29 May 2022

PICTURES | Ireland's largest outdoor lantern installation lights up Longford’s Connolly Barracks

A fire performance at Connolly Barracks on Saturday night attracted a large crowd
Picture: Ugnius Brazdziunas

Connolly Barracks was lit up last weekend as the Light Brigade lantern installation opened up to the public. The weekend was a huge success, with over 1,000 people attending the free event.

On Saturday night, Cathaoirleach of Longford County Council - Peggy Nolan launched the show, there was fire-drawing, a pyrotechnic display and music commissioned for the event by local musicians Cronin.

The stunning lantern sculpture project was the result of many months of collaboration between lead artist Tom Meskell and over eighty people from Longford, including Killoe Men's Shed, Longford YouthReach, Ballymahon Vocational School, Ballymahon Mercy, Moyne Community College and Templemichael College,

St Christopher's School and Longford Women's Link had workshops with Tom during 2021 and really enjoyed learning the skills and continue to use them on other projects. They helped create the illuminated herd of life-size horses and eighty "leaf lanterns".

The Light Brigade was the brainchild of Shane Crossan and funded by The Arts Council through the County Council and Backstage Theatre.

The audience were awestruck by the installation, in particular the children were fascinated.

The team involved for the weekend were Tommy Casby, Brendan Magan, Raquel Montero Calero and Lisa Brady.

They had to withstand the varying weather conditions along with Shane and Tom but really enjoyed the experience.

A special word of thanks goes to Tena O'Leary Keown and Liam Killane for helping out with stewarding the event.

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