Wednesday 16 January 2019

Irish Defence Forces open day in Cork next Sunday

Bill Browne

The public has been issued with an open invitation to get a glimpse of the work done by the Irish Defence Forces during an open day taking place in Cork City this coming Sunday. 

The open day, which will take place in Fitzgerald's Park from noon to 4pm will offer visitors a fascinating insight into the inner workings of the Irish Defence Forces.

This year marks a significant milestone for the Irish military as its marks six decades of wearing the blue beret of the United Nations on peace keeping duties at hotspots across the globe. 

Since 1958, Ireland has maintained the longest unbroken service on the front line of keeping peace, with more than 70,000 tours of duty undertaken by the men and women of Óglaigh na hÉireann. During that some 87 members of the Defence forces have made the ultimate sacrifice in the cause of peace. 

Military archivists will attend Sunday's event, offering an insight into the lives of military serving abroad as well as historical material dating back to the revolutionary period. 

They will also offer guidance to those wishing to research their own family's military history. 

There will be plenty of other things taking place across the course of the afternoon with highlights including weapons displays, tactical demonstrations, a unarmed combat display, a band recital and a fly-past by the Irish Air Corps. 

The Lord Mayor of Cork, Cllr Tony Fitzgerald, said Cork County Council was delighted to partner with the Defence Forces to hold the open day. 

"This is a unique chance for the public to see all the different elements within the defence forces everything from combat displays, Air Corps flypast and pipe band recitals. I am so proud of the work of the Defence Forces and this event will give the public an opportunity to see at first hand the work they on behalf our citizens and country," said Cllr Fitzgerald. 

"We are fortunate in Cork to have such a gem as Fitzgerald's Park and see it being used for what promises to be a great family day out," he added.