Double celebration for go-ahead Historical Society


There will be cause for double celebration in Ballinvreena on Sunday evening when the local Historical Society sees two projects come to fruition.

Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Jimmy Deenihan T.D. will officially open the Cush Excavation Interpretive Display at Ballinvreena Community Centre at 6pm and will launch Volume 6 of a local historical journal.

Both projects are the work of a hard core of dedicated members of Kilfinane and Coshlea Historical Society. Sunday evening’s event comes at the end of what has been a sad and challenging twelve months for the Society during which two of its foremost members, Roger O’Donnell and Michael J. Hennessy were called to their eternal reward.

The interpretive display will be dedicated to the memory of Roger O’Donnell who had a vast knowledge and a profound and abiding interest in the subject. The excavations at Cush on the western slopes of Slievereagh were carried out by Sean P O’Riordain in the mid-1930s when a complex of ancient fields and enclosures were revealed dating back it is believed to pre 400AD

The site also contains six ring forts and a large enclosure. Seventy rotary querns, glass beads, a Bronze Age urn and iron slag were among many items discovered during excavation. “Without Roger’s drive and enthusiasm, the interpretive display would not be there or be possible” Kilfinane and Coshlea Historical Society chairperson Patsy McGrath told the Vale Star.

Minister Deenihan will also launch the Kilfinane-Coshlea Historical Journal, Volume 6 which again is a compilation of many stories of local heritage. The volume contains fulsome tributes to Roger O’Donnell and Michael J. Hennessy, an article recalling the Famine of Black 47. The history of Kilfinane 1798-1923 is treated in the volume while a story of great interest to Kilfinane is a look at a list of the shops, pubs and businesses in the area in the 1950s and 60s. Among other interesting articles are a look back at the halcyon days of Kilfinane Autumn Festival, the folklore of Ballinlyna, a nostalgic look at the dancehalls in Ballyhoura Country in the 1950s and 60s, Maurice Brazzill of Martinstown and his phenomenal love of the Olympics, the Ballinvana Stakers, Fr. John Ryan and many more.

The launch takes place at 6pm on Sunday evening at Ballinvreena Community Centre after which the journal will go on sale for €10. While volume 1 is completely sold out, there are limited numbers of volumes 2, 3, 4 and 5 still available. Everybody welcome on Sunday evening.