The Garage Bar Dublin

Working on a new Film Documentary project I came across these Images i took back in late 1992 . This was the original Garage Bar which was opened in what was the enclosed car-park for the Clarence Hotel . The Premises itself was located at the back of the Hotel Building on Essex Street East in the hub of Temple Bar .

This a “pop up” bar Idea, with the original walls adorned with all kinds of engine and petrol station memorabilia as well as beer signage , most of the seating taken out of an old CIE bus . Except for the entrance the original steel shutters remained in place and the flooring consisted concrete and sawdust .

I was to take a selection of images for the new owners of the Hotel who were abroad on tour when the Bar opened – It remained open for a while before shutting when the Hotel underwent major renovations. A second incarnation of The Garage Bar opened on the site in 2010 and closed its doors in 2020 . Enjoy the memories .

The Session

Way back in my “Black and White” 35mm film days while trying to establish myself as Professional Photographer i was given the opportunity to work (for the experience !) on a two day music festival where national and international musicians played on the same stage – The event called “The Session” was recorded for TV and took place in the brand new Dublin venue The Point now called 3 Arena

Back-David Heffernan, ? , Ger Heffernan front- Philip Donnelly and Harry Crosbie

Billed as the official opening of the venue (There had in-fact been two previous Events – The 1988 fine Gael Ard Fheis and following that, A “Huey Lewis and the News” concert ) . But this was the first of many Star studded gatherings to be held at the venue . It took place on the 25th and 26th November 1988 produced by David and Ger Heffernan of frontier Films and the Show was directed by Declan Lowney .


The Artists that performed that weekend included Mary Black with The Black Family and Rosie Flores
The Chieftains with Flaco Jimenez and band,Guy Clark with Arcady (featuring a young Sharon Shannon) and Jimmie Dale Gilmore, John Prine with Lyle Lovett and Marty Stuart, Don Everly and the Dead Cowboys with Jack Clement, Joe Ely and Wilko Johnson – I managed to take a selection of live images with my Nikon f2A couple of lenses and half a dozen rolls of Kodak tri-x B+ W 35mm which i pushed by 2 stops and used a bit of Holy water in the development in the hope that the shots would come out – They did and so 33 years later i have revisited them – I am posting a couple of the live shots for this blog Enjoy !


The International Financial Services Centre (IFSC) is an area of central Dublin and part of the CBD established in the 1980s as an urban regeneration area and Special Economic Zone (SEZ) on the derelict state owned former port authority lands of the reclaimed North Wall and George’s Dock areas of the Dublin Docklands. The term has now morphed into use as a metonym for the Irish financial services industry as well as being used as an address and still being classified as an SEZ.

It officially began in 1987 as an SEZ on an 11-hectare docklands site in central Dublin, with EU approval to apply a 10% corporate tax rate for “designated financial services activities” on the site. Before the expiry of this EU approval in 2005, the Irish Government legislated to effectively have a national flat rate by reducing the overall Irish corporate tax rate from 32% to 12.5% which was introduced in 2003.

An additional primary goal of the IFSC was to assist the urban renewal and development programme of the North Wall area as a result of its dereliction following the advent of containerisation in the 1960s.

 The original IFSC 1 (development of the 11 hectare site from 1987 to 1997 under the Custom House Docks Development Authority “CHDDA”) comprises the area between Memorial Road, Amiens Street, Lower Sheriff Street (including part of Crinan Strand), Guild Street, and the River Liffey along North Wall Quay and Custom House Quay. Adjacent districts include East Wall to the north and Spencer Dock to the east; the Custom House, Busáras and the city centre lie to the west along Store Street and Abbey Street. Within the IFSC, the original development area lies west of Commons Street.

As a young budding photographer trying to get my foot on the professional ladder and having received permission from Mr Frank Benson (The then, Chairman of Custom House Docks Development Authority)  – in late 1987 and early 1988 i went about  recording this area of the Dublin Docklands using a 35mm still camera and some B+W film before it was redeveloped. This in turn led on to the larger project of trying to record the whole of the Docklands . Some of the results can be seen and this small production i put together in late 2019

I have chosen a selection of the images i took for the project for this Blog – Enjoy!  

A Snapshot of Howth Harbour Past !

Howth Harbour CIRCA 1950

Howth is a picturesque village clustered around and above a busy sailing and fishing port on the north coast of the rugged peninsula, which forms the northern side of Dublin Bay on Ireland’s East Coast.

Howth Harbour was built from 1807 and was at that time the main Dublin harbour for the packet boats from the UK. Howth Rd was built to ensure rapid transfer of incoming mail and dispatches from the harbour to the city. The replacement of sailing packets with steam packets in 1818 reduced the transit time from Holyhead to seven hours, but Howth’s period of importance was short – by 1813 the harbour was already showing signs of silting up, and it was superseded by Dun Laoghaire in 1833. The most famous arrival to Howth was King George IV, who visited Ireland in 1821 and is chiefly remembered because he staggered off the boat in a highly inebriated state. He did manage to leave his footprint at the point where he stepped ashore on the West Pier.

Howth 17 Sailing boats rigging in Howth Harbour CIRCA 1920

In 1914 Robert Erskine Childers’ yacht, Asgard, brought a cargo of 900 rifles into the port to arm the nationalists. During the Civil War, Childers was court-martialled by his former comrades and executed by firing squad for illegal possession of a revolver.

I spent the first 25 years of my life growing up in this Village and have very fond memories of both the place and the people . The fishing industry was the main employer for many decades, in fact my first job after leaving school was to go out fishing – Sadly this industry has dwindled in Howth, with only a handful of full time Howth fishermen left today.

I was given the opportunity to try and a copy and restore a collection of local images. These images were all shot on Glass plate (both positives and Negatives were included in this rare collection). Unfortunately given there age and due to bad storage over the years most of them were very badly damaged but i feel repairable – As for “Provenance of Age” Given the material they were shot on “glass plate” – The fact that “The Church of the Assumption Howth ” which was built in 1899, dose not appear in some of the photos.

Howth Village CIRCA 1895

And finally the Howth Coastgaurd Station ,which was located at the end of the West pier is clearly visible in quiet a number of the images (This Station was blow up by the IRA in early 1921) I can make a Guess that the images were taken between the 1890s and the 1950s .

There is still a fair bit of work to do but i have manage to restore a batch and am looking forward to getting on with the project – I have chosen a selection to share on this blog – Enjoy !

Saint Marys Mansions Dublin Redevelopment

Saint Marys Mansions Redevelopment 2020

St. Mary’s Mansions is located in Dublin 1, between Sean McDermot Street to the north and Railway Street to the south. It was originally built in the late 1940s. It has undergone a total refurbishment bringing it up to current standards. The extensive works included the addition of two new floors creating 80 high-quality homes for the local community.

With the 23 million euro redevelopment A number of key features were included in the redesign “specifically to enhance the overall quality of life within the development” and include communal social and play areas, a community room, and socially aware landscaping.

The refurbishments at St Mary’s Mansions are the first of its kind in the area and were spurred by the Mulvey report, published in 2016. Well done to all involved it was a great pleasure to photograph the finished project .

#osheaphotography #dublin #dublinredevelopment #dublincitycouncil #cluidhousing

ZS-NTE Douglas DC-3 Springbok Classic Air / Aer Lingus.

Douglas DC-3 ZS-NT3 (1943) in Aer Lingus Livery – David O’Shea Architectural,Commercial,Editorial,Press and PR Photographer Dublin.

I had the pleasure of photographing this lovely lady some time ago . This DC-3 was manufactured in September 1943 . It served with the Royal Air Force until transfed to the South African Air Force in 1945. There it remained until retired in 1995. It was sold and registered ZS-NTE and after a period of 7 years in storage was restored to flying condition in 2009 and modified from a C47 cargo version to a DC3 passenger configuration.

Douglas DC-3 ZS-NT3 (1943) in Aer Lingus Livery
Douglas DC-3 ZS-NT3 (1943) in Aer Lingus Livery

Aer Lingus introduced the DC3 in April 1940 but World War 2 interfered with operations and the type became more relevant when nine former USAAF C-47s were purchased in 1945, seven of which were converted to DC-3 airliner standard and two were parted out.  In addition, two new DC-3s were delivered off the Douglas production line in February 1946. These became core to the fleet in expanding services to cities including London, Amsterdam and Paris. The replacement aircraft was the Fokker F27 Friendship, but these did not replace all of the DC-3s, and five aircraft remained in service until 1963-1964.

The DC-3 is fitted with 28 seats in a 2-2 configuration. There is a crew jump seat beside the rear passenger door. The aircraft is fitted with a radio operators station behind the cockpit and has a cargo space too.The DC3 can fly as a high as 20,800 feet, has a range of almost 1500 miles and a top speed of 192mph. Aer Lingus DC3s were powered by Pratt and Whitney R-1830-92 Twin Wasp engines.

Today, more than six decades after the last one was delivered, hundreds of DC-3s are still flying and still earning their keep by carrying passengers or cargo.

Douglas DC-3 ZS-NT3 (1943) in Aer Lingus Livery

Bewley’s Grafton Street

Bewley’s is an Irish hot beverage company, located in Dublin and founded in 1840, which operates internationally. Its primary business operations are the production of tea, coffee and the operations of cafés. Bewley’s has operations in Ireland, the UK and the United States.

The Bewley family were Quakers who originated in Cumberland and moved to Ireland in the 17th century. They entered the tea trade, and in 1835, Samuel Bewley and his son Charles landed 2,099 chests of tea shipped from Canton in China. The Bewley family subsequently expanded into the coffee trade and in the late 19th century, they opened cafes in South Great George’s Street in 1894, and Westmoreland Street in 1896. The flagship Grafton Street café, sometimes described as a “Dublin landmark, was opened by Ernest Bewley in 1927.

The Grafton Street building had once housed Whyte’s Academy, a school whose pupils included the Duke of Wellington and Robert Emmet. I had the pleasure of been commissioned to photograph this iconic building after one of its major renovations -.For this blog i have resurrected some of the images from this shoot – Thank you for visiting and enjoy !

The Walled Town of Derry

Irish Walled Towns – David Oshea Photography –

I had the great pleasure in working with author John Givens and Alison Harvey from the Heritage Council on this Irish Walled Towns Book . As part of my brief i had to travel to twenty different walled towns in the 32 counties of Ireland , all part of Irish Walled Towns Network (IWTN), where i photographed and produced a selection of Images that i felt best represented what remained of the original structures.

One of the many Towns i had the pleasure of photographing was Derry in the North of Ireland . Dating Back to the 7th Century this walled town sits on a hillside 40 meters above River Foyle. I spent a Day walking and Photographing the wonderful architecture of this beautiful walled enclosure.

Despite experiencing four seasons in a day with the weather i did manage to come away with what i needed . I have uploaded a selection of some of the images that were chosen – Thank you for visiting .


Ballymun is on the outer suburb of Dublin.  This development  began it life in the 1960s to accommodate a housing crisis in the inner city areas of Dublin. The area became well known for its high-rise tower blocks and flat complexes. It has several sub-districts such as Sillogue and Poppintree, and is in close proximity to Dublin Airport.

Architectural and Exterior Photography Dublin - David Oshea Phot


The seven 15-storey towers were named after Irish Republican revolutionaries, to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the 1916 Easter Rising. The flat complexes consisted of five 8-storey “districts” (Balbutcher, Balcurris, Coultry, Shangan and Sillogue) and three 4-storey “districts,” two of which were part of Shangan and Sillogue, the third being located in Sandyhill. The Poppintree area of Ballymun was constructed in the late 1970s.

Some social problems occurred in the early years, as families which had grown up in dense city terraces close to Dublin’s retail core, found themselves at the edge of the city, with few amenities beyond a travelling shop. Over time, Ballymun became notorious for a number of social problems, such as drug abuse and unemployment, and was impacted by negative media coverage of the area.


In 1997, a regeneration plan was announced, which led to demolition of the flats and their replacement by new low-rise housing and some civic amenities.

The creation of Ballymun Regeneration Limited as a limited company controlled by Dublin City Council initiated the beginning of the demolition of the Ballymun flats and the emergence of a “new town” of Ballymun with the residents generally rehoused in new “state of the art” housing in Ballymun. The new housing is a mixture of public, private, voluntary and co-operative housing with many other amenities, including reworked park areas, a major City Council office facility, Health Service facilities, a public leisure centre, the Axis arts centre, student accommodation, a new hotel, and some renewed retail facilities to be developed.

Architectural and Exterior Photography Dublin - David Oshea Phot

In 2004 i spent time recording some of the last remaining areas of the old Ballymun and photographing the construction of some of the brand  new Ballymun. All the images were shot with my fujifilm finepix s1 pro and i used a my   Nikon 17-35 mm 2.8 lens.

I have revisited this project and uploaded some of the images  enjoy !