Civil War in Ireland – Barrys vs Lyons


Civil War in Ireland – Barrys vs Lyons

Additional Info:
Size: A3 (297mm x 420mm) & A4 (210mm x 297mm. All prints are digitally printed to 179gsm matte paper. The frame is shown for illustration purposes only.


Civil War in Ireland – Barrys vs Lyons

There is a civil war amongst the tea-drinkers of Ireland. The two camps have been divided for decades and the mere mention of preference is enough to curdle the atmosphere of even the most civilised tea party.

Barry’s Tea vs Lyon’s Tea at its very core is a Munster versus Leinster issue. Despite these provinces being able to set aside their respective differences in rugby, to represent Ireland, the tea question remains a contentious topic.

I myself am a victim of this conflict. Born in Cork, we were raised on Barry’s Tea. My parents shielded my siblings and I from any mention of the conflict. As I grew older I naturally had questions. One day my parents sat me down to give me “the talk”. “Look Ray, you are old enough to know the truth”, my father began. “There is another tea Ray – it’s called Lyons”, my mother blurted out. I was shocked. I immediately began to question EVERYTHING in my mind. Had I been living a lie for my then eight years of life?

My mother and father were quite liberal people and explained to me that Lyon’s Tea drinkers were no better or worse people, but strongly advised me to keep my tea preferences to myself as everyone had the right to choose what tea they drank.

Fast forward to 2011, I met Lisa – my partner and mother of my child. My mother had passed away before I had met Lisa and my family were delighted that I found someone who made me happy. However, they weren’t aware that Lisa was a Lyon’s Tea drinker.

Lisa and I were two star crossed lovers from different sides of the conflict. Such was our devotion to each other, we both decided to make the ultimate sacrifice to maintain our burgoening union. We each took an oath to drink Barry’s in Cork with my family and Lyons in Meath with hers. This wouldn’t be easy.

I still remember the day I took my first sip of Lyons Tea. I felt that I was betraying my heritage and doubted whether I could live this lie, but we both endured for the sake of our relationship. After months of living double lives – the truth finally came out. In a moment of madness Lisa had asked where the Lyons tea bags were to my father. The veil had slipped and we had been outed.

After the initial shock of having a mixed tea relationship in both families, over time we settled our differences. In 2016 our daughter Nia was the first child I know of to be born into a Barry and Lyons family.

If we can peacefully co-exist, then Barry’s and Lyon’s need to put down the swords, have a cuppa and talk things out. ☕️




A3 (297mm x 420mm), A4 (210mm x 297mm)



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