On Friday 29th January 2016 Ann Phelan, Minister for State for Rural Economic Development and Social Enterprise, along with Cllr. Charlie Murphy, Cathaoirleach of Carlow County Council and Cllr. Fintan Phelan, Chairperson of the ‘Carlow Ireland 2016 Committee’ launched the ‘Carlow Ireland 2016 Programme’ which will see the county host over sixty events to mark the one hundredth anniversary of the 1916 Rising.

Cllr. Charlie Murphy, Cathaoirleach of Carlow County Council said at the launch that ‘all the commemorations will individually and collectively mark a key moment in the foundation of this State. 2016 is a time to reflect on the events of Easter 1916, the last one hundred years and to look to the future.’

The ‘Carlow Ireland 2016 Centenary Programme’ has come about as a result of twelve months work by the Carlow Ireland 2016 Committee seeking submissions from the public during with suitable ideas and suggestions for commemorative events. Over the course of last summer the Committee arranged the ‘Carlow 2016 Grants Scheme’ for community led projects which saw twenty nine groups share € 25,000 in grant aid. These community participation events allow for real citizen engagement with Ireland 2016. A number of projects will also be undertaken through Carlow County Council and its institutions namely our Carlow Library Service, Carlow Arts Office and Carlow County Museum.

Cllr. Fintan Phelan speaking as the Chairperson of the ‘Carlow Ireland 2016 Committee stated that ‘it is pleasing to see so many communities and organisations around the county undertaking commemorations in their area. These will take the form of opening commemorative gardens, exhibitions, photographic displays, pieces of theatre and plays, unveiling of plaques and art commissions, parades, lectures, art exhibitions, re-enactments, sporting competitions and reading of the Proclamation. I would like to on behalf of the Committee to thank them for their interest and foresight in developing projects to mark such an important year.’

Commandant Stephen MacEoin, speaking on behalf of Ireland 2016 said that over two thousand events will take place nationally and that the large crowd that were attending the launch is testament to the huge interest by people in this period and to the foundation of our country.

Dr Conor Kostick who is the biographer of Micheál O’Hanrahan said that Carlow can be rightly proud of their connection to him and that he was the second most recorded name in the Dublin police records of the time. His role prior to the Rising as Quartermaster was important and should not be under estimated.

In launching the programme Minister Phelan said that she is delighted to see that young people of Carlow have decided to take part in the 2016 programme, in particular the projects which primary and secondary schools are bringing forward including Project Revolution.

Click here to view the Carlow Ireland 2016 Centenary Programme