Limerick will mark the 100th anniversary of the Easter Rising this coming Sunday and Monday with a wreath laying ceremony at the main 1916 Commemoration Monument on Sarsfield Bridge in Limerick City, and the official opening of four 1916 Memorial Gardens in Limerick City, Rathkeale, Kilmallock and Newcastle West.
Sunday April 24th marks one hundred years to the day since the largest uprising against British rule in Ireland since the 1798 Rebellion began.
Two of the sixteen leaders executed after the Easter Rising were Limerick men, namely Con Colbert and Edward Daly. Eamonn De Valera, raised in Bruree, Co. Limerick, also played a significant role and was a leader in 'Bolands Mill'. Kathleen Clarke (nee Daly) was a founding member of Cumann na mBan and she set up the Prisoners’ Dependants Fund immediately after the Rising. Meanwhile, Dr. Richard Hayes fought in the Rising, seeing action with Thomas Ashe at Ashbourne, Co. Meath. He was arrested and imprisoned in England.
The centenary commemorations begin at 11.00am this Sunday with the opening of a Memorial Garden at Merchant's Quay followed by a wreath laying ceremony at the main 1916 Commemoration Monument on Sarsfield Bridge in Limerick City at 11.30am. Sarsfield Bridge will be closed to vehicular traffic from 11.15am to 12.00pm (midday) to facilitate the ceremony. Meanwhile, a Memorial Garden will be opened at Area Offices of Limerick City and County Council in Kilmallock at 3.30pm.
On Monday 25th April, Memorial Gardens also will be officially unveiled at the Area Offices in Newcastle West and Rathkeale at 11.00am and 3.00pm respectively.
"The 1916 Rising, which took place 100 years ago this very weekend, changed Ireland forever," stated Cllr. Liam Galvin, Mayor of the City and County of Limerick.
"With these Memorial Gardens we are creating both a fitting and lasting legacy to an event in Irish history that shapes us to this day," he added.
Led by Limerick City & County Council and under the guidance of the local 1916 Co-ordinator, the programme is the outcome of consultations with interested local groups, organisations and individuals who were invited to participate in the planning and implementation of events and initiatives during 2016.
Further information on the Ireland 2016 Centenary Programme is available at www.ireland.ie.