Remembering the Boys of Ballisodare Festival

Remembering the Boys of Ballisodare Festival

The organisers of the County Sligo festivals, which ran from 1977 to 1982, are looking for memories, images and any other artefacts relating to the events.

The organisers of the Boys of Ballisodare Festival, which ran in the County Sligo town from 1977 to 1982, are look for memories, images and any other artefacts relating to the festivals.

Founded by two brothers, Kevin and Philip Flynn, the festival was the first outdoor festival in Ireland to follow the ‘tented village’ model. Performers at the festivals included Planxty, The Bothy Band, Clannad, Paul Brady, Martin Carthy, Noel Hill with Tony Linnane, Christy Moore, Mick Hanly, Tommy Peoples, Donovan, Freddie White, Tony MacMahon and many others.

The organisers, who describe the events as ‘as much a sociological phenomenon as a musical one’, recall the challenges of staging a festival of its kind: ‘The tents themselves created a major talking point because no one had seen them that big before in the Ireland of the day. In fact, we had to come up with our own cross-shaped layout of a twenty-pole marquee tent as not even the circus had one that was large enough. And as for Portaloos and other necessary facilities well they weren’t readily available either and we had to construct our own.’

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Published on 14 July 2011

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