Web Design Limerick | Branding Design Limerick | Amy Mc Design



,
By Sharon Noonan |
August 19, 2015

I have plans to visit the Lammas Fair in Ballycastle, Co Antrim for the first time in over 20 years.  The last time I was there I was working alongside my grandmother, great aunt and sister selling dulse and the infamous Devlins’ Yellowman that is synonymous with the festival.

The purpose of my 2015 visit is to record footage for a radio documentary I am working on and Yellowman is at the heart of the story.  My Dad is coming with me to take part in some interviews and provide some insights into how the Lammas Fair has changed.  However, it is unlikely we will find genuine Yellowman for sale, made with the secret Devlins’ recipe, the details of which were bequeathed to me by my grandmother and great aunt many years ago.

The road trip is bound to conjure up some great memories and I’m sure there will be a rendition or two of this Ruby Murray number  A lasting memory from years ago is the swarms of wasps that appeared when the Yellowman was being laid out.  Devlins’ Yellowman arrived at the Lammas Fair in blocks created by snaking the product when packing it after it left the “production line”.  I love these pics of my father breaking a block of Yellowman in 1967 which I found in the Belfast Telegraph photo archives.  As you can see he had to use a hammer and in today’s safety stringent climate, I imagine he would not only have to wear plastic gloves but also safety goggles to protect his eyes!

Our pitches were in the ideal location.  You couldn’t miss the Devlins’ stalls that were positioned right at the front of the Diamond.  Such was competition for space that one year the neighbouring trader built his stall outside his designated area.  However, he wasn’t prepared for the wrath of my great aunt Katie who took him on fearlessly and told him in no uncertain terms to get within the line.  He protested vehemently to “Missus” but meekly obeyed before inching out bit by bit each time her back was turned.  At one point Katie became so incandescent with rage, I thought she was going to explode.  To be honest it created great laughter over the two days and you could see that in fairness the fecker had great respect for the one he called “Missus.”

Like all events, we hope for good weather but never rely on it.  My recollections are of the weather being fairly good, even some scorching days.  However great aunt Katie didn’t leave it to chance and never failed to bring the Child of Prague with her in the hope that the rain would hold off.  Ireland being Ireland, it rarely did.  Here’s hoping it does next week…

With my grandmother, sister and great aunt at the Lammas Fair.

With my grandmother, sister and great aunt at the Lammas Fair.

tags

Ballycastle, Devlin, Dulse, Lammas Fair, Sharon Noonan, Yellowman

The Best Possible Taste is Ireland’s longest-running food & drink radio show & podcast celebrating 10 years on the airwaves in 2023!

Recent Episodes…

Jenny Flynn

Jenny Flynn

In this Best Possible Taste, we meet to Jenny Flynn, Executive Chef at Faithlegg, Co Waterford. Jenny has built long-lasting relationships with local producers and artisan suppliers in Ireland creating bespoke seasonal menus that capture a taste of Waterford across...

read more
Simon Regan

Simon Regan

In this BPT interview chef Simon Regan talks about the National Commis Chef Apprenticeship and the National Culinary Skills Competition that took place in Killarney, Co Kerry in February 2024. At present in Ireland there are currently 181 apprentices on the programme...

read more
Eunice , Waterford Festival of Food

Eunice , Waterford Festival of Food

In this Best Possible Taste, Eunice Power shares details about the 2024 Waterford Festival of Food that takes place from Friday 19 April - Sunday 21 April.  The festival is one of Ireland’s longest running food and community festivals and has an extensive programme of...

read more
Chef Keith Boyle

Chef Keith Boyle

In this Best Possible Taste we meet chef Keith Boyle who has been appointed executive chef of the multi-award-winning estate Mountain View in Kilkenny. Previously crowned best chef in Leinster and Munster at the Irish Restaurant Awards, Keith talks about his culinary...

read more

Want to be my next guest?

sign up below and be the first to be notified when I’m holding interviews for the show

* indicates required