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Photography : Sean Smyth Last Updated: 2, Apr 2018 - 10:02

Lake Swimming 60s - 70s
23, Jun 2013 - 10:01

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Swimmers at the lake from the late 60s or early 70s.

Can you identify them?

Below are some of the postings on the Nostalgia Board in response to this photo which was featured on the front page on 18th June 2013:

Posted by BrIan Hoban on June 21, 2013 at 14:24:38:

Thanks to Sean Smyth for posting this photo. It is the first time i have seen this pic. It was taken on the occasion of a swimming gala organised by members of Castlebar Swimming Club under the auspices of the I.A.S.A..

I remember most of the names , They include front row left to right myself(Brían Hoban)., David Gilligan, (????), Patrick Heraty, (????)

Back row Miockey Guthrie (Snr), Chas Guthrie, Donal (Skinty)Mc Ellin,John Mc Ellin, Iarla Mongey, Joe Touhy, (????), Jimmy Tuohy.

At a guess i would say 3rd right front is Ray Caulfield and last right is Karl Caulfield.

You can see a tent in the background a tent which some of used to rent from Chris Conlon, The Curragh and often spend weeks at Lough Lannagh .

Some of the above were among the first to campaign for a swimming pool in Castlebar and organised a fund raising campaign for the provision of the pool, which was eventually opened in its present location beside the old Tennis Club.

Photo brings back fond memories of the great times we all enjoyed at Lough Lannagh.

Posted by Alan King on June 22, 2013 at 20:15:33:

Hi Brian, I wonder if the swimming gala you mention took place in 1962 as this was part of a huge fundraising event to raise money for a swimming pool to be built in Castlebar. Not any old pool, but one designed by a J.F. McCormack, Architect from Dublin & based on the Olympic Pool at Melbourne and incorporating international standard measurements. After years of debate, the local UDC announced plans for a swimming pool to be built in the town.

Castlebar Development Association was behind the plans & managed to get the Dept.of Health to transfer a 2-acre site from St.Mary's Hospital to them at Lough Lannagh. The cost was estimated to be about £21,200 & the plans included a toddler's pool, car parks, dressing rooms, spectator's stands, filtration & chlorination plants.

There was great joy in the Town with this news & a model of the proposed pool even went on display in one of the shops in Main Street.

The amazing thing about this project was that it was not supposed to cost the ratepayers a penny & that all costs would be raised by the above organisation by the holding of carnivals, draws & pools.

Fundraising began with great gusto & an event called the "Gigantic Holiday Festival" took place in the Military Barracks with various bands, a fair, fancy dress, etc & a swimming gala took place up in Lough Lannagh.

A sizable amount of money was raised but nothing near what was needed. The U.D.C had given an undertaking that no ratepayers' money would be spent & so plans were scaled down.

Eventually, the committee realised that they couldn't raise the money & as a result, the project was shelved and that's when Castlebar lost its chance to have an Olympic sized swimming pool. The town had to wait until 1966 when a pool was built in St Bridget's Crescent.

Posted by Roadeo on June 19, 2013 at 23:41:52:

I think the two on their hunkers in the center of the photo are in the left corner the famous Bull Gannon RIP and in the right corner the legendary Skakey Cresham RIP.

Posted by sloopjohnb on June 19, 2013 at 10:41:30:

Extreme right kneeling down, karl caulfield.

Posted by Michael Farrelly on June 19, 2013 at 08:34:27:

Greetings from Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam,

In the featured photograph I think that the gentleman with the beard is John McEllin of Balla, and the gentleman to his left is his brother Donal.

Posted by Mitch on June 18, 2013 at 23:26:54:

Some wild guesses here! Back. M. Guthrie snr, Chas Guthrie, Donal McEllin, John McEllin, ?, ?, Shay Murtagh.
Front, B. Hoban, D, Gilligan, Ger Gavin, Patrick Herity. ?

Posted by 6 Pack Smitwicks on June 18, 2013 at 20:52:27:

F: Brian Hoban, David Gilligan, ??, Paukie Heraty & ??
B:Hero Guthrie, Chas, Skinty, ??, Iarla Mongey, Roche?, ??, Callaghan.

Few left yet.

Posted by Hogie Jumps on June 19, 2013 at 13:27:19:

back row: 3rd from right Joe Touhy, and on back right Jimmy Touhy.

front right: James Cahill.

Posted by David Gilligan on June 23, 2013 at 00:27:58:

b. r. Mickey Guthrie, His son Chas, Donal McEllin R. I. P, John McEllin, Iarla Mongey, Joe Tuohy, possibly Justin Clarke, Jimmy Tuohy.
f. r. Brian Hoban, David Gilligan, Ray Caulfield, Pat Heraty R. I. P. , Karl Caulfield.

The occasion was a swimming gala hosted by Castlebar Swimming Club as an affiliated club of the Connaught Branch of the IASA. The year was probably 69 or 70. Participating swimmers were from clubs in Galway, Sligo. Loughrea, Castlerea, Longford and Carrickonshannon. Back then only three clubs could host galas in pools - Castlerea, Longford and Sligo. Skinty won Connaught Championship Gold medals for the 100m freestyle, and butterfly in Longford around that time.

The Lake Swimmers thread is still open on the Nostalgia Board for any additional comments or information.

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