Keogh Square lay adjacent to Goldenbridge

Monday, June 24, 2013 – by Dublin People
Tanaiste hears history of Richmond Barracks
• Michael O’Flanaghan gives the Tanaiste a run down of the history of the barracks.

TANAISTE Eamon Gilmore was treated to a guided tour of Richmond Barracks during a visit to Kilmainham last week.

Mr Gilmore was invited to the area by Deputy Michael Conaghan (Lab) who is a member of the All-Party Oireachtas Consultation Group on Commemorations and of the Inchicore Kilmainham Heritage Group.

“It was my pleasure to invite the leader of the Labour Party and Tánaiste to view the surviving buildings from the former Richmond Barracks,” Deputy Conaghan said. “It was also an opportunity to hear from the Inchicore Kilmainham Heritage Group and other interested parties on the historic importance of the site and proposals for restoring and adapting the buildings as a modern heritage location.

“In the short term, we are preparing to put in place an exhibition for the 2016 centenary period that would recall and celebrate the stirring events that took place in Richmond Barracks in the aftermath of the Easter rebellion.”

The 200-year long history of the site is a fascinating one. It represents the British colonial era, the struggle for independence and the history of working class Dublin families.

Construction of Richmond Barracks began in 1810 and the first regiments arrived in 1814. Over its 108 years as a British military barracks, almost every regiment would have spent time there.

It is also where many Irishmen departed from to fight in World War I.

“The remaining buildings of Richmond Barracks here have very specific connections to the Easter Rising and its immediate aftermath,” Deputy Conaghan added. “After the surrender, it was designated by the British as the holding centre for over 3,000 suspected rebels, until they were released or sent to prison camps in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

“The signatories of the Proclamation and other leaders were also interned, court-martialed and sentenced to death in the barracks before they were sent to Kilmainham Gaol for execution.

“It is said that further executions were stayed as a result of the visit of the British Prime Minister Herbert Asquith to these buildings in May 1916.

“The rooms where many of these key events unfolded are still intact.”

In 1922 the barracks were handed over to the Free State Army under Commander Keogh.

Two years later they were given to Dublin Corporation and converted into housing tenements known as Keogh Square. By 1969 Keogh Square had become very dilapidated and was demolished. The St Michael’s Estate flat complex was constructed on the site. The three buildings of the original Richmond Barracks which still stand were retained for educational purposes and in 1929 became a primary school.

It has since closed down as a school but the building still stands, unoccupied.

“Sadly the rich heritage of this site has never been fully acknowledged, remembered or presented,” Deputy Conaghan stated. “With the centenary of the 1916 Rising almost upon us it is imperative that we prepare these rooms to commemorate and celebrate those nationally important events that were centred on these rooms.

“We envisage a permanent exhibition housed here. This would be an adjunct to what is portrayed at Kilmainham Gaol museum, with visitors guided here accordingly.

“This proposal has the potential to transform the area by further enhancing the district’s cultural tourism potential. The community will be involved to the greatest degree possible in all aspects of the project both physical and heritage related. The benefits for the community which this project has the potential to deliver include education, training and employment opportunities for local people and the creation of a living repository for the history and memory of the area.”

Phil Lynott courted a Goldenbridge girl

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“Phil Lynott, the Dublin rock star who is 28 years dead today, pictured in Crumlin as a young boy.”

Retweeted by Marie-T. O’Loughlin

(I heard  a few years ago from a reliable source that a Goldenbridge teenager from my era once courted Phil Lynott.)   


5:41 PM – 4 Jan 14 · Details

“Love this girl”

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Love this girl! RT “@PhotosOfDublin: A communion girl in Dublin. Can anyone shed light on her identity?”“5:25 PM – 3 Jan 14 · Details

Hahaha. Me too! Spot on! Talk about a picture painting a thousand words. Well, this one does, for sure.

Gosh, I remember the prayer-book and the laced gloves too. By the looks of it, I’d gather there wasn’t a lot of praying going on in the Holy Communion girls’ life. Miley Cyrus move over.🙂

She was hardly from Goldenbridge, as children were not allowed to have long fringes , or long hair for that matter at all.

Athbhliain faoi mhaise dhaoibh = Happy New Year 2014

P1200788Athbhliain faoi mhaise dhaoibh = Happy New Year 2014 /Ah-vleen fwee vosh-ah gheev/ to all survivors of Goldenbridge. I hope that those who spent Xmas alone were able to get by without too much difficulty. People tend to run away from survivors at this time of year, because they can’t fathom their pain, so the rejection of the past also becomes the rejection of the present. As inmates of Goldenbridge in the past we depended on the goodness of kind people to open up their homes to us during Xmas time, but now that we are at the other end of the age spectrum, and deemed part of the society, that sort of thing isn’t going to happen, unless there are survivors who have strong personalities, whom people can warm to, thus allowing the latter to open up their homes. I’ve been very lucky to have been invited to Switzerland, but I know there are countless counterparts who would not have been given that opportunity. Survivors, like elephants, never forget the kindness that is shown to them by kind-hearted people at this very vulnerable time of year. It can be painful reading endless Tweets by people referring survivors on their own to the Samaritans. Very sad indictment on their lives indeed.

Dollymount Strand

BcwmqLrIUAAGAfqI saw this photo of Dollymount Strand on Twitter. It reminded me of one of two beaches I had occasionally frequented as a child. The other one presently escapes me. I  had  been staying with the Boyne host family, as I was on licence from Goldenbridge. So, it would not have been terribly far away.

I remember there was a very pungent smell everywhere due to the seaweed. There were a lot of banks and rockeries to roam about. I think I may have slipped off with other children, or may have been accompanied by Irene and Valerie, who were the teenage daughters of Mrs. Boyne.

I distinctly remember finding out from somebody in later years, when I returned to Boyne St., that a boy by the surname of Earl had been drowned at one of the sea-sides. I don’t know which one it was at all.  Very sad. The Earls were very boisterous happy-go-lucky boys. I think there were a lot of Earl boys in the family that lived on a top verandah approximately three verandah’s away from the Boyne’s. I vaguely remember the mother being a very tall woman.

Photo: H/t Dublin Airport ‏@DublinAirport

Sunset this evening from Dollymount Strand. Via @phcostel #lovedublin


Two Xmas blackbirds


I thought this photo that was taken today in trees yonder the orange berry trees  is very apt for this time of year. There are two blackbirds enjoying the peaceful surroundings. They appear fiercely independent. I think there could be a nest nearby, I’m not sure. There was a lot of house-extension going on just underneath the trees, earlier on in the year, so probably that could have deterred the birds setting up a nest in this tree. The area is a trifle open than it was before the renovations. Some trees nearby were cut down to make way for natural light to the new addition. Shame really.

Donnybrook denuded berry branches


This photo was taken this afternoon. The ferocious storm experienced since Xmas day denuded the branches of the overflowing bunches of luscious orange berries. The birds are now having to resort to eating them off the grass ground. Ironically, it was hard getting photos of the birds when the berries were in full bloom, as they flitted off so quickly. However, the blackbird, as you can see, was happily resting on the bare branches after having a big feed down below. The birds are very cautious about feeding on low ground, but at this time of year they obviously have to take risks.

See: link below for same branch on Xmas day.

Bheir Mí Ó (Eriskay Love Lilt)

I learned this Scottish/Gaelic song in Goldenbridge. I was in Sr. Fabian’s choir.  She came from Donegal, so she would have been very much in touch with Scottish music when she was growing up. Sr. F. was a fluent Irish speaker. Whenever nuns from Carysfort College came into the classroom, she always reverted to speaking in Irish. One immediately got the impression that the pair were in discussion about one, whenever their eyes happened to gaze upon one at the time of their As Gaeilge tête-à-tête.

That sort of thing also frequently happened to me in Switzerland, when the head of the household spoke in French at the dining table when she discovered that I was picking up on the Swiss-German language.

The song is very haunting. Nana Mouskouri is very versatile in many languages. I think musical people, per se, find it very easy to sing in foreign languages.