Polish Coal

Polish Coal

The coal industry here in Ireland has gone through a huge decline in the last 2 decade. In major urban areas only smokeless coal is allowed and even then many people have gas or oil central heating. The days of frequent smog warnings are a thing of the past thankfully.

Here in Blarney some will burn any old thing in their fireplaces. On cold still winter evenings the smell of smoke pervades the area and the only thing we can do is close our windows to keep it out. That’s one of the downsides of living outside the city.

Years ago Monahan Road was the center of coal distribution in Cork. Suttons and Sheehan & Sullivan’s were two of the major players. Suttons even occupied that big office block at the end of the Grand Parade. My Dad worked in that office for years and he took us in there a few times. Still remember those occasions!

I also remember the bags of Polish Coal out in the back of the house. It was described as “the best coal”, though I can’t say for sure why.

Sheehan & Sullivan’s is gone now. Last time I drove past there was an office block on the site I think. Suttons is still around but owned by Bord na Mona now, last I heard. They left the offices in South Mall a long time ago.

Funny the memories a bag of coal can drag up.

Aperture ƒ/5.6
Camera Canon EOS 40D
Focal length 18mm
ISO 100
Shutter speed 1/250s

Storm clouds over Spanish Point

Storm Clouds over Spanish Point

A large and ominous storm cloud blew over Spanish Point in County Clare while we visited the beach there. Thankfully it only rained a tiny bit and didn’t spoil our time in the sand and on the rocks!

Aperture ƒ/9
Camera Canon EOS 40D
Focal length 18mm
ISO 100
Shutter speed 1/200s

Down, down, down the stairs

Down, down, down the stairs

Looking down the stairs in the public car park in Ennis, County Clare a few weeks ago. That was one hell of a tight car park to navigate. There was hardly any room to make corners or go up and down ramps.

Elevator only goes to the top two floors too and a sign on the ground floor warns parents or people with buggies and kids to park up there.

Aperture ƒ/4
Camera Canon EOS 40D
Focal length 10mm
ISO 400
Shutter speed 1/20s

Dick Copithorne

Dick Copithorne

The late Dick Copithorne was Belgooly Athletic club president until his sudden death in 2003 and just outside the village is a public bench with this plague on it in his memory.

December 20th: Christmas Road Races
…. On Sunday (St Stephens Day) the Belgooly 4 mile Road Race will be held. This is a very popular road race, always attracting a big crowd including many American based athletes home for Christmas. Last year the race winners were Martin McCarthy and Carmel Parnell of Leevale but last years sadly will be remembered for the sudden death of Belgooly Athletic club president Dick Copithorne while watching the finish of the race. His family are sponsoring the race this year and part of the entry fee will go to Bowel Cancer Research in the CUH. Race headquarters are in Belgooly GAA and the race starts at 12pm.
…..

January 10th – Belgooly 4 Prize Giving
Presentations of Prizes for the Belgooly 4 held on Dec 26th 2003 will take place in the Viaduct Inn, Bishopstown at 8pm on Wednesday, January 14th. Prizegiving on the day of the race had to postponed due to the sudden death of Belgooly club president Dick Copithorne. ….

The local club even runs a memorial race each year. What a wonderful way to remember a man obviously loved by his local community.

Aperture ƒ/7.1
Camera Canon EOS 40D
Focal length 10mm
ISO 100
Shutter speed 1/100s

End of the Celtic Tiger

End of the Celtic Tiger

Construction. Ireland is too dependent on it but that’s old news now, but unspeakable just a year (or two) ago. Anyway, it’s the end of the boom, construction work has flatlined. The End is Nigh (and booted out the backdoor while we weren’t looking).

Shot in Youghal a few months back.

Aperture ƒ/5.6
Camera Canon EOS 40D
Focal length 18mm
ISO 100
Shutter speed 1/100s