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

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Sunshine in Listowel

She’s back! Molly Madra is back for her Kerry holidays. We are out walking at the crack of dawn to beat the heat.


Kerry Pride

Danny pinning his colours to the mast in a lovely display in The Small Square.


How to End the Conversation, Irish Style


Some Fifth Year Classes


Kayaking Tours

This fantastic shot is from Jason ODoherty of Ballybunion Kayaking Tours. The Kayak is in The Nine Daughters’ Hole, Ballybunion.


Old William Street Shops

Photos shared online by Mike Hannon

Kennelly’s Cloth Hall
O’Sullivan’s ( later Opticians)
Relihan.s william St.


Plaza Cinema

Bridge to Listowel Racecourse over flooded Feale in June 2022


William or Patrick?

William Street, Listowel, in Irish is rendered as Sráid and Phiarsaigh, just one of many street naming puzzles in Listowel.


Plaza Cinema

Here are the rest of the great old film posters that Norma O’Connor sent us.

If any one has a story relating to any of these films, we’d love to hear it. First date maybe, disastrous date or the best night of your life.

Norma sent us the schedule for some of these films in The Plaza, Church Street, Listowel.

The Law and Order with Ronald Reagan showed on 3/06/1956

A girl in every port – 6/09/1954

Lost in Alaska – 13/02/1955

Run for Cover – 06/11/1956

The Virgin Queen – 19/11/1956

Suddenly – 27/11/1955

Malta Story – 14/02/1955


Listowel Writers’ Week 2022; Friday Walk

One of the really enjoyable events for patrons of Writers’ Week is the daily morning walks.

Vincent Carmody made these rambles around town a feature and he is still the most knowledgeable walking guide.

I have learned from a master and now I am delighted to guide a Morning Walk. This year it was on Friday, June 3.

My walk is much like my blog, totally random and with a lot of help from my friends.

This is the 2022 team. Kay Caball is the historian, Seán Stack with a lot of help from Mary Fagan is in charge of sound, Clíona McKenna reads a bit and acts as my assistant and prompter, Paddy McElligott is in charge of all the tenor numbers, Mary Moylan is the musician and singer extraordinaire and Éamon ÓMurchú reads eloquently from the work of Joseph O’Connor.

Because I am otherwise engaged, I don’t get to take too many photos but I got a few.

Kay Caball regaling the walkers with tales of The Fitzmaurices and their adventures.

With some walkers before we set off from The Listowel Arms.

I met this lady on Opening Night and she told me she’d come even though she isn’t too keen on walking. I assured her that calling this event a walk is a grave misnomer.

This is me in full flight, telling a tale or two.


A Poem About How it Is


A poem, Covid 19, Duhallow Knitwear and an old Áras Mhuire photo

Lower William Street in 2016


A Timely Poem


Duhallow Knitwear, a Listowel Connection

I included this old advertisement last week. It prompted Mike Moriarty, whose family ran Moriarty’s on William Street for years to tell us his memories of Duhallow and the Sheehan family.

                 My parents would have done business with Duhallow down through the years. I still have vivid memories of their rep, Tim Vaughan. The brand was very highly rated by our customers. Once a year we would visit the factory with our parents, This was at a point of the year when they would be selling “seconds”. Now you would be hard pressed to find a flaw in these garments but the regular customers to our shop could not get enough of them.

                  There was a strong personal bond between the owner, John Sheehan, and the retailers. We would have been entertained in his house. Indeed, when my brother, Ned, died John Sheehan, although quite frail, made his way to Listowel to the funeral. Later, when John himself passed away I was in Kanturk to represent the family at the wake in his house.


Mike Moriarty.

P.S. “Hose” was/is simply socks. Eventually I guess it referred to knitwear generally.


Áras Mhuire

I took this at a birthday party in Áras Mhuire a few years ago.


More of Mike O’Donnell’s Covid Cartoons


Old Neighbours, New Neighbours

Patrick Godfrey who has family  roots in Charles Street shared this photo of Mrs Moloney and Mrs Stack with us.

Marie Nelligan Shaw saw this photo of her old Charles Street neighbours and sent us this photo.

This is Mrs. Stack’s daughter, Doreen, celebrating her 80th birthday last year. Doreen and Marie are now neighbours in New York.


It’s a Fact

Rounded corners on electronic devices have been patented by Apple. 

(From Facts to make your Jaw Drop)

Foggy landscapes, Roadworks and Enterprise Town Expo

The North Wind doth blow

And we shall have snow

And what will poor robin do then, poor thing?

Well it’s not exactly snowing, but there is cold snap in the air these days and mornings are misty and foggy.


Early Morning fog

Work is continuing on the extension to the Community Centre.

Schiller through the mist.

Holocaust Memorial in the fog

This pruning and clearing was going on last week.

Roadworks on William Street are nearing completion.


Bank of Ireland Enterprise Town event

We had a great night in Listowel Community Centre on Friday evening November 25 2016. Pierce and Fitzgibbon gave us a bag to collect all the loot and freebies, Aoife Hannon made a hat, we had a snatch of Riverdancing, an interview with a handsome New Zealand rugby player, the Primary School band under the baton of Anne Brosnan and a fashion show. That’s just a small taste of what went on.

The BOI welcoming group

Handing out the loot bags

Marguerite with the Pres. girls

Trants Pharmacy was just one of the many stands running a competition on the night. I din’t win.

This lady is Denise Mullane of BOI. She was the MC for the evening as well as the very able organiser of things.

The convent primary band with some of the audience.

Angeline was in character for some of her roles at The Seanchaí

I looked away quickly from Centra’s oh so tempting display

I bought a lovely journal from the Love Listowel range at The Seanchaí stand.

Holding the fort at the McGuire’s Pharmacy stand.


The Countdown has started

Drama,Rock Concerts in Gaelic Park in 1969 an old post box in Cashel and a Deed of Blood in North Kerry

Listowel Town Square


Another Old one from a Kerry’s Eye supplement


They Rocked Gaelic Park in 1969

Talk about the summer of ’69. What a line up of concerts!

Where did I find it?

Ciarán Sheehan shared it on Facebook


William Street


Singing his Heart Out

Photo is from Belfast . The photographer is unknown.


This Edward V11 postbox is in Cashel.  Photo from Twitter


A Deed of Blood

Land has always caused trouble in Ireland and in the not very distant past dreadful deeds were done in the name of our right to land. We all know the story of John B. Keane’s The Field and nowMark Holan in his latest blog post has nosed out another gory story from our recent past. Mark writes a great Irish American blog and, because his Irish roots are in Kerry, he often writes about our neck of the woods.

Let me here apologise to any descendants of the people named. I don’t post this to malign anyone or to dig up painful family history, merely to recount historical facts and to remind ourselves of man’s inhumanity to his fellow man.

Land-related violence in
late 19th century Ireland were euphemistically known as “agrarian outrage.” …

For several years now I’ve
been exploring Ireland’s Land War period, 1879-1889. In particular, I’ve
focused on the 1888 murders of farmers James Fitzmaurice and John Foran, which
occurred within six months and just a few miles of each other in the northern
section of County Kerry, home of my Irish ancestors. Both men were condemned as
“landgrabbers” for leasing property after other farmers were evicted. In the
case of Fitzmaurice, the previous tenant was his brother.

In the 1880s, the Irish
National League (or Land League) was waging a campaign to break the grip of absentee
landlords, who controlled tens of thousands of acres. Farmers were called to
refuse paying their rents until lower rates and other rights could be
negotiated. When tenants were evicted for these or other reasons, the League
declared that the acreage should remain fallow and not be leased by other

Because Fitzmaurice and
Foran did not abide these strategies, they were condemned by League
officials and subjected to social and economic ostracism, known as boycotting.
Notices of their offenses were posted near the leased property and at local
market places. Each man received limited police protection, but both of them
fatally waved off the security.

The 68-year-old
Fitzmaurice was shot point blank by two assailants near Lixnaw, Kerry, on 31
January 1888. His daughter Nora, about 20, witnessed the murder in the “cold
grey dawn of morning,” according to a 16-page political pamphlet titled,
“A Deed of Blood,” published a few weeks after the crime.

“A Deed of Blood” was
produced by the Irish Loyal and Patriotic Union, an alliance
of Irish businessmen, landowners and academics who sought to preserve the
existing political ties with Great Britain. The group was formed in 1885 to
oppose efforts by Charles Stuart Parnell and the Irish Parliamentary Party of
to win land reform and limited domestic autonomy, called home rule.

The pamphlet quoted from
newspaper coverage of the Fitzmaurice murder, as well as original reporting.
It appeared in mid February 1888, shortly after two men were charged with
the murder, but before their trial, conviction and execution by hanging at the
end of April. For the ILPU, the crime was “yet another link … added to the
strong chain of evidence connecting the National League with the latest murder
in Kerry.”……………..Mark Holan


Did I ever think I’d live to see the day?

This is Seamus Eoinín, the oldest man living at the foot of Ceann Sibéal. Seán Mac an tSíthigh took this photo of him last week as Seamus was out enjoying the Star Wars buzz.


Annual Eucharistic Procession tomorrow 

Our Eucharistic Procession, this year, is to take place after the Vigil Mass of the Feast of Corpus Christi on Saturday next 28th May after the 6.15pm. Leaving the Church at 7.00pm. proceeding through the Square, William Street, turning left at McKenna’s Corner, through Market Street, Convent St., keeping left at the Convent Cross, past the Presentation Secondary School and turning right into the Hospital Grounds and ending outside the Árd Cúram Centre (North Kerry Day Care Centre) where Benediction will take place. There will be an opportunity to visit this beautiful Centre also after Benediction. All are welcome, refreshments will be served after in the Centre.

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