Fleadh Weekly Update No 7 – Clare Champion

13th May 2016

SHARING CLARE – the concept

The concept of “Sharing Clare” has been developed to ensure that the cultural and natural beauty is shared with visitors to Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann Inis 2016. The Fleadh Committee invites Fleadh goers to experience all that Clare has to offer and  a programme of events and activities has been drawn up in different towns and villages throughout the county where the cultural tradition has been preserved for generations. Visitors will also be advised on local amenities and activities that will make their stay more enjoyable. Sharing Clare is part of the Clare County of Culture initiative developed by Clare County Council.

A special Sharing Clare sub-committee has been established by the Fleadh Executive Committee under Chairman Joe O’Connor. The following outline is a good introduction to many of the events and attractions on offer outside of Ennis during the Fleadh.


ENNISTYMON, TULLA, KILFENORA, FEAKLE, SCARIFF, COORACLARE, MILTOWN-MALBAY, QUIN are the towns and villages participating in the Sharing Clare Programme


Coach tour to the Cliffs of Moher followed by a special presentation seisiún by the Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann, Ennistymon Branch. The performances will take place at Ennistymon Teach Cheoil, originally a Gothic Revival Church dating back to 1830, home to Comhaltas in North Clare. The Teach Cheoil is host to visitors during the months of July & August when their renowned seisiún group plays to capacity audiences.



A unique East Clare Musical tour is organised along a 10k looped route starting in Ayle in Feakle near the home of legendary fiddle player Vincent Griffin. It travels through leafy winding roads to Magherabawn, passing the home of tin whistle player, Joe Bane and the homes of PJ & Martin Hayes, Bill Malley, Mikey & Paddy O’Donoghue and of course the famous Paddy Canny.

The bus tour which lasts about 2 hours will be followed by a lecture by concertina player, Mary McNamara on the musicians featured on the tour. The lecture will be held in the Archive Room at Cnoc na Gaoithe, the Tulla Comhaltas Centre. The Centre will also host a photographic exhibition and archive of music, song and culture from the locality.

Cnoc na Gaoithe is home to the acclaimed Comhaltas Group who travelled to Shanghai where they were special guests of the Shanghai People’s Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries during the St. Patricks’ Day celebrations.



Coach tour to the Burren with a Guided Burren Walk by Joe Queally including songs and tunes on the rocks in Blackhead. Lunch in Kilfenora followed by a visit to the Burren Centre. Visitors will have the opportunity to live the true Kilfenora experience and there will be music sessions for which the village is celebrated, in pubs like Linnane's , Nagle's and Vaughan's.



A bus tour will leave Ennis at 12 noon on the Wednesday & Saturday afternoons of Fleadh Week and will visit the Franciscan Abbey at Quin, Knappogue Castle, the Shannon Heritage site at Craggaunowen returning for light refreshments and an evening session at Malachy’s Bar in Quin.



A special ‘session’ will take place on Wednesday night the 17th August at the Windswept Inn organised by Tulla Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann.



A day trip to Holy Island with guide and historian Ger Madden, a visit to Seedsavers, a boat tour from Scariff Harbour to Lough Derg.are among the activities organised in Scariff. There is a chance to see the primeval oak woods at Raheen, St. Cronan’s Church in Tumagraney dating back to the 10th century (now Church of Ireland) and the stained glass windows in Scariff R.C Church from the Harry Clarke studio. The Tourist Office at the Market House in Scariff will be the hub for these events. Each pub will have a trad session with local musicians, including sean nós dancing and storytelling in the evening.

FEAKLE   |   FRIDAY AUGUST 19th 2016

A magical bus tour will depart from Ennis for the home of Biddy Early, the wise woman of Feakle, then to the village for a stop at the Johnny Patterson memorial where singer Kate Purcell will bring a tear to the eye of the visitor with some of Patterson’s best known songs - Goodbye Johnny Dear, The Stone Outside Dan Murphy’s Door and the Garden Where The Praties Grow. Then on to Lough Graney where excerpts of Brian Merriman’s epic poem ‘The Midnight Court’ will be read by the lake shore. Then back to Feakle for dinner (separate) and a traditional music session at Peppers.



Come West Along the Road to the Chapel Gates in Cooraclare. This day will celebrate one of west Clare’s favourite songs. A coach tour will travel from Ennis for a tour of the village visiting some of the locations mention in “The Chapel Gates” and discussing the history of this iconic song of emigration. This will be followed by a BBQ in O’Keefe’s Bar which will evolve into a traditional singing session courtesy of the Chapel Gates Singers Club.



Scoil Samhraidh Willie Clancy /Oidhreacht an Chláir  Concert with the Tulla and Laichtín Naofa Céilí bands and invited guests will perform in the Community Hall from 7pm -9pm or in the open air if weather permits. The concert will be followed by sessions in the pubs.