Historian to examine ‘The Burden of our History’

Eamon Pheonix.
Eamon Pheonix.

BANBRIDGE District Council’s landmark series of free public lectures marking a decade of historical anniversaries launches on Thursday 27 September at the Old Town Hall, Banbridge, with a talk entitled ‘The Burden of our History’.

Delivered by eminent historian, Dr. Eamon Phoenix, the lecture, which will appeal to anyone with an interest in local history and politics, will commence at 7.30pm followed by an interval with light refreshments before a question and answer session concluding at 9.30pm.

In this opening lecture Dr Phoenix will trace the conflicted background of Irish History from the Norman conquest and the Plantation of Ulster through the Williamite Wars to the birth of Republicanism and Orangeism in the 1790s.

The 1798 Rebellion and the involvement of Ulster Presbyterians in Antrim and Down will be examined as will the 1801 Act of Union and the Great Famine of the 1840s.

The talk will focus on the Industrial Revolution in Ulster, the development of Nationalism from O’Connell to Parnell and the rise of Home Rule and Unionism after 1886. The roles of Gladstone, Parnell and Saunderson, the Gaelic Revival and the factors which led to revival of Home Rule by 1912 will also be discussed.

Dr Éamon Phoenix is Principal Lecturer in History and Head of Lifelong Learning at Stranmillis University College, Queen’s University Belfast. A political historian, his books include Northern Nationalism, Nationalist Politics and Partition and the Catholic Minority in Northern Ireland.

He is co-editor of the recent Conflicts in the North of lreland 1900-2000. A regular broadcaster, Dr Phoenix is a member of the Irish Government’s Advisory Committee on Centenaries.

Places for this free event are limited so advance booking is essential. Please contact Banbridge District Council’s Temporary Good Relations Co-ordinator on T: 4066 0605 or email sarah.mcneill@banbridge.gov.uk to book your place.