Wednesday 23 October 2019

Taghmon takes to the water in 'shed-built' currach

The Taghmon Men's Shed currach takes to the water after a summer of hard work.
The Taghmon Men's Shed currach takes to the water after a summer of hard work.

By David Tucker

the MATELOTS of Taghmon Men's Shed took to the waters of Slaney in 26-foot currach they built over the summer in a village not normally known for its boat-building prowess.

But all that has changed, with the successful sailing of the lovingly-crafter boat - flying its 'skull and crossed tools' pennant - on the Slaney, proving that where there is a will there is a way to make the waters part.

The community of Taghmon came out in force as the Shed members held an exhibition of their currach project before launching it on the Slaney in Enniscorthy.

Working with artist Andi McGarry, the men built the traditional boat over the past few months, the whole process captured in film and pictures and the exhibition consisted of the showing of a documentary, and a collection of photographs and the currach itself took pride of place.

The currach project which was funded and supported by Wexford County Council as part of their 'Artist in the Community Scheme'.

It was a new and exciting challenge for the men as they had never built a boat before and most of them had never been on one either!

One of the fledgling boat builders, Jim Morrissey said it was daunting at first 'as their isn't exactly a tradition of boat building in Taghmon'.

'But we have learned so many woodworking skills during our time in the shed we were actually surprised at how easy we found it,' he said.

One of the paddlers Peter Waters said 'we were a bit nervous at first but delighted with our achievement when we finished the journey'.

Speaking on behalf of the men Jim O'Brien thanked everyone for coming out to show their support and especially the local business in the community which sponsored the project also.

From its humble beginnings in Taghmon Family Resource Centre, the Shed now has its own premises two doors down on Joseph Street.

The men use their considerable skills to complete wood and metal work projects for the local community and have completed large woodcarving projects such as the statue of St Munn which is in the grounds of Taghmon National School and Parle, Crane and Hogan.

They also participate in a furniture making course in the Shed which is funded by Waterford and Wexford Education and Training Board through its Community Education dept.

The Shed is affiliated to the Irish Men's Shed association which is a national organisation for all Sheds. New members are always welcome to come and join the men on their next adventure.

The Shed is part of Taghmon Family Resource Centre and if anyone would like further information about the Shed they can contact Ray or Mary on 053-9134465.

The documentary film is now available to view on youtube as 'Taghmon Mans Shed Boat Project 2016'.

Wexford People

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