Origins of Cork- Evening Lecture Series

It is with great pleasure that St Peter’s Cork have teamed up with the Department of Archaeology in UCC to deliver a series of animated talks on the history of Cork, entitled The Origins of Cork.

We will be hosting a a free lecture every Tuesday evening from 16th January for six weeks. Each evening, a new expert will sit with us to discuss a fascinating aspect of our city’s history.

With the great support of Professor William O’Brien we will be welcoming some excellent speakers to discuss specialist areas of our history. The full schedule is below and we invite you to join us in the deep midwinter, to sit around St Peter’s Cork and listen to rich stories of Cork City’s heritage.

Space is limited so please do arrive early for each talk, every event starts at 5pm sharp. We look forward to welcoming you there. For further queries on these lectures, please contact Eileen O’Shea, Programme and Event Manager at St Peter’s via email:

A series of illustrated public talks in January and February 2018 start at 5pm sharp on following Tuesdays:

16th January.  William O’Brien ‘A prehistory of Cork’

There has been a continuous human presence in the Cork region over the past 10,000 years. Most of this long period belongs to prehistory, the time before written records, which ended more or less with the arrival of Christian literacy from the fifth century AD. This talk reviews the archaeology of prehistoric people in the county of Cork, looking at their settlements and monuments, material culture and economy, social relations and religious beliefs.

William O’Brien is Professor of Archaeology in University College Cork

23rd January. Tomas Ó Carragáin ‘What might St Finbarr’s monastery have looked like?’

Long before the Vikings arrived, St Finbarr’s monastery was one of the most important settlements in early medieval Munster. Little evidence survives for its layout, appearance or scale, however. Using parallels from Ireland and abroad, this talk considers the sorts of buildings that might have stood at the site and the sorts of activities that might have taken place there. Through analogy, and a little imagination, the talk aims to give the audience a better understanding of this important but elusive phase in the city’s development.

Tomas Ó Carragáin is a lecturer in Archaeology in University College Cork.

30th January.  Maurice Hurley ‘The ‘origins and early development of Cork City’

Cork owe its urban origins to the influence of the Vikings; whereby seafaring Scandinavian people were instrumental in transferring influence from Britain and the Western European seaboard to Ireland. The earliest urban settlement in Ireland (Dublin) dates to the late tenth and early eleventh centuries. Settlement of undisputed urban character are archaeologically proven in Cork and Waterford by the mid eleventh century. The archaeological evidence stands in contrast to our traditional interpretation of historical sources which place the founding of the Viking ports in the early tenth century.

Maurice Hurley is a consultant archaeologist in private practice based in Cork.


6th February.  Rose Cleary ‘Archaeological excavations at South Main Street’

The Department of Archaeology, UCC, has been involved in Cork City Archaeology for over 40 years. Beginning in 1974 with excavations at Skiddy’s Castle, North Main Street, and in the more recent past on the former site of Sir Henry’s Nightclub on South Main St. The lecture on February 6th takes a look back at some of these excavations and will focus on the results from the 2004–5 excavation of the Sir Henry’s site.

Rose Cleary is a lecturer in Archaeology in University College Cork.

13th February.   Clare McCutcheon ‘Pottery and trade connections in Medieval Cork’

Pottery recovered from excavations conducted by the Department of Archaeology, UCC, the City Council, and commercial archaeology illuminate the trade connections between Cork, Britain and the Continent. It also provides a bridge between the medieval and post-medieval periods. This talk will highlight some of the exciting, unusual, as well as standard items.

Clare McCutcheon is a researcher of medieval and post-medieval pottery from Irish excavations.

20th February.  Colin Rynne ‘The early industrial heritage of Cork city’

From 1991–93 the speaker was Director of the Royal Irish Academy’s Industrial Archaeological Survey of Cork City and its Environs, which was published in 1999. In this talk he re-examines some of the main findings of this survey, in the light of recent evidence, and evaluates how the city has come to appreciate its industrial heritage over the last 25 years.

Colin Rynne is a senior lecturer in Archaeology in University College Cork.


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Cork City Musical Society

We are thrilled to welcome the Cork City Musical Society to St. Peter’s Cork this coming Saturday 16th December. The wonderful singers will be warming our venue with Christmas cheer as they perform a free concert of choral and solo classics.

The concert will run from 12pm-1pm and is completely free to all. There will be a collections box on the day going towards funding the Society”s 2018 musical. Join us and Portafilter for coffee, carols and culture this Saturday! A lovely break between rounds of Christmas shopping in Cork City Centre and the Old Town!

About Cork City Musical Society:
Cork City Musical Society was set up in 2015 as a community initiative by Cllr. Kieran McCarthy to foster social inclusion through musical theatre. To date, the society has put on four productions at the Firkin Crane, two musicals; Sweet Charity and Crazy For You and two concert revues; Dreams of the Soul and most recently Songs from the Heart last September. Each production has showcased talented performers from all ages, backgrounds and experience levels under the guidance of highly respected local professionals such as Michael Young (Musical Director), Aisling Byrne-Gaughan and Aileen Coffey (Choreographers).

The Society is currently engaged in a number of promotional and fundraising ventures. Our members have recently featured on the 96FM Opinion Line and the YouTube channel, TheLabTV-Ireland. They also performed at the Glow Cork Festival in aid of the Irish Lung Foundation. Its goal for 2018 is to put on a third full-scale musical production and to integrate further into the community of Cork City.


About the Performers

Denis Eivers:

Denis sang his first note at age 48 and was honoured to receive a principal part in his first audition with Fermoy Musical Society. He has gained further experience in Cork City Musical Society under the direction of Kieran McCarthy where he has played principal parts in Sweet Charity and Crazy for You. He sang ‘Take Me to the Church on Time’ from My Fair Lady at the Society’s most recent event, Songs from the Heart last September and wishes everyone a very Happy Christmas. His New Years’ Resolution? To get to the church on time!


Deidre McGerty

Deidre lives in Cork, has loved singing for a very long time and enjoyed performing in many school musicals. Her first foray into Cork City Musical Society was as the Receptionist in its very first musical, Sweet Charity. Subsequently, she enjoyed ensemble roles in further productions, became a founding committee member and a very enthusiastic carol singer at the Glow Cork Festival (and indeed, a very enthusiastic person all round!)


Tanya Adamson

Tanya Adamson is a classically trained performer, a drama teacher with Konfident Kidz; working with children ranging from different abilities. She is also a director, writer and composer. She has just completed her Bachelor of Arts (Hons) Degree in Theatre and Drama at the Cork Institute of Technology, Cork School of Music. Previously she has taught drama and singing with Star Camps and Wolfe Stage School and was the vocal coach for the McCarthy’s Talent Competition two years in a row. Other qualifications include Grade eight in both Drama and Musical Theatre with L.A.M.D.A. She has completed a summer course with Mountview London in musical theatre in 2010 and was chosen to train with European Creatives Futures Programme in Holland in 2014. In the summer of 2012 she had the opportunity to engage children and adults with special needs in drama, art and music during her position as Camp Counselor with Friendship Ventures in Minnesota U.S.A. Tanya has worked as a performer and a visual artist at Ireland’s major music festivals which include Body and Soul, Electric Picnic and Townlands. She has recently directed her newly written musical, The Many Hats of Ivy Rose O’ Rourke and has experience in performing in all areas of theatre spanning twelve years.


Jelena Belan

Jelena Belan has recently moved to Cork from Toronto, Canada. She has had a passion for musical theatre, singing and performance from a very young age. She has performed in theatres across Canada, the United States and Asia. She is excited to be a part of this production with past stage appearances in the “Blood Brothers” musical
and in other musical theater revues portraying characters like Mama Morton from “Chicago”, Rose from “Gypsy” and Nancy from “Oliver”. Jelena really enjoys the Society for their talent, enthusiasm, dedication and encouragement throughout their creative process.


Kevin Walsh

Kevin is currently concluding his postgraduate studies at CIT Cork School of Music, where he developed his passion for musical theatre and graduated with a First-Class Honours BMus training in singing under Robert Craig whilst also achieving the award of “Highest Placed Student” for three consecutive years. At present, he is the Public Relations Officer for Cork City Musical Society and very much enjoys seeking to further the Society and gain more performance opportunities not only for himself, but for the other members of the Society  too as he considers them his second family. He sang as a soloist at the Society’s first revue Dreams of the Soul in 2015 and subsequently played Sam in its 2016 production of Crazy For You. Previous favourite roles include The Wolf (Into the Woods / CIT Cork School of Music), Reuben (Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat / Everyman Theatre), Annas the High Priest (Jesus Christ Superstar in Concert / CIT Cork School of Music) and chorus roles in Cork Operatic Society’s award winning productions of Pagliacci and Der Vampyr. Kevin is also an avid soloist who looks forward to performing at weddings, releasing an EP of his original songs and partaking in the Society’s next ventures all in 2018. In his own words, “There’s no-go like all-go!”

Angelina Ryle

Angelina was so thrilled to join Cork’s Musical Society this year as she has always been a keen performer. She is a graduate of U.C.C’s Drama and Theatre Studies and of The Lee Strasberg Institute in New York City. She loves singing, dancing, acting, traveling and pretty much all the fun things in life. Angelina runs an Anti-Bullying programme called ‘Hero Starts With Her’ and spends her time working with girls in Schools across Ireland. The programme aims to prevent and combat the negative effects of female bullying while promoting kindness, courage and positivity. Angelina is so excited to be able to bring a little bit Christmas Cheer to Cork City this year by singing loud for all to hear. She wishes everyone a Magical Christmas and the Happiest of New Years!


Jelena BelanKevin WalshTanya AdamsonDenis EiversDeidre McGertyCork City Musical Society Logo

St Peter’s Christmas Market

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas…That means it’s time for a Christmas Market in our historic venue!

Browse the many and varied market stalls inside our church and find the ideal Christmas gifts and goods, all while listening to some festive tunes. Live music and some of your favourite recorded tunes, available on request, of course! O Come all ye shoppers on Saturday December 9th and rock around our Christmas market!

It’s a pleasure to be able to showcase some of the fine crafters and designers living and working in Cork. St Peter’s Christmas Market will play host to over 20 stall-holders on the day offering some wonderful Christmas gift ideas and a unique shopping experience. It’s especially nice to be able to meet and talk with the designers at the market, so drop in, say hello and bring your Christmas list!



Musica Orchestra Christmas Concert

St Peter’s Cork are thrilled to welcome back the ever-wonderful Musica Orchestra to ring in the festive cheer with a a lunchtime Christmas Concert. Proceeds from ticket sales are going towards a great cause, St Pauls School Special Olympics. It’s the perfect Sunday afternoon event, with fun and tunes for all the family.

Join us for a wonderful Christmas concert by Musica Orchestra! After a sold out concert in Cobh, the orchestra are back in the city centre by popular demand. Get the festive spirit with this special Christmas performance in our historic church.

MUSICA is a new Pop and Classical orchestra in Cork and they play a full range of music playlists including Pop, Classical, Film, Irish, Waltz, Latin, Rock and Roll.  MUSICA will create an enduring impression with excellent presentation and beautiful music.

Tickets are just €10 and can be purchased by phone/text to 086 894 8303 or 087 779 5031.
Or you can purchase your ticket from reception at St. Peter’s Cork.

For more information on the concert and the fabulous orchestra you can check out their website or email below:

Perceptions- A Group Exhibition

Throughout December a new group exhibition called Perceptions will take place in our Mezzanine Gallery. Artists Kathryn Cook, Joy McAllen, Karen O’Sullivan and Fiona Devlin will exhibit a gorgeous collection of new work.

This exhibition is happening in true St Peter’s Cork style, in early 2017 a local Artist and art teacher, Cora Murphy, called in to have a wander around St Peter’s. Like so many over the past year or two, Cora just wanted to have a look around, to find out what was going behind the big doors of the city’s oldest church.  The Programme Manager got talking with Cora and soon enough they were planning to arrange an exhibition of some of her art class student’s work. Her studio was just around the corner on Henry Street and it seemed like a great opportunity to collaborate with some local artist, literally artist working around the block!

Since then, one of the artists, Kathryn Cook has called in on several occasions, measuring the space, checking dates for install and launch and all the things involved with producing your own art exhibition. It has been great to get to know these local artists and a pleasure to close 2017 with a new collection of work from 4 local artists.

Do pop into the venue from December 1st to taken in the last visual art exhibition of the year here in St Peter’s, you’ll get a chance to speak with one of the artists too as they will regularly be on site!

Exhibition launches on November 30th and runs until December 23rd

Holly Bough Exhibition

HAPPY birthday to the Holly Bough!
The Cork Christmas institution is celebrating a big anniversary in 2017 as it chalks up its 120th year as an integral part of the city and county’s festive season. St Peter’s Cork is thrilled to be hosting the latest exhibition from the Evening Echo which looks at the touching and often thought-provoking images of Christmases past from the front pages of the Holly Bough.
Ahead of your visit to St peter’s to catch this gorgeous exhibition that celebrates all things Festive in Cork, check out these fun facts!
  • It was first published in 1897, by the Cork Weekly News, when it cost one penny.
  • The 1897 edition also contained a ‘Mission Statement’ which, apart from some technological advances in the printing industry, has continued unbroken down the ages.
  • It stated: “The Holly Bough has been produced entirely in this office, set with our type, and printed from cover to cover on our machines. Apart from its great literary merit, we claim that, from the typographical point of view, it is a distinct advance on anything of its kind previously attempted in the newspaper offices in this city. It is bright, novel, and original, and should at once win its way to popularity among the Christmas issues of the season. Encouraged by its success we will even do better in coming years.”
  • That 1897 publication also promised to carry “varied and most attractive entertainment and the work of some of the first story-tellers of the day” and contained a children’s section and puzzles.
  • A copy of that first edition was unearthed by Holly Bough reader Hugh Connolly in Ottawa, Canada, a few years ago, and the next evidence of the publication was in a photograph of Lower Glanmire Road in 1915, which showed an advert for it in the background.
  • In 1932, Thomas Crosbie purchased the title of the Cork Holly Bough from the Tivy family, former owners of the defunct Cork Constitution, for his Examiner and Echo stable.
  • At the time, the Examiner had its own, inferior Christmas product, known colloquially as “the Christmas number of the Cork Weekly Examiner” and for many years after, the Holly Bough had the strap-line “Christmas Number” to encompass both products.
  • The Holly Bough has appeared in all 120 years since it began, apart from during the Emergency (1939-45) and in 1948, when there was a paper shortage. The oldest copy in Cork City Library is from 1924, while reader Michael Lenihan contacted the Holly Bough this year to reveal he had copies from 1933 and 1935 in his care.
  • The printing of the Holly Bough in the days when it was produced on the Academy Street presses could often be a fraught process. In 1953, it took three days because of a breakdown in the process that stitched the publication together, and there were 15,000 spoils on the printing room floor.
  • Editors down the years have included Stephen Coughlan and Walter McGrath, and the Holly Bough’s continued success is down to hard work by generations of people, from writers to in-house editors and photographers, from printers to distributors, advertisers and contributors.

Irish Designer Sample Sale

We all love a good sample sale right? Well how about one featuring 11 deadly Irish designers? Bet that’s got you excited!

A word from the Orgnasiers:
“We’re delighted to be hosting a three-day sample sale on Thursday November 16th in the beautiful St peter’s Cork. Join us and the designers for the Aperol Spritz launch party with some serious tunage and late night shopping. We’ll even havePROPERCORN on hand to keep you fed while you browse the sample sale rails. Bring along your Mum, your sisters, your friends, your GBFF, your work colleagues, your fella, bring whoever you like, the more the merrier!”

Fashion Designers in Venue:  
Manley ///
Jill De Burca ///
Jill & Gill ///
Edge Only ///
Maria Dorai Raj ///
Ale Walsh ///
Jokamin ///
Theo & George ///
Coletti ///
Leonora Ferguson ///
Drift Knits ///

Running Times
Thursday November 16th /// 12-9pm launch party kicking off at 5pm
Friday November 17th /// 10am-6pm
Saturday November 17th /// 10am-6pm

Ten amazing Irish Fashion, Accessory and Jewellery Designers under one roof… you’d be cracked not to!

Cork Science Week

St Peter’s Cork is very excited to host an exhibition and series of talks as part of Cork Science Week. Focusing specifically on sustainability research and new energy and ecology efficient solutions for happy modern living, the exhibition and talks will be sure to inform, challenge and inspire.

About the Programme

We all want to live guilt free, but making big lifestyle changes can be difficult. Sustainability should be about creating opportunities, not about limiting possibilities. Join 4 UCC researchers who are attempting to use the powers of science and nature to enable us to ferment our way to foreign holidays, to use giant metal stomachs to power our buses, to recycle dairy waste into plastic, and use the slime from deep-sea creatures to make our stuff. All of this while ensuring that climate change won’t alter the flavour of your favourite merlot and peak oil won’t prevent you from buying the latest smart phone!

There is a fixed exhibition in St Peter’s from the 11th -15th November as part of Science Week. This is free and open to the public – just drop in. If you want to attend one or all of the talks, please register.

Lecture Series

  • Saturday 11th November at 6.30pm: John Morrissey presents his talk “Fermenting the Futre”
  • Monday 13th November at 6.30pm: Eoin Flynn & Niall O’Leary present “Sustainable Stuff”
  • Wednesday 15th November at 6.30pm: Jerry Murphy presents his discussion “Biogross or Biogas?”

Tickets are free but seating limited so you must register your booking:

Halloween Weekend Fun

Come visit St. Peter’s over the Halloween weekend! Our witch Pandora has plenty of Halloween activities ready and needs some help decorating our pumpkin garden!

Look around our spooky ancient building, graveyards and courtyards and join in, if you dare….!!


Pumpkin Painting & Decorating: Join us in decorating our mini pumpkins for our spooky garden at 12pm each day (Friday/saturday/Sunday.Monday!) Bring your own pumpkin for decorating if you like and take it home for your own spooky garden.

Spooky Quiz Trail: try our trail challenge, grab a quiz sheet and find the answers to all our questions to win a spooky prize!

Colouring-in Activity: head to our colouring table with lots of Halloween designs that need some colouring in!

Keep an eye out for mini paintings of Halloween characters hidden around our church, if you see one, you can keep it!

Visit our colourful and interesting exhibition that celebrates Mexican Day of Dead (la dia de los muertos) created in collaboration with the Mexican Community in Cork,  the Cork Hispanic Association, UCC and primary schools in Cork and Waterford.

And for a grown up visitors, sit in our haunted cafe and enjoy the best coffee in town listening to great jazz tracks…requests welcome as our resident DJ Pandora the witch will be only too happy to play your favourite jazz tunes.

All events are free and all are very welcome.

URBAN EXPLORATION: Photography Exhibition

We at St Peter’s Cork are delighted to welcome Ankie Janssen to exhibit her latest collection of photography, “Urban Exploration”, in our Mezzanine Gallery.

The photographs in “Urban Exploration” were taken in Asia, the United States and Europe. They are observations of urban life in three different continents, showing a glimpse of people’s everyday life and their environment. They showcase the extraordinary in the ordinary and have an appreciation for the beauty in all the things and people surrounding us. The photographs show both the variety and similarity of urban elements. Shadows play a large part in Ankie’s work, creating an extra layer and a graphic dimension to the images.

About the Artist

“Walking around a city with a camera makes you slow down and really take in everything around you. You can find unexpected beauty in the urban environment everywhere as long as you care about what’s around you.”
Ankie was born in the Netherlands and have been living in Cork for the last 18 years.  She focuses
mainly on dance and street photography. She has been doing street photography for the last 7 years and loves to observe the urban elements in cities and the people living in them.

Ankie is drawn to shadows and natural light and the shapes that are created by these as well as people going about their daily business unseen by others. This is her third exhibition.  Her first exhibition was in Filter coffee shop on George’s Quay and was a dance exhibition entitled “Inma”. Last year she also had a collection of street photography exhibited in Camden Palace.

The exhibition launches on November 1st and the reception runs from 5.30-8pm. Visitors will have an opportunity to meet the artist and get a first look at what will be an exceptional and engaging photographic exhibition.
The exhibition closes on 26th November and will run throughout the month.

As ever, our exhibition are free to enter and all are very welcome.