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Rockmount NS Bike Shelter

Rockmount National School is situated on a hill overlooking Miltown Malbay in Co Clare. Many of its 45 pupils cycle to school each morning and park their bicycles in this half dome shelter. The school was built in 1865 but is still in use today and services the educational needs of some 45 pupils from the rural community nearby.


This marks the first set of pictures which I am putting together in a project which is looking at the current status of small rural schools in Ireland, of which many are under threat of closure for a variety of reasons. Emigration, falling family sizes and the need for parents to travel further to work are some of the more compelling reasons which seem to be affecting the viability of small rural schools such as Rockmount.


I photographed another school not far away from this one and it has recently closed despite having all of the facilities one would need to provide children with a fine education. What a pity it is to see this.


Calumet cc-402 Wide Field Large Format camera

Schneider Angulon 120mm lens

5x4 Fomapan 100 film exposed at 50 iso

F22 @ 1/2 sec

Developed in Rodinal 1:100 for 30 mins semi stand

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Taken on August 22, 2012