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Heritage Week with the Slieveardagh Mining Interest Group

August 14, 2022
August 16, 2022
Heritage Week with the Slieveardagh Mining Interest Group
Michael Barron Recollections Heritage Week 2022

The coal-mining industry was the main employer in the Slieveardagh Hills in the mid-20th Century. The men who worked for the mines reared families, contributed to the community and also had a social life. 

Heritage Week Online Event

This year for Heritage Week online we are fortunate to be able to share a recollection of social events and entertainment in Ballingarry Village from the 1920s to the 1970s.

Over the years the extremely observant and creative man Michael Barron photographed the local area and then put pen to paper to record the changes that took place over a period of 50 years. This is the story of the coal mining village of Ballingarry, but it could anywhere in Ireland in the 20th century.

Starting on Monday, each day over six days we will post a short video featuring Michael's writings in this blog.

Billy Barron will read his father Michael's recollections

Ex-miner Billy Barron, who worked in Gurteen as a ‘fitter’ or electrician reads ‘The Social Scene’. It was written by his father Michael Barron, in the mid-70s or early 80s, it charts the social life in the village of Ballingarry from the 1920s to the 1970s.

Paddy O'Connell shared his collection of photographs and newspaper cuttings

Paddy O'Connell worked in the Garage at Gurteen Mine, he was a close friend of Michael Barron and has great interest in the area, the history of vehicles, day to day items and local heritage. He has been an invaluable help in many of our projects, and this time he has shared images from his albums and scrap books.

The Albums and Scrap books made available for the project by Paddy O'Connell

The return to In-person events

On Saturday 20th August 2022 The Old School Community Centre and Mining Museum E41 HE40 will be open for visitors from 3pm to 5pm.

The museum artefacts, maps and models will be on view. Photographs and images from Ballingarry will also be on exhibition. Some of the photographs from this project and others that have recently been included have the people named, so more information on the images is now available.

If you have any photographs from the area, of people or places please bring them along to add them to the collection. Any photographs brought along will be photographed on the day so the originals can be safely taken home again.

We hope you will enjoy the series of videos, that they will either bring back memories or help you discover more about the past in this area. And all are welcome to visit The Old School and see the work that was put into the new displays during Covid Lockdowns.

Check out the Heritage Week events page for more information about these projects and lots more that is going on countrywide.

Post Comments

Margaret O Brien
2022-08-15 10:09:22

A huge thank you to Katy Goodhue for her expertise in creating and presenting these invaluable blogs of the social scene in Ballingarry from the '20's to the '70's . And also to Paddy O Connell and the Barron family for sharing their photos and snippets.

Marie Cahill
2022-08-14 19:19:10

Great to see this well done to all involved. Mgt O Brien Billy Barron and the great paddy ó Connell 👏👏👏looking forward to this event

Old School Community Centre.
2022-08-14 19:15:10

Congratulations on such an interesting and long awaited social history of the parish. Thank you for all your efforts and research. Looking forward to seeing the daily videos.

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