Full house for walled town seminar in Kildare town

Seminar held last week in Solas Bhride

Paula Campbell

Reporter:

Paula Campbell

Email:

paula@leinsterleader.ie

Full house for walled town seminar in Kildare town

Michael Fortune speaking at the recent Irish Walled Towns seminar

There was a full house at the recent Irish Walled Town Seiminar, which was held at Solas Bhride in Kildare town on Thursday, February 22 last.

The Irish Walled Towns Network (IWTN), an inititative of the Heritage Council of Ireland, partnered with Kildare Heritage Office and Kildare Arts Office to present the event, entitled Exploring Ways to Work Together.

The event was free of charge for attendees interested in improving the quality of life in Kildare town as a walled town.

Speakers included Charles Duggan, Dublin City Heritage Office; Michele Horrigan, curator of Askeaton Contemporary Arts; Deirdre O’Mahony, Alan Counihan, and Michael Fortune.

Workshops were designed to upskill attendees in working with artists, funding art and heritage projects, the legislative context of heritage sites, and good heritage interpretation practices

Folklore historian Michael Fortune gave a presentation on the importance of local tradition and folklore. as a He is collector of folklore and more as a lover of traditional song. He celebrates all things local especially folklore in all its glory and peculiar diversity.

“Keeping folklore alive in Kildare is so important,” said Michael. “

“I recorded all these stories and not just from the older generation from the young too. Even our accent in Kildare is in danger of dying out.”

Michael is described as a pioneer in the area of traditional and contemporary cultures.

He collects stories and songs from traditional singers from all over Ireland.

Meanwhile the network supports historic walled towns to make them better places to live, work and visit. There are three walled town members in Kildare: Athy, Castledermot and Kildare town. In recent years, IWTN members are increasingly more interested in working with artists in presenting the story of their town’s history.

For more pictures from the event, see page 58