Old Drogheda Society
Eamon Thornton of the Old Drogheda Society writes:
Old Drogheda Society Makes Historical Purchase adding To The Drogheda Museum Millmount Collection
On Friday, May 20th 2016, the keys of the Dennis F12 Fire Engine were formally handed over to the Chairman of the Old Drogheda Society Donnchadha MacRaghnaill by the Mayor of Drogheda Paul Bell.
The moment was captured in a photograph taken by the Secretary of the Society Eamon Thornton.
Delighted to announce that with the active input of Mayor Paul Bell, the historic Dennis F12 fire Engine has been purchased by the Old Drogheda Society [ODS] for formal accession into the collection of Drogheda Museum Millmount, which is run by the Society.
When it became known some time ago that the vehicle was due to be sold, it created much concern not only within the ODS but also in the general community. The resolution of the issue has generated a great sense of relief. Though it may not be feasible to store the engine in Millmount, it will be retained in Drogheda and maintained for the enjoyment of the people of the town.
When the Society was founded over half a century ago, one of its key objectives was to preserve the heritage of the town for its people and this remains one of its major concerns. In an era when much of our heritage is under threat, it is a very welcome development to be able to avoid this engine leaving the area and very possibly being taken abroad. The Society will now work on a plan to provide the public with appropriate access to the vehicle as often as possible.
Having the fire engine as a focus piece will allow for a presentation of the rich and lengthy history of the fire fighting service in the town. Indeed one of the highlights of the museum’s Heritage Day presentation in 2015 was the exhibition of some of the extraordinary remaining artefacts that illustrate the operation of the fire service through the ages. This exhibition created great interest and showed that Drogheda people and visitors to the town can appreciate the unsung work of the very brave and very skilled fire fighters who provide such a crucial service to the community.
The Old Drogheda Society would like to acknowledge the cooperation of the elected councillors and officials of Louth County Council and, in particular, the efforts of Mayor Paul Bell and Councillor Kevin Callan who were instrumental in facilitating the process that led to the retention of the Dennis F12 in the town.
It is hoped that this initiative is a precursor of a sharper appreciation of the importance of Drogheda’s history and heritage, the pressing need to preserve that heritage for present and future generations and the recognition of its role in attracting visitors to the area.