Ed. O'Connor, Captain of Athea Golf Society, presenting his Captain's Prize to  winner Tommy White in Newcastle West on Saturday last.

Ed. O’Connor, Captain of Athea Golf Society, presenting his Captain’s Prize to
winner Tommy White in Newcastle West on Saturday last.

Ed O'Connor, Captain of Athea Golf Society, presenting his Captain's Prize to runner-up Paul Curry

Ed O’Connor, Captain of Athea Golf Society, presenting his Captain’s Prize to runner-up Paul Curry









Paraic Enright,  Dermot Pierse & T.J. Hunt at the Limerick U21  Hurling  Final

Paraic Enright, Dermot Pierse & T.J. Hunt at the Limerick U21  Hurling Final


Movie Nite at the Community Hall

The movie ‘Home’ will be shown in the hall on Saturday evening next, September 26th at 5pm. This is a cinema fundraiser that’s pedal powered by our local cyclists. You can also dress up as your favourite movie character. Tickets are €6.50 for adults and €5 for children. Children under 10 must be accompanied by an adult. All proceeds to the Limerick Neo Natal Fund and The Jack and Jill Foundation. Please support.

Gala West Limerick Fashion Show

In aid of invalid section of Limerick Diocesan Pilgrimage to Lourdes will be held in the Devon Inn Hotel, Templeglantine on Wednesday 7th October. Cheese and wine reception. Show starts at 8.00pm. Lots of valuable prizes. Tickets €10 available from committee or at the door. Please support if you can.

Set & Social Dance Classes

Sets and social dance classes for beginners started on Monday, September 21st from 8-30 to 10-30pm. at the Top of the Town, Athea and will continue  on Monday nights for the winter.

Set dancing for advanced dancers at the GAA Clubhouse, Abbeyfeale on Wednesday nights starting September 23 from 8-30 to 10-30pm.

Social dance classes at The Railway Bar, Abbeyfeale on Tuesday nights starting September 29 from 8-30 to 10-30pm.  For further information contact 087-9267037/087-6101936.

Looking Back

Listening to the radio this morning I heard a man talk about the days of his youth when bees were plentiful. He remembered gathering bees in an empty jam jar with holes cut in the lid for air. Himself and his friends put the different coloured bees into different categories and would sit admiring them in the back garden. It wasn’t long before the bees, who had been scurrying around the jar, became listless and eventually stopped moving altogether. It struck him that there was something wrong and  he realised that by capturing these lovely creatures and putting them in confinement was cruel and unnecessary.

It struck a chord with me because I remember doing the same thing myself in the field near our home in Cratloe. In those days the fields were full of wild flowers and the air was filled with the sound of bees flying from flower extracting the nectar and storing it in the little sacks down by their legs. It was easy to get the jar over the flower and slip the lid on before the bee knew what was happening. To the best of my memory we never kept them until they died but released them as soon as the novelty of capturing them wore off. Little did we think that the day would come when the honey bee would be an endangered species and liable to disappear altogether due to lack of flowers.

Progress has a price. Farming has become intensified with every acre being treated to produce as much grass as possible. The use of pesticides and the spreading of slurry have also contributed to the scarcity of the wild flowers that sustained the bee. It is however a serious problem. We need the bees for pollination otherwise plants will also die off. With this in mind the government are now advocating the creation of wild gardens along motorways and railway lines and are encouraging people with gardens to leave a little for the wild flowers. It is a very good idea and one which will cost very little. We can all do our bit  for the bee and at the same time enrich our surroundings with the sight of the most beautiful wild flowers.

I suppose we were a bit cruel in those days but as children we did not realise it. Catching tadpoles and keeping them in a jar usually ended up with the death of the tadpole. We even had them at school and the teacher would let us keep them on top of a press for all to see. Another pastime was seeking bird’s nests. They were easily found and we used love to have “our own” nests. Some children would take out the eggs and play with them not realising that by doing so they were giving them a death sentence. The mother bird would have nothing to do with the eggs once they were disturbed and handled by humans.

This time of the year was a great time for us. Listowel races were coming up and we needed money to visit the Market Yard where the amusements held sway. There was no point in asking our parents for money as things were tight at the time and there were more pressing needs than financing our amusement in Listowel. The hedgerows however provide the answer. There was a factory in Brosna that made fruit juices. The best known of them was Pep Apple Juice but they also made blackberry juice. The hedgerows were full of blackberries that were just getting ripe at this time of the year so off we went with our gallons to collect the blackberries and take them to the local shop to be weighed and turned into money. For the benefit of the younger readers; a gallon was a  round sweet tin that held eight pints of liquid and was used to bring water from the well and milk from the creamery. It takes a hell of a long time to fill a gallon with blackberries and when the task was completed we were covered in scratches from the briars  and our fingers were blue as was our mouth from eating the ripe fruit. How happy we were with our couple of shillings in our pockets hitting off for the races. Happy days!

Domhnall de Barra