Unveiling

Plaque to mark Carrick's literary heritage

Canon William Slator

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Plaque to mark Carrick's literary heritage

Author Michael Harding will unveil the plaque.

Sunday afternoon, 4th December, will see the unveiling of a memorial plaque to Canon William Slator (1909-2003), a much-loved individual who, in addition to serving 15 years as Rector of St. George’s Church of Ireland (and prior to that in Boyle and Kilronan), was a priest, poet, writer and musician.  

Carrick-on-Shannon Heritage Group and Carrick Historical Society join with St. George’s Church of Ireland Vestry in remembering Canon Slater, a man who brought so much joy and amusement to our area with his wit and friendliness.  His contributions to the Leitrim Observer made him known throughout the county and further afield.  Indeed, he was chosen as Leitrim’s Man of the Year in 1975.

This is just one of Canon Stator’s gems and recounts the changing of Leitrim’s County Town:

“Letter from a Carrick Girl to the Boy who went to America”

By William Slator

Dear Jack, it’s six years since you left us

To live in the U.S. of A.

We’ve missed you from Carrick-on-Shannon

Especially each Christmas Day

If you were to come on a visit

I’m sure most surprised you would be

To see all the wonderful changes,

But there’s no change, I’m hoping in me.

The harbour is now a “Marina”

With jetties that float up and down.

The jail’s disappeared from the skyline,

New shop fronts all over the town.

The road out to Jamestown’s been widened,

Shannon Lodge and O’Driscoll’s have gone,

The Main Street has got a new “Tavern”

But the Bush is still carrying on.

If you want a nice house with a garden

There are plenty beyond Summerhill,

St. Mary’s Close now has a roadway,

But the Church at the top is there still.

You can shop in the fine Supermarkets,

The clock on the tower’s always right,

There’s a new County Home for the old folks,

And the Swimming Pool Scheme has a site.

But still in Carrick-on-Shannon

The river still flows on its way,

The people are friendly as ever,

Prosperity’s coming to stay.

So won’t you come over this Summer,

And bring your new friends here to see,

There’s many a change in the landscape,

But none, I assure you, in me.

The event will take place at St. George’s Heritage & Visitor Centre, Church Lane, Carrick, at 3pm with the unveiling of the plaque by writer/playwright Michael Harding, and will be followed by poetry readings, music and light refreshment with compere Charlie McGettigan.  All are welcome to a lovely afternoon, remembering a lovely man and his contributions to the area.