Doneraile Park Visit

Enjoying Our Doneraile Park May 10th   by Seán Ó Callanáin
Visiting places of high regard is often coloured by the reports of those who have gone before. Poet Pat O Kelly’s review of his 1808 visit was less than five star praise:-
“Alas how dismal is my tale,
I lost my watch in Doneraile ___
May curses wholesale and retail
Pour with full force on Doneraile “

Thankfully the 30 plus RTAI walkers who visited Doneraile Park, came open-minded. Our visit was rewarded with a memorable walk, sunny weather and the best of company. All praise to Mary Fitzgerald for organising our outing and sourcing our guide —Michael O Sullivan. He wore his depth of knowledge lightly as he opened our eyes to an attraction that half a million visitors enjoyed last year.Like a latter day shepherd— staff in hand— he joined for us  dots of today’s Doneraile, to its elaborate mini – Versailles past.The ambition shown in diverting the river, creating a waterfall and terracing the main view from the house ,showed a flight of imagination and investment that is perhaps beyond todays best efforts.
The preparation for a visit by King George IV were well beyond a “ a lick of paint” proportions and must have lightened the pockets of the St. Leger family. That he failed to arrive must have tempted them to republicanism. The Kings “ Gabh mo leithscéal” note was nowhere in sight. Our guide had the happy knack of leading us to viewing spots that coupled with his words, illuminated the estates past and ambitious future. With Government support and local enthusiasm, we the people of Ireland-have a treasure in Doneraile of great worth.
The uplift of the outing ensured sharpened appetite to which the “ Tea Rooms” ensured a happy ending. The soup, light meals and desserts were top class and worthy of many stars.

As we left we felt rather like poet Pat O Reilly when the Lady of the Big House presented him with a new watch.
“May all from Belfast to Kinsale ,be half as good as Doneraile —-
May every wish and prayer avail, to crown the peace of Doneraile “

Summer events with RTAI Corcaigh

Don’t miss the opportunity to partake in these events, due to take place shortly!

1. Friday May 25th. 11.30a.m. Griffin’s Garden Centre.  Talk by Margaret Griffin, followed by lunch. €20. Organised by Mary Fitzgerald.

2. Thursday May 31st. Adare Historical Tour, led by Pat Naughton. This is sure to be  lively and interesting tour! Meet at Adare Heritage Centre 11a.m. Please see text message for contact details of Pat, and Mary Cahill (Committee).

3. Thursday 31st May. Camera Group have their final meeting before the summer. SMA centre Wilton. 2p.m.

4. Thursday June 7th. Mixed Golf outing/scramble at Muskerry G.C. Tee off 1.30 p.m. Names to Joe Lane by June 5th please.

Keep an eye out for text messages regarding more events before the summer break!

Spaisteoireacht na Bealtaine: Seoid gach lá!

Doneraile Park

The first of our walks for the month of May, was a very popular guided walk through the grounds of Doneraile Park. This walk was organised by Mary Fitzgerald, and took place on Thursday 10th May. Once again, we were blessed with a fine day. Mary had engaged Mr. Michael O’Sullivan to be our local guide.  It was a fascinating outing with a  superbly informed and good-humoured guide who delighted in calling ‘ciúnas!’ and invited us later to visit his own historic home, Creagh House, formerly the abode of the estate agent for the St. Leger estate at Doneraile. The sun shone too and we enjoyed a tasty lunch. Thanks to Mary for an excellent outing, enjoyed by all.

Thanks to Joe Carroll and Elizabeth O’Connell for the photos below:



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Glenshelane Woods

On Wednesday 16th May, the hillwalkers gathered in Cappoquin, Co. Waterford,  on a beautiful sunny morning. We were being taken to nearby Glenshelane Woods, ably led by Helen and Dick Waide. The walk followed the course of the Glenshelane river, through dappled forest paths, under the canopy of new leaves, and bordered by bluebells and wild garlic.


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Luckily our guides knew the forest well. When we came to a spot on the path where a man was employing some machinery, we had no option but to turn back and find an alternative path. No bother to Helen and Dick!

This is a beautiful forest path, not too difficult a walk. It crosses the river at various points on well-maintained bridges. There’s a scouting centre too, in a perfect clearing.

We stopped for sustenance (corporal and spiritual) at the grotto near Mount Mellaray. After that we returned through the forest, to Cappoquin, where we had a delicious lunch in Barrons Bakery. Many of the group members took the opportunity to buy some of the freshly baked goods to take home.

Thanks to Elizabeth O’Connell and Mags McCarthy for the photos.



Legal talk by Tim Bracken

A large group of teachers attended the excellent legal talk  by Tim Bracken at  Oriel House recently. Tim spoke about  the importance of making a will. He explained about Powers of attorney and the reasons why this should be arranged by people of any age.  He spoke about inheritance and tax exemptions as well as the Succession Act.

Tim gave clear answers to the many questions which were posed by the audience. This was a really worthwhile event and was well received by those in attendance. Tim is a well-know legal author having written books about probate and  modern family relationships and the law among others. He is frequently heard providing legal advice on the RTE Radio 1 Seán O’Rourke programme.