As another eventful year for Dúchas na Gaillimhe – Galway Civic Trust draws to a close we would like to wish all our friends and associates a very happy Christmas and a peaceful New Year. Throughout 2017, the Trust once again sought to further its mission to ‘conserve, protect and enhance the natural, built and cultural heritage of Galway’ for the benefit of both residents and visitors. We look forward to your ongoing support in 2018 as we seek to continue our good work.
2017 marked 25 years of operations by Dúchas na Gaillimhe – Galway Civic Trust and we started the year with a number of heritage walks with local and visiting group. These included historic walks of Galway with Presentation Primary School, Galway and also with Nebraska University. In February, our Development Officer gave talks to Doughiska, Roscam and Arduan Active Retirement Association and to Engineer’s Ireland West as part of their spring lecture series in GMIT. March saw a focus on our Galway Tribal Diaspora Project with a number of fascinating new stories added to our on-line exhibition: www.galwaytribe.com
Our Community Employment Scheme Tour Guide Pauline shows a group from St. Michael’s Primary School around The Hall of the Red Earl
A group from Coláiste Ghobnait secondary school on Inisheer were just one of the school tours we welcomed to the Fishery Watchtower Museum in April. In May the awards event for our Capturing Galway’s Heritage Competition for Transition Year Students took place in GMIT with Presentation College, Headford being crowned as winners for 2017. May also saw us host Galway’s first Medieval Walk, Talk & Banquet in conjunction with The King’s Head and Claoímh Living History Group. This event raised €1,000 for Galway Simon Community. June and July saw visitor numbers peak at both the Hall of the Red Earl and the Fishery Watchtower Museum while numbers were also significantly up on our Medieval Walking Tour of Galway which runs every Tuesday and Thursday throughout the summer months.
All funds raised from our Mediaeval Walk, Talk and Banquet went to Galway Simon Community
With over 1,800 participants across 30 events, August was as ever, dedicated to National Heritage Week and this year we were once again delighted to host the most extensive programme of any organisation in the country. In September we were pleased to contribute to Culture Night as we hosted an evening of traditional music and historic tours in the Hall of the Red Earl. This month also saw us nominated for a Junior Chamber ‘Friendly Business Award’ in recognition of the warm welcome we provide to thousands of visitors to Galway each year. Our AGM also took place in September where we said farewell to a number of outgoing board members and welcomed new and returning members.
Over 1,800 people participated in our Heritage Week events
In October, our Development Officer, Michael Quinn was honoured to deliver the Donal Taheny Memorial Lecture to the Old Galway Society. Two Board members also took part in a governance workshop hosted by The Wheel which led to us signing up to the Code of Practice for Good Governance of Community, Voluntary and Charitable Organisations in Ireland. Our Galway Tribal Diaspora Project along with a number of other local diaspora initiatives was officially launched by Ciaran Cannon T.D Minister of State with special responsibility for the Diaspora and International Development at an event in Cloonacauneen Castle in November. We were also delighted to welcome a group of young Galway Travellers to both the Hall of the Red Earl and the Fishery Watchtower Museum as part of their training for ‘Takeover Day’ which saw the group assume the running of Galway City Museum for an entire day. Finally, we rounded off the year in style with a celebratory 25th birthday coffee morning at our office on Druid Lane in December. This event saw our showcase the various projects which we have completed over the past quarter of a century and also raised €350 for Galway Hospice into the bargain!
Directors, staff and friends, pictured with the Croi and Cladaig Hooker during our coffee morning to celebrate our 25th birthday!
Medtronic / The Wheel Event
The Trust was pleased to take part in a ‘Charity Impact’ day which was hosted by The Wheel at Medtronic’s Mervue Facility in November. The event gave the Trust, along with 15 other Galway charities, the opportunity to showcase our work to the staff and management of one of Galway’s largest employers.
Mayor of Menlo Visit
We were delighted to welcome Mayor of City of Menlo Park, California, Kirsten Keith and her husband John Woodell to the Hall of the Red Earl while on a recent visit to Galway. The Mayor’s visit was part of a walking tour of historic Galway which was led by Galway City Heritage Officer, Dr Jim Higgins. We also caught up with the Mayor at Menlo, Galway where we presented her with a cheque towards the completion of a replica gateway in her native city which was erected by the towns’ founders Dennis Oliver and Daniel McGlynn, Irish immigrants originally from Menlo.
The Trust once again put together one of the largest Heritage Programmes throughout the entire country hosting over 40 local events in 30 separate location from the 19th – 27th August. We were delighted to partner with friends old and new as we shone a light on the richness of our natural, built and cultural heritage here in Galway. Highlights of the programme included a talk on historic Galway pubs by local historian, Tom Kenny, a family-friendly beach safari held in conjunction with Galway Atlantaquaria, and a series of lunch-time crafting demonstrations held at the Hall of the Red Earl. With over 1,800 attendees at our events over 9 days, the programme was a massive success and we thank both participants and partners for their continued support. Having drawn breath, we are already planning for Heritage Week 2018!
Culture Night, which was held on the 22nd September, has become a firm favourite in Galway’s calendar. The Trust was delighted to contribute to its success again this year as we opened both the Hall of the Red Earl medieval site and the Fisheries Watchtower Museum later than normal to facilitate scores of visitors of all ages who called into us. Our tour-guides were on hand to welcome and inform visitors about the two sites and we were particularly delighted to host a traditional music session in the historic surrounds of the 13th century archaeological remains of the Hall of the Red Earl – Galway’s original town hall.
The Trust was delighted to be nominated for a Junior Chamber ‘Friendly Business Award’ which took place in September. Selected in the category of ‘Community Impact’, the nomination recognises the warm welcome we provide to thousands of visitors to our fair city each year. Well done to Colleran’s Locksmith who were winners in our category and also to our good friend and long-time supporter, Mary Bennett of Treasure Chest who was also a category winner.
The Trust’s Development Officer, Michael Quinn will give a talk on ‘Galway’s Distilling History’ to the Old Galway Society on Thursday 12th October at 8pm in the Victoria Hotel. All are welcome and entrance is €5 to non-members.
We have just finished our scheduled walks of medieval Galway for the summer months. The walks which are free of charge take place each Tuesday and Thursday from May to September see us introduce hundreds of visitors and locals alike to the wonderful medieval sites and history of our town on an annual basis. For any interested parties, we continue to provide pre-booked tours to groups and schools throughout the year.
The Dúchas na Gailliimhe – Galway Civic Trust AGM took place on Thursday 28th September. We say farewell to a number of outgoing board members and welcome new and returning members. The board now comprises: Billy Cameron & Frank Fahy (both Galway City Council representatives); Gerry Hanley; Orlaith Keegan (Trade Union representative); Peter Kenny; Valerie Moriarty; Jack Mulveen; Maurice O’Gorman (Galway Chamber of Commerce Representative); Tom Quinlivan.
Our Galway Tribal Diaspora Project www.galwaytribe.com will be officially launched by Ciaran Cannon, T.D. on Monday 23rd October. We will be in touch with an official invitation to all of our newsletter subscribers in due course.
In conjunction with National Heritage Week, Dúchas Na Gaillimhe - Galway Civic Trust would like to invite you to our 2017 Heritage Festival. We have a varied programme of guided walks, demonstrations, talks and exhibitions which explore and promote the heritage of Galway.
This year we have made a special effort to ensure that all the family have some fun! We have a family tours of Renmore Military Barracks Museum and our Beach Safari will teach us all about the diversity of sea life on the seashore! Or visit the Zoology Museum, at NUI, Galway and meet a variety of reptiles and invertebrates. Come and see us at the Hall of the Red Earl to learn more about traditional crafts with demonstrations in Bobbin/Lace Making and Celtic Jewellery Design.
Try a guided walk of our renowned medieval city or explore our waterways, churches and the Circle of Life Garden on the Prom. And don't forget a visit to the Fishery Watchtower Museum and learn more about the importance of the river and sea to Galway.
So join us for lots of fun events to explore the wonderful heritage that Galway has to offer! All events are free but places are limited. For details of all events please check out our Heritage Week 2017 Events Guide here.
Welcome to our Summer edition of the Dúchas na Gaillimhe - Galway Civic Trust newsletter. As the summer season reaches full swing we look forward to welcoming visitors to Galway on our regular walking tours of historic Galway as well as planning our extensive Heritage Week 2017 programme. We also look back at another successful annual Transition Year competition and a heritage related fundraiser which we organised on behalf of local homeless charity, Galway Simon.
Galway Historic Walks
The Trust's regular medieval walks of Galway are now in full swing for the summer season. This free tour of our city’s medieval highlights in the company of our experienced guides leaves from the Hall of the Red Earl twice weekly. So, if you have any visitors, or would like to brush up on your own history of the City of the Tribes come on down to the Hall any Tuesday or Thursday at 2pm up until the end of September. Our guides also continue to welcome to vast numbers of visitors to the City of the Tribes to the Hall of the Red Earl and the Fisheries Watchtower Museum both of which are also free of charge.
'Capturing Galway's Heritage' Transition Year Competition' 2017 Result
Now in its ninth year, the winners of this year’s Dúchas na Gaillimhe – Galway Civic ‘Capturing Galway’s Heritage’ Transition Year Competition was Clarin College, Athenry. This competition encourages our younger generation to explore their local heritage and this year schools were asked to examine the experiences of past pupils and relatives who now make up Galway’s worldwide diaspora. All entries were displayed in GMIT who also kindly hosted the awards ceremony. All school's finding will now feed into the Galway Tribal Diaspora Project which is being conducted by the Trust (www.galwaytribe.com). The standard was once again high with the winners looking at a number of locals who are now scattered across the globe. Congrats and well done to the Transition Year Students of Clarin College who are pictured below with the ‘Fisheries Watchtower Sculpture Perpetual Award’.
The Trust was delighted to be involved with a recent heritage themed raised which raised over €1,000 for Galway Simon Community. The event involved a walk of Galway’s medieval sites followed by a sumptuous banquet in the historic surrounds of the King’s Head. The initiative was a collaboration between the Trust, Galway Early Music, Cláoimh Living History Group and the King’s Head all of whom gave their services for free in the battle to combat homelessness in our city.
Heritage Week 2017 Priority Booking Offer
Planning for Heritage Week 2017 is now underway and as always Dúchas na Gaillimhe – Galway Civic Trust will be hosting one of the most extensive programmes throughout the country. As in previous years we have teamed up with a number of local groups and organisations to open up some of Galway’s ‘hidden heritage’ gems to the public. Other highlights include a talk by local historian, Tom Kenny on the history of Galway’s iconic public houses, a traditional music and dance session on the streets of Galway and a cycle tour of Galway’s heritage sites. Our programme booklet will shortly be available from our office but in the meantime we are delighted to offer you, as a subscriber to our newsletter, priority booking to any of our events which can be viewed at www.heritageweek.ie You can call us direct at 091-564946 to make your booking.
With our two major visitor attractions, The Hall of the Red Earl and The Fisheries Watchtower Museum at full tilt for the summer season the Trust is seeking to recruit volunteers who might like to give a few hours to welcoming visitors to these iconic Galway sites. Full training will be given and a basic knowledge of Galway’s heritage along with a pleasant disposition is all that is required! Contact Development Officer, Michael Quinn on 091- 564946 for further details.
Dúchas na Gaillimhe - Galway Civic Trust
Committed to protecting and enhancing Galway's natural, built and cultural heritage