Rhyme from 1920's about  Garda Callan

In Kilmihil of vulgar tongue the people do be spaking ‘O

And writin’ it on carts and things, a lot of bother making’ O

The Sergeant says ‘tis against the law, and he won’t be refuted O

The bound offenders, one and all, he has them prosecuted O

He’s down on pluckin’ geese alive, and usin’hooks for fishin’ O

Perhaps you cannot catch a fly without his permission O

In Eddie’s name he nabs his game at market, fair and races O

And in the court he makes great sport, when he presents his cases O

Composed by Jim Lorigan

Extract from the book  'Kilmihil Revisited' published by Kilmihil Active Retirement  2012

Kilmihil Garda Station 2017

In 2013 Kilmihil Garda Station was one of the 100 Garda Stations closed throughout Ireland. The Civic Guard (An Garda Síochána) had been a presence in the village since their foundation by Michael Collins in 1922, the closure on the 31st January 2013 saw the end of 91 years of Kilmihil Garda history some of which, along with the individuals who served, is recalled below.

To the delight of the community the station was reopened 25 months later on the 2nd March 2015 and Garda are once again part of the fabric of Kilmihil village life.

The Early Years

The job of the local Gardai in West Clare would not have been an easy one in the 1920s. The triangle between Kilrush, Kilmihil and Kildysart was considered particularly fractious with anti-government activity being widespread amongst local people. The Garda responded by moving extra detectives into the area to counter the republican threat and stepped up their attempts to stamp out the IRA. An indication of how difficult the role would have been was the murder on the 11th June 1929 at Tullycrine, of Detective Timothy O'Sullivan, a native of Cork based at Kilrush Garda Station. The story of his death is covered in a book by Colm Wallace called 'The Fallen'.*

 Garda Hourigan of Kilmihil  in 1940s

Garda Hourigan in the 1940s

An Garda Síochána officers recalled from the earliest days include Garda Murphy, Garda O’Riordan and Garda Callan. Garda Murphy was a great flute player who lived next door to Hibernian House in what is now the former Considine's shop; Garda Callan sounds to have been a very straight-laced man as borne out by the Jim Lorigan rhyme about him.

  • Sergeant Clarke came in 1925 and about that time Garda Tonroy was also based in Kilmihil.
  • Sergeant Meaney was appointed in 1928 and with him Garda Twomey and Garda Cuff. 
  • Sergeant McCadden, the next sergeant, was appointed in 1940 and later joined by Garda O’Sullivan, Garda O’Connor and Garda Hourigan.
  • Sergeant Connolly replaced Sgt. Mc Cadden around 1950. Garda O’Leary came to Kilmihil in 1952 and Garda Lennon in 1954.

The 60s, 70s and 80s

 

Sgt Dromey of Kilmihil 1960'sChristy O'Malley Garda in 1960s Kilmihil

During the 1960's there was a great turnover with Sergeants Curran, McGlynn, Dromey and Duffy serving at the station; among the Gardai supporting them were Gardai O’Dwyer, Sheehan, O’Malley and Foley.

Sergeant Shanley came to the parish in 1970, he was assisted by Gardai Halpin and O’Dwyer.

In 1973 Sergeant Burke was the man in charge, assisted by Gardai Halpin and O’Dwyer.

Sergeant Quinn came in 1974 and he was joined by Garda White.

From 1978 Pat McGuire was the Sergeant at the station.

Sergeant Gannon arrived in 1980 and was assisted by Gardai Higgins and Healy.

 

From 1983 until 1990 Gardai O’Shea and Healy ran the station.

Recent Years

1990 to 2001 saw Gardai O’Shea as the man in charge.

 

Garda Kenelly, who retired in 2012, was in charge of the station from 2001.

 

 

*Gardai Killed in Service 1922-49. In 1922 the fledgling Irish Free State decided to replace the RIC with the Civic Guard (An Garda Síochána). This new Irish police force found itself dealing with an unsettled population, many of whom were suspicions of law and order after centuries of forceful policing by the British. It was decided that the Gardaí would uphold the law with the consent of the people however, and that they would remain unarmed. This brave decision may have been popular with ordinary Irishmen and women, but it left members of the force vulnerable to attack and even murder. Many Gardaí met their death in the first decades of the Irish State. This is their story.