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ATG Publishing are delighted to announce the publication of our 'IMPACT' play script.
Performed to sell out houses since the first production in 2019, IMPACT is the story of Ireland's worst train disaster in Armagh in 1889.
Buy your own copy, relive performances and get a sense of how this tragedy shaped Armagh and world rail travel for years to come.

All performances now sold out for Thursday, Friday and Saturday.

Thank you all for your support and wishing  you enjoy Byddi Lee's new play and it's very relevant message.

Winner of this month's top prize is Matthew Toner with his poem 'Regret'  (Split Milk) theme.

Matthew was presented with his winnings by ATG secretary Byddi Lee.

Regret, its a word we all know, it can sometimes be big, sometimes small and sometimes it can be about nothing at all. You said the wrong thing at the wrong time to the wrong person, you bought the wrong gift, you were the right person in the wrong situation, 

Life can both help or hinder your view of regret, the longer you live, the less you might fret about the past, or you may start to ponder, wonder and worry that this feeling might never go away, but life is too short to dwell on such things, mistakes they all were at least we hope. It's easy to reflect on the past, but try not to dwell on it too much or you may be doomed to repeat it. Instead look to the present the future the now, all will be ok, we'll be fine, somehow. 

By Matthew Toner. 


Highly Commended certificate for March awarded to Dublin based American Brett Lemick with 'The Lines we Draw'

on our 'Split Milk' theme.

The Lines We Draw   By Brett Lemick. 

Bursts of bubbling slap joy won’t wait, they erupt with or without you.

Friends dance around fires As you read the warmth from a screen.

Revelry echos into empty shot glasses, Smoke waf ting from their matching shirts.

The campfire-crackle fades As you lower the volume from under wrinkled sheets.

A faceless figure roots against you.

Of course, you think — again, you say.

Programming planned to harm, Distance designed to divide.

This isn’t you. You wouldn’t construct a room so small.

You wouldn’t break the tap that showers happy lit tle cells, Born to bounce out of line.

But you did. You do.


APRIL's themes  1) Inner thoughts (Which one's should we listen to)

                              2) Fears and Courage (Experiences)

                              3) My Afterlife (Is there one?)




This month's 30-3-30 poetry competition themes.

30 line max - 3 themes- £30 prize

1) Spring /Easter ( New life; Rebirth )
2) Split milk (Ops! ; reflect on lifes regrets)
3) From Youth to Euthanasia ( We celebrate good health/ vitality yet paradoxically compelled to endure a painful terminal illness .)
Next Open Mic March 29th. Entry to 30-3-30 via email attachment to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. before Sun 24th midnight.
30 line max with a connection to the chosen topic or topics. Email up to three entries as an attachment to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. before the closing date of midnight Sunday 24th.
Winner and Highly Commended to read their entries at our Open Mic in Abbey Lane Theatre on the 29th March 8pm. 
Both winning entries to be published on our website and social media.

Presented by Rachel Toner our winner of £30 cash prize is Michael Kennedy with his poem 'The Last Child Married' in the Family Affairs theme.

Darren Rogan received the 'Highly commended certificate' with his poem 'Palestine' in the What Matters theme.  Both poems included here. We wish to note Paula Craig's entry 'Life is a trial ' was a strong contender this month and well received by our audience.

Themes for March's competition; 1) Spring /Easter ( New life; Re birth)

                                                            2) Split milk   (Accidents; regrets)

                                                           3) From Youth to Euthanasia

                                                             (We celebrate good health/ vitality yet expected to endure terminal illness).


Next Open Mic March 29th.  Entry to 30-3-30 via email attachment to  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. before Sun 24th midnight.

'The Last Child Married' by Michael Kennedy.


'The Last Child Married'

Deeply grooved our hands

let slip the straining hawsers

Our little vessels sail away

Not yet fully crewed but captained and first mated.

Confident we have made them world worthy, life tight

Stocked the galleys

Provided maps and compass

Opened communication lines

Knowing ahead lie churning waters, rocks uncharted

And siren calls .

As the muscle memory of the tugging fades we fear

And pray the storm anchors hold. 



'Palestine' by Darren Rogan. 

It's a disgrace…, How are the Israelis allowed to wipe out an entire race,

While the World watches and turns away, ignoring innocent faces each and every day.

Surely there's something we all can do,

Shout to governments, who are clueless, oh it's true. 

Safe places assigned, but not safe at all,

Palestinians herded, awaiting their fall.

Like cattle they're led, to meet their doom,

All they want is safety, not doom and gloom.

In the struggle, a flickering flame,

Hope persists, despite the shame.

From Gaza's shores to Jerusalem's gates,

Resilience endures, patiently waits.

Where are all the nations now, that have power to end, This madness, this sorrow, they could surely mend? 

Media biased, their narratives spun, Al Jazeera reveals, the truth they shun.

Turn on the news, see the lies they impart,

Corrupt agendas, tearing souls apart.





And like we had never been away, January's Open Mic was filled with great talent from across several counties

and genres . 

The house was full of anticipation for Conchur White's launch of his first solo album 'Swirling Violets'.

Hotly tipped for a big future in the music business by all the indi rock press, Conchur's request to launch in Abbey Lane OMN

  was due to the welcome and enthusiasm our audiences show. We wish recently married Conchur all the best in his marriage

and career. 

The Open Mic had poets, singers, storytellers and musicians filling the evening and starting with Mollie Maguire, poet; Tim Hanna, film review; Thomas Healy poetry and songs; Mark Brownlee, mental health odes from his recently launched debut book ' Manic'; Dennis McCloskey musician/ singer. After a short break for our famous raffle our Poetry competition winner was announced as Jay Rafferty with his entry 'The Blade' (Friendship topic) and highly commended Ellen McKenna with 'By the Sea' ( favorite walk). Both of these entries will be posted on our website.

Continuing the night Malachi read his now finished  poem 'I can't resist a sausage'; Frances Lavery and Fergal Donnelly duetted beautifully with 'So here's to you'; Ellen McKenna poetry; Jay Rafferty poetry; Theo Sinton  sang his own composition and

Willie Nelson's hits; Malachi read 'Invited for coffee' and Dymphna Ferran rounded of a super evening with jokes, yarns and her poem 

in memorance of her Mum.

Thanks goes to all the helpers on the night who set up , helped at raffle, lights, sound and clearing up after. etc. Best wishes to Rachel 

who is down with one of the many bugs..get well soon Rachel.

Our next  Open Mic is February 23rd....short month folks and hope to see you there.



ATG's next production, 'Toxic Relationships' by Byddi Lee, will read tomorrow night (23rdJan)in Abbey Lane Theatre at 

7.30pm. Under the directorship of Margery Quinn this production is to be performed in April and May @ Abbey Lane .

So if you are keen and able to commit to these dates a part may be there for you, drop in and see.


Our 2 T-Rex gives a godly preview of a scene from 'Toxic Relationships' recently in Dublin.

After a very successful run in 23' we are rolling out our FREE 30-3-30 poetry competition for this month's Open Mic on 26th January. 

Only change is from a restrictive 30 word limit we are allowing your creative jucies up to 30 line limit.  This could be 4 x7line stanza

or 6x5 line verses or whatever format you like  but not more than 30 lines (standard A4 ) 

So to remind our poets 30 lines - 3 topics - £30 to winning poem. 


This month's topics suggestions; 1) New Beginnings.   2) A favorite walk. 3) Friendship

Deadline for entries will be midnight 20th January. Entries by email to ; This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. as attachment.

Title your poem but do not sign your name on attachment.

Judges decision are final. Best wishes to all are entrants.



As we near the end of 2023 a look back  on a very busy year for Armagh Theatre Group and Armagh Youth Theatre Group.

Estimated visitors to ATG/AYTG events;   over 2650

Productions staged in Abbey Lane/ Market Place/ Dublin venues;


ATG's;  My Brilliant Divorce                      1 performance

ATG's 'Bleak Expections'                           4 performances

AYTG; 'Treading the Boards'                     2 performances 

            'Summer Scheme'                          1 performance

            ' Dec term end show                      1 performance 



          'Impact, Armagh's Train Disaster' 2 performances (MPT)

         'Toxic Relationships'                        3 performances (Dublin)  

Rehearsals for all above smashed 70 sessions in 4 venues 

Other activities at Abbey Lane and within group

Open Mic Nights for 2023'    Community event                   11

Poetry Work Shop for 'Creative Lives'   

Marian Rafferty climbs Mount Kilimanjaro

Group trip; Patrick Kavanagh Centre

New storage space erected after the 'Moving stones' ceremony

Mark Brownlee's 'Manic' book launch

Looking forward to 2024. Rehearsals underway for 'Mini Plays' in January. Open Mic returns. AYTG classes returns.Byddi Lee's 'Toxic Relationships' begin rehearsals in February for April performances in Abbey Lane and high hopes for commencing the long delayed extension plans in spring. With a possible trip to Dingle Co Kerry with Byddi's play we have lots to keep us busy in 24'

Big thank you to all who were involved in any way to help us achieve so much as an amature drama group. Without you it would not have happened. We hope you have a peaceful and joyful Christmastime and New Year.


















This week we broke new ground for the history books of Armagh Theatre Group by appearing in two venues on Wednesday and Thursday in Dublin City.

Firstly Byddi Lee's incisive new play on climate change 'Toxic Relationships' , which we have been rehearsing under the wonderful directorial eye of Margaret Marjoram,  was featured as an excerpt reading in Aviva Stadium  as part of the Sci-Com Communications Conference.

ATG were the only Drama group attending this vital climate focused event to show young scientists a novel , humorous way of educating audiences through drama. (Hand drawing by attendee while we performed was proof it worked)