Rooftop auction for WB Yeats tower this Sunday

A 40 per cent cut in funding for the arts has meant that a local committee in Galway is having to go it alone to restore WB Yeats’ former home of Thoor Ballylee. The Yeats Thoor Ballylee Development committee will hold a fundraising evening at the tower this Sunday, May 31.

The auction will take place on the rooftop of the tower with local auctioneer, Colm Farrell MIPAV, acting as William Butler Yeats. Funds raised will be used to re-open the tower to the public 13 days later, with the greatest Yeats party in Ireland to commemorate the 150th birthday of William Butler Yeats. The fundraising event will get national and international recognition with press present during the event.  

For more information on auction items, donors, companies, and local hotels see

Sunday’s auction will include lots such as the Complete Works of JM Synge, first edition (printed by Maunsel & Co, Dublin 1910 ); tickets for five opening nights at the Abbey Theatre; five copies of WB Yeats and His Muses, signed by author Joseph Hassett; two nights at Revyle House Hotel in Connemara, where Yeats and his wife George spent their honeymoon; and a two night stay with the Flynn Hotel Group. A full list of items will soon be featured on the Thoor Ballylee website.

The society plans to develop a world class cultural centre in the tower, which would provide a huge attraction for the area and boost tourism revenues for the region. The tower will accommodate a new Yeats exhibition, a cafe, bookshop, and space for exhibitions, lectures, and classes. Despite this, there are no Government funds available to restore this cultural jewel.

Supporters can become a Thoor Ballylee friend for €25 and will be regularly informed on the progress of the project and the use of all funds. For more details see  

For more information, or to offer donations for the auction, contact Colm Farrell at 086 245 5925, email [email protected], or Deirdre Holmes at 087 412 77 07, email [email protected].


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