• May 30, 2015


The Ruairí Ó Brádaigh Summer School takes place on June 6th in Roscommon. The theme of this, the second one, will be to place contemporary struggles in Ireland in the context of 1916 (see below).

Ruairí Ó Brádaigh was a controversial political figure in Ireland he served as a member of the IRA in the 1950s taking and led a ten-member IRA group in an arms raid on Hazebrouck Barracks, near Arborfield, Berkshire. It was a depot for the No. 5 Radar Training Battalion of the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers. It was the biggest IRA arms raid in Britain.

Later he took part in the failed IRA Border Campaign of the 1950s (Operation Harvest) going on to take a prominent role in the organisation.

Switching to the political struggle as President of Sinn Fein he was uncompromising over the decision of the Party to drop abstentionism and take seats in Stormont Belfast and Dáil Éireann at Leinster House.

After that decision he resigned and helped establish Republican Sinn Fein (RSF) and was elected as its President from 1987 until 2009.

Ruairí Ó Brádaigh was committed to the Inter-Celtic ideal and was a member of the Irish branch of the Celtic League for many years. At the Celtic Leagues 50th Anniversary (AGM) in Scotland in 2011 a paper, by his successor as President of RSF, Des Dalton highlighted Ó Brádaigh’s commitment (see link at the foot of this article).

When he died in 2013 the Celtic League registered condemnation at the decision to deploy large numbers of Gardai at his funeral.

Details of the various themes to be discussed at the Summer School are set out below:

“2nd Annual Ruairí Ó Brádaigh Summer School

The Unfinished Business of 1916

On Saturday June 6, 2015 the 2nd Annual Ruairí Ó Brádaigh Summer School will take place in the Abbey Hotel, Roscommon from 9.30am to 5.30pm. This year the Summer School will be looking ahead to the centenary of the 1916 Rising. Ruairí Ó Brádaigh worked throughout his life for economic, political and social justice both in Ireland and internationally and these themes will be reflected in the Summer School programme.

Current issues such as the Campaign against Water Charges and the battle for the control of our natural resources, for example the Shell-to-Sea campaign, will be debated in terms of how these issues reflect in a modern context the ethos and thinking behind the 1916 Proclamation.

The Rising and the politics of commemoration. The relevance of the 1916 Proclamation and what it has to say to the Ireland of today. The 1916 Rising and Ireland’s place in the global struggle against imperialism will all feed into what promises to be a day of lively debate and discussion.

Book Launch: Selected Writings and Speeches Volume 1: 1970 -1986. Ruairí Ó Brádaigh, edited by Dieter Reinisch, will be launched in the hotel straight after the Summer School at 6pm.

On Sunday, June 7 a commemoration will be held. Forming up beside the entrance to the Abbey Hotel at 11.45am there will be parade to the grave of Ruairí Ó Brádaigh at St Coman’s Cemetery where the oration will be given by John Joe McCusker, Fermanagh.”

Related link here on Celtic News.

J B Moffatt (Mr)
Director of Information
Celtic League


(Please note that replies to correspondence received by the League and posted on CL News are usually scanned hard copies. Obviously every effort is made to ensure the scanning process is accurate but sometimes errors do occur.)


The Celtic League has branches in the six Celtic Countries. It works to promote cooperation between these countries and campaigns on a broad range of political, cultural and environmental matters. It highlights human rights abuse, monitors all military activity and focuses on socio-economic issues

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