Recalling "Clonakilty 400" a decade on....

10 years on.......

On 5th May 2013, ten years ago, Clonakilty celebrated its 400th birthday, (the granting of a charter by King James First which formally established the town and town council). 

President and Mrs. Higgins came to town and a great Sunday was enjoyed by hundreds of locals who turned out for the occasion. 

An hour-long DVD, recording the highlights of the historic day, was subsequently produced and sold locally. 

To remember the day ten years ago, all are invited to a social gathering at O' Donovan’s Hotel at 8.30pm this Friday evening 5th May, where the DVD will be shown on a big screen. 

Fáilte roimh chách. 


Documentary film screening

AN  MUILEANN: A history of Milling in Cork 


Documentary produced and directed by

Anne-Marie Green


Thursday May 4th 2023 at


in Clonakilty GAA Pavilion

Ireland currently has the largest collection of pre-10th century water-mill sites in the world. In fact, the world's oldest recorded tidal mill, built in AD 617 is situated on Mahee Island in Strangford Lough. Legend has it that river milling dates back even earlier to AD 250 along the river Nith near Tara, the seat of the High Kings of Ireland.

The use of water for power continues as a thread through the centuries. In many cases the only trace is a place name – think of the number of Milltowns scattered across the country. But not all are lost to ruin. Some have been renovated and restored providing us a glimpse of a rich and largely unknown past.

An Muileann looks at three such mills in West Cork – in Schull, near Glandore and Castleview Mill near Clonakilty. Thanks to the dedication of their owners these structures have been preserved and saved from ruin. The documentary explores the history of these buildings and the dedication of the people who want to save them for future generations.

After the screening there will be a Q and A with Dr. Colin Rynne, an industrial archaeologist who has written widely about Irish industrial history from medieval times to the 20th century.

Clonakilty Journals on sale

Clonakilty Historical & Archaeological Journals are available from Coolim Books HERE

(Please note the Biblio website takes a little bit of time to load)

Dúchas AGM 2023

The AGM of Dúchas Clonakilty Heritage was held recently at O' Donovan's Hotel, Clonakilty.
Tim Feen, Cathaoirleach, welcomed everyone and reflected on a busy year for the organisation when normality returned after the pandemic period and in-person lectures, commemorative events and field trips were held almost monthly. Among the highlights were participation in the Michael Collins Centenary Commemoration Festival events in August and the production of another YouTube video – this time on some of the history of Timoleague for Heritage Week.
Progress was made by a sub-group in tidying up Kilgarriffe Old Cemetery and cutting back vegetation, which was threatening parts of it and the gravestones therein, and local Cork County Council officials were thanked for their support.
Tim also updated members on Templebrien Stone Circle negotiations with statutory bodies.
Fachtna McCarthy, (recording secretary), read out his comprehensive minutes of AGM 2021 which were adopted and Cionnaith Ó Súilleabháin, PRO, thanked all the local print, broadcast and internet media organs and community newsletters and their editors, journalists and photographers for publicising Dúchas events before and after, during the last year. The Facebook page, with over 2,500 followers, is becoming more popular as a communication vehicle with the public.
Fachtna McCarthy, (this time wearing his Treasurers hat!), presented the financial report, which was satisfactory, but he cautioned the need for prudence also going forward as many costs are rising. A discussion arose and it was agreed that the organisation should facilitate people to become members online and this will be pursued.
Marian O’ Leary, Lectures and Fieldtrip Co-ordinator, thanked Clonakilty GAA Club Pavilion Manager Padraig O Reilly for facilitating the monthly lectures and it is proving a popular venue.
A discussion arose about holding future talks as “hybrid” or recorded events to facilitate members unable to make lectures.
Clíodhna O'Leary, editor and chair of the journal editorial board reported that there were some copies of Volumes 2 and 3 available still and a discussion was held about promoting these. As she indicated she was stepping back from the position she has held since 2015, she was thanked for her huge input over the years. Clíodhna also reported on a number of issues from the “Preservation Committee”.
Tomás Tuipéar reported that just a few copies of the impressive "History of Clonakilty Town Council" book remain unsold in one of the local bookshops. He and his fellow authors Michael O' Mahony and Dr. Matthew Potter were complimented on such a comprehensive publication which was compiled over a period of several years.
Diarmuid Kingston chaired the election of officers for the coming year which resulted as follows: Cathaoirleach: Tim Feen; Leas Cathaoirleach: Michael O’ Mahony; Rúnaí: Marian O’ Leary; Joint Asst. Secretaries: Barbara McGuirk and Rachael Cronin; Recording Secretary: Fachtna McCarthy; PRO: Cionnaith Ó Súilleabháin; Asst. PRO: Marian O’ Leary; Treasurers: Fachtna McCarthy and Michael O’ Sullivan. Committee members: Don Hill and Seán Brennan.
Under AOB, a number of items were raised, including a welcome acknowledgement of the Clonakilty Men's Shed members who in conjunction with curator Michael O’ Connell, open up the West Cork Regional Museum, (Clonakilty Museum), from 10 to 12 noon every Monday.
Also discussed was a series of events in June to mark the 225th anniversary of the 1798 Battle of the Big Cross this June.

Recording of Dúchas Tribute to Dick Barrett and Sean Hales

The link to the recording of our Sean Hales and Dick Barrett commemorative event held on November 18:2022 is HERE

Historic coastal village of Timoleague: Duchas Film documentary

For Heritage Week 2022, Dúchas Clonakilty Heritage has once again decided to do a film documentary.  As part of our celebrations, we will be visiting the historic coastal village of Timoleague which is situated at the mouth of the Airgideen river estuary on the cusp of Courtmacsherry Bay.  It is a picturesque place steeped in historical fact, along with myth and legend, and to take us back over the centuries our guides are Diarmuid Kingston and Michael O’Mahony.

We hope that the viewer will enjoy our visit to this historical coastal village and its hinterland with its spectacular scenery and rich folklore.  It is indeed a place of historical importance with its ancient abbeys and wonderful artistically endowed churches.  It is only by a visit that their beauty and uniqueness can be fully appreciated.

Click here to watch: