Monday 24 October 2016

Town plans country's largest 'selfie'

David Kearns

Published 03/06/2015 | 12:59

The 800-year-old Roscrea Castle
The 800-year-old Roscrea Castle

The diaspora of Tipperary is being asked to come home so that the spirit of rural Ireland can be captured in a unique photograph.

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The residents of Roscrea in North Tipperary have been invited to take part in a special event this Saturday, June 6, where they’ll be asked to come together as a single group in the courtyard of the town’s 800 year old castle and be photographed.

The aim of the town-wide portrait is to celebrate the history of Ireland’s third oldest market town.

“There isn’t a lot of positivity coming from rural Ireland, and I think that’s a real shame. Roscrea, like most towns in middle Ireland, is a fantastic place and it is about time everyone knew it,” said local publisher James Williams, who first had the idea for the event, dubbed ‘A Portrait of Roscrea’.

Brian Redmond and James Williams, organisers of 'A Portrait of Roscrea'
Brian Redmond and James Williams, organisers of 'A Portrait of Roscrea'

“This town has been here for more than 800 years and I think that’s something that deserves to be celebrated. We’ve worked really hard to get permission from the OPW (Office of Public Works) to do this, because, to be frank, no one can just invite a whole town into the courtyard of a 800 year-old castle for a photo.

“The people of Tipperary are spread out across Ireland, and this is just a small way of reminding them where they’ve come from. If they can, we’d love to get them home for this day as it will mean a lot of be part of something that will last for hundreds of years, just like [Roscrea]  itself.”

A ‘Portrait of Roscrea’ is being sold as a “once in a lifetime opportunity” for rural Ireland to show the rest of the country how strong their community spirit is.

The event aims to be the first ever group portrait of an entire Irish town and its residents.

Admission is free, and the organisers have requested that on the day no flags or banners be brought to the castle grounds, though they do welcome club tops, school uniforms, or anything that might express local pride.

While intended to showcase the people of Roscrea, all were welcome to take part at the event this Saturday at 11pm.

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