26 September-Ballykealy House

Ballykealy House is located near the village of Ballon about 8 Km south of Carlow town, Ireland. It was once the home of the Lecky family. Today it is a hotel known as Ballykealy Manor Hotel. The Lecky family lived at Ballykealy House from 1649 until they sold the house and surrounding lands in 1953.

The land surrounding Ballykealy House, extending to about 150 hectares, was purchased by the Land Commission. Ballykealy House was purchased in the early 1960’s by the Patrician Order for use as a novitiate. The present Tudor-Gothic style house which was built in the 1820’s was designed by Thomas Cobden.

When Colonel Rupert Beauchamp Lecky sold Ballykealy House, he moved to London with his family. Within a few years bankruptcy proceedings were instituted against him. At the time his liabilities exceeded his assets by around £4,000. The bankruptcy proceedings were due for hearing in September 1957.

On the morning of the hearing Colonel Lecky, having said goodbye to his wife and family, got on a train to travel to London. He was never seen again. Efforts to locate him continued for many years. The search covered Britain, Ireland and locations in Europe. He was not found and the file on Colonel Lecky remains open at Scotland Yard.

Colonel Rupert Beauchamp Lecky of Ballykealy House near Carlow disappeared without trace in the year 1957 On This Day.

Flying high by FranksWorldPics on 2015-08-03 20:28:47

26 September-Visual Carlow Ireland

The VISUAL Centre for Contemporary Art and the George Bernard Shaw Theatre is based in Carlow town, Ireland. It is located in the grounds of Carlow College close to the town centre. The multi-disciplinary arts facility came about through collaboration between Carlow local authorities and local theatrical and arts groups over several generations.

George Bernard Shaw inherited properties in Carlow town. He bequeathed some of these to Carlow Urban Council in 1944. He intended that the rent from these properties would form the nucleus of a Civic Improvement Fund. In 1954 the County Manager in Carlow established an ‘Arts Council’ to advise him on the best use of the Shaw funds. This helped establish a link between the council and local arts and theatrical groups. Carlow Arts Festival (Éigse) began in 1979. In the intervening years it has promoted a vibrant and extensive annual programme of events.

By the 1990’s in response to strong local interest the local authorities in Carlow became involved in the establishment of an arts centre in the town. Through the Arts Office in the Council, an annual programme of artistic events and exhibitions called VISUALISE was established. The programme put in place the structures for the establishment of the centre which is now known as the VISUAL.

With an area of over 3,000 square metres VISUAL is a multi-disciplinary arts facility housing a 300 seat performing arts theatre, four principle gallery spaces, restaurant and bar. It has a well-deserved reputation for presenting the best of local, national, and international work in the visual and performing arts. The unique structure was built with local and national funding. VISUAL was designed by British architect Terry Pawson, following an international architectural competition.

The VISUAL Centre for Contemporary Art and The George Bernard Shaw Theatre was officially opened in the year 2009 On This Day.




Visual Carlow

25 September-Sonia O’Sullivan

Sonia O’Sullivan, who is a native of Co Cork, is one of Ireland’s most successful athletes. She represented Ireland at four Olympic Games, winning an Olympic Silver Medal in 2000. O’Sullivan also won European Gold and World Gold Medals. She was Chef De Mission for the Irish team at the 2012 Olympics in London.

Sonia “Fran” O’Sullivan was born in Cobh, Co Cork on November 28th 1969. She was educated at Cobh Vocational School and began her athletic career with Ballymore Running Club in the town of Cobh. In 1988 O’Sullivan was awarded a scholarship to Villanova University in Philadelphia, USA. She graduated from there with a degree in Accounting in 1992.

Prior to winning her Olympic Medal, Sonia O’Sullivan had a long list of successes to her credit. These included:

  • Three World Championship Gold Medals
  • Three European Championship Gold Medals
  • Four World Records

Sonia O’Sullivan won the Silver Medal in the 5,000m at the Olympic Games in Sydney in the year 2000 On This Day.

January 1, 1992 by National Library of Ireland on The Commons on 1992-01-01 13:09:18

Sydney Olympics by HerryLawford on 2000-08-01 00:00:00


25 September-Tony O’Malley

Tony O’Malley was an artist who was a native of Co Kilkenny, Ireland. His father was from Clare Island off the Mayo coast. O’Malley was born in Callan Co Kilkenny in 1913. After completing education he began working with the Munster and Leinster Bank now part of Allied Irish Bank (AIB). Whilst working at the bank he began drawing and painting as a hobby.

In the 1940’s O’Malley contracted TB which gave rise to long periods of hospitalisation. He began painting in earnest while in convalescence. When he returned to bank work, he continued to paint and in 1951 he held the first exhibition of his work.

In 1958 O’Malley, who was by then an entirely self-taught artist, retired from the bank to paint full time. He had visited St Ives in Cornwall, then an important centre for abstract artists, on a number of occasions during the 1950’s. He settled in St Ives in 1960 in the company of many leading artists of the day. The Arts Council of Great Britain provided subsidised studios and accommodation in St Ives for artists allowing them to concentrate on their work. Tony O’Malley was a beneficiary of the scheme. Now O’Malley’s former home and the shop his parents owned in Callan has been transformed by his wife into a residence where artists can work and live.

Whilst living in St Ives, O’Malley met Canadian artist Jane Harris. They married in 1973 and began to live both in the Bahamas and Callan. In 1990 they made Ireland their home and by then O’Malley was one of the major figures in Irish contemporary art. President Mary Robinson conferred on him the title of Saoí of Aosdana in 1993 and in 1994, he was awarded an honorary doctorate by Trinity College, Dublin. He died at the age of 89 on January 20th 2003

Tony O’Malley, who is regarded as one of Ireland’s leading painters, was born in the year 1913 On This Day.

THE HEALING HANDS SCULPTURE [FEATURING AN ETERNAL FLAME]-116175 by infomatique on 2016-05-19 16:38:21

O’Malley’s Visual Journals by topgold on 2005-11-17 12:29:34

St Ives photo

St Ives after dark. Lumix DMC G3. P1030277 to P1030281. by Robert.Pittman on 2013-11-25 18:00:51


25 September-John Ireland Archbishop St Paul Minnesota

John Ireland, who served as Roman Catholic Archbishop of St Paul, Minnesota from 1888 to 1918 was a native of Co Kilkenny Ireland. During his time as Bishop, Ireland promoted both the modernisation and Americanisation of the Catholic Church. Ireland became a leader in both the religious and civic life of St Paul. He established close friendships with US Presidents McKinley and Roosevelt.

John Ireland was born in Burnchurch, Co Kilkenny on September 11th 1838. When he was ten years old his family emigrated to America where they eventually settled in St Paul, Minnesota in 1852. Having studied for the priesthood he was ordained in 1861. Following ordination he served for a time as a chaplain in the army during the American Civil War. Ireland became the first Archbishop of St Paul in 1888.

Archbishop Ireland was a dominant and reforming figure in the American Catholic Church. He opposed racial inequality and promoted the integration of immigrants into the US church and society. Archbishop Ireland organised the settlement of over 4,000 families from deprived areas in Eastern US cities on over 1,500 square km of rural Minnesota. Names such as Avoca, Iona and Clontarf were given to the settlements. He helped establish the Catholic University of America, in Washington, D.C. in 1889. The John Ireland Boulevard in the city of St Paul is named in his honour.

John Ireland, Archbishop of St Paul Minnesota (1888-1918) died in the year 1918 On This Day

A Trip Back to St. Paul, Minnesota in 1964: The Cathedral of Saint Paul by France1978 on 2013-04-13 17:03:48

St Paul photo

Panorama of St Paul

Photo by kodiax2