Locals and fans from around the world are rallying on the Facebook social network to renew the dream of seeing “The Quiet Man Cottage” restored to its former cinematic glory as it appeared in the 1951 movie The Quiet Man. Today, the structure is barely recognizable as it lies in shambles.
For Paddy McCormick, from Belfast, this dream began in 1998. As an ardent fan of the movie he began what he termed a “pilgrimage” to visit the film sites. He was delighted to find most of the areas just as they were on the screen. Unfortunately, his dream trip fell short when he found the once romantic cottage of Sean and Mary Kate in total shambles on a neglected farm lot. He decided to try to do something to restore the cottage. He made two vows: (1) to make the cottage exactly as it was at the time of filming, and (2) to make sure that it would not be exploited for purely commercial purposes, but serve as a historic part of Ireland and a tribute to the legacy of John Ford. Maureen O’Hara, who starred with John Wayne in this John Ford film masterpiece, said, “Ireland is the star of this film.” Winton Hoch, gifted cinematographer, used his skills to capture the Emerald Isle in its Technicolor panorama for all the world to see.
Paddy is in the process of setting up a non-profit foundation, which hopefully could buy the site, restore the cottage and make sure that any money generated from visitors to the site would be used to manage and maintain the site in perpetuity. He contacted heads of Irish government, but unfortunately the one stumbling block is the American owner’s unwillingness to sell the property. Paddy had pretty much given up on his dream until Facebook and several other parties with the same mission surfaced.
They are now combining their efforts to bring national and global attention to this historic mission. Paddy has registered the “White O’Morn Foundation” and with the help of supporters, continues to move forward. It is everyone’s hope that Maureen O’Hara, who offers encouragement to these efforts, can see this happen in her lifetime.
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