How you can help
The Percy French Summer School
Recognised for thought-provoking lectures and outstanding performances
The wonderful story so far
The Percy French Summer School (the Festival’s original name) was initiated to illuminate the neglected historical and sociological context of Percy French’s life and work. Held annually in the second week in July at Castlecoote House (a fine Georgian house that incorporates remains of a medieval castle, each of historic note) in Percy French’s native county, Roscommon.
The format of a morning programme of thought-provoking lectures combined with aftenoon performances of music, poetry and monologues has been enjoyed by full houses every year.
The School’s Honorary President, His Excellency, President of Ireland, Michael D. Higgins, pictured here addressing the School audience at Castlecoote House in 2012. Picture courtesy of Irish TV.
From the start the School proved to be very attractive to both academic lecturers and an appreciative, intelligent audience eager to discuss important topics relevant to Ireland today. In the intimate setting compelling question and answer sessions follow many of the lectures. The School has consistently attracted an impressive roll-call of lecturers (thinkers, authors, academics, and politicians) and performances by outstanding musicians and singers. The range of lectures and events in each year’s programme reflects a spectrum of issues that impact life in Ireland today and foreseeable future. Each year is dedicated to a theme. Please see the on-line archive for full details.
Recognition & Support
The stature of the Percy French Summer School has been recognized by and attracted support from leading organizations including: the Arts Council; Department of Education and Skills; Fáilte Ireland; Roscommon County Council Library Services; and Roscommon Integrated Development Company RIDC.
We need your support
Become a Supporter or Sponsor of the School
As you can imagine, maintaining the School is a complex and costly operation: organizing the schedule; arranging the speakers and agreeing the topics; writing, editing, producing and distributing the brochure; maintaining the web site; meeting the needs of the lecturers and the performers; arranging the food; and making it all run smoothly on the day whatever occurs; and of course making sure the audience is sitting is comfortably.
The North Down Percy French Society (Bangor, Northern Ireland) generously lends many of Percy French’s paintings and memorabilia to both the Summer School and Roscommon Library for display throughout the Festival each year.
The Society is the custodian of the bequest of materials from Percy French’s two daughters Ettie and Joan French and other generous benefactors.
The school enjoys ongoing active working relations with the society throughout the year. For further information on the Society see: www.percyfrench.co.uk.