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Glashygolgan
Plumbridge
Co Tyrone
BT79 8DX






Field of Oats Project


For many years, oat production was an important feature in the lives of those who lived in Upper Badoney. There are many people living in the area today with memories of the processes involved in the growing of oats (corn), as well as the social interaction it created. Glenelly Historical Society sought to recreate that sense of rural community in their 'Field of Oats' project of 2007.

In early spring, a field in the townland of Glashygolgan was ploughed using the traditional horse and plough. The seed was sown from a fiddle and a cloth sheet, under the guidance of some our more senior farmers who have had 'experience in the field'. It was these men, whose willingness and enthusiasm in handing on their skills to a younger generation that brought life to the project.

The Ulster Wildlife Trust had a role in advising on environmental issues. Our field was registered as a BBC Breathing Place, allowing its progress to be monitored online.

Late summer say the harvesting, stooking, stacking and thatching of the corn. The mummers for Aughakillymaude, Co. Fermanagh arrived to perform traditional fertility rites in the field. Local people and others from nearby parishes danced and sang by the roadside that afternoon in September. It was easy to get a sense of Glenelly's rural community spirit and an awareness that in fact, it exists to this day.

Children from local schools were on hand at events. They played traditional harvest games, played music and sang songs.

A Big Night brought the project to a close in early autumn. Musicians from Tyrone, Fermanagh and further afield, provided a memorable evening of song and traditional dance.

Memories of that 'Field of Oats' will remain with Glenelly's people for quite a few years!

Copies of the hugely successful 'Field of Oats' DVD/ video are available in shops locally or from committee members.

Ambrose Mc Cullagh follows Bill and Sam.
Dermot O' Brien and Bertie Faulkner bring the seed.
Ambrose Mc Cullagh follows Bill and Sam.
Dermot O' Brien and Bertie Faulkner bring the seed.
Joe Mc Gurk sows corn with the fiddle Joe Mc Gurk sows corn with the fiddle
Joe Mc Gurk sows corn with the fiddle
Mickey Mc Cullagh sows from a sheet
Ambrose Mc Cullagh cutting the corn with a scythe. Méabh Murphy Michael Mc Cormack and Johnny O' Hagan make sheaves
Ambrose Mc Cullagh cutting the corn with a scythe. Méabh Murphy
Michael Mc Cormack and Johnny O' Hagan make sheaves
Eddie and John Mc Caffrey bind the corn Ivan Mc Kelvey and Arthur Mc Gurk making stacks
Eddie and John Mc Caffrey bind the corn
Ivan Mc Kelvey and Arthur Mc Gurk making stacks
Mary Mc Cullagh and Rose Mary Murphy serve tea to John and Eddie Mc Caffrey. Méabh Murphy Tea is served by Aisling Malanaphy and Rosemarie Bradley
Mary Mc Cullagh and Rose Mary Murphy serve tea to John and Eddie Mc Caffrey. Méabh Murphy
Tea is served by Aisling Malanaphy and Rosemarie Bradley