Free festival of music, arts and heritage at Rosslare Harbour


Taking place on Friday June 17 and Saturday June 18, the Rosslare Harbour Festival will be “a mix of heritage, music, and arts all joined together by the port, the village”

mbracing Rosslare Harbour’s connections with French and Welsh ports it will showcase some of the best arts, heritage and music in the county with all events and performances free to attend.

The festival will open with the Irish premiere of At the Water’s Edge, a documentary produced by Ports, Past and Present which was filmed across five ferry port communities around the Irish Sea, Rosslare Harbour, Pembroke Dock, Fishguard, Holyhead and Dublin Port. It features local people with a passion for their town’s history and heritage telling stories about ginkgo trees, invasions, secret gardens, and one-eyed captains and their pet ravens.. This screening will take place outdoors on a big screen in the beach car park at Rosslare Harbour on Friday, June 17 evening at 8 p.m. The evening will close out with a short performance by Sarah Deevy, 2022 winner of Wexford’s Got Talent.

For families there will be a screening of the animation The Wexford Whale, a short animation written, directed, animated and edited by David Begley with music and sound design by Ruah Pearson which features drawings and animations made by David and the children of Scoil Mhuire Rosslare. The film showing will be followed by a storytelling session with Peter Stevenson, renowned Welsh story-teller who will share some Welsh and Irish sea folklore with attendees.

On Saturday at 12 p.m. there will be sandcastle building with prizes for the most interesting, and fun creations on the beach, everyone is welcome to make something mad, beautiful, fun or ferocious on the beach. There will also be face painting available for children at this event.

For those interested in heritage there will be a walk and talk with Oliver Doyle about the villages’ railway history, and the Enniscorthy Re-enactment Society will recreate the past by storming the beach like the Normans in 1169. They will be in full battle dress, providing fun for all the family. The Norman theme will continue in the Memorial Garden where Leo Coy will discuss their contribution to the heritage of the area. Leo will look at the lasting legacies of the Normans, primarily the names, where they come from and what they mean.

The Sea of Stories is a ceramic mural created by artist Robert Jakes which captures some of the wealth of heritage, wildlife and myth shared by Rosslare Harbour, Pembroke Dock and Fishguard. A copy of the work will be on display at the garden and Robert will share some of the stories behind it.

For the arts enthusiasts Peter Murphy will read from his new work We have always been your harbour which is set in Rosslare Harbour, this multi-disciplinary project (text, sound, film, performance, score) utilises the voices, dialects, stories, folklore and history of the south east coastal region. He will then talk about the work and how it was developed and tell a story or two that didn’t make it into the finished work.

There will be acoustic performers around the village on Saturday performing traditional Irish music and the closing event for the festival is a performance by Melanie O’Reilly of Songs of the Sea with her Celtic Jazz Ensemble. Over the course of the weekend there will also be a photographic exhibition exploring the history of the Irish Ferries crossings in the Rosslare Harbour Maritime Heritage Centre.

There will also be a Ports Past and Present Arts and Heritage Trail which will highlights the rich heritage of Rosslare Harbour and the Port. While also giving you the opportunity to interact with the artworks created for the Ports Past and Present Project.

For a full list of events visit

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