43rd Annual Business Meeting
President Thomas Murphy & Pat
Hon. Warren Conklin & Joey
Chancellor Derek W. Hunt & Amy
Hon. David McEachen & Peggy Ann
President-elect Wendell Mortimer & Ceil
Hon. Judy Ryan & Patrick
Secy-Treasurer Tully Seymour & Jan
Hon. Robert Soares & Punky
Hon. James Stotler
Hon. Dickran Tevrizian & Geri
Ms. Diane Bowen, Chief Administrative Officer
Mrs. Jean Godfrey & Barbara Godfrey Kuykendall
DAY 1: Fellows arrived and transferred to the Europa Hotel in Belfast. The afternoon was free to explore the downtown area. In the evening the group met for a Welcome Cocktail party in the hotel followed by a Welcome Dinner at the famous Mournes Seafood Restaurant. All IATJ members were given a souvenir clock with the Academy logo as a trip memento.
DAY 2: The group visited the Royal Courts of Justice, and were welcomed by the
Lord Chief Justice of Northern Ireland, the Rt Honorable Sir Declan Morgan,
President of the Courts and Head of the Judiciary of Northern Ireland.
Lord Chief Justice Morgan is responsible for representing the views of the
Northern Ireland judiciary to Parliament and the Northern Ireland
Assembly and Ministers, the maintenance of appropriate arrangements
for the welfare, training and guidance of the judiciary, and deployment
of the judiciary and allocation of work within the courts. He is also
Chairman of the Judicial Appointments Commission for Northern Ireland.
Also greeting the Academy judges were Lord Justice John Gillen, of the Court of Appeal, Mr. Justice Donnell Deeny and Mr. Justice Seamus Treacy, Judges of the High Court, and Judge David McFarland, the Recorder of Belfast and Presiding County Court Judge.
The Courts of Northern Ireland are responsible for the administration of justice, and since 2009, are referred to as the Court of Judicature, consisting of the Court of Appeal, the High Court of Justice and the Crown Courts. The Supreme Court of the United Kingdom, which is located in London, hears appeals from the Northern Ireland Court of Appeal, and in 2009 took over the appellate jurisdiction formerly vested in the House of Lords in the UK.
The Northern Ireland Court of Appeal, consisting of three Lord Justices, hears appeals from the Crown Courts, High Courts and County Courts. The Crown Court has jurisdiction to try more serious criminal offenses. Lord Justices of Appeal, High Court judges and County Court judges may all sit in the Crown Court from time to time, although cases involving more serious offenses are assigned to more senior judges.
The High Court handles substantial or complex cases. It is divided into three divisions: a Chancery Division, which deals with business disputes involving land or property, bankruptcy and probate, the Queen’s Bench Division which handles contracts, damages, medical negligence, and appeals from the County Court, including judicial review from lower courts, and the Family Division which encompasses matrimonial matters and Care and Protection dealing with persons who require the protection of the court.
The County Courts are the main civil courts, and while higher value cases are heard in the High Court, County Courts hear a wide variety of cases of lesser value, substance and importance and complexity relating to civil actions, consumer claims and appeals from Magistrate Courts. There are seven County Court divisions in Northern Ireland.
Lord Chief Justice Morgan welcomed the group with tea and biscuits and explained that the Royal Courts building opened in 1933 and was designed “in a style intended to convey the dignity and tradition of the law.” The building has 11 courtrooms used by the High Court and the Court of Appeal. Next door is the Laganside Courts opened in 2002 which houses six Crown Courts, five County Courts and five Magistrate Courts. The Laganside Courts have the latest technology which allows for presentation of digital evidence and video testimony from anywhere in the world.
The Lord Chief Justice discussed the busy schedules the court keeps and explained what cases were currently pending in the courts. He discussed the Diplock cases, and how the Northern Ireland courts applied them. Lord Diplock submitted a report to Parliament in 1972 addressing the problem of dealing with Irish republicanism terrorism common in Northern Ireland. He recommended jury trials should be suspended for crimes connected to terrorism because of the “danger of perverse acquittals” by juries and “jurors being threatened.” The report recommended that cases be tried by a single judge in a Diplock court. Lord Chief Justice Morgan explained judges applied the law correctly and without bias, tended to acquit more often than juries, and gave reasons for their decisions to safeguard the appearance of propriety. He noted that Northern Ireland is getting over the “Troubles” which peaked during the 1970s, but cases were still being heard into the 1990s. He also noted there are still some demonstrations or parades, with 13 miles of peace walls still in Belfast, and some still struggling to put the Troubles in the past.
Judges do not participate in plea bargains, but will indicate how they might rule when the plea is dealt with in open court. Opinions are published in virtually every decision. In the Court of Appeal, while all three judges usually agree on the opinion, it can be a majority opinion. There are eleven Supreme Court Justices. The Supreme Court usually sits as five judges, but can sit as seven or nine. In the Brexit appeal it will sit as eleven. The Lord Chief Justice then answered some queries about Brexit and noted that Northern Ireland referenda doesn’t have any official status. He believes Parliament will probably vote against Brexit so it is an interesting situation, making the court decision very important. IATJ President Tom Murphy thanked the Lord Chief Justice and presented him with a commemorative US National Parks book, and a certificate making him an Honorary Member of the IATJ. The other justices were given an IATJ clock as a thank you gift from the Academy.
Justice Gillen of the Court of Appeal spoke to the judges, saying he has spent nineteen years in the court, six years in Family Law. He headed a review of Family and Civil Justice which implemented reforms to fast track cases in “problem solving courts,” using technology to enable social workers to give the court updates via the internet to speed up efficiency. The reforms call for a greater focus on mediation to be funded and supported by Britain and the Republic. “If you invest to save, the long term outcome will be enormous in terms of children being kept out of the criminal justice system.” An article on Justice Gillen’s Review entitled, Major overhaul of Family Courts could Achieve Better Outcomes for Children was subsequently emailed to the Academy judges.
Following the meeting with the Justices, the Academy members observed a Court of Appeals case, being heard by three justices, and then walked next door to the Laganside Courts, which houses 17 criminal courts. Academy members observed a murder trial in a security courtroom in which testimony was taking place. The spectator section of the courtroom was separated by bullet-proof glass.
After the court visit, the group enjoyed a “Black Taxi Tour,” which involved groups of four in vintage black taxis taking a driving tour of Belfast with a driver providing an overview of the Troubles. The historical conflict took place from the 1960s through the 1990s between Protestants who considered themselves British and wanted Northern Ireland to remain in the UK, and Irish Republicans, mostly Catholics, who considered themselves Irish and wanted to leave the UK and join a united Ireland. More than 3,500 people were killed during the conflict. The Troubles touched the lives of many in Northern Ireland on a daily basis. There are still walls and barriers that separate neighborhoods, and many murals depicting events. There were several cease fire agreements to the conflict, and in 1998 a Good Friday agreement was established which restored self-government to Northern Ireland and withdrawal of British troops. Academy members later discussed how even-handed the taxi drivers presented the historical facts, leading many in the IATJ group to remark that they had no idea if their driver was Protestant or Republican.
Following the Taxi Tour, the group visited the Titanic Museum, located in the original White Star Line buildings and overlook the launch slipway and dock of the RMS Titanic. The Titanic ship took three years to build in Belfast, and most living in Belfast at the time knew someone who worked at the shipyard. The people of Belfast were “devastated” when they heard of the sinking. The museum has nine interactive galleries telling the story of the Titanic, including the shipyard building, the launch, the “fit-out,” the maiden voyage, the sinking and aftermath, myths and reality, and the discovery of the wreck in 1985 and subsequent recovery. This was a not to be missed museum and enjoyed by everyone.
In the evening the Academy dined at another renowned Belfast restaurant, Deanes. Professor Gordon Anthony, from the Queen’s School of Law joined the group and spoke to the judges. Professor Anthony was in the first group of Irish Externs (sponsored by the Los Angeles Irish Bar Association) to spend a summer in Los Angeles and work at the United States District Court. He was assigned to Judge William D. Keller. He presently teaches Public Law and has held various visiting positions in multiple countries. His work on judicial review has been cited on numerous occasions by the Northern Ireland High Court and Court of Appeal.
DAY 3: The Group enjoyed a full day of sightseeing including a private tour of the Bushmill Distillery and a visit to Giant’s Causeway, declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1986 and considered a natural wonder. Carved out of rocks along the coast (by the mighty giant Finn McCool), the Causeway is a glimpse into the cooling and shrinking of successive ancient lava flows. The tops of the columns form stepping stones that lead from the cliff foot and disappear under the sea. Most of the columns are hexagonal, but some have four, five, seven or eight sides. The tallest are about 39 feet high, and the solidified lava in the cliffs is about 92 feet thick in places. The bus returned the group to Belfast via the scenic coastal route.
DAY 4: In the morning the group left Belfast for Dublin, and upon arrival enjoyed a private tour of Kilmainham Gaol. First built in 1796, Kilmainham Gaol was called the "New Gaol" to distinguish it from the old prison. It was originally run by the Grand Jury for County Dublin, and the front of the prison was used for public hangings. There was no segregation of prisoners; men, women and children were incarcerated up to five in each cell, with only a single candle for light and heat. The prisoners spent most of their time in the cold and the dark, and each candle had to last for two weeks. Its cells were roughly 28 square meters in area. Children were sometimes arrested for petty theft, the youngest said to be seven years old. Many of the adult prisoners were transported to Australia. During the Great Famine, Kilmainham was overwhelmed with the increase of prisoners. The prison is most famous as being where the Irish Republican leaders of the 1916 Easter rising (protesting English rule) were executed.
The Gaol was restored and now houses a museum on the history of Irish nationalism. An art gallery exhibits paintings, sculptures and jewelry of prisoners incarcerated in prisons all over contemporary Ireland. Kilmainham Gaol is one of the biggest unoccupied prisons in Europe, and has been described as the “Irish Bastille.”
The group enjoyed free time in the Dublin city center and then checked into the Herbert Park Hotel.
DAY 5: In the morning the group visited the Four Courts where they were greeted by Retired Judge Bridget Reilly and Elisha D’Arcy, Protocol Officer.
The group met with Mr. Justice Paul McDermott and Mr. Justice Brian McGovern, of the High Court to discuss mediation and arbitration in Ireland. They were later joined by Mr. Justice Paul Gilligan. Justice McDermott explained that mediation in Ireland has been a cultural change late to develop, particularly in family law, but has gained ground with solicitors advised to engage in arbitration and mediation outside the courtroom. Over the last ten years much more value has been placed on the process. In the commercial courts, court rules direct that parties go to arbitration. Mr. Justice Peter Kelly, the President of the High Court, was the first person to institute this. The system is entirely voluntary with counsel, solicitors and barristers advised regarding mediation, and the courts encouraging people to take that route. Justice McGovern noted Ireland does much less arbitration than the U.S. or Germany, but arbitration is cutting down on the number of cases filed in the court, and more contracts are being written with an arbitration clause. When these cases come into court, the court will stay the cases and direct parties to arbitration. There is no appeal to the court from an arbitration, and courts will usually support the award unless there is willful disregard for the law, then the court could set aside the agreement. Ireland is very arbitration-friendly and hopes for more international work. It is beginning to be perceived as a neutral English-speaking venue and cheaper in some cases than larger courts. The judges enjoyed further discussion of arbitration and mediation. IATJ President Tom Murphy presented Justice Gilligan and Justice McGovern with Honorary Member certificates and a National Park Commemorative Book in appreciation for taking the time to meet with the Academy group.
The Academy members next visited the office of The Hon. Mrs. Justice Susan Denham, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, where the members were welcomed by the Chief Justice. She explained that the Supreme Court had a very busy schedule this day, including seven very notable cases and five routine. The Academy members learned that the history of Ireland with the UK, and the declaration of the Irish Free State was complicated until the written Constitution of 1937 was accepted by the electorate. The Supreme Court is composed of the Chief Justice of Ireland who is President of the Court, and nine ordinary judges. The President of the Court of Appeal and the President of the High Court are also ex officio members. The Court usually sits with a composition of three or five judges, and, exceptionally with seven judges. The Chief Justice or a Supreme Court judge may sit alone to hear certain interlocutory and procedural applications. If there is a question of the validity of an Act of Parliament the Constitution requires that the court consist of a minimum of five judges. Chief Justice Denham explained that the Justices in the Supreme Court are strong, independent judges, which is very important because Ireland is a trading nation. She discussed the relationship of Ireland to the EU, matters of boundaries and concerns with trading areas, and oil and steel trade relationships. In response to questions from IATJ judges, she discussed the European Court of Justice and the European Court of Human Rights and the sovereignty of Ireland. She discussed the Brexit referendum on Ireland’s future. IATJ President Tom Murphy presented the Chief Justice with an Honorary Member certificate and a National Park Commemorative Book and IATJ clock in appreciation for taking the time to meet with the Academy group.
Following the meeting with the Chief Justice, Court Law Clerks, Ms. Christina O’Byrne, Mr. Jack Meredith and Mr. Kevin Sheedy gave a brief history of the Four Courts. They explained that the Four Courts is Ireland's main courts building, and is located on Inns Quay adjacent to the River Liffey. The land was originally used by the King’s Inns and housed the four courts of Chancery (equity), King’s Bench (criminal), Exchequer (the Crown itself), and the Court of Common Pleas (civil). This is where the name Four Courts originated historically. During the Civil War in 1922, the courts were occupied by anti-treaty forces, and the part of the building housing the Irish Public Record Office was destroyed by an explosion which caused all records archived from the prior thousand years to be lost. When the new Free State courts system was adopted in 1932, the Four Courts were rebuilt and re-opened. The Four Courts presently are the location of the Supreme Court, the High Court and the Dublin Circuit Court. Until 2010 the building also housed the Central Criminal Court, which is now the Criminal Courts of Justice.
The Academy judges were next driven to the Criminal Courts of Justice, where they were welcomed to the Judges’ Lounge with tea and biscuits by Justice Patrick McCarthy, of the Central Criminal Court, Judges Patrick McCarthy and Pauline Codd, of the Circuit Court, and Judges Ann Ryan, Debbie Maclachlen and Michael Walsh, from the District Court.
The Justice and Judges outlined the Irish Court System for the Academy judges explaining that there are three levels of government in Ireland: executive, legislative and judicial. Judges cannot hold any office other than judicial. There are five tiers of courts: District Court, Circuit Court, High Court, Court of Appeal and Supreme Court. There are 24 District Courts in Ireland with 61 judges. The District Courts hear cases relating to minor criminal offenses, family law matters involving custody and maintenance, and civil law up to a value of €15,000. The Circuit Courts have 42 judges who handle criminal offenses tried before a jury (other than those tried at the Central Criminal Court), family law ancillary matters, civil claims up to €75,000, and appeals from the District Court. The High Court, which has 37 judges, has jurisdiction to determine all matters in civil and criminal, and the power to determine the validity of any law involving the Constitution, and hears appeals from the Circuit Court in civil matters. The Supreme Court has eight members plus the Chief Justice.
The judges explained that most hear short matters in the morning and start trials at 2:00 p.m. Most trials last three days in Dublin. The judges in the smaller counties hear all types of cases, moving around as required to hear civil, criminal and family law. One of the judges noted, “There are a lot of cases involving drugs and alcohol throughout the country. A lot of people come from backgrounds with generations of addictions, not understanding right and wrong, with few advantages in their life. The courts try to make people understand the error of their ways, and prefer to show compassion rather than sending someone to prison.” The judges then described the current matters on calendar and invited the Academy members to visit their courts to observe proceedings, which Academy members enjoyed.
In the afternoon the group visited Malahide Castle and gardens, home of the Talbot family from 1185 to 1975. One of the oldest castles in Ireland, and set on 260 acres, it has played a central role in Medieval Irish history. The oldest parts of the castle date back to the 12th century. The building was notably enlarged during the reign of Edward IV, and towers added circa 1600-1650. The estate survived such things as the Battle of the Boyne and the Penal Laws. The judges had a private tour of the refurbished Castle and walked around the gardens. Everyone enjoyed dinner at Roly’s Restaurant.
DAY 6: In the morning the group visited Trinity College and met with Professor Oran Doyle, Head of School, Professor Neville Cox, Dean of Graduate Studies and Director of Development for the Law School, Professor Mark Bell, Regius Chair of Laws, and Mr. Peter Dunne, a Ph.D. candidate studying the European legal system. The meeting was later joined by Dr. David Pendergast, Director of Undergraduate Studies.
Professor Doyle explained that Trinity College is the oldest in Ireland. Founded in 1592, it receives a major amount of state funding, and the government subsidizes about 50% of the student fees, around €3,000 per year for graduate studies. Law students can earn five different degrees, and the core LLB is received by approximately 90 students each year. There are four joint degrees: law and French or German degrees, law and business, and law and political science. Professor Doyle stated, when students graduate, many pursue further masters in the U.S., UK, or other parts of the world. “In five to ten years down the line, the students usually end up in some sort of legal positions in Ireland or the UK, i.e. house counsel, government positions, legal advisors, working for corporations.” The undergraduate degree is four years, compared to the three-year programs in England and Wales.
Professor Prendergast explained that a degree does not qualify students as lawyers. They must first pass certain tests and complete training programs, and then decide whether they will become barristers (to eventually become court officers), or solicitors, who do everything else, “although this has been merged somewhat.” Students can also join the King’s Inn or the Law Society of Ireland’s training programs in law firms.
During the first year of law school students take a broad curriculum of Constitution Law, Foundations of Law, and Torts, and primarily read cases. Since Ireland’s membership in the EU in 1970, there has been rapid expansion working with not just domestic, but multiple sources of law, including matters that the Court of Justice in Luxemburg hears involving economic law and the free movement of goods and people. If there is a conflict between domestic law and EU law, the EU law takes priority; however they seldom come into conflict, though the EU is very powerful. Joining the EU was a referendum to surrender a certain amount of sovereignty that often entails amending the treaties of the EU. The Irish people voted in a referendum to consent to it, and in 1975, the UK people agreed to continue to be members, as did Parliament, but now Brexit has taken place. This brings up many economic issues, including sharing sovereignty for the common good, and sharing a single currency. Professor Prendergast believes Ireland has benefitted economically as a member of the EU since the EU has invested in Ireland, and that has been a good thing for Ireland. There is no debate in Ireland to leave the EU.
Mr. Peter Dunne is at Trinity College of Law in a Ph.D program. He received his undergrad degree from NYU and his law degree from Harvard. He spoke about his career plans and the classes he was taking at Trinity.
Following the meeting the Academy group visited the Trinity Library and walked through the 213 foot-long main chamber of the Old Library, called the Long Room. Built between 1712 and 1732, it houses 200,000 of the Library's oldest books. Initially, the Long Room had a flat ceiling, shelving for books only on the lower level, and an open gallery. By the 1850s, because the Library had been given permission to obtain a free copy of every book that had been published in Ireland and Britain, expansion of the Long Room was necessary. It is lined with a marble bust collection formed when 14 busts from the famous sculptor, Pieter Scheemakers, were acquired by the college. Many of the busts are of great philosophers, writers, and men who supported the college. The Long Room also holds one of the last remaining copies of the 1916 Proclamation of the Irish Republic and the Trinity College Harp that is the oldest of its kind in Ireland dating back to the 15th century. The Library’s most famous exhibit is the Book of Kells, written over one thousand years ago when Ireland had a population of less than a half a million people. The Book of Kells contains lavishly decorated copy in Latin of the four gospels.
The group then enjoyed lunch in the College ceremonial dining room
with the Professors, joined by several law students. IATJ President
Tom Murphy presented Professor Doyle with a $1,000 donation
from the IATJ which will be used for some of the programs available
at the law school.
The afternoon was free for Academy members to stay in Dublin
or return to the hotel.
DAY 7: The Academy group departed Dublin for Kilkenny City. Upon arrival the group was welcomed by Mayor Patrick O’Neill for a tour of City Hall. The Mayor’s one-year term began in June. There used to be a city council, but in 2014 it was abolished because the people wanted a mayor only. Mayor O’Neill is a civil engineer with a degree from the agricultural college and owns a working farm. There has been a village here since the 8th century. In the 12th century, the Normans developed the city and many wealthy families lived here. The City Hall is located in a 14th century building where sovereigns used to sit and collect taxes, people who did not pay were put in the jail in the building. The Mayor shared some of the City’s historical artifacts, including a letter from King William written at the Royal Camp at Bennetsbridge. The letter, dated July 1690, appointed a Protestant mayor, alderman and officials, who had been displaced by the late King James II. Other artifacts included a Grant of the Bishop of Ossory, Geoffrey de Turville, dated 1244 A.D., conferring to the Black Abbey the right to draw water from St. Canice’s Well. Following the meeting with the Mayor, the group visited St. Canice’s Cathedral and Kilkenny Castle, an Anglo-Norman stone castle built for William Marshal, 4th Earl of Pembroke during the first decade of the 13th century.
The group then arrived at Mt. Juliet Manor House, and were greeted and escorted to the door by the hounds and horses that still live on the estate. Academy members later toured the estate and visited the kennels. The estate dates from the 1700s and is now a world class hotel and golf course. Dinner was in the Jink’s Bar at Mt. Juliet, and the judges were joined by Mayor O’Neill and his guest.
DAY 8: Today was a full day to enjoy golfing, archery, fishing or any of the activities of Mt. Juliet. As an option, there was a tour to Waterford City and a visit to the Waterford Crystal Visitor Center, including a guided factory tour. The group enjoyed a bus tour of New Ross, including a tour of the Dunbrody Famine Ship: “the replica tall ship is a reminder of the famine era and a lasting memorial to the Irish-Americans ... many of which started their new life on these ‘coffin ships’.“ The next visit was to the Kennedy homestead farmhouse located on a private farm. Some in the group enjoyed dinner at Mt. Juliet Presidents Bar or The Lady Helen Dining room.
DAY 9: In the morning the group departed for Killarney. During the drive, the group visited The Rock of Cashel, which was the traditional seat of the kings of Munster for several hundred years prior to the Norman invasion. In 1101, the King of Munster donated his fortress on the Rock to the Church. It has collections of Celtic art and medieval architecture. A few remnants of the early structures survive, but the majority of buildings date from the 12th and 13th centuries. Following the Castle tour, the group visited the English Market in Cork, before arriving in Killarney at the Malton Hotel. Dinner was at Lord Kenmare’s.
DAY 10: The group enjoyed a full day of sightseeing in the Dingle Peninsula, “enjoying the wild expanses where the sea meets the sky in such a breathtaking way that the National Geographic once described the Dingle Peninsula as the most beautiful place on Earth.” As an example of early life, the group stopped at the Gallarus Oratory, a stone building about 1300 years old.
In Dingle there was free time to explore the stores selling handmade arts and crafts, choose a seafood restaurant for lunch, and to enjoy traditional Irish music. Dinner and a Irish Night Show, including Irish music and step dancing, was at Jarvey’s.
DAY 11: The group enjoyed another full day of sightseeing in the Gap of Dunloe. Riding in pony traps up the scenic Gap with lunch at the top at Lord Brandon’s Cottage, they then took boats back to Ross Castle in Killarney. This was the only day of pelting rain, which made the boat ride even more thrilling. The rest of the day was free to explore Killarney.
ANNUAL BUSINESS MEETING
At 4:00 p.m., the annual business meeting was convened in a conference room at the Malton Hotel in Killarney with all members in attendance. President Tom Murphy welcomed everyone and expressed his appreciation for the good turnout. He believes so far it’s been a good trip.
Upon motion by Judge Seymour and seconded by Judge Soares, the minutes of the 2015 Aix-en-Provence and Rhône River Cruise were approved as written.
The Treasurer’s Report was submitted by Judge Seymour reflecting a beginning balance of $4,316.88 as of October 4, 2015. Income derived from dues, initiation fees and scholarship donations was $4,390.68. Expenses totaled $5,379.63. The balance on hand as of September 18, 2016 was $3,327.93. Upon motion from Judge Soares and seconded by Judge Mortimer, the report was approved as presented.
The Membership Report was presented by CAO Diane Bowen and discussed. Two members were delinquent for 2015 and 2016. Upon motion by Judge Soares and seconded by Judge Conklin, the two members were dropped for non-payment of dues. Ten other members were delinquent on the 2016 dues. Two new members had joined in 2016, and pending nominations were outlined. There were three resignations.
The Nominating Committee consisting of past-presidents of the Academy presented the following recommendations, which were accepted by unanimous vote. Judge Mortimer as President, Judge Hunt as President-elect, Judge Stotler as Chancellor. The positions of Secretary-Treasurer will remain with Judge Seymour and Judge Murphy to facilitate banking. Having no further nominations from the floor, Judge Soares moved the nominations closed.
Judge Mortimer presented several itinerary suggestions for the 2017 trip and the judges expressed strong interest in a AmaWaterways cruise from Budapest to Bucharest, spending time in each location for several nights. Judge Mortimer and Diane will work with Creative Travel Planners to develop this trip.
There was discussion regarding gratuities for the tour guide and bus driver and an amount was agreed upon. At 5:15 p.m., the meeting was adjourned. Members were free for the rest of the day and evening.
DAY 12: In the morning the group departed for their last stop, Galway. On the way, the group visited Bunratty Castle, an authentic medieval castle built in 1425, and restored in 1954. It contains mainly 15th and 16th century furnishings, tapestries, and works of art which capture the mood of those times. It also includes the Folk Park consisting of a charming village street complete with school, post office, doctor’s house, hardware shop, printers and McNamara’s pub. After lunch in Bunratty the group departed for the awesome Cliffs of Moher.
The group checked into the Glenlo Abbey Hotel. Built in 1740 by the Ffrenches, Glenlo Abbey is a two-story detached house with a grand entrance and flight of steps. In the 1980s, the house and estate were sold to the Bourke family, who restored the house and converted it into a hotel. In the 1990s, two original carriages from the Orient Express were purchased and placed on the grounds of Glenlo Abbey. The group enjoyed a cocktail party hosted by IATJ President Tom and Pat Murphy, which was held in the drawing room of the hotel. Galway City Mayor Noel Larken also attended the cocktail party. Most of the IATJ members enjoyed dining in the hotel this evening.
DAY 13: In the morning the group departed to visit Kylemore Abbey in Connemara via a scenic drive across Maam Cross. The Abbey was built in 1867 by Mitchell Henry, a doctor and industry tycoon for his wife. From 1923, it served as a Benedictine run boarding school and was restored by the Benedictine community. The school closed in 2010, but the nuns still remain in residence and are the directors of the Kylemore Trust, which stewards the estate and castle. The group enjoyed lunch at the Leenane Hotel in Connemara, then returned to Galway City where members could explore Galway City or return to the hotel for a free afternoon.
In the evening the Farewell Dinner was held at the Luxury Pullman Restaurant, inside the old Orient Express train cars. Dating from 1927, these carriages served on the Paris to Istanbul to St. Petersburg route. One of the pair was used in the making of Agatha Christie's Murder on the Orient Express. The group presented President Tom Murphy and Pat with Waterford candlesticks as a thank you gift for all their work in planning the trip, and the IATJ presented Diane with a Waterford shamrock as a thank you gift for all her work.
DAY 14: In the morning, members left to return home.
Written by Diane Z. Bowen, Chief Administrative Officer
I certify that all Fellows of the Academy listed above attended all the meetings of the Academy.
President Thomas R. Murphy