Monday, 13 October 2014

Scouting in Listowel and the farrier at work

Prawn Sandwich anyone?

Some clever salesperson found a novel way of selling Roy Keane's book. Photo: Twitter


Listowel Scouts in Donegal in 1946

bathing their feet in a mountain lake
 Swimming in Lough Swilly

 At the village shop in Glenveigh. Some of the boys have bought bags of sweets.

Michael's caption on this one says "A rest with the famous black box" 
 Any ideas?


An extract from Fr. Anthony Gaughan's Listowel and its Vicinity

Scouting in Listowel by Fr. Anthony Gaughan

4th Kerry/1st Listowel
During World War II and thereafter troops throughout the country were no less active than those in the archdiocese of Dublin. They instilled self-discipline and self-reliance and provided training in outdoor and other skills. The extent to which troops enriched the lives of boys both with regard to recreation and to useful activity can be gathered from a pen-picture of any one of more than a hundred troops.  The success of troops largely depended on the imagination, talent and commitment of their leaders. Some were quite colourful. Few were more so than Michael Kennelly, of the 4th Kerry and later 1st Listowel troop.

      Kennelly served behind the counter in the "Cloth Hall", a family drapery business. A founder member of the Listowel Drama Group, he co-authored a number of plays. The 4th Kerry was established in 1931 but within a few years was wound up when its leader resigned. Kennelly reorganised it, registered it in 1943 and led it until he retired from scouting in 1953. The troop never had more than thirty members. At the weekly meeting there was drilling and preparation for tests for merit badges: for cycling, first-aid, horse riding, interpreting and woodwork. An army instructor occasionally took members for gymnastics and exercises with Indian clubs. For some years members were instructed in boxing and took part in a competition with members of other troops at Ballybunion, Killarney and Tralee. Sunday hikes were organised to scenic spots on the River Feale.

    Kennelly was adventurous when it came to planning the troop's annual camp. At a time when others did not venture much beyond county boundaries he took his troop further afield year after year. In 1944 he took his scouts for a week's stay in the An √≥ige hostel in Mountjoy Square. There were visits to the roof of Irish Independent house, the top of Nelson's Pillar, the Botanic Gardens, the Zoo and a football match in Croke Park. In the hostel the troop had a sing-song with seven hikers from the Shankill in Belfast.


The Forge

All I know is a door into the dark.
Outside, old axles and iron hoops rusting;
Inside, the hammered anvil’s short-pitched ring,
The unpredictable fantail of sparks
Or hiss when a new shoe toughens in water.

These lines are from The Forge by Seamus Heaney

The forge as we knew it is gone but the trade of the blacksmith is carried on in the noble art of the farrier.

I was at home in Kanturk last week when the farrier came to shoe the horses. This man is a third generation farrier and an expert at his trade.

There is no furnace or anvil now. The shoes come ready forged but he still wears the leather apron and still has to mould the shoes to fit the horse.

This particular farrier is also a world champion handballer.


Roly Chute

Roly and his dog posed for the camera on William Street yesterday.

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