Bringing together a varied and interesting range of events this month to commemorate 120 years of Irish local government, Galway's Great Read will see a month-long series of free talks, seminars and exhibitions take place in various venues around the county.
Commencing on November 4 in Clifden Library and concluding on November 22 in Balinasloe Library, Pumps, Piers and Potholes…120 years of Local Government, will be opened by Galway county cathaoirleach Cllr Jimmy McClearn where Prof Diarmaid Ferriter, of University College Dublin, will deliver the keynote address.
Galway’s Great Read is an annual programme of events developed and hosted by Galway Public Libraries, each November, to promote literary heritage, history and Galway’s unique culture, and to foster an appreciation for its diversity and richness. The Great Read is this year organised in association with the Galway County Council Archives and the heritage office of the Galway County Council, to mark the important anniversary of the establishment of local authorities, as we know them today.
Joint co-ordinator of the events programme, Sharleen McAndrew, said the programme will give audiences a chance to learn more about local authority system.
She said; “It is hoped Pumps, Piers and Potholes…120 years of Local Government will give audiences an opportunity to learn more about our local authority system and to enjoy, create, explore and actively engage with the events presented in the programme.”
Galway Women in Local Government from Mary Clancy of NUI Galway will open the programme in Clifden Library followed by Úna Kavangh will deliver a talk on Lady Clonbrock, Augusta Dillon (1839 – 1928 ) on Wednesday November 5 in Ballinasloe Library.
Meanwhile, in Tuam library on Thursday November 21, Dr Martin O’Donoghue and Dr Gabriel O’Connor will speak about Political Representations in North Galway and the Birth of the Tuam Town Commissioners (1916-23 ) respectively.
There are also two free half day seminars. The first is on Saturday November 16, in the Raheen Woods Hotel, Athenry. This includes a range of talks from 800 years of local government, Máirtín Mór McDonagh, and Lady Clonbrock to Galway’s Rural District Councils, delivered by Matthew Potter, University of Limerick, Jackie Uí Chionna, NUI, Galway, Úna Kavanagh NUI, Galway and Mary Clancy, NUI, Galway.
A hugely important aspect of this year’s Great Read is the educational one entitled Resolutions Through Art where different art facilitators worked with the senior classes of the national schools at Coolarne, Tullykyne and Cahergal to explore resolutions passed by the Galway County Council at its first meeting on April 22 1899.
The programme is funded under the Creative Ireland /Galway County Council Cultural and Creativity Strategy, 2018-2022. All events for Pumps, Piers and Potholes…120 years of Local Government are free but booking for the seminars is essential on Eventbrite.
Further details are available on www.facebook.com/librariesgalway and all are welcome.