Year long community project results in new book on history of Ray

RAY Community Group are set to launch ‘Ray Remembered: A Photographic History of Ray and District’ in Ray Community Centre on Wednesday, February 15 at 7.30pm.

The publication of this book is the centrepiece and culmination of a year-long community history project, launched by the group in early 2022.

Over the past twelve months, almost one thousand photographs were collected from members of the Ray community and its diaspora, chronicling the history of the small community for over a century and a half.


The project was announced last year to mark the 10th anniversary of the opening of Ray Community School, as well as the centenary of the opening of the old Ray National School.

To commemorate these milestones the group wanted to collect and preserve the photographic history of the area, from Brownknowe to Craig to Glenalla.

The result is a 160 page book with visual and literary treasures from the locality, as well as a categorised digital archive of almost 1,000 photographs.

This project involved the hard work of a number of individuals from the area, including Patrick Loughrey, Fiona Boyle, Dessie Crerand, Michael Connolly, Arthur Lynch and Declan Meehan over the past twelve months.

It was made possible by the overwhelming response by members of the wider Ray community and diaspora, who came forward in their droves to submit photos from as far back as the 19th century.

The project was a collaboration between community organisations and members of the community, with the ultimate aim of giving voice to the story of Ray, from before the opening of Ray National School, to beyond the opening of Ray Community Centre, with everything in between.

The result is a history otherwise untold, to be kept and passed down to future generations.


The overall project was supported by Milford & District Resource Centre, whose Kirsty Shields worked wonders on the photographs submitted and was central to the success of the project and was crucial to the completion of the resulting book.

A contribution to the costs of the book’s publication was also received from Donegal Local Development Company.

The launch will take place on Wednesday, February 15 at 7.30pm and everyone is welcome to join in what will be a fantastic evening of celebration and reflection.

Books will be on sale on the night and will be priced at €20.
Online sales of the book will also be launched on the night for those living farther afield.

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