Cornelscourt Parish Hall

Cornelscourt Parish Hall
The Location of Foxrock Folk Club


As Luke Kelly remarked when he played the club in December 1972, a folk club in the suburb of Foxrock was a somewhat unlikely combination. Probably even more unlikely was the fact it was organised and run by teenagers and managed to attract to Foxrock some of the biggest names on the Irish music scene (see Folk Club History & "Local and Visiting Artists").

The aim of the Foxrock Folk Club Project is to (1) research the history of the club (2) develop a club archive and (3) create a space in which people who played at the club or attended some of the sessions can share their memories of what was an unique musical and cultural experience.


Saturday, 23 January 2016


The Fat Duck Restaurant in Bray in Berkshire is one of the most famous (and expensive) in England. The chef who established it, Heston Blumethal, is renown for his unusual and experimental use of ingredients which include such dishes as egg and bacon ice cream and snail porridge. However one of the innovations of the restaurant that I find quite attractive is its concept of multi-sensory dining where you listen to the sound of the sea on an iPod as you are eating a shellfish dish. Not suprisingly I've never been, as the cost is as extreme as the cooking and to get in (like some schools) you have to be put down for a place on the day you're born, if not before. However, after a recent dining experience, I no longer have any reason to envy those who do get to the Fat Duck.
Passing through Dublin recently, I met up with Una, a stalwart of the folk club and of many other community activities, who still lives in the area. Together with my wife, we decided to have a nostalgic meal in the Shanai Indian restaurant that now occupies the building that was the Parish Hall where the folk club took place. The manager and his staff were very welcoming and were pleased to know about the previous history of the building and the manager was delighted when I gave him a copy of the CD. Although an extension has been added at the back of the restaurant, the long narrow main building that was the Parish Hall still remains and the door is in the same place.
The food was excellent and we were happily tucking into the delicious chicken pakora and jumbo prawn house special curry remembering the folk club days (my wife is now an honorary member having heard the tapes so often!). Then I heard the music coming over the speaker system and said in amazement to Una, 'Listen, that's Al O'Donnell. He's playing the CD!' We couldn't believe it. Here we were in the parish hall listening to the recordings of musicians who we first heard live in the same place over 45 years ago. And he played both CDs right through!
As far as we could see the other diners did not really notice this incredible Proustian moment but it may have had a subliminal effect and some time in the future when they are passing by Claddagh or Tower Records they will feel an irresistible urge to go in and buy the album.
I don't know if the CD will be permanently on the sound track but perhaps during a visit if you say you would like to hear a track or two, maybe you will be lucky....

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