1916 Open Weekend to attract crowds to Spike Island

Spike Island 1916, ‘Aud’ and War of Independence Prisoners Commemoration Weekend

Visit Spike Island, Saturday and Sunday, 17-18 September 2016



More than 10,000 tourists, have in August alone, clambered on to Spike Island in Cork harbour to view its vast heritage. Such is the attraction that a special weekend commemoration will drawn visitors for a series of talks and tours related to 1916, the Aud, and prisoners held there in “Ireland’s Alcatraz” during the War of Independence.




In 1921, approximately eight hundred Republican prisoners and internees were held on Spike Island. During this eventful period the island experienced two successful escapes, one internee was shot dead while playing hurling, and there were also hunger strikes and at least one full-scale prison riot. This is an opportunity to visit Spike Island and learn more of these dramatic events.


The weekend will include Irish Volunteers, RIC, Black and Tan and British Army re-enactors. There will be an exhibition of original artefacts from that period. Copies of six Spike Island prisoner autograph books, lists of the prisoners and internees imprisoned on Spike Island, and photographs of some of these prisoners will be on view.


During 1916 the crew of the gun-running ship ‘Aud’ and two senior Irish Volunteer officers, Austin Stack and Con Collins were imprisoned on Spike Island.



Boats to Spike Island will be departing from Kennedy Pier, Cobh on both days. The first boat will depart at 10.15, and thereafter on the hour from 11.00am to 3.00 pm.

Militaria and military books will be on sale during the weekend. For further details contact Tom O’Neill (stathan.t@gmail.com).

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