Heritage Week 2021 at Offaly Libraries

Heritage Week 2021 Programme

Heritage Week 2021 will run from Saturday, August 14th to Sunday, August 22nd   

Offaly Libraries have scheduled a jam-packed line up of online events. The theme this year is “Open the door to Heritage”. Check out our fantastic events - there’s something for everyone.


Event Details:

Ballyboy Comhaltas                                                                                    August 14th 12 noon

You’re in for a special treat! Ballyboy, Co. Offaly is well known for its community of traditional Irish musicians. For Heritage Week at Offaly Libraries, Ballyboy Comhaltas have created a wonderful video featuring the amazing music, culture and historic sites of this beautiful place.


Sacred Heart School                                                                                   August 15th 12 noon

Áine, a second year student of the Sacred Heart School, Tullamore presents It all started with a spoon, a wonderful story of an impressive woman and the barriers she broke throughout her life. Mary Ellen Joyce, a granddaughter of Irish immigrants was an important person who marched to her own beat.


Opening the door to Offaly’s Heritage, Przemysław Skura                 August 15th 6pm

To celebrate Heritage Week 2021, Offaly Libraries are delighted to host a digital photography exhibition, Opening the door to Offaly’s Heritage by Przemysław Skura. Check it out in Edenderry, Tullamore and Birr Libraries for the month of August. His beautiful photographs capture the amazing built and natural environment in the Faithful County and his gallery will go live on Facebook on August 15th at 6pm.

W ramach obchodów Tygodnia Dziedzictwa Kulturowego 2021 biblioteki w Offaly mają zaszczyt zaprezentować wystawę fotografii cyfrowej "Otwierając drzwi do dziedzictwa Offaly" autorstwa Przemysława Skury. Wystawę będzie można obejrzeć w sierpniu w bibliotekach w Edenderry, Tullamore i Birr. Ta niesamowita fotografia ukazuje niezwykłe naturalne i architektoniczne piękno rejonu nazywanego "Faithfull Offaly". Galeria zdjęć Przemysława będzie dostępna na Facebooku 15go sierpnia o godz.18.

Blundell Castle, Dr Ciaran Reilly                                                                 August 16th 12 noon

Dr Ciaran Reilly’s presentation will examine the history of Blundell Castle and its setting in what was formerly known as Townparks.

Dating to the early 15th century, Blundell Castle has been a central feature in the landscape of Edenderry, located on the hill overlooking the modern town. The scene of battles and sieges, Blundell Castle has stood a ruin since the 1960s.


The Offaly Hurling Story, Kevin Corrigan                                              August 17th 12 noon

How did Offaly go from being an also-ran to being one of the country's top hurling counties and home to some of the greatest artists of the game? In an incredible 20 year span from 1980 to 2000, Offaly won four All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship titles, three All-Ireland minors and a host of Leinster championships. Kevin Corrigan's talk charts the story of Offaly hurling, how they rose from the ashes and where they are now.


Cemeteries & Soldiers, Stephen Callaghan                                              August 18th 12 noon

Stephen Callaghan explores the lives of various soldiers buried in Birr graveyards for Heritage Week 2021. His video gives biographical details of various military characters, while explaining the battles they fought and the medals they were awarded.

A Treasure Story with Simone Schuemmelfeder                             August 19th 6pm                                                                                             

Looking for treasure? Storyteller Simone Schuemmelfeder and Vinny the Vulture present a story about hidden treasure as well as horrible cures and witchcraft from County Offaly. Storytelling and puppetry fun for Heritage Week!

From bricks to bikes: traces of history on the Grand Canal in Offaly; Heritage Week blog by Caitriona Devery                           August 20th 12 noon    

Caitriona Devery is our special guest blogger for Heritage Week 2021. She recounts the history and recent transformation of the Grand Canal, how it links to the story of brickmaking in Pollagh, Co. Offaly and where we can find these yellow 'canal' bricks. In her blog she explains how paying attention to our built and natural environment gives us clues and insights into past lives, and how once you start looking, you'll see these yellow bricks everywhere!


The Fall of the Leaf - revisited by Michael Fortune                                     August 21st 12 noon                                                                                                          

The Fall of the Leaf is the name of a folklore collection recorded and produced by Michael between January and April 2010 with clients from Riada House Day Care [Tullamore], Clara Day Care [Clara], Ofalia Day Care [Edenderry], Birr Community Nursing Unit [Birr] and The Irish Wheelchair Association [Ballinagar]. For Heritage Week this year, Michael revisits the collection for the first time in 11 years and listens to the stories with the perspective of time. This video features his response to the stories and the people themselves. This is the first time he has ever done this for any of his folklore collections and it’s a great insight that we would never have seen before. If you love Irish folklore in its truest form, this film is a must.


Clara’s Singing Tradition with the Rabbette Family                              August 22nd 12 noon                                                                                                                  

Clara is renowned for its singing tradition. Offaly Libraries are delighted to host the Rabbette family from Clara for Heritage Week 2021 celebrations. Siblings, Joe, Noreen and Claire will sing four local songs so that whether you’re in Offaly or the four corners of the world, you’ll feel connected to the Faithful County.

Books on Offaly Heritage

Heritage Week 2021 Birr display

Check out all the great books available in our branches celebrating Offaly Heritage. Above is a selection from Birr Library. Come visit, we are looking forward to seeing you.