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: Women in Media 2019

Charles St., Women in Media 2019 and Teampall Bán

Easter in St. Mary’s


Charles Street/ Sráid Uí Chonghaile

Here is another example of a street with a name in English, by which it is known and a name in Irish which no one uses. I have also discovered that not only does no one I know use the Irish name but most of my friends  are unaware that there is an Irish name that is not a translation of the English.

In the case of Charles Street, local lore has it that the street was named by Lord Listowel after one of his sons.


Women in Media 2019

Here are a few of the local people I photographed in Ballybunion on Saturday April 28 2019


Teampall Bán

I had visitors for the weekend and, as well as going to two productions in St. Johns, a few panel discussions in Women in Media conference, and a brilliant seminar in Lixnaw I found a minute to bring them to Teampall Bán. They absolutely loved it and vowed to return.

They thought this gable mural by Maurice Pierse was both moving and prayerful.

They loved the little oratory and the stations of the cross.

They appreciated that there was somewhere to sit and contemplate all the history that is gathered in this place, a whole swathe of Listowel’s population wiped out by the Great Hunger.


The Workhouse

from the Dúchas Folklore collection

The Workhouse was built in 1841. In the famine years it was full up of people who had no food to eat and other houses were used as workhouses. One of these was the college and another Dowd’s house. The People who died in the workhouse were buried in Teampall Bán. In the year 1920 the workhouse was closed and the poor people were removed to the county Home in Killarney. 

The house next to the workhouse was turned into a convent in 1891. The mercy nuns lived here. Before that this house was occupied by a party of British horse-soldiers called the Scots’ Greys. They lived there from 1880 until 1883. One of these was drowned in the river and the place is now known as the Corporals’ hole

In 1922 the workhouse was burned down by the Republicans and at the present time a new hospital is being built.

Maurice Bambury

Street Names. Tae Lane, Women in Media and Construction at Greenville

Lidl on the John B. Keane Road, Listowel


When is Main Street not a street?

Answer; When it’s Listowel’s Main Street. Main Street is in fact a square. Listowel people recognise this and they call this part of town The Small Square.

Unlike other Listowel streets, Main Street is translated accurately into Irish as Príomh Sráid. But that is not how some of the businesses translate it.


The Tidy Town adjudicator loved this street name. Local people call it Tay Lane. No one says tea as in the beverage. The boutique goes for a combination of the Irish and English. It’s Taelane


Women in Media 2019

Will you look at me in exalted company, seated between two of the top women in Irish media, all three of us with a Kerry connection. Not really my new best friends but I was honoured to rub shoulders with them.

This years Women in Media conference had the usual line up of big names and in a trend I have noticed in recent years the events that draw the crowds are the political discussions featuring over- the -hill politicians.

Because it was such a huge weekend in this corner of the world I would have had to have bilocation or even triplication to attend all the events I wanted to see. I didn’t get to attend as much of this festival as I would have liked.

Storm Hannah put paid to Friday night’s opening event for me.  I would have loved to have heard Claudia Carroll, Sinead Moriarty and Felicity Hayes McCoy.

I made Saturday morning’s panel discussion ably chaired by Katie Hannon. The topic was the future of journalism and the panel had some really influential journalists, some young and some more experienced ladies. If you haven’t heard of Kinzen, look it up because it sounds like the future of journalism to me, quality trusted content tailored to you. You’ll have to pay for it but if you paid for print newspapers, then you will be surely willing to pay for news from a trusted source.

Newspapers as we know them are on the way out. Journalists are finding themselves behind a desk, downgraded to content providers. All of the panel were agreed that as long as there are stories to tell, there will be a need for people to tell them. The question is not will journalism survive but in what form.

Four of the top journalists on the panel. Dearbhail MacDonald, Lise Hand, Ellen Coyne and Aine Kerr.

The other panellist was Susan Mitchell, Deputy Editor, Sunday Business Post.

Katie Hannon facilitated the discussion. No better lady for the job.


Work Continues in Greenville


Good News 

A rapid response vehicle, dedicated to medical emergencies in North Kerry and West Limerick, has been launched this morning.

It is being coordinated by Irish Community Rapid Response to help save lives in rural communities.

The rapid response vehicle involves volunteer doctors working alongside frontline HSE emergency services to respond to life-threatening emergencies.

Source: Radio Kerry

Carmody’s Corner, Cough syrup, some Weekend events and Freddy Chute R.I.P.

 Carmody’s Corner

This was always the pick up point for Listowel Celtic players on their way to a match. 

Across the street is Jerome Murphy’s now All Regions

Maybe its time to take down the sign for the golf club.


This will soften your cough

A blog follower checked this out and found that it is not all it was cracked up to be.

According to Neatorama, One Night Cough Syrup was the subject of a legal case from 1934 in which the FDA ruled the drug’s “claims of its therapeutic properties” were misleading — because, you know, most of its main ingredients are highly addictive, harmful substances.


Busy Weekend in Store

Ballybunion has the usual star studded line up of guests for Women in Media 2019


Over the road a bit in Lixnaw there is a great free local event

The Drama Festival continues in St. John’s


+  Fred Chute R.I.P. +

The radio has been silent for a while now. Today, April 26 2019,  we bury the radio’s owner. Fred was a familiar face on the streets of Listowel as he went about his business of beautifying our town and playing his part in making it the artistic gem it is.

I took these photos of Fred as he did one of his last painting jobs, when he was already ill.

Fred was my neighbour and friend. I had huge respect for his work and he had huge respect for mine. He loved my piece on him in my book and he loved to see himself on the blog.

He would drive slowly by me and roll down the window to tell me that he had heard me on the radio and he loved what I said. We were like Nancy Pelosi and Bono:  from different worlds but massive fans of one another. This is why I dared to interrupt him in his work to ask him to smile for his relatives in the U.S. who follow the blog.

Listowel is the poorer for the passing of one of its great visual artists. He has left a great legacy of colourful paintwork to Listowel. I hope that future generations will respect and preserve it.

I extend here my deepest sympathy to his devoted partner, Teresa, to Priscilla and Hunter, to my friend, Roly, Fred’s brother,  and to all who loved Fred.

Rest in peace, my friend.

Convent Cross, 1916 Commemorative Manhole Cover, Kennedy Home, Holy Wells and Buying a Duck

 Calvary at Convent Cross


Manhole Cover

Because Listowel was undergoing road repairs in 2016 when these special commemorative manhole covers were commissioned we have a few of these at locations around the town. This one is on Upper Church Street.


Kennedy Home Then And Now


Holy Wells on the Move

( from Dúchas school folklore collection)

Local Place Names
Collector Jeremiah Clancy- Age 11-Informant, Patrick Ahern, Age 70, Occupation, labourer
In a farm in Gortdromagowna owned by Thomas OConnor there stands a well called St. Mary’s well. The field is known as the Blessed Well Field. People from this parish and the surroundings go there to pay their rounds in May.

The Blessed Well
Collector Annie Heffernan, Tarmon West.
There is a blessed well in Mr. John Buckley’s field. It is St. Senan’s Well. There is a story connected with this well. First it was situated in Kelly’s land and now it is relocated to its present loacation.

It is said that the servant of the house took water from this well to wash clothes and next morning it had disappeared.

Many people go to the blessed well during the year to pay rounds. They go on the Saturday before May, and on the Saturday before St. John’s Day.


Buying a Duck at the April Horsefair

On April 4 2019 on Market Street Listowel I came upon this family taking a great interest in the poultry seller and particularly his ducks. He had  a variety of healthy looking young ducks for sale.

This little man was very adamant that this was the one he wanted. Even though the duck was heavier than he anticipated, he was delighted with his new purchase.


Good Job, Firemen

Photo; John Curtin

Extensive damage was done to this Ballybunion premises on Friday night. Our hard working fire  fighting personnel did a good job and thankfully there was no loss of life.


Women in Media

The full programme has been revealed.

official promotional photo

See what’s in store;

Women in Media 2019

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