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THE LOURDES GROTTO AT ROSSMORE, INCHIGEELA, CO. CORK.

         
About September, 1943, John O'Leary, Rossmore, asked Dermot Kelleher to paint in colour, an 18'' white statue of Our Lady, which he had. (Dermot had previously painted the statues in the church yard in colour).                 
     
While Dermot was painting the statue, John told him that his daughter, Lena, had said on a number of occasions that the stream, and waterfall, at Rossmore, would be a nice place for a statue of the Blessed Virgin.
   
On a fine Sunday evening, at the end of May, 1944, Dermot and Connie O'Leary went for a walk out the Macroom Road. When they reached the stream at  Rossmore Dermot told Connie what John O'Leary had said the previous year, and they agreed it was a suitable place for a 'Lourdes Grotto'.
Connie said "Come on up, and we will ask John Oldham for permission                                                                      When asked, John Oldham said "Take as much land as you want there".
     
They then called to John O'Leary, and told him they would erect the Grotto  at the stream. He gave them the first 2.00 towards the cost, and the next door neighbour, Jeremiah O'Leary, gave 2.00 also.         
         
The Parish Priest and Curate had no objection, though the Curate, Fr. O'Driscoll, suggested they should put the Grotto at Keimeens.

Contributions of 1 .00 each were receivied from 25 persons, including  Donnchadh O Leary, N.T., J. O'Sullivan,(Hotel), Cors. Creedon, (Hotel),         
William Kelleher, Denis J. O'Leary, Agnes Mcsweeney, N.T., May Twohig, N.T., Finbar O'Leary, Paddy Casey, Seamus O'Leary, N.T., John Creedon, Dan Cotter, Sergeant Smyth, Mrs.Ronan(Ballingeary), Dan Jack O'Sulliuan, Andrew Brophy, Eugene Corcoran, and a number of others.         
 
Dermot and Connie purchased the statues from Mr. Bernardi, Paul St.,Cork,for 27-1O-O (27.50), and Timmy Johnny (O'Sullivan) brought them out in his lorry, on top of a load of pollard, with Dermot sitting up on the pollard also.

Danny Sullivan, the mason, was engaged to erect them, to lay out the ground plant some trees and shrubs, and erect a wooden paling and gate in front. The final cost was 37.00, with Connie and Dermot putting in the balance.       
   
Two years later, they asked the C.Y.M.S. committee to take on the care of Grotto, and it was the C.Y.M.S. who got the concrete railings, and iron gate erected and a box put there for contributions towards the upkeep.
   
In 1954, the new P.P., Fr O'Neill, requested, and took possession OF the Key,   saying  " That Grotto out in Rossmore, was blessed by the Bishop, and any money put into the box there, should go into parish funds."
         
Down the years, the Grotto has become a place of devotion to Our Lady, and in the late 1980s a number of apparitions were reported there.