Historian and writer Terry Reilly invites you to join him as he strolls into old Ballina, discussing people and events that made the town what it is today. Having written several books on the town, he has finally acceded to requests to do a visual history tour of the Salmon Capital of Ireland, and, of course, home of President Mary Robinson.
We cross bridges and rivers, visit churches and abbeys and graveyards, hear of Famine days and starvation, and the untold story of the famine orphan girls sent to Australia. We meet Michael Davitt and Parnell and local Land League hero Arthur Muffeny, and the Knox Gores’ of Belleek estate.
The French Invasion and hangings in 1798, and the bloody massacre of over one thousand men, women and children by Richard Bingham’s army in 1586 also feature. Hear, too, of Ballina folk who made good: composer William Vincent Wallace, the rock star of the 1800s; Edward Whelan, a Father of the Canadian Confederation; and General William Joyce Sewell who fought at Gettysburg and received the Medal of Honor. Discover, too, Capt. Matthew Webb’s – the first to swim the English channel – ties. And not forgetting tenor Jack Feeney, and his love for a Ballina girl.
We visit, too, the grave of Fr Joseph Foy who died in 1918. Though defrocked, his grave is the most visited and venerated in the town. And speaking of graves, did you know that William Burke, the infamous body snatcher, walked these streets!!
From ancient Ardnaree to the megalithic Dolmen of the Four Maols, from Leigue and St Patrick to the Quay and its shipwrecks; to the Ridge Pool and its silvery salmon, and from the old Military Barracks to the Courthouse where Lord Lucan (of the Charge of the Light Brigade but better remembered as ‘The Exterminator’) addressed a meeting; and onto the Railway Station and its sad farewells as encapsulated in Rosary Crusader Fr Patrick Peyton’s story.
All this and much more: beautiful vistas of Ballina, its majestic river and surrounding countryside. And great stories,too. A really wonderful gift for anyone with Ballina connections!
Suitable for Worldwide viewing.