Archive for August, 2017


Ciara O’Sullivan, Upper Athea showing off the medals she won for traditional singing at the Fleadh this year. Ciara, who is 11 years old, performed at the Comhaltas singing night at Batt’s Bar recently and sings regularly at Rambling houses and sinning sessions in Kerry and West Limerick.

“Get Knockdown, Get Back Up Again”

Family Fun Day

“The Knockdown Challenge” 5k/10k Run takes place on Sunday, September 24th. Knockdown Village Centre, registration 10.30am-11.45am. Kick off at 12 pm. Entry: Individual €10, Family €20. All in aid of the Children’s Medical Research Foundation, Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital, Crumlin.

Fundraising Movie Day

There will be a fundraising movie day on the 9th of September in Con Colbert Memorial Hall. This is in aid of the Limerick Neo Natal Unit and the Jack and Jill Foundation. The movie ‘Boss’ will screen for children at 3pm. Tickets €6 (includes children’s refreshments).

The movie ‘Raising Arizona’ will screen for adults at 7pm. Tickets €10 (includes glass of wine/beer). Tickets are on sale at Horgan’s Garage, Athea or contact Annemarie at 087-9614131.

Thank You

On behalf of the Woulfe family we would like to thank Athea United Soccer Club most sincerely for the Minute Silence they organised on Sunday last at The Vales prior to the first game of the season for mom (Penny). Athea United was a massive part of her life and it was a very lovely fitting tribute to her.


Domhnall de  Barra

Extreme weather conditions are getting more frequent and are happening all over the world. We have droughts, heatwaves, earthquakes, landslides, extreme flooding etc that some say are caused by global warming. There are those who disagree and say that weather  always changed even before global warming was ever mentioned. Whatever the cause we are faced with the prospect of uncertain climatic conditions for the foreseeable future. We are used to watching natural disasters on TV from other countries and while we have great sympathy for the people involved they are somehow far removed and kind of unreal, as if it was a fictional drama. This past week it was brought home to us in graphic detail by the atrocious conditions in the North West of the country. Donegal, in particular, took the brunt of it with a storm that experts say happens only once in a century. Roads and bridges were swept away by the floods caused by torrential downpours. Peoples homes and property were destroyed and some farm stock were wiped out. Donegal is one of the most beautiful counties in Ireland and its people are the nicest and most hospitable you will find anywhere. I know this through my personal contacts with them and I have spent many happy hours in the past playing music in a place where it is really appreciated. They have a lovely lilting accent and seem to be laid back all the time. It came as no surprise to me therefore when I heard them being interviewed on the radio about the local disasters and how they were coping, to hear that the communities were rallying around and everybody was helping everyone else. This is the true community spirit that has made this country what it is today.

In days gone by, in rural Ireland, everybody knew everyone else and people were always in and out of each others houses. They did not always get along and when Mary met Molly they might talk about Kate and what a “rip” she was. The same could happen if  Mary met Kate when Molly would be the one getting the “cutting”.  One would be forgiven for thinking they hated each other but if any of them had any trouble the other two would be the first on the scene to help. Nobody was ever left without help in any situation. If a man died young and left a widow and children, the neighbours always made sure that the turf was cut and the hay saved. Nobody asked, it was the done thing.

That spirit is still there though manifested in a different way. TDs and government ministers are quick to take credit for the improvements in rural Ireland but it is in fact the people themselves who have done the most to make this happen. Take our own parish. There are a number of voluntary organisations that raise money on a regular basis. Sporting organisations like the GAA, Soccer, Ladies Football, Basketball Club, Community Games etc are all funded from local donations. Then you have the Community Council, Con Colbert Hall, Tidy Towns, Athea National School and several other smaller organisations like St. Vincent De Paul, Voluntary Housing etc., all getting money from the community. It is given willingly and the volunteers who man these clubs and organisations are the real heroes who give of their time, week after week to help make a better parish for us all. The result is staggering. We now have two of the best sporting pitches in the county, one out the Glin Road and the other on top of the hill. They had the foresight to go ahead and renovate their grounds for the betterment of our young players. We have a Community Hall that is used by basketball clubs from far and wide because of its excellent facilities. Our school is a state of the art educational facility for the children of Athea and gives them a great start in life. The Community Council provides employment for about 15 people, year after year, through the various CE schemes and the village has been transformed by the work done. The Tidy Towns Committee put in Trojan work making sure that the village is looking its best. Volunteers can be seen in the evenings and at the weekends going around watering flowers and cutting grass and weeds. The Church was rebuilt with money from the parish and people keep contributing generously every week. Other organisations look after housing and necessary material for those less well off in our society and First Responders are there  in a medical emergency. This is Athea but we are not unique. It is replicated in small rural parishes all over the country. By helping each other we become stronger. It may take a disaster such as they had up in Donegal to bring it to mind but we should always be aware of the amount of work done by local volunteers to create a better environment in which to live. We owe them a debt of gratitude and the best way to repay them is by joining them. If you have a couple of spare hours in the week, please considering joining one of the many clubs and organisations in the parish. It is better to give than receive, they say,  and I know from my own experience the satisfaction of seeing your work come to fruition. Two phrases spring to mind: “many hands make light work” and “give a little, it will help a lot”.

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Kathleen’s Corner-30/08/2017

By Kathleen Mullane

‘Best Wishes’

The very best of luck this week to all those, firstly who are starting national school for the first time, also to all those graduating to secondary school, and last but by no means least – to all those “that are flying the nest” and heading off to the various colleges, leaving worried and anxious parents – they’ll be grand!

Congrats and good wishes are extended to Mary Ita and Ger Collins of Knocknagorna on the birth, last week, of their new baby boy they are naming Bill, a little brother for Grace. Congrats also to the very proud grandparents Kathleen  & Paddy Collins of Knocknagorna and Peggy & Bill Casey of Colbert Street, Bill being really proud that his name is being carried on !

Well we were blessed with the weather for the graveyard masses at Holy Cross and Templeathea last week, with big crowds attending on both occasions. Fr. Duggan praised all for their help in organizing these “very special masses”.

Sympathy is extended to Mary Ellen Collins of Templeathea and her family on the death of John Joe Meade (N.T) recently who was married to her sister Nora Mai. May he rest in peace.

What awful devastation that mudslide caused in Donegal during the week with families bereft of their homes and lifelong possessions – hopefully they will get all the help that they so deserve to try and get their homes together again.

Then ‘Hurricane Harvey’ hit Texas at the weekend killing 2 people, knocking housed to the ground, power lines on fire – just complete and utter carnage. One wonders is Global warming coming too fast or what’s gone wrong?

The ‘Mayo’ flags have still to be kept flying in the parish until they meet Dublin in the next few weeks – that’s if the Athea/Mayo supporter’s hearts hold out.

Well the Listowel Races are much earlier, I think, than usual this year, starting on September 10th. They will only barely be gone back to school when they will be looking forward to time off for the races, not to mention the Friday which is Ladies Day, which means a “dressing up” day for the young people.

Thought for the week:- “No one thinks of Winter – when the grass is green”

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Knockdown News-30/08/2017

By Peg Prendeville

It is Back to School week; the Rose of Tralee has been picked, Listowel Races are coming up followed by the Ploughing championship and the casual carefree days of summer are well and truly over. I suppose it was not a very bad summer as we had some nice days here and there but we had no long spell of sunny weather either. However we must accept what we have and enjoy it. At least we are all safe in our houses not like some people in Donegal during last week.

I spent a few days recently enjoying long walks with the grandchildren, some in Abbeyleix where we strolled through Killamuck bog and another walk in Durrow along by the Nore river. The children loved skipping along looking for fairies, rabbits and dinosaurs and whatever took their fancy while I just enjoyed the peace of the woods and the water! I notice that there are lots of berries this year indicating a hard winter to come. Here at home Jim and I visited Kells Bay Tropical Gardens back near Glenbeigh where there were dinosaurs sculpted out of fallen trees. A very imaginative idea. Previous to that I had a day in Terra Nova Gardens near Athlacca where a couple have built up a Fairy Garden on a half acre site. Again the grandchildren had a great time spotting fairies hidden amongst the trees. So the holidays ended well.

Most children that I meet through the library and at home are glad to be getting back to meeting their school-friends again. There are no young children to start school in the Knockdown area at the moment but I am glad to hear that a new class of junior infants will begin in Ballyhahill on Thursday. Best wishes to my grandchild Ayda Daly from Dromagarraun who is excited to be starting.

Meditation and Mindfulness Classes are beginning in Cloverfield in Glin on Monday September 18 for 8 weeks. Beginners at 6.30 to 8pm. Continuation group 8.15 to 9.45 pm. €100. Booking essential. Ring Ali at 0876452227.


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