The Wicklow Wonder Women program of events will celebrate the centenaries of two local trailblazers and their fascinating place in Irish history.
As part of the Decade of Centenaries, Irish women's group Herstory, and Wicklow Arts & Heritage Offices have come together to produce Wicklow's Wonder Women.
The event on the 5th-6th November 2021 will celebrate the centenaries of two local women, Averil Deverell (1893 – 1979), the first Irish woman barrister called to the Bar in 1921, and Kate Tyrell (1862 – 1921), the first woman ship’s sea captain in Ireland.
"At the time, only men were allowed to be employed in these roles. Both women smashed the glass ceiling to rewrite the gender rulebooks for their professions, leading the way for future generations of female lawyers and seafarers", explained the group Herstory.
The Wicklow's Wonder Women program features a spectacular light show, historical talk, experiential Brehon Law Court workshop, and fascinating salon event.
Averil Deverell was Ireland’s first woman barrister and practiced the law throughout her life. Master storytellers CandleLit Tales will host a Brehon Law Court workshop at the Mermaid Arts Centre in Bray.
For centuries, Ireland operated without prisons or police, tackling legal issues through the Brehon law – a complex and fascinating legal code that focused on restorative rather than punitive justice.
In this workshop, participants will test out the Brehon law by holding their own trial. They will experience the similarities and differences of this approach to our modern legal system and will have a chance to explore a completely different approach to crime and punishment.
While the light show will see The Cove in Greystones illuminate with newly commissioned portraits of the local legends by artist Lauren O’ Neill. The heroines will be in lights again at 8.30 pm in Arklow Harbour, where Kate Tyrell navigated her ship ‘The Denbeighshire Lass’ across the Irish Sea.
In Arklow Library, Dr. Sinéad McCoole will discuss her research work on the Mná 100 project. She will welcome guest John Mahon, grandson of Kate Tyrell, who will be in conversation with Sinéad about his grandmother, her life, and her work.
The salon event will take place at the Whale Theatre in Greystones. This collaboration with Herstory will interweave lively conversation with performances by visionary local poets and musicians.
Wicklow’s Wonder Women is a timely tribute to two local heroines and hopes to inspire the public to become curious, research their own family tree and create future opportunities to celebrate more Mná.
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