Theresa O’Halloran, Sean O’Halloran and Annette Mann starring in “A Family Affair” which opens at the Glórach, Abbeyfeale  on Tuesday night, March 10th

Theresa O’Halloran, Sean O’Halloran and Annette Mann starring in “A Family Affair” which opens at the Glórach, Abbeyfeale on Tuesday night, March 10th


Due to phenomenal demand and more turned away from the door on last Sunday night due to large crowds, it has been decided to stage the play ‘It’s the Real McCoy’ for one final night this coming Thursday night March 5th at Con Colbert Memorial Hall, Athea at 8pm. Tickets available at the door and doors opens at 7pm.

Do you want Your Say on The Church Today?

A public meeting will be held on Monday 9th March at 8pm  in Con Colbert Community Hall. Every thought, idea and opinion will be listened to whether of strong faith, diminished faith or no faith.

Father Eamonn Fitzgibbon of the Diocesan Office along with your Parish Synod Delegates will be facilitating on the night.

CFRs say Thanks

The Community First Responders want to say a very big Thank You to everyone who gave so generously to our church gate collection last weekend.  A fantastic amount of €812.63 was collected.  This money will be used to maintain/purchase equipment and train new volunteers.  If anyone is interested in joining or finding out more about the group, contact training instructor Richael Griffin at 086 8841171.  Everyone is very welcome to our AGM which is always held in Oct/Nov of every year where you can view all our equipment and find out more about the group’s activities.  A reminder that our number is 087 2737077, 6pm – 8am Mon to Fri and all weekend.

“A Family Affair”

Glórach Players, Abbeyfeale are finalising their rehearsals for Sam Cree’s play “A Family Affair” which opens on Tuesday March 10th.  The cast of this comedy includes Donal Woulfe, Sean O’Halloran, Theresa O’Halloran, Karina Buckley and Domhnall de Barra, all from Athea.


Changes in our Time

I was looking recently at a film made in the early days of television in this country  and I was surprised at the change in the way  the people of this locality express themselves. The programme was made in Abbeyfeale for “Radharc” in the early sixties. Much of it was filmed during a fair day in the town  and a number of local men and women were interviewed about their lives and the locality. It was lovely to hear the old West Limerick/North Kerry dialect with the odd word of Irish thrown in for good measure.  It brought me back to my own young days going to Kelly’s school in Abbeyfeale. On a fair day it was impossible to cycle through the town which was full of cattle, pigs, sheep and other livestock. Walking through, it was great to hear the tangling and deal-making  of the farmers with the buyers, some of whom came from far up the country. They could easily be recognised by their accents which seemed strange to us. I remember the first time I ever heard a different accent to our own. It was as a young boy being taken to England on a holiday by my grandmother. We left Abbeyfeale station at 8am in the morning and having taken the train to Limerick, Limerick Junction, Kingsbridge (now Heuston Station), and  Dunlaoghaire, went on the cattle boat to Holyhead. At Hollyhead we boarded the train for Crewe, changed there for Rugby and finally got the train to Coventry arriving at 8.15am, 24 and a quarter hours after leaving home. You could be in Australia now in less time. It was when I boarded the train in Holyhead  that I heard a Welsh accent for the first time. I was amazed that it could be so different but I soon learned that  accents changed from place to place, each with its own beauty.

In Ireland we had beautiful regional accents from Donegal to Waterford , Kerry to Antrim. They seem to be dying out and it is a pity. Young girls in particular have adopted  a way of speaking that is influenced by a manufactured accent from Dublin 4. This way of speaking removes all the broad vowels with roundabouts being pronounced  “rindabytees”, houses are “hyses” and apparently there is a big city on the South coast called “Quork”. There is also an upward inclination at the end of each sentence as if it was a question.  Why are we so apologetic about our natural accent that we have to  imitate the so-called celebrities on our airwaves?  Some people went to England and America in their youth, lived their lives in those countries without ever changing. Others went for six months and returned  speaking like cockneys and yanks.  Is it a lack of self esteem and confidence that makes us want to blend in? Yes, we have to speak clearly and at a normal pace to make ourselves understood but keeping one’s own accent has never been a barrier to getting to the top in any profession. During my days as president of Comhaltas I had many dealings with RTE. The head of the authority at the time was Paddy Moriarty from West Kerry. He was also head of the ESB and many other national organisations but never compromised on his beautiful Kerry Gaeltacht brogue. Neither did his brother, the famous broadcaster Micheál. A man called Denis O’Connell from Moyvane was the top man in banking in this country for many years. You would never think he left North Kerry. How come it is only the Irish that have the tendency to change their accent? You would never find a Welsh or Scottish person doing so and the English have kept their own regional distinctive accents and encourage their broadcasters to use them. One final grouse: why have we all, men and women, become “guys”.  We still have a bit of growing up to do.

 Domhnall de Barra