In 2022 and 2023, Poetry as Commemoration partnered with Poetry Ireland to launch a programme of creative writing workshops across the island of Ireland. This programme has now ended therefore we are no longer accepting applications. This page will remain for archival purposes.

What are Poetry as Commemoration workshops?

In each workshop, participants will write poems using primary source materials from the War of Independence and Civil War as creative prompts. Workshops will be guided by experienced poet-facilitators affiliated with Poetry Ireland.

Who is eligible to join the workshops?

6th Class students visiting UCD Special Collections

School workshops

  • School workshops will be organised directly with school teachers.
  • Primary school workshops are open to 5th and 6th class students.
  • Secondary school workshops are open to all classes.

Adult workshops

  • Adult workshops are open to all over the age of 16.
  • No prior writing experience required.
  • Find a location near you and register via our Workshop Schedule page.

Everyone is welcome to to attend a workshop. We are are committed to equality, diversity and inclusion for all.

Where will workshops be held?

Workshops will be held in various locations around the island of Ireland. Workshops will be held in schools or local libraries depending on the location. The Poetry as Commemoration team will work with host sites to determine the most appropriate workshop venue. You can find our workshop schedule here.

How much do the workshops cost?

Workshops are free of charge.

What is the purpose of the workshops?

The workshop series is part of the public engagement strand of the Poetry as Commemoration project.

P13/3 Letter from Lily O’Brennan, Mountjoy Jail, to her sister Fanny Ceannt describing her arrest at 23 Suffolk St (Republican Headquarters), UCD Archives.

Public engagement with material history
Workshops facilitate creative engagement with material history (letters, photographs, newspapers, official papers, etc.) associated with a particularly difficult period in Irish history, the War of Independence and Civil War. Participants will have access to a selection of materials from a variety of national and local archives.

Imaginative engagement with history
Poetry offers an imaginative way to deepen our understanding of the past and to explore a challenging period of Irish history in an open and inclusive way. Poetry as a medium invites nuanced interpretation, unpacking complex issues in a compressed space. It can address the effect of significant events on the lives of ordinary people, while simultaneously promoting a shared understanding of these events at a national level. Poetry, which transcends borders and connects us to others, also helps us to understand the essential truths of shared humanity and to place experiences in a global context.

Poems created in workshops will be collected by the Poetry as Commemoration team and held in the Irish Poetry Reading Archive at UCD Special Collections as a record of commemorative practice in 2022-2023. The collection will provide future generations with a snapshot of public engagement with commemoration as well as attitudes to the past and hopes for the future. Participants will be invited to sign a consent form which permits Poetry as Commemoration to add your poem to the collections of the Irish Poetry Reading Archive, UCD Library and to the Poetry as Commemoration website. Click here for a copy of the Consent Form.

Get involved

If you’d like to host a workshop at your school or community group, get in touch by emailing This programme has now ended.


Workshops will be run by Poetry Ireland. Poetry Ireland is committed to a child-centred approach to their work with children and young people. They undertake to provide a safe environment and experience, where the welfare of the child/ young person is paramount. Events involving children which take place in Poetry Ireland, or in partnership with PI, must meet the requirements of their Child Protection Policy. Visit the Poetry Ireland website to read their Child Protection Policy.