On Saturday the 10th June a small but enthusiastic group assembled at The Kingsley Hotel for our visit to Fort Camden in Crosshaven, Co. Cork, the event having been arranged by our PR Officer John O’Driscoll who was unfortunately unable to attend on the day. John was missed – not least because it meant the rest of us didn’t have the luxury of sitting back and doing what we were told!
We drove off from the Kingsley Hotel at 10.30am and arrived as arranged at 11.15am to find the gates locked but within a short time a very pleasant volunteer from the Fort arrived and arranged for our access. We parked the cars in the square and another extremely helpful and knowledgeable volunteer brought us on an interesting tour of the Fort and all its underground passages of which represents 65% of the Fort. The Fort goes back to its earliest fortification in 1550 but most of what you see today dates from the 1860s and was built by British Forces and convict labour from Spike Island. It wasn’t until 1938 that the Fort was handed over to the Irish Defence Forces and the Irish Tricolour was raised and I expect this is why they have added a Meagher to its title as Thomas Frances Meagher introduced the Tricolour as the national flag.
There is a lot more work to be done at Camden but I have no doubt that given the energy, enthusiasm and hard work these volunteers are doing this will happen, resulting in what should be a major tourist attraction for Cork and the wider community.
Thank you to those who attended and made it an enjoyable day out.
John F. Sheehan