27-29 June: Byrne-Perry Summer School, Gorey, Co. Wexford.

Unknown‘Ireland and the Great War’ was the subject of the annual Byrne-Perry Summer School, which took place in Gorey Public Library on Friday-Sunday, 27– 29 June. The Summer School is now in its twentieth year of the summer school, which has been presided over by Fr Walter Forde since its inception. This year the Byrne-Perry Summer School dealt with the Great War and its legacy, with a particular focus on the regional implications for ordinary people across Ireland.


It remains unclear exactly how many Irishmen died in the conflict and several new databases of Irish war dead have recently been made available online: the most recent, ‘Ireland’s Memorial Records’, lists the details of 49,000 Irishmen who perished between 1914-1918. This year’s Gordon Wilson Memorial Lecture, which opened the summer school,  was entitled ‘John Redmond and the Great War’, held in the Gorey public library and was delivered John Redmond’s biographer, Dermot Meleady. The lecture was open to the public and was introduced by Professor Daire Keogh, President of St Patrick’s College, Drumcondra.


The summer school continued with three discussion panels on Saturday and Sunday morning debating the regional impact of the War; participants included James Curry (NUIG), Rev. Brian Kennaway (Irish Association), Meredith Meaghar (Notre Dame), Ida Milne (QUB), Philip Orr, and Padraig Yeates. Each panel was followed by a question and answer session. On Saturday afternoon, participants were taken on a tour, led by Monica Crofton, featuring visits to sites in Wexford associated with John Redmond and the Great War. The summer school concluded on Sunday morning with a History Ireland Hedge School on the legacies of the Great War in relation to Ireland


For the full programme, click here.


Registration is available at the Summer School itself or by visiting the summer school website.


To read a short biography of John Redmond, from UCC Multitext, click here.


To view a selection of testimonies by Irish veterans of the First World War from the RTÉ archives, explore RTÉ’s online exhibition on Ireland and the Great War.


For further details contact the director of the summer school, Dr Conor McNamara, at 085 7069211.


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