Peadar Ó Conaire
Founding Guaire Editor, Peadar Ó Conaire, recalls how the magazine started.
“How it started was peculiar because I came to Kilmacduagh in November 1966 and then moved to Gort town in 1970 to become principle of the boys’ school. I had wanted to start a magazine in Gort and got in touch with Fr. Enda Glynn in Ros an Mhil, because he had a successful parish magazine going there which I had seen while at university.
“So the next thing he was transferred to Gort to my great joy and I approached him and he was delighted with the idea so we sat down together with the late Brendan Long, a teacher in KIltartan and Josephine Ward, a local teacher and artist who is still involved and has designed many covers through the years. That meeting was in September 1978 and we got the first issue out in October of that year.
“The photography was done by renowned photographer Jimmy Walsh of Galway. Fr Enda was teaching in the vocational school at the time, so he got the young people of the area involved distributing it and selling it, ‘Advertising agents’ he called them. It was a small magazine that year. The first one I remember was about 32 pages and cost 25p,” he recollected.
“We were at a meeting and we had no name for the magazine and Fr Enda said he knew someone who would be able to help. He rang Fr Martin Coen, a native of Gort, who was a curate in Craughwell, he came up with it straight away. ‘Guaire’ he said, ‘it has to be Guaire, after the famous king.’ So that is how the magazine got its name,” Peadar explained.