The Clifden Workhouse, often associated with the Great Famine, continued to be a significant presence in Connemara during the early 20th century. Even in 1911, the workhouse housed sixty-four inmates, primarily elderly and sick individuals from various parts of Connemara. When the workhouse eventually closed down, the remaining inmates were relocated to the county home in Loughrea or the asylum in Ballinasloe, both located miles away from their families and the familiarity of their homeplace.
Kathleen Villiers-Tuthill, an author with a deep understanding of Connemara’s history, will deliver an illustrated talk shedding light on the workhouse’s final years and its closure under the Free State government in December 1921. With her expertise and knowledge, Kathleen provides valuable background information on this significant aspect of Connemara’s past. In addition to her writing, she also leads historical walking tours in Clifden during the summer months, further sharing her passion for the region’s rich history with visitors and locals alike.