|Elevation||63 m (207 ft)|
|Irish Grid Reference||V592605|
Moyvane (Irish: Maigh Mheáin, meaning "main or middle plain") is a small village in County Kerry in the south west of Ireland. It is situated off the N69 road between Listowel to the South-West and Tarbert to the North. The village of Knockanure lies to the immediate South. The parish in which the village is located is now also known as the "Parish of Moyvane", it was originally called the parish of Murhur, this was part of the ancient "Barony of Iraghticonnor", it seldom featured in the history books in conjunction with the stories of the Barony, hence very little writing exists about the parish.
The name of "Moyvane", which in Irish is "Maigh Mheain" meaning "the Middle Plain", was adopted by the village in 1939 when a plebiscite was held by "Father O'Sullivan", who was the Parish Priest at the time. It is the name of a townland situated about two miles South-West of the actual village itself and this area resembles a flat plain/prairie-like landscape that extends for miles around.
Prior to 1939, the village had been called "NewtownSandes" and is even still referred to, by natives, as "Newtown" – which is especially true of the older generation.
The origin of the name "NewtownSandes" itself is tempered with pain as it was the village located on the lands of "George Sandes" when he was alive in the early 1880s. He was a notoriously cruel Landlord (and agent of another) at that time and still tenaciously held on to his estates towards the end of the Land War when most of his peers had already given up theirs.
Around 1886, after a forceful eviction of some of his tenants, the name of the village was changed to "NewtownDillon" after "John Dillon". However, this didn't stick and the name remained unchanged until 1916 when another name-change was attempted: this time to "NewtownClarke" after the 1916 Easter Rising leader "Thomas Clarke".
The parish of Moyvane emphasises artistic talent in their culture, as well as music, drama, and storytelling. Performances are often held in the Marian Hall, where villagers gather to watch some of the artistic work and dramatic shows that the citizens or guests have to offer.
Past performances there have included the well known 'seanchaí' Eddie Lenihan, who told of mythical battles involving the Fianna, as well as poetry recitals by Gabriel Fitzmaurice, Dan Keane and Cormac O'Leary.
A myriad of 'talent' shows have been held in the Hall over the years that gave welcome opportunities to the young locals to sing and play music in front of their neighbours. These shows would culminate in comedy sketches bringing the night to an end.
In 2004, Gabriel Fitzmaurice presented a radio show on Radio Kerry called 'The Boghole Boys'. Most of North Kerry tuned into the show each Monday night to hear the stories, songs, music and poems being performed by people from Moyvane, Knockanure and the surrounding parishes.
Listed below is a small collection of the recordings that occurred in the pub where some of the more famous locals have performed.
Mairead Kearney's (2 February 2004) Joe's Bar (16 February 2004) Flynn's Bar (8 March 2004) Brosnan's Bar (22 November 2004) Dan Keane, Peggy Sweeney, John Looney, Hannah Mai Collins and Mick McConnell (19 January 2004)
The Moyvane village is perhaps most known for the poets that have come from its parish. The collection provided below encompasses the style of poetry that is native to Moyvane.
The Village Hall is a verse by G. Fitzmaurice which tells the tale of the old shows that took place in the performance hall prior to the new one being established. Willie's Car is a poetic description of a popular village character written by Dan Keane.
Other poetry originating from Moyvane includes: Jimmy Nolan by Gabriel Fitzmaurice, Billy Cunningham by Gabriel Fitzmaurice, The Kerryman by Dan Keane, Old Jack Fitz' by Gabriel Fitzmaurice, Willie Dore by Gabriel Fitzmaurice, and Memories by Tom Scanlon (the Punter).
Story-telling is a popular form of drama and expression in Moyvane. Many of the native stories written about the village are produced by the Moyvane poets discussed above, and a collection of these stories is provided below.
Wit and Wonder by Dan Keane, Changes in 'Newtown' by Maurice Cunningham, Souls of Song by Dan Keane, Carnival by Dan Keane, Trades by Dan Keane, My Own Place by Gabriel Fitzmaurice, Three Wise Men of Moyvane Anonymous
The Songs of Moyvane and its surrounding area are many, varied and surprisingly unknown. Here is a collection of some of the songs and ballads that are native to the parish.
The Valley of Knockanure by Tim Leahy, The Rose of Newtownsandes Anonymous, The 'Boro' and the Gleann Anonymous, Newtown vs Tarbert by Paddy Enright, Raid on Knockanure by Willie Finucane, Road to Newtownsandes by Patrick McAuliffe, Dainty Man by Paddy O' Connor
The local GAA team has taken the championship in North Kerry 18 times throughout the course of the clubs history. Moyvane also served as the setting for the 2005 championship final between Listol and Ballyduff.
Moyvane has its own vibrant soccer club called Newtown Athletic. Sponsored by Speedy's Bar, they play their Kerry District League home games in the Creamery Field – a well maintained pitch right in the heart of downtown Moyvane. The club has been in operation for the past few years and has been going strength to strength with promotion last year to Division One.
Badminton was first introduced to Moyvane in 1975. The first Club was a Juvenile Club formed by Fr. Brosnan. It was played in the old Marian Hall, and even though the roof was low and the Court size about three-quarters the size of a normal court, the young people of the parish played the new game with enthusiasm, skill and success. In 1976 Moyvane were among the prize winners in the County Championships held in Tarbert. Successful players of the time were Rita Groarke, Wm. Flaherty, Tony O'Donoghue, Paula and Colm Kennedy. In May 2012, the Moyvane Division 3 team made history, by becoming the first senior team in the club to make an All-Ireland final, held in Baldoyle, Co. Dublin. Team: Saorcha Fitzgerald, Jeanelle Griffin, Elaine Hudson, Carmel Hudson,Francine Collins, Dermot Keane, James Sheehan, Donncha Moloney and Mike Corridon.
This particular sport started off initially by Padraig O'Connor in the parish. Some players who have had victories at the county level and some international levels have come from the remote village of Moyvane. Many girls from the parish have been involved with All-Ireland winning school teams and have brought many All-Ireland medals to Moyvane.
The Moyvane Nature Trail is a project that was created to connect the woods where the Moyvane and Knockanure woods meet. Moyvane is a rural parish in North Kerry bordering West Limerick.It is situated about 11 km (7 mi) (7miles) north east of Listowel and 8 km (5 mi) south of Tarbert. The North Kerry Walks Committee provided finance for the project as well as appealed to volunteers to make an attack on all the rubbish, fallen trees, and to scrub both woods of briars and bushes commencing on Easter weekend of 1996. With the help of 145 voluntary hours, the walk was open to the public on 1 June 1996. The walk has been extended to include an alternative route around the perimeter of the GAA pitch 1.5 km (0.9 mi), recently it has been further extended to take in a river walk that brings you to a restored Limekiln.
Notable people from/residents of Moyvane include: