The Gorey Guardian 18.08.2023

SEE: GAF 2023 Wrap-Up Vid

As well as hosting a family-friendly weekend festival with theatre, film, music, talks, workshops and exhibitions, GAF 2023
Commissioned and produced a new play. Commissioned a new score.
Commissioned a new bi-lingual documentary film.
Developed and Produced a Culture Night presentation

In NEW INITIATIVES the festival
Established an adult Choir, curated a first solo exhibition by a local artist,
purchased a new pagoda to develop a new outdoor venue that packed out.
And produced Ballythomas News – a newsletter combining local news and pre-festival programme info

The new play, ‘Head Case’ sold out.
The Talks@TheGap, on a range of local histories, was so full that people stood outside the door listening in.
The Soul Cowboys saw the biggest numbers ever at TheGig@TheGap.

In a special Culture Night presentation – From Ballythomas to Memphis and Back – Ashley Hayden, with live music, spoken word and photographs told the story of his road trip to the Mississippi Delta in search of the Blues.
Look out for X-GAP – A Christmas Surprise! Honor Heffernan’s Choir plus Mysterious X-MAS Sketches – popping up at Askamore, the Gap Barn, Gorey Shopping Centre, and more…
A big thank you to all who came, and all who chipped in.
We’ll be back – August 9-11th 2024!

Events 2023

Big Surprise!

One week from tomorrow, it’s show time!!! So that’s next Sunday, the 3rd of December everyone! 🎶Mark your calendars! 🗓️


Especially for Christmas, The Gap Arts Festival presents X-GAP, a Choir with a difference!

The X-Gap Choir will make their debut in Askamore at 4pm for the beautiful annual event that is the Switching on of the Lights!

Followed by Sunday the 10th of December in the Gap Pub Barn at 3.30pm

Then, onto Gorey Shopping Centre on Sunday the 17th of December at 2.30pm

The Gap Christmas Choir will join with the Honor Heffernan Askamore Singers to perform a selection of seasonal favourites, including Santa Claus is Coming to Town, White Christmas, Deck the Halls, and of course, Jingle Bells.

But don’t say a word! There’s a spanner in the works!

Surprising pop-up comedy sketches and colourful costume characters, – such as Arty the Bear – as well as Don Angel in person, will add to the family fun.

Please tell your friends and family members!

Events 2023

The Ritz Brothers

SUNDAY AUGUST 13TH 2.30 – 5.30 – THE COMMUNITY FIELD – ADMISSION: €10 per family

There’s no show quite like a Ritz Brothers’ show.  These theatrical, musical troubadours play melodies from the jukebox of your heart. Every show is a magical celebration of songs and stories, tunes and tales. 

Whether it’s on stage or going walkabout from table to table, The Ritz Brothers’ unique brand of magical, musical, mayhem is suitable for all audiences and all venues – from festivals to theatres to weddings, birthdays and corporate Christmas parties.

To enquire about or book The Ritz Brothers, visit their website or email

The Ritz Brothers’ monthly residency in Bewley’s Café Theatre drew countless regular Ritz fans. And, this summer, you can catch their open-air summer special in the beautiful surroundings of The Royal Hospital Kilmainham as part of this year’s IMMA Outdoors. 

What audiences have been saying:

“I laughed, I cried, I danced, I had an absolute ball.”

“The Ritz Brothers should be beamed into every home in the country.”

“It feels like you’re in a friend’s living room. A brilliant show. Come see it.”“Pure joy.”

Events 2023


SUNDAY AUGUST 13TH  2.30 – 5.30 – THE COMMUNITY FIELD – ADMISSION: €10 per family

Exhibition of Artwork by Students of Ballythomas National School.

The Project involved 65 children in 4 workshops in April. 
The work will remain on display in Ballythomas Community Field for all to enjoy. 

Project Coordinator Aisling F. Leonard 
Workshop Assistant Olivia Fortune 
Assistant Sean Browne

Some materials sponsored by The Gap Pub and Gap Arts Festival. 

Note if the weather is bad the Picnic will take place in Ballythomas School. 

Events 2023


SUNDAY AUGUST 13TH  2.30 – 5.30 – THE COMMUNITY FIELD – ADMISSION: €10 per family

Bring a blanket, bring a chair, pack a lunch, bring the whole family there…!

Live music from The Ritz Brothers; the Gap Choir; Chelsea n Joe D;
Ballythomas School art exhibition;
A Snail’s Tale – Two medieval clowns in a walkabout adventure;
Cartoons in the Inflatable Cinema; 
Join-in Demos with the Gap Horseshoe Team; 
Face painting with Amani
And more…

Events 2023


12.00 Midnight – The Barn@The Gap Pub – ADMISSION: Free

Toots and the Maytals; Jimmy Cliff; Alton Ellis; John Holt; The Ethiopians; Keith Tex; Heptones; Delroy Wilson; 2 Tone; and more…

Events 2023


Saturday 10.00pm – The Gap Pub Back Yard – ADMISSION: by Donation

We welcome back The Soul Cowboys for a special one-off Ballythomas show. As well as performing their signature Soul music, the local band are presenting a unique gig featuring special guests from the area including Honor Heffernan, Sam Alli, Bosco Walsh and Ashley Hayden, who will join the band to sing soul and funk classics in a nod to the classic film/concert “The Last Waltz” by The Band.

Events 2023

Drop-in Children’s Art Workshop

Saturday 12th @ 2.30- 5pm Ballythomas School – ADMISSION: Free

Join us in Ballythomas School. We will have a range of activities for you to choose from. This year, why not try your hand at making a hand-map, creating little house rocks, watercolour leaf etchings and warrior masks!

Events 2023

Talks@TheGap and Caifé na Maidine/Morning Coffee 

Saturday August 12th @ 11am – Gap Pub Barn – ADMISSION: €5 

The Goldrush on Croghan – Peter O’Connor

Local historian Peter O’Connor and the incredible story of the discovery of gold in which led to a local Klondike. In 1795 ‘placer deposits’ gave rise to a gold rush. Over 2,500 ounces were recovered.  
Some people still pan there, and efforts to find the ‘mother lode’ within the mountain continue.
Beidh Peadar ag caint i nGaeilge agus i mBéarla.

Ancestors Did Tell Lies! Connect With The Census – Bernie Walsh

Bernie Walsh, Professional Genealogist, walks you through the 1901 and 1911 Censuses of Ireland. 
Learn how to search and browse, interpret the forms and discover the extra questions asked for 1911 which can be helpful in identifying dates.  

The Rulers of The Gap – Michael Dwyer

Gorey historian, Michael Dwyer explores the fascinating history folklore of the secret mound in Loggan, near The Gap Pub, associated with the inaugurations of the chieftains of the Uí Chinnsealaigh clan. 
Croghan’s full name is Cruachán Uí Chinnseallaigh, ‘the little stack of the Kinsellas’, and the powerful clan once ruled the province of Leinster.

If Walls Could Talk – Tom Cullen

Having lived in the Gap area all his life Tom has built up a treasure trove of information about the history of the area and its people, including the story of the amazing drystone wall that runs all the way up and over Annagh. 
Who built it? When and why? And how on earth did they manage to build such a fine wall on such difficult terrain?

Events 2023

Late Night Outdoor Family Movie 

Friday 11th @ 10pm – The Community Field – ADMISSION: Free

Late Night Outdoor Family Movie 

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