Home » Tag Archives: Spancilhill

Tag Archives: Spancilhill

It takes a village…to reduce speeding in Clare community

CHANGING the proposed zoning designation of Spancilhill from a ‘cluster’ to a ‘small village’ in the Clare County Development Plan would help reduce speed limits and address “dangerous levels” of traffic speeding which has split the community in two, a meeting of councillors has been told. The “ongoing safety concerns” of residents due to speeding in Spancilhill was raised at the monthly meeting of the Ennis Municipal District by Councillor Clare Colleran Molloy. She added that locals are of the view that recent road improvements and markings are “insufficient” while asking if VMS signs could be considered. While Councillor Johnny Flynn confirmed he has made a submission to the Draft Clare County Development Plan 2023-2029 seeking to change the proposed zoning designation. Responding to Councillor Colleran Molloy’s motion, Eamon O’Dea, Senior Executive Engineer stated, “The line marking contractor carrying out the sign and lining work at Spancilhill Low Cost Safety Scheme were unable to complete the line marking work due …

Read More »

Spancilhill Fair at risk due to inability to get insurance

THE future of the Spancilhill Fair is in jeopardy, because the organisers are struggling to get insurance, Clare TD Michael McNamara has told the Dáil. He said it is a signficant part of Ireland’s heritage, and could be lost if the Government doesn’t step in to protect it. “I wish to raise the fair at Spancilhill. I am sure everyone in the House knows it is on June 23. It is an important cultural institution in Ireland. It is obviously an important horse fair both nationally and internationally. It goes beyond that and is now a cultural icon. It was recently included in Ireland’s national inventory of intangible cultural heritage. Like much of our intangible cultural heritage, it is not only intangible but is endangered and will not be around for much longer unless the Government takes action to protect it because it cannot now get insurance. Insurance is a significant obstacle for any event. Occupier’s liability is an issue …

Read More »

WATCH: US visitors enjoy singsong at iconic Spanchilhill

A LARGE group of Americans visited the Cross of Spancilhll this week, part of a folk group from Michigan that travels to places they know of from songs. Local man Michael Brohan said the visit shows the extent of the reach of the song. “People know the song from the likes of Christy Moore and the Pogues and the great Robbie McMahon probably made it famous. It was a poem in the beginning, people think of it as a song but it was a poem at the start by an emigrant who went to America. “Robbie McMahon brought it to life in song and since then it’s been taken up by a lot of famous Irish singers, Christy Moore, the Pogues, the Dubliners, everyone sings it, it’s probably the most recognised ballad from Ireland. “Anywhere I’ve been around the world when people have a sing song Spancilhill is one of the first songs that come to mind.” Michael said that …

Read More »

Spancilhill singers still going after 20 years

IN late 2001  Spancilhill publican Mike Duggan approached the late Robbie McMahon about starting a monthly singing session.  Local resident Pat Liddy quickly got involved and in January 2002 the first session was held in Duggan’s Pub in Spancilhill. Twenty years on, the sessions are still going, and while they are online for the moment, they will hopefully be going back to a local pub in the near future. After they first began the sessions quickly gained in popularity primarily due to the legendary Robbie. The first Friday became known as a welcoming session for singers of all standards with as many coming to listen as those who came to sing or recite on the night. People travelled from all over to spend a night in good company. Camper vans parked overnight were regularly to be seen as people arrived from all over the country. During the tourist season singer’s from Canada, the USA, Britain, France, Australia, Argentina all frequented the …

Read More »

Spancilhill community ‘cut in half’ due to speeding motorists

SPEEDING motorists have “cut the community in half” in Spancilhill preventing locals from crossing the road to meet with friends and neighbours, a meeting of Ennis councillors heard this week. Councillor Clare Colleran Molloy highlighted the fears of residents in Spancilhill at a meeting of the Ennis Municipal District saying, “They are very worried and concerned”. She outlined that local people have discussed the issue with John Gannon, Senior Executive Engineer adding, “I know the district is doing its best to address this, the people had fear in their eyes when they spoke with John, they believe there is going to be an accident. The traffic is coming into the area from a higher standard of road into an 80km an hour area but they are going substantially faster.” She acknowledged that the council have been working with An Garda Siochana. The councillor requested that the Spancilhill area be defined as ‘Settlement’ in the new County Development Plan, as it …

Read More »

Bad vibrations: Clare community seeks anti-speeding measures

RESIDENTS living at Spancilhill Cross can “almost feel the vibrations of traffic coming at top speed” heading towards Ennis, writes Jessica Quinn. A meeting of Ennis Municipal District councillors heard calls were made for more garda patrols of the route. The Council has agreed to monitor traffic speeds on the R352 and the findings will be reported to An Garda Siochana. The concerns of residents were raised by Councillor Clare Colleran Molloy who sought a review of the cross for low-cost safety scheme design. She outlined the “serious health and safety concerns” with traffic at the Spancilhill Cross and the “ongoing speeding” on this section of the Tulla Road. She recalled a collision had been reported just days before the meeting of councillors. In light of that she suggested a series of measures to address the community’s serious concerns about speeding on this section of road. The councillor stated Ennis Municipal District should coordinate with the Gardaí to patrol this …

Read More »

Spancilhill recognised for contribution to cultural heritage

SPANCILHILL International Horse Fair is to be recognised at the highest level for its contribution to Ireland’s cultural heritage. Minister Catherine Martin announced that the renowned fair is to be among eight practices to be added to the National Inventory of Intangible Cultural Heritage. Theo other activities are Beekeeping, Clones Crochet Lace Making, Headford Lace Making, Irish Traditional Travelling Circus and Funfair, Lá an Dreoilín/Wren Day, Native Irish Cattle Breeding, and Traditional Seine Boat Building, Fishing and Racing. Speaking on behalf of the Spancilhill Fair Association, Michael Duggan said there is great local pride in the horse fair. “I am delighted that the Tradition of the Spancilhill International Horse Fair will be included as part of the National Inventory of Intangible Cultural Heritage,” he said. “I want to thank the Minister that she saw fit to include this tradition that is over 400 years old as part of the recognised cultural heritage of Ireland. We are very proud of the …

Read More »
Photographer and musician Christy McNamara. Photograph by John Kelly.

Christy turns to his art and finds response to absence of the Fair

THE Spancilhill Fair would have taken place this Wednesday, but, due to Covid-19 has been cancelled for the second year in a row. Crusheen’s Christy McNamara has come up with a mixed media piece as an artistic response to the absence of the Fair, drawing on his experience of photographing it for more than 30 years and attending it for even longer. Having grown up just a few miles from the site of the Fair, it was one of the highlights of the year for him as a boy, and he has always had a great fondness for it. “I love it. I’ve been going to it since I was a young fella. When we were growing up our house was on the way to Spancilhill for a lot of people. “One of the things I remember vividly was the Travelling people on their way to Spancilhill passing our house in convoy, with horsedrawn barrel tents and flat cars. “It …

Read More »