My Department was involved as usual in the annual commemoration of the Easter Rising at the GPO on 4 April, 2010 and at the National Day of Commemoration at the Royal Hospital, Kilmainham on 11 July, 2010.
In addition, my Department has an allocation of €100,000 under the Commemoration Initiatives Fund within its 2010 Vote, to support individuals or groups in organising the commemoration of individuals or events of historic importance. An amount of €90,885 has been committed from this allocation to date. The projects assisted from the Fund in 2010 cover a wide range of commemorative initiatives and are listed in the schedule.
Ireland marked the bicentenary of the independence of Mexico, Argentina, Uruguay and Chile and the significant role that Irish born or Irish descendents such as Admiral William Brown played in their transition to independence.
The Government was represented in Argentina by Minister of State Dick Roche. Additionally, the LÉ Niamh made the first circumnavigation of South America and the first transit through the Panama Canal in a representative mission.
During the voyage, the LÉ Niamh visited Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Mexico and the United States. In addition to participating fully in bicentenary celebrations, the ship hosted a number of activities in conjunction with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Enterprise Ireland, designed to strengthen links with the region, and to encourage trade and marketing opportunities. In excess of 12,000 people visited the ship, including Ambassadors, Politicians, business leaders and senior Army and Naval officers.
Schedule accompanying PQ Reference 38170/10
Commemoration Initiatives Fund 2010: Projects / bodies allocated grant funding of:
1. €1,135 towards the restoration of the grave of John Moyney VC,
2. €2,000 to the Northern Ireland Building Communities Trust towards the publication of a book on the Famine, covering the Act of Union,
3. €2,000 to O'Brien Press towards the publication of a book on the experiences of Irish soldiers during World War 1,
4. €1,500 to UCC towards research work into the history of Ulster,
5. €1,000 to the Suffolk Historical Society for the 150th anniversary of the consecration of its local Church of Ireland,
6. €5,000 to the National Folklore Collection towards a publication to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the Irish Folklore Collection in 2011,
7. €23,000 to the Somme Association for a commemoration event held earlier this year in Gallipoli in recognition of the Irish men who fought and died there in World War 1,
8. €35,000 to the Institute for British-Irish Studies (IBIS) conference on "A Decade of Centenaries, Commemorating Shared History" — held in June 2010,
9. €3,000 to UCD to publish the proceedings of a joint conference held last year in St. Deniols Library for the bicentenary of the birth of William Gladstone,
10. €3,000 to the Campile Memorial Society towards a memorial garden and monument in memory of Irish victims killed there in 1940,
11. €2,000 to Marino College for a memorial garden and information wall in memory of those who died in the North Strand bombings in 1941,
12. €10,000 towards the Thomas Davis project in Mallow for the commemoration of the bicentenary of his birth in 2014,
13. €1,550 towards the Kennedy Memorial lecture series in Queen's University Belfast and
14. €700 to the Killure World War 1 Committee towards the erection of a memorial in Killure, Co. Galway.