Search Results for 'Thomas Burke'

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The romance of steam

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In late October 1890, Arthur J Balfour, nephew of the Conservative leader Lord Salisbury of the time, and recently appointed Chief Secretary of Ireland, went on a walking tour of the distressed districts along the Galway and Mayo coast. Accompanied only by his sister, and local officials who joined them as they passed through different districts, they travelled without police escort. Remembering that it was only eight years since the Phoenix Park Murders* it was a brave gesture. But Balfour was probably the best of them.** He was genuinely anxious to improve the conditions of the area. He had influence in London, and an imaginative grasp of his brief for Ireland. He met and talked with the local community leaders, listened to what they had to say; and sat by the open fires listening to the mná tí.

A mad time of year in Galway

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I do not think that it is a coincidence that the famous Galway Races coincide with the ancient festival of Lughnasa, celebrated on Garlic (Garland?) Sunday or, in the west, on the last Sunday in July. Máire Mac Neill, in her epic and scholarly study*, tells us that the date marked the most important farming benchmark of the year, the harvest, and it was robustly honoured. There were many Lughnasa gatherings throughout Ireland. Perhaps the most famous one in Connemara was at Mám Éan in the Maamturk mountains. People would camp out for days, musicians and hawkers would entertain the crowds; but the main event was a massive faction fight often resulting in serious injury or death.

Ballinasloe Enterprise Centre launch of BEST competition 2011

The Ballinasloe Enterprise Centre has recently launched the third annual BEST competition – Ballinasloe Entrepreneurial Skills Tournament.

Quarter-final places up for grabs in football championship

The intensity of club football goes up a few notches when the safety net is taken away and quarter-final places are at stake.

 

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