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Sunday 14th June 1998

    Pub Spy at Lonergan's, Fethard, Co. Tipperary.

    "A comfortable establishment, with a pint of black priced at £1.95."

    PUB SPY and his crack team of commandos have been dispatched to the sunny south east to find a bar with a beer garden to soak up the sun.
    It was mission impossible from the start. The sunny south east was there in name only, so it was back to the old routine of slouching inconspicuously at a bar counter.
    The commandos had been cooped up for days and were thirsty for work.
    Pub Spy had to restrain them from running into the first pub they saw. He wanted a pub that would really put the team to the test.
    Pub Spy had deliberately steered clear of the main towns and during the scenic route back to Dublin ended up in Fethard, Co. Tipperary.

    The city slicker commandos were almost afraid of what they would find behind pub doors. They were sure the "culchies", as they called anyone from beyond the pale, would recognise them straight away.
    Pub Spy decided to take his chances and brought the crew into Lonergan’s on Main St. Fethard. The crew were taken back when they steeped inside the doors of the premises. From the outside Lonergan’s seemed a small unassuming bar but nothing was further from the truth. The team had landed in a thriving premises. Pub Spy had arrived just as the clean up operation was underway after what seemed a very busy lunch trade in food.
    Within minutes Lonergan's was transformed from a cosy eatery into a serious bar. The pub seemed to stretch on and on until finally the team found themselves into the back part of the bar. Forget any notions of a seedy snug this was like sitting in the comfort of your own living room with the added bonus of having drink on tap for the night. And good drink it was too. At £1.95 for a pint of black the gargle was going down very well.
    The commandos were getting too comfortable into the new snug so Pub Spy ordered them to infiltrate the low-down on the place. The notion of drinking with "culchles" soon went out the window. It was a cosmopolitan crowd who frequented Lonergan’s. The commandos had arrived in horse country and were as likely to meet Australian, African or British people as they were the Irish. Some of the team settled themselves into the opposite end of the long wooden bar counter, where they could get a birds eye view of the TV.

    Pub Spy was baffled by the lack of toilet facilities and thought he had the perfect opportunity to find fault with Lonergan’s. He was mistaken. Never one to rave about the merits of a loo, Pub Spy had to admit there was something quaint about the arrangement in Lonergan’s. Male and Female punters alike had to go out into an adjoining to get to the toilets.
    Expecting an old wooden outhouse he was surprised to find pristine clean modern facilities.
    On wondering out to survey the toilets Pub Spy chanced upon one of Lonergan’s best kept secrets - a beer garden. It seemed Lonergan’s had thought of everything, but there was nothing they could do about the weather. Drinking in the beer garden would be another days work.
    Pub Spy rounded up the commandos who seemed strangely reluctant to leave. The combination of good drink and good company was appealing.

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