Lockdown Creations

Read stories written during lockdown by people cocooning in Co. Kildare. Immerse yourself in these wonderful stories and tales that capture experiences of life lived in Ireland.


Bernard was my uncle, aged 32 on 17 th July 1955 when he died, he was the youngest of 10 children had a shop beside the Olympia Theatre, and his cause of death was “Phthisis”. He was not married and his sisters cared for him in their home in Dublin. As a child when IContinue reading “Phthisis”

The Prayer Book

I received my first prayer book on the day of my First Communion in 1958, and don’t know where it is now, but can see it as clearly as if it was yesterday, it had a white cover and I was so proud of it. I have many old prayer books in my house nowContinue reading “The Prayer Book”

The Measure of a Man

By Colette Moore John Reilly of the Hill (as he was always referred to) was a first cousin of Daddy’s. Everyone in the town of Portarlington would say “you could set your watch by John Reilly”. John lost his beautiful young son Paddy at a very tender age. While Paddy was very ill, the localContinue reading “The Measure of a Man”

The Telegram

It was a summer evening, I was about 5 years old and standing on a chair at the sink in the back kitchen beside my mother at the sink, she was preparing a salad for our tea and was showing me how to peel the shell of the boiled egg and we were laughing asContinue reading “The Telegram”

The Emergency

We didn’t call it the Second World War, we called it “The Emergency” and it was during this time that “RATIONING” was introduced in Ireland. Every family in Southern Ireland received a half yearly book of coupons which had different lettering for the individual items each household bought. In Northern Ireland the rationing was notContinue reading “The Emergency”

Hector Grey

A shopping trip to Dublin with my mother was always a very exciting day in my childhood especially at Christmas. Arnotts, Boyers, Clearys were her favourite shops especially their Summer and January Sales days. I, as a small child loved a trip into Woolworths and then down to Hector Greys. I remember pleading with herContinue reading “Hector Grey”

Words of Wisdom

By Michéal De Paor Words of Wisdom (Part One)I was born two doors away in the County Hospital in Portlaoise and lived on what was called the corner of the Block. This prestigious location meant that the Jail was on the far side of the road, while St Fintan’s Mental Hospital and the Morgue wereContinue reading “Words of Wisdom”

Ballinrobe 1880

A letter in the Irish Times by General Gordon described the prevailing condition of the Irish peasantry in terms uncannily reminiscent of other witnessed over two centuries. He found them “patient beyond belief….loyal, but at the same time broken spirited and desperate, living on the verge of starvation in places where we would not keepContinue reading “Ballinrobe 1880”

My Transistor Radio

You remember when there were no mobile phones, and our phones were black heavy objects with a front circular dial, which were situated on a small table in the hallway. Then in the 90s our children, nieces and nephews started arriving in with this new device called a “Mobile Phone”. Overnight our means of communicationContinue reading “My Transistor Radio”

The Pub

By Loretta Kenny I was born in 1957 in a small rural village in Co. Wexford. My parents ran a fairly large business which consisted of a Grocery Shop, a Mill and a Public House. I lived over this business until I was nearly twelve years of age and I would like to share withContinue reading “The Pub”

My May Altar

By Colette Moore The sadness overwhelms me, even though I’d always been told I’d had the “gift of the gab” on this occasion I’m lost for words, not so much lost, but trying to find the right words. I’m sad because such a huge part of my childhood is lost to memory, I’m trying toContinue reading “My May Altar”

The Mission Mass

By Marie Conlon This special Mass occurred long ago, when a house in the Parish was chosen by the Priest to say Mass in. This was a practice that had continued from the Penal times when the celebration of Mass was forbidden. For the family, it was an honour to be chosen but did involveContinue reading “The Mission Mass”

The Big Freeze 1947

By Marie Conlon The early part of January 1947 had been unusually mild and the Sean Lemass was glad as the Autumn had been very wet and a lot of the turf hadn’t been saved and lay wet in the bogs. The 2nd World War was still on and had affected our imports of coal,Continue reading “The Big Freeze 1947”

My First Memory

By Michéal De Paor At Halloween in 1957 or 58, as a young child, I accompanied my father and Joe O’Grady, who was then the Laois County Engineer on a journey from Portlaoise to St Jarleth’s College in Tuam to bring my eldest brother home for the Halloween break. As I was only 4 orContinue reading “My First Memory”

Family Ties

By Anne Doyle Bang!!! Mam Mam, where are you? We are learning all about the 1916Rising today, did you have any relations in the Rising?, Yes, and he playedsuch a big part in it all that they wrote a book about him. “Yes yes yes that’sbrilliant, I bet no one else will have as goodContinue reading “Family Ties”

Broken Promise

By Micheál De Paor As the end of the Nineteenth Century approached, a headstrong teenager, Maggie Leyden, from Newport Co Mayo sailed to the US to join up with and marry her love Stephen Gibbons. Maggie’s parents strongly disapproved of her actions and missed her greatly. Within a few years a Telegram arrived for MaggieContinue reading “Broken Promise”

The Coat

By Dorothy Clinton “Life is strange”, she said to herself. She used to have a good memory, now shewas uncertain of it. She was uncertain of a lot of things, there were times whenshe was not sure of who she was herself. Then she smiled and thought of thecoat. Times were bad in the thirtiesContinue reading “The Coat”

Dare to Be Yourself

By Bridie Corrigan I would like to introduce you to two formidable women each in their own way.The first, my mother Nell Barrett R.I.P. and the second my Aunt Kate BrennanR.I.P. They are both on their way to visit a brother in England. I was taggingalong as general factotum (which means running around doing everything).Continue reading “Dare to Be Yourself”

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