on pavement grey

Where you can find the London addresses that were important to famous Irish people and of people who were important to Ireland.

Archive for the category “politics”

He Died For a Dream

Tom Kettle, Nationalist MP and poet born Artane, Dublin is commemorated on the Parliamentary War Memorial in Westminster Hall.

He left us the lines, “…Died not for flag, nor King, nor Emperor But for a dream, born in a herdsman’s shed And for the secret scripture of the poor”. From, To My Daughter Betty, The Gift of God.

Tom_Kettle

image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

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The ‘big fellah’ lived in London for nearly a third of his life

Michael Collins, revolutionary, born 1890 in Sam’s Cross near Clonakility Co Cork. He left there in 1906 to work in London where he lived and worked for nearly a third of his life.

 

In 1914 he moved into a flat at 5 Netherwood Road, W14 which he shared with his sister Hannie. A discreet plaque commemorates its illustrious resident.

Around the corner and behind the Olympia Exhibition Centre at 23 Blythe Road W14, is Blythe House, the Post Office Savings bank where he worked until 1910.

 

Thanks to Katie Walsh for sourcing these gems.

For more information, especially on Collins’ life in London, see Michael Collins: A Life by James Mackay, Mainstream Publishing 1996.

michael_collins_12_august_1922

photo courtesy of Wikimedia commons

A London walk this weekend

The erudite and entertaining Tony McDonnell will be leading his famous Camden walk, When the String Broke, literally exploring the Irish connection with Camden – which was as far as the poor migrant got from Euston before the string broke on the suitcase.

The walk starts from Camden tube station (Kentish Town side) at 10:30 this Sunday.  There is a fee but it’s great value for the two or more hours of education, entertainment and light exercise that Blue-Badge guide Tony offers. He will be happy to answer your questions, his number is 07850 184790.

Last Sunday, on the Emerald City Tour, Tony led a very convivial group from St Paul’s to Covent Garden. In about two and a half hours we walked in the footsteps of Oscar Wilde, GB Shaw, WB Yeats, Oliver Goldsmith, Samuel Johnson and William Gladstone to name the proverbial few.

As Goldsmith might have said, “…and still they gazed and still the wonder grew that one small head should carry all it knew.”

An artist in the dark art of propaganda

File:The Arrest of William Joyce ('lord Haw Haw') in Germany, May 1945 BU6911.jpg

This is photograph BU 6911 from the collections of the Imperial War Museums.

William JOYCE (Lord Haw-Haw) broadcaster (of fascist propaganda) born New York 1906 to unionist, Irish parents, grew up in Galway and executed in Wandsworth prison, London SW18 in 1946. With his wife Margaret, he left for Germany just before the outbreak of World War Two where they enjoyed an ‘interesting’ relationship. Announced with his droning of “Germany calling, Germany calling…” Joyce’s broadcasts were tuned into by millions of people.

The verdict of treason that led to his execution was controversial in that he lied to get the British passport he held and not being a legal British citizen could not have be guilty of treason against Britain – had his passport expired he would probably have escaped hanging.

The life of William Joyce contrasted with that of Brendan Bracken, previous entrant here, this contrast was the subject of Double Cross a play by Thomas Kilroy.

It’s a long way from Tipperary to 10 Downing Street

File:Winston Churchill at the Quebec Conference, August 1943 H32144.jpgFile:No. 10 Downing Street (7954372992).jpg

Dignitaries on the terrace at the Citadel overlooking Quebec Harbour, 18 August 1943. Seated are Anthony Eden (Foreign Secretary); President Roosevelt; the Countess of Athlone; Winston Churchill. Standing are the Earl of Athlone (Governor General of Canada); Mackenzie King (Prime Minister of Canada); Sir Alexander Cadogan (Permanent Under Secretary for Foreign Affairs); Brendan Bracken (Minister of Information).

Photograph: H 32144 from the collections of the Imperial War Museums via Wikimedia Commons. Photograph of No. 10 taken by Leonard Bentley via Wikimedia Commons.

Brendan BRACKEN, Minister for Information during World War II, Private Secretary to Winston Churchill, Privy Counciller and publisher born near Templemore Co. Tipperary 1901 lived on North Street (number required) and, for the duration of the War, at 10 Downing Street. Having led a full and prosperous life (he was a founder and Chairman of the Financial Times), he died in 1958.

Recommend looking up Bracken House, Cannon Street/Friday Street, near St Paul’s London EC4. This fellow blogger has a very authoritative feature, https://baldwinhamey.wordpress.com/2015/01/ 

Nineteen names and a big thank you

A big thank you to the increasing number of followers, commenters and visitors. You make it all worthwhile. Wishing you all the happiest of new years. And, thank you, to many of these other bloggers whose work I am enjoying.

The list of names here so far features a range of great Irish names from diverse fields (and mostly good London addresses!). There are more ready to be posted and yet more under research. I hope they will surprise and inform in equal measure. As a reminder here they all are, in reverse order, not forgetting the thousands commemorated at the Crown, Cricklewood,

William Butler YEATS

Sir Francis BEAUFORT

George Bernard SHAW

Sir Ernest Henry SHACKLETON

Dr Thomas John BARNARDO

Duke of WELLINGTON

Francis BACON

Countess Constance MARKIEWICZ

Erskine Robert CHILDERS

Daniel MACLISE

Oliver GOLDSMITH 

Bernardo O’HIGGINS

Daniel  O’ CONNELL

John Henry FOLEY

Bram STOKER

Richard Brinsley SHERIDAN

St Oliver PLUNKETT

Katharine O’ Shea

Louis MACNEICE

Last posting was a saint this one a ‘sinner’

File:KittyOShea.jpg

Katharine O’ Shea (Kitty to her enemies) lived at 112 Tressillian Road SE4. Although born in Essex (1846) to a well connected family, her affair with and subsequent marriage to Charles Stewart Parnell stirred great moral outrage that affected the cause of Home Rule and altered the course of Irish history. A perfect example of not Irish but important to Ireland.

File:Charles Stuart Parnell cabinet card.jpgMap of 112 Tressillian Rd, London SE4

Pictures: thanks to Wikmedia Commons and Google

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