Alan Slattery, Editor & Post Production Supervisor at Cartoon Saloon
What's your idea of a perfect day, or perfect weekend out in Kilkenny?
My perfect day in Kilkenny would have to start off with the perfect breakfast. Billy Byrnes or Matt The Millers would be my favourite breakfast haunts, but to be fair we are spoiled for choice here! Kilkenny is magic when the weather is good and seen as how it’s my perfect day let’s say the sun is splitting the stones, so I’d love nothing more than a stroll through town with a coffee in my hand, maybe working in a lap of the Castle Park. To escape the heat (when it does get sunny) and the crowds I love to go down to Butler Gallery to take a look at whatever exhibition they have running. It’s like an oasis of calm down there, and it’s so quiet that you forget you’re in the city. Sure at that stage it’s time for lunch and the restaurant in the Hibernian Hotel is my favourite place to eat in Kilkenny. To round off the perfect day in Kilkenny I’d have to end up in Cleere’s for a pint of Smithwick’s and maybe one of their pizzas… so in conclusion, my perfect day involves visiting some of Kilkenny’s finest eateries!
Who has made the greatest contribution to Kilkenny in your lifetime - and why?
The one person who has made the greatest contribution to Kilkenny in my lifetime is Mike Kelly. Through founding Young Irish Film Makers in 1991 he allowed so many young Kilkenny people to realise their dream of becoming a filmmaker or an actor or an animator or a writer… I have no doubt that I would have had to move to Dublin or London or even further to do what I’m doing for a living and I’m so grateful to Mike that I’m able to do what I love in my hometown.
What's your first Kilkenny memory?
One of my earliest memories of Kilkenny would probably be walking into town with my Mam of a Saturday morning to do all the bits an pieces in the L&N and the Post Office, and of course stopping off in Mrs White’s on the way home for a bag of sweets.
What's your favourite part of the county - and why?
My favourite part of Kilkenny would probably be at home with Rafael… but if I had to venture out there’s nowhere more beautiful than Woodstock in Inistioge. I could spend hours walking around or just sitting looking at the beautiful gardens.
What do you think gives Kilkenny it's unique identity?
I think the fact that Kilkenny is so small, yet packs a hefty punch in terms of tourism and local amenities helps the city and county stand out from the rest.We have thriving arts, sporting, and business communities and some of the nicest people in the country!
Do you have a favourite local writer or author?
I don’t know too many local writers or authors but once writer that has had a big influence on my life is John Morton. I’ve been lucky enough to collaborate with him on a number of film projects and I really love his work with Devious Theatre.
What's the biggest challenge facing the county today?
I think one of the biggest challenges facing Kilkenny is segregation. There’s so much to be gained by putting aside differences and working together.
If you had the power to change one thing in, or about Kilkenny, what would it be?
If I had the power to change one thing in Kilkenny I would build an arts centre. If I had the power to change two things in Kilkenny I’d build an arts centre and then I’d fix the timing on the traffic lights on Parliament Street by the entrance to Market Cross.