The Bandstand at the East Pier with Some Irish Lights Vessels
This view can be dated to post 1901, when the third vessel on the right, the Irish Lights tender, S.S Alexandra, was launched. There are several Irish Lights vessels and a warship in the picture. The one behind the bandstand is a lightship, one of a great many manned vessels that were moored around the coast to delineate points of danger and safe water. On the right is the SS.Tearaght and beyond her is the S.S. Alert, both Irish lights tenders. Alert was the smallest of the tenders and had been converted from a naval gunboat. The furthest ship away on the right is the Royal Naval Guardship HMS Melampus, stationed at Kingstown form 1892 until 1903. Two ladies sitting on the bench are dressed in the fashion of the Edwardian era.
The beautiful cast iron bandstand and the accompanying shelter on the higher level of the pier, built in 1890, have been carefully restored, but are used all too infrequently nowadays, unlike they era to which they originally belong. Music concerts with brass bands were a common occurrence back then. There were a great many British Army regiments stationed in Ireland, all with their brass bands. These, and the bands of the Dublin Metropolitan Police, The Royal Irish Constabulary and a host of bands from the different Townships, Working Men’s clubs and trade unions all regularly contributed to the music scene with open air concerts. There were usually several concerts per week on the pier during the Summer season The East pier lighthouse, raised to its present level in 1896, can be seen. The S.S. Tearaght was the ship from which Captain Thomas McCombie carried out the rescue of the crew of the sailing ship Palme in Dublin Bay in 1895. Fifteen Lifeboat-men from the Kingstown R.N.L.I. Station had been lost on Christmas Eve as they attempted to rescue the crew of the Palme.
Credit: Simon Coate