Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Liberty Hall - Dublin

This is a 24 minute documentary on the Dublin building Liberty Hall.
The home of the Irish Transport & Workers Union (ITGWU
) now SIPTU.
It was broadcast on RTE1 on the 11th of May 2009.
made by Paddy Cahill.

"Oh! then tell me Sean O'Farrell
where the gathering is to be?"
"At the oul spot by the river that's
well known to you and me ...."

This beautiful verse from "Rising of the moon" by John Keegan Casey, to commemorate the rebellion of 1798, may have inspired Sean O'Casey to lovingly refer to Liberty Hall the headquarters of the Irish Transport & General Workers Union, as "the oul spot on the river".

Irish Labour & Working Class History Web Site

The old Northumberland Hotel (Duke of Northumberland was former Lord Lieutenant of Ireland) in Beresford Place, Dublin was acquired by the ITGWU in 1911 and in 1914 purchased for the sum of £3,500, renaming it Liberty Hall.
In 1916, the Irish Proclamation of Independence was printed (by Christopher Brady) in the basement and James Connolly led the Irish Citizen Army and volunteers from the Hall to commence the Easter Rising of 1916.
The British gunship Helga moored in the Liffey reduced the Hall to ruins.
By the 1950's Liberty Hall had become so neglected that it was agreed to established a fund to build a new Liberty Hall.

The New Liberty Hall opened on May Day 1965.