The Friday night of July 11th-2014 marked a milestone in the long and happy life of a little public house and grocery shop on Castleisland’s Main Street.
A gathering of locals and people who had rarely, if ever, darkened the door of No.22 previously were there to witness that final night of trading in Sheila Prendiville’s Bar and Grocery.
The date on the fascia, beside the W. Prendiville, boldly states 1798. That was an exercise in conservatism by sign-writer, Mike Kenny who, for once, erred on the side of caution.
He and Sheila deliberated for some time over the date. Sheila was looking at it through the generations of people who had been there before her and could, she said, have gone further back.
Mr. Kenny – God be good to both of them now – pressed the point that when you nail your colours to a mast in so public a fashion you’d better be able to defend it against all comers.
The sign-writer’s ladder was left against the wall that evening as the discussion went on. It was only finally agreed upon well after darkness had fallen and work began the following day.
It was an agreement that would bring joy to both of them a little over a month later when their deliberations drew a most favourable comment from the Tidy Towns adjudicator in September 1998. Another great night at No. 22 ensued.
It was a place where ambience and atmosphere could be cut in slices. It was a place that was sought out by people on the great Castleisland days like: St. Patrick’s Day; the November 1 Horse Fair, the Patrick O’Keeffe Traditional Music Festival and any other excuse for a gathering.
Now that it’s officially for sale, many of its former patrons are hoping that its character won’t be crushed under the burden of health and safety regulations – which finally forced the doors to close. Age had finally caught up with the grand old house. Here’s hoping that the new owner will be inspired by the glow of its past to allow it to shine on into the future.
Galwey Auctioneers on Church Street are handling the sale and Liz can be contacted on: 066 71 42955 or 086 28 333 28 – or click on the advert on this page for more details.