Collins celebrated at unique event

Margot Gearty, a niece of Kitty Kiernan's, and Laurette Kiernan pictured at the event in the Greville Arms on Friday last. Photo: Shelley Corcoran
Organised by the Collins 22 society with Cllr Micheal Carrigy, last Friday night saw Granard celebrate Michael Collins and Kitty Kiernan.

Organised by the Collins 22 society with Cllr Micheal Carrigy, last Friday night saw Granard celebrate Michael Collins and Kitty Kiernan.

Young and old gathered to celebrate the two historical figures, and their links with Granard.

Speaking to the Leader about the event, which was held on Friday, October 18 in the Greville Arms Hotel, Granard, Cllr Carrigy was happy to report that it was a”packed house” for the event. “Anyone that was there enjoyed it” he says, adding that it was an extremely informative and very entertaining evening for all in attendance.

Guest speakers on the night included Margot Gearty, a niece of Kitty Kiernan’s, who gave her own family’s perspective on events. Former Minister for Justice, and grandson of Eoin McNeill, Michael McDowell also visited Granard to speak at the event, sharing with the crowd his own opinions and views of Collins. Gerry O’Connell, Honorary Secretary of the Collins 22 society also spoke on the night, along with reknowned lecturer and author Michael Doran, ensuring a well-rounded and informative view of Irish history and Michael Collins’ link with Longford, particularly Granard.

An exhibition provided by Longford County Library added to the evening, with Margot Gearty adding to the collection with some of her own pieces.

Delighted with the success of the historical evening, Cllr Carrigy is hopeful that events such as this will continue, expanding on the links between Granard and Michael Collins. He also stressed the importance of teaching school children about their national history.

Cllr Carrigy wishes to thank everybody who was involved in the evening. He extends his thanks in particular to Longford County Library, Mary Carleton Reynolds and staff for their help in organising the event. Thanks also go to the guest speakers for travelling to Granard to take part in the evening. “It was a unique, intimate occasion” Cllr Carrigy said, explaining that it was “one of those one-off nights”.

The entry fee to the event, only €10, will allow for flowers to be kept on the grave of Michael Collins at Glasnevin Cemetery, Dublin.