Dear Editor….

Dear Editor,

Old Blarney – In Focus What a joy it has been to receive from its Honorary Editor, John Mulcahy, and to study the new photo-journal, Old Blarney – In Focus, May 2017. This, the 5th photo-journal published by the Blarney and District Historical Society, complements its ten Old Blarney scholarly journals. Contributing members of the Society, its Publication Committee (Mrs Anne Byrne, Professor Chris Synnott, Society Chairman Liam O’Brien and Brian Gabriel), and its Hon. Editor, John A. Mulcahy of Whitechurch, are to be congratulated on a very fine addition to social history. I hope Muskerry News readers will enjoy my short tribute that follows – that of a keen student and lover of Irish history from the opposite side of the planet! As John Mulcahy says in his Introduction, “The village itself is the star of the show”. What do I, the faraway reader, see as the village of Blarney? It is the people in that landscape and geographical region and it is the built environment of 250 years. You, the creators, have brought Blarney and its people into clear focus and have given life and energy to their story, your story, in a beautiful and very rich historical record. We see all age groups, from a baby to a centenarian. There are families and long-term friendship groups. The President of the Republic of Ireland, politicians and civic leaders, clergy and teachers are found among their people. Every aspect of community life takes its bow, centre stage. Changes over time and challenging events are faced, but the people of Blarney themselves have ensured that this is a book of celebration. Congratulations to all!

Wendy Dick, TPTC, BA, MA, PhD, of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.