Category Archives: Events

Cathal Brugha Barracks

The Mess President, Officers' Mess, Cathal Brugha Barracks, has extended an invitation to ARCO members and their guests to a BBQ to mark the departure of the GOC 2 Brigade, Brigadier General Michael Beary, as Force Commander UNIFIL. 

The BBQ takes place on Thursday, 30th June and tickets are €15. Cocktail Bar opens at 1830 with food served at 1930 followed by a DJ and Music.

Interested members should contact the Mess before next Tuesday, the 28th at 01 804 6460 or e-mail

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Congratulations to Commandant Victor Laing, formerly officer in charge of Military Archives, who was conferred with the Degree, Honoris Causa, of Doctor of Laws by University College Dublin on Monday, 25 April 2016. The ceremony was part of UCD’s celebration of the Decade of Centenaries. Those who were also conferred with honorary degrees on this special occasion were: Ms Catriona Crowe, Professor Roy Foster, Mr Justice Gerard Hogan, Professor Joe Lee and Professor Michael Mann.

On the following day Uachtarán na hÉireann, Dr Michael D. Higgins, opened the newly refurbished Military Archives facility at Cathal Brugha Barracks. This represents one of the seven Government flagship capital projects being developed for the 1916 centenary. The project is a tribute to the dedication of Victor Laing, the late Commandant Peter Young and the staff and volunteers who have worked in Military Archives over the years.













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The Defence Forces Review 2016 – Call for Papers

The Defence Forces Review 2016

Call for Papers

“The Emergence of Modern Ireland, 1912-2016”

Conference to be held at Dublin Castle on 15 October 2016

In order to commemorate the centenary of the 1916 Easter Rising, and to contribute to the process of national reflection that is currently in progress, the Defence Forces, in conjunction with the Centre for Military History and Strategic Studies at Maynooth University and the Trinity College Dublin Centre for Contemporary Irish History, will host a one-day conference in Dublin Castle on 15 October 2016 with the aim of exploring the ‘Emergence of Modern Ireland, 1912-2016’. The conference will explore political, social, economic and cultural developments in Irish history from the Home Rule crisis to the present day with a particular focus on military matters, including the history of the Defence Forces, and on the evolution of Irish foreign policy. Proposals are welcomed for papers that address any of these topics and contributions are encouraged from academia and also from within the Defence Forces and from Veterans' groups.

Selected papers (c.3000 words) will be published in an expanded edition of the annual Defence Forces Review, copies of which will be available in traditional format and also online via the Defence Forces' website. Those wishing to contribute to this publication must submit their completed paper (c.3000 words) to the conference organisers by 30 June 2016.

Organisers: Prof. Eunan O’Halpin (Trinity College Dublin), Dr. Ian Speller (Maynooth University) & Colonel David Dignam (Military College).

Abstracts (250 words) for 20 minute papers should be accompanied by a brief CV and sent to Col Dave Dignam at by 31 March 2016. Please indicate whether you also intend submitting a full paper (c.3000 words) for publication in the Defence Forces Review.

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Annual Lt. Gen. Dermot Earley Memorial Lecture

ARCO has received the following invite on behalf of its members.  

Members who will attend should RSVP, as indicated below.


The Edward M Kennedy Institute for Mediation and Conflict Intervention, Maynooth University In association with the Irish Defence Forces

Cordially invites the members of ARCO to the

 Annual Lieutenant General Dermot Earley Memorial Lecture

‘Leadership Within Society’

Delivered by

John Ging

(Director of Operational Division at the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA)  

Followed by a response from Vice Admiral Mark Mellett DSM, Chief of Staff of the Irish Defence Forces.                  

John's address will focus on the prospects for refocusing global efforts on humanitarian impact.  John Ging is responsible for UN OCHA field operations worldwide and the focal point for UN Emergency Relief Coordination.  John is also the lead adviser to the Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs on operational decision-making.  Lieutenant General Dermot Earley was a close associate of the Edward M Kennedy Institute and a member of the Kennedy Institute inaugural International Council of Expert Advisers.                                                        

This event will be held in the Aula Maxima, Maynooth University at 2 30pm on Friday 27 November 2015  


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Annual Commemoration Service

The Annual Commemoration Service for deceased members of the Defence Forces will take place for the first time at the National Memorial, Merrion Square at 12 noon on Sunday, 1st November 2015. ARCO Members and their families are invited to attend.

The usual garrison ceremonies will be held on Friday, 6th November.

Veterans’ Day 2015


The 2015 Defence Forces Veterans’ Day will take place on Saturday, 12th September in Collins Barracks, Cork.

All Defence Forces’ Veterans have been invited. The Minister for Defence, Mr. Simon Coveney T.D., the Chief of Staff and the General Staff will be in attendance. A shuttle bus service will be provided for Veterans, from Cork Bus station and Kent Railway station, to Collins Barracks (and return) beginning at 1045hrs and continuing every 15 minutes until 1900hrs.

The programme for the day is as follows:

  • Reception of guests in Collins Barracks at 1100hrs
  • Commemorative Mass in the Garrison Church at 1200hrs
  • Commemorative ceremony presided over by the Minister for Defence at 1300hrs
  • Display of military equipment, Military Archives and insignia from 1400hrs
  • Refreshments will be served from 1500hrs


We ask that as many ARCO members as possible attend this event and participate in the ceremony.

We look forward to seeing you in Cork on the day.

A launch of Veterans' Day will held on Friday, 28th August at 1030 hrs in the NCO's Mess, Collins Barracks, Cork. Collins Officers' Mess invites all its members to attend this event prior to the usual Friday Club.


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General Collins’ Commemoration – Cathal Brugha Barracks

The General Officer Commanding 2 Brigade, Brigadier General Michael Beary, has extended an invitation to ARCO members to the Defence Forces’ annual commemoration of our first Commander-in-Chief, General Michael Collins.

The commemoration takes place in Cathal Brugha Barracks at twelve noon on Saturday the 22nd of August, the 93rd anniversary of the death of General Collins. The event will be attended by the Chief of Staff, along with members of the Collins family.

The event will comprise of a remembrance ceremony at the General Collins Memorial in Cathal Brugha Barracks followed by a lecture entitled “Glorious Madness – military aspects of the 1916 Rising”, which will be delivered by Captain Lar Joye (RDF), Curator of Military History at the National Museum of Ireland.

Click HERE for an outline of the day’s programme.

ARCO members should indicate their intention to attend, not later than the 17th of August 2015, to Sgt Ruarí Byrne at and should also indicate if they will avail of lunch in the Barrack Dining Centre.

A few additional administrative points received on 17th August:

  • Guests are asked to arrive not later than 1115hrs.
  • Tea and coffee will be made available at the rear end of the dining hall from 1030hrs.
  • The Main Barrack Gate will be locked at 1145hrs to ensure there is no interference with the ceremony.
  • The Canal Gate will be open from 1000hrs to facilitate entry to and exit from the Barracks.
  • Meal tickets will be available for purchase at the Tea/ Coffee area and in the NCO dining hall at the Archives' display.

Dublin Ex-Forces Insight Day

The attached has been received by ARCO and may be of interest to some of our members. 

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Farewell Gathering – Monsignor Eoin Thynne HCF

Monsignor Eoin Thynne was appointed Chaplain to Cathal Brugha Barracks, Dublin in July 1991 where he succeeded the late Fr. Paddy Breslin. He was appointed Head Chaplain to the Forces on 1st September 2005 and has served with numerous missions in Lebanon and Kosovo.

As a mark of the esteem Eoin is held in, and in recognition of his valuable service to the Defence Forces, a farewell gathering to mark the end of his term as Head Chaplain will be held in DFHQ Officers’ Mess, McKee Barracks on Thursday, 23rd July 2015 at 1600 hrs.  His many friends in ARCO will wish to be associated with this occasion.

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Final Ceremonial Military Guard at the National Memorial – 2014

This coming Saturday, 23rd August, will see the final Ceremonial Military Guard for this year parade at the site of the National Memorial to Members of the Defence Forces who died in the Service of the State. The Memorial is located in Merrion Square, Dublin 2.

3 Infantry Battalion and 1 Armoured Cavalry Squadron will provide the guards for this very moving and dignified ceremony. It will begin at midday and will last for approximately one hour. This is the last opportunity, in this very historic year, your family and friends will have of being part of this most impressive occasion. So, bring them along!

Further details are available at:

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