Ken Loach to film ‘Jimmy’s Hall’ in Leitrim this summer

Ken LoachThe only Irishman ever to be deported by the Irish Government – Jim Gralton, the famous Leitrim socialist – will form the subject of Ken Loach’s new film, set to start filming in Leitrim this summer, with funding by the Irish Film Board.

The film will be set a decade after the events of Mr Loach’s last Irish historical drama ‘The Wind that Shakes the Barley’ – about the Irish War of Independence and Civil War – which won the Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival in 2006.

Produced by Sixteen Films’ Rebecca O’Brien and Element Pictures, ‘Jimmy’s Hall’ will be based on a screenplay by Mr Loach and Paul Laverty – inspired by Donal O’Kelly’s play ‘Jimmy Gralton’s Dancehall’.

Deported in 1933 by de Valera’s Government for his alleged communist sympathies, Jimmy Gralton was politically active during the War of Independence and, in the 1920s, erected a meeting hall on his parents’ land – the ‘Pearse-Connolly Hall in honour of the Socialist and Republican leaders of 1916’.

This hall became a focal point for Gralton’s political activities, which provoked the opposition of local clergy, who became determined to have him arrested.

In the years that followed, Gralton became a member of the Revolutionary Workers Group, spoke at anti-eviction meetings and meetings of the National Unemployed Movement.
He was a high-profile casualty of the ‘Red Scare’ that swept through Ireland during the January 1933 general election, which resulted in the new Fianna Fáil Government issuing Gralton’s deportation order as ‘an undesirable alien’.

Gralton lived out the rest of his days in the US, joining the American Labour Movement and running as a candidate for the Communist Party in the Borough elections in Manhattan before his death in New York in 1945.

Mr Loach and his production team visited Leitrim last week to scout filming locations for the upcoming shoot.

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International Brigades Plaque Unveiling – Inchicore – Dublin – Saturday 4th May

Saturday 4th May @ 4:00pm, at Senan Court, 109 Emmet Road, Inchicore, Dublin 8 (opposite Bulfin Road).

International Brigades Plaque Unveiling - Inchicore - Dublin - Saturday 4th MayThe Inchicore Friends of the International Brigades are erecting a plaque to the memory of six local men who went to Spain to defend the Spanish Republic against the military coup of July 1936.

Seen by many as the first act of the Second World War, the Spanish conflict pitted the majority of Spaniards and their democratically-elected government against their own military, backed by troops, aviation and materiel from Hitler’s Germany and Mussolini’s Italy. A non-intervention pact arranged between the European democracies forced the Spanish government to rely on the assistance of the Soviet Union, however tensions between the disparate elements supporting the government and increasing military assistance from international fascism and global capital ensured the victory of Franco’s armies and the subjection of the Spanish people. The repression continued until the dictator’s death in 1975.

Inchicore is unusual because of its development around the railway works and for the multiplicity of religious faiths (and none) represented in its workforce. Perhaps as a result of this mixture of socialism and non-conformity, Inchicore had a unique concentration of volunteers in the ranks of the International Brigades. Of the six men commemorated, two came from a protestant background and all had republican or communist connections. Three died in Spain and one survivor was to write perhaps the most significant first-hand account of the early fighting (Joe Monks, With the Reds in Andulusia, London, 1985).

Those being commemorated are…

Tony Fox (1914-28.12.1936). From Goldenbridge Avenue, Fox was a member of A. Coy., 4th Batt., Dublin Brigade, IRA and was with the first organised detachment of Irish volunteers to join the International Brigades. He crossed the Pyrenees with Frank Ryan and his school friend and neighbour Mick May on 15 December 1936 and was killed in action at Lopera on the Córdoba front less than two weeks later. Fox had just finished dressing the wounds of two friends, John Gough and Seamus Cummings, when he himself was fatally wounded. His body was never recovered.

Mick May (1916-28.12.1936). Michael May from Connolly Avenue was also a member of Fox’s IRA unit. He was additionally a member of the Communist Party of Ireland. He died close to Tony Fox at Lopera on 28 December 1936 and was last seen alive, single-handedly covering the retreat of comrades, armed with a rifle.

Liam ‘Bill’ McGregor (d. 22.09.1938). McGregor was the Dublin secretary of the Communist Party of Ireland and the son of Esther McGregor, president of the Municipal Tenants’ Association. He attended the Lenin International School in Moscow and on his return volunteered to fight in Spain. He was killed on the very last day the XV Brigade saw action on the Ebro front, alongside fellow Dubliner Jack Nalty.

Joe Monks (1915-1988). Joe Monks came from Park Street and went to school in James’s Street with Tony Fox and Mick May. A member of the Communist Party he was one of the initial volunteers along with his two school friends. He was one of the defenders of Connolly House, headquarters of the Revolutionary Workers’ Group (forerunner of the Communist Party of Ireland) when it was attacked in March 1933 by a hymn-singing mob. Author of With the Reds in Andulusia, Monks was wounded in the chest at Lopera but was to see further action in March 1937 at the little known battle of Almadén. He was repatriated later in 1937 and was active with the Republican Congress before immigrating to the UK where he remained involved in radical politics until his death in 1988.

Paddy McElroy (b.1911). Paddy McElroy came from 20 Nash Street. His brother Christopher had taken part in the 1916 Rising. A mechanic with the TE&FU, he joined the XV International Brigade on 7 January 1937 and was seriously wounded at the battle of Jarama outside Madrid in February. He was repatriated on account of his wounds and after a brief stay in Dublin he appeared again in Cairo in 1939. Returning to Liverpool via Durban, he was curiously listed as a government official with an address in Southampton. He was subsequently involved in a wages hold-up at Amiens Street in March 1943 and was defended by Sean MacBride. From this point onwards McElroy disappears from the historical record.

Bill Scott (1908-1980). Bill Scott came from Ring Street and was a member of the Communist Party of Ireland. One of the Irish Citizen Army’s earliest recruits was his father, William Scott, a member of the Church of Ireland and an activist in the Bricklayers’ Trade Union. During the 1916 Rising, Scott fought alongside William Partridge in the College of Surgeons garrison, under the command of Michael Mallin and his deputy Constance Markievicz. His son was possibly the very first Irish International Brigade volunteer to fight in defence of the Spanish Republic, finding himself in Barcelona at the Workers’ Olympics when the coup broke out. He was elected political commissar for the English Tom Mann Centuria in September 1936, before joining with the German Thaelmann Battalion in the defence of Madrid. Bill went back to Ireland where he was withdrawn as a CPI candidate in a Dublin by election in favour of Frank Ryan. He returned to Spain with Ryan and received a serious leg wound and was sent back to England. Disillusioned with the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact, he left the CP for a period before re-joining in 1941. He then became a member of the Essential Construction Corps, building infrastructure throughout the UK. After the war he continued his trades union activities until his death in 1980.

The Inchicore Friends of the International Brigades is a local group dedicated to remembering those who volunteered to defend the Spanish Republic against the forces of international fascism and capital. As part of the Friends of the International Brigades in Ireland (FIBI), the group is affiliated with the International Brigades Memorial Trust. Future projects include the erection of a memorial to Jim Prendergast in Temple Bar in September 2013 and the continuation of a second-level schools’ essay competition, launched successfully in 2012.

For more information please contact Franc Myles at 086 8537281 or

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Tadhg Barry Film – Saturday, 4th May – Triskel Arts Centre, Cork City

Saturday, 4th May at 2.00 p.m. in the Triskel Arts Centre, Cork City.

Using British Pathe film, historical photgraphs and documents an hour long documentary on the life of Cork trade union leader, socialist and republican fighter, Tadhg Barry, will be shown in Cork on 4th May.

Tadhg Barry Film - Saturday, 4th May - Triskel Arts Centre, Cork CityThe film covers his life from his birth place on the north side of Cork City, to his early years in the work force and his initial leap into journalism, and from there to his political enlightenment and work with the ITGWU, James Connolly and James Larkin to re-build the union in Cork and to fight for Irish Freedom.

Barry was active in the 1916 Rising and the film covers his transformation from military to political activist when he became an Alderman of the First Republican Council in Cork and Secretary of the ITGWU James Connolly memorial branch.

Jailed on several occasions, the film of Barry’s life also incorporates the burning of Cork and his final arrest and transfer without trial to Ballykinlar internment camp in county Down where he started the first ever Trades Council in a prison environment.

He was shot through the heart while waving good bye to fellow prisons sent out on release just three weeks before a general amnesty in 1921.

Footage in the film shows how Michael Collins left the ‘Treaty’ talks to attend his funeral.

Among the contributors to the to the film are SIPTU General Secretary, Joe O’Flynn, Tadhg Barry Galvin, great grandnephew of the late Tadhg Barry, Brenda Corcoran and other family members, Gerry White, Quarter Master and Historian with the Southern Command in Collins Barracks Cork and his biographer Dr. Donal O’Driscoill, the School of History, UCC.

The film is a joint production between the Cork Council of Trade Unions and Framework Films produced by SIPTU organiser, Trevor Quinn, Eddie Noonan and Emma Bowell.

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International Brigades Mural Unveiling in Belfast

The Peter Daly Society would like to thank Teach na Fáilte for their invitation and hospitality at the recently unveiled mural to the International Brigades.

The mural depicted the image of the republican congress contingent who attempted to take part in the 1934 Bodenstown Commemoration but was attacked by nationalist elements, these working class socialists came from both the nationalist and loyalist areas of Belfast, most of these brave men made the supreme sacrifice in Spain making a heroic stand against fascism, they should never be forgotten.

No Pasaran

Click to view larger images

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Peter Daly Website – Spanish Translation

Peter Daly Website - Spanish TranslationThe Peter Daly Society/La Sociedad Peter Daly are pleased to announce that selected sections of the Peter Daly website have now been translated into Spanish. The sections are…

Inicio (Home Page)

Conmemoración de Peter Daly

La Vida de Peter Daly (Life of Peter Daly)

De Monageer a España – La historia de Peter Daly

Contacto (Contact)

La Sociedad Peter Daly

The remainder of the website will continue to be available in Spanish via Google Translate.

The Peter Daly Society/La Sociedad Peter Daly would like to thank Sean Edwards for providing the Spanish translation.

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Mural Unveiling in Belfast – Saturday 20th April 2013

Mural Unveiling in Belfast - Saturday 20th April 2013Teach na Fáilte the Republican Socialist Ex-Prisoners Support Group will be unveiling a Mural in Belfast in memory of the Belfast men who fought against Fascism with the XV International Brigade in the Spanish Civil War [1936-1939]. The Mural is situated on the International Wall on Northumberland Street adjacent to the Peace Line.

As this is the 77TH anniversary of the Spanish Civil War, Teach na Fáilte feel that it is important that these men should be remembered as people from both the Nationalist and Unionist tradition bonded together by ideology, united across the sectarian boundaries in a common cause of democracy embodied in working class politics.

The men who volunteered to fight in Spain against Fascism are part of our working class history and no one community has the monopoly on its remembrance so the main objective is to forge a common bond and establish a sense of pride in their endeavours and whose ideology knew no sectarian barriers.

Belfast during that period had its own share of trouble with a background of Outdoor Relief Riots, Unemployment and Depression but these issues became a unifying factor with these Volunteers as they made the decision to go to Spain to fight Fascism. Unbeknown to them at the time, their stand was to be widely recognised and believed to be the opening shots to The Second World War.

This Mural is just another Project that Teach na Fáilte, who along with other Groups, have been involved in around the Spanish Civil War with the erection of marble plaques to volunteers from both sides of the community followed by Memorial Lectures on their lives and ideals. Members of Tnf have also travelled to the Battlefield at Jarama outside Madrid and met with some surviving Brigadistas from other countries.

Teach na Fáilte have had a specially designed badge to commemorate the unveiling of the Mural and will have a buffet laid on afterwards to accommodate all those attending.

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Book Launch – Physical Resistance: A Hundred Years of Anti-Fascism

An activists’ history of the collective anti-fascist struggle in Britain

Physical Resistance: A Hundred Years of Anti-FascismLarge-scale confrontations, disruption of meetings, sabotage and street fighting have been part of the practice of anti-fascism from the early twentieth century until the twenty-first. Rarely endorsed by any political party, the use of collective bodily strength remains a strategy of activists working in alliances and coalitions against fascism.

In Physical Resistance famous battles against fascists, from the Olympia arena, Earls Court in 1934 and Cable Street in 1936 to Southall in 1978 and Bradford 2010, are told through the voices of participants. Anarchists, communists and socialists who belonged to a shifting series of anti-fascist organizations relate well-known events alongside many forgotten but significant episodes.

More information available at

4pm, Saturday, April 6th,
Connolly Books
43 East Essex Street
Dublin 2
Organised by Anti-Fascist Action.

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New LookLeft out now!

New LookLeft out now!LookLeft – Ireland’s leading magazine for progressive news, views and solutions – available in Easons stores and over 600 newsagents across the country – 48 pages for just €2/£1.50

Click here to find out where to get your copy.

In the latest issue of LookLeft:


1913 It’s importance then and now – historian BRIAN HANLEY discusses the events of 1913 and what they tell us about modern Ireland

Lockout Timeline – the events leading up to the Lockout and what happened

Lockout Events – calendar of some of the major events planned to commemorate the Lockout


No Left turn for Northern Ireland – PAUL DILLON speaks to some Northern Left activists on the problems facing progressive politics

Again across the oceans – DARA MCHUGH examines who are the victims and who profits from emigration from the Republic

Owen Jones Interview – KEVIN SQUIRES talks to the author of Chavs about the future of the Left

Securing the future of your home – Rising rents, less secure tenure and an unaccountable system is the future for Northern Irish public housing tenants, reports JUSTIN O’HAGAN

Save Our Forests – plans to sell off harvesting rights to State forests are an attack on the public good reports PADRAIG MANNION

Working Class: No one called that round here – CONOR MCCABE on why the Republic’s working class is right to be apathetic towards the demise of an uncaring State

History Marches On – the political theory of Eric Hobsbawm outlined by ULTÁN GILLEN

Meath raises the Red Flag – Seamus McDonagh of the Workers’ Party gives progressive voters a voice in the Meath East By-election

The Lions of Lisbon – ULTÁN GILLEN reports from the 19th Congress of the Portuguese Communist Party

The Abortion Rights Campaign – the struggle for reproductive rights.

CAHWT – KEVIN SQUIRES reports on the continuing battler against the household tax

ALSO: Mandate’s Fair Shops campaign, G8 Not Welcome, More TDs back the LookLeft stop former Ministers’ pensions campaign, the launch of Derry Antifa, Commemorating International Brigadista Frank Conroy


The LookLeft Debate: Unions and the Household Tax – The Workers’ Party’s James Coughlan and Socialist Party’s Mick O’Brien discuss

Austerity (Class War) is working – Eoghan O’Neill

Sideshows and circuses – the flags dispute – Brian McDermott

Women are paying for the recession – Stephanie Lord

Suicide Prevention – Donal O’Driscoll

The military adventures contiune – Padraig Mannion

Obits: Tony O’Reilly, Mike Dollard, Sean Redmond and James Stewart


Colm MacGeehin on the Children’s Referendum, the Stop the War Coalition, Post Office privatiSation


Irish Left Review, An introduction to the three volumes of Karl Marx’s Capital, Rising Expectations (and Rising Hell)


Inflammable Material – Sam McGrath on the career of Stiff Little Fingers

The Derry Sound – Kryton Son meets Barry Healy

Bow down before Luther Blissett – the unusual tale of the former Derry City player told by Kevin Brannigan

The Jemmy Hope Column on Islamists, the Magdalene Laundries Ultra-Catholics and Vincent Browne

LookLeft is published the Citizen Press for more information visit or email:

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Hugo Chávez – 1954–2013

Hugo Chávez 1954–2013With profound regret the Peter Daly Society learns of the death of Hugo Chávez, president of Venezuela and leader of the Bolivarian Revolution. We extend our sympathy to the Venezuelan people on the loss of their leader, and we reaffirm our unbreakable solidarity with the Venezuelan Revolution.

Members of the public are invited to sign the book of condolences at James Connolly House (43 East Essex Street).

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There’s a valley in Spain… Commemorating the Battle of Jarama

A great review of the 2013 Jarama Commemoration by David Convery…

Commemorating the Battle of Jarama »

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