The Clarenbridge Oyster Festival
The visitors book was first opened in 1959, though the story begins in 1954. Paddy Burke himself, Brian Collins and Brendan Allen conceived and gave birth to the 1st Oyster Festival. The site was to have been the nearby Mulrook Pier, but after consultation with Mr. Allison and Lord Killanin, Tarea Pier was selected.
At the pier head, there was to have been music. There wasn’t! A taxi man, Mattie Burns, raced to Kinvara, and procured an accordion. The party then arrived at Paddy Burke’s for their oysters. The festival was billed as “The Clarenbridge Oyster Festival”. It was filmed by George Fleishman. A total of thirty -our people attended – mostly Dubliners.
From this small beginning the Clarenbridge Oyster Festival has become a world-renowned event with over 10,000 visitors from both Ireland and abroad flocking to the village to savour its friendly ambience and hospitality and to consume over 50,000 oysters.