Monday 24 June 2019

Listen to 1916 Oral History: Anne Marie Kelly on her father's role in the Battle of Ashbourne

Anne Marie Kelly recalls her father, Peadar Kelly’s role in the Battle of Ashbourne in 1916.

Her father worked in the civil service in Liverpool as a youth, and on his return to Ireland he became involved with the Gaelic League, played Gaelic games and took part in other Gaelic-related activities.

Anne Marie recalls hearing about the members of the Fingal Brigade, which included her Uncle Jack, who were sent into Dublin during Easter Week 1916 at the request of James Connolly and selected by Thomas Ashe.

Ashe was a personal friend of Jack Kelly who was chosen to go to the GPO. His brother Peadar was active in Fingal in general and was involved in the Battle of Ashbourne.

News of the surrender marking the end of the Rising came as a shock to the men who had taken part in the action at Ashbourne.

When news of the surrender came, the men were camped at Kilsallaghan where they were arrested and later transported to prisons in England. Peadar Kelly was detained at Wandsworth Prison and Jack Kelly at Knutsford Prison.

Both men were later interned at Frongoch in Wales and Anne Marie explains how the men became involved in the fight for freedom on their release, and her father was again jailed from December 1920 to December 1921.

For more from the 1916 Oral History project, go to

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