Beechmount Remembers

A new board has been mounted in AMCOMRI Street for the fortieth anniversary of the 1981 hunger strike, with photographs from the area in the background, including the Revolution mural at the bottom of Beechmount Avenue in 1996-1997.

“Everyone, Republican or otherwise, has their own particular part to play. No part is too great or too small, no one is too old or too young to do something.”

Click and click again to enlarge (to 1200 x 900)
Copyright © 2021 Extramural Activity
Camera Settings: f2.4, 1/176, ISO 16, full size 4032 x 3024

Click and click again to enlarge (to full size)
Copyright © 2021 Extramural Activity
Camera Settings: f4.4, 1/500, ISO 80, full size 1501 x 1124
X08336 [X08332] X08331

The Desire For Freedom

The Falls Commemoration Committee (Fb) organises an annual commemoration for IRA D company volunteers from Divis and the lower Falls (as well as special events for the fiftieth anniversary of the Falls Curfew in 2020). The fourteen local volunteers are portrayed in a group above St Peter’s. They include the five volunteers who died in 1972 are were depicted in a mural previously at this spot.

“‘They won’t break me because the desire for [freedom and the] freedom of the Irish people is in my heart. The day will dawn when all the people of Ireland will have the desire for freedom to show. It is then that we will see the rising of the moon’ – Bobby Sands [March 17th, 1981]” Originally in Irish: “Ní bhrisfidh siad mé mar tá an fonn saoirse, agus saoirse mhuintir na hEireann, i mo chroí. Tiocfaidh lá éigin nuair a bheidh an fonn saoirse seo le taispeáint ag daoine go léir na hEireann. Ansin tchífidh muid éirí na gealaí.”

Click and click again to enlarge (to 1200 x 1020)
Copyright © 2021 Extramural Activity
Camera Settings: f4.7, 1/400, ISO 80, full size 4320 x 3672
X08330

Aontacht Lenár Linn

“Am le haontacht na hÉireann” [Time for Irish unity]. Between stints in prison in 1976, Bobby Sands carried a green harp flag – symbol of Ireland and in particular of the United Irishmen – in an August march to protest the withdrawal of political status (Gérard Harlay/Bobby Sands Trust). He is shown here marching under the #TimeForUnity message on Sliabh Dubh in the campaign for a border poll and Irish unity “lenár linn”/”in our time” (Fb | tw).

See also: Reifreann Anois | Time For Irish Unity

Click and click again to enlarge (to 1200 x 785)
Copyright © 2021 Extramural Activity
Camera Settings: f4, 1/500, ISO 80, full size 4896 x 3204
X08329

For Twinbrook

In 2019, images of Bobby Sands before his (second and final) arrest and imprisonment were rediscovered in the collection of French photographer Gérard Harlay. Sands was serving as a flag-bearer in an August 1976 march from the Busy Bee to Dunville Park to protest the withdrawal of political status. (For some of Harlay’s images, see Bobby Sands Trust.) This new mural in his home area of Twinbrook copies one of the images (though presents him as carrying a Tricolour rather than a harp) along with protesters protesting for “Public transport for Twinbrook now” and “Social housing for Twinbrook now”.

See also: Comóradh 40 Stailc Ocrais

Click and click again to enlarge (to 1500 x 948)
Copyright © 2021 Extramural Activity
Camera Settings: f5, 1/160, ISO 100, full size 4956 x 3132

Click and click again to enlarge (to 1600 796)
Copyright © 2021 Extramural Activity
Camera Settings: f5, 1/125, ISO 100, full size 5280 x 2628

Click and click again to enlarge (to 1100 x 1184)
Copyright © 2021 Extramural Activity
Camera Settings: f5, 1/200, ISO 100, full size 4392 x 3468
X08000 X07999 [X08001] [X08002] X08003 MD ML our revenge will be the laughter of our children

Our Nation As A Whole

Mairéad Farrell (on the right of the image above) was arrested for planting a bomb at a hotel in Dunmurry in April 1976, one month after Special Category Status for republican prisoners had been revoked. Kieran Nugent (on the left) began the “blanket” protest in September that year and Farrell was the first person to join the protest, when she arrived in Armagh women’s prison to begin her fourteen year sentence. She later took up a dirty protest and joined the 1980 hunger strike. She stood for election in 1981 (in Cork), but, unlike “Óglach Bobby Sands, MP for Fermanagh and South Tyrone”, was not successful. (WP)

“I am oppressed as a woman and I am oppressed as an Irish person. Everyone in this country is oppressed and yet we can only end our oppression as women if we end the oppression of our nation as a whole.” Máiread [sic] Farrell

For the other pieces shown in the wide shot, below, see The Proclamation | All Our Dead | Easter Week 1916 (and then England, The Never Failing Source Of All Our Political Evils and The Old IRA).

Click and click again to enlarge (to 1600 x 1200)
Copyright © 2021 Extramural Activity
Camera Settings: f4.2, 1/80, ISO 125, full size 4896 x 3672

Click and click again to enlarge (to 1600 x 1200)
Copyright © 2021 Extramural Activity
Camera Settings: f3.6, 1/80, ISO 100, full size 4896 x 3672
X07823 X07821 Ardilea “They may hold our bodies in the most inhumane condition – But while our minds remain free our victory is assured.” Óglach Bobby Sands, MP for Fermanagh and South Tyrone, died on the 5th of May 1981 after 66 days on Hunger Strike.

The Rising Of The Moon

“End British internment: Strip searching, controlled movement, isolation.” This Saoradh/éistigí/IRPWA board in Central Drive, Creggan, Derry, uses the words of Bobby Sands to put current political prisoners in parallel with the blanket protest and hunger strikes. The quote is an English translation from the final day of Sands’s hunger strike diary, March 17thMura bhfuil siad in inmhe an fonn saoirse a scriosadh, ní bheadh siad in inmhe tú féin a bhriseadh. Ní bhrisfidh siad mé mar tá an fonn saoirse, agus saoirse mhuintir na hEireann, i mo chroí. Tiocfaidh lá éigin nuair a bheidh an fonn saoirse seo le taispeáint ag daoine go léir na hEireann. Ansin chífidh muid éirí na gealaí.” = “If they aren’t able to destroy to the desire for freedom, they won’t break you. They won’t break me because the desire for freedom, and the freedom of the Irish people, is is my heart. The day will dawn when all the people of Ireland will have the desire for freedom to show. It is then we’ll see the rising of the moon.” 
Click to enlarge (to 1900 x 1342)
Copyright © 2018 Extramural Activity
Camera Settings: f4.3, 1/200, ISO 80, full size 4618 x 3262
text: X06383

Cairde Agus Comrádaithe

“Friends and comrades” – IRA volunteers Brendan Hughes (“The Dark”) and Bobby Sands were leaders of the 1980 and 1981 hunger strikes, respectively. Hughes survived when the first strike was called off after 53 days; Sands died in the ’81 strike after 66 days of fasting. “IRPWA” is the Irish Republican Prisoners’ Welfare Association (Fb | tw); Saoradh (web | tw) is a hard-line left-wing republican party.
The mural to the left shows Palestinian double-amputee Saber Al-Ashkar, protesting as part of the Great March Of Return.
Click to enlarge (to full size)
Copyright © 2018 Extramural Activity
Camera Settings: f8, 1/50, ISO 400, full size 2904 x 2232
Click to enlarge (to 2400 x 1600)
Copyright © 2018 Extramural Activity
Camera Settings: f8, 1/60, ISO 200, full size 5616 x 3744
text: X06304 [X06317] [X06223] X06322

The Proclamation

Robert Ballagh’s 1916 Proclamation was first painted as a mural by Mo Chara Kelly and Risteard Ó Mhurchú in 1991 for the 75th anniversary of the Easter Rising (see Cáisc 1916 which also contains the Ballagh piece). That version stood for ten years on the Whiterock Road. It has reproduced again in Ard An Lao above the hunger strikers, after the removal of several plaques (see All Our Dead). “With special thanks to Hugo Óg Wilkinson”.
Click to enlarge (to 2400 x 1800)
Copyright © 2018 Extramural Activity
Camera Settings: f3.7, 1/800, ISO 80, full size 4896 x 3672
text: X06110 our revenge will be let there be no bitterness

Stormont Must Go

04032-2017-02-12-stormont-must-go
New political party Saoradh (Fb | Tw) is advocating a boycott of the upcoming (March 2nd) Stormont election, claiming that Stormont espouses “the co-dependent ideologies of imperialism, sectarianism and capitalism”. The tarp shown above lists various problems and scandals (“Nepostism, fraud, corruption, phantom community groups, NAMA, sectarianism, jobs for the boys, Red Sky, RHI scandal”) and evokes the spirit of 1981 hunger striker Bobby Sands: “Everyone Republican or otherwise has their Part to Play.” Also visible are a board celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Easter Rising (see versions in Andersonstown
Ardoyne | St James), an éirígí mural featuring Patrick Pearse, and a call for the release of the Craigavon Two (previously featured).
Click and click again to enlarge (to 3100 x 2146)
Copyright © 2017 Extramural Activity
Camera Settings: f5, 1/125, ISO 400, full size 5256 x 3639
text: X04032 tír gan teanga tír gan anam athshealbhaigí an phoblacht

Unsung Heroes

04026-2017-02-07-beechmountmem-unsung-heroes
“In memory of the all the unsung heroes off [sic] this area who’s [sic] hardship, sacrifice and support during this struggle for Irish freedom will never be forgotten by the Belfast Brigade óglaigh na h-éireann.” The plaque depicts the work of print-makers (“Smash H-Block Armagh”), marchers carrying portraits of hunger strikers (“Mid Falls supports the women of Armagh”), bin-lid rattlers, and muralists (the mural shown is Free Ireland, which was at the bottom of Beechmount Avenue).
Previous work from Hugh Clawson: The Lark And The Bin Lid | Conway Mill
Click and click again to enlarge (to full size)
Copyright © 2017 Extramural Activity
Camera Settings: f5, 1/30, ISO 400, full size 3656 x 2344
04025-2017-02-07-beechmountmem-unsung-heroes-w
Click and click again to enlarge (to full size)
Copyright © 2017 Extramural Activity
Camera Settings: f4.5, 1/30, ISO 400, full size 2592 x 3780
text: X04026 X04025