“Every single man woman and child getting on the bus that spring morning was heartbroken”

The names of the families from the Cregganbawn area who went to Castlepollard are as follows:

Mike Corrigan (R.I.P.) Athlone,

Peter Kilcoyne (R.I.P.) Shrawee,

Johnny Grady (R.I.P) Shrawee,

Austin Grady (R.I.P.) Shrawee,

Pat Joe Kilcoyne Woodfield,

John Wallace (R.I.P) Woodfield,

Tommy Needham (R.I.P) Cregganbawn,

Paddy Burke (R.I.P.) Derryheigh.

All of these families went to Castlepollard in March 1955 because there wasn’t enough land to support the families. Eight cattle wagons came to transport the livestock there. All the neighbour’s helped load the bus and cattle wagons. Mr. Flanagan, county engineer for whom some of the men worked, was there to say goodbye. He thanked the people who had worked for him for many years, as council workers building and repairing roads.

Every single man, woman and child getting on the bus that spring morning was heartbroken. When the bus was passing Louisburgh the people wanted the bus to stop so they could get off and say goodbye to their friends there. The bus wouldn’t stop. The townspeople were all out to wave “goodbye”.

In their new homes in Castlepollard the land commission had fires down to welcome them. The people helped them to plough the land and settle into their new farms. It took the Mayo people a long time to settle in Castlepollard. When the Mayo children started school there, the local children called them “The Mayo Tinkers”. They eventually made friends.

None of the families ever came back to stay; they only came for a visit. All families got an option to go. Those who left, their land was divided among those who remained.

Since then there has been regular contact and several reunions between the Castlepollard and Cregganbawn people.

Interviewer: Marie Armstrong

Interviewee: Paddy Armstrong

No Comments

Start the ball rolling by posting a comment on this page!

Add a comment about this page

Your email address will not be published.