Bob Doyle's Cork Meeting, 20th Feb. 2007
It went very well, there may have been as many as 100 people present. Harry Owens spoke for a few minutes to introduce the film Spanish Earth first. After the film show David Convery spoke about the volunteers from Cork.
Then the chair, Tom O' Driscoll from SIPTU, introduced Bob with a brief synopsis of his life. Bob then gave the same speech he gave at Belfast, and got a rapturous applause. [Here is that speech.]
Then it was opened to a question and answer period. A guy asked questions about communist repression/POUM, and a few were asked of Bob. One was why did he go to Spain, another was what did he think of Frank Ryan and how he ended up, to which he answered that Frank thought he was going home, and that Bob even passed on a note to him to bring home. That's all he knew of it, he said. A question was also asked to Bob about what did he think about Ireland today with all it's consumerism etc. His answer, with a little chuckle was 'I don't!'
Another asked him to fill the audience in on some of his experiences in Spain. He spoke about his difficulties getting to Spain, stowing away in the anchor room of a ship, and that if the anchor had been lowered he would probably have died. He also spoke a bit about San Pedro, how they used to get beaten daily. Another question was asked by a guy about Paul Robeson, the guy who asked said that he was his hero and wanted to know what Bob thought. Bob replied that he had played for them in Spain and that he was great.
The meeting then wrapped up, and a CD was played, Pol MacAdaims 'Internationale' or Connolly Column album I think. Sold about 30 books, and people lined up to thank Bob and for him to sign their books.
There is a collection of Bob's speeches and articles about him, available here.