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Sherkin's ‘avant-garde' Stella is fondly remembered

March 15th, 2018 10:10 PM

By Jackie Keogh

The late Stella O'Callaghan ran the Garrison House Bed and Breakfast which is now the Islanders' Rest.

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THE late Stella O’Callaghan will be remembered as one of the great characters of Sherkin Island.

That’s according to Dr Rose O’Driscoll who wrote to The Southern Star saying that Stella O’Callaghan (87), formerly of Sherkin Island and Ballincollig, was her friend and mentor.

Dr O’Driscoll said she was only 12 years old when she first went to work for Stella and her late husband, Tim, at the Garrison House Bed and Breakfast, which was later developed into a hotel, and is now known the Islanders’ Rest.

She said: ‘My memories of working for Stella at that time are not of hard work, long hours, late nights, of which there were plenty. No, my memories are of a lovely, vivacious woman, with luscious black hair and twinkly eyes who was full of mischief and fun. 

‘Not only did she teach me how to cook, but she also encouraged me to sing songs, to enjoy good wine, the company of others and the beauty that is Sherkin Island.   

‘In the 1970s, Sherkin Island attracted a distinctly alternative group of holidaymakers, such as musicians, artists, singers and poets. 

‘The more eccentric the guest, the better Stella enjoyed their company, their stories, and their lifestyles. 

‘At heart she, too, was a bohemian and passed that love of an avant-garde approach to life on to all those she met along the way.’

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