Jim OSullivan.

Goodbye to all that. Seen leaving Waterford Crystal for the last time, having received their redundancy forms, were, left to right, Billy Collins, Richard Power, Maurice Whittle, Cllr John OLeary, Pat Greene and Noel Connors. Photo: Jim OSullivan.

A sad and gloomy event occurred at Kilbarry this morning when our photographer recorded for posterity the final death throes of a once glorious era in our city and county.

For so long the jewel in the crown of Ireland’s export business, Waterford Crystal employed almost 4000 workers at the height of its success and the skill and artistry of its craftsmen and craftswomen was admired and celebrated the world over. A total of 27 people are still employed in the gallery showroom but their future is uncertain.

The once bustling factory and office complexes are now silent with the departure of the last 120 workers left on site. Where once an electrifying cacophony of voices and machinery created a powerful buzz that was almost tangible, there is now nothing other than the moan of a lonely wind through deserted buildings.