Sarah Callaghan (top) is from Dublin and travelling around Iran for a month on her own.
I have travelled most of Asia alone but have never felt safer and more welcomed than here in Iran. It’s a beautiful country to visit with a unique and kind people.
First day in the capital and I discover Bobby Sands Street in Tehran. A short walk from the newly opened hostel and cultural centre run by Facebook group See You In Iran, it is located along the walls of the British Embassy.
After the Iranian revolution, they renamed all the streets wanting to use inspiring and revolutionary names. On the entrance to the British Embassy, the street previously called Winston Churchill St., was renamed by local students in solidarity with Irish hunger striker Bobby Sands in 1981 (the sign is spelt phonetically).
The British embassy were not too pleased and changed their door to another side to prevent it being their address! Nowadays there is but a chained-up back door (third pic above).
At the time of the name changes and the hunger strike, local students were planning on storming the embassy and putting up Irish flags but couldn’t find any to buy, so they hand-made some. Yet, the orange looked red and, therefore, like the Iranian flag. So, to prevent confusion, they simply wrote signs “Bobby Sands St” and put them up until the name caught on.
I have read there is ironically a Bobby Sands burger restaurant here but when I visited the street in Tehran there was nothing, it is a very quiet street. However, I have heard rumours it is in fact in Esfahan so I will keep an eye.
There is more information and a great story from one of the students who named the street here.
In other Irish/Iranian relations, every male I meet – once they hear Ireland, they shout “Robbie Keane” and proceed to talk about how Ireland kicked Iran out of the World Cup. They also have a soft spot for Roy.
A little bit of home is everywhere…
Previously: Meanwhile, On Bobby Sands Street