For communities like Killorglin to survive against the often overpowering commercial pressures imposed by their larger, urbanised neighbours it takes an inherent, deep seated tenacity. To say that the industrial and economic success of the town came about as a result of being ably represented politically, at the right time – is true – but only part of the overall picture. This train of thought displays an ignorance of how these market towns, strategically set down at cross-roads, not only survive against fierce odds but indeed thrive. A cursory glance at the history of any such town will reveal the growing pains and battle scars endured by generations to get us to where we are today.
Rivers played a huge role in the establishment of trade centres and in Killorglin’s case the Laune with its link and proximity to the well sheltered Castlemaine Harbour must have presented a very attractive location to the first travellers – commercial or otherwise. Political historians will recall the late Timothy Chub O’Connor extolling the virtues of his native patch and he painted a picture with the kind of infectious enthusiasm that industrialists found impossible to ignore.
The vibrancy of the community is marked by the ever increasing list of events sprinkled throughout the year and the world famous Puck Fair has been added to by festivals like the ‘The Wild Flower of the Laune Vintage Harvest Festival’ and the recently revived Head of the River Regatta. The mammoth, annual undertaking that is the pantomime is yet another of the great logistical wonders so crucial to the survival of the spirit of community involvement.