I have been aware of Dublin’s Diving Bell since a lecture in 2002 at the Maritime Institute winter lecture series held at Stella Maris, Beresford Place. The lecture itself was pretty unremarkable but at the Q&A afterwards we learned that in the audience was Joe Murphy the last foreman/diver who worked on the bell until 1958 and his story was fascinating. He kept us there (willingly) for a long time talking and answering questions. Sadly, Joe passed away in 2010 but the memory of his story has never left me. I was fortunate to be in the audience this year when Betty Ashe cut the ribbon with Minister Paschal Donohue to open the new diving bell interpretive centre on Sir John Rogerson’s Quay funded by Dublin Port Company. I thought afterwards about the story and thought it would serve as a great way of introducing our latest venture of a tall ship for all of Ireland. So in about 60 minutes you will learn about the origin of diving bells, the commissioning of Dublin’s bell and its remarkable creator. The history of the Port it was created for and when it came to the end of its working life the various attempts at restoring it as an artefact of our industrial heritage. This involved many people along the way and their stories are in many cases just as remarkable. I hope you can attend one of the venues where this lecture will be presented for its own sake and as a platform to update you on the youth development project which underpins Atlantic Youth Trust who hope to take young people to sea for the next 30 years and bring them back as team players who will network across all that might divide them for the betterment of each and every one of them.
The lectures will be advertised on Lectures/Events in due course.
Joe Ryan, 9/11/15.