Kitty Hennessy

Interview by Lorraine Hughes on December 4, 2013

Gender: Female

Birth date: 1928

Area: Ennis

Report date: December 9, 2015


Time Description
File 1 0:00:00 - 0:10:48 LIVING IN LONDON - Kitty was born in 1928 in Kilmihil. She lived there until she was 19. She went to Roscommon and did and year and a half baking course. She then went to London when she was 20. She worked as a waitress in restaurants there. She says there was no work in Ireland at the time. She worked in Hammersmith Broadway for a Greek man and she would go dancing to the Hammersmith Palais in the afternoon and back to work again for the evening. If they had Sunday's off they would go to the Garryowen. The danced foxtrots and waltzes, no jiving. They came home on holidays every year. Her sister joined her in London and they both met their husbands there. Her husband worked on the buildings. He was from Carrigaholt. Her sister married a Wexford man. Kitty got married in Brook Green church. She had her honeymoon in Ireland. They travelled the whole of West Clare on a scooter. Her son was born in the Park Royal Hospital.
0:10:49 - 0:15:25 CHANGES - They moved back to Ireland in the 1970s. They renovated a house Cusack Road. After that they moved to Inch but moved back to Ennis again. She says that you nearly need to make an appointment to visit anyone now. She thinks people were more relaxed in the past. She thinks there are too many gadgets. People would come to their house when she was young and they would play cards.
0:15:26 - 0:18:54 DANCES - She recalls how the men would come across and ask the girls to dance. She says they would walk two and a half miles to the dance hall in Kilmihil with wellies on. They would change in an old shed before the dance. It cost half a crown to get in and it would be on until one or two in the morning. She says you couldn't imagine them doing that today.
0:18:55 - 0:22:05 FARM WORK - Kitty speaks of going to the bog and cutting the hay. She thinks the weather was better then. They would go barefoot to school. She recalls the days they had in the bog. They would have to help their father with the potatoes.
0:22:06 - 0:23:37 CHRISTMAS - Kitty says at Christmas they would get a present from the shop.
0:23:38 - 0:26:40 JOURNEY TO ENGLAND - Kitty says that when they were leaving for England, Kevin O'Neill would take them to the bus. She describes the journey to London. She lived in Perivale for about 15 years.
0:26:41 - 0:28:49 WORKING IN CLARE - When she came back to Ennis she worked in the Golden Grill in O'Connell St. It was the Bínsín Luachra at one time. Her sister opened a pub in Kilmaley-it's Henchy's now.

Archive conditions of use

Cuimhneamh an Chláir provides access to these transcripts / recordings on the understanding that they are for personal use.  If you wish to use the material in any form of research, publication or presentation online or in person, you will need to specify that use and seek specific permission from Cuimhneamh an Chláir at [email protected]


Your request will then be reviewed by Cuimhneamh an Chláir and will be subject to a licensing agreement (at no cost).


Please enter your email address here to indicate your agreement to the above conditions. We will retain your email in accordance with our privacy policy.


Enjoy the archive!