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O’Connor & O’Callaghan Named Cork Persons’ Of The Month For Keeping Music Alive

The creators of the Blackpool Sentinel blog, Colm O’Callaghan and Martin O’Connor, have been named as February Cork Persons’ of the Month. Their online music and social history resource covers both music and society, primarily from the 1980’s and 1990’s, with an emphasis on music and musicians from Cork during that period.

Colm O'Callaghan and Martin O'Connor receiving their Cork Persons' of the Month Award

Over the last six years, The Blackpool Sentinel, (incorporating Voices From The Glen), has become a regular go-to for fans and musicians. There are currently some 120 well-researched, long form pieces on the site, many of which feature bands and characters from Cork. Those pieces bring back many happy memories of a time and place for those that lived through them. They are available on

Colm O’Callaghan, from Blackpool, was educated by the Christian Brothers at the North Monastery and later at UCC. He is Head of Specialist Factual Content at RTE and oversees all the broadcaster’s history, science, education and diversity output. Colm has won numerous awards for his work but is most proud of his Feile Na Gael medal, won with his local club Glen Rovers back in 1982. Colm writes beautifully and with warmth about his own place, coming of age memories, for a generation of Corkonians. He is preserving the culture and arts created by ordinary people and preserving a history that would otherwise be lost.

Martin O’Connor of UCC Library, and was one of the UCC curators of the Sir Henry’s Music Venue Exhibition at UCC Library. It was a way to turn the story of a music venue into cultural heritage and an opportunity to show its historical, geographical and social importance. It was this exhibition which spawned The Blackpool Sentinel, when Martin coerced Colm into starting The Blackpool Sentinel with him. He is originally from Moyross on the Northside of Limerick City but has lived in Cork for the last thirty years. He is also involved in “Shush”, a weekly radio show covering Sounds from UCC Library and also part of the team behind library blog “Libfocus”.

“This is all about the ‘Soundtrack of our Life’, the singers, musicians and music that influenced us over the years, and I thank Colm and Martin for preserving that social history,” said awards organiser Manus O’Callaghan.

Colm O’Callaghan and Martin O’Connor’s names will now go forward for possible selection as Cork Person of the Year 2020 at a gala awards lunch to be held at year’s end.

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