The first ever permanent exhibition on the Irish Flag will be officially opened this Friday, 23 February, at 2.30pm, by the Ceann Comhairle, Sean Ó Fearghail TD at the GPO Witness History Visitor Centre to commemorate the 170th anniversary of the first public flying of the Irish tricolour.
The exhibition has been installed by the Thomas F Meagher Foundation which seeks to promote pride and respect in the Irish flag and to better understand its importance in promoting peace and inclusion on the island.The Thomas F Meagher Foundation co-founders are Reverend Michael Cavanagh and Senator Mark Daly.
The centre piece of the new exhibition is an enormous polished black granite block with an exact typographical replica of the opening lines of the 1916 Proclamation where it states 'summons her children to her flag'.
This is then followed by the original quote of Meagher when he flew the flag for the first time in 1848 where he says: “The white in the centre signified a lasting truce between orange and green. I trust that beneath its folds the hands of the Irish catholic and the Irish protestant may be clasped in generous and heroic brotherhood.
Incorporating the latest touch screen technology, the exhibition will have information on the history of the flag. Visitors can also send via email the Irish flag protocols to themselves and students can see the new educational tools on the story of the Irish Flag which the Thomas F Meagher Foundation have put in place in conjunction with the Department of Education and Skills.
Schools from around the country that intend to participate in the Thomas F Meagher Foundation Flag Day event on March 16th have also been invited to the dedication ceremony by the Ceann Comhairle.
Commenting ahead of the exhibition’s launch, Senator Daly said: “Flag Day, on the eve of St Patrick's Day, is where schools sell lapel pins given free to them by the Foundation for projects, causes or charities of their choosing.
“As a result of students work promoting pride in and respect for the Irish Flag and its meaning for peace, they can become eligible for the Kerry Group award and scholarship."
If any schools would like to get involved, they should get in touch with the foundation at their website: www.tfmfoundation.ie