Family support calls to name new bridge after 'Charlie the Bogman'

Charlie the Bogman was a ‘character of days gone by’
Family support calls to name new bridge after 'Charlie the Bogman'

Charlie Coleman, colloquially known as ‘Charlie the Bogman’.

THE family of a bygone Corkonian colloquially known as ‘Charlie the Bogman’ have expressed their support for a proposal to name the city’s newest bridge in his memory.

Earlier this month, Independent councillor in the city’s South-Central ward, Paudie Dineen, outlined his intention to put forward a submission for the new bridge connecting Grange to Tramore Valley Park to be named ‘Charlie’s Bridge’.

Mr Dineen sought to gather information on the mysterious Leesider who spent a portion of his life living out in nature adjacent to the former Kinsale Road landfill.

He has since garnered some details about the late Corkonian whose surname was Coleman.

“Charlie Coleman, aka Charlie the Bogman, was a character of days gone by who was well known to many and well known to have lived his life in his own exclusive lifestyle in and around the area in which the bridge is to be situated. The area in question was Lanes Wood.

“So much so was the association of Charlie Coleman and Lanes Wood that the pond situated there was known by many to be Charlie’s pond.

“Many young people in the 60s and 70s would have been of the impression that Lanes Wood was a tract of land that belonged to Charlie,” he explained.

Mr Dineen ascertained that Charlie resided as a young boy within a tenement on 98th street with his family. He was the youngest of ten siblings.

The then Cork Corporation would later house the Coleman family at a property in Ballyphehane.

“Even though Charlie Coleman was an educated man he apparently turned his back on a regular upbringing as such and turned to nature to live out his life,” Mr Dineen said.

Mr Dineen said he learned that Charlie would live between a shed in the garden of the house in Ballyphehane and that he also had a wooden hut in Lanes Wood.

He said he also learned that when the old landfill opened in the 1960s, Charlie would sometimes be seen foraging for goods and that he would provide spare parts for bicycles and the like to anyone who required them.

“Charlie Coleman did not invent the wheel, the sliced pan, or a miracle cure but he was a character of days gone by. He was one of many characters.

“Charlie lived his life in Lanes Wood and was, one could say, the first and only resident of that tract of land — the same tract of land and the site of the new pedestrian bridge crossing the N40,” Mr Dineen said.

One of the people who shared information with Mr Dineen was Paddy Coleman, a nephew of Charlie’s.

Speaking to The Echo, Mr Coleman said the family would be “delighted” to see the new bridge named after Charlie.

In March, Cork City Council commenced a public consultation, inviting nominations for the naming of the new bridge which was lifted into place earlier this month.

Other suggestions that have been put forward for the bridge include ‘The Sanctuary Bridge’ — a suggestion from solidarity-through-sport movement, Sanctuary Runners Ireland.

Meanwhile, Cork Traveller Women’s Network posted that it would like to see the structure called ‘On the Tobar’ —Traveller cant for on the road — “to acknowledge the important Traveller heritage of the area”.

The closing date for receipt of submissions was last Friday.

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