Back to school days for for­mer pupils of Lis­goold/Ballincur­rig NS

Irish Examiner - County - - News - Christy Parker

A re­union for past pupils and teach­ers from the for­mer Lis­goold/Ballincur­rig pri­mary school will be held at the East Cork Golf Club, Mi­dle­ton on Septem­ber 16.

The day­time event is be­ing or­gan­ised by past pupils Noreen Fitzger­ald, John-Joe O’Re­gan and Kitty O’Sul­li­van. It com­mences at 3.30pm and the rec­om­mended con­tri­bu­tion is €10. In­quiries to Kitty O’Sul­li­van (087-6160009).

The re­union will fea­ture a Power Point ar­chive pre­sen­ta­tion, in­clud­ing tes­ti­mony from a 1937/8 folk­lore study con­ducted with the pupils.

The un­prece­dented gather­ing will reach out to a dwin­dling num­ber of in­di­vid­u­als whose lives “share the same thread” across eight years of says Noreen.

The or­gan­iser be­lieves some sur­vivors “would have had par­ents or grand­par­ents who lived in Famine times, with unique rec­ol­lec­tions of life out­side and within the school”. The ed­u­ca­tion board built the fa­cil­ity near a crooked bridge be­tween Lis­goold and Ballincur­rig in 1846, prob­a­bly from Famine re­lief funds.

Now a pri­vate res­i­dence, closed in 1968.

It was “dark, cold and hewn out of pure rock”, says Noreen, who at­tended from 1954 to 1962. It had two par­ti­tioned class­rooms with two teach­ers and chil­dren seated up to eight per bench. Chil­dren of­ten walked miles on un­sur­faced roads to at­tend, sus­tained by sand­wiches and milk.

Noreen re­calls two pot­belchild­hood, it lied stoves for heat­ing and a teacher dis­tribut­ing co­coa from a primus with buck­ets of wa­ter drawn from the nearby Owe­nacurra river.

Past pupils in­cluded the late Seán Ó Riordáin, best known for three Ir­ish po­ems pub­lished in 1960’s and the award­win­ning Mau­rice Ri­or­dan a for­mer Whit­bread Prize nom­i­nee, ap­pointed edi­tor of the

in 2013.

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