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Saturday 14th August 2004

Community Games
Congratulations to Eric O’Donnell and his five competitors from the Fethard Judo Club who were representing Munster and took Mosney by storm winning five gold medals in the judo event on the first weekend of the ESB National Finals of the Community Games.

This was a fantastic achievement and each of the competitors gave a tremendous display of judo.  The winners were:  Padraig O’Shea, Lorraine Feery and Richard Gorey from Fethard/Killusty area.  Niall O’Donnell, Cahir, and Stephanie Lawrence, Coleman, who now lives in the parish of Clerihan.  Team manager was Alice Feery and National Recorder was Helena O’Shea.  It was interesting to note that every year since they commenced competing at National Finals in 1985 members of Fethard Judo Club never came home empty handed and that last time that they won 5 gold medals was in 1992. The winning lads that year were, present coach Eric O’Donnell, his two brothers, Stephen and Kenneth, Roy Gorey and Alan Roche.  Michael Costello (Strylea) and Kevin O’Donnell both won silver medals the same year.

Good luck to Denis Burke and the boys under/15 Volleyball team and to Michael Costello, Woodvale Walk, who are competing next weekend.

A Golf Classic in aid of Fethard & District Day Care Centre will take place at Slievenamon Golf Club this Saturday 23rd August. Further details from the Community Office Tel: 052 31000. For time sheets please ring Brendan Kenny, Slievenamon Golf Club. Tel: 052 32213.

Fethard Historical Society have organised a guided bus tour of the Glen of Aherlow on Saturday 30th August.  The fee is €10 and the bus will depart from the Town Hall Fethard at 6pm.  Following the tour, the group will return to Aherlow House Hotel where refreshments will be available on request.  The bus will return to Fethard at midnight.  All are welcome to come along.  Contact Chris Nevin at Tel: (052) 32389 for bookings and further details.

Due to renovations at Fethard Health Centre on Rocklow Road, the Community Welfare Officer will now be available at the Tirry Community Centre, Barrack Street, from August 11th, to 8th September. Telephone 052 31000.

Public Health Nurse, Ms Nora Lawrence, will also be available at the Tirry Community Centre, Barrack Street, from August 11th, to 8th September, from 9.30am to 10.30am. Telephone 052 31000.

The numbers drawn in the Fethard and Killusty Community Lotto on Tuesday 12th August were: 2, 19, 27 and 28. There was no Jackpot Winner and one 'Match 3' winner who received €150:

Paddy Lawrence, 14 Fr. Tirry Park, Fethard.

The three ‘Lucky Dip’ winners of €50 were:

Yvonne Tyler, c/o Group Homes, Fethard.

Samantha Ryan, c/o Group Homes, Fethard.

Nellie Ryan, 46 St. Patricks Place, Fethard.

The Jackpot remains at €10,000 and next weeks Jackpot sellers prize is €1,000.No's drawn 2, 19, 27, 28.

The Senior Football South Championship semifinal is due to be played on Saturday 23rd August at 7pm in Kilsheelan against our old rivals, Moyle Rovers.

Our only game on the field of play this week is due to be played on Wednesday 20th in Junior Football ‘B’ against Clonmel Og.

In Juvenile under/16 ‘B’ Hurling we play Mullinahone on 25th August in Fethard.

At a meeting of the club, a decision was taken to honour the Senior Football Champions of 1978 (25 years ago) after a lapse of 21 years without success, before the end of 2003. As the club had previously honoured all Senior County Champions up to 1978 over the last number of years,

We had no Lotto Jackpot winner on 12th August.  The draw was made in McCarthys with the Jackpot now €1,500.  Three ‘match three’ winners received €50 each: Jimmy O’Meara  (Cedar Grove), Pat Houlihan (c/o Bob Fitzgeralds, Clonmel), and Bernie Byrne (Claremore). The €50 Lucky Dip winner was Louis Coen (Killusty).

Tennis Camp
A children’s tennis camp will be held each morning on the tennis courts in Fethard, starting on Monday 25th August to Friday 29th August.  Coach is Tony McCarthy. This is open to all children of 10 years and over.  Names, on a first come basis, can be given to Jimmy and Fionnuala O’Sullivan, Main Street.  A special invitation to any parent that might be free to come along and help at the children’s camp.  This help would be very much appreciated.

The tennis courts are an underutilised facility in Fethard so we would encourage any person who has played before or would like to start playing, to go up to the courts any evening to play.  If there is enough interest lessons can be organised.  It is proposed to hold an adults league for all levels in September, including beginners. Names can be given to the O’Sullivans.

We are very pleased to see the O’Sullivans doing their best to spearhead a tennis revival in Fethard.  Jimmy’s grandfather, the late James O’Sullivan M.P.S.I. established the first tennis club in Fethard in the early 1930s.

Rural tennis clubs, such as Ballypatrick, Kilsheelan, Lattin and Kilfeacle etc, continue to prosper, along with the other long established urban clubs — Hillview, Castleview, Rosanna, Larkspur are some that come to mind.  However, the fortunes of tennis in Fethard have declined more than somewhat in recent years.  Here’s hoping that the revival will lead to restoring Fethard tennis to its glory years of the fifties when Fethard Tennis Club produced teams to match any in Munster.

The Community Games National Judo Finals were held in Mosney last weekend.  Heading up on Friday morning, hopes were high for a great weekend of fun and medal winning.  We had five members heading up on Friday and five coming home on Sunday with five gold medals.

First to win was Padraig O’Shea in under 30kg, followed by Niall O’Donnell in under 35kg with a brilliant display of judo skill to claim gold.  Next up was Richard Gorey in the open event, winning another gold medal. 

It was our ladies turn next. Lorraine Feery was first on the mat showing great fighting spirit and winning our fourth gold medal.  Last but not least was Stephanie Lawrence to win our final gold medal of the weekend.  These five competitors were Tipperary’s only medal winners on the first weekend of the games.  This was a great achievement for the Fethard club and first-time county judo manager Alice Feery, and also a great end to the judo season.

Watch out Mosney, we’re back next year, bigger and better!

The wedding took place at Fethard Parish Church on Saturday 16th August of Ms Cora Breen, Barrack Street, to Mr William McGarry, Woodvale Walk.

Looking at the Tipp-Kilkenny hurling semifinal on the box on Sunday last, and not for the first time, we are wondering does one have to have a bus pass to qualify for umpiring at top GAA games at Croke Park.  No disrespect meant to the venerable bespectacled portly gentlemen who did an excellent job on Sunday.  While it would have made no difference to the result if they took the ‘Metal Man’ down from his pillar in Tramore and gave him a flag, in the modern GAA the ‘Dads Army’ umpires just do not look the part.  The GAA have learnt from the Australian Rules the system of having a good supply of footballs and sliothars at each goal to speed up kick-outs and puck-outs.  Why not take example from the Aussie Rules umpires?  These are fit, slim, young men who, when a score is made, quickly and decisively move to the centre of the goal and clearly signal a behind, goal, over, or whatever.  Also noticed that referees are now enforcing the puck-out from the small square rule, which the new aerodynamic sliotar makes necessary.  If this rule, which was always there, was not enforced, goalkeepers like Brendan Cummins and Davy Fitzgerald would soon, with a favourable wind, be scoring points from the puck-out.

It’s amazing how many long-time GAA followers never knew of the existence of this rule which was seldom if ever enforced, and even fewer knew the penalty for its breach.  We recall one occasion in Kilsheelan some years ago, in a Coolmoyne v Marlfield game when referee Tommy Foran of Carrick enforced the rule.  Marlfield scored a goal from the seventy awarded from the foul and won the game by a point.

We noticed some long time Fethard emigrants home on holiday recently.  Jim Heffernan, Capt (Ret) Canadian Army, and formerly from the Green, accompanied by his four six-feet-plus sons were visiting Jim’s native town last week.  A member of one of Fethard’s oldest families, Jim left Fethard in 1949.  His family were trades people and operated a sawmill powered by the Clashawley on the Valley for generations.  The County Council now use the building as a store.  Jim also took a trip to England to visit his surviving brother Michael and sister Margaret, who are both unfortunately, not so good, health wise.

Another visitor noticed in Fethard was the former Mary McGrath, Burke Street.  Mary is now 54 years in London.  Her visit this time was a rather nostalgic one as she erected a headstone over her mother’s grave in Redcity.  Mary tells us that her mother died when she was just 15 months old.

Pride of place to our long-time emigrants goes however to Mrs Mary Querns, London, formerly Mary Watts of The Green.  Mary, a sprightly octogenarian, left Fethard when 14 years old.  Now sixty-nine years in London, she has no living relatives now resident in Fethard.  She never forgot her Fethard roots and still regularly holidays here with her friend Nellie (Heffernan) Shine, Barrack Street.


This site is maintained by Joe Kenny, Rocklow Road, Fethard, Co. Tipperary, Ireland.