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Bandon woman creates 3D tour around Michael Collins’ home at Woodfield

September 17th, 2022 11:50 AM

By Siobhan Cronin

A screenshot from Norma O’Connor’s interactive video of Woodfield showing the info points dotted around the area which link to videos and more information on Collins.

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A KEEN history enthusiast who has an interest in 3D recreations of important locations has created an interactive online view of Michael Collins’ birthplace at Woodfield.

Bandon native Norma O’Connor, who is currently based at Red Strand in Clonakilty, had earlier created an interactive video of the torpedo rooms in Camden Fort Meagher in Crosshaven.

And recently she turned her attention to another major task – a video of the homestead of General Michael Collins.

‘I’ve done a lot of research on the War of Independence and the Civil War and I have always been interested in Collins since. He really is a larger than life character, who was cut down on the cusp of achieving his ambition on the steps of his ladder to freedom,’ she said.

The home place of the man whose death at Béal na Bláth was commemorated on the 100th anniversary last month, is a serene and very well preserved OPW site at Woodfield outside Clonakilty.

Norma used over 1,500 images to create an interactive video and published it video online this year at the very time that the Clonakilty man was believed to have been shot, on August 22nd.

Viewers of the YouTube video can pan around the pretty little site outside Lisavaird and view the footprint of the original Collins family home, and some of the stone outbuildings which are still standing and in good condition.

And for anyone lucky enough to also have a virtual reality (VR) headset, they can use the site’s VR capability to be physically walking around Michael Collins’ birthplace from anywhere in the world.

‘That is why I created it. So many people would have liked to be there for the centenary to celebrate Michael and his life’s work, but for various reasons it was not possible. So this immersive virtual reality experience allows them to be there in this most special of places where he grew up with his family.’

Norma’s site is compatible with any PC, Mac or mobile device,’ she pointed out.

There are also little dots – or ‘info points – at various places on the screen which, when clicked, will bring the viewer to a YouTube video of Collins.

‘The idea is to capture how we remember Michael through his family, music, song, poetry, literature, film, documentary and diaries,’ she says.

Now, Norma wants to open up the site so others can add to it. ‘I would like the public to add their memories, photos, videos, memorabilia etc – and feedback is very welcome. I can be contacted at [email protected]

To view the video see michaelcollinsbirthplace.com

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