Folklore of Mayo Society
Cumann Bealoideas Mhaigh Eo
Criostoir Mac Carthaigh
UCD Delargy Centre for Irish Folklore
School of Irish, Celtic Studies, Irish Folklore and Linguistics
University College will give the next talk to the Folklore of Mayo Society - Cumann Bealoideas Mhaigh Eo on Friday April 27th at 8.00 pm in the Knockranny House Hotel, Westport.
Mayo's Skin Boat Tradition
The skin boat or curach has endured on Mayo's coast for hundreds, perhaps thousands of years. A light and versatile craft, it can be safely launched and beached in exposed places unsuited to heavier wooden boats. From the early years of the nineteenth century references to its use become more plentiful and detailed. In that time it has taken the place of wooden boats on certain stretches of the Mayo coast, a testament to its success as an inexpensive yet highly adaptable boat type. Its design and construction over the past 200 years shows remarkable diversity, from the great five-man salmon curach of the north Mayo coast to the sturdy modern three-man types widely used along the west coast of the county today. And while the design and the materials used in its manufacture have changed - fibreglass has replaced the older canvas and animal hide coverings, for example - the essential features of the ancient skin boat remain.