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Old Galway

The Seven Wonders of Galway

I was asked a question some time ago that stopped me in my tracks, “What, for you, would be the seven wonders of Galway”? It made me think long and hard and I decided to draw up a list.

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The Galway Carol Singers

 

The Galway Carol Singers were formed in the late 1930’s by members of the Junior Conference of the St. Vincent de Paul.

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Independent Radio Galway

 

In 1978, RTE were on strike for some time which meant the repair shop in O’Connor TV had nothing to do, so John O’Sullivan and friends built a 30-watt transmitter and this prompted Tom O’Connor, John O’Sullivan and Eamonn Geary to get together and set up a pirate radio station called Independent Radio Galway.

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Diving at Blackrock

 

Up until the mid-nineteenth centuryImages and Links, there was a cluster of thatched cottages at Blackrock. On “The Night of the Big Wind”, these were literally blown away by the ferocity of the storm and the tide and most of the occupants had to move inland. They were mostly fishermen and there had always been a tradition of fishing in the area.

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Galway Simon, The Early Years

 

The Simon Community takes its name from Simon of Cyrene who helped Jesus carry the cross. It was founded in London in 1963 by Anton Wallich-Clifford and a branch was set up in Dublin in 1969.

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The Turf Market at Raven Terrace

 

Turf was an important and indigenous fuel and so turf markets were an important factor in Galway life (long before anyone ever thought of carbon emissions) especially at this time of year as one prepared to head into winter. Farmers from Rahoon or Barna or surrounding areas would bring their neatly stacked cartloads of turf into town and sometimes go from door to door trying to sell their product.

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Balls Bridge, 1685

 

This drawing is of a detail from a “Prospect of Galway” drawn by Thomas Phillips in 1685. It shows the southern end of the middle suburb with Balls Bridge on the left, and the bit of an arch you can see on the far right was part part of the West Bridge.

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Tim O'Leary's Shop, Lower Salthill

 

Tim O’Leary was a native of Roscommon who came to Galway to work as a buyer for Moons. He eventually bought this corner building opposite the Industrial School and changed it into a thriving business. It was a high-class grocery which sold fruit, minerals and all kinds of confectionery.

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