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Gleann a' Phúca

The Six Artist Propositions for Gleann a’ Phúca

Details of proposal

This is a project of fuaimneanna ~ FuaimMná ~ nár thug mé suntas dóibh cheana – sounds I hadn’t noticed before – those of the women, specifically for this proposal, the women of the Glen River Park. Are they hiding in the scullery of the Old Glen House or in between the leaves of the pages of a son’s short stories? Do they remain undiscovered in our present-day community? And what of the future, the young girls who balance surefooted on the Yin Yang sculpture? Will their sound be heard from atop the stone walls of old bridges, their stories held aloft on newer bridges moulded in yellow metal, or will they simply flow beneath, written in the water?


From the late 1800’s to the present day

For this project, I propose to lift the voices of the women, the SoundWomen of the Glen River Park, many of whom have fallen under the radar. Our FuaimMná trail will move from the late 1800’s through to our present day and beyond. It will include Laura McCarthy (nee Eaton) or ‘Nana Mac’, who ran a sweet shop on the Old Glen Lane, born in the 1870’s; Mary Kenny (nee O’Connell), 20 years old and Anne Wright, (nee Barry) 19, still just young women on the night of the Dillons Cross Ambush, December 11th, 1920 , who both acted bravely and with purpose as events unfolded; Anne Fleischmann (nee Madden), wife of composer, Prof. Aloys Fleischmann who lived in the Glen River Park from the late 1940’s until her death in 1990. Following a period of research looking at archival material, publications and more especially linking up with living relatives of some of these women, I will write a poem or piece of prose on each woman, inspired by her life story, along with a short factual piece on each of their lives.

Ann Dalton

Writing and Sound installation

The FuaimMná trail will also include a woman and young girl from our present-day local community, creating a link on our FuaimMná trail from past to present and into the future.

For research with the present-day community, I plan some deeper discussion with the users of the park, with local community groups as well as youth groups.

Each piece of writing will be recorded as simple voice overs and set up as a sound trail around the park from bridge to bridge. The sound trail will be accessed via QR codes presented on beautifully designed bronze plaques on each of the bridges as you stroll through the park and connect with the women on the FuaimMná trail.

I would like to thank Maeve, Ruth, and Alan Fleischmann, Dick Kenny, Margaret Murphy, Billy McCarthy, Noreen Clery, Gerard Delanty and the Military Archives for help with research for this project.  All photos used with permission. A big thank you also to Katie Whelan for poster design and to Gleann na Phúca for the opportunity to create this project.

Poster about FuaimMná



A photograph of a young woman, Anne Madden

Anne Madden

THIS PROJECT WILL LAUNCH IN SUMMER 2024 – Look out for the bronze plaques in the park and link to the recordings from there 🙂

Ann Dalton’s peom about Anne Madden can be heard by clicking on the blackberrry

Anne Madden was born in 1912 to a wealthy Cork family, her father, James Madden, being one of two owners of Maddens Wines and Groceries on Bridge St. While still at school, her father died of tuberculosis and, although his death impacted their family financially, she was still considered more or less a society girl.

She studied medicine at UCC and, while there, met her future husband, the composer, Prof. Aloys Fleishmann. Anne lived with her husband and five children in Glen House in the Glen River Park from the late 1940’s until her death in 1990.  She hosted parties in their home for so many from the music and art world and became known as one of Cork’s greatest characters.

A photograph of a young woman, Anne Madden
Anne Madden
A photograph of a family grandmother, Anne Barry, her daughter and grandsons

Anne Barry

Ann Dalton’s poem about Anne Barry can be heard by clicking on the blackberry

Anne Barry was just 19 years old on the night of the Dillon’s Cross Ambush, on December 11th, 1920. She was an active member of Cumann na mBan and, under grave danger herself, hid revolvers and a grenade in a local garden for the men who carried out the ambush.

She, along with two of her sisters, Eily and Dotie, were well known for their activities with Cumann na mBan during the War of Independence and the Civil War in Ireland.  Anne spent her days working at being invisible so that she could further the cause that she believed in. She remained committed to her beliefs throughout her life, always standing by her Republican roots.

A photo of Anne Barry with her sistersAnne Barry – photo with her sisters – Anne, Emily, Rita, Dottie

A photograph of a family grandmother, Anne Barry, her daughter and grandsons
Anne Barry – photo with her grandsons Richard and Vincent and her daughter, Patricia
A Photo of Mary O'Connell and her sisters

Mary O'Connell

Mary O’ Connell was born in 1900.  While still very young, she lost both parents, first her father, and under a year later, her mother. Mary had two sisters and thankfully, they were placed in the care of family and left with enough money to provide for their care and education.

On December 11th 1920, the night of the Dillons Cross Ambush, Mary O’Connell was serving at her Aunt Nora’s pub in Dillons Cross. Immediately following the ambush, the RIC (Royal Irish Constabulary) raided her aunt’s pub bringing with them one badly wounded officer. It was said of Mary, that her actions that night, saved the pub from being burned down.

A Photo of Mary O'Connell and her sisters
Mary O’Connell, centre with her sisters

Ann Dalton’s peom about Mary O’Connell can be heard by clicking on the blackberrry

A Photo of Nana Mac

Laura Eaton

Ann Dalton’s poem about Laura Eaton can be heard by clicking on the blackberry

Laura Eaton was born in Cork in 1876. At the age of 17, she married Florence McCarthy who worked as an engineer at the Gouldings chemical factory which was situated in the Glen. Due to her fear of rats, Laura refused to move into the Goulding’s engineer’s house in the Glen and instead opted to live at Florence’s family home, a more humble abode, on Sunview East, known at the time as the Old Glen Lane.

She became a widow while still young, and with four children to provide for, she had to think fast. She opened up a shop in her front room on the Old Glen Lane, soon becoming known for her mouthwatering cakes. She rose each morning to open the door of her small shop, the pennies she earned becoming the route to her family’s survival.

A Photo of Nana Mac
Laura Eaton (second from left, outside her shop on the Old Glen Lane)

About Ann Dalton

Ann Dalton is a writer and producer with a broad experience of working in the arts over the last 20 years. She began in the coffee houses of London writing and performing her poetry. Her poetry was widely anthologised and she went on to co-found and run a weekly acoustic music and performance poetry club Thalia’s.

On her return to her native Cork, she completed studies in Creative Media Production. She set up her own production company, Seoid Productions, initially working in audio, writing and producing numerous radio plays for children for RTE Jnr with BAI funding. She expanded into theatre, working closely with Cork based theatre company, Ocean of Notions, co-writing and producing numerous theatre productions for local, regional and international audiences.

More recently, she has worked as a TV producer on numerous historical documentaries for both RTE and TG4 with Cork based production company, Wonder Pics. Their most recent documentary, Radical Hearts/Croíthe Radacacha was screened at the Galway Film Fleadh 2023 and they are just about to embark on their first 10 part live action drama for children.

In her historical work, Ann likes to focus on the stories of both women and children, highlighting their voices and raising their visibility. In much of her writing for children, Ann is known for her funny, surreal and sensitive stories.

Ann Dalton portrait

FuaimMná Updates

a photograph of bronze plaques with womens names and QR codes

Blog Post

Here  is a blog post about the arrival of a weighty package and its contents – Bronzes on the kitchen table

Fuaim Mná has been kindly sponsored by a Cork City Council Arts Project Grant

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