The original committee
Garech de Brun
Senator Eoin Ryan
Mrs. Eoin Ryan
Dr. George Otto Simms
Cearbhal O Dalaigh
Patrick Kavanagh Grand Canal South Bank Seat.
Introduction by Liam Brady
(Liam is the son of Liam Brady, one of the original committee members of the Grand Canal South Bank Seat)
Whenever you mention Patrick Kavanagh’s seat on the Grand Canal Dublin, most people will immediately think of the more famous park bench with the statue of Paddy himself sitting to one side of the seat almost beckoning for someone to sit down beside him.
This bench is situated on the north bank of the Grand Canal between Baggot Street Bridge and the upstream Eustace Bridge.
John Coll produced the sculpture and the seat was unveiled by her Excellency President Mary Robinson on 11/6/1991, however this is NOT the original seat.
Only a relatively few people will be aware of the lesser known original Kavanagh seat situated on the South Bank at the Lock Gates close to Baggot Street Bridge. As is well known from his poem and heavy hints to his friends, he wished to be commemorated with a simple canal side seat near the lock gates of Baggot Street Bridge.
To this effect shortly after his death in 1967, a committee was formed by the late John Ryan and Denis Dwyer to collect a sum of money to purchase the materials and labour for the seat.
At this stage I would like to reproduce by kind permission of Lilliput Press, an extract from John Ryan’s book "Remembering How We Stood" (Lilliput Press 1987 pp123 - 126) perhaps the only written account of the formation of the committee, it’s members, and it’s proceedings, told in John’s inimitable way.
Read the extract from John Ryan's book "Remembering how we stood" here