independent

Friday 15 December 2017

Global flavour for Wexford family reunion

By dAVID TUCKER

Bridget Rossiter.
Bridget Rossiter.
Tacumshane Windmill, one of only two in Ireland in original condition. It is of Dutch design and is very similar to one in the grounds or the Groote Schuur Hospital in Cape Town, South Africa.

A Wexford family is planning a major reunion with long-lost relatives thanks in part to an appeal carried in this newspaper.

Three weeks ago, the last surviving grandchildren of Wexford man Richard Lawlor, whose naval journal from 100 years ago is kept in the County Archives, said they were trying to make contact with family members still living in the county.

Alan Mann, from Brisbane, in Australia and his sister Teresa, who lives in Tuscany, said they were planning to visit Wexford in June and wanted to link up with any family members.

Last week, Wexford town resident Phil Keeling made contact with them as a result of the article and now another descendant, Oliver Doyle, called from Mauritius in the Indian Ocean to garner further information about the appeal. Phil and Oliver are organising a reunion of the Lawlor (Lawler) family descendents at Tacumshane on June 14, and will be contacting all the family members in Ireland and abroad inviting them to attend.

'Our great-grandfather was James Lawler who was the miller at Tacumshane Windmill,' Oliver told this newspaper. 'He married Bridget Rossiter and they had 10 children.'

Oliver said Maesteg in the Rhonda in Wales was a popular destination for young men in South Wexford to emigrate to as work seemed always available in the coal mines. 'Three sons of James and Bridget went to work there, but there was a lack of communication and after they married and had children in school all named Lawler.. the children ascertained they were first cousins,' said Oliver, the grandson of Mary (nee Lawler) and John Doyle, who lived at Drimmag, Rosslare.

William Lawler joined the Royal Irish Regiment and was killed in action in the Somme in France on July 14, 1916. He has no known grave and his name is inscribed on the Thiepval Memorial near Ypres.

Wexford People

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