View this site:
As Gaeilge
In English
Sailing Update
Ship Position
Cape Clear Island
Fastnet Tours
Customer Charter
School Tours
Packaged Tours
Cartoon History
Our History
Photo Gallery
Island Map
All Ferry Services
Schull Ferry
  Successful new book by Fachtna Ó Drisceoil has strong West Cork connections

A Garda from West Cork was involved in the disappearance of a postman in Co Waterford in 1929 according to a new book The Missing Postman – What Really Happened to Larry Griffin? by Fachtna Ó Drisceoil. Garda Ned Dullea from the Dunmanway area and two other West Cork Gardaí were dismissed from the force as a result of the events in the Waterford village of Stradbally. The postman Larry Griffin left the post office in the village of Kilmacthomas on Christmas day to deliver mail to the neighbouring village of Stradbally but he never returned home that night. Suspicion first fell on Garda Dullea when he tried to conceal from his superiors that he was in the company of the missing man in the centre of Stradbally on the evening of Christmas day, and that they had entered the local pub together. According to Ó Drisceoil’s book, Larry Griffin was killed as a result of an altercation with two other local men during an illegal drinking session in the pub, and all those present conspired to cover up his death and dispose of his body in secret in order to protect their own jobs. Those involved included Dullea, another Garda William Murphy, and the local school headmaster Thomas Cashin. A local man Jim Fitzgerald gave the Gardaí a statement implicating all of the suspects and they were arrested and charged with murder. However when Fitzgerald took the stand in a Waterford courthouse, he refused to stand by his statement. Without a witness and a body the case collapsed and all the accused were released. During the Garda investigation it came to light that discipline had totally broken down in Stradbally Garda station. There were revelations of drunkenness on duty, dereliction of duty and falsification of official records. As a result the entire contingent of five Gardaí was dismissed from the force. As well as Dullea, another two of the five local Gardaí were from West Cork Gardaí – the Sergeant James Cullinane and the barrack orderly John Sullivan. After his dismissal ex-Garda Dullea returned to his home place at Gloun, Lisbealad, Dunmanway. According to Garda files which Fachtna Ó Drisceoil gained access to in researching his book, the local gardaí in Dunmanway kept an ‘unobtrusive watch’ on him in the hope that they might pick up some information in relation to the missing postman case. Dullea wrote to local TD Jasper Wolfe, asking for his assistance in getting him reinstated in the force, but Wolfe’s representations on his behalf were unsuccessful. Ex Garda Sergeant James Cullinane returned to his home place of Caherbeg, Rosscarbery, where he worked on the family farm with his brother Mick. Ex-Garda John Sullivan suffered most of the three men as he was married and had young children at the time of his dismissal. The family were separated for a while with the parents trying to scrape a living in London and the children back in Ireland with grandparents. Eventually the family returned to Sullivan’s native Bere Island. Sullivan believed he had been treated very unjustly and spent many years making representations trying to be reinstated in the Gardaí. All three men have passed away. The author of The Missing Postman, Fachtna Ó Drisceoil, has strong West Cork connections. His father Seosamh is from Durrus and his late mother Peig was from Inchigeela. His brother Séamus Ó Drisceoil lives on Cape Clear Island and is one of the owners of the island’s ferry service. Fachtna himself worked for several years as a campsite warden on Cape Clear. In 2009 he made a television documentary in the CSÍ series for RTÉ television about the killings of Protestants by rogue IRA elements in the Dunmanway area in the 1922. He also made a documentary for RTÉ about the traditional West Cork boats known as Towel Sail Yawls in 2003. The Missing Postman – What Really Happened to Larry Griffin? by Fachtna Ó Drisceoil is published by Mercier Press.

email:   telephone: 028 41923