Nostalgia: A look back at spring scenes in Cork through the decades

Nostalgia: A look back at spring scenes in Cork through the decades

Lambs born on the farm of Mr Bowen, Ballygarvan, Cork in 1956.

On Monday, St Brigid’s Day, the day that many people consider the first day of spring, President Michael D Higgins moved to remind the country that, "just as the seasons change, this crisis, too, will pass".

In a special message to mark Lá Fhéile Bríde, the President encouraged people to stay the course of Covid-19.

"As we prepare to move into the brighter, warmer days of spring, with the renewed hope that it brings, the reality of the present, the present we share, is that the winter of the Covid pandemic is still upon us, and continues.

Keeping warm at the Cork Spring Show and Sales, February 1939.
Keeping warm at the Cork Spring Show and Sales, February 1939.

"The dark days of the pandemic will continue to challenge us for some time, and while lockdown fatigue is very real and palpable for so many, we must continue our journey within and muster up courage," he said.

"Moving through such moments of darkness, it is important to celebrate the light that comes from our common determination to see out the challenge.

Enjoying the spring sunshine at Lavitt's Quay, Cork in 1977. 
Enjoying the spring sunshine at Lavitt's Quay, Cork in 1977. 

"Just as the seasons change, this crisis, too, will pass.

"As an old Caribbean song puts it ‘time heals everything’. How long it will take, and how high the price is that we will pay for it, depends, to a large extent, on how we react today, and in the weeks ahead," he continued.

February 1 is the day when we celebrate the life of St Brigid, who in ancient times was known as the goddess Brigid, a powerful woman and the patroness of, among other things, healing, the arts, fertility and agriculture.

Rush crosses are traditionally made on this day, for hanging above the entrances to dwellings to invoke the help of St Bridget in warding off disease.

Carrigaline Girls NS teacher Margaret Walsh conducting a course in the making of St. Brigid's crosses in Carrigaline library, 2002. Picture: Richard Mills. 
Carrigaline Girls NS teacher Margaret Walsh conducting a course in the making of St. Brigid's crosses in Carrigaline library, 2002. Picture: Richard Mills. 

In his address, President Higgins spoke of the lasting legacy of St Brigid and how she has become an inspiration to generations of Irish women. 

"St Brigid was a woman who rejected the conventions of her time, who dedicated herself to innovation in the realm of education, and who, in seeking to ensure that her voice was heard in a male-dominated world, had to summon an extraordinary courage, transcend obstacles, and not just survive but put a new version of things in place. 

Newborn lambs on a farm in Ringaskiddy in 1968. 
Newborn lambs on a farm in Ringaskiddy in 1968. 

"How appropriate, then, our invoking her is for our present circumstances," he said.

Spring, heralding as it does the arrival of longer and warmer days, is a time of hope and in his address, the President spoke of brighter days to come. 

Lamb born at O'Callaghan's Farm, Vicarstown, Cork in 1955.
Lamb born at O'Callaghan's Farm, Vicarstown, Cork in 1955.

"Spring and springtime offer rebirth, rejuvenation, renewal, resurrection and regrowth. May we all find it," he said.

"As we move closer to the Spring Equinox, let us hold firm in solidarity and take solace in the transformations that spring will bring and the joys of summer which, although we still have some distance to travel to them, are surely awaiting us."

More in this section

Sponsored Content

summersoaplogosml

Called Droid, our next story is about a boy who designs a robot at UCC and chaos ensues. It was written by Margaret Gillies, from the MA in Creative Writing Programme at UCC.

Add Echolive.ie to your home screen - easy access to Cork news, views, sport and more