Thursday 27th August 2009

Another Great Fethard Medieval Festival
The third Medieval Festival may not have been ‘third time lucky’ as far as the weather is concerned, but it still was one hell of a weekend for the town. Recession or not, the festival buzz came back again and a great time was had despite the one cloud burst on the Sunday afternoon.
The Festival kicked off at 4pm on Saturday when the ‘Fired by Colour’ ceramic exhibition by the ‘Crampscastle School of Pottery’ opened to the sound of harpist Steve Haggerty in the Town Hall.
Then at 5pm local guide, Mary Hanrahan, led twenty-five people on the Medieval Town Trail which ended at the Abymill at 6.30pm where the Conservation and Management plan for Fethard Town Walls was officially launched. This was followed by a very well supported live open-air concert by Paul Brady at the Town Wall. Fans were treated to a unique show in a unique setting.
On Sunday local youth bands played from 12 to 2pm in the Square, and then our best medieval parade yet marched down Main Street and along the Valley Park. It was a magnificent sight, especially as it sneaked its way along by the river, passing by the Falcons that kept a keen eye on proceedings. Apart from the large numbers in period costume there was the magnificent twenty-foot long ‘Medieval Tapestry’ made by the children of the area at the recent workshops. This was then hoisted onto the Mural Tower on the Town Wall.
Local organisations again came up trumps when needed. The Scouts came to the rescue in a big way by bringing their tent off the mountain and erecting it on Sunday morning and, boy, was it badly needed when the ‘sky opened’ and the rain came pouring down. This happened just as Colm McGrath and his warring armies of re-enactors were strutting their stuff and a wag was heard to say that, “they must have been doing a bloody medieval rain dance.”
The Rugby club again fed the nation, and the Macra club just made everyone wetter, including the chairperson of the organising committee, with their wet sponges and stocks torture — all to the sweet music supplied by the Lee Valley String Band.
The Newport ladies held an ‘Inquisition’, which showed up how little everyone knows, but there were no nasty consequences for this, and Tommy O’Brien from Red City proved to be the most knowledgeable man (or the best ‘cogger’) around on the day.
Well, the secret is out. Fethard Historical Society set up a ‘Mint’ for the day and silversmith, Rory Donohoe, was busy striking your very own special ‘Fethard Medieval Coin’. The special coin striking die just arrived in time from abroad and the coin, showing the Corporation Seal of Fethard (The Deer) and the Sheela na gig from Watergate, was a huge favourite with everyone. The die will now be put away and will not appear again until Wall Towns Day 2010. So the owners of the 2009 coin are a very exclusive bunch indeed.
This year’s Festival was again made possible with the support of our main sponsor, The Heritage Council, South Tipperary County Council, County Museum and County Heritage Forum. A particular thanks to Heritage Officer Labhaoise McKenna, who did great work, Area Engineer, Eoin Powell and Jimmy Horan of the local Council staff who both gave vital support and help.  We look forward now to 2010 with bigger and better plans.

Launch of major plan for Fethard’s Walls
Saturday night last was a significant night for all those interested in Fethard and its development as the best example of a medieval walled town in the state.
A Conservation and Management Plan for the Medieval Town Walls, carried out by Oxford Archaeology and commissioned by South Tipperary County Council in partnership with the Heritage Council, was launched by Cllr John Fahey at an event hosted by Fethard Historical Society in the Abymill Theatre.
A large crowd of locals and visitors came to hear Julian Munby, of Oxford Archaeology, speak about the Town Walls and their significance. Simply put, he said that Fethard is of “outstanding significance” and thus its preservation and enhancement is of national importance.
This very detailed Conservation and Management Plan will now inform the next Local Area Plan for Fethard and should finally set down in great detail how the old medieval area of the town, especially the walls themselves, should be managed.
All the landowners who adjoin the wall were invited to Saturday night’s launch and they were given priority to copies of the plan which were available on the night.
This new plan, along with the Public Realm Plan for the town (issued shortly) now provide Fethard with a great wealth of ‘best practice’ ideas, which should ensure that some of the mistakes of the past will not ever be repeated.

Youth Café volunteers meeting
A meeting for leaders and volunteers, involved and those willing to get involved, will be held on this Thursday at 8pm at Fethard Youth Centre. We particularly invite new adults willing to help out at the Youth Café or the running of the Youth Centre.
We will use this meeting to plan for autumn and winter schedule.
The Youth Café continues to open Friday nights from 7.30pm to 10pm.

Farewell to Fr. Peter Haughey OSA
Our parish and neighbouring areas bid a fond farewell to Fr. Peter Haughey OSA (Prior at the Augustinian Abbey) as he leaves us at the weekend to take up his new assignment at the Augustinian Friary, John’s Lane, Dublin.
Fr. Peter came to us in 2005 as we were celebrating 700 years of the Abbey’s foundation here in Fethard and he provided wonderful leadership and support for the completion of a most successful year of celebration. In the meantime he has shown great sensitivity and patience in overseeing some outstanding restoration work on our beloved Abbey.
Father came as no stranger to us as he had previously served here from 1985 to 1988. He will be fondly remembered as we offer him our heartfelt thanks and wish him every grace and blessing in the future.
We extend a warm welcome to his successor, Fr. Crean OSA, a native of Limerick.

Firearm renewals and new applications for the Fethard Area
The Government have, this year, updated the system to register firearms and it is now necessary for all current users and applicants to fill out a new form for each gun in their possession. The new licence will be valid for three years and will cost €80 which can only be paid at the Post Office when all the paper work is complete and approved.
The form is available at the local Garda Station and if you have difficulty with completing the form the local Garda are more than willing to help.
The completed form, without money, must then be handed in to the local station for imputing on their computer system.
For further information or to download forms online, visit www.garda.ie and click on Firearms Licensing.

Legendary Loudest Whisper
Loudest Whisper will make a welcome return visit to Fethard, on Friday 28th August, when they play their unique blend of Folk/Rock music. The band is considered ‘legendary’ in many quarters and should not to be missed.

Congratulations Amy
Congratulations to Amy Sweeney, The Valley, Fethard, who came first in the Young Handlers Section of the Tanzanite Miniature Horse Show held in Maynooth on Saturday 15th August.

Fethard & Killusty Community Lotto
The numbers drawn on 19th August were 11, 24, 27 and 28.  We had no Jackpot winner and no ‘Match 3’ winner so the following drawn tickets won €50 each:
Chris O'Dwyer, 3, Strylea, Fethard;
Teresa Roche, 22 Woodvale Walk, Fethard;
Michael Russell, Mullinahone.
The three following Lucky Dip winners received €50 each:
Trish Kearney, c/o Coolmore Stud;
Brud Roche, 22, Woodvale Walk, Fethard;
Sheena Fitzgerald-Ryan (online ticket).
Next week’s Jackpot continues at €10,000 and the Jackpot sellers prize is €1000.
You can now also play our lotto online from your own computer by visiting www.fethard.com/lotto.

Thanks for your support
The “Missing in Ireland Support Service” would like to express their sincere gratitude to all who supported the wonderful ladies who completed the Women’s Mini Marathon to raise funds for this service. A total of €2,077 was raised which will go towards our help-line, which is now up and running. The telephone number is 1890 442 552

Fethard Juvenile GAA Club

The Juvenile Club would like to send a big thank you to everyone who helped make their Golf Classic the huge success it was, including the sponsors, the businesses of Fethard, those that entered a team, and bought a raffle ticket. Thanks also to Ian O’Connor for providing the entertainment on the night of the prizegiving, which was held in Lonergans pub. The money raised will go towards the good of the juveniles of Fethard, so a heart felt thank you to the organising committee, your hard work and dedication paid off on the day and you can certainly be proud of your achievements.
Our U-14 hurling team are through to a South semifinal and we wish them the very best of luck. The date, venue and time is to be decided. Congratulations on getting this far
The U-16 hurling team are at home to Swan on Monday evening, report next week
The annual VHI Cúl Camp kicks off on Monday 24th August and we are sure this will be a huge success. More details next week.
The Juvenile Club will hold their AGM in September, date to be decided, it has been a great year for the Juvenile Club and we would love to see more parents or adults getting involved

Fethard Macra Club
Fethard Macra participated in the Fethard Town Wall Day on the 23rd August, thanks to all who took part and attended.
Impromptu Public Speaking will be held in Rathkeevan Hall at 8pm on the 4th September, all are welcome to attend. Fethard Macra will be fielding a team.
The next meeting of Fethard will take place on the 8th September at 9pm in Butlers Bar in Fethard.
For further information contact Micheal at 087 9019443 or email Fethardmacra@gmail.com or on Bebo ‘FethardM’ also check out our page on Facebook. Further information can also be found on www.southtippmacra.com.

Fethard GAA Club News
Fethard senior footballers contest the South Final next Sunday in Ardfinnan at 6.30pm when, for the third year in a row, they face Moyle Rovers who are going for their fourth South title in a row, last achieved by Ardfinnan in 1961-1964. We wish them the very best of luck.
The Under-21 B Hurling quarterfinal played on 22nd August was a thriller with our boys coming out with a single point win, Fethard 4-10, Clonmel Og 2-15. Fethard and their ability to score goals at vital stages was to prove crucial in their victory. Eoin O' Connell though marked tightly had a marvellous game contributing 1- 07 (1-04) from frees to his team's total. He is undoubtedly an exciting young talent and was well supported on the night by Gavin Fitzgerald, Dean Tobin, Peter Gough, Alan O'Connor, Richard Gorey, Tom Gilpin and Ciarán Ryan.
The Fethard team was: J.P. McGrath, Gavin Fitzgerald, Declan Doyle, Niall Hayes, Thomas O'Connell, Dean Tobin, James Kelly, Jamie O' Keefe, Peter Gough, Eoin O'Connell, Richard Gorey, Alan O'Connor, Aaron O'Donovan, Tom Gilpin and Ciarán Ryan.
Our Lotto Jackpot was not won. The numbers drawn were 6, 7, 17 and 30. We had two match three winners of €75 each to: Noelle Leahy, Annesgift, Fethard, and Kaci Jane Condon (c/o Merrys Clonmel. The €50 Lucky Dip was won by Mary Newport Congress Terrace, Fethard. Thanks to Fethard Electrical for supplying the tickets. We thank all those who contributed to the Fethard GAA collection last weekend.



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