Two local girls, Sarah O’Connor and Alannah Scanlon, who are travelling to Calcutta with the HOPE FOUNDATION in April of next year.

Church Gate Collection

A church gate collection for the Christmas Street Lighting will be taken up this weekend on Saturday, November 10th & Sunday 11th. Your support would be very much appreciated.

Donkey Derby

Athea GAA club in conjunction with the underage GAA, the Athea ladies football club and Gaelic for Mothers and Others are holding a fundraising Donkey Derby at The Top of The Town on Saturday night, December 1st at All funds raised will go towards the new lights at the High Field and around the perimeter walking track, which is used widely. The public can support this event by purchasing a Donkey for €30 or a 1/3 share in a Donkey for €10. For the €30 you get to name the owner, trainer and Jockey for your Donkey and you get to name the Donkey or it can be given an appropriate name for you.

There will be six races on the night, plus an Auction race comprising of the six race winners who all receive cash prizes. There will be a tote in operation on the night with generous odds available. Come along for a great night’s crack and support the drive to light up the field. Donkeys are currently on sale from any committee members of the above clubs.

Athea – Young at Heart – Annual Christmas Party


Everyone Welcome – Age 21+ upwards.

Concelebrated Mass in Top of the Town Bar at 12 noon sharp followed by Dinner & Music by Blue Rhythm. €15 per person inclusive for Dinner, Dance, Raffle  &  Afternoon Tea. To Book: Please contact Peggy Casey on 087-9416223 or Maireád Langan on 087-6407026.

Menu: Beef or Turkey. Names must be in by Wednesday 28thNovember.

Take Away Dinners on the day, need to be ordered in advance when booking.

St. Vincent de Paul

Church Gate Collection

Will take place on Saturday, December 1st & Sunday 2nd. Your generosity, as always, would be appreciated.

Family Fund Day

Moyvane ICA will host a ‘Family Fun Day’ on Sunday, November 25th from 2pm to 4.30pm.

Events taking place will include: Tommy the Magician, Jumble Sale, Book Sale, Bake Sale and games galore. Santa and Mrs Claus will also be there so come along to meet them. A great day is in store for all ages.

Gorta Self Help

A sincere thank you to all who contributed so generously to our Church gate collection last weekend. A total of €518 was raised.

Athea GAA Club Draw

The 6th leg of the Club Draw will take place on Saturday, November 17th at the Top of the Town.


 Domhnall de Barra

Let me put my cards on the table straight away. I am a nationalist and there is nothing I would like to see more than Ireland, North and South, united as one country.  I did not say re-united because the country was never really a single state; it was a group of kingdoms ruled by families that continually fought each other to gain land or stock. Various invaders came over the years until the British took over nearly nine hundred years ago. They occupied the good lands and left the bad ones to those who did not want to rent  from them. History tells us of many risings over the centuries, all doomed to failure until 1916 which, although another failure, was the beginning of the end for British rule. It was an opportune time as the First World War was the main preoccupation of the British cabinet and it was easier to get rid of the “troublesome” Irish. Then a big mistake was made. Churchill outfoxed the men sent by DeValera  to negotiate the peace treaty in London and kept six counties in the North under British rule. This caused major division and a savage civil war ensued between those who wanted to accept the “Free State” and those who wanted to hold out for a 32 county Ireland. This gave birth to the two main political parties in the state; Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael. The rest, as they say, is history and we find ourselves today with a divided country despite the IRA campaign that caused mayhem in the North in the latter part of the last century.

So, it was the First World War that gave us our opportunity to break free but thousands of Irishmen fought and many died in that war for various reasons. Some joined to get away from the abject poverty that existed at the time while others believed it was the right thing to do to stop the Germans taking over Europe. Whatever the reason they could not have foreseen the conditions they would have to face at the front. Those that made it onto the mainland were stuck in trenches that were cold and damp and alive with vermin. Every so often they would have to go over the top and engage the enemy, sometimes in hand to hand combat. They were shot at, shelled and, worst of all, had to endure mustard gas, a vapour that sucked the air out of lungs and  caused a horrible death. It was savagery most foul and a senseless waste of human life. Those that survived were never the same again.

Around this time every year , the men who fought in the two wars are remembered by the wearing of the poppy and every year we have the same comments coming from certain quarters. Some say that wearing the poppy is glorifying war supporting the British war machine. They even go so far as to call the Irish who fought in those wars traitors who should  have stayed at home and fought for Irish independence. They were told, however, that the best way to achieve Irish independence was to fight in that war. They were not fighting for Britain even though they were wearing the uniform; they were fighting the Germans. Suppose, for a moment that Germany won the war. We would have been enslaved by them and would probably still be under their rule today so the men who fought and died are owed a debt of gratitude by us. They should be commemorated and their deeds should be remembered, not for who they fought with but who they fought against.

Some republicans mat have different ideas and that is their prerogative. It is not all about hating England for what they did to us; it is about  now finding a way to put an end to divisions and have a united Ireland. The first World War was the opportunity to get the 26 counties, Brexit could be the one that gives us the remaining six. It would be the answer to “hard borders” and an opportunity for Britain to get rid of a part of the UK that they don’t really want. A majority of people in the North voted to remain in the EU so, if there was a border poll now it would have a great chance of delivering what guerrilla warfare could not.

Our leaders, especially Fianna Fáil and Sinn Féin, should be driving this but they are wary of rocking the boat. It is an answer to the Brexit problem and the clue is in the name: it is not Western Britain, it is Northern Ireland.

In the meantime let us remember the brave soldiers who fought that we might be free.