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Monday 21 May 2018

Great egg-spectations: How Ireland's largest egg cup collection found a new home

When Anne passed away in 2012, she told her children that none of the egg cups were to be separated

The egg cup collection

Rachel Farrell

A Dublin man has been searching the country for a new home for what could be Ireland's biggest egg cup collection.

Paul O'Hara's late mother Anne began collecting egg cups almost 48 years ago, despite not actually liking to eat eggs. There is believed to be over 1,500 egg cups in the collection, but Paul thinks there could be more.

"It was something to do that was relatively inexpensive. She could go out to the shop, pop out around with the buggy and pick up one or two little egg cups for a pound or whatever they were at the time," Paul told Independent.ie.

"Over time, it built up from there. We would pick her up little bits for Christmas and as we got older and got a bit more money, we'd get more extravagant ones."

The egg cup collection
The egg cup collection

Paul explained that the collection had created many fond memories for the family over the years. From hand washing the ornaments every year to bomb scares, each egg held a special place in Anne's heart.

"Her favourite ones were the ones we all gave her, from her four sons and her daughter. This one time, the oldest brother Chris, about 10 years ago he went travelling around Europe in his van. 

"Chris put the egg cups he had collected for her in in his van and continued on his travels. When he went into Kosovo they suspected it was a bomb and he was held down on the ground at gun point until the issue got resolved."

When Anne passed away in 2012, she told her children that none of the egg cups were to be separated.

"About a year or two before she passed away, she asked me would I build a large shed, putting in cabinets to display them and so on, so people could come and visit the egg cup museum because there wasn't one here in Ireland. I had to decline, I couldn't be building a museum and a car park and spending my weekends hanging around for people to look at egg cups. 

"So she accepted that and asked would I just arrange it so they're kept together, that nobody divides them up or separates them. She wanted people to enjoy them, that was it. 

"People loved coming to see them, the grandkids enjoyed it more than anybody. They'd come and look at all the colours and different shapes and sizes and characters. That’s what mattered to her, that people were going to enjoy them. She hated the idea that they'd end up in a box."

Paul finally decided to ask Dermot and Dave on TodayFM for help this week, where their call for someone to take the collection was answered.

"They're hopefully going to a museum up in Leitrim, the Glenview museum. It seems like that's where they're going to go and they're delighted to be getting them. 

"I think Mam would be delighted and I think the rest of the family would be too. She'd be delighted that it's getting a bit of coverage and that people would want to go see them."

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