Des Branigan exhibition

News Type 
Tuesday, September 4, 2018
dlr Lexicon
Intro Text 

The launch of the exhibition Des Branigan 1918-2016 took place at dlr LexIcon on Monday 20 August. An Cathaoirleach Councillor Ossian Smyth launched the exhibition which was curated by Joe Ryan, Irish Coast Guard (retired), coinciding with the centenary of Des’ birth on 21 August 1918. The event included a rendition of the RMS Leinster anthem by William Byrne, the reading of a poem by Robbie Burns, a great favourite of Des Branigan by playwright Roseanne Lynch, concluding with the haunting Boatman’s Song by flautist Shay Page.

Des Branigan was an extraordinary individual who achieved great things as a seaman, trade unionist, archaeological diver and maritime historian. This exhibition conveys a man who was deeply interested in helping people and lobbying for important causes such as working conditions, anti-apartheid and maritime law. His role in bringing one of the RMS Leinster anchors to Dún Laoghaire forms part of his fascinating story. Also included is the Des Branigan maritime book collection (over 1,000 items) donated to dlr LexIcon in 2016 and catalogued in time for the launch of this exhibition. This exhibition is supported by Creative Ireland.

‘I have spent over 60 years in, on or under the sea!’ Des Branigan