Posts Tagged ‘Ghost Sign’

I’ve always liked this old school advertisement for Elvery Sports, in the laneway opposite The Oval pub. Elvery’s is Ireland’s oldest sports shop, founded in 1847. It’s long been a staple of Dublin and indeed Irish life, with strong links to domestic sports. The Elvery’s at the bottom of O’ Connell Street was one I always had a soft spot for, owing to the reappearing Saint Patrick’s Athletic F.C jersey in the window. Behind enemy lines, looking pretty on the northside.

There is a great story told in the wonderful Forth The Banners Go book, taking in the reminiscences of William O’ Brien, where he retells a tale about James Connolly being arrested outside this Elvery’s for a series of public speeches he had given in Dublin, breaking a proclamation forbidding any meetings being held.

That Elvery’s is gone now, making the above a ‘ghost sign’.

It’s been replaced with this:

A newsagents named after ‘The Liberator’, and former Lord Mayor of Dublin Daniel O’Connell. Directly opposite his statue, it’s sure to do a roaring trade in postcards, miniature busts of the man himself and student bus tickets.

It’s not the first newsagents on the street to tip its hat in the direction of history however. Further down the street, and on the same side, you come to this:

Sackville Street was, of course, the name of O’ Connell Street before the establishment of the Irish Free State.The name ‘Sackville Street’ was in honour of one time Lord Lieutenant of Ireland Lionel Cranfield Sackville, Duke of Dorset.

The ruins of Sackville Street, 1916.

Interesting nods to the past, from the most unlikely of sources.

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What links this familiar ghost sign and my favourite street name in Dublin?

(Th)e Confectioner’s Hal(l), O'Connell Street. (Picture - Lisa Cassidy)


Or to be more precise, the Lemon family.

They were the proprietors of the above ‘The Confectioner’s Hall’, a beloved sweet shop for generations of Dubliners. Opening on that very spot in 1842, it only closed its doors in 1984. More on this history of the company can be read here, an excellent article on the Irish Architecture Forum blog by Lisa Cassidy.

One of my favourite street name in Dublin is Lemon Street, which is just off Grafton Street. It was named after Graham Lemon and his family who owned property in the area. (It certainly has a better ring to it than its previous name – Little Grafton Street).

So, what’s your favourite street name in Dublin?

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An tÓglach, Summer 1971 p.10

Spotted this today. The Shakespere was one of the ghost-signs of Dublin our own jaycarax covered in his piece on the literal ‘signs of the times’. Today, of course, it is known as The Hop House.

Our review of The Hop House

“I don’t think I could put my name to any list of good Dublin pubs and leave this one out. While we’ve found some great pubs so far, it can sometimes be the ones you knew already that shine brightest. This one would blind you”

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