Billy Nolan (b. 1941)
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Billy Nolan (b. 1941)


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Track 1: Billy Nolan traces his family background and explains that the Nolan family have been in business in Tralee since 1847. His grandmother came from Ballyheigue and his mother, Molly O’Connor from Castleisland, went into the drapery business with the Ryle family, opening the Ryle and Nolan shop in The Mall, Tralee. He explains that he went into business in Tralee in 1966 with the support of his father, who ran the business in Dominick Street named The Treasure Chest for one year while Billy managed Twomey’s Supermarket and bar from 1965 to 1967, after which he ran The Treasure Chest. Billy had previously worked in the grocery business in London for five years. Track 2: He recalls his parents’ financial support of his business in Dominick Street, Tralee, and the jewellery business which he later began. Track 3: He became President of Tralee Chamber of Commerce in 1979 and he recalls working closely with Tralee Urban District Council at this time. He also served as Secretary of Tralee Tidy Towns at one time. In 1970 he married Margaret Hayes from Oakpark, Tralee, and he emphasises her support of the family business over the years. The Nolans purchased Hilsers’ Jewellers in Castle Street in more recent years, and the family now run this business in conjunction with the original shop in Dominick Street. Track 4: He recalls the flooding in Tralee and the great damage inflicted on the town and he gives his views on the work of the new Tralee Chamber Alliance of which he is a member. Track 5: In 1996 he became President of the Retail Jewellers of Ireland, a role he held for two years, and he discusses this time. He also talks about rates in Tralee and the location of the Tourist Office in the town. Track 6: A discussion ensues on the experience of being self-employed in Ireland and on the businesses in the centre of Tralee. He suggests that it may be a good idea to confine the position of Mayor of Tralee to a person with business experience.

Additional information



Audio series:

Reflections on the Urban District of Tralee Collection


128 kbps

Download time limit:

48 hours

File size(s):

11.29 MB, 10.60 MB, 16.61 MB, 7.51 MB, 7.68 MB

Number of files:


Product ID:



A life in business in Tralee

Recorded by:

Maurice O’Keeffe – Irish Life and Lore