Monthly Archives: June 2016

June Update including AGM

Our recent June monthly meeting was a chance to compare notes and check out our diary of events for the summer. There are many events covering all kinds of interests happening all over the county throughout the summer months. Why not fill a car and head off with your friends for some phototherapy! Be safe wherever you go! We also had our AGM at this meeting and thank all who attended and volunteered ideas, time and insights into aims on improving our photographic skills for the year ahead.

Monthly Club Competition

ACTION copyMary H.jpgDIGITAL ART copySliotar Mary H.JPGOutstretched copyMairead F.jpgras copyJohn M.JPGStreetview copyMairead F.JPGfairy by Irina Duane (1) copy.jpg



We had a full house for the AGM in Town Hall Theatre and thank the outgoing officers for their help and support over the last term. We congratulate the incoming officers and wish them well in their positions. Life Honorary President: Sean Byrne; Chairman: John Foley; Asst. Chairman: Jim Kenneddy;

Secretary: Mary Herlihy; Joint Treasurers: Patricia Hurley, Máiread Forrestal: PRO: Noreen O’Brien; Event Organisers: John Murphy and Gerry Kenneally; Technical Officer: Irina Duane. Chairman Kieran Russell gave a comprehensive run down on club activities last year and complimented all members who took part in and helped in any way to make Deise Camera Club more accessible to enjoying the art of photography for all members. We had a particularly busy year with many trips, events and guest speakers adding to our working knowledge of the camera.

Our DIGITAL EXPRESSIONS II Exhibition held during the Festival of Food was again a fantastic success showcasing Waterford and surrounding countryside in all her glory. The many thousands of visitors were understandably wowed by the many consistently vibrant, inspiring and revealing images of a county with such a vast repertoire of natural beauty from our lush green mountains to the frothy white horses of the Atlantic Ocean crashing to shore along our blue flagged coastline. Looking forward to meeting all our supporters again at our next club exhibition soon! We sincerely thank Kieran for steering Deise Camera Club over the past two years. We have grown in strength and wisdom as well as in members, catering for the novice right through to the elder lemons who generously give their time to teaching anyone who needs a little guidance. Thanks Kieran for your gracious contribution in making Deise Camera Club stronger and richer in personality, focus and ability.


Monthly competition theme for June (5 x 7) was DIGITAL ART /PHOTO MANIPULATION. Congratulations to Irina Duane who claimed first place with ‘Fairy’, 2nd Mary Herlihy with ‘Sliotar and the Sparrow’, 3

Quarterly theme (12/10 x 8) was ACTION. Congratulations to Máiread Forrestal 1st place with ‘Outstretched’, 2nd John Murphy with ‘Pedal Heaven’, Joint 3rd Mary Herlihy with ‘Rás Peloton’ and Noreen O’Brien with ‘Zip Line Master’.

July’s theme is CELEBRATIONS … not the sweets but the occasion! There has to be plenty to chose from with all the flag waving over the past few weeks and of course its wedding season too! Expecting some great ideas for this topic!


New members are always welcome to drop into our meetings and check us out. We meet at 7.30pm the second Tuesday of every month in Town Hall Theatre, Dungarvan. Our July meeting is on Tuesday, 12th July. Looking forward to meeting both new and resident members there. Membership

is now due also! Reminder that we have many upcoming field trips and outdoor learning opportunities so keep an eye on your text messages and emails for club information


You can view our website at and follow us on FACEBOOK at DEISE CAMERA CLUB DUNGARVAN and you can contact us by emailing



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Deise Camera Club Trip to The Saltees

On the June Bank Holiday Monday morning members of the Deise Camera Club headed off early to Kilmore Quay to get the ferry @ 11.00 to the Great Saltee Island. This is the most famous bird sanctuary in Ireland and the islands, the Great Saltee and the Little Saltee, are one of the major bird sanctuaries in the world.


This is a private island and visitors are welcomed on the island from 11.30 am to 4.00 pm each day without any charge.  The crossing, across St. George’s Channel, in itself is interesting as there is no landing area or pier on the island so, therefore, the ferry docks at sea and everyone boards dinghies and head for the shore.  This meant clambering over rocks to get to the beach which was the start of the adventure. On the return journey the dinghies were pushed in to the shore to allow us board.  Following that we climbed the steps from the beach to head on the pathway to the cliffs, passing the private residence of the owners, the Neale family.  The original owner was Michael the First who was both a colourful character and a legend in his own time.

When Michael was 10 years old he made a vow to his Mother that one day he would own the Saltees and become their first Prince.  Twenty three years later he realised his dream but his coronation on the Great Saltee did not take place until July 1956.

A throne, flag-staff and obelisk were shipped to the Great Saltee; the obelisk bearing a plaque with his likeness in profile. The throne is a memorial to his mother and features a coat of arms and the following inscription:

“This chair is erected in memory of my mother to whom I made a vow when I was ten years old that one day I would own the Saltee Islands and become the First Prince of the Saltees.  Henceforth, my heirs and successors can only proclaim themselves Prince of these Islands by sitting in this chair fully garbed in the robes and crown of the Islands and take the Oath of Succession” ~ Michael the First.

One of the first jobs he undertook was the levelling of a field in the centre of the island as a landing strip for this private airplanes.  He learned to fly and regularly flew his Miles Messenger aircraft to the Islands.   For the 5 years up to 1950, over 34,000 trees and shrubs were planted on the island and the most successful of these were Cordyline Palms which flourish to this day.

An interesting historical fact: – in 1798 an island cave became a brief hiding place for two leaders of the Rebellion, John Henry Colclough and Bagenal Harvey. They took refuge in a cave on the Saltee Islands from where they planned to escape to France. They were betrayed, arrested and brought to Wexford town and were subsequently hanged. Folklore has it that soldiers saw soapy water coming from a cave where both men were washing which led to their demise.

The Saltees are a haven for sea birds from Gannets and Gulls to Puffins, Razorbills and Manx Shearwaters. They also lie on an important migratory route and a popular stopping-off place for spring and autumn migrants. The Great Saltee also has a breeding population of Grey Seals, one of the very few in eastern Ireland. Up to 120 animals are present in autumn and up to 20 pups are produced annually. In fact, we saw many seals bobbing up and down near the shores.

We walked through ferns, the last of the cobalt blue bluebells, and wild cow parsley to our first stop which was to photograph the puffins and as this coincided with a shower we also had an ‘al fresco’ brunch.  The puffins are amazing little creatures and very easy to photograph.  They were particularly pleasant shots available with their head peeping over the beautiful pink thrift.

We also managed to photograph gulls of very size and description, many of them very territorial as they were protecting their nests and their young. Some swooped down just above our heads as a “warning” to us to stay away and they certainly meant it.

I guess the highlight for me was the nesting gannets on the far side of the island.  Gannets are amazing creatures, large white birds with yellowish heads, black-tipped winds and long beaks; their wings can span 3 metres.  The name gannet comes from Latin which means hooligan as these birds can swoop into the water at a speed of 100 kms to catch their prey under water and can catch fish much deeper than most airborne birds.

The gannet’s supposed capacity for eating large quantities of fish has led to “gannet” becoming a disapproving description of somebody who eats excessively, similar to “glutton“.

These shots were difficult to obtain as there were so many of them and it was difficult to isolate a pair of gannets.  However, we tried our best. Even without a camera, this trip would have been a wonderful experience as this really was as close to nature as one could get.  We were at one with nature really and I think all of us felt the same.

It was an experience we will all remember for a long time to come.

“It was never my intention to make a profit from these islands. Day visitors are welcome to come and enjoy at no cost. Bird watchers will always remain welcome” ~ Michael the First

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