On Friday 29th June, the book ‘Walk into my Parlour’ by Frances Maxwell was launched in Drom Community Centre. A native of Ballinahinch, Frances started her teaching career at the ‘Parlour School’ in Ballinlonty.
The book traces the history of the school, outlines the rich and unique culture of the parish (Drom and Inch) and includes personal accounts, newspaper reports, archival material and a collection of new and old photographs. A chapter is dedicated to the Synod of Rathbreasail which, it is widely accepted, took place in the parish in the year 1111.
Fr. Martin Murphy expertly chaired proceedings during the most enjoyable launch. A full house was present to hear Willie Hayes launch the book in his own inimitable way. Willie is an esteemed historian and author of numerous publications including his latest, ‘Holycross - The Awakening of the Abbey’. Willie stated: “I love this kind of book, a book that concentrates on a rural locality and records so much of its life and lore and heritage, in this case the small corner of mid-Tipperary centred round Ballinlonty and its school, and the surrounding townlands from which it drew its pupils.”
“Frances tells it all in her own witty, whimsical and engaging way.”
“A very attractive feature is that the author lets the school speak from its own records, this old school that saw so many phases of local and national history over its lifetime.”
“Frances records all the teachers from 1836 to 1972, the year the school was amalgamated with Drom. Included also are the assistant and substitute teachers, the monitors and the school managers.”
“You have done a great service to Ballinlonty and this parish through your dedicated teaching and your love of place, and through this book, which adds to the archive of Tipperary’s history.”
Gerard Devaney and his staff provided delicious refreshments to the satisfaction of all. Local musicians entertained guests as they queued for their signed copy.
The book (retailing at €20) is available from the author, Frances Maxwell (0504-31206 or firstname.lastname@example.org).