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Posts Tagged ‘Liberty Hall’

“For many years past, Liberty Hall has been a thorn in the side of the Dublin Police and the Irish Government. It was the centre of social anarchy, the brain of every riot and disturbance.” The Irish Times. (pg 191, Easter 1916, Townshend)

Neither Kenny nor Gilmore.

Reading through Charles Townshend’s excellent book “Easter 1916,” I picked out the above quote about Liberty Hall and thought to myself, how times really have changed. While DFallon’s recent post on Hawkin’s House challenged the myth, some still call it Dublin’s ugliest building, while others hold it in reverence. Although in this climate, the plans to see it torn down are unlikely, SIPTU have been talking about redeveloping as recently as last August. Personally I’d hate to see it removed, not because of it’s architectural significance or visually appealing exterior (or lack thereof,) but because of the historical relevance of the site and the significant difference it would make to Dublin’s skyline if it was replaced.

"And the banner read..." Originally posted here by DFallon

With the next government looking likely to be made up of a collaboration between Labour and Fine Gael, the current occupants of Liberty Hall, (SIPTU, who to be honest have been about as Anarchic as Tory Boy,) look fully set to have one foot in Leinster House. Not discounting the fact that due to Social Partnership, they have been bedfellows with the Government for over a decade, for the next four years or so, the party they have official ties with are to share power with a party whose roots are seeped in the fascist tradition. Dark days indeed.

"Vote Labour," Reclaim the Streets, 2002

I dread to think that in the next couple of weeks, a new banner will appear on the side of Liberty Hall, calling on the people of Ireland to vote Labour. Lets just hope it isn’t accompanied with an image of Joan “Joe Higgins eats babies” Burton. “The brain of every riot and disturbance” indeed.

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Three old images of Dublin that I’ve come across lately online.

Though the pub has now been replaced by a Chinese restaurant, you can still see the lion above the door. c. 1940s/50s?


A view towards Rathmines from Portobello. Early 19th century?

 

 

A rare photograph from the construction of Liberty Hall. c.1962

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View from the roof.

It should no doubt interest a few of our readers to hear that the roof of Liberty Hall is open to Joe Public tomorrow. The view is excellent, and completely destroys the myth that the Guinness Storehouse offers the best view of the city. It’s open to the public from 10am to 1pm, and there is disabled access. I got up myself a few years ago when Siptu opened the roof to the public to mark May Day, and thought the view was well worth the trip.

It’s all thanks to the Open House Dublin Festival, celebrating the architecture of the city.

Here are two videos on YouTube from the roof, taken by YouTuber thebettyfordclinic

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With RTÉ currently running a weekly programme geared towards finding Ireland’s greatest ever citizen, its nice to see SIPTU getting in on the act in calling for James Connolly to be voted number one. And who wouldn’t, considering the remaining top five contains none less than, as Donal recently called them, the “Freestate Prick” Michael Collins and the “Northside Dick” Bono. Lucky enough we are I suppose that Stephen Gately and Adi Roche missed the cut (no offense to either of course…)

Do what the ominous big building tells you to

I can say with a good deal of confidence that the other two lads on here would be with me in calling readers to vote Connolly, and never mind the biters who try and say “sure he’s not Irish…” Take half an hour out of your time and watch TG4’s newest “Seachtar na Casca” programme on the man, then try and listen to someone tell you that James Connolly is not Irish…

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My Grandfather, Patrick Devereux, and his sister, Mollyanne, were members of the Irish Citizens Army, and they fought during Easter Week. My Grandfather fought in the Imperial Hotel in O’Connell Streeet (now Clery’s Store), and Mollyanne fought in the College of Surgeons, Stephen’s Green. Christy Moore invited me to sing this song at the Centenary Concert of the SIPTU Union in Liberty Hall December 2009. – Brendan Devereux

I’ve just stumbled upon this catchy ballad on youtube. It’s only been on youtube for a week. No doubt it will quickly spread amongst left-wing and trade unuon circles online. Brenan Devereux has released two albums so far; Copper Alley (1996) and Songs from a Yellow Chair (2005) both of which you can purchase online from CDBaby. For more information on Devereux, you can visit his website here.

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Arthur Scargill at Dunnes Stores, Henry Street with striking workers (Irish Times April 20th 1985)

Arthur Scargill, the (in)famous trade union leader of the National Union of Miners, is to address the upcoming May Day rally in Dublin. There is something about seeing Scargill speak that makes you feel almost entitled to a badge yourself, like you’ve ticked something off some imaginary list. He is, afterall, renowned for his ability in the field.

When I saw him last year, at the Unite union hall (which you can view here) I understood where the reputation comes from. Often humourous, sometimes biting and always engaging, he is in a field of his own when microphones are involved (And the same can be said of megaphones)

While aspects of his own politics remain open for debate among the left, and some debate the tactics and even the ideology of the strike Scargill led, it doesn’t change the fact he remains a speaker most worthy of your ears and time. He is a character of some magnitude.

DCTU May Day Rally:
2 pm , Saturday 1st May
Garden of Remembrance,
Parnell Square, Dublin.

March to Liberty Hall

The red-top smear the staff wouldn't print.

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Dublin Fire Brigade Piper Bernard Mulhall at Liberty Hall

“O branch that withered without age!
Would we could see you where you’re missed
Step airy on the Abbey stage
Play there ‘The Revolutionist’
Or fill with laughter pit and stalls
With Bartley Fallon’s croak and cry
What led you to those castle walls?
We mourn you Sean Connolly”

Lady Gregory.

Another plaque in place, another important part of working class Dublin history marked.

The home of the Connolly siblings, at 58/59 Sean McDermott Street Lower, now boasts a new plaque from the North Inner City Folklore Project. Captain Sean Connolly and his siblings Katie, Joseph, George, Eddie and Mattie all fought with the Irish Citizen Army during the Easter rebellion. The plaque also pays tribute to young Molly O’ Reilly, who raised the green flag over Liberty Hall in 1916.

Among the crowd were historians, trade unionists, activists,relatives of members of the City Hall Garrison and members of the local community. The Dublin Fire Brigade were represented too, due to Joseph and George Connolly serving within its ranks. Joseph was a firefighter at the time of the insurrection. The Fire Brigade can therefore boast something very few others in the city can, in the form of a real connection to the Easter Rising.

Conor McCabe at Dublin Opinion has some more images worth a look over at their blog.

Speeches and audio

James Connolly Heron speaks at the site of the plaque. His speech covers not alone Sean Connolly and his siblings, but the campaign to save 16 Moore Street.

Las Fallon, of the Dublin Fire Brigade Museum, speaks of Joseph and George Connolly.

Dublin Fire Brigade piper plays outside 58/59 Sean McDermott Street Lower.

Wind, coughing, and all the other things nature/people can whip up when you’re trying to record something, but still….

Images

Dublin Fire Brigade members at Liberty Hall

Fittingly, a relative of James Connolly presents a relative of Molly O' Reilly with the green flag to raise.

The raising of the flag

The flag is raised.

Dublin Fire Brigade colour party

Citizen Army uniforms today, spot on right down to the red hand!

Dublin Brigade- Irish Republican Army

Las Fallon, Dublin Fire Brigade, speaks of George and Joseph Connolly.

Banner marking the role of women in the revolutionary years

A poem is read prior to the unveiling

A small selection of the fantastic collection of images from the period on display afterwards

The Starry Plough blows in the wind with the new plaque behind it.

Dublin Fire Brigade trade unionists pay respect. Firefighter Russ McCobb laid this on behalf of Impact workers.

Another snap of the brief talk on the Connolly connection to the Dublin Fire Brigade

The plaque itself

After the ceremony, we decided to visit Glasnevin Cemetery. There, we thought it only fitting to undertake a search for a particular grave with the day that was in it.

The grave was that of Captain Sean Connolly, Irish Citizen Army.

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