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: Saddle Bar

Convent Bell, Opening of The Garden of Europe and NKRO

Canon’s Height, Listowel in March 2020


Convent Bell

The bell from Listowel’s Presentation Convent now sits beside St. Mary’s Parish Church.


Official Opening of Garden of Europe

Listowel’s Garden of Europe has a strong German presence and that has been so since its opening. The Garden was a project of Listowel Rotary Club and the idea was to have a garden representing each country of the European Union and as well as plants from that country it would have a piece of statutory  representing someone famous who came from the country.  Germany was the only country that responded to a request for a piece of sculpture. They sent us Schiller. So it was decided to make a kind of German Garden of Europe in a gesture of peace and reconciliation.

The photographs below were taken by John (Junior) Griffin and feature Mervyn Taylor a Jewish T.D. who did the honours, members of the Jewish Irish community and members of Listowel Rotary Club.


October 2011 in The Saddle Bar

This traditional musical event was organised by NKRO (North Kerry Reaching Out). This group was the brainchild of Ger Greaney (in the blue shirt below). It functioned for a few years before eventually folding due to everyone having other commitments and Ger’s moving away from Listowel.

Dates for the diary

Listowel is associated in the popular consciousness with horses and racing. It is not surprising, therefore that pubs and housing estates are given horsey titles.  Harness makers like the late Pat Finucane (picture from Vincent Carmody’s North Kerry Camera) were constantly busy and there were blacksmiths on every corner. Maybe someone will one day write for us about all those old trades and the people who plied them locally.

That was then and this is now.  One of the few mentions of harness in town is in the title of this hostelry. And its to this pub that everyone is heading on Friday night next , October 14. North Kerry Reaching Out is holding its first Irish Culture Night. There will be a lively trad. session from 9.30. If you can sing or play an instrument, come prepared to join in. We will be holding a raffle with many prizes.  We are all hoping for a great night of music and craic.

Next date for the diary is actually the very next day. On Saturday morning next at 11.00a.m. the Marion Finucane Show on RTE Radio 1 is holding a review session on the books short listed for this year’s Booker Prize. One of the participants in this event will be Sean Lyons, the new chairman of Listowel Writes Week. Tune in at 11.00 on Saturday to hear Sean and to learn about his taste in literature.

Third and final date for now: On October 18 North Kerry Reaching Out will hold an informal genealogy session in the beautiful Family Centre off the John B. Keane Road. We intend to help one another to look up online records and websites and to have a cup of tea and a chat. Since the centre has only 16 computers, we have to limit the numbers for this one. Email if you would like to join us.

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