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UK's Royal Mail Sponsorship of RMS Leinster Centenary Concert - Tomorrow Sunday 7th October

6th October 2018
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The RMS Leinster which was operated by the City of Dublin Steam Packet Company whose ornate crest still remains adorning the preserved facade of their head office at 15 Eden Quay, along the city's central north banks of the River Liffey. The RMS Leinster which was operated by the City of Dublin Steam Packet Company whose ornate crest still remains adorning the preserved facade of their head office at 15 Eden Quay, along the city's central north banks of the River Liffey. Photo: JEHAN ASHMORE

#rmsLeinster - As part of RMS Leinster commemorative events, the UK's Royal Mail Group appropriately is the main sponsor of a special centenary concert tomorrow, Sunday 7th October (7.30pm) at Christ Church, Park Road, Dún Laoghaire in Co. Dublin.  

Performances at the venue (near the Peoples Park), will be from Rónán Murray, Niamh Murray, Simon Morgan, The Brook Singers and The CWU Band. Tickets at the door cost €10 and can also be booked by emailing: [email protected]

The disaster that struck the Royal Mail Ship (RMS) Leinster took place almost 100 years ago 10th October, 1918 and notably occured within the closing weeks of World War One (WW1). The 'mail-boat' was sailing from Kingstown (Dun Laoghaire) to Holyhead, north Wales, when struck by torpedo from German U-Boat 123, while off the Kish Bank lightship, which led to the sinking and a major loss of life.

On board RMS Leinster was an estimated 77 crew, 22 postal sorters (250 sacks of mail), approximately 180 civilians and in the region of 500 soldiers. Of the 779, the loss of life totalled 569 and was made all the more tragic particularly for the Post Office as all but one of the staff survived. They worked in the ship’s sorting office and were attached to the Dublin Postal District.

The concert tomorrow evening will be poignant, given that a concert was held 100 years ago to raise funds for the dependents of those who perished on the mail-boat in 1918. The incident on the horizon of Dublin Bay also brought WWI very close to Irish shores. To this day, the tragedy remains the single worst loss of life to have taken place on the Irish Sea.

RMS Leinster was operated by the City of Dublin Steam Packet as one of a quartet of Irish province named passenger 'mail-boats'. They served the postal contract from the Royal Mail to convey post and parcels between Dublin and London.

An Post will too commemorate the tragedy by holding a significant display in Dún Laoghaire Post Office and the G.P.O in central Dublin. In addition to issuing a special edition stamp to mark the centenary next week on Wednesday, 10th October.

Afloat focused on the former steam-packet's head office where an ornate crest (pictured above) remains on the preserved facade of 15 Eden Quay, along the inner city quays.  The crest may also be familar as it appears superimposed on an image of RMS Leinster in Dun Laoghaire Harbour, supplied to dlrtimes (click here) see page 3 and information on events.  

In addition to events organised by The Mail Boat Leinster Centenary Committee click here including the anniversary of the disaster on Wednesday. 

Published in Dublin Bay
Jehan Ashmore

About The Author

Jehan Ashmore

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Jehan Ashmore is a marine correspondent, researcher and photographer, specialising in Irish ports, shipping and the ferry sector serving the UK and directly to mainland Europe. Jehan also occasionally writes a column, 'Maritime' Dalkey for the (Dalkey Community Council Newsletter) in addition to contributing to UK marine periodicals. 

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