Saturday 2nd February 2008

Fethard Community Childcare (ACORN) Project
As working parents are aware the need for affordable childcare nowadays is essential. Existing childcare locally is under considerable pressure. The children are well looked after by dedicated and caring people but what is lacking is safe adequate space and facilities. Fethard & Killusty Community Council therefore has formed a committee to provide a solution to this problem.

The ACORN project aims to identify the local need, to identify a suitable site, and to develop a suitable facility. We are currently working with the National Childcare Committee, who has overseen such developments in Cahir, Ardfinnan and Clonmel. Initially what is needed from the people in our area is information regarding our needs. To this end a questionnaire was developed by Ciaran Lynch and Catherine Corcoran of the Tipperary Institute and has been circulated locally. If a family has not received one, they will be available at Newport’s Newsagents. If parents could take a few minutes to fill in this form and return it quickly it will be a great help. The information collected will be assessed and used to form a report to the National Childcare Committee.

So far, we have looked at a number of the newer facilities, and the development in Cahir is an especially exciting one. All who were at the site visit were impressed by what has been achieved by them. We meet regularly to review progress and our meetings are open. Next meeting will take place on Wednesday 6th February at 7.30pm in the Tirry Community Centre. So, as parents if there is someway you can help, please come along.

Site for Community Facilities
Subsequent to the establishment of the Fethard Childcare Committee (ACORN), and their wish to secure a suitable site as soon as possible, Fethard & Killusty Community Council will convene a meeting with interested groups to progress with a joint community effort to acquire the identified site, in the Rocklow Road/Strylea area, and to involve others in the process. This meeting will take place on, Wednesday, 6th February, at 8.30pm in the Tirry Community Centre. All interested parties and sporting organisations are invited to attend.

Hunting News
The Tipperary Foxhounds met at Knockfee on Monday 21st January, scenting conditions were not the best. Finding in the gorse covert at the Watertower they hunted down to the old sandpit. Hunting through the gorse here they eventually market to ground. Moving on towards Morrestown a fox found by the Traas Apple Farm quickly got to ground. From the bend by Moorestown Castle little could be done with a fox found here. One from the Fort nearby was quickly lost. The day ended on a high note. Finding in the gorse under the Poulmucka Knockfee Road hounds raced across the road near the old Ballingeary School. Through Mr Hyland’s they ran towards the old ball-alley. Turning left short of here they ran back over the road at Knockfee cross. Looking as if they were heading to Moorestown Castle they swung left handed and marked to ground just short of where they found. This was a real flier of about twenty-five minutes during which the field found it difficult to keep in contact.

The Tipps did not hunt on Wednesday. From Ballinahinch on Thursday they had another good run. Finding in the bog at Con Ryan’s they ran right over to O’Dwyer’s of Tamberlane. Swinging left here they hunted through Charlie Horgan’s to Jessica Roth’s quite close to the big wood at Knockavilla.  This run, without a check, provided plenty of jumping over the big banks and also plenty of fallers.

With the White Heathers
The White Heather Harriers had anything but a good beginning to their day at Clonacody on Sunday last. Foxes were very hard to find and scent in the bright sunshine and Spring like conditions was almost non existent. Finding in the late Jimmy Ryan’s at Ballinhameen, hounds eventually got a fox to leave, running to the nearby smaller plantation he got to ground in a rabbit hole. Bolting from the strong mark hounds caught him on top after a short run. The afternoon had moved on by the time hounds drew Jack Mockler’s at 3 o’clock. With the sinking sun, scenting conditions improved considerably.  Finding here hounds hunted up across the Jossestown Road to Killerk. Across towards Lakefield they looked like crossing the Clonmel Fethard Road, turning right-handed short of the road they hunted back through Clonacody down to the golf links. From here their fox ran to Jos Mockler’s, Ballinlough. Back up to where he was found he ran to the golf links and repeated the same circuit once again back to Ballinlough bogs where they had to give him best at 4.30pm, as much through exhaustion as anything else. This was an excellent run, perhaps rather slow but featured some very good hound work as scenting conditions were still far from good.

Winners in the January Draw were: 1st prize of €200 to Amy O’Connor, Drangan and 2nd prize of €100 to Ger Manton, Fethard.  The Ballyluskey White Heather Harriers meet next Sunday, 3rd February at Downey’s Cross (Fethard/Cloneen Road) at 11am. 

Fethard Community Youth Project
Since the departure, from Fethard, of youth worker Suzie O’Shea last Summer we would like to inform all that the Fethard Community Youth Project has not been forgotten about!  In the intervening months a lot of background work has been carried out by the Community Council, Foróige, South Tipperary VEC, the County Council and others in a collaborative effort to make an application for funding for a full-time, permanent, special youth project for Fethard. We are pleased to announce that a funding application has been lodged with the Department of Education prior to the closing date of Thursday, 31st January. This is not our first application for such funding and we hope that this year the application will be successful in securing the appointment of a much needed, dedicated youth project for Fethard.

Allied to the desire to have the Youth Project reinstated in Fethard, Foróige, the National Youth Development Organisation, would like to re-establish a Foróige Club in the town.  A Foróige Club is for young people between the ages of twelve and eighteen years.  The young people are responsible, in co-operation with adult leaders, for making all the decisions regarding the club.  To make it possible to re-establish a Foróige Club in Fethard it is necessary that adult volunteers become involved as leaders.  If you would like to become an adult leader or be involved in any way please contact Foróige Regional Youth Officer, Gail O’Sullivan, Foróige Office, Military Road, Waterford.  Gail can also be contacted, by phone, at 051 872982 or 086 2316302 or, by e-mail, at gail.osullivan@foroige.ie

Died Recently
The death has occurred on 21st January of Mr Paddy Fox, Woodvale Walk. Interment took place in Calvary Cemetery.

The death has occurred on 26th January of Mr John Fleming, Coolmore. Interment took place in Calvary Cemetery.

The death has occurred on 27th January of Mrs Kitty Martin, Mobarnane, Fethard. Interment took place in Moyglass Cemetery.

Fethard Athletic Club
Fethard AC activities were very slow to start this year due to many and varied problems. Over the last seven weeks a junior squad (under-19) have been under lights in the GAA Park three nights a week, with the intention of competing in the County Junior Cross Country, which would take place in late January.

Numbers varied from ten to two athletes at different training sessions but the objective of winning the County Junior always was the motivation.

As luck would have it, the Munster Junior was held at the Tipperary venue in the Turnpike, out on the Dublin road just beyond Littleton on last Sunday week. We had a team entered with three of our boys also on the Tipperary team. Unfortunately we failed to fill a club team and lost out in silver Munster second team medals, but the trio of Robert and Jerome Ahearne and Jonathan Fleming, helped Tipperary to take second silver county medals.

Last Sunday saw the squad take the road west to Hollyford to run in the County Junior. Expectations were good, to say the least, of winning some sort of medals but on the day the boys took 1st team prize on a very dry tough course on the side of a hill. For the squad of Darragh Dwyer, Jerome Ahearne, Adam O’Donnell and Jonathan Fleming (Robert Ahearne had to withdraw due to an ankle injury), it was an experience never to be forgotten — it was a day when boys became men. Well done boys, ye did the town and club proud.

On the previous Saturday, Darragh Dwyer took silver in the 1500 meters at the indoors in Nenagh. These athletes will run in the inter schools cross country in Thurles on Tuesday next. Training continues on Tuesday nights at 7pm.

Fethard & District Juvenile Rugby
Our-under 7s played a fantastic game against Nenagh on Sunday showing the upper-hand throughout and scoring some wonderful tries.  Great tackling skills were performed by Gavin Ryan, Harry Cummins, Peter Wall, James Phillips, Connor Vaughan and Ciaran O’Dwyer. Lucy Spillane showed an impressive first start in her debut for Fethard.

The under-8s also acquitted themselves well considering they had not played a match since mid December owing to the weather. They proved too strong for Nenagh with great play coming from Jack Ward, Patrick Scully, Aaron Smullen, Harry Butler, Luke Bradstock, William Pratt, Darragh Harcourt, Darragh Lynch, Mark Heffernan, Jack Dolan, Jack and James O’Connell and Richard Holohan. With a bit of work to be done this is a great team for the months ahead.

Under-9s drew three all in a very good tough game with fabulous play from Michael Gaynor who is back from injury. Also playing well throughout was Killian O’Dwyer and Gary Kavanagh who showed good skill ably assisted by Matthew Lynch.  Jake Murphy made an impressive debut for the Fethard team.

Under-10s played two great games. With all thirteen playing extremely well after a long break and showing no signs of rustiness, they came together very well with great passing and tackling. The first full match result was 7-2, helped with great tackling by Padraig Norton. Harry Tobin played extremely well and nearly got the interception after great patience. Padraig Feehan with Paul Moloney got stuck in and Gearóid Fahy and Euan Harcourt played great. Tommy Murphy, Ben Murray, Christian Casey, Pierce Blackmore and Mark Collins used good teamwork together. Jason Ryan stole the ball alongside Luke Ryan to provide great rugby for the morning.

Under-12s played two games. The first game we played we won 7-3. It was a great performance by all the players as a team. Josh Murray, Russell Casey, Jimmy Feehan and Cathal Mahoney all scored with great skill and tackling. Playing well to the fore were Ciaran Mockler, Colin Kenny and Tommy Anglim. In the second game we lost 4 -2. It has to be said that Fethard showed a spirited performance against a very big side in a hard physical game in which Fethard played very well with a mixture of under-11s and under-12s and their coach pointed out how proud he was of their efforts and determination.

We are very lucky to have great support from Parents and would like to take this opportunity to say a huge thank you to all the parents for their time and effort.  It is wonderful to see so many parents travel to Nenagh to see the all the teams play great games.

Our under 16s travelled to Clonmel in the first round of the East Munster Cup. Despite loosing by 13 points to 6, Fethard showed great tenacity and played great rugby throughout playing most of the game in the Clonmel half. The Clonmel defence were outstanding on the day and Fethard just could not get that vital touchdown, being within six inches of the line on at least four occasions.

Poor tackling by Fethard gifted two breakaway tries to Clonmel in the first half. Daniel Hickey kicked two penalties for Fethard to leave the score 10 points to six at the break. Fethard started the second half in determined mood and launched attack after attack on the Clonmel line but were denied time and again. This was a very good team performance and Fethard can look forward to the home trip of Clonmel with some confidence. The Fethard forwards played exceptionally well against a far bigger pack, with Robert Hall bossing the line antes. James Kavanagh just back from injury was determined throughout particularly rucking and mauling. Kevin Hayes produced one of his best games to date, carrying some great ball and pulled off a try saving ankle tap in the second half. Connor Kavanagh had an assured game at scrum half. In reality everyone of the Fethard team deserve a mention as they played with such intensity and if they consistently play to this level they can have a very good cup run.

A few notes for your diary – Associate Referees IRFU Course will take place on 13th February at Limerick Institute of Technology for any coaches or parents. There is also the IRFU Mini’s Coaching Course. Any parents interested in attending this course can go along to the University of Limerick on the weekend of 16th & 17th February.

We will be holding a Table Quiz at Burke’s Bridge Bar on Thursday 28th February.  There will also be a first Aid Course on the weekend of 8th & 9th March. Anyone interested in any of the above or any player not receiving the weekly texts, please contact Polly on the rugby mobile on 087 7447691.

Local coursing trainer prepares for ‘Coursing Week’
Well done to local trainers David and Margaret Flanagan who have two dogs participating in this year’s Open Coursing Week in Clonmel, which takes place each year on the first week in February. ‘Carroll’s Cert’ owned by Roseanne Carroll, Lonergan’s Bar, qualified for The Oaks and ‘Beauty’s Outlaw’ owned by Birdy Barrett, won the Reserve Trial Stake in Freshford and will also be making an appearance during the week. Best of luck to both dogs.

Fethard GAA Club News
Urgent Reminder — The adjourned AGM takes place this Saturday 2nd February in the Abymill at 8pm (sharp). All members and players please take notice as championships for the year are now in place with the county leagues starting shortly.

Congratulations to our fellow Gaels, Moyle Rovers, in the All Ireland Junior Hurling ‘A’ Final and to Ballingarry Junior B in the Munster Final. We wish both the very best of luck in their respective finals.

We wish Denis O’Meara, our Field Development Officer, a speedy recovery after his recent accident

Our lotto jackpot €8,400 was not won. The numbers drawn were: 11, 22, 23 and 28. We had one ‘Match Three’ winner of €150 to Cathy O’Keeffe (39 Carrigeen, Clonmel). The €50 Lucky Dip winner was Nicky O’Shea (Tullow, Fethard). The tickets were kindly supplied by Fethard Credit Union.


Fethard Bridge Club Results
The results of our game on Wednesday 23rd January were:

1st Gross: Bernie O’Meara and Anna Cooke;
2nd Gross: Rita Kane and Kay St. John;

1st Nett: Kathleen Kenny and Breda O’Grady;
2nd Nett: Berney Myles and Alice Quinn.

On Wednesday 6th February we play the first round of the Club Championship. Anyone looking for a partner please contact Berney Myles at 32038.

Fethard Juvenile GAA Club
Fethard Juvenile GAA Club held their AGM on Thursday evening of last week in the Tirry Centre and would like to thank those parents who attended the meeting.

The following officers were elected: Chairman - Stephen Fitzgerald, Secretary - Caroline Sheehan, Treasurer - Anne Fleming. The outgoing chairman, John Hurley, wished the incoming chairman the best of luck and success for the coming year.

Two important dates to pencil in your diaries: a ‘Race Night’ will be held on Saturday 8th March in McCarthys Hotel, and a very important ‘Drug Awareness Evening’ is being arranged. Further details will follow.

Fethard Ladies Football Club
The Annual General Meeting of Fethard Ladies Football Club will take place in the Tirry Community Centre on this coming Friday night, 1st February at 8pm. Chairman, Joe Keane, wishes to stress the importance of parents attending this meeting as the future of the club will depend on the turnout and commitment to this meeting. Joe would also like to thank all those who helped him during 2007.

A Brief Update from Kenya And Eldoret (Saturday afternoon, 26th January 2008)
To all my friends and family . . . Eldoret is quiet now since the mediation team headed by Kofi Annan swung into action. He managed to get over the first hurdle in getting the two main people to meet and talk. The hardest part is yet to come and that is to persuade one side or the other or both to back down from their 'hardline' stance.

We had seen some light at the end of the tunnel but that may prove to be only an express train approaching . . . I hope not!

Kenya's fourth largest town, Nakuru, in the centre of the country and 157 kms from Eldoret is under army curfew, a dusk to dawn situation. It is the first time that the military has been called out during this troubling time. Some years ago they were called out to the same area. Some media houses (e.g. the BBC World Service, Jan 26th am) may be reporting that the Rift Valley is under military curfew . . . that is not true. In actual fact, many parts of the Rift Valley, which is huge in area, are peaceful and stable.

Here in Eldoret there are sporadic isolated attacks and cases of arson still taking place and some of these have been happening in and around Kabongo where we have our Primary School and Dispensary. There are still many thousands of Refugees in the Eldoret Showgrounds and the vast majority of these have no homes to return to.

As for ourselves here in Eldoret (the suburbs, really) we are not personally or physically affected in any way. We are trying to carry on with or work as best we can. As I have said in previous updates, the main affect we suffer is to see the general mayhem having such devastating effect on people we might happen to know.

We appreciate all the messages of concern we have received from around the world and are very thankful for all the material/financial support we have received as well. It was never more needed as we try to help people rebuild their lives. For our part, our main concern is to get as many of our children back into school as son as possible so that the past four weeks may be obliterated from their young minds. We had expected to have 455 kids in our school on 7th January, but at this point we have not yet reached 300. They are returning slowly but many will not return for a variety of reasons. That is a great pity indeed.

Once again, may I express our thanks for the messages we have been getting regularly from all of you 'out there'. May God Bless you and may He also Bless Kenya and her people and protect them from self-destructing.

God Bless, (Bro.) Paul D. Brennan, Box 5064, Eldoret. Email: patriciankabongo@gmail.com


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