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The 15th annual prize giving of the Francis Ledwidge Poetry Award for 2013 took place in the Glen of Aherlow in Kilmainham on Tuesday 10th December last.

The 1st prize winner was Mairead Donnellan from Bailieborough Co. Cavan for her poem Castlewellan Postbox.

2nd prize when to Catherine Anne Cullen for her poem Shoe-box Coffin and 3rd prize to Mary Guckian for her poem Corsets.

The lounge at Donoghues was packed for the reading of the poems and for the music and songs which followed. Liam O'Meara, Chairman of the Inchicore Ledwidge Society presented the prizes and Michael O'Flanagan (secterary) performed his Exorcism for a Province” accompanying himself on the keyboard.

The evening was complete when Peter Byrne, a local singer, sang “The Charladies Ball.”

The closing date for entries to next year's competition will be 5th November 2014

Francis Ledwidge Poetry Award 2013

Free Film Show

 If you missed the recent performance of Liam O'Meara's play about Francis Ledwidge, or wanted to see it again, your chance was on Monday October 28th, 2013. That was when the play, which had been filmed, was shown in the Patriot's Inn, Kilmainham, at 8 pm.

The showing film was free and open to all, and was very well attended.

The Patriots Inn


22 October 2013

"Bluebells swinging, shadows wildly blown" 


Ledwidge Portrait(above) Artist Robert Ballagh speaking before the unveiling of his new portrait of poet Francis Ledwidge which took place in Kilmainham Gaol on Wednesday, August 28th.

Robert Ballagh is one of Ireland's foremost artists, admired and collected by art aficionados everywhere.

He is exhibited in major galleries all over the world but new works, are, unfortunately, all too rare.

A member of the Ireland Institute, Robert represented Ireland in the Paris Biennale as far back as 1969.

In addition, he has designed many Irish stamps, as well as stage sets for such productions as Riverdance, etc.

This was a great opportunity to see this work and meet the artist in person.  

On Wednesday 28 August, in the wonderful surroundings of Kilmainham Gaol, a new portrait of poet Francis Ledwidge was unveiled.

This magnificent portrait - a triptych by renowned artist Robert Ballagh - incorporates elements of this tragic poet's all-too-short life in a striking and magnificent composition.

The evening was chaired by Senior Information Officer in the Gaol, Micheal O Doibhilín, who welcomed everyone on behalf of the OPW and Kilmainham Gaol in Irish and in English before speaking of Robert Ballagh's many artistic, creative and political achievements.

The artist then spoke of his inspiration for the painting, the elements within it, and the subject himself before handing the floor to Ledwidge's biographer Liam O'Meara who, as chairman of the Inchicore Ledwidge Society, had commissioned this portrait.

Liam gave a brief outline of the poet's short life, his involvement with the Inchicore area (he was stationed in the Richmond Barracks) and is tragic death

The painting was then unveiled by Michael O'Flanagan, Secretary of the ILS, and Micheal O Doibhilín to a round of appreciative applause by the large audience. Michael expressed his gratitude on behalf of the ILS for the facilities provided by Kilmainham Gaol and especially for the staff who facilitated on the night.

Photos on the night were taken by Liz Gillis, author of  Revolution in Dublin - a photographic history, and assistance was given by fellow guide Patrick Mannix, author of "The Belligerent Prelate" - a life of Archbishop Mannix and organiser of the Archbishop Mannix Weekend and Conference in Charleville, Co. Cork.. 

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