Firstly, sympathy is extended to the Kiely and Brosnan families in Knocknagorna on the recent death of Michael Kiely in Clonmel, who had been ill for some time. Sympathy to Pa, Joan Brosnan and Willie Kiely who resides in England. ‘May he rest in peace.

I’m told that between the years 2011 and 2012 40,000 people left our shores and headed ‘Down Under’ to seek employment in Australia. That is a huge number alone to Australia never mind those who have left for Canada, the USA, England and other cities. The situation isn’t too bad for the single boys and girls who emigrate, but so sad for married couples where the dads have no other choice but to earn their living abroad and miss their children going through the different stages of growing up. Someone who recently returned home to Athea to visit on holidays from Australia couldn’t believe that all her friends had gone – none of them were here. One wonders when it’s going to end – if ever?

Tickets for the forthcoming Fashion Show on September 28th are going very well at the moment and as there are a limited number, due to hall space and ramps etc for our local models you are advised to buy them quickly as “when they’re gone, they’re gone”. I think everyone should support this Tidy Towns fundraiser – it’s our turn to give back to them for all the tremendous work they have done all throughout the past year. Everyone that passes through our village has nothing but praise for it and rightly so.

‘The Scholarship” – a very nice programme on RTE1 as I write these lines tonight, in which the renowned Belvedere College in Dublin gives the chance to young boys from underprivileged backgrounds (some from single parent families, others from settled traveller families and some where their parents are in wheelchairs through injury etc) to be in with a chance to secure a much sought after scholarship to the college, which indeed would make a huge difference to their young lives. Unfortunately they had 58 applicants but only 8 places. However, with careful scrutiny and meetings with family, the places no doubt went to the most worthy.

Well all children have now returned to school and thankfully September is looking fairly good – Listowel Races are just around the corner and would you believe at Costco in America Christmas decorations etc have been on sale for the past few weeks. What next?