On Wednesday 26 April, thousands of British reinforcements arrived at Kingstown (Dun Laoghaire) and began their approach into the city centre. A detachment of the Sherwood Foresters were ordered to make their way towards Mount Street bridge and attack the Schoolhouse. The military wrongly believed that this building was being held by the Volunteers.
Unknown to them the Volunteers occupied a number of buildings in the area including No. 25 Northumberland Road, the Parochial Hall, between No. 25 and Mount Street bridge and Clanwilliam House, on the city side of the bridge.
Joe Clarke was one of four Volunteers stationed in the Parochial Hall, which had the advantage of being situated further in from the main road.
We had the full view of the troops advancing up Northumberland Road. They had very little cover.
The British soldiers were easy targets for the Volunteers who waited until they passed by Malone’s position before opening fire. Taken completely by surprise they were targeted by the Volunteers in the Parochial Hall and Clanwilliam House.
We just fired away at them.
Joe Clarke was a member of ‘C’ Company, 3rd Battalion, Dublin Brigade, Irish Volunteers.
Joe Clarke was interviewed for the programme 'The Reluctant Surrender', broadcast on Radio Éireann, 3 April 1972. Photograph of Joe Clarke courtesy of RTÉ Archives.