GALWAY’S Cllr Michael Connolly unveiled this plaque in 2016 in memory of the Galway prisoners held in Fron-goch camp in Wales after the 1916 Rising. Tom Gilmore is pictured beside the plaque last month.

Wales still remembers Collins and 1916 rebels

Visit to Fron-goch reveals strong Galway connections

MICHAEL Collins, plus 1,800 other Irish prisoners, many from Galway, are still remembered on plaques in a simple wooden shed and in a field named ‘Croke Park’ in Fron-goch in Wales, where they were interned in 1916.

A week before the recent major Irish commemoration for Collins in Cork, it was almost eerie to stand in silence in the remote valley village and see so much memorabilia from the incarceration of the Irish volunteers from the 1916 Rising, which only took place in Dublin and Galway.

In the searing August sun (31 degrees) in the Welsh valley, Fron-goch looks idyllic, but to say it’s remote is almost an understatement. Beautiful looking, yes, at this time of year, but it was a miserable muddy mess when the Irish prisoners were crammed into two camps there in 1916.

It was good to see the plaque that Galway Co Council Mayor in 2016, Cllr. Michael Connolly, unveiled in Fron-goch on the centenary of the Easter Rising, making Galway the only county in Ireland to have such a memorial plaque placed there.

It is positioned strategically beside the main metal plaque put there by the Welsh, which states that 1,800 Irishmen were interned there after the Easter Rising.

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