Saturday 4th June 2005

Drugs find in Fethard
Local Gardai assisted by District Drugs Squad seized a quantity of drugs in a house in Fethard last week.  The raid was part of a planned operation, which involved three premises being searched.  A file is now being prepared for the Director of Public Prosecutions and charges are expected at a later date.  We congratulate the Garda on their ongoing efforts to curtail this ongoing problem of drugs, which is infiltrating our local communities and affecting both young and old.

Now that summer school holidays are approaching again, we remind parents to be ever vigilant as to the whereabouts of their young children and to report any suspicious activity, drugs related or not, to the local Gardai.  With your help we can put a stop to this problem before it gets out of hand.

Fethard ICA Guild
Fethard ICA held their annual general meeting on Tuesday May 10th in the ICA Hall on Rocklow Road and had a great turn out of members.  The elected officers remain the same as last year: Nuala Delaney (President), Sheila O’Donnell (Vice-President), Anne Horan (Treasurer) and Anne Gleeson (Secretary).  Information Officer, Nan Hackett, was in attendance on the night and for our social half-hour, we had a musical table quiz which was enjoyed by all.

Our summer outing takes place on Thursday 16th June, when we visit the National Stud, Japanese Gardens and St. Fiachraí’s Garden. We then go on to the Butterfly Farm in Straffan with an optional stop in Naas / Newbridge.  Bus will leave outside the Town Hall, Fethard, at 9.30am.  Our evening meal is organised for Hotel Montague.

Our next guild meeting will take place on Tuesday 14th June at 8pm in the ICA Hall. Our guest speaker will be Marie Mockler who will talk to us on ‘A stroll around a Cottage Garden’.  Hostesses are the ‘Blue Group’ and the competition theme is ‘Selection from Hedge Rows’.

Died Recently
We record the death of Maureen Holohan, Burke Street, who died, in her 96th year, on Monday 6th June at St. Joseph's Hospital, Clonmel. Maureen was the very popular proprietor of Holohan's Bar in Burke Street. Interment took place in Calvary Cemetery.

Raiders Rob local Pharmacy
In the early hours of Thursday morning, 2nd June, a gang of at least four raiders broke in to O'Sullivan's Chemist on Main Street by the front door. They managed to get away with a safe, which was later discovered in the locality. The thieves were disturbed by alert neighbours and no one was injured in the raid.

Fethard Juvenile GAA Club
The under/12 A Football South Final was played in Monroe on Tuesday 31st May and a great crowd attended.  We were unfortunate to lose again to Commercials on a scoreline of 3-07 to 1-06.  Playing against the wind in the first half we got a very bad start going 1-02 down in the first five minutes. We then settled and played some of the finest football one could see with Brian Delahunty, Frank O’Donovan, Ciarán O’Meara and Eoin Fitzgerald dominating the field.  We got back into the game with points from Tommy Sheehan, Eoin Fitzgerald and a brilliant goal from Alan Lawrence.  We were right back in the game at that stage but, just at half time and against the run of play, Commercials scored another goal to leave us 5 points down at the break, 2-05 to 1-03.

With wind advantage in the second half, Commercials started better and scored first to stretch their lead to 6 points.  Fethard dominated for the next fifteen minutes scoring 3 points, hit the post and had a ball cleared off the line.  Time was running out and commercials surged up the field and score a goal to kill off any hopes of a Fethard win.

When the final whistle blew, Fethard had yet again suffered a defeat at the hands of their nearest rivals, Commercials.  Fethard had many heroes on the night in our goalie, Gareth Lawrence, backs, Eoin Walsh, Ger Maher, Ciarán O’Meara, Ronan Fitzgerald. Frankie O’Donovan, Brian Delahunty, Jack Devaney, midfield, Eoin Fitzgerald, Eoin Dillon, forwards, Dylan Fitzgerald, Aaron Conran, Tommy Sheehan (capt), Cáthal Hurley, Alan Lawrence, Philip Maher, Michael Smith, Joe Morgan, Willie Morgan, and Andrew Maher.  Thanks to Stephen O’Donnell, Paul Fitzgerald, Paul Dillon and Willie Lawrence, for their time and effort and hopefully it will be only a matter of time before this team will take home the honours.  Our concentration must now go to the hurling.

Well done to Commercials we wish them the best of luck in the County we will be cheering them all the way to success. 

Our under/6s, 8s, and 10s played commercials on Friday last in Marlfield.  We travelled with 45 players and had a great evenings entertainment.  This was the first time we fielded an under/6 team and it was great to see the stars of the future (many children of stars of the past) playing their first game for Fethard.  We hope to have another outing in two weeks time.

There is an under/10 championship starting on the 18th June in football and hurling which will run consecutively for ten weeks, which is great to see.  It is important that all players report for training.  The under/10 managers are Willie Lawrence and Frank O’Donovan for football, and John Hurley and P.J. Ahearn for hurling. 

The under/14 footballers played their last game on last bank holiday Monday and were unfortunate not to qualify for the semi-final.  In fairness, size seemed to have been our biggest obstacle, as they played some brilliant football.  Thanks to Willie Morrissey, Buddy Fitzgerald and Willie Quigley and to all the players for their effort throughout the year. 

The under/16 hurlers played a challenge game against Killenaule and gave a very good account of themselves as they prepare for the championship.  We hope this team will be in the knock stages later this year so keep up the good work. 

There will be an under/12 hurling challenge against Moyle Rovers next Friday night in Monroe.  All players are requested to be at the field at 6-15pm.  The very best of luck to the school’s under/11 team who are playing in the school final in Semple Stadium in hurling this Thursday.

Anyone looking for more information can contact club secretary Caroline on Tel: 086 1713502.

The Well Golf Society
The Well Golf Society results from last Saturday's outing to Rathdowney are as follows: Nearest the pin: Brian Mullins, Aiden Grant.
Ladies: 1st: Mary Kenrick, 2nd: Mary Stakelum.
Gents (18-24): 1st: Vincent Phelan, 2nd: Pat Woodlock.
Gents (1-17): 1st: Brian Mullins. 2nd: Joe Corbett. 3rd: Billy Phelan.
Our next outing takes place on Saturday 25th June to Abbeyleix Golf Club.  This is another new venue for the society and according to those who have played it, it's one not to be missed.

Multi Agency Meeting
A multi-agency meeting, organised by Margo Hayes, RAPID Coordinator, will take place in the Tirry Community Centre, Fethard at 11.30am on Thursday, June 16th, to examine a number of issues apparent in the Fethard town and Environs including youth issues and the lack of a youth service/workers. The meeting will be attended by members of Fethard and Killusty Community Council and invited representatives of involved Public Bodies, organisations and local groups.

RAPID stands for Revitalising Areas Through Planning Investment and Development. This government programme is funded through the Department of Community Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs. RAPID aims to improve the quality of life and make opportunities available in 45 of Ireland’s most under resourced Towns and Cities.

St. Patrick’s Boys’ School reach final
Congratulations to St Patricks Boys School on reaching the Under-11 C hurling final which will be played in Semple Stadium on Thursday 9th June. The boys had three very close matches against Ballyporeen, Grange and Boherlahan. They fought hard and fully deserve to reach the final against Upperchurch.
Team members are: John Gartland (captain), Cathal Hurley, Garreth Lawrence, Ger Maher, Ronan Fitzgerald, Brian Delahunty, Dylan Fitzgerald, Ciaran O’Meara, David Gartland, Eoin Walsh, Andrew Maher, Vincent Lawrence and Gerard Gorey.

Sayers Family History
We are researching our family history, and have recently visited Fethard and Clonmel. My husband has cousins and an aunt Maggie living in Fethard who have helped us. We are looking for a connection between my husband’s great-grandfather John Sayers, and Henry Baker Sayers. We know from the census that Henry was born in Dunvegan, and his fathers name was Matthew, from marriage details. John  died 1908 aged 69, 1901 census says he was born in Tipperary. Johns wife was Honora Ahearn. She was Catholic and he was Protestant, and family legend says he converted to Catholicism, and was disowned by his family.
Johns grandson Harry used to tend the grave of Henry Baker Sayers, that is why we think there is a connection.  We have established that John was a tailor, and Henry Baker Sayers had several business enterprises in the town, and Henry Baker Sayers father Matthew was described as a merchant. We have obtained details of Sayers Protestant births deaths and marriages in Fethard, and are compiling trees. Unfortunately John Sayers was not baptised there.
Would appreciate any information on Sayers family pre 1900. Other family names are Thomas, Catherine. Many thanks. Judith Sayers, Gloucestershire, England. (email: judandrunners@hotmail.com)

Fethard & Killusty Community Lotto
The numbers drawn on Tuesday 31st May were: 5, 12, 17 and 20. There was no Jackpot winner and three ‘Match 3’ winners. The following won €50 each:

Tom Kearney, Killusty, Fethard

Margaret Dunne, c/o Seamus Moloney

P.J. Lonergan, The Square, Fethard

The three €50 Lucky Dip winners were:

Ian O'Connor, 44 St. Patricks Place, Fethard

Nicky O'Shea, Tullow, Fethard

Bernard O'Donnell, 24 Woodvale Walk, Fethard

Next weeks Jackpot remains at €10,000 and the Jackpot sellers prize is €1,000.

Colm’s Country
Fethard is one of the ‘stopping off’ points on a new tour, which takes tourists off the beaten track. The man behind the venture is local entrepreneur, Colm McGrath.  The tours begin in Kilkenny and visit Kells, Kilree, Sliabh na mBan, Fethard, Cashel and Ballingarry, taking in monastic remains, castles, Celtic crosses, Sheela na gigs, amongst many other sights. Colm will be familiar to many as the man behind the medieval re enactment group which recently started up in Fethard.

Best of luck to him in his new venture. More information can be had from his website www.colmscountry.com or by contacting him on his mobile Tel: 086 3502360.

(N Gawe)

Killusty Pony Show
With a month to go until the forty-second Killusty Pony Show on the 2nd July, plans are well in train to repeat the success of last year’s Show. At a recent meeting of the Show Committee, attendees heard that the Schedules were printed and ready to be posted, judges were booked for all six rings and essential services were almost all in place.

As with so many long-lived organisations, Killusty Pony Show is finding a dropping off among long-term supporters, partly age related. The next generation for whom Killusty was provided in their youth are not coming forward to shoulder the burden of organising the Annual Event. Killusty went from a one ring affair at its inception catering for mainly local ponies to what it is now-seventy classes, six rings with entries from all over Ireland. Killusty was the first all pony show in the calendar predating the Irish Pony Society and it is a mark of the esteem in which it is held that it is one of only three ‘double points’ Shows on the IPS calendar. If any of that next generation are just ‘waiting to be asked’ they would be more than welcome at the next Killusty Meeting in the Tirry Centre Fethard on 17th June at 8:30pm.
The schedule for this year’s Show contains classes for almost all variety of pony and rider. The in-hand ring for young stock, broodmares and purebred Welsh and Connemara Classes also has a class for coloured ponies. The Show Pony ring also includes Side-saddle classes along with the height classes. When these classes are finished, equitation classes follow where the rider is judged and not the pony. The young entry of the pony world are comprehensively catered for in their own ring with lead-rein, first-ridden and mini-equitation classes being judged as well as the local handy pony class and the special lead-rein class for children under 10 on ponies of any height. The Show Hunter ring has Novice and Open classes for ponies of all heights from 133cms. To 158cms. The Working Hunter ring caters for these same ponies over fences. A further ring for Performance Working hunters includes a class for ‘Green Working Hunter’ the fences are 2’ and any pony or rider may take part in this class but if they do they may not take part in any other working hunter class with the same pony on the day of the Show. After these classes are completed, Equitation Jumping Classes follow where the rider is judged and not the pony.
A Fancy Dress competition and a Dog Show complete the day. Such is the popularity of these competitions that it is hoped to have a separate ring available so that they may start as soon after lunch as it is possible. The setting at Claremore, Killusty could not be better as it looks out on Slievenamon in all its glory. All are welcome to attend and experience the unspoilt atmosphere of one of the premier shows in Ireland. Schedules are available from Betsy O’Connor, Knockelly, Fethard. Entries close finally on June 25th for most classes. The Performance Working Hunter Classes and Equitation classes can be entered on the field on the day, as can the Dog Show classes.

Two Fethards
As far as most of us know, there are only two Fethards in the world. One is in Tipperary and the other is in Wexford.  The name doesn’t seem to have been transported to any other part of the globe by proud emigrants. One family did depart the town over two centuries ago, selling their land and buying a large tract of land in Tasmania, which they called Tipperary. A descendant of that family, the Haythorne Twaites, was interred a number of years ago in the family grave beside the Holy Trinity church. This was prior to the restoration of the grounds, so the grave was found with the aid of two slashers.

The subject of death brings me back to the two Fethards. Arrangements were made for a funeral to go to Glasnevin crematorium a number of years ago and as the local priest was unable to travel to the crematorium, a list of Glasnevin priests was given to the undertaker. One was contacted who agreed to perform the service. On hearing that the congregation was travelling from Fethard, he said that he knew the area well and would write out a short sermon for the service. This he did, and all ears in the chapel listened intently as the priest told of many summers spent as a boy with his family on holiday in Fethard. He hadn’t been there for many years, but the memories of the area and the surrounding countryside had never left him. He recalled days spent fishing off the Hook . . . and the assembled congregation all looked up in unison and surprise. He was talking about the wrong Fethard.  And he kept talking . . . and talking.

Everyone agreed that the sermon was indeed a very good one. So nobody bothered to tell the priest of the mistake. And he went smiling on his way, with pleasant memories of Wexford, after a job well done.

(N Gawe)


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