The death has taken place of Kit O’Brien (nee Mulvihill ) Carnagh Ballyhahill at Cahermoyle Nursing Home. She was in her nineties, and one of the oldest people in the locality.  Her remains were removed from Madigan’s Funeral Home Shanagolden to Saint Colman’s Church Kilcolman on Monday 14th January. Her funeral mass was celebrated on the following day followed by burial in Kilbradern Cemetery. We extend sympathy to her brothers, sisters, nephews, nieces, extended family members, relatives and friends. May she rest in Peace.

The robberies and break-ins continues, around Ireland and the Gardai numbers diminish and the stations continue to close. Houses in the locality have been broken into in recent times, and valuable materials stolen, causing distress and financial hardship to the residents.  A floodlight outside Saint Mary’s Church Carrigkerry was also stolen, and the electrical cables attached left in a dangerous condition.  The floodlights were put in place in 2003 for the 125 Anniversary of the church. It was a lovely feature and it showed off the stone cut building at its best and many people were delighted to see it light up. People with information on any robberies are asked to contact the Gardai, and to keep a lookout for any suspicious behavior. Rural Ireland is under attack on several fronts, and nobody in the present Government seems to care, or engage with local communities to address the issues. The proposed cut in the personal alarms (reversed after public pressure) and the further reduction in gardai numbers is a case in point. Things will only get worse in time, and it will take the death of a robber to make the Government sit up and take notice.

Last year 2012 saw the Saint Kieran’s G.A.A. Club celebrate its fortieth anniversary. How the years have flown by from the birth of the club that saw the parishes of Ardagh/Carrigkerry and Coolcappa/Kilcolman, unite under the one banner. Many of the people that were involved in the formation of the club have now departed to the lofty playing fields of Heaven. It was a very exciting time for the officers, players, and supporters who all enjoyed wonderful times around Limerick and North Kerry. Carnivals and festivals were held at in most villages, and towns and Saint Kieran’s football team were probably the most invited team to play in them at the time. The club enjoyed a big following of committed supporters who filled many a sideline, and helped to finance many a fund raising project. There was a great buzz when the Saint’s were playing the likes of Moyvane, Tarbert Finuge, Athea, Askeaton Glin and Ballyhahill, in a tournament match. The matches were played mainly on Friday and Sunday nights, once the cows were milked and the players present for duty. It was probably the second match of the day for most of the players, who would have played a divisional board or county fixture in the afternoon. The matches usually ended in fading light leading to many questionable decisions. The rope keeping back the crowds along the side lines was never sufficient, and it gradually ended at ground level as the tempo of the match and the exchanges hotted up. Friendships were stretched as well as jerseys, and a bout of fisticuffs often erupted. I am sure some supporters enjoyed this side of things as much as the high standard of football being played. The weather was far better back then, and it was the midgets that caused most problems for the people. The language was most colourful and many referees were the butt of the comments, often calling their parentage into question. Rural Ireland was well populated and jobs were plentiful and the majority of the youth had folding notes in their hip pockets. Society cared for people and communities were alive and vibrant with activity. People were economical with their recourses and moved slower to better themselves, and debt was seldom mentioned. How times have changed in rural Ireland as we enter 2013 in the midst of a recession that has seen our people having to emigrate to escape a future of poverty. In recent years we have seen factories, and businesses close and unemployment soar. Our villages have lost shops, pubs, post offices, service stations, creameries, banks, and now Gardai barracks. The fabric of our rural society has been torn apart, and nobody is listening. The local G.A.A. Clubs still survive but they too are under pressure due to falling numbers, and increased costs. The club offers people an outlet for their time and talents, and a sense of belonging to their own area. All clubs could do with extra members to help run their affairs, and a place is available for all to get involved.  Plans are now being put in place for the New Year and positions are available so why not give it a go. We thank the Saint Kieran’s club for the wonderful memories they have provided over the past forty years, and we wish them well in the coming year.

Congratulations to the 5th and 6th class students and staff of Kilcolman N.S. who presented a project entitled ‘’How can we harness Methane Gas as a Source of Energy?’’ at this year’s BT Young Scientist Exhibition in Dublin. A lot of time and hard work in research over the months was invested in the project.

Newcastle West Golf Club held their Captain’s drive-in 2013 before a big crowd at their course in Rathgonan Ardagh, which opened in 1994. We congratulate Frank Moore Carrigkerry who is the new Vice-Captain, Peg Murphy Grouse Lodge, Ardagh who is the new Lady Vice-Captain, and Dan Madden Coolcappa who is the new Junior Captain. The club is seeking material at present for their book celebrating their 75 year history.  Material of interest is to be handed into the office before Friday 15thFebruary.

Carrig Celtic B lost 2-0 at home to Abbeyfeale Utd B in the Division 2 Desmond League Cup 1st Round on Sunday 13th January. Old Mill lost 2-0 away to Glantine in Division 1 of the Desmond League. In the ladies First Division League Carrig Celtic defeated Creeves Celtic 2-0 with goals from Lisa Collins, and Bridget Liston.

Kilcolman Rovers held a function to announce and honour their best team over the past 44 years at Peadar’s Bar Ardagh, on Saturday 12th January. The team chosen was Terence Madigan, Kieran Madigan, John Keane, Tommy Greaney, Donie Herlihy, Thomas Keane, Mike Buckley, Pa Leahy, David Nolan, Tom O’Connell, John McGrath, Reserves. Donie Donovan, Donie Culhane, Willy Mc Mahon, John Donovan, Joe Mulcahy, Colm Kennedy.   Jim Neville, Pat Reidy and Matty Histon were picked as joint managers, with Pat Dalton the reserve manager. Merit Award went to Donie Donovan for his work for the club over the years.  Joe Carrig was the M.C.

Limerick defeated Clare by 2-16 to 2-13 following extra time in the Mc Grath Cup quarter final at Foynes on Sunday 13th January. Johnny McCarthy and Darragh Treacy when introduced were impressive for Limerick. Brendan McCarthy was corner back for the Limerick U-21 Team that lost to Clare in a challenge by 2-11 to 1-9.

The lottery Jackpot was not won, and we congratulate the lucky dip winners.

Congratulations to Timmy Murphy and Tom Culhane, who were first prize winners at the card game held in Shanagolden Hall on Friday 11th January.

The junior set dancing/ceili classes have resumed in Carrigkerry Community Centre, on Friday evening’s from 8.30pm. The adult set dancing classes take place in the Con Colbert Memorial Hall Athea, on Tuesday evenings at 9pm. All are welcome to the classes.