Dr Roger Ball’s Bodhrán

Johnstown Castle is honoured to have a received a very kind donation of Dr Roger Ball’s Bodhrán. The instrument was handmade by local Wexford craftspeople based on ideas proposed by Johnstown staff. This was presented to him on his departure from Johnstown Castle in 1984.

Part of the third floor of the Castle was modified to create a home for Roger, his wife, Oline and their two sons – Harley and Garth. It is interesting to note that Roger’s family was one of the last family residents of the Castle. They spent one year living as sole residents of the Castle in 1984.

The direction and development of the Johnstown Castle research programme benefited from visiting scientists. These scientist significantly contributed to the research programme’s output. They included Dr Roger Ball of DSIR New Zealand, whose seminal work on nitrate leaching resulted in the development of the ongoing environmental nitrogen research programme.
The artwork includes RB, his initials. From the book of Kells (top); Roundels depicting Eire (upper left) and Nua-Shealainn (New Zealand – upper right) and the crest of An Foras Taluntais (bottom). The colours used include the Wexford county (central) and Irish Tricolor (outer).

We hope to have this on display as part of the castle tours in the very near future.
In the picture (L-R): Bill Kelly, Pauline O’Donoghue, Noel Culleton, Dr Aidan Conway, Owen Carton and Matt Wheeler.

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