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Irish Convention opens in Dublin
A group photograph outside Trinity College of the members of the Irish Convention Photo: National Library of Ireland

Irish Convention opens in Dublin

Dublin, 25 July 1917 - The Irish Convention opened today in Dublin.

The Convention – which is being held in the Regent House in Trinity College Dublin – was first suggested by the Prime Minister David Lloyd George in May 1917 as a way to break the deadlock around the issue of Home Rule for Ireland.

Its membership is comprised of the following categories – Government nominees (15), Irish episcopate (7), Irish Party (5), Ulster Party (5), Irish peers (2), Southern Unionists (5), Lord Mayors and Mayors (6), County Council delegates (32), Urban district councils (8), Chambers of Commerce (3) and Labour delegates (7). No Sinn Féin (SF) delegates are attending

On arrival, the Convention members were met with large crowds on the spacious streets outside, while reporters, photographers and cinema operators took up position at the entrance.

The first to arrive at the Convention was Dr Mahaffy, Provost of Trinity, followed shortly after by Lord Dunraven, Lord Granard, accompanied by Sir Francis Hopwood, Secretary to the Convention.

British Pathé footage of the delegates arriving at Trinity College for the Irish Convention. Possibly John Redmond at the 8s mark

John Redmond MP drove up in his motor car and entered the college at about 10.20am. The Convention sat for an hour, then adjourned to resume at 3 o’clock.

Redmond was greeted by cheers on leaving the TCD at the adjournment, but a ‘number of youths wearing SF badges made a counter demonstration by hissing and uttering SF cries’.

In the afternoon, Sir Horace Plunkett was unanimously selected as Chairman, then they adjourned for two weeks.

[Editor's note: This is an article from Century Ireland, a fortnightly online newspaper, written from the perspective of a journalist 100 years ago, based on news reports of the time.]


Century Ireland

The Century Ireland project is an online historical newspaper that tells the story of the events of Irish life a century ago.