Only club in coun­try with own mar­ket

Irish Examiner - Farming - - COUNTRY LIVING - He­len O’Cal­laghan

Bal­ly­de­hob/Schull ICA is the only guild in the coun­try to hold a weekly mar­ket over 10 weeks dur­ing the sum­mer. It takes place in Bal­ly­de­hob Hall for an hour and a half on Fri­day morn­ings dur­ing July, Au­gust, and for two weeks of Septem­ber.

“We do bak­ing. We grow toma­toes, car­rots, and pota­toes. I’ve grown grapes in a tun­nel. Peo­ple do come to the mar­ket, in­clud­ing vis­i­tors to the area,” says Nora McSween e y , g u i l d s e c re t a r y s i n c e April, who joined ICA in 1986. “I have a plaque I won for a bak­ing com­pe­ti­tion in the 1980s,” says Nora, who is part of an ICA wool-spin­ning group that meets weekly in Brigid O’Brien’s home in Lisheen. Last week, the group was look­ing for­ward to a wool dye­ing work­shop at El­iz­a­beth Sav­age’s house. “We use onion skins, fen­nel, black­berry, and beet­root to make the dyes.” The guild was founded in 1979 and has 17 mem­bers. “We did a fash­ion show fundraiser last year in Abbeystrew­ery Hall. Prior to that, we did a fundraiser for Schull Hospi­tal. “A t m o n t h l y m e e t i n g s , we’ve had speak­ers in to talk about [top­ics from] sea urchins to SAGE (Sup­port & Ad­vo­cacy Ser­vices for Older Peo­ple). We’ve had a fab­u­lous sto­ry­teller in, as well as demos of felt­ing, flower-ar­rang­ing and chair yoga.”

Guild mem­bers also love go­ing on out­ings and this year teamed up with Bal­ly­de­hob Mothers’ Union for a trip to the Mac­room Buf­falo Moz­zarella en­ter­prise.

The guild meets at 8pm on the sec­ond Thursday of the month in Bal­ly­de­hob Hall. Teas, cof­fees and nib­bles are served and they al­ways have a nice raf­fle. They will host the ta­ble quiz for the West Cork re­gion in Bal­ly­de­hob Hall on Mon­day, Oc­to­ber 16. They hosted the event too in 2014.

Bal­ly­de­hob Guild mem­bers: Su­san Thomas, Bar­bara Doyle, Nora McSweeney, Anna Dug­gan, Iris Sweet­nam and Carmel Waddy.

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