Sunday, August 7, 2011

Mills and Millers of Ireland

On Sunday 26th June the Heritage Centre hosted a group of visitors from the Society of Mills and Millers of Ireland. The society was formed in 2001 with the intention of encouraging and assisting in the preservation and appreciation of mills as part of the industrial, architectural and landscape heritage of this island. The significance of Portlaw and the Malcomsons, as displayed in the historical material at our Heritage Centre, attracted the group and motivated them to visit our village. The visitors arrived at 11am and were greeted by Chairman of the Heritage Centre, Ger Crotty, and committee members Willie Power and Owen Coffey. Following a brief introduction the group left for the old industrial complex and were escorted through the site by Willie Power and owner Michael O’Shea. They were fascinated with the remains of the old cotton mill, the location of the mill wheels and the layout of the mill. Coming from many diverse backgrounds and traditions they were equally impressed with the social structure created by the Malcomsons around the industrial complex. Following the tour the visitors met at the Heritage Centre and then adjourned to the Cotton Mill for refreshments before moving on to Dunhill Eco-Park. The group had spent Saturday in Kilmacthomas visiting Flahavans Mill and some water mills in the area. Mills and Millers were the third group to visit in as many weeks and the committee are delighted with the response and interest being generated in our heritage.

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