Sean O’Casey Remembered in his own Community on Friday, March 6th

A special premier showing of the 30 minute documentary “Sean O’Casey lived here – A community remembers”, produced by Near TV and directed by Eoin McDonnell.

Sean O'Casey, playwright, communist, republican, Larkinite and thorn in the side of the hypocracy

Sean O’Casey, playwright, communist, republican, Larkinite and thorn in the side of the hypocracy

Last year marked the 60th anniversary of the death of playwright Sean O’Casey . This was commemorated by the local community of East Wall and the North Dock through performances and readings of his work both in the theatre named after him and on the streets he once walked. Plaques were unveiled at his childhood home and on the site of the former St. Barnabas Church.

These events were captured by Eoin McDonnell , and show the community celebration and events , and also interviews residents about the importance of O’Casey and his years living in the area .

Featuring performances in the Sean O’Casey theatre and from the PEG Drama & Variety Group , actors Vinnie McCabe and Neilí Conroy . Also includes broadcaster and life-long fan Joe Duffy and professor Christopher Murray (author of the definitive O’Casey biography ), and Ann Matthews (historian and author).

Evening will include refreshments at 7.30pm , screening at 8pm and Q+A (ie. chat) afterwards . All welcome to this free event .

Jim Larkin Commemoration Saturday, January 31st

Jim Larkin addressing a meeting in 1924 after his return to Ireland after his release from Sing Sing Prison in the United States for 'sedition'

Jim Larkin addressing a meeting in 1924 after his return to Ireland after his release from Sing Sing Prison in the United States for ‘sedition’

You are invited to attend SIPTU’s annual Jim Larkin commemoration in Glasnevin Cemetery, Dublin, at 11 am on Saturday 31st January, to mark the sixty-eighth anniversary of his death. Larkin brought the ‘new unionism’ to Ireland, successfully organising and mobilising unskilled and semi-skilled workers for the first time in the country’s history. In doing so he transformed the nature of the Irish trade union movement and ultimately the shape of modern Irish society.

Larkin’s ideas are as relevant today as when he first arrived on our shores in 1908. Irish unions are once more reaching back to relearn the lessons of the organising model he created.

This is the third in a new generation of Larkin commemorations, the first of which was in January 2013. We see these commemorations as part of a process to re-examine, evaluate and learn the lessons of Larkinism, which not alone gave Irishmen and women the confidence and capacity to stand up for their rights at work, but the aspiration to transform Ireland into a just society which cherished all of its people equally.

We hope you will attend and we look forward to engaging with you in this vital debate over the coming months and years at this critical period in our country’s history.

The First World War first hand at Collins Barracks – ANU Productions, who gave us Living the Lockout in 2013 give us Gallipoli in 2015

PALS: Untold Stories of the 7th Battalion of the Royal Dublin Fusiliers, at Gallipoli during the First World War.

NCOs in the Royal Dublin Fusiliers discover the delights of Fray Bentos tinned corned beef

NCOs of the Royal Dublin Fusiliers discover the delights of Fray Bentos tinned corned beef

“Historical insight; exciting artistry; and an intimate theatrical encounter with something previously hidden” – Colin Murphy, Irish Independent (on PALS).

Presented by ANU Productions, the National Museum of Ireland and the Department of Arts, Heritage and Gaeltacht and in association with the National Archives of Ireland and ICTU.

Where are the faces laughing in the glow
Of morning years,
the lost ones scattered wide?
Give me your hand,
Oh brother, let us go…

1915, Gallipoli. Amidst the heat and smell of the trenches, with No Mans Land on the horizon, the men of the newly formed 7th Battalion of the Royal Dublin Fusiliers stand shoulder to shoulder.

These are a team of rugby legends built from the strongest and bravest athletes in Ireland.

And they are about to play a deadly end-game.Award-winning innovators ANU Productions present a profound immersive adventure, based on the events surrounding WWI in Ireland.Inspired by the previously untold stories of the 7th Battalion of the Royal Dublin Fusiliers who swapped the rugby field for the battlefield – PALS will give audiences a vivid glimpse into the life and death of a brotherhood of players who were wiped out in the devastating trenches and the reality of those left behind.

Tickets and Performance Information

Performances: 2 February – 30 April / Wednesday – Sunday

Times: Wednesday – Saturday: 11am, 12pm, 2pm, 3pm & 4pm / Sunday: 2pm, 3pm & 4pm
Cost: €5
Location: National Museum of Ireland – Decorative Arts and History, Collins Barracks, Benburb Street, Dublin 7.

ANU Enrichment Programme

ANU is devoted to an interdisciplinary approach to performance and installation resulting in exceptional works that push the boundaries and conventions of performance to generate new experiences for audiences.

ANU’s Enrichment sits central to the companies priorities, development and way of working by inviting participants to come into direct proximity with the work of the company in meaningful, substantial and rewarding ways. ANU’s Enrichment generates immersive experiences that permeate the subject, context and relevance of ANU’s work.

Every Tuesday throughout the run – contact for more information.

Access Performances

Saturday 18 April – touch tour and audio described performances
Saturday 25 April – ISL signed performances
For more information, or to book tickets for any of the Access Performances, contact

Fianna Boy who participated in 1913 Lockout is remembered

Patsy O’Connor:

The lonely grave of a Fianna scout .

By Jason Walsh-McLean©

It was during the Lockout centenary year of 2013 that I finally got around to reading Pádraig Yeates’ seminal work on the subject Lockout – Dublin 1913. It had been purchased as a birthday present for me some years previously by my Mother.

Being a bit of a “trivia buff” when it comes to these things, I noticed upon completing the book that there was no mention of Patsy O’Connor of Na Fianna Éireann, whose name I had first come across many years previously in The National Graves Association 1985 publication The Last Post were it stated on page 39 “Patsy O’Connor of Na Fianna Éireann, died in 1915 as a result of wounds received during the strike”

I was also intrigued by the fact that his name does not appear on the plaque in the foyer of Liberty Hall which commemorates and names the Lockout Martyrs. – I decided to research this young man and try to find out as much as I could about him.

My first port of call was Pádraig himself, he told me the reason Patsy is not mentioned in the book was because he had simply came across nothing on          him during his research on the events of The Lockout which lasted from 26th August 1913  to 18th January 1914. Pádraig encouraged me to research him further.

I decided to try and ascertain his exact date of death and where he was buried. Knowing that The Irish Volunteer weekly newspaper was available online, and that it gave its back page to a regular column entitled “Na Fianna Éireann – National Boy Scouts” which reported on the activities of the Fianna. I began to study each edition from its inception on 7th Feb 1914 up to its last issue on the 22nd April 1916.

I located a full page obituary for Patsy in the edition for June 26th 1915 entitled Lieutenant Patsey O’Connor (Patsy was spelt Patsey throughout the article) which announced his death, though not its date and also stated he came from Harold’s Cross and that he had joined the Fianna in Camden Street “nearly six years ago” and was “then about twelve years of age” and that by the time of his death he was he was the Lieutenant in command of the Fianna Inchicore Sluagh.The unnamed author of the obituary who was in fact Pádraig Ó’Riain, informed the reader that both he and Patsy were involved in the Howth gun-running in July 1914 stating “Right well do I remember his gallant stand last July when we came into conflict with the police and military on the road from Howth. He was by my side when the police swooped down upon our ammunition cart that on that day.”



A photo of the Fianna with that very ammunition cart appeared a month later in the July 24th 1915 edition of The Irish Volunteer.


Dockers Preservation Society Calendar launched at Mansion House, Dublin, Thursday, November 20th, 2014

Dockers Preservation Society Calendar for 2015 being launched Mansion House on Thursday November 20th at 7.30pm. It costs €5 and funds will be used to promote work of the Society. Speakers include Eamon O’Reilly CEO of the Dublin Port Company, Jack O’Connor, General President of SIPTU and Ann Matthews, historian and author of The Irish Citizen Army, just Calendar 2015published

The Lepracaun Cartoons for 1913-14 now on view at Dublin City Libraries site

 The Lepracaun Cartoon Monthly and the 1913-1914 lockout Image Gallery

‘Capital is the child of Labour. Therefore the nipper’s present paroxysm of filial piety in Dublin is not so astonishing.’
Lepracaun Cartoon Monthly, November 1913.

‘Sometimes all we need to brighten our day is to rise a little higher. In wages.’
Lepracaun Cartoon Monthly, January 1914.

The Dublin-based Lepracaun Cartoon Monthly was launched in May 1905 by Thomas Fitzpatrick, one of Ireland’s foremost cartoonists of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Eclipsing in its lifespan all previous Irish comic periodicals, the Lepracaun would run for almost a decade. This meant that the publication was in a position to offer a vivid cartoon chronology of the great 1913-14 Dublin strike and lockout, although there would be no contribution from the Lepracaun’s founder and most prolific cartoonist, with the Cork-born Thomas Fitzpatrick having passed away in July 1912 at the age of 52.lockout 11

The two figures most associated with the lockout, however, did attract Fitzpatrick’s notice in the Lepracaun some years earlier. In December 1908 William Martin Murphy’s career was covered by the Lepracaun in an instalment of its full-page “City Celebrities” series, with the profile marvelling at Murphy’s vast range of business concerns. Fitzpatrick’s accompanying cartoon depicted his fellow Cork-man as a great conjurer plucking newspapers, railways, trams and a hotel out of an ‘inexhaustible’ finance hat. After speculating that there might actually be ‘a few limited companies in Dublin’ of which he was not a director, the satirical profile concluded by voicing a suspicion that Murphy’s sole regret in life was the ‘melancholy reflection’ that when he eventually passed away, ‘the Chancellor of the Exchequer will congratulate himself on the acquisition of the death duties of an Irish millionaire.

As chance would have it, Murphy’s great antagonist in 1913 was referenced by Fitzpatrick in the same issue of the Lepracaun. A half-page cartoon saw him earnestly hope that ‘Mr. Jim Larkin (a good name for a labour leader)’ would use his growing influence to ensure that Dublin hearse drivers did not become caught up in a carters strike. This would help avoid the potentially ‘appalling calamity’ of their jobs being carried out under police escort by strike-breaking replacements. This was no evidence of an innate aversion to strikes, for in the Lepracaun’s next issue Fitzpatrick unequivocally declared his support for the carters, wishing them ‘every success against the money-grabbers’, whom he portrayed in a cartoon as caring more about the welfare of their horses than the starving men they paid a pittance to drive them. In a separate cartoon from the same issue Fitzpatrick also found humour in the fact that clerks ordinarily employed in the ‘Sweatem’ company’s offices were being forced to endure the humiliating ordeal of becoming temporary dray drivers under police protection. Throughout his life Fitzpatrick was noted for the social conscience which he frequently exhibited in his work, with one obituary ending with the words, ‘He took down the mighty from their thrones, and lifted up the lowly’.


Plaque Marks Home of playwright Sean O’Casey in East Wall

Sean O'Casey PlaqueFor the first time a Plaque has been placed at Hawthorn Terrace to mark the house where Sean O’Casey lived in Dublin’s East Wall. It was unveiled by the playwright’s life long fan, Joe Duffy, on Sunday, November 2nd, 2014.

Irish Labour History Conference Beggars Bush November 1st, 2014 and Liberty Hall Talk on Larkin, October 23rd, by Emmet O’Connor

2014 ILHS Conference


ALSO: Thursday, October 23rd, at 6.30 pm: Dr Emmet O’Connor is giving a lecture in Liberty Hall on ‘An International Perspective: How international was Larkinism? How British was Larkin?’

This event is being organised by the Irish Labour History Society, in conjunction with the Dublin District Council of SIPTU. RSVP: Joan McClean 01-8588320.


German Mausers being unloaded from the Asgard on Sunday July 26th, 1914

German Mausers being unloaded from the Asgard on Sunday July 26th, 1914


Saturday, July 26th, 2014


Collins Barracks, Dublin  

10.00am Welcome with Raghnall O’ Floinn, Director, National Museum of Ireland

10.10am The Guns of July Professor Michael Laffan, University College, Dublin

10.30am Ulster Volunteer Force Gun-running, 1913-14 Dr Tim Bowman, University of Kent

10.50am The Gun-running: Planning and Personalities Sandra Heise, National Museum of Ireland

11.10am Q&A session chaired by Brian Crowley, Curator, Pearse Museum

11.20 – 11.50am COFFEE BREAK

11.50am At home on the Asgard: the Accounts of Mary Spring Rice and Molly Childers

Professor Lucy McDiarmid. Marie Frazee-Baldassarre Professor of English at Montclair State University

12.10pm The Life of Robert Erskine Childers Professor Rory Childers, University of Chicago (more…)

Irish Media Team wins four awards in New York – including Gold for Lockout documentary

Athena Media first Irish independent to win four awards at 2014 New York Festival Radio Awards

Therese McIntyre of Athena  accepts Award on Behalf of Company in New Yor

Therese McIntyre of Athena accepts Award on Behalf of Company in New York


Four Athena Media radio projects have brought home awards from this year’s prestigious New York Festival Radio Awards, winning two Gold, one Silver, and one Finalist award. Herosongs, our history meets song series (RTE Radio 1/BAI), won Gold in the best educational programming category; Citizens: Lockout 1913-2013, our landmark history series (RTE Radio 1/BAI) won Gold in best history programming; and our science series Science is Everywhere (Newstalk/BAI) won Silver in best science and technology programming. Our project James Joyce: The Dead, an illustrated reading by Barry McGovern, was also a Finalist in the best narration craft category.

Athena Media is the first Irish independent production company to have won four awards for multiple projects at the New York Festival Radio Awards.

Athena Media MD Helen Shaw said:

“It’s humbling to get such a response from an international jury of radio peers. It’s a fantastic tribute to the whole Athena Media team and to the support of the BAI Sound and Vision Scheme and UCD in supporting our work. We are delighted to make history as an Irish independent production company in the New York Festival Radio Awards and thank our broadcasters RTE Radio 1, RTE Lyric FM and Newstalk for their collaboration in the success of this work.” (more…)

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