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A Father’s Letter

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On the eve of his execution on May 7th 1916, Michael Mallin’s two-year-old son Joseph was brought to see him in Kilmainham Gaol. That night, his father wrote a letter that would change Joseph’s life forever. In it he tells his family that he loves them and asks his little boy to be a priest. […]

Mr. Yeats and the Beastly Coins

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Ten years after the Easter Rising, in 1926, the Free State government decided to create a new coinage for the new state. They invited the most famous poet in the world, W.B.Yeats, to chair the design committee. Behind-the-scenes battles were fought before the new coins became one of the most enduring success stories of the […]

Christmas in the City – Amharc Éireann: Eagrán 237

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In December 1963 Dublin was humming with excitement as crowds gathered in their droves to see the Christmas lights adorn the streets. Henry Street was overflowing with busy shoppers, enticed by the winter wonderland window displays and bargains at the market stalls on Moore Street. Children eagerly waited to meet Santa in his grotto, while […]

Christmas Morning

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Directed by Tiernan MacBride, this short film – nominated for a Palme d’Or in 1978 for Best Short Film – is a visual representation of the Irish folk song Arthur McBride and The Sergeant, played and sung by Irish singer Paul Brady. The lyrics tell the story of Arthur McBride (Paul Bennett) and his cousin […]

Dublin Shops Highlight Christmas – Amharc Éireann: Eagrán 28

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December 1959 and Christmas is coming. The streets of Dublin glistened with the joy of the festive season. Everything you could wish for could be found here. In every shop window there was something to delight and entice, from the latest fashion trends to novelty Christmas candles; Dublin city centre had everything you needed for […]

Christmas Cards Help World’s Refugees – Amharc Éireann: Eagrán 130

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Oscar-winning actor Dame Margaret Rutherford visited Trinity College in December 1961 to help promote the launch of charity christmas cards. Enterprising students were selling cards depicting famous paintings reproduced with the kind permission of the National Gallery of Ireland.  The proceeds would go towards the Irish Père Pire Refugee Fund. Père Dominique Pire, born in […]

Puss in Boots Panto – Amharc Éireann: Eagrán 83

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The legendary Panto Puss in Boots comes to Our Lady’s Hall, Mourne Road, Drimnagh. This amateur production has the whole community busily involved. Locals from Crumlin and Drimnagh offer their spare time and skills to help production, from acting and costume design to set design, electrics and carpentry. This is a play made by the […]

Toys, Buy Now for Christmas – Amharc Éireann: Eagrán 201

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This April 1963 edition of the newsreel shows a fun-filled toy fair in Dublin where visitors are allowed a sneak preview of Christmas stock. From tricycles to fashion dolls and remote control cars, there was something for every child at this show. Many of the toys were from the British Tri-ang range. In the 1960s, […]

Moving Crib Tells Christmas Story – Amharc Éireann: Eagrán 187

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A popular Dublin Christmas tradition was a visit to The Moving Crib in Parnell Square. A nativity scene was created using over 100 mechanical handcrafted figures set against a delicately hand-painted backdrop. The Moving Crib (based at St Martin Apostolate, 30 Parnell Square) opened in 1956. Visitors can enjoy a colourful array of bible scenes […]

Dublin Christmas Lights – Amharc Éireann: Eagrán 185

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December 1962 and traffic in Dublin is at a standstill as crowds gather on O’Connell Bridge awaiting Santa’s arrival. Rudolph et al must have been resting for the big night as Santa chose a rather unorthodox method of transport – water skiing his way up the River Liffey to mark the beginning of the festivities. […]

Christmas Day Swim – Amharc Éireann: Eagrán 83

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This newsreel records the annual Dublin Swimming Club Christmas swim, which took place at the Clontarf Baths on a freezing December morning in 1961. The crowd of wrapped-up onlookers cheered on the athletes as they braved the cold waters. The winner Neil Kennedy who was awarded the trophy by Máire Potter. The Clontarf Swimming Club […]

A Wet Christmas in Howth – Amharc Éireann: Eagrán 83

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What better way to spend Christmas Day in 1961 than water skiing in the freezing cold Irish Sea? Mr and Mrs Carr brave the cold waters at Balscadden Bay as onlookers, in awe of this chilly Christmas tradition, cheer them on. Howth and Martello Tower are just visible in the distance. This traditional Christmas swim […]