The late Philomena Barry was honoured when a road was named in her honour at a ceremony in her native Mullaghmore on Friday last.
Philomena Barry honoured at road naming cermony
Philomena passed away in October 2019 and the ceremony was held days before the centenary of her birth.
The large attendance included Philomena’s sons John and Patrick, clergy Fr Christy McHugh, Canon Noel Regan and Deacon Frank McGuinness, and a wide circle of neighbours and friends.
Sligo County Council was represented by the Chair of the Sligo-Drumcliffe Municipal District Councillor Tom Fox and Councillors Declan Bree, Dónal Gilroy, Thomas Healy, Rosaleen O’Grady and Thomas Walsh.
In his address, Councillor Fox said ‘The proposal to name this road in honour of the late Philomena Barry was brought to Sligo County Council's Placenames Committee by Councillor Rosaleen O’Grady and Councillor Declan Bree, and their recommendation was formally approved by the Council at its May meeting. It was a suggestion that was met with widespread approval.
This is not solely a family occasion, it is a community celebration to honour an outstanding individual and her contribution to this area. In many respects, the life story of Philomena Barry is the social history of Mullaghmore for much of the 20th Century, she had a long and active life, and it fitting that we convene today in her honour. It is an opportunity to reflect on this contribution, to place it in the context of this community's history, and by virtue of this ceremony, preserve her memory for future generations Sligo County Council is honoured to be associated with this ceremony, and we join with the Barry family and the people of Mullaghmore in celebrating Philomena Barry's life and legacy.’
John Barry recalled the history of her mother’s family and her long association with Mullaghmore; ‘My mother’s first connection to Mullaghmore was through her great-grandfather, Alexander Lockhart who came here to Mullaghmore in 1820 at the formation of the village. Alexander was born in Edinburgh and was sent here by Lord Palmerston. When he came to Mullaghmore, he resided at the White House which later became part of the Classiebawn Estate. He came to advise and instruct the people how to improve their land through drainage and how to yield good crops from poor land. In 1834 Alexander married Catherine Scanlon. They had three children, one of whom Joseph was my mother’s grandfather. Joseph married Sarah McGuinness from Manorhamilton and their son, John, my mother’s father was born in Mullaghmore in 1872. The Lockhart Family eventually moved to Kilcat House in Grange after the completion of Classiebawn Castle where our mother was born on the 6th August 1922 to John Lockhart and Mary Ellen Currid.
Our grandfather Patrick Barry was born here in 1868. He served 22 years in the American Navy and took part in the Spanish-American War of 1898. He inherited his mother’s home place and built the house which is our home to this very day. At that time the house was the only one at the top of the lane and hence the name Barry’s Lane. Ironically, our mother married Patrick Barry from Mullaghmore and came to reside here in 1956 where her ancestors had come 136 years previously.
Our mother often said how she loved the house and its wonderful setting. She made the house a home where the door was always open, welcoming the stranger as well as her neighbours and friends. The table was set and tea was made for one and all. Our mother loved being in touch with people and was always on hand to support, comfort and help those in need. The best legacy our mother has left to us is the example of kindness we can show to others.’