Some relatives of Irishmen and Irishwomen who fought and died in the 1916 Easter Rising have described a planned memorial wall at Glasnevin Cemetery which will include the names of British troops as “deeply insulting”.
The project known as the 1916 Necrology Wall will be unveiled at Glasnevin Cemetery on 3 April and will include the names of all 485 people who died during the Easter Rising – including soldiers of the British Empire.
Caretaker Heritage Minister Heather Humphreys praised the plan, saying “all lives are equal” and said the Government will host a state event at Grangegorman Cemetery to remember all the British soldiers who died trying to suppress the uprising.
The 1916 Relatives’ Association said that the Glasnevin Trust did not consult with it or the descendants of the executed leaders before going ahead with what it called a “bizarre proposal”.
“We are all opposed in principle to any proposal to locate a wall, plaque or register in Glasnevin Cemetery or elsewhere upon which names of British Army personnel will be inscribed alongside 1916 Volunteers who were killed in action or executed by Crown forces,” said the Association.
Mary Kirwan, a relative of Volunteer James Hanratty and who works as a guide in Kilmainham Gaol, who strongly objects, said: “Would the British be commemorating the German soldiers at the Cenotaph?”
Sister Cora Richardson, a relative of GPO garrison Volunteer JJ Walsh, who was condemned to death for his role in the Rising but was later released, said: “I think it’s a disgrace. Who would want to have the people who killed those people and put them all together in one wall of celebration. It makes no sense to me. I do have a big problem with them being celebrated alongside our heroes.”