PASSAGE FROM CATHEDRAL TO CASTLE:
“The Dean of St. Mary’s Cathedral is stated to have described as ‘nonsense’ a report in our Wednesday issue concerning the finding in St. Mary’s Cathedral of a concealed aperture that may have led to a subterranean passage. Our reporter writes, ‘It is possible that the Dean himself whose connection with the Cathedral is comparatively short, is talking nonsense. The Sexton at the Cathedral for 35 years, Mr. John Sparling stated, ‘He had often heard of the possible existence of the subterranean passages and that the next discovery of an aperture is one of the pillars of the Cathedral may prove that this conjecture to be well-founded.’
Mr. Alma Fitt, who has been connected with the Cathedral for 60 years, and whose late father, Charles H. Fitt, was Warden ANS Trustee for long years, told me today, that it was generally believed that a tunnel or subterranean passage led from the end of the Friary walk to which access is gained from the Cathedral Tower.’
ST THOMAS’S ISLAND CORBALLY CONNECTION:
‘Tradition has it,’ Mr. Fitt stated, “that there is an underground passage from the Cathedral to the Castle of Limerick, now known as King John’s Castle.’ Mr. Fitt mentioned that it was an established fact that St. Thomas’s Island (on which stood a Dominican Priory), on the Shannon at Corbally, was connected up with the mainland at Gabbet’s Grove by a subterranean passage. ‘After all, the question of the existence of a subterranean passage from the Cathedral, built as a King’s Palace in 1172, should not be dismissed as frivolous.’
(The foregoing information comes from the pages of the “Limerick Leader” and I can only guess that it was around ’56 or ’57, as Mr. John Sparling retired early in 1958, having come in from Adare in the earlier part of the 1900s, and very much respected family they were too, very early risers, industrious and extremely hard working)
Isn’t it amazing all the same how things pop into the mind upon reading an article such as the above. Anyone with even a slight dose of imagination and with a drop or two of literary juices running through their veins, could easily conjure up a little story or even a historical novel. Perhaps it could have to do with some sort of a furtive escape or even a few lively youths taking off on an adventure only to meet with more than an obstacle or two, or perhaps a creature who upbraids them and will not allow them to go forward or back. How do they spend the impasse? The possibilities to enlarge upon a great story are legion. An informed historian who still has an amount of ink in his pen awaiting release, would surely be capable of such an adventurous journey. Personally, I find the facts of the piece above quite fascinating.
ÁRD SCOIL MHUIRE CHRISTMAS FAIR:
Ardscoil Mhuire is delighted to be holding its first ever Christmas Craft Fair! A community and family friendly event, come and see a wide range of local craft-people's work and maybe pick up a few gifts for your loved ones! Time: 6.30pm to 9.30pm on Friday the 8th.
A VERY BUSY MARY STREET IN 1788:
It’s difficult to imagine what Limerick was like back almost 230 years ago but commercially Mary Street was vibrant and strong. For example, take a look at the following. George Alley (mercer), Thomas Alley (chandler), Abel Allison (cabinet-maker), Ellen Ankettle (wine merchant), James Barry (tobacconist), Alexander Blood (hosier), Barron & West (milliners), I Barret (breeches-maker), 2 Bluetts (spirit and wine makers), John Boyce (attorney at law), Thomas Bryan (gun maker), George Davis (apothecary), Edward Flin (printer and bookmaker), Richard Fitzgerald (saddler and bridle cutter), Bartholomew Graves (stocking maker), James Lyons (manufacturer of Queen’s gloves), Denis Kennedy (chandler and soap boiler), Mary Mell (gun maker). What a resilient lot of entrepreneurs they all were back in the 18th century as life progressed on into the next century, and one wonders how we are progressing in this century? Certainly a plethora of technology and the like but you’d be hard-pressed to find a decent handyman nowadays and I just had a thought: if the plug was pulled on all the high-tech gadgets, including computers, email etc, (God be praised!) what on earth would we do? I suppose life might slowly return to the type of business ventures we had on Mary Street back in 1788.
SEAMLESS SEWING ON NICHOLAS STREET:
Nicholas Street is beginning to come alive, slowly, but what matters, the important thing is it is beginning to wake up following years of pure commercial inactivity. However, Lyndsey McDonnell, native to the parish, has been running a successful business at number 17 there for a few years now. A novel part of her business Seamless Sewing Studio is her Theodore Teddies, where the customer is free to bring along the material they wish to have a purchased Teddy covered in. It could be plaid, corduroy, velvet, or even a two-tone colour of your child’s choice. And, let’s not be fooled, there are certain adults who have still held on to a precious childhood Teddy and may wish to have him covered, get a ‘new coat’ so to speak, in their favourite team colours. A qualified Fashion Designer, Lyndsey will mend any item you need done with her seamless sewing and will gladly attend to your alteration needs also. Her contact is as follows: 086-0680219: Facebook@Lyndsey mcdonnell seamless. Well done to this enterprising lady for her courage in starting up a business in what was then considered a moribund street.
“A good contriver is better than an early riser.”“A good name keeps its luster in the dark.” “When writing the story of your life Don’t let anyone hold the pen.” “A constant guest is never welcome.” “A clear conscience laughs at false accusations”OUR BARD’S WORDS OF WISDOM:“When our good fortune’s sun is up. How kind and pleasant are our friends? While o’er the social warming cup They offer love that never ends. Their words and looks all tend to please Our wish, till Fate begins to frown, And soon all these commence to freeze When our good fortune’s sun goes down.” Michael Hogan, died 1899
AA meetings take place in the Town House situated behind our church on Tuesday and Thursday at 8.30 pm every week.