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Displaying items by tag: Patrick Oliver

A tribute to the Oliver fishermen of Galway’s Claddagh and all those who have lost lives at sea is reflected in a moving short film spearheaded by arts consultant Brendan Savage.

Entitled Sea of Souls, the film captures images of 600 floating candles on the Claddagh basin, set to the music of The Galway Baytones male voice a capella group singing the 18th-century Scottish song The Parting Glass.

The film is intended to remember the Olivers and all sea fatalities, and to highlight the role of the Galway RNLI inshore lifeboat and Water Safety Ireland.

Savage, who is from the Claddagh, lost his own father in a trawler sinking, and says he was overwhelmed with sadness when father and son Martin and Tom Oliver lost their lives within 24 hours of each other after an incident in Galway Bay in early November.

The two men were close relatives of fishermen Patrick and Morgan Oliver who have been involved in a number of rescues, including locating the two paddleboarders, Sara Feeney and Ellen Glynn, after they went missing off Furbo last August.

“When you lose someone to the sea, it changes your relationship with the sea forever, and sadly I understand that that is like,” Savage explains.

His father Tom Savage (59) died when the trawler he was crew member of was sunk by a container ship under San Francisco’s Golden Gate bridge almost three decades ago.

“One Russian crew member survived, but my father and his skipper did not - and the skipper’s body was never found,” Savage says.

“As a child, I was taught that on stormy nights a candle was placed in the window to guide home the souls of those lost at sea,” he says.

Shortly before Christmas, he recruited a group of volunteers to help assemble 600 floating candles, timed to light up every evening for five hours.

He then secured the support of Heavy Man Films to document it for a video which is now available to view on YouTube.

Savage said a large number of individuals and businesses supported the initiative, including Galway City Council arts officer James Harrold and Water Safety Ireland deputy chief executive Roger Sweeney.

Peter Connolly and members of Badóirí an Cladaigh helped set up the elaborate candle display, and also illuminated their vessels berthed in the Claddagh basin.

Dr Brendan O’Connor of Aquafact conducted the environmental impact study, Tripart Hardware contributed equipment and many individuals also gave of their time.

“There was a lot of tying string, working with glue, securing the candles to a rope, and helping out with some 8,000 different tasks in all,” Savage says.

“It was a very affirming project for that reason, and the Baytones came down to sing on a cold wet winter’s night,” he says.

Roger Sweeney of Water Safety Ireland said that the 600 candles had particular symbolism, representing some half of the number of fatalities in Irish waters over a decade.

It is anticipated that the initiative may become an annual event with floating candles raising funds for the RNLI and Water Safety Ireland, he says.

Sea of Souls can be viewed below

Published in Galway Harbour

Marine Science Perhaps it is the work of the Irish research vessel RV Celtic Explorer out in the Atlantic Ocean that best highlights the essential nature of marine research, development and sustainable management, through which Ireland is developing a strong and well-deserved reputation as an emerging centre of excellence. From Wavebob Ocean energy technology to aquaculture to weather buoys and oil exploration these pages document the work of Irish marine science and how Irish scientists have secured prominent roles in many European and international marine science bodies.

 

At A Glance – Ocean Facts

  • 71% of the earth’s surface is covered by the ocean
  • The ocean is responsible for the water cycle, which affects our weather
  • The ocean absorbs 30% of the carbon dioxide added to the atmosphere by human activity
  • The real map of Ireland has a seabed territory ten times the size of its land area
  • The ocean is the support system of our planet.
  • Over half of the oxygen we breathe was produced in the ocean
  • The global market for seaweed is valued at approximately €5.4 billion
  • · Coral reefs are among the oldest ecosystems in the world — at 230 million years
  • 1.9 million people live within 5km of the coast in Ireland
  • Ocean waters hold nearly 20 million tons of gold. If we could mine all of the gold from the ocean, we would have enough to give every person on earth 9lbs of the precious metal!
  • Aquaculture is the fastest growing food sector in the world – Ireland is ranked 7th largest aquaculture producer in the EU
  • The Atlantic Ocean is the second largest ocean in the world, covering 20% of the earth’s surface. Out of all the oceans, the Atlantic Ocean is the saltiest
  • The Pacific Ocean is the largest ocean in the world. It’s bigger than all the continents put together
  • Ireland is surrounded by some of the most productive fishing grounds in Europe, with Irish commercial fish landings worth around €200 million annually
  • 97% of the earth’s water is in the ocean
  • The ocean provides the greatest amount of the world’s protein consumed by humans
  • Plastic affects 700 species in the oceans from plankton to whales.
  • Only 10% of the oceans have been explored.
  • 8 million tonnes of plastic enter the ocean each year, equal to dumping a garbage truck of plastic into the ocean every minute.
  • 12 humans have walked on the moon but only 3 humans have been to the deepest part of the ocean.

(Ref: Marine Institute)

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