Banagher celebrates its 10th summer festival over the next two weekends.

To get full details go to the That Beats Banagher website where events can be viewed under highlights and timetable. The highlights are in six categories: water-based events, traditional skills, heritage, and culture, health and wellness, discovering your roots genealogy conference, and family events. Events can also be viewed under a detailed timetable.

The first weekend, Friday 14th to Sunday 16th July, will be given over to a multiplicity of events. Highlights include The Battle of the Blacksmiths where up to 40 blacksmiths will come to Banagher on Saturday and Sunday under the banner Forged in Ireland. Each day the smiths will provide a series of demonstrations of various aspects of their craft. From 1 p.m. on Saturday, the Golden Anvil challenge will present the competitors with a series of fast-paced forging challenges. A more artistic competition will be held on Sunday where the craftsmen and women will respond to the theme of ‘Bridges’.

The Battle of the Blacksmiths is supported by Offaly Local Development Company’s “Legacy” training program, aimed at preserving traditional skills and ensuring they don’t get lost in time. This project is funded through the Leader Rural Development Programme by Offaly Local Development Company. SEE more HERE 

More sparks will fly on Saturday night with the return of the spectacular fireworks display in Banagher Park on the west side of Banagher Bridge at dusk, roughly between 9 and 10 p.m.

The festival will open with a Martello Movie Night on Friday at 9 p.m. in Banagher Park. On Saturday a food and craft market will be held in the Library Square from noon to 5 p.m. Throughout the weekend there will be a huge selection of craft-based demonstrations and classes. Those into health and well-being should call to events in the Go-With-The-Flow area in Banagher Park. The first Shannon Valley Genetic Genealogy Conference will be held in The Crank House from 1 p.m. to 5.30 p.m.

The second weekend of the festival, Friday 21st to Sunday 23rd July, will be devoted to celebrating Charlotte Brontë and her husband Arthur Bell Nicholls of Banagher. The programme includes three films,  a tapestry and stitchcraft exhibition, three talks, two poetry readings, and two heritage walks. Speakers and readers include Maebh O’Regan, Eileen Casey, Frances Browner, Joanne Wilcock, Michael O’Dowd, Kieran Keenaghan, and James Scully. All events will be held in or start from The Crank House on lower Main Street. The events are free but donations will be most welcome. For full details go to the That Beats Banagher festival website in the highlights under culture and heritage.

For more information and to book click HERE


The renowned Martello Tower pop-up bookshop will make its first summer appearance over the next two weekends at the 10th That Beats Banagher Festival. The first appearance will be at the Food and Craft Fair in the Library Square on Saturday 15th from 12 midday to 5 p.m. and secondly at Charlotte Brontë events in The Crank House over the second weekend of the festival. The shop will have its usual stock of Irish literature, local history and heritage titles plus many more. As usual the shop is organized by James Scully. All enquiries to or ring 085 7107569.