By Tom Aherne

The Minister for Rural and Community Development, Heather Humphreys, visited Ardagh village on Friday, April 8. It was part of her tour around the West Limerick area to see the work done as a result of funding received from her department. Also present were the three TDs from the Constituency Junior Ministers, Patrick O’Donovan, and Niall Collins and Richard O’Donoghue. Mayor, Richard Butler, who has family connections in Ardagh,  CEO Pat Daly councillors and Council staff. St Kieran’s Heritage Association were well represented as well as members of the general public.

The Station House was the first stop to see the transformation that has taken place there beside the passing Greenway.  Gordon Daly, on behalf of the Council, described the work carried out. Both the Minister and Mayor addressed the gathering and then unveiled a timber replica of the Ardagh Chalice by Will Fogarty,  a self-taught chainsaw sculptor living in Hospital, Co. Limerick. It was commissioned by the Limerick Greenway and  crafted by a chainsaw on a tree to the left of the Station House.

Next stop was the Astro Turf facility at the rear of St Molua’s School for the dignitaries to visit. The weather took a turn for the worse with rain and strong wind, but the show went ahead. David Woulfe, Chairman of the ADRSC, welcomed the attendance and thanked all the people involved in putting the facility in place. Fr Michael Noonan, The Diocesan Office, the local residents,  Din Form builders, local professional people who gave their services for free, and the members of the ADRSC committee.

The Minister spoke about the grant awarded and her promotion of rural communities. The involvement of the two Junior Ministers and the 34 million that Limerick has received since 2020. Fr Michael Noonan blessed the facility and the Minister and Mayor with assistance from two school children unveiled the plaque on the dressing room wall. Alongside it are plaques dedicated to Denis Corbett and Jack Bett Enright two GAA club members who won All Ireland medals.  A tour of the facility and a meet and greet followed with lots of photos taken at both venues.

The death has taken place of John McMahon, Creeves, Askeaton, peacefully, at St John’s Hospital, Limerick on Sunday, April 3. Reposing at Madigan’s Funeral Home, Shanagolden on Tuesday, April 5, from 6pm  with removal  later to St Mary’s Church Askeaton.  His  Funeral Mass  was celebrated on Wednesday at 12 noon with burial immediately afterwards in Kilbradran Cemetery. Sympathy is extended to his wife Breda, daughter Elaine, sons Ciaran, Bernard, James, Shane and  Fergal, sister Kathleen, brother David, son in law, daughters in law, grandchildren, nieces, nephews, cousins, neighbours  and friends. May he rest in Peace.

The West Limerick GAA Board  recently presented a cheque for €1,000 to Owen Hayes, St Kieran’s GAA Club  to go to the Cahermoyle Ukrainian Appeal Fund.

The Easter ceremonies schedule for Coolcappa/Kilcolman is: Holy Thursday, Mass in Kilcolman at 7.30pm, with Adoration until 9pm.Good Friday,  Passion of Christ in Coolcappa at 3pm. Stations of the Cross in Kilcolman at 8pm. Holy Saturday, Mass in Coolcappa at 6pm. Easter Sunday, Mass in Kilcolman at 10am.

The Easter ceremonies for Ardagh/Carrigkerry is:  Holy Thursday, Mass in Ardagh at 7.30pm. Good Friday, Passion of our Lord in Carrigkerry at 3pm. Stations of the Cross in Carrigkerry at 6.30pm and in Ardagh at 7.30pm. Holy Saturday. Mass in Ardagh at 9pm. Easter Sunday, Mass in Carrigkerry at 11am.

Limerick were defeated by Offaly  by 3-12 to 4-4 in the final of  Division 4 of the National Ladies Football League  played at Croke Park on Sunday, April 3. The Old Mill club were represented by Sophie Hennessy  goals, Captain Róisín Ambrose midfield (0-1),  Iris Kennelly (2-1)  at corner  forward and  Cathy Ambrose  was a substitute.

St Kieran’s were defeated by Templeglantine 2-20 to 2-11 in the West Intermediate Hurling League at Templeglantine on Saturday, April 2. The annual Con and Anne Kirby Memorial greyhound stake sponsored by JP and Noreen McManus continues at Limerick Greyhound Stadium.  The St Kieran’s greyhound, Da Bold Freddie, has qualified for the quarter finals to be run on Saturday, April 9.

Club players Craig MacInnes and Sean Ryan are part of the Limerick Under 20 football contesting the Munster Championship. panel. Fionn Gleason is part of the Limerick Sarsfield panel competing in the Celtic Challenge hurling competition. Mikey Kelly is in the Under 15 football panel.

Creeves Celtic defeated Shannonside 5-4 on penalties after a 1-1 draw to progress to  round 3 of the Riedy Cup at Newbridge on Sunday, April 3. In Division 1 of the Desmond Ladies League  Creeves Celtic defeated Feenagh 3-0 at home, with goals from Rachel Naughton, Dymphna O’Brien and Shannon Ruttle.

Congratulations to Edel O’Sullivan, Athea who won the solo singing event at the  Munster Scór Na Nóg finals in Cashel on Sunday, April 3. She is a daughter of Carrigkerry natives Sandra Ahern and Noel O’Sullivan.  Best wishes to Edel in the All Ireland final in Killarney.

The Ardagh Development Association and Saint Kieran’s GAA joint weekly lottery   draw took place on Monday, April 4. The numbers drawn were 2, 3, 8 and 29, and there was  no  winner of the €7,100 Jackpot. Congratulations  to the five lucky dip winners who received  €40 each:  John Loughnane, Askeaton, c/o Pat Molyneaux, Martin Mulcahy, Killard (Online), Ita Dineen c/o Denis Greaney, Tommy Greaney c/o Denis Greaney, Paul Moriarty Liskilleen (Online). Next Monday night’s jackpot will  be €7,200. People can play online using club force on the club’s Facebook page, with 6pm on Monday evening the deadline. The tickets are also on sale at the usual outlets, and all support will be appreciated.

Congratulations to Ann O’Gorman, Churchtown, Newcastle West, who won €450 in the West Limerick 102fm 50/50 draw, held on Friday, April 1. The tickets cost €2 or 3 for €5 and they are available from volunteers, in local shops, (including Moloney’s Carrigkerry, and Denis Greaney’s Shop Ardagh) or from the radio station. All support will be appreciated. The station can be contacted at 069-66200 if people have news of interest to the West Limerick area.

Tony Noonan, Templeglantine  has been in touch with this year’s final total collected from their Christmas Lights Display. They collected €28,600 for their chosen charity’s, which was the best sum in over 20 years.

As we approach Easter Sunday, we are reminded of the Trócaire Lenten appeal to help communities in the developing world. The Russian invasion of Ukraine has  rightly dominated the news headlines this Lent, but the Trocaire appeal is also merited. Trócaire boxes are still available in the local church porches, if people missed out on collecting them at the start of Lent. We are asked to put some money into them, if possible, to help family’s this year  in Zimbabwe.  The boxes can be returned to the churches this weekend and all support will be greatly appreciated.

Team Limerick Clean-Up (TLC) is set to take place across Limerick City and County on Good Friday, April 15. The registration is open for the 7th edition of the largest one day clean up in Ireland. After a two year break due to Covid restrictions groups or individuals are urged to sign up on www. and help make this year the best ever. Ardagh Development meet at Ardagh Hall at 9.30am to collect rubbish from the roads and surrounding areas and all help will be appreciated.