I am still buzzing. What an occasion, what wonderful contributions, what incredible historical information on the Cullotys and Collotys, what engaging and delightful photographs, what a magical family tree, branching out in all directions from a solid, strong and powerful root.

Will we ever realize the full impact of this day, this weekend, this Gathering?

What have we started? For we have all started something much deeper than any one of us, something spiritual even-death, resurrection and new life-encapsulated in love, in relationship and in care. There is Eucharistic thanksgiving, there is the communion of the living and the dead, and there is union of heart and mind that transcends all being.

I received a most beautiful poem today, written by John T O Halloran (Mary Bridget Culloty and John O Halloran, Baltovin), to honour the occasion of our Gathering. He rang me on my mobile and we spoke for about ten minutes about the magnificence of the event on Sunday, and its possible consequences and he offered to read the poem to me. It left me in tears while at the same time capturing the significance of the occasion both for himself and for all of us. I would like to share it with you.

As I write there is a knock on my door and who is it but Hugh Culloty. Hugh is absolutely thrilled at the course of events which has brought clarity and understanding of his own personal roots and the connections with the wider Culloty clan. I just love the impact it has had on him and his appreciation for the “incredible and unbelievable work you have done” (his words) and the amount of material and history put together for the day. He came by to thank me and to order three copies of the DVD (which will be available tomorrow morning!), and some copies of the Oakpark Culloty photographs. I actually received an email from Dublin airport on Sunday night from his daughter Tonia, as she awaited the call for her flight to Newcastle. Among her words were the following:

“I feel a huge gratitude to yourself and Jenny for the gift of connecting to roots I had no awareness of prior to yesterday. In my profession (Psychology) there is a resilience that is nurtured from being grounded in knowing yourself, and where you come from. Your work has gifted that to me and I will be forever grateful”.

They are similar to the sentiment expressed on John T’s beautiful poem.

Oh what a beautiful day it all was. Something beautiful has been sown, seed from that which has already been harvested. May it flourish and ripen forever.

If you require a copy/copies of the DVD use the Paypal link below or email me and this will register with Mike in Gurrane . Mike will then send the order to your home address by post.

It is actually brilliant!

Dominic Walsh was the photographer who took the photos on Sunday evening in Ballyroe

The photos are up on his website: www.dwalsh-photo.ie

Log in to the Client area. You will be asked for an email address. As soon as you give your email click on the Culloty Gathering Photos and they will open to you

If you wish to order any of the photos contact Dominic directly on his email address on the site

God bless all and thank you,


 The Culloty Heart.

My father was the son of a mother he never knew.

I was the son of a father I never knew, but he held me.

My sister was but a seed when our father died.

Since then we have both cried and survived.

But this week end a question was asked,

Who are we right now?

‘A Culloty’ we cried,

Feeling a pulsing beat,

And the tapping of feet

As words were forged,

Out of distant embers,

Always to be remembered.

From the North, South, East and West.

From where we have recovered our roots,

In a field, by a stream,

often in a dream,

Now of something foreseen,

Close to the Boreen

Of the Culloty heart.

John T O’Halloran nee Culloty.



I need to update you on a matter that may or may not concern you

  • A few people have suggested to me that perhaps I should have a photographer at the event. Some people might like to have a family photo taken on the day.I have asked Dominic Walsh to come and do the required if people want to avail of the opportunity and he will.Dominic is in Dublin on Saturday and Sunday but expects to be home for 6pm or so.Can I suggest that he try to be at the hotel for 7pm and that he takes photographs as requested between 7-8 pm?  It will be after our supper and we can hold off on the music for a bit and chat away. Take it that he will be there at that time and please have an idea of the photo YOU are looking to take-that will help. You can order and pay for your photos online direct from him afterwards. Thank you
  • I have forgotten to ask for a speaker from the O Halloran family of Baltovin. Believe me when I say that I woke up in bed at 5am this morning with a startling revelation that I had literally forgotten this Culloty family. With sincere apologies to the family of Babe O Halloran, I rang John T O Halloran this morning in England and he is delighted to speak on behalf of the family. His sister Jane Lawson is also coming.
  • In a conversation with Peg Mc Grath I learned that she and her partner are bringing two accordions to the gig!! This has the makings of a right good night I’d say!!

There will be no more until Sunday I promise..

Safe travel,


Re Saturday evening at Na Gaeil GAA clubhouse
I can now confirm that the wonderful O Shea family will perform live Traditional music and song for us for us at our get together on Saturday evening from 7:30 to 9:00 pm. This will be a wonderful addition to our evening-they are simply the best at what they do.
Thank you




Hello to all Cullotys and Collotys,

It’s a beautiful autumnal morning here in Gurrane-the sun is shining brightly; a gentle breeze is blowing; birdsong lifts to the sky in the still air as they sing heartily in the trees; leaves are beginning to change colour, preparing to move on to their next and natural state-as we all must.

But before that!

I am conscious that some of you are leaving foreign shores to travel to Ireland tomorrow and therefore this last update is going out today


A bus will be available at the Rail/Bus Station across from Centrepoint on John Joe Sheehy Road from 2pm. We will tour around to the various family locations-will walk for awhile at times. I am not asking any family to bring us to their family home-we are just going to familiarise ourselves with the location of our ancestors-see the fields they walked on and so forth. As we travel we will observe and comment on some interesting local sites-historical and otherwise. If the day is nice we will go for a walk on one of our beautiful beaches.


2:00pm-Gather at the bus station-depart 2:15 approx. It is accessible by walking anywhere from town. If your accommodation is outside the town taxis will be needed. If you need help ring me on 087-6383892

7:00pm: We will continue our familiarisation by coming to Na Gaeil GAA club, Kileen, Oakpark. Teas/coffees and sandwiches will be provided. Hopefully we will be joined by some “local” Cullotys at the Club. I am hoping to have some traditional music in the background but at present that is proving difficult-but we shall see …

9:00pm: Return to your accommodation as you wish


For those who wish to attend religious services in the morning please note the following:

Masses at St Brendan’s Church (upper Rock St) take place at 10:00, 11:15 and 12:30. The 12:30 Mass will include a special welcome for Culloty family members coming to the Gathering

Church of Ireland services at St John’s, Ashe Street, at 11:00am

Tralee Baptist Church services at 11:00 at Collis Sandes House, Kileen



Registration opens at 1:30. If already registered online sign in, receive your name badge and proceed to Hotel Ballroom and enjoy a leisurely stroll through the various displays.

If you are not already registered then make your payment at the desk, where your name badge will be written out. Then proceed to Ballroom.

At 2:45 pm all attendees will be asked to take their seats

At 3:00 pm Junior Minister for Tourism, Mr Brendan Griffin, will officially welcome guests and open the Gathering


  • 3:15 pm approx: Overview and historical presentation-Mike
  • 3:45-4:00 pm approx: Jenny Baldwin-New Zealand
  • 4:15pm approx: TJ Culloty Currovough
  • 4:25 pm approx: Mai Culloty Ballybeggan
  • 4:35 pm approx: Hugh Culloty Oakpark
  • 4:45 pm approx: Bianca De Bruyn South Africa
  • 4:55 pm approx: Fr Pat O Donnell Ballymac
  • 5:05 pm approx: Peg Mc Grath Baltovin
  • 5:15 pm approx: Nora Culloty America
  • 5:25 pm approx: Mary Abbey Canada
  • 5:35 pm approx: Mike Culloty Gurrane and Ballyroe

This is a broad outline of this part of the day. Some speakers will be shorter/longer than others –stick to the 10 minutes max as suggested please-and as you can appreciate times are approximate. As you can also understand food will be served after the family speakers conclude. The objective is between the 5:30-6:00pm marks.

  1. FOOD

A cold meat platter will be served between 5:30 and 6:00pm, served with tea/coffee and breads. Children will be offered one from a choice of chicken goujons and chips, sausage and chips or burger and chips.

  1. MUSIC

Music (DJ) will commence from 7:00pm-8:00pm as desired. This will conclude at 10:00pm approx. Thereafter it is hoped that the musical talents among us will play, sing or dance as the mood takes us all-do bring your own instruments please!


In the early days when we booked the hotel there was a function planned for Saturday Sept 22nd-which involved block booking and little availability for us. However this event has now been cancelled and there are special offers for B n B on the Ballyroe Hotel website for Sunday night 23rd, leaving 24th. Just letting you know.


Jenny and I were guests on Friday’s TALKABOUT programme on www.radiokerry.ie. The podcast of the programme is available at the above address-just follow the links if you want to hear it. Feedback says we sounded well, it provided good info on the Gathering and who’s coming, and one listener wrote in to tell the presenter that she remembered Culloty’s Corner well and taking shelter there from the rain!

  1. DVD Production

The filming of events at the Gathering will be packaged and produced within the following week. Orders for the DVD will be taken on Sunday. Price range will be around €10-12


In the event of people requesting copies of the restored photographs orders can be placed for the particular photo (s) you require on Sunday. Photos are displayed according to family location-eg Culloty Currovough, Culloty Gurrane etc. Each photo is numbered within that family unit.

To order therefore:

Name family location: New Zealand

Give the number on the photo: 5

Number of copies required: 1

Photo size: 8×12 prints @ €3-€3.50; 5×7 prints @0.40c each

Leave your postal address or contact details


A Comment book will be available in the room for your thoughts, observations and any possible information you may wish to share. Feel free to write as the moment takes you throughout the day/night


That’s about it for now and until we meet.

It’s wonderful to have met you online-I can’t wait for it to be in person-both old and new faces

We wish safe travel to all who are coming from abroad and from around the country.

May it be a Gathering to remember forever and please ensure that it is remembered for all the right reasons. We all share in that responsibility.






God bless,



Wednesday Sept 12TH

The Culloty Gathering is at last just around the corner … it’s only 11 days away!! It’s getting really exciting at this end-hope you are feeling the same way wherever this finds you…

This will be the second last update. I will send one more on Monday or Tuesday of next week … and then I’ll see you all on the 23rd Lord willing.

  • The Paypal facility for registration has now been removed. Thank you all so much for facilitating organisation by using it to register-all 125 of you. It has been wonderful to see the names coming in-encouraging and affirming. Thank you again
  • The numbers break down as follows by direct link with family location: Currovough-34; Gurrane 33; Ballybeggan 21; America 8; Oakpark 8; Baltovin 8; South Africa 5; Ballymac 3; Canada 2; New Zealand 2; Ballyroe 1-welcome all
  • Arrival on Sunday without Registration: Please note that if some family member wishes to arrive at the Gathering on the 23rd without having previously registered, he or she may do so. Turn up at the Registration desk, pay by cash and receive your Name Badge.


Arrival on the Day

The schedule for the day will appear on next update. For now please note that the registration will open from 1:30pm on the Sunday. Go to the desk, identify yourself, receive your Name Badge and proceed to the main ballroom at your leisure. Take in the photo wall, the history wall and the tree wall. Seating will commence at 2:45 pm and formal proceedings will commence at 3:00 pm sharp, with Minister Griffin.

Saturday September 23RD


Final plans for a Saturday event will follow in final update. However for now the possibility of the following event is being planned:

  • From 2:00 pm: A bus will be arranged to take our International visitors around to the various family locations-places such as Currovough, Gurrane, Ballybeggan, Ballyroe, Baltovin, Ballymac, Oakpark-from whence the present day families came.
  • This will be quite informal, may involve some walking if the day is fine, and will acquaint people with places and each other before the Sunday
  • In the evening at around 7:00 pm we will meet at Na Gaeil GAA Clubhouse for a continuing getting to know you session. Light refreshments will be provided and beverages will be available in the bar. It is hoped that some of the local Culloty descendants will drop in to say hello and meet and greet our visitors.
  • Getting you back to your accommodation will be arranged as suits by taxi or otherwise.

If you (Local or International) wish to avail of this time together I would appreciate if you could let me know by email response:

Bus tour: Yes or no

Informal meeting at Na Gaeil: Yes or no

Both Tour and Na Gaeil: Yes or No

Any further details will be made available on next update.

  • On another point if you are coming from overseas and wish to contact me on arrival please do not hesitate to do so. My mobile is 00-353-87-6383892 and you have my email.


Jenny Baldwin and I will take part in Deirdre Walshe’s Radio Kerry programme TALKABOUT on this coming Friday sometime after 2:00pm. The programme runs from 1:30 to 3:00pm. If you miss it live it may well appear on the Podcast of the show.  www.radiokerry.ie

Travels in the Kingdom

Jenny and Gwylym have been busy visiting parts of Kerry-all of which is very beautiful. Dingle, the Conor Pass, Gallarus Oratory, Slea Head, Killarney, The Gap of Dunloe, Torc Waterfall, Muckross House, Kenmare and Sneem on the Ring have all received these visitors with customary Irish hospitality, good food and a bit of craic. Despite the inclement weather at times they love our county.

I shall see them tonight when we meet at Culloty’s Corner before heading to Sean Og’s or the Brogue-or maybe both!- for a Trad session (traditional Irish music/song etc)

Farewell for now. I am pleased to say that everything is in readiness for the day and awaits your presence.

New Zealand v South Africa on Saturday morning-can’t wait!!

God bless and take care,


Friday Sept 7th

Dear Cullotys/Collotys and all descendants,

What a week it’s been! Jenny arrived on Monday evening, and if meetings at the Gathering with people we have never met before in any way resemble our first and subsequent meetings, then we are all in for a treat.

On Wednesday Jenny visited us at Gurrane (Mike and Mag), arriving at 11am. The video organiser “interviewed” Jenny and I for awhile; took shots of all the photos which will be on display, after which Jenny and Gwylym enjoyed a traditional dinner of bacon, turnip, cabbage and potatoes, fresh from the garden.

The rest of the day became a talking shop as we traced Culloty family history in Ireland, New Zealand and South Africa, until about 7pm. I am beginning to think I should have arranged a two day Gathering!!

On Thursday we visited Listellick National School (built in 1969) and inspected the Roll Book which showed her great grandmother Kate CULITY (as spelled) present at school in the mid 1870’s. We also inspected the site of the Old School –now converted to a modern dwelling house-with its ever present headstone marking the year of 1864. On the 150th anniversary of the foundation of the school in 2014 a specially formed committee produced a publication commemorating   the events of Listellick 150. Our forebears learned to read and write here. Jenny was presented with a copy of the book on the site of the old school.

Having left the school we headed to the ancestral home of Catherine Culloty who emigrated to NZ in 1883. Our hosts, TJ Culloty and his wife Celia, were engaged from the beginning on the history of the NZ Cullotys. Again there was catching up, confirmation of people, of births, deaths and marriages, and emptying of the memory banks. Teas and refreshments-including a delicious home baked pie and scones-only induced further talk about the past and the present.

Jenny, Gwylym, Mike and Mag are having a 40th wedding celebratory meal in the West End Bar and Restaurant in Fenit tonight Friday. We both married in August 1978; only about a week apart-how unreal is that?

Tomorrow morning (08:00) we will be stuck in the Rugby match between NZ and Argentina. The sausages will probably be burned! Come on the Pumas!! (I will be murdered for even thinking such a thing!)

Family “Talkers”

In no particular order, the following are the people who will share a little bit of information and recall of their earliest times “at home”. Time allocated is 5 minutes minimum, 10 min maximum.

Currovough: T J Culloty

Ballybeggan: Mai Culloty Buckley

Ballymac: Fr Pat O Donnell

Ballyroe: To be decided

Oakpark: Hugh Culloty

America: Nora Culloty

Canada: Mary O Regan Abbey

South Africa: Bianca De Bruyn

New Zealand: Jenny Baldwin

Baltovin: Peg Mc Grath

Thank you all for obliging to our request and remember there’s no pressure-only a time limit! I have a bell which will sound when it’s time to go!!

Name tags

Name tags will be distributed at the signing in. The name of your home place-your roots-will appear on the name tag above your name. This will facilitate recognition, conversation and identification. You are all asked to wear these on the day.

That’s why also I need all the names when you register, whether that is for one person or four. Registration closes on Sunday night, local time


I am pleased to inform you that we have 105 fully registered with two days to go. This is just fabulous as far as I am concerned and thank you. The day will not disappoint-that’s a promise.

Stay connected to the site for further updates next week

Monday Sept 3rd
This week sees the arrival of Jenny Baldwin in Tralee for a three week holiday in Kerry, culminating in the Ballyroe Heights Hotel Gathering on September 23rd. It marks the fulfilment of a 40 year long dream to return to the place of her great grandmother’s birth in Currovough North, Tralee.
It will be great to meet with Jenny this week and finally have a face to face chat about everything we have both learned from one another and others on the topic of the family history of Currovough North. The family trees, the photo exhibit and the historical information will make it a day to remember forever on the 23rd.
The response to the Gathering initiative is wonderful and please note that Registration online closes on next Sunday, Sept 9th, when the Paypal link will be removed from the site.
It’s getting very exciting now as we close in on September 23rd. We have 80 people officially booked online for the event at this stage and all others intending to join us in Ballyroe are requested to to register this week through http://www.michaelculloty.com.
Culloty descendants from as far afield as New Zealand, South Africa, America, Canada and England will be in attendance and engaging with all our local and national Cullotys from Kerry to Dublin, Cork to Kilkenny.
Enjoy the photos online-a taste of things to come!


31st August

I am pleased to tell you that on the eve of the Close of Registrations 85 people have already registered for what will be a great occasion.

I expect there are more out there who have yet to register but who plan on attending. For their sakes we are extending


The Colloty family of South Africa will be represented; the New Zealand Collotys will be represented; the Collotys of America will be present; the Cullotys of Canada will be represented; the Cullotys of England will be represented.

Nationally we have participants from Tralee, Dublin, Waterford, Cork, and Kerry and I am sure there are a few more still to be added.

Everything looks well for the big day:

– The Family trees from 1799 will take a bit of digesting but look really well;

– The Photographs each have their own story to tell and will engage the mind and loosen the tongue in conversation with those beside you

– The material on history will excite, amuse and inform in equal measure-I hope!

Personally this has been an enthralling, exciting, informative and, at times, a very emotional journey. Ancestors who have gone before me have come alive; I understand my own place in the Culloty Tree-the Tree of Life; and I have learned of cousins as far apart as New Zealand and South Africa that I never knew existed. I hope you will be able to enjoy and share in some of this type of engagement on Sunday 23rd.

I will keep you posted by email and on the website between now and then-


Encourage final online registrations among your families please -I need numbers for the hotel –thank you



Wednesday August 29th
  • Arrangements are being finalised for the videoing of the events on Gathering day with a view to producing a DVD for future reference
  • Music will be provided on the evening of Sunday 23rd September. Of course, we expect that the musically talented among us to add to the entertainment!
Thursday August 23rd
  • Registration Closing DateJust to remind you all that we are seeking registrations and payment by September 1st. Thank you to all those who have already done so.Can those who intend coming on September 23rd please register by due date.Thank youRegister Now
  • Organisation and plans are proceeding smoothlyThe 20 metre long presentation of family trees has gone to print and will be ready within a week or soThe photographs are to hand and will be sorted in the next two weeks for displaySome historical materials have been secured for observation on the day
More updates next week

August 1st

  • The Culloty family trees are completed by Jenny and Mike. Sincere gratitude is expressed to all who have undertaken the task in their own families and shared with us. The fruit of this work will be visible to all on September 23rd. These will be printed in due course.
  • The photographs kindly shared with us have been examined and 60 photos will be restored and printed for display. Some photos received are incapable of restoration and a selection has been made that reflects as many of our families as is possible. This work will continue during August.
  • The Minister of State at the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport has confirmed his attendance at the event. Mr Brendan Griffin, TD will perform an official opening and extend a warm welcome to visitors and participants from home and abroad.
  • At this point in time we can confirm that Culloty descendants will be travelling from San Mateo, California, from Bristol, England, from Ontario, Canada, from Shepparton, Australia, from Geraldine, New Zealand, from Dublin, Ireland, and from Castletownroche, Cork! There remains the possibility of South African Cullotys attending.
  • Calling all LOCAL and NATIONAL Cullotys:
    • the Currovough Cullotys
    • the Gurrane Cullotys
    • the Ballybeggan Cullotys,
    • the Rock St and Oakpark Cullotys
    • the Ballyroe Horgan Cullotys
    • the Ballymacelligott O’Donnell Cullotys
    • the Baltovin McGrath Cullotys
  • Finally for now can we ask all of you familiar with the site to connect with your extended family members concerning the event itself, the location of michaelculloty.com and the need to register through the website.
  • Thank you all