The inaugural meeting of The Military Heritage of Ireland Trust was held on 27 August, 1999 at the Defence Forces Headquarters Officers’ Mess, McKee Barracks, Dublin.
It was unanimously agreed that the Trust should be established as a company limited by guarantee. Memorandum of Association and Articles of Association were approved. The Trust is a voluntary body and is not engaged in commercial activities.
The following were elected as Directors:
Col R. Harvey Bicker (Retd), Sir John Gorman, Mr Kevin McGoran, Maj Gen Partick Nowlan (Retd) (Chair), Maj Gen David O’Morchoe (Retd), Mr John Cullinane (USA) and Prof Eunan O’Halpin. Maj Gen Colm Mangan, Deputy Chief of Staff (Support) was the Defence Forces Ex-Officio Director.
At a subsequent meeting, Col William Gibson (Retd), Mr Frank Murray former Secretary-General to the Government, and Dr Pat Wallace Director of the National Museum of Ireland were elected as Directors.
From the outset, the Department of Defence and the Defence Forces provided support to the Trust including the provision of office accommodation and to act as the Trust’s registered address.
The Trust’s registration number is 329565.
The Military Heritage of Ireland Trust was incorporated as a CLG Company on 30th June, 2000, with charitable status.
Since its establishment, the Trust’s Directors are drawn from the different traditions in Ireland, and a variety of backgrounds including business, public service, military service and academia. Its membership mirrors similar backgrounds, with a keen interest in advancing Ireland’s military heritage.
Acknowledging that military heritage is common to the different political and religious traditions on the island, the Trust, as a voluntary organisation, advances an all-Ireland, cross border, non-denomination and non-political approach to military heritage and the story of the Irish soldier.
Recognising our military heritage, the Trust focuses on remembering, honouring and commemorating Irish men and women, from all parts of Ireland, who served worldwide in armed forces, irrespective of the Theatre of Operations, National Colour or Regimental Colour.
Promoting suitable activities, the Trust supports the widest understanding and appreciation of the diversity of Irish worldwide military service, coupled with Ireland’s distinctive military heritage, including the political, diplomatic, economic, social and cultural aspects of that unique heritage.
Projecting an inclusive perspective, the Trust encourages researching, studying and preserving the legacy of Irish men and women who have served with a shared military heritage for future generations.
The Military Heritage of Ireland Trust’s logo consists of a sword and scroll. The sword is titled the Lisnacrogher Sword and the scroll on the sides, (one side is an inversion of the other), are from the sword’s scabbard. In the 1880s, the largest find of Iron Age metalwork ever found in Ireland was made at Lisnacrogher, north of Ballymena in Co. Antrim. The find included swords, scabbards and spearheads.
As prescribed in the Memorandum and Articles of Association, the objectives of the Military Heritage of Ireland Trust (CLG) are:
- To promote a knowledge of the military heritage of Ireland, including its relationship to economic, political, social and cultural affairs, thereby encouraging a general interest in that heritage and fostering an appreciation of it;
- To identify, acquire, maintain and record military and historical objects and information, including archival material, of every description associated or connected with the military heritage of Ireland, and to conserve, restore, repair, re-construct and preserve them;
- To promote, organise and produce projects, exhibitions, seminars, conferences and lectures associated with the military heritage of Ireland;
- To cause to be written and printed, published, issued, circulated or otherwise disseminated, relevant literary, visual and aural material;
- To promote the study of military history;
- To assist and support the National Museum of Ireland, and such other promoters of museums, heritage centres and exhibition venues, as the Trust may from time to time decide, in the development, maintenance and display of military galleries