Hello and welcome
to this week’s issue of Ireland’s Own.
We are another week closer to summer and there are signs of improvement in the weather, so we have a lot to look forward to on our beautiful island.
In this week’s cover story we have the fascinating story of Tom McGrath, the Waterford man who escaped from a POW camp during WWII. Cian Manning recounts Tom McGrath Junior’s incredible story of his father’s conscription into the British Army, his escape from a prisoner-of-war camp in Poland, his daring journey across Europe and subsequent recapture – and the devastating news that awaited him in England. Tom’s research also led him to discover that his mother also carried a heartbreaking secret.
Edith Head, designer to the stars, is profiled by Mary Moloney. Liam Nolan continues to chart the stories of the world’s most loved musicals, this week, the ‘Bells Are Ringing’. In his Ballad Sheet series, Eugene Dunphy tries to solve the riddle of a revolutionary ballad in The Dying Rebel.
The Role of the Irish in WW2 continues apace and this week Con McGrath profiles Pilot Officer Charles Dillon, the Tipperary hero who made a gallant escape after ‘crash landing’ in Denmark, only to be killed accidently post-war.
Ellen Hutchins was known as ‘the Botanist of Bantry Bay’. Deirdre Ní Chuanacháin tells the story of the accomplished botanist who discovered many new species. In the ‘Wreck of the SS Gairsoppa’, Christopher Warner recalls the sinking of the British merchant vessel off the coast of Galway in 1941.
The book under review this month is The Nickel Boys by Colson Whithead, our original short story is ‘The Football Fan, A Tale of Old Seamus’, by Gerry McCullough. This week’s classic film is ‘Wall Street’ starring Michael Douglas and Charlie Sheen, and Paul Swift takes a trip along the Morningstar River.
In Eamonn Duggan’s Witness Statements series, he brings us part two of his feature on Robert Barton, Ireland’s Revolutionary Enigma. Read the evidence given by Robert C. Barton, Glendalough House, Co. Wicklow, to the Bureau of Military History.
We have all this for you to enjoy alongside your regular favourites including Cassidy Says, Showband Scrapbook, Dan Conway’s Corner, Pete’s Pets, jokes, songs, puzzles, memories, Marjorie’s Kitchen and much much more.
Enjoy the read, and I will look forward to talking to you all again next week. Take care.
Seán Nolan, Editor, Ireland’s Own