Secret Easter Rising police files released

Secret police files that detailed surveillance on the leaders of the Easter Rising have been digitised and made public for the first time.

Compiled by the Dublin Metropolitan Police, the daily files show how officers monitored the movements of over 230 men including Sean Mac Diarmada Thomas Clarke, Thomas MacDonagh and Eoin MacNeill.

Previously held in the National Archives, before now the files have been available only to specialist scholars.

Amongst the notes are detailed movements of the men including an entry for June 1, 1915 when Eoin MacNeill, the founder of the Irish Volunteers, was seen visiting Tom Clarke, one of the seven signatories of the Proclamation, at his shop on Parnell Street. 

Despite the extensive surveillance, at the time the Rising was regarded as a massive failure of intelligence.

Release of the files is just of a range of initiatives being spearheaded as part of the Ireland 2016 plans - the Irish government's commemorative programme to mark the Easter Rising. 

The files will be released in chronological order to correspond with what happened each day 100 years ago. 

Click here to access the National Archives.