Limerick Underground

The view from the gutter



Videos and Update:Limerick City River Information Evening

Over 120 Limerick citizens attended our Limerick City River Evening in Ormston House earlier this month. As Living Limerick summed up topics discussed on the night included Shannon water quality, flooding, barriers to fish migration, endangered habitats and species, navigation by boat, pollution, river clean ups, recreation and swimability!

We were fortunate the brilliant Wendigo Media were on hand to film all the presentations from the night as follows:

Elisa O’Donovan from SwimableLimerick introduced the night, followed by Pat Lysaght, Limerick’s very own Eye of the River. Pat spoke about the various locks and bridges throughout the city, as well as the current and flow that impacts getting out and about on the boat.


Continue reading “Videos and Update:Limerick City River Information Evening”

On St.Brigid’s Day

The photos were only thing I’ve kept, you’d be annoyed to know. Isn’t it what you wanted? To be invisible altogether? That was your one wish. I don’t take them out often, and less and less now. Maybe someday it’ll be a year or more since I’ve seen them. Hard to believe that though. I remember each shoot, how great you looked when it was just me and the camera. I didn’t have the studio then, we had to move the bed up on its side against the wall to make the room look bigger, but you always looked good on windowsills and in corners of rooms, anything that could frame the scene, anything that would hide the paucity of our options. You always looked great anywhere.

Our rooms were all strange angles then, walls built to divide bigger rooms into small flats. The grandeur faded but not wholly gone, though one window was painted closed and the other wouldn’t fully close. Catherine street outside was all electricity wires and cracked pavements and day time drinkers. At two in the morning the crowds from the Desmond and Costellos would mingle and riot to keep the night going. If we weren’t amongst them we’d watch them through the window, urban anthropologists laughing at ourselves. The flat wasn’t much, but the views were great conversation. Every Saturday night the scene was infinitely different and always the same, crowds moving to preordained rhythms it seemed.

 That flat suited us, careworn, better days behind and hopefully ahead. The back of the door was a history of locks, so many variations and changes. You could chart the building’s decline by the strength of the locks and so many keys we’d to keep it barred for fear some past resident would drop by unexpected, unannounced and definitely uninvited. It was patchwork of panels that had been broken through and replaced, not always with wood, polyfilla held the door and flat together. Everything broken not quite repaired, everything broken not quite fixable. Continue reading “On St.Brigid’s Day”

Limerick City River Information Evening

Join us at 7.30pm on Tuesday 6th February at Ormston House for a relaxed and informative evening as we learn more about The Shannon that flows through the heart of Limerick city. The aim of the evening is to support the Limerick community in understanding more about our city river and to plan for Shannon activities in 2018. Speakers and topics on the night include:

City tides, ardnacrusha currents and their impact on the river (Pat Lysaght, Eye of the River)

Ecology, flora and fauna of the lower river Shannon (Will O’Connor, Ecofact)

How to care for our city river (Limerick Riverpath Volunteers)

Local Authority Waters and Communities Office: Their role and an update on local river plans (Ruairí Ó Conchúir, Community Water Officer)

Planning for city river activities in 2018 (SwimableLimerick)

Directions to Ormston House, Patrick Street, Limerick can be found here.

This event is free and open to all.

For further information please email, follow us on twitter, facebook or drop us a line on 087-9120231

King Johns castle

Stop the press?

The 20th October 2017 was the day that Limerick changed for me.

I was sitting outside Melt café on Little Catherine Street awaiting a friend. It was a bustling Friday evening in town and we had plans to visit one of the many new bars and restaurants that had sprung up in the last few weeks. I sat and watched as streams of people walked by and for the first time in many years I felt like I was living in an active city. Actually, to place the change that has occurred in Limerick down to one solidarity day does a disservice to what our city has become over the last 12 months. There has been an expectant energy around the place and this seemed to culminate in a December full of hopeful promises to come. It seems apt that New Year’s eve sees the return of fireworks to Limerick as sparkle and spectacle are the only fitting end to a year when Limerick became sexy again.

Yet admist this expectation and prevailing vibrancy that has embraced our cities people, stands an institution that appears to want to drag Limerick back into the bleakest times in our recent history. A time where Limerick was ridiculed and a national stereotype. A time where the ‘values’ of the Catholic Church dominated leaving many excluded, rejected and ostracised. A time where deeply entrenched conservatism was forced upon Limerick’s usually dynamic people by its fading institutions. Continue reading “Stop the press?”

A Christmas ode to Sionna

There’s a feeling to this city, a dream I keep having, when the city is appearing through the riverfog as I cross Sarsfield bridge. The people could be spectres in the cold December weather. There is nothing special about Christmas in Limerick, or Limerick at Christmas, nothing you wouldn’t find everywhere and anywhere. Too much shopping, too many people, always too many cars. The city is maddeningly full and completely empty at the same time. We could all be phantoms, as if we shed our heavy jackets and layers there might really be nothing underneath. The wind comes blowing freezing up from the river, and I thought about how the river was once considered a Goddess, and wished we’d kept some of that paganism still, to keep some old magic alive, to keep any magic alive. Continue reading “A Christmas ode to Sionna”

Speakers Corner in association with Limerick Mental Health Week

We are hosting a special Speakers Corner for Limerick Mental Health Week this Saturday 7th October on the topic of ‘Mental Health’. If you have any thoughts, opinion, ideas or reflections on mental health that you would like to share with others than come down to Arthurs Quay Park at 1pm on Saturday to have your say. We intivite all limerick citizens to have the opportunity to stand up and speak about any aspect of mental health that they feel is important.

Limerick Speakers Corner is open to everyone and anyone who wants to get up on their soapbox and have their voice heard. Just turn up on the day and let Limerick hear your opinions, views, thoughts and musings. We encourage public discussion and debate for Limerick people to connect in a meaningful and thoughtful way.


Limerick Underground gets cultured

If you like what we have to say on here then why not join us for a special Limerick Underground Speakers Corner on Culture Night. We will be meeting from 8-9pm at Arthurs Quay Park on Friday September 22nd. All are welcome to attend, to speak, to listen, to laugh, to question, to ponder and to connect with fellow Limerick citizens.

Continue reading “Limerick Underground gets cultured”

August City Swims- update

We are organising weekly city swims throughout August for Limerick people to dip their toe (and a whole lot more!) into our beautiful River Shannon.

Our aim is to provide a safe and fun environment for anyone to enjoy the freedom of curraghowerswimming in the city. The lovely folks at the Curraghgour Boat Club are kindly letting us use their facilities as we will start the swim from their slipway.  Our aim will be to swim from the Boat Club to Thomond Bridge at a nice, relaxed pace. As our River Shannon is tidal, dates and times have been arranged to make it the most pleasant for swimming. Please try and arrive at least 5 minutes before these times:

Saturday 12th Augsut 9.30am

Sunday 20th August 5.45pm (Weather conditions as of 12pm today indicate localised flooding. This is not safe for swimming so there will be no swim in The Shannon today) 

Monday 21st August 6.30pm

Saturday 26th August 9.30am

What you need to bring with you:

  • A brightly coloured swimming cap so you are visible in the water
  • Swimming suit/ togs or wetsuit and googles
  • Towel
  • You! With a sense of fun, curiosity and willingness to try new experiences

Continue reading “August City Swims- update”

Limerick Underground goes Open Water

“We all swim at the same pace and stick together. And watch out for the swans!”

It’s 12.30pm on a warm but overcast Saturday afternoon in Limerick city. I am teetering on the edge of St Michael’s Rowing Club’s new pontoon. I look down at my bare legs as I shuffle my toes towards the water. Beside me stand Ger and John, me in my bright pink swimming suit and the two men in their speedos. The three of us make an unlikely trio, formed through an impromptu message I sent through the Limerick Masters whatsapp group earlier that day. I look across the river, towards House, where my friends are lounging in the garden treating themselves to afternoon tea and cake. I question why I am not over there with them. I have had a particularly stressful week. Work has been hectic; I’m pretty sure I’m being ghosted by my sole Tinder match and with one week before pay day I am looking into days of Dealz tinned soup for nourishment.

“One, Two, three. Jump!” shouts Ger. We all lift into the air together and then there are no more times for questions or worries. Continue reading “Limerick Underground goes Open Water”

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