They Cannot Break Our Spirit

“They cannot or never will break our spirit … Tiocfaidh ár lá” – Bobby Sands. For the 30th anniversary of the 1981 hunger strike in which ten republican prisoners died in the H Blocks.

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I’m Not A Criminal

When the mural to “the first blanketman” Kieran Nugent mural (in the Rock streets) was re-done in February 2011, it was initially framed with a terrific selection of posters from the period, many of them from continental Europe, about Kieran, the blanket protest, and hunger striker.
“I’m not a criminal. The Brits will have to nail prison clothes to my back.” For the previous mural, and some background about Nugent going “on the blanket”, see M02550.
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text: X00498 X05088 X05089 [X05090] X05091 [X05092]

Live Free!

Joe Cahill joined the Fianna in 1937 and was involved in the republican movement from then until his death in 2004, including being in Tom Williams’s company in 1942 and later a founder member and Chief of Staff of the Provisional IRA. In the centre of the image he is at the end of the table at the August 13, 1971, press conference to comment on the introduction of internment (CAIN). He is honoured in the mural above alongside his brothers Tom and Frank Cahill. (Pat O’Hare is painted between Tom and Frank.)

In the top left are small boards with portraits of Ned Maguire Snr, Ned Maguire Jnr, Sam Holden, Dal Delaey, Rita McParland, Paddy Meenan, Paddy Corrigan, Sean Wallace, John Petticrew, Alex Crowe.

“Never will they label our liberation struggle as criminal – Bobby Sands [March 6th Journal].”

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Let There Be No Bitterness

Michael Gaughan’s final message included the line “Let there be no bitterness on my behalf, but a determination to achieve the new Ireland for which I gladly die” which is loosely quoted in this hunger strikers Ardilea Close (in the Bone) mural. He is buried with Frank Stagg in Leigue Cemetery, Ballina (WP). The mural has been added behind the plaque to the hunger strikers in the middle-right: “Erected by the Olpark 1981 Committee. In proud and loving memories fo ten young Republicans who gave their lives during the 1981 hunger-strike in the H.Blocks of Long Kesh. No greater love than a man lay down his life for his friends.”
Copyright © 2010 Extramural Activity
text: X00354