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Offaly History (short for Offaly Historical & Archaeological) was first formed in 1938 and re-established in 1969 and is located at Bury Quay, Tullamore, Co. Offaly since 1993(next to the new Tullamore D.E.W Visitor Centre).

We are about collecting and sharing memories. We do this in an organised way though exhibitions, supporting the publication of local interest books, our website Offalyhistory.com , Facebook, open evenings, our library and offices at Bury Quay.

Our Mission
To promote Offaly History including community and family history

What we do:

  • Promote all aspects of history in Co. Offaly.
  • Genealogy service for counties Laois and Offaly.
  • Co. Offaly photographic records for study and sale in addition to a limited number of publications on Laois and Irish general historical interest.
  • Purchase and sale of Offaly interest books though the Society’s book store and website.
  • Publication of books under the Society’s publishing arm Esker Press.
  • The Society subscribes to almost all the premier historical journals in Ireland.

Our Society covers a diverse range of Offaly Heritage:

  • Architectural heritage, historic monuments such as monastic and castle buildings.
  • Industrial and urban development of towns and villages.
  • Archaeological objects and artifacts.
  • Flora, fauna and bogs, wildlife habitats, geology and Natural History.
  • Landscapes, heritage gardens and parks, farming and inland waterways.
  • Local literary, social, economic, military, political, scientific and sports history.

Offaly History is a non-profit community group with a growing membership of some 150 individuals.

The Society focuses on enhancing educational opportunities, understanding and knowledge of the county heritage while fostering an inclusive approach and civic pride in local identity. We promote these objectives through:

  • The holding of monthly lectures, occasional seminars, exhibitions and film screenings.
    Organising tours during the summer months to places of shared historical interest.
  • The publication of an annual journal Offaly Heritage – to date nine issues.
  • We play a unique role collecting and digitising original primary source materials especially photographs and oral history recordings
  • Offaly History is  the centre for  Family History research in Counties Laois and Offaly.
  • The Society is linked to the renowned Irish Family Foundation website and Roots Ireland where some 900,000 records of Offaly/Laois interest can be accessed on a pay-per-view basis worldwide. Currently these websites have an estimated 20 million records of all Ireland interest.
  • A burgeoning library of books, CD-ROMs, videos, DVDs, oral and folklore recordings, manuscripts, newspapers and journals, maps, photographs and various artifacts.
  • OHAS Collections
  • OHAS Centre Facilities

The financial activities of the Society are operated under the aegis of Offaly Heritage Centre Limited, a charitable company whose directors also serve on the Society’s elected committee. None of the Society’s directors receive remuneration or any kind. All the company’s assets are held in trust to promote the voluntary activities of the Society. Our facilities are largely free to the public or run purely on a costs-recovery basis.

Acting as a policy advisory body –  Offaly History endeavors to ensure all government departments, local authorities, tourism agencies and key opinion formers prioritise heritage matters.

Meet the current committee:

Our Committee represents a broad range of backgrounds and interests. All share a common interest in collecting and promoting the heritage of the county and making it available to the wider community.

2017 Committee

  • Helen Bracken (President)
  • Pat Wynne (Vice President and Joint Treasurer)
  • Niall Sweeney (Vice President)
  • Michael Byrne (Secretary)
  • Lisa Shortall (Deputy Secretary)
  • Dorothee Bibby (Record Secretary)
  • Charlie Finlay (Joint Treasurer)
  • Darrell Hooper
  • Brian Pey
  • Fred Geoghegan
  • Noel Guerin
  • Henry Edgill
  • Peter Burke
  • Angella Kelly
  • Rory Masterson
  • Shaun Wrafter
  • Ronnie Matthews
  • Oliver Dunne
  • Ciara Molloy
  • Stephen Callaghan (Heritage Items)

If you would like to help with the work of the Society by coming on a sub-committee or in some other way please email us or let an existing member know.

+353-5793-21421 [email protected] Open 9am-4.30pm Mon-Fri

Members Outing: Dublin

Dublin (tour) Dublin, Ireland

Members Outing: Dublin From Tullamore railway station, and then by shared taxis, Dublin outing: Marsh's Library, National Print Museum, Little Museum of Dublin, the new headquarters of the Irish Georgian Society.

Tour -The Historic Sites of Kilcormac and Ballyboy

The Historic Sites of Kilcormac and Ballyboy. To meet in the grounds of the Catholic church at 3pm (ample parking). The Historic Sites of Kilcormac and Ballyboy to include the Catholic church, the parochial grounds, the Mercy Convent, Born na Mona housing and on to Ballyboy , the village, church, cemetery and old hall concluding…

Tour – Sites of old industries of Tullamore from malting, distilling to silk and glass.

19 August, Sunday, Heritage Week tour of Sites of old industries of Tullamore from malting, distilling to silk and glass. Michael Byrne and David Egan,  2 00 p.m. from O’Connor Square. This will include the old distillery, the brewery of P. & H. Egan, the tobacco factory of Goodbody, the tanneries, maltings and bacon curing in…

Tour – Durrow Monastic Site

Tour of the Monastic Site at Durrow and the Catholic Church and cemetery. Helen Bracken will meet callers to the old church from that time for a talk and tour of the site including the church, cemetery, High Cross and Holy Well.  

Heritage Week tour – The old industries of Tanyard Lane, Tullamore

Meet outside Tullamore Central Library, O’Connor Square, Tullamore at 2.30pm The tour will include talks by Noel Guerin and Dan Geraghty on Tullamore Bacon Factory; John Flanagan on Tanyard Lane industries from the 1960s; Michael Byrne on tanning, malting, brewing.

Heritage Week tour – the new Offaly Archives building

Meet outside Unit IF, Axis Business Park, Clara Road, Tullamore (opposite Glenwood) The tour will include a talk by Lisa Shortall – ‘Introduction to the new Offaly Archives’ Booking essential as the tour is strictly confined to groups of ten at 11am and 7pm. Booking at [email protected]; 05793 21421

Heritage Week tour – Offaly History’s library and exhibitions

Offaly History Centre Bury Quay, Tullamore, Ireland

Meet at Offaly History Centre, Bury Quay, Tullamore (beside Tullamore DEW). The tour will be of the library, exhibitions, and history bookshop of the society with a short illustrated presentation.

Heritage Week tour – Offaly History’s library and exhibitions

Offaly History Centre Bury Quay, Tullamore, Ireland

Meet at Offaly History Centre, Bury Quay, Tullamore (beside Tullamore DEW). The tour will be of the library, exhibitions, and history bookshop of the society with a short illustrated presentation.

Heritage Week tour – West Offaly castles, part 2

Crank House Banagher Main Street, Banagher, County Offaly, Ireland

One of the highlights of last year's Heritage Week was a tour of the some of the castles of West Offaly, including Garrycastle and Clonony. James Scully and Kieran Keenaghan return this year to tour some other notable castles in the district.   Saturday 24 August 2019 at 10.00 am to 5 pm Meet at…

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