1 is uncovered

This photo and story is from The Irish Post

The photograph was taken at Cornelius’ home at 40 Shannon Street in Bandon after his return from the war.

It shows the O’Mahoney family posing for the camera in front of their humble Co. Cork home – their graceful mother sat wearing a smile, exuding pride.

A MOVING poem written
by an Irish soldier during World War One has been unearthed in an attic in
Britain over a century on.

Peter ‘Derry’ McCarron was
clearing the house of his late mother in Kendal, Cumbria when he discovered the
poem within a stack of old documents.

The verses were written by his
great-uncle Cornelius O’Mahoney, who was born at 40 Shannon St (now Oliver
Plunkett St) in Bandon, Co. Cork in 1889.

Cornelius was 26 when he fought
in the Dardanelles, Turkey in 1915 for the 1stRoyal Munster
Fusiliers – who lost over a third of their regiment during the Great War.

His beautiful poem – titled
simply ‘The Royal Munster Fusiliers’ – was dedicated to the “memory of our dear
comrades who died in Seddul-Bahr, April 25 1915.” It reads:

‘They are gone, they are gone

Yet their memory shall cherish

Our brave boys who perished

And crossed over the bar

O’er their graves now the wild hawk

Doth mournfully hover
In that lone weary jungle

Of wild Seddul-Bahr

In the highest of spirits they

Went through the Dardanelles

And scattered their rifles

O’er the hills afar

Not knowing their days

On this Earth they were numbered

When the regiment arrived
In wild Seddul-Bahr

Shot down in their gloom

And the pride of their manhood

But God’s will be done

’Tis the fortune of war

With no fond mother’s words

To console their last moments

Far, far from their homesteads

In wild Seddul-Bahr.

May they rest, may they rest

Unhallowed in story

Tho’ their graves they are cold

Neath that lone Turkish star

Yet their presence is missed

From the ranks of the Munsters

Our heroes who slumber

In wild Seddul-Bahr.’

Following the Royal Munster
Fusiliers’ disastrous campaign in the Dardanelles, Cornelius O’Mahoney’s unit
was redeployed to the Western Front after a humiliating retreat.

“It was a case of out of the
frying pan and into the fire,” Derry, who was delighted to discover his
great-uncle’s moving stanzas so many years on, told The Irish Post.

“Cornelius thankfully survived
the Western Front and most of his family went to England after the warFollowing
the Irish War of Indepencence, the Irish Civil War and establishment of the
independent Irish Free State in 1922, The Royal Munster Fusiliers were

On June 12 of that year, five
regimental Colours were laid up in a ceremony at St George’s Hall, Windsor
Castle in the presence of HM King George V.

Nevertheless, the regiment chose
to have its standard remain in St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Dublin.

The Royal Munsters won three
Victoria Crosses in total during the Great War.

“Cornelius died in Shanakiel, Co.
Cork in the late 1950s. His youngest son John Joe stayed in Bandon and died
only around 15 years ago,” Derry said.

He added: “I found his poem among
old documents when we cleared my mother’s house in Cumbria. It was a beautiful

Derry kindly provided The
Irish Post
with a picture of a young Cornelius with his mother, two
brothers, and two sisters taken almost a century ago.


He who loves himself will never be short of admirers

Picture shared by Banksy on Twitter. Words of wisdom from an old sage.


More from Ladies Day 2017

I spotted Yankee Doodle making his way among the crowd.

Mary O’Halloran can be depended on to look stylish and beautifully co ordinated and groomed.

Our own Donal Lynch with some well dressed contenders.

This lady had half a bird on her head for the jazzy hat competition.

The style on the stage was matched by the style in the audience.

 Junior met an old friend at The Races

Joan and Caroline Kenny were at The Races with Helen Holyoake of Houston (and formerly Listowel)


Vincent Doyle sent us a laugh

This great story was recorded in 1938 by a Moyvane lad, William Kiely. 

Humour is timeless.


Culture Night 2017

I was not in town for Culture Night this year. I was in Tralee. I’ll tell you about that tomorrow. But I have curated a collection of photos from Facebook, describing the great night I missed.

Listowel Writers’ Week took a leading role in Culture Night activities of Friday September 22 2017. They organised Poetry in Locomotion in collaboration with the Lartigue Monorail and they held the Listowel launch of Fergal Keane’s book of love and war in The Listowel Arms.

Other events for Culture Night were held in St. John’s and The Seanchaí.  Finuge held its own very popular event. All in all, l a great night! I won’t miss it next year.

The watermarked photos are by John Kelliher. The others were taken by Máire Logue.

Artists in residence at Olive Stack Gallery

Audience for Fergal Keane’s launch of his new book, Wounds

Invited dignitaries for Poetry in Locomotion

Daughter Pippa joined Liz and Jim Dunn for the evening’s activities.

Meanwhile in Finuge the audience gathered to watch themselves and their neighbours in old archive films.

Last minute preparations before he releases his book to a very appreciative audience.

Fergal Keane with local poet and author, Gabriel Fitzmaurice

Holding the fort while Olive is in Paris

Listowel literary royalty,  first cousins, Joanna, Billy and Fergal

Fergal Keane with the best organiser of a literary event, Máire Logue of Listowel Writers’ Week

Poets and poetry lovers at The Lartigue

Meanwhile across the square in St. John’s, Vicar Joe was hosting a sell out concert with Sean Keane

Seán Keane fans enjoyed a great night. They are already looking forward to his return.

Meanwhile in The Seanchaí…..

The Hahah, Killarney, pensions in Australia and more from Ladies Day 2017

Grey Squirrel by Chris Grayson


The Hahah, Killarney

In this little corner of Killarney where the jarveys wait for a fare and feed and water their horses, there is an interesting shrine.

Around the corner from here are 2 lovely urban buildings; the town hall and the Plaza Hotel.


School Traffic

I accompanied by little cailíni to school last week. Thank God we were on foot.


Getting the Pension in Australia in 1899


Ladies’ Day 2017

It’s always great to meet friends at The Races. Here I am with my friends, the O’Sullivans.

Great to catch up with Máire, Keelin and Judy

Daithí is well used to posing with pretty ladies. Imelda and Helen obliged him.

West Limerick ladies

The jazzy hat competition brought out some fabulous creations

Local ladies, Vourneen, Norah, Betty and Margaret were paying attention to action on the track.

Cliona places another losing bet.


Farm Safety

Photo: Donal O’Leary

Two sixth year students, Padraig Hunt and Michael Murphy won the Safe Family Farm Competition for schools at The recent National Ploughing Championships 2017.

Their win was timely in a week that saw another two fatal farm accidents added to the list of such accidents we are hearing about lately.

With their Ag. Science teacher, Fiona Griffin, the boys came up with a plan to get an aerial map of the family farm and to highlight danger areas. This map would be of use to the farm family as well as visitors or farm workers

Listowel Folk Group, St. Mary’s Church of Ireland, Killarney and more from Ladies Day 2017

Doe, a deer….

Mother and babe by Chris Grayson


Listowel Folk Group Bid Farewell to Ballinskelligs

Photos from Listowel Folk Groupon Facebook

For some years not, the parish folk group have been taking a welcome summer break in Ballinskelligs. Now the house where they used to stay is up for sale and sadly, those happy summer days are now just a memory.

The congregation at Saturday evening mass in St. Mary’s continue to enjoy their music and singing.


Tarrant’s of Market Street Repainted


St. Mary’s, Killarney, Church of the Sloes

St Mary’s (Church of Ireland) Killarney, is a beautiful church in the heart of Killarney which serves a small congregation as well as tourists. There is evidence as far back as the 1200s of a Church in this area. More significantly the name of the Town itself Killarney (in Irish: Cill Airne) means Church of the Sloes.

I visited this church recently and I took a few photos of the many beautiful windows and fittings.


More from Ladies’ Day 2017

It was great to meet so many local people making the Ladies’ Day style effort.

I was very surprised not to see this eye catching outfit on the podium. It seems to be the year of block colours. Florals or prints did not seem to get a look in with this year’s judges.

This looks to me like that fruit bowl creation which won at Galway. No joy at Listowel but you must agree it looks stunning.


Culture Night 2017

Fergal Keane will return to his father’s hometown on Friday Sept. 22 2017 to launch his new book.

Venue: Listowel Arms Hotel

Time; 7 to 8 p.m.

I took a few photos of Fergal when, as part of Listowel Writers Week 2017,  he read  his father’s lovely piece of writing for the introduction to Vincent Carmody’s North Kerry Camera.

Fergal Keane with Paddy Keane

with Kay Caball

with Eamon OMurchú

Fergal Keane reading to an enthralled audience

Listowel Folk Group, Allos and More from Ladies’ Day 2017

Chris Grayson on the Dingle peninsula


Listowel Folk Group Stroll Down Memory Lane

The folk group pictured below on an away trip to Ennis, delved into the old photograph album and found these photos from their days in a Harvest Festival  fancy dress parade.


Ladies’ Day 2017

This Tote mobile unit was a godsend. I love to interact with a human being rather than a machine.

Cliona was enjoying a spot of reminiscence. She used to sell race cards when they were only €1.50

Contender for the jazziest hat. Lovely outfit too.

Two stylish local couples

Some people made sure they would be noticed by the best dressed judges.


My Favourite Restaurant

Allos of Church Street is my favourite restaurant, bar none. Recently it was the featured eatery in Listowel Food Fair’sexcellent Facebook page. (Photo and text from Listowel Food Fair)

Allos: The Food Story 

An established favorite in not just Listowel but throughout the Southwest region attracting diners from all around the Kingdom and West Limerick. 

The welcome in Allo’s is famous, greeted by Helen Mullane who without doubt is one of the finest host’s one could hope to meet, so attentive to each individual guest while ensuring a high standard service is delivered. A native of Newcastlewest she grew up on a farm where her mother Nell was an avid Gardener and cook who used the farming produce of Beef, Chickens, Ducks with herbs and vegetables to feed her family and any visitors who came to their Farm. 

When younger, Nell went to Drishane in Cork to learn the precise skills of cooking and maintaining a prim household, these skills she passed on to her daughter Helen who then applied to her own life. On leaving home Helen went to New York City, where she began her career at the Twin Towers in a Restaurant called Windows of the World which was the Tallest Restaurant in the World at the time. It was here she learnt the finer points of dining, front of house and fine wines. Arriving back from America, Helen worked with her brother Daniel Mullane in the famous Mustard Seed Restaurant at Ballingarry, Co Limerick.

It was while at the Mustard Seed that she met Armel Whyte. 

Like Helen, Armel comes from a family immersed in food that is quite simply from farm to fork. His mother who was born in Moyvane, grew up on a farm in Shanagolden, Co Limerick where they had an abundance of fresh produce. Armel’s grandmother was a wonderful cook and baker and from her Armel discovered the rearing and killing of fowl & animals to the cooking of them. Jams, Marmalades and also jelly’s from the orchards were another feature of their country life.

Armels paternal grandmother Peig lived in the heritage town of Fethard in County Tipperary, where the family ran a garage shop, and where she baked. So from every side food really was a constant theme running through his childhood.

While still attending Secondary School, Armel initially started doing bar work at the Shannon Shamrock in Bunratty, and during the summer worked in the kitchen at the Two Mile Inn, in Limerick. His first official start as a trainee chef was at the Greenhills Hotel, in Limerick under Head Chef Michael Kennedy, who had worked in a number of hotels in London. Following on from this stint he attended college in Galway before arriving at the Mustard Seed. He later then spent a year in Switzerland reading in a private hotel school. 

When he returned Armel & Helen decided to open a restaurant in beautiful South Kerry in Caherdaniel. The restaurant was called the Loaves and the Fishes, and during their time there, it picked up many accolades including a Michelin Red.

After six seasons, they moved to Listowel and Allo’s was purchased originally in the Sheehy Family whose uncle Alphonsus and wife Nora May ran it. Alphonsus was affectionately known as Allo so hence the name! A curiosity many people have pondered over. 

This Listowel Races will see the restaurant open 22 years making it Listowel’s longest running family run restaurant. No mean feat and the fruit of lots of fun hard work and milk under the bridge. The draw for this special place has never waned throughout all those years, due to the outstanding food served inside its four walls. The menu, inspired by the Irish countryside, nearby Atlantic and thus graced with fresh fish and meat including its 30 Day Dry Aged Beef. A general house rule is that the fresh produce must be sourced within 15 miles of the restaurant. 

Armel and Helen are keen to point to out that the success of Allo’s would not have been achieved without the long-standing members of staff Theo Lynch, Gerry McGinty, Diane Cannafin, Ciara Mulvhill, Sarah Mulvihill, Peter James and many more.

A jewel in the town, it’s accolades are many but foremost being: 

Restaurant Association Awards

Best Gastro Pub in Kerry 2017

Best Gastro Pub in Kerry 2015

Best Chef in Kerry – Theo Lynch in 2015

Georgina Campbell Casual Dining Restaurant of the year 2015 

NKM in Listowel, Johnny O’Leary and Ladies’ Day at Listowel Races 2017

Photo: Chris Grayson


NKM in Listowel

Recently I got this email from a new blog follower.

Just back from a trip to Dublin I was thrilled to come across your blog and discover a note on the opening of the NKM sweet factory by my maternal grandfather Tom Armstrong- thank you so much for creating your blog .I now live in the Baltic States and its wonderful to have a contact with Listowel where my mother was born – Patrick Armstrong McCrea

I put Patrick in touch with Vincent Carmody and they have had some very productive email correspondence since.


Sliabh Luachra Music

This lovely memorial to the great Johnny O’Leary is in Killarney


Ladies’ Day 2017

 RTE and TG4 were out in force and beautifully presented

Daithí OSé was ultra obliging and posed with anyone who asked

Two Kerry legends, our own Jerry Hannon and Carrachán’s Daithí ÓSé

Beautifully turned out local ladies

Just one more Rose for 2017


Good News from Ottawa

Listowel was awarded five blooms, which is the top award in Communities in Bloom competition in Canada. Listowel also got a special recognition for its community fruit and nut garden.

Hopes are high for September 25th when the results of the Tidy Town competition will be announced. Listowel is hopeful of another gold medal. We all agree we deserve it. Everyone has worked so hard.

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