Graveyard’s Collection

Envelopes are being distributed throughout the parish at present. They can be dropped into the Community Council Office or to Athea Credit Union for collection.

Church Sacristan’s Collection

Will be taken up next Sunday, December 4th.

Annual Going Strong Party

The Athea Annual Going Strong Christmas Party will be held at Top of The Town on Wednesday 7th. December with Mass at 12.30 sharp.

Everyone is welcome and age is immaterial!! Names to be in by 1st December by contacting any of the following :

Eileen: 087 9848247

Peggy: 087 9416223

Maireád 087 6407026

A deposit of €5 is required. A great day is assured.

The Way I See It

By Domhnall de Barra

I have had a good reaction to the letter from a concerned citizen about the parking of cars on the footpath from Batt’s Corner up the Abbeyfeale Road. The majority agree with the writer and say they have great difficulty trying to walk on that stretch of pavement due to the parking and they have no alternative but to walk out onto the street which is very dangerous because cars travel down that road well in excess of the speed limit. There was a point made, however, in defence of those parking on the footpath. If everyone parked properly at both sides of the road there would be traffic chaos as there wouldn’t be room for two vehicles to pass each other due to the narrowness of the road. That is a fact. The village of Athea was in existence long before the advent of the motorcar so it is only natural that some streets would not be wide enough to cater for all the cars we have at the moment. Do we have a right to park on the roadside wherever we like or should there be designated parking areas in towns and villages for use by shoppers and those attending social events. It does not take a genius to work out that if you have a big public house and a library that frequently is used almost side by side there is going to be a big demand for parking. The County Council should provide a car park in the village that would then give the option of confining parking to one side of the street only thereby leaving plenty of room for motorists to park in a proper manner and leave the footpaths to pedestrians. The problem is not confined to the Abbeyfeale road. I took a walk around the village the other day and there were plenty of cars parking illegally even in places where there was plenty of room. I saw one man, who uses a walking aid, out in the middle of the road because there was no room on the footpath. This is not right so I appeal to motorists to think before they park and make sure there is enough room left for pedestrians, especially those with prams, buggies, walking aids and wheelchairs and please get onto our local representatives to get the Council to consider a public car park in the village. As regards the speeding, is it time we had ramps inside all the speed limit signs?  I have come across them in many places recently and while they can be a bit of a nuisance they do force drivers to slow down and that can’t be a bad thing. There are a few who drive through the village at excessive speed, especially going over the bridge which can be very dangerous for those coming in the Glin road or pedestrians crossing over to the footbridge. I wonder what all this speed is for. A  motorist overtook me when I was on my way home the other evening just past the Clash road. No sooner had he done that than his brake lights came on because he was turning right to go over Parkanna. I had to come to a stop behind him as he waited for oncoming traffic to pass before he could make his turn. What did he gain by passing me out especially approaching a crossroad?  The difference between travelling at a normal speed and breaking the limit is only a few seconds. How many times have I passed people myself on the way to Abbeyfeale only to find them right behind me at the traffic lights. We could all do with taking life at a slightly slower pace and certainly we need to slow down on the roads. Too many people have died needlessly already.

Last week I was writing about the Comhaltas celebration of 50 years at the Top of the Town on Saturday night last. Well, it turned out to be quite a different occasion to what I was expecting. I had been planning with the committee to make a presentation to Noreen and I had succeeded to keep it a secret but little did I know that the committee were also scheming behind my back to give me an award as well. To say I was taken by surprise is an understatement and it took a while for the embarrassment to go away and when it did I began to appreciate the wonderful honour it was. I have had many awards in my life, both home and abroad, but this is the best of all because it is  given to me by my own people who know me inside out. A sincere thank you to the branch and the committee for honouring both Noreen and myself. I have gone on record as saying it is the best committee I have ever worked with and I have had a few in my time. They don’t leave a stone unturned and are meticulous in their preparations when organising an event. The secret is friendship and a love of our native culture. Athea can be justly proud of the men and women who have worked so hard to preserve and foster the traditions of out forefathers down through the years and there can be no doubt that the banner is being borne by the present members of Comhaltas.  Thanks as well to all the friends and family who turned up on Saturday night to make it such a very, very special occasion and also to the musicians who came from all over West Limerick and North Kerry to join in the entertainment. We even had two young musicians all the way from Australia, grandchildren of the late Jack Mahony from Templeathea who sadly passed away recently. I know Jack would have been a very proud man to see them playing in his home place. I have no doubt he was watching down on us on Saturday night. May he rest in peace.

Noreen and Domhnall Barry, who each received an award in recognition of their services to Athea CCE at their 50th Anniversary celebrations.

Big Session

 Fr. Tony with Noreen & family