Scottish memorial site to commemorate Irish Famine victims announced

Scottish memorial site to commemorate Irish Famine victims announced

THE MEMORIAL site to commemorate Irish Famine victims in Glasgow has been announced. 

The Great Hunger Memorial Committee, Coiste Cuimhneachaín An Gorta Mór, has announced the memorial will be at St Mary's Church in Calton.

The commemoration will be a permanent memorial to those who died of starvation or were forced to emigrate during the Famine, including those who went to Glasgow.

The announcement follows two years of work to find a suitable site for a permanent memorial in the city to An Gorta Mór.

"This breakthrough in a two year logjam means that we can now press ahead with the long-awaited design competition and the programme of fundraising and educational tools which we have been unable to progress in the absence of a site," they said.

The memorial will also tell the story of how the Famine unfolded and its effects not only in Glasgow, but also across the world.

Speaking to The Irish Voice the Committee said this next phase of the project marks the crucial period in which the future memorial will be formed.

“With today’s announcement, we can leave the frustrations of the last two years behind and move forward with renewed energy and with enormous gratitude to the parish of St Mary’s in Calton, who have made the grounds of their beautiful and historic church available to us.

“Our forefathers and mothers arrived here and were assisted by their own community - including the parishioners and priests of St Mary’s - and other good people of the time, and the completion of our memorial will be achieved in the same way.

“It will be built and it will be erected, first and foremost, by the multi-generational Irish community in Glasgow, but the assistance of anyone, from whatever background, who wants to help us will be very welcome.

“We thank everyone who has contributed so far - both here and in Ireland - and we look forward to a host of fundraising and educational events which will culminate in achieving our goal; a permanent and dedicated memorial to An Gorta Mór in Glasgow, which will be sign to all the generations to come that ‘Glasgow Remembers.’”

The Committee said the 'first priority' is to get the design commission brief ready and out to interested artists and sculptors.

"We are seeking the required technical advice now and, as soon as we have that, we are good to go.

"The funds are in place and the site specifications are available so we do not anticipate any significant delay."