Welcoming Some American Friends to West Cork


Denis and the team at Lee Valley Ireland had the privilege of welcoming Mike and Debbie Lowe to the wonderful surroundings of the Lee Valley and West Cork during the week. Mike Lowe and Denis have known each other for years and have developed a great friendship throughout the years. 

Mike has been a long serving buyer for the world famous University of Notre Dame in Indiana, USA, and is now enjoying his well earned retirement. The University of Notre Dame has a strong link and connection to Ireland and their American Football team is known as "The Fighting Irish". Notre Dame even played in Dublin's Aviva stadium in 2012 in the Emerald Isle Classic where Mike and the Lee Valley team were in attendance and it was a wonderful event.

Notre Dame Fighting Irish - Lee Valley Ireland


Denis met Mike and his lovely wife Debbie and they first visited Garnish Island in Glengarriff, the spiritual home of the late Hollywood actress Maureen O'Hara. Garnish Island is renowned for its beautiful gardens and it was made even better with the sunny spell we are experiencing in Ireland at the moment. 

It was from there that they travelled to the jewel of the Lee Valley, Gougane Barra where Denis took Mike and Debbie on a tour of the area. Experiencing the stunning scenery of the surrounding mountains and lakes  and visiting Gougane's famous church and the hermitage. They then went to Gougane Barra Hotel for a cup of tea and refreshments.

Denis with Mike And Debbie Lowe at Gougane Barra - The Source of Lee Valley - Lee Valley Ireland Blog

- Denis with Mike And Debbie Lowe at Gougane Barra - The Source of the Lee Valley

Finally, Denis, Mike and Debbie went to Shorten's Bar in Ballingeary and met the rest of the Lee Valley team and they were lucky enough to experience the Ballingeary Pipe Bad preform. But the pipe band were not alone, there was also a special guest in 'The Ancient Men' who are a travelling Morris dancers from England. Their performance can be found in the video below. 

It was fantastic to catch up with Mike and reminisce about time spent in years gone by. It was brilliant to show him some of the attractions of West Cork and he and Debbie greatly enjoyed their visit. They told us it is easy to see how we got the inspiration for our world-famous grandfather shirts through the rugged beauty of West Cork and The Lee Valley.


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