Ballina Lions Club are proud to announce details of the Ballina Lions Club Famine Exhibition which runs at the Ballina Civic Offices until 22 March 2019. The exhibition was launched by Minister Michael Ring on Saturday 20th October.
The Lions Club motto is “We Serve” and they do this in many ways from raising much needed cash for local charities to hosting social outings for local people in need (Christmas Day Dinner, Senior Citizens/Careers holidays, Annual Special Needs Party and Simon Day out) to health awareness projects and seminars to name but a few. Their latest project of hosting an Irish Potato Famine Exhibition builds on their value to “serve our community” by providing a deeply moving and educational account of this devastating period in Irish history.
The exhibition is located in the exhibition space within the Council Civic Offices at Dillon Terrace in Ballina allowing people to experience this valuable resource. The exhibition itself consists of a series of sequentially numbered wall panels, a basket containing 14 pounds of potatoes and a 15-minute documentary film which charts the course of the Famine. There will be a multitude of famine memorabilia and artefacts on display.
The story begins with the state of Ireland on the eve of the Famine, the appalling poverty of the labourer in stark contrast to the extreme wealth of the landed gentry. It then leads us through the arrival of potato blight in Ireland, the inadequacy of British Government Relief Efforts and the devastating impact it had on life and families in Ireland while detailing evictions, the establishment of Soup Kitchens and Workhouses, evictions, emigration and private relief efforts.
The exhibition is designed to be highly visual, light on text and easy to understand. It takes approximately one hour to absorb the experience. We see this exhibition as being very beneficial to local people interested in our history, visiting tourists and students in the Connaught region and beyond. The Lions club have engaged with local volunteer, business, educational and tourism groups to ensure that as many people as possible can experience and benefit from it.
Until now, the exhibition has been located on the top floor of the St. Stephen’s Green Shopping Centre in Dublin and had a second run there. Reviews have been consistently good (“Excellent Exhibition! Its simplicity and starkness emphasise the rawness and cruelty of this terrible tragedy in Irish history. The video gave a clear, depiction of the Famine. Well worth visiting.”- TripAdvisor) and it is currently ranked as number 30 of almost 600 things to do in Dublin on TripAdvisor. This exhibition is an amazing opportunity for Ballina.
From October 22nd to November 3rd: 11am to 4pm Monday to Friday (closed from 1pm – 2pm) and Saturday 11am to 1pm
From November 5th – March 22nd: Monday, Wednesday, Friday 11am to 4pm (closed from 1pm – 2pm)
Schools Tours on Tuesdays & Thursdays from November 5th (advance booking required – further details will be distributed to schools in the area)
There is no entry fee but donations will be greatly appreciated
Donations will help with the cost of bringing the exhibition to Ballina and any money left over will go towards helping those in need locally.