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75th Anniversary Commemoration of the British Handover of Camden Fort Meagher to the Irish Defence Forces

12th July 2013
Fort Meagher in Cork harbour. Photo: By Bob Bateman. Scroll down the page for photos of last night's commemoration ceremony at the fort
75th Anniversary Commemoration of the British Handover of Camden Fort Meagher to the Irish Defence Forces

#corkharbour –  Camden Fort Meagher commemorated the 75th anniversary of the handover of the fort from British Crown Forces to The Irish Defence Forces writes Claire Bateman. Scroll down for photos of last night's ceremony.

Camden Fort Meagher, situated in Crosshaven, Cork Harbour, Co. Cork, was one of several Treaty Port forts transferred to the Irish Government in 1938. It is recognised as being one of the finest remaining examples of a classical Coastal Artillery Fort in the world.

Paul Brierley, Project Coordinator at Camden Fort Meagher, emphasised the significance of the event. "We are delighted to commemorate this historic occasion which marks a pivotal point, not only in the fort's history, but also in our National history." The fort was officially renamed Camden Fort Meagher on the histrical evening, highlighting two significant figures in Britsh and Irish military history, the Earl of Camden and Thomas Francis Meagher.

The ceremony for the occasion last evening was hugely historical, and was filled with emotion, poignancy, happiness and pride. The fort was filled to capacity, the sun shone on everyone and every place. The Cork designed and built L.E. Eithne was moored off the fort. She was designed by Patrick Martin, Chief Naval Architect at Verolme Cork Dockyard where she was built. As Flaghip of the Irish Naval Service, Eithne led by firing the first salute, and this was returned by an Army salute with two 25 pounder canon.

The scene with the crowds, excitement, blazing sun, the presence of the British Ambassador, His Excellency Dominic Chilcott CMG, complete with elegant panama hat – could have been reminiscent of an Indian setting though we knew it was our own beautiful country! Other distinguished guests for the official renaming of the Fort included the Mayor of Cork County, Councillor Noel O'Connor, Cork County Manager, Martin Riordan and a very distinguished guest in the person of Mr. Michael Kelly a 97–year–old veteran who had seen service at the Fort when it was under British Command.

cork harbour british ambassador

LE Eithne passes by Fort Meagher during last night's commemoration. Photo: Bob Bateman. Scroll down for more photos.

The Irish Army, Irish Navy and retired units from reserve forces that have trained at the fort were also represented on the evening.

The natural setting was made all the more splendid by the yachts taking part in the Royal Cork Yacht Club Thursday night racing and made a lovely sight passing the L.E. Eithne on their way back to Crosshaven.

All in all, a most magical evening that will provide lasting memories for all that were privileged to be present and no memory more poignant than that of the Army figure silhouetted in the evening sunlight raising the Tricolour to the haunting sound of the lone Bugle.

The evening concluded with the official flypast of the Irish Coastguard Search and Rescue helicopter from Waterford.

Published in Cork Harbour Team

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It’s one of the largest natural harbours in the world – and those living near Cork Harbour insist that it’s also one of the most interesting.

This was the last port of call for the most famous liner in history, the Titanic, but it has been transformed into a centre for the chemical and pharmaceutical industry.

The harbour has been a working port and a strategic defensive hub for centuries, and it has been one of Ireland's major employment hubs since the early 1900s. Traditional heavy industries have waned since the late 20th century, with the likes of the closure of Irish Steel in Haulbowline and shipbuilding at Verolme. It still has major and strategic significance in energy generation, shipping and refining.

Giraffe wander along its shores, from which tens of thousands of men and women left Ireland, most of them never to return. The harbour is home to the oldest yacht club in the world, and to the Irish Navy. 

This deep waterway has also become a vital cog in the Irish economy. 


‘'s Cork Harbour page’ is not a history page, nor is it a news focus. It’s simply an exploration of this famous waterway, its colour and its characters.

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