New Head of Fundraising Appointed

Limerick Civic Trust has appointed Erin Perkins as Head of Fundraising.  In the newly created role, Erin will be responsible for the voluntary organisations fundraising efforts at a local and international level as well as building strategies to increase membership and promote two museums currently in development.

Originally from Portland, Oregon, USA, Erin has lived in Ireland for the past 12 years. She has a BA in Cultural & Historical Studies from Marylhurst University in Oregon.

Commenting on the appointment, David O’Brien, Limerick Civic Trust, said, “The creation of this new role is in response to our ambition to deliver on a number of key conservation, restoration and heritage projects in Limerick. It’s a strategically important role for the organisation as we seek to garner the right support from industry, investors, the tourism sector and the community at large so we can maximise on the opportunities and benefits for everyone.”

Limerick Civic Trust is currently turning No. 2 Pery Square into a museum following a decision by Limerick City & County Council to award the lease to the organisation. The Trust is also converting a deconsecrated Church in the heart of Limerick’s medieval quarter into a museum. When opened to the public next year, St Munchin’s Church will tell the story of Limerick’s unique military history since the siege of 1691.

Erin comes from a marketing background and has worked with businesses across a variety of industries in building marketing and brand strategies that drive businesses to their next stage of success.

Trust to Transform Culture House into a Museum

Limerick Civic Trust has warmly welcomed the decision by Limerick City & County Council to award the lease of Culture House at No. 2 Pery Square to the organisation. Councillors approved the proposal for Limerick Civic Trust to transform the building into a visitor attraction at this month’s metropolitan district meeting.

Speaking on behalf of the board of Limerick Civic Trust, David O’Brien, CEO, said “We are confident that No. 2 Pery Square will become a top visitor destination on its own right while also becoming a window into the larger Midwest tourism experience.”

The plan is to turn No. 2 Pery Square into a People’s Museum of Limerick.

“In preparing our proposal, Limerick Civic Trust consulted with the Waterford Experiences and The Little Museum of Dublin on their offering, experience and operation. We also drew on the collective experience of our Collections Committee, which boasts a former CEO of Shannon Heritage and the HR director of Shannon Development. We believe that a Limerick visitor experience based on stories and items of local interest will be a great addition to the local tourism offering,” he continued.

While the core remit is to open No. 2 Pery Square as a museum, the building will also be used as a venue for permanent and regular exhibitions and one-off events.

Limerick Civic Trust is hoping the new People’s Museum will open early summer this year. However, they are waiting for a licence giving formal permission to access the building and gardens so they can carry out some essential maintenance works in advance of the opening.

In the meantime, the Trust is working on securing working capital, hiring staff and planning the museum’s offering, branding and marketing.

No. 2 Pery Square is one of a terrace of six Georgian Style houses built by the Pery Square Tontine Company in 1838 to the design of the famous Limerick based architect James Pain. For buildings of similar size, this terrace is by far the best example of Georgian architecture in Limerick and possibly in Ireland.

“No. 2 Pery Square is an architectural gem and deserves to be opened to the public. The building played a key role in the year of Limerick City of Culture.  There is an opportunity to build on this and reflect on the efforts made over the last number of years,” concluded Thomas Wallace O’Donnell Chairman of Limerick Civic Trust.

ENDS

 

’45 for Valour’ Now Exhibiting at Bishop’s Palace

’45 for Valour’ exhibition which was hosted by the Limerick Museum during November has now transferred to Bishop’s Palace, the headquarters of Limerick Civic Trust.

Trish Taylor Thompson’s seminal work ’45 for Valour’ honours the forty-five soldiers of Irish descent who were awarded the Victoria Cross for their bravery and heroism during the Great War. A graduate of LSAD, Trish Taylor Thompson’s practice is influenced by the symbolism of botanicals. Through the motif of the common poppy, she explores the importance of remembering. Themes of commemoration and memorial are at the heart of this important work that has stimulated dialogue in addressing the controversy around the wearing of the poppy in Ireland. The forty-five paintings, oil on linen, are a memorial to the soldiers who risked their lives fighting with extraordinary valour and selflessness during wartime. ’45 for Valour’ marks the anniversary of the beginning and the end of World War I.

 

There is also a Limerick connection. Although the majority of the forty-five soldiers were awarded their medals posthumously, two of the Victoria Cross recipients include Limerick born stretcher-bearer Private Michael James O’Rourke who survived the war and died on 6th December 1957 at the age of sixty-nine. Private Henry Edward Kenny was born to Limerick parents in England and died on 6th May 1979 at the age of ninety.

 

The American humanitarian and educator Moina Michael first introduced the idea of the poppy as a symbol of remembrance by selling silk poppies as a means of raising funds for Veterans of War in the United States following their homecoming from WW1. In 1921, her efforts resulted in the poppy being adopted as a symbol of remembrance for war veterans by the American Legion Auxiliary, and by Earl Haig‘s British Legion Appeal Fund (later the Royal British Legion) later that year.

 

For further information about the artist visit www.trishtaylorthompson.com

Newly Discovered Papers Shed Light on Limerick during Tudor Times

Limerick Civic Trust has presented a cache of previously unseen historical papers relating to Limerick to The Glucksman Library at the University of Limerick on behalf of the Pery Family.

The recently discovered papers provide rich insight into the social, political and economical landscape of Limerick City and County from the 1500’s to 1800’s.

The papers were discovered by Sylvia Countess of Limerick in Sussex recently. They had been put aside by her father-in-law in 1962 after he had presented other papers of historical importance to the National Library.

While much of the papers document the life and times of the Pery family which has links with Limerick going back to the early 17th century, they also provide context and evidence to many of the military actions during that time. Two volumes of handwritten correspondence between Edmund Sexten, who was Mayor of Limerick in 1535, and the authorities in Dublin and London provide a wealth of information about the activities of prominent families like the Sextens, Thomonds, O’Briens and Fitzgeralds. A forbear of the Pery’s, Edmund Sexten became the representative of the Tudor monarch and a major local beneficiary of the dissolution of the monasteries in 1538.

The newly discovered material includes:

  • Transcripts made by Edmond Sexten the younger (1594-1636) of correspondence by his grandfather who was Mayor of Limerick in 1535
  • Historical notices of the Sexten family and the city of Limerick from 1600’s
  • Abstracts and copies of records relating to the Sexten, Casey and Stackpoole families from late 1600’s
  • Book concerning County Limerick circa 1638
  • Edmund Pery’s Account and Commonplace book from 1671-1729
  • Tenement Valuation of the Estate of the Earl of Limerick in Counties Limerick, Cork and Clare in 1884

 

The Account and Commonplace book of Colonel Edmund Pery from 1671 and 1681 provides more amusing insights into the daily concerns of that time. It includes a lengthy section on how to look after your horse and recipes and tips on how to get curly hair, get rid of unwanted hair, make cucumbers last the winter and keep wine fresh.

The Glucksman Library at University of Limerick will now archive and digitize the papers so that they are available to the public.

On presenting the papers to the Glucksman Library, Edmund Pery, the Earl or Limerick, said, “We felt it was important that these papers are made available, at no cost, to anyone who has an interest in them and hope they support the research and work of historians and students. The Glucksman Library is the most obvious place to look after them given they are 100% about the city and county of Limerick. I would like to thank the Limerick Civic Trust for their encouragement and facilitation in bringing them back to where they belong.”

Gobnait O’Riordan, Director, Glucksman Library, said, “The Glucksman Library is delighted to receive these early manuscript records of the Pery family in Ireland from the Earl of Limerick and his family. It is our intention to catalogue and digitise the material. It will then be made available to all researchers in the UL Digital Library in an open access environment. The University of Limerick is grateful to the Pery family and to the Limerick Civic Trust for bringing these manuscripts to Limerick”

Limerick Civic Trust has a long-standing relationship with the Glucksman Library and previously presented its Oral History Archive to the Library in 2015.

David O’Brien, CEO, Limerick Civic Trust, said “As part of our mandate to create a better understanding of our heritage,we carry out a lot of research on unpublished material. These papers are fascinating and provide another layer to Limerick’s rich and colourful past.  We’re thrilled that they are going to the Glucksman Library to be protected, preserved and made accessible to everyone.”

 

The highlights of the collection are:

Manuscript 1

The manuscript comprises primarily transcripts made by Edmond Sexten the younger (1594-1636) of letters and petitions (mostly in English, with some items in part or fully in Latin), which his grandfather Edmond Sexten the elder (1486-1555) had collected in order to defend himself against allegations that ‘my seruice to the kinge majestie is deemed … not to be such as did deserue the bountifull remuneration of his heighnes unto me’ and to prove that ‘my seruice was freely doone without receauinge wages or hire of the king majestie as others dothe’.  (As a background note, Edmond Sexten the elder held the office of Mayor of Limerick in 1535 and was the first mayor of native Irish extraction

Manuscript 3

Abstracts & Copys of Records, Relative to the Sexten, Casey, & Stackpole Familys.’  The manuscript comprises abstracts and copies of seventeen documents relating to the Sexten family; eight relating to the Casey family; and two to the Stackpole family. The earliest reference is to the 16th century

Manuscript 4

Account and commonplace book of 172 pages, bound in coarse leather, kept and compiled by Colonel Edmund Pery (d. 1721) between 1671 and 1681.  The first part of the book contains brief memoranda of financial transactions, mainly monies lent to and borrowed from various individuals. In addition to accounts, the book contains ‘A Collection of Several things fit to be knowne’.  These include notes on weights and measures; a list of foreign coins and their value in pounds, shillings and pence; various conversion tables; and a list of the countries of the known world and their acreage.  There are several pages of explanations of terms of scientific nature, particularly relating to geography, topography, astronomy, physics, and mathematics.

Manuscript 7

Hardcover tenement valuation book with index of the estate of the Earl of Limerick for counties Limerick, Cork and Clare, dated 8 August 1884.  The right hand pages have been numbered consecutively from 1 to 147, while the left-hand pages bear no pagination.   The entries have been arranged first by county and then by ward or townland, as follows.  For County Limerick: Abbey Ward; Castle Ward; Custom House Ward; Dock Ward; Market Ward; Shannon Ward; Glentworth Ward; Irishtown Ward; South Suburb Ward; and Knockainy.  For County Clare: Kilkishen; Cloontra; Cloghera; and Quin.  For County Cork: Kilmacleine; Ballyclogh; Mallow; Blackrock Ward; Caherduggan; and Bawncross.

 

ENDS

Attorney General Guest Speaker at Christmas Business Lunch

The Attorney General, Seamus Woulfe, will be the guest speaker at our hugely popular festive business lunch.

This lunch always provides a great setting to entertain clients and network. Places are limited, so please book before it’s too late.

Date: Friday 7th December
Venue: No.1 Pery Square Hotel, Limerick
Time: 12.30 – 14.30
Tickets: €60

Get your tickets now online or by calling 061 313399

About the Speaker

Seamus Woulfe S.C., Attorney General, was awarded a BA (Mod) (Legal Science) from Trinity College Dublin in 1984. He then obtained an LLM Degree from Dalhousie University in Canada in 1986. In 1987, he was awarded the Barrister-at-Law degree from the Honorable Society of King’s Inns, Dublin and began practising at the Bar in October 1987. He was a part-time Lecturer in Law at Trinity College Dublin from 1987 to 1992, and was called to the Inner Bar in March 2005. His practice was of a general nature, mainly in the area of civil, public and commercial law. He also acted as Legal Assessor for regulatory bodies such as the Medical Council, the Nursing and Midwifery Board, the Pharmaceutical Society and the Teaching Council of Ireland, among others. He continued practise as a Senior Counsel from 2005 until his appointment as Attorney General on 14 June 2017.

 

Book Tickets Online

Paving Stone to Honour Limerick WW1 Hero

A special paving stone will be laid in Limerick to commemorate Michael James O’Rourke, a Limerick man who received a Victoria Cross for his efforts in World War 1.  Limerick Civic Trust presented the VC Paver to the Mayor [today] at a special reception in St Munchin’s Church, King’s Island just a few days in advance of the centenary of Armistice Day.

Private Michael James O’Rourke, who in his early adult life moved to British Columbia, Canada, was awarded the Victoria Cross and Military Medal for extreme acts of valour whilst serving with the Columbian Regiment, Canadian Infantry in WW1.

A quote from his VC Citation states:

“During the period 15/17 August 1917 at Hill 70 near Lens, France, Private O’Rourke, who was a stretcher bearer, worked unceasingly for three days and nights bringing in the wounded, dressing their wounds and bringing them food and water. During the whole of this period the area in which he worked was swept by heavy machine-gun and rifle fire and on several occasions, he was knocked down and partially buried by enemy shells. His courage and devotion carrying out his rescue work in spite of exhaustion and incessant heavy fire inspired all ranks and undoubtedly saved many lives.”

Unlike many holders of the VC, Michael survived the war and settled in Vancouver British Columbia.

Over the last four years, the specially-commissioned stones have been laid at the birth places of Victoria Cross recipients. Every Irish-born soldier who won a Victoria Cross in the First World War is to have a paving stone erected in their honour. Michael was the only recipient from Limerick.

The VC Paver was officially received into the City by The Mayor of Limerick City and Council, Cllr James Collins, followed by a Dedication Ceremony and Act of Remembrance.  The official reception, hosted by Limerick Civic Trust, was attended by members of the 12th Battalion from Sarsfield Barracks, the Limerick branch of the Royal British Legion (RBL) and representatives from Limerick City and County Council.

David O’Brien, Limerick Civic Trust, said, “I would like to acknowledge the trojan efforts of Brian Duffy, Chairman of the RBL for ensuring the delivery of the VC Paver. Michael O’Rourke was an extraordinary man who displayed incredible courage and bravery in a war that has affected all our lives today.  The sacrifice he made deserves to be honoured and it is only fitting to have a VC Paver installed in the hometown of his birth and upbringing so he can be remembered.

The Mayor of Limerick, James Collins, said, “It is an honour to pay tribute to the bravery and valour of Michael O’Rourke and at the same time recognise how the war impacted him afterwards. It is important that we recognise our history in Limerick. Sometimes, we’re so busy looking forward, we forget to look back at how we got here. We forget those who have gone before us, the sacrifices they’ve made and their bravery.  I would like to congratulate the Royal British Legion for securing the paver. It is an honour he richly deserves.”

The location of where the VC Paver will be laid has yet to be decided.

Photographs of the reception can be found here

More details about Michael James O’Rourke can be found here

Urban Design for Liveable Cities – Professor Bishop

Renowned Urban Designer Professor Bishop to Share Lessons and Insights with Limerick

 

30 October 2018: Urban Design expert Professor Peter Bishop will travel from London to talk about the concept of liveable cities, planning and thoughtful place-making at the penultimate lecture in the Limerick Civic Trust’s Lecture Series.

Peter is a Professor of Urban Design at The Bartlett School of Architecture, University College London and a Director at Allies and Morrison Architects, will deliver his talk “The City as a Mirage, designing for impermanence in an era of change and flux” on Thursday 1 November at St Munchin’s Church, King’s Island, Limerick.

For 25 years he was a planning director at four different Central London Boroughs, and has worked on major projects at large and complex sites in the UK, including the Canary Wharf and King’s Cross.

Organised in conjunction with UL’s Kemmy Business School and the support of LIT and Limerick Council, the five-part series of public lectures will examine a wide variety of topical issues like the impact of Brexit, immigration, military interventions, Irish water, urban planning, Russia and lots more.

Other speakers in the series included; Web Summit founder Paddy Cosgrave, Emma Kennedy, Kennedy Analysis and Colonel Colm Doyle. Conor O’Clery, journalist and writer, completes the line-up. He will share his unique perspective on Russia and Putin’s influence at the last lecture on 15 November.

All speakers are known for their ability to invigorate a good debate and discussion and are expected to share their thoughts, insights and views on subjects relating to the central theme of ‘Peripherality and Centrality – The Centre Cannot Hold!’.

Speaking about the theme for the lecture series, David O’Brien, CEO Limerick Civic Trust, said, “This is the same theme we used last year but as 2018 draws to a close and dividing opinions about Brexit and Trumpism persist, alongside other global issues like migration, climate change and securing basic human rights for millions, it appears more relevant now than ever. These challenges and issues are having a direct impact on our local economy, environment, society and culture. So as a local economy, how do we become a stronger hub and mitigate against the impact of external forces?  And as a society, how do we adapt and change or ensure the decisions we make are for the betterment of our society now and in the future?”

“Over the past few decades, there seems to be a worldwide trend towards the division of public opinions about several issues such as political views, immigration, equality, global warming. The rise in extreme opinions in society is evident.  Our lecture series seeks to provide a platform for moderate speakers to inform and share their insights on their areas of expertise and to hopefully provide a middle ground where new opinions can take form and existing ones can be either strengthened or weakened,” he continued.

The lectures will run on Thursday evenings from 11 October to 15 November in St. Munchin’s Church. Lectures start at 8pm and admission is €10 or concessions €8 per lecture. Tickets are available online at www.eventbrite.ie. Tickets are also available from The Limerick Civic Trust offices in the Bishop’s Palace, Church Street, 061 313399 or on the door on each of the nights.

Proceeds from the series will be used by the Limerick Civic Trust for the conversion of St. Munchin’s Church into a military museum.

Colonel Colm Doyle to talk War and Peace at Lecture Series

On October 25, Colonel Colm Doyle will deliver his address entitled ‘Responsibility to Protect: Sovereignty via Intervention’ at the third lecture in our Lecture Series taking place in St Munchin’s Church, King’s Island.

Get tickets now

Colonel Colm Doyle retired from the Defence Forces in 2007 after 42 years service. During his career he served in a wide variety of appointments both at home and abroad. His appointments included Director of Public Relations for the Defence Forces, Commandant of The United Nations Training School Ireland and Commandant of the Military College. He is a former Commanding Officer of the 12thInfantry Battalion, Limerick.

He has extensive experience of overseas service. These included tours of duty with the United Nations in Cyprus, Lebanon, The Middle East and New York. He commanded the 82nd Irish Battalion in Lebanon in 1997, during which he hosted the visit of Irish President Mary McAleese.

He is a former head of the European Union Monitoring Mission for Bosnia in 1991 and returned there as Personal Representative of the Chairman of the International Peace Conference, Peter Carrington during the lead up to war in 1992. He was directly involved in negotiating cease-fires in the city of Sarajevo and in particular, securing the hostage release of President Izetbegovic.

Colonel Doyle was selected by the United Nations to serve as Chief of Staff of the Military Division in the Department of Peacekeeping Operations, New York from 2004 to 2006. He was responsible for the day to day operations of 17 United Nations Missions across the world.

He has assisted the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia in The Hague since 1995, testifying as a prosecution witness at the trials of Slobodan Milosevic in 2003, General Pavle Strugar in 2004, Radovan Karadzic in 2010 and General Ratko Mladic in 2012.

Colonel Doyle holds a Masters Degree in International Studies from the University of Limerick. He has appeared on national TV and radio as a military commentator on the conflicts in The Balkans, The Arab Spring, North Korea, Gaza, Chad, Syria and Islamic State. He is periodically a panellist on The Marian Finucane Show commenting on international issues and has been a guest lecturer at third level institutions. In 2009 he was invited to present a paper at the Royal Irish Academy’s International Conference on ‘A responsibility to Protect’, the dilemma of state sovereignty over military intervention. He is currently Chairman of the JFK Memorial School Board of Management in Limerick City.

He has written a memoir of his time in Bosnia under the title “Witness to War Crimes: The memoirs of a peacekeeper in Bosnia”. It is published by Pen & Sword in the UK and in Ireland by IAP/Merrion Press.

 

Lecture starts at 8pm and admission is €10 or concessions €8 per lecture.

Get tickets online via eventbrite

Tickets are also available from The Limerick Civic Trust offices in the Bishop’s Palace, Church Street, 061 313399 or on the door on each of the nights.

Proceeds from the series will be used by the Limerick Civic Trust for the restoration of St. Munchin’s Church into a military museum.

 

Shannon Pipeline Plan to be Scrutinised at Next Lecture

Emma Kennedy, Kennedy Analysis, will travel from Zurich to speak about Irish Water and the Shannon to Dublin Pipeline project at the Limerick Civic Trust’s third Annual Lecture Series on Thursday 18 October at St Munchin’s Church, King’s Island, Limerick. She will discuss Ireland’s “decrepit” water pipes and the potential impact of Irish Water’s plans for Parteen Basin and Birdhill.

Get your tickets now

Emma Kennedy is the founder of Kennedy Analysis, whose work in relation to Ireland’s water supply and leakage levels has become well publicised.

She appeared before the Joint Committee on Housing, Planning and Local Government in April relation to the proposed Shannon pipeline and also on Prime Time where she highlighted “misleading” statements made by Irish Water to justify the Shannon pipeline and its lack of a plan to prevent water outages in Dublin.

The Shannon Pipeline Project – which aims to pipe water from the River Shannon to a reservoir in south Co. Dublin – will involve the abstraction of water from the lower River Shannon at Parteen Basin in Co. Tipperary, with water treatment nearby at Birdhill.

The project has been subject to much criticism and opposition, particularly amongst landowners and people concerned with the fisheries.

Organised in conjunction with UL’s Kemmy Business School and the support of LIT and Limerick Council, the five-part series of public lectures will examine a wide variety of topical issues like the impact of Brexit, immigration, military interventions, Irish water, urban planning, Russia and lots more.

Other speakers in the series include; Colonel Colm Doyle who will deliver his address on 25 October entitled ‘Responsibility to Protect: Sovereignty via Intervention’.  Professor Peter Bishop, University College London and Allies & Morrison Architects, will talk about urban design and planning. Conor O’Clery, journalist and writer, completes the line-up. He will share his unique perspective on Russia and Putin’s influence.

All speakers are known for their ability to invigorate a good debate and discussion and are expected to share their thoughts, insights and views on subjects relating to the central theme of ‘Peripherality and Centrality – The Centre Cannot Hold!’.

Speaking about the theme for the lecture series, David O’Brien, CEO Limerick Civic Trust, said, “This is the same theme we used last year but as 2018 draws to a close and dividing opinions about Brexit and Trumpism persist, alongside other global issues like migration, climate change and securing basic human rights for millions, it appears more relevant now than ever. These challenges and issues are having a direct impact on our local economy, environment, society and culture. So as a local economy, how do we become a stronger hub and mitigate against the impact of external forces?  And as a society, how do we adapt and change or ensure the decisions we make are for the betterment of our society now and in the future?”

“Over the past few decades, there seems to be a worldwide trend towards the division of public opinions about several issues such as political views, immigration, equality, global warming. The rise in extreme opinions in society is evident.  Our lecture series seeks to provide a platform for moderate speakers to inform and share their insights on their areas of expertise and to hopefully provide a middle ground where new opinions can take form and existing ones can be either strengthened or weakened,” he continued.

The lectures will run on Thursday evenings from 11 October to 15 November in St. Munchin’s Church. Lectures start at 8pm and admission is €10 or concessions €8 per lecture. Tickets are available online at  eventbrite  Tickets are also available from The Limerick Civic Trust offices in the Bishop’s Palace, Church Street, 061 313399 or on the door on each of the nights.

Proceeds from the series will be used by the Limerick Civic Trust for the conversion of St. Munchin’s Church into a military museum.

ENDS

 

About the Speaker:

Emma Kennedy is the founder of Kennedy Analysis, whose work in relation to Ireland’s water supply and leakage levels has become well publicised.  Emma was formerly a corporate lawyer at Clifford Chance in London, one of London’s biggest law firms, and a financial analyst at a major global bank. Her background is in carrying out forensic analysis of companies and projects. She has recently been seen and heard on the TV and radio in relation to Irish Water’s controversial proposal to pump water from the River Shannon to Dublin.  The analysis work for the Shannon Project has been produced pro bono, in the public interest.