On Sunday last 22nd August 2010, visitors flocked in their thousands to the stunning surroundings of St. Mary’s College Gardens in Youghal for the 4th Annual Youghal Medieval Festival. Events were planned to coincide with The Irish Walled Towns Network celebrations of National Heritage Week.
Photo: Michael Hussey www.youghalonline.com| Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Official figures on the day saw in excess of 8,000 people visit the free annual event over the course of the day, a record number for the event. The glorious sunshine made the inclement weather of the event in 2009 a distant memory!
Celebrations kicked off at 12.00 pm where the ‘Medieval Village’ played host to an abundance of performers, guests and festival goers all of whom came out in support of the event. The renowned ‘Freelance Knights of Redemption’ from Co. Cavan undertook a full fighting and weaponry display while elsewhere in the Medieval encampment visitors were mesmerised by the archery display and huddled around the roasting ‘lamb on the spit’ to observe the wonderful styles of medieval cookery.
This year the ‘Kids Kingdom’ played host to some of the best activities seen at the festival to date. The ‘Mumbo Jumbo Circus Workshop’ was a flurry of excitement and activity as kids of all ages learned how to stilt walk or ride a unicycle. The bouncy castle area was a major attraction as children braved the obstacle course over and over again.
This year the ‘Kids Kingdom’ saw the re-introduction of traditional arts & crafts fun. Speaking on behalf of the organising committee Catherine Desmond said: “Parents were delighted with the concept of ‘back to basics’ fun. Children were able to get involved and create their own Medieval Hats and Shields which they could then wear and bring home as a souvenir. Each year the committee tries to incorporate a good balance of fun, education and heritage into the festival and I think it’s fair to say that we achieved just that. Not only did we organise a ‘FREE FAMILY EVENT’ but we also reopened the historic quarter of Youghal which has seen a huge facelift over the last few years”, commented Catherine.
This year more quality food and craft stalls only added to the electric atmosphere of the gardens in ‘Maid Marion’s Food & Craft Fair’. Traders recreated the colourful atmosphere of a noisy Medieval Marketplace and visitors were given the chance to purchase unique gifts and top quality food produce ranging from homemade ice – cream to wood-fired pizza.
The ‘bandstand area’ featured lively performances from local band ‘Rannach’ followed by local favourites ‘Redmond & John’ culminating with the Youghal Pipe Band. Community Radio Youghal was of course on hand throughout the entire day to report on proceedings throughout the afternoon.
Clodagh Mahon of Youghal Heritage said: “The event was a tremendous success and the support we’ve seen from the business community in the town deserves a huge acknowledgement. We received some fantastic spot prizes for our raffle and I would like to give them a big thank you on behalf of the committee. I would also like to take the opportunity to thank our many hard working volunteers who worked tirelessly before, during and after the event. Festivals like these rely heavily on volunteers and it’s great to see such community spirit”.
Youghal Medieval Festival was organised by The Youghal Municipal Heritage Committee and was funded by the Heritage Council of Ireland and Youghal Town Council.
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Key to photographs
91 Youghal Town Cryer Cliff Winser with Noel Curtin and sons Jack and Robbie
105 William and Morgan Joyce with ‘Captain Jack’ Kieran Groeger
107 Paula, TJ and Amy Rusk, Teresa and Sean Slattery with Mayor of Youghal Mary Linehan Foley
110 Ann marie Roe, Patrice Desmond and Stacey O’Leary
112 Carmel Murphy from Limerick
113 Derek Kenefick fundraising for the Haven for Haiti building programme
119 Susan and Shane Morgan with facepainter Clara Foley
120 Tina Molloy with her children enjoying the free festival
122 Rebecca Hanna and Coran McCarthy with doggy Kerry at the Medieval Festival
138 Tilly McCarthy and Patrick Walsh
140 Sean Donovan and Ann Power
159 Michelle Hennessy, Sheila Whyte and Sandra McLellan and child
184 James and Alavoine from Cork
187 Seth Lewis and Viki Nagy
190 Mervyn Scott and Noel Cronin from Youghal local radio CRYIssued by:
Youghal Heritage Committee
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