Remembering Nora Daly

We recently said goodbye to our friend and comrade Nora Daly. Nora was wife and soulmate of her beloved Mick, together they had a large family of six children and a squad of grandchildren at which Nora was the heart.  

The salt the earth is a phrase that sums up Nora Daly and the world is a lesser place without her.  She was a socialist and a fighter for the working class.  She was a caring, hardworking, practical straight talking proud working class woman who didn’t suffer fools gladly. You were always glad to have Nora on your side as she always had your back. She instinctively stood up for the oppressed and the underdog. She was very funny, actually, she was hilarious at times.

In the 1980s Nora and Mick played a key role in the development of Militant and socialist ideas in North Clondalkin, they were a team. This was not an easy task in the 1980’s with no car, limited public transport, not a lot of cash and six children, Nora also worked a lot of nights on her feet  as a silver service waitress. The house in Moorfield was open to everyone. Nora was always there ready with the cup of tea to talk, listen and usually come up with a solution and a plan.

The right-wing witch hunt in the Labour Party that eventually led to the expulsion of Militant began in the old Dublin West constituency where Nora and Mick lived. They fought tooth and nail against the right wing to maintain the Labour Party as a genuine party for the working class.  The North Clondalkin branch was closed down by the right wing when they were unable to take it over. 

They were both stalwarts of the community in North Clondalkin which as a working-class area faced many challenges. There was not a community campaign in that period that they were not involved in.  During the Morecrete occupation in the 1980s Nora would walk from her home in Moorefield to the picket line with a big pot of stew for the strikers perched  in the pram beside the baby with the rest of the children running behind her, knowing Nora she probably brought the dog as well.  She was solid in her support and was there day in and day out. This is just one example of many where Nora was always right there where she was needed. No fuss, no praise needed just doing what needed to be done. 

The Socialist Summer camps in the early 1980s were big events.  Nora and Mick used their skills from the catering industry to organise the kitchen and fed hundreds of people three times a day. It was hard work but somehow, they managed to make peeling tons and tons of spuds an entertaining event for the kitchen rota. Many the young person they saved from hunger at those camps. 

At one of  the camps Nora returned from a meeting to have 6 daughters, not 4 brought back from the creche. Nora was a redhead; all her children are redheads so the creche rota assumed all the redheads must be Dalys. Nora not the slightest bit phased, fed and washed the two extras. When their father arrived to claim his children they wanted to stay with the Dalys for the night. 

While a very practical woman, Nora, who left school at 14 made every effort to develop her political understanding, she did political introductions, wrote articles, and advocated for her ideas. 

Nora and Mick moved to rural Clare many years ago, made it their home and became part of that community. Many more chapters of Nora’s life were written in Clare.

 We salute and remember the key role  Nora played in our history and the history of our class

Rest in Easy Nora, you or your contribution will not be forgotten.

 

Article from the Militant 1986 by Nora transcribed. 

 

Life in Clondalkin

Clondalkin is a rapidly growing community with a large working class population. It has grown over the last ten years from a small village with a few small housing estates to a population of approximately 18,000.  As with most working class housing estates we were promised the facilities later on. Over the past years there has been very little done. There are a lot of young children in the area and we haven’t even got one playground for them. 

There is nothing for the youth to do except hang around the local shops. They have nothing to look for forward to, certainly not a job with a decent wage. At the moment there are nearly 4,000 unemployed in the area – so what chance have the young school leavers? I could go on and on. What we need are proper places for our children to play in. I believe that the only way young people can have a future is by joining Labour Youth and fighting for socialism. 

Nora Daly

Clondalkin Labour Party.

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