Post-War Linenhall Sq People

As promised here is an account of the residents of Linen Hall Square at the close of the War (WW2). There were 76 houses and a number of other facilities such as a disused hospital, handball alleys etc. so we will have to tell this story in several parts! 


Ach shure, that’s the way you like it!!

Number 1 was occupied by a McGrath family. Next door was Gabriel (Dapper) McAleavey – yes, he who still has the premises on Mary Street and who later lived in Derrybeg Drive.

At Number 3 was Pat (Bubbly) McElroy, now resident in Cronin Park. Apparently almost everyone then had a nickname. Presumably this one referred to his outgoing personality! 

Sammy Henry reared a large family at Number 4. He had a son Sammy too (Yes, the one you know): Joey, who was a great Irish dancer and was a prisoner-of-war in that great conflict; until his recent death he was another Derrybeg Drive resident: Charlie: Anthony (Archie): Seamus: Kevin: daughters Mary (who ended her days in Mallin Park) Bridie married to Noel McClorey: Eilish (who married the late Dave Marley) and two other girls.

The Lundys were next. Gerry married Shiela McEvoy of Derrybeg Drive and they live now next the shop in Clanrye Avenue. May married Dom Casey. Renee RIP ; Seamus RIP.

At Number 6 was Charlie Taylor, a cook with the RAF who married Sally Mallon, who lives now in Hennessey Park. 

Tommy Jones had a large family at Number 7; Johnny; Tommy (father of our contributor Sally Vandervelden) who married Bridie Donaghy; Paddy; Charlie; Jimmy; Billy; Marie; Lily; Sally; Stella and Kay. Next was Peter Rafferty and his wife.

Numbers 9 and 10 were bungalow houses on their own as you entered Linenhall Square.  John (Sonny) Casey had a large family, Oliver, John, Eric and (now Councillor) Charlie.  But the first house (10) you met was where Dickie Rodgers grew up with his mother Ellen. There was also Micky (later of Dromalane) Willie  and Lily (RIP, mother of Willie, now living in Kirkbride, Scotland).  Willie later lived in Dromalane Park and had children Billy, Thomas, Marie, bernadette and Eileen.  He moved to The Manse and his wife Alice still lives there.

The famous Lottie McKeown and husband Owenie had sons Arthur, Malachy, Malachy and daughters Marie, Margaret, Lottie and Owlene (11).

Albert and Christina McCrum were at 12. Albert led the horse that towed the canal barges up to Lough Neagh! Geordie his son later lived at Derrybeg Drive too.

Mr Fegan at 13 was perhaps the only Protestant in the estate. Every 12th he paraded in his sash to join his brethren at the railway station. No one ever interfered with him. His children included Sammy, Willie, Teddy, Hannah (who married a Manley, plumber in the Gasworks) Belle and Lily, whose daughter Irene now lives in Shandon Park.

The Trainor’s (14) parents were then deceased. A son Jimmy had also been a prisoner-of-war; then there was Billy and Rosie (who married a Joe Quinn of Belfast).

The Careys of 15 had sons Dessie, Noel and Frankie (who died very young) and daughter Joan. At 16 was Con (Nailey) McCann who was a bus-driver. His sister was Lottie McKeown. The McCanns later lived at Dromalane… Joe, Con etc.

Acie Trainor of 17 was a widow woman. Her son was John and she had daughters Roseanne and Bernadette. The family later moved to England.

Another McElroy family lived at 18. Patsy, the son, was a real gentleman who used to work in the tailors Scott & Scotts: there was another son Bernie: daughters were Josie (married to Paddy Fitzpatrick) and Teasie (married to one of the Morgans).

Time for a wee break!! 


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