Roscrea Credit Union Supports “Roscrea Through The Ages Website”
Thursday the 17th of April 2014 will prove to be another historic evening in the social history of Roscrea, as a small committee of local people come together with their local Credit Union to launch a wonderful and exciting new website called “Roscrea Through The Ages”. The big launch which promises to be a most memorable evening will take place in “The White House” at 8.30pm and all are invited to come along and see for themselves the fruits of this great project.
Pictured at Roscrea Credit Union for the first viewing of the eagerly anticipated “Roscrea through The Ages Website” are L/R:
Liam Phelan (Vice Chairman Of Roscrea Credit Union), Dick Conroy (Secretary Of Roscrea Credit Union), Joe Coughlan (Promoter Of Roscrea Through The Ages Website & Committee) Brian King (Manager Of Roscrea Credit Union)
The story of the website can be traced back to 2013 when Sharon Mulrooney, Joe Moloughney and Joe Coughlan got together and opened a facebook page called “Roscrea Through The Ages”. They all have an interest in local history especially the folk history of the area and its people. They all had heard tales of times past from parents and grandparents and were afraid all these stories would be lost so they decided to collect and compile these and share them with others. In May 2013 they started a facebook page and were astonished by the response they got in the first week alone. To date nearly 1400 people have joined the site and they are getting as many as 5000 hits per week.
The photo is of Moynans Garage in Main Street, Roscrea as it was in the late 1930s. The photo is one of many rare and wonderful items you will find on the “Roscrea Through The Ages Website”
Among the features on the new website are stories such as the train crash in 1910 on the Roscrea to Birr line in which 800 people were injured. The story of ninety orphan girls between the ages of 14 and 17 who were sent to Australia from the workhouse in 1848 because there was a shortage of females in Australia is also recalled. The amazing story of Daisy Bates who was born in Main Street, Roscrea and went to Australia and spent the last forty years of her life living in a tent and documenting the lives and fighting for the rights of Aborigines after spending years living among the gentry is told. There are also some local poems and writings submitted by local people and from Roscrea descendants on every continent. Others have submitted some rare photos such a Nuala Mooneyes Photos taken in the castle yard during the civil war and a huge collection from the family of the late Billy Delaney. There is also an interview recorded in 1973 with Jack Moyney who won the Victoria Cross in 1915. This is just a small selection of the vast wealth of material that has been collected much of which is already on the facebook page and all of which will be available for posterity on the new website.
In December 2013 the local group decided that the facebook page was so popular that that there should be a more permanent record made of this material that so that it would be available to schools and students of the future. At this stage Roscrea Credit Union got involved. The Manager of the Credit Union, Brian King said this week that when he presented the idea to the Board of Directors of establishing a website based on the success of the Roscrea Through The Ages Facebook Page that would be used for generations to come, the request was greeted with great enthusiasm. As has been typical of many credit union supported projects over the years, credit union personnel were also delighted to roll their sleeves up and get involved in helping bring the project to fruition. Joe Coughlan said this week that the expertise of Brian King and Dick Conroy was invaluable and that he and the committee are absolutely thrilled with the result. Dick Conroy who designed the website said has been a Director with Roscrea Credit Union for many years and that this was certainly one of the most rewarding projects that he has worked on. Dick said that the website looked good, was easy to navigate and has great potential. Brian King speaking with his Roscrea Enhancement Plan hat on said that the project was of enormous benefit with regards raising the profile of Roscrea. Brian praised Joe Coughlan in particular for driving the project and said he couldn’t speak highly enough of Dick Conroy who epitomises the volunteer ethos of the credit union and goes above and beyond the call of duty on a regular basis to serve both the credit union and many other local organisations in which he is involved.
The website is now ready to go live and will be launched as mentioned above in the function room in the White House on Thursday 17th April at 8.30 by local historian and folklorist Kathleen Moloughney. There will be an exhibition of photos of Roscrea going back as far as 1900 on the night and there will also be stories and songs from Roscrea on the night with special guests. Admission is free and the organsing committee would love to see you all there on the night.