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Roscrea school introduces new Cunningham medal for history

Thursday, 9 November 2017

Roscrea school introduces new Cunningham medal for history thumbnailCarmel Cunningham and Dr George Cunningham presenting the Cunningham Medal to Gráinne McNicholas.

ROSCREA is known internationally as a town steeped in history and a place where the ancient past lives on and is celebrated often - so it is fitting that the town's secondary school should introduce a new special accolade for students who attain an exemplary standard in their study of history.
When speaking of Roscrea in the context of historical research, one name which will never be forgotten is George Cunningham, who has contributed more to the canon of historical study on Roscrea than anyone else.
Now, Colaiste Phobal have introduced the first Cunningham Silver Medal for History which was presented during the recent open night at the school.
Carmel Cunningham presented the medal and said she was 'particularly delighted' to be present the first Cunningham Medal for History, to Gráinne McNicholas on behalf of herself and George and on such an apt evening as the open night for new students.
“I taught in this school for over 30 years, when it was the Vocational School and loved every minute. Both our sons received their post-primary education here and I still call it 'our' school and am proud to be a former teacher of this institution," Carmel said.
“We are thrilled our archive pertaining to Roscrea and District is being safely housed at Coláiste Phobal, where students now and in the future, can avail of its contents for further studies and we are particularly proud that some 3,500 books of ours are now here for use of the staff and students," she said.
Carmel noted that all of the work in the Roscrea and District Archive is due to George's endeavours and diligence, and she said she is inordinately proud of him and the work he has done in Roscrea and District and much farther afield.
George Cunningham spoke of how delighted he was that a granddaughter of Ciarán MacNiocláis was the first recipient of the history medal.
The celebrated author who recently received an honorary doctorate from the University of Limerick, edited and published Ciarán MacNiocláis' two books on Muintir Ros Cré and said he had no doubt that Ciarán was smiling down on the occasion.
Mr Cunningham wished the first medal recipient, Gráinne MacNicholas, well in her studies at the University of Limerick and spoke briefly on the uniqueness of the archive that the students of Colaiste Phobal and staff now had at their disposal and said he dearly hopes it would be widely used to advance the education and knowledge of future Roscrea scholars.

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