" A wealth of information..."

"1169 And Counting is a wealth of information on our Republican past and present , and demonstrates how the Irish political landscape , like that of any nation, will never be a black and white issue..."

(From the ‘e-Thursday’ section of the ‘Business Week’ supplement of the ‘Irish Independent’ , 21st August 2008.)

IRISH BLOG AWARDS 2017 - ooops! It seems that our entry application was "not completed in time to be considered.." (?) and, as such, we are not now in the running. But we wish all the best to the successful entrants and to the organisers, and we hope all goes well for them on the day!

Wednesday, December 26, 2012


The CABHAIR swim banner , on display at the 3rd Lock at Inchicore, Dublin, on December 25th 2012.

About seventy people turned up to watch the annual CABHAIR Christmas Day Swim at the 3rd Lock of the Grand Canal in Inchicore , Dublin, yesterday , and they, in turn, were being watched by the occupants of two Special Branch cars, who endeavoured to record , at the canal entry point, the personal details of all present , including Santa Clause, who later lamented that he hadn't got a couple of wild reindeer with him to 'introduce' them to ! The weather , whilst dry, was cold , with a strong, constant breeze blowing down the wind-tunnel that the canal is, from the Bluebell direction, but that didn't deter the crowd or those that were 'booked in' to actually do the swim.

The CABHAIR organisation had, as usual, provided the usual 'goodies' for the crowd, including mince pies, endless cups of hot whiskey , beer, ale , lemonade , crisps , sweets, christmas crackers etc , all laid out on two tables , yards away from a roaring fire and all within earshot of a twin-speakered music system, which filled that part of the canal with Irish rebel music. Between the noise from the crowd, the music, the kids and the constant loud beeping and honking of support from the cars and vans etc which slowly drove past the site,the noise, at times,was over-powering but made for a fantastic atmosphere.

Over the three-and-a-half hours that the event lasted for, eight swimmers bravely took the plunge , not only 'earning' their own keep but also earning much-needed funds for the dependants of Irish Republican prisoners , and the speech delivered from the Lock (!) , in the usual rough-and-ready fashion, by John Horan, emphasised that important point , adding that CABHAIR had also organised sponsored swims this month in Armagh and Wexford, and that the first such CABHAIR fund-raiser of 2013 will be held at Coney Island , New York, on New Years Day. Altogether we rounded-up about twenty pics of the Dublin Swim , eight of which we publish with this post and the rest can be viewed at the links mentioned, below , plus a video of the proceedings can be seen via 'Facebook' , at the link supplied.

Seven of the eight CABHAIR swimmers....


One of the swimmers, searching for a mermaid....

...this fella thinks he's spotted her whilst....

....this swimmer thinks she's 'over there'.....

....but it's these two lads that have the best catch of the day....

....and all this swimmer gets is a big squishy hug from Santa !

More Swim pics can be viewed here and here (posts dated Wednesday 26th December 2012) and a four-minute long video of the event (via 'Facebook') can be seen here , and a full report (and more pics) will be published in the January 2013 issue of 'Saoirse'. Congrats and a cheerful 'Well Done !' to almost all of those who turned up yesterday at the 3rd Lock of the Grand Canal in Inchicore , Dublin, for their help in ensuring that our prisoners and their loved ones have a wee bit less of a burden to carry with them into the New Year.

Thanks for reading, Sharon.