Archive for January, 2023


By Damien Ahern

2023 Membership

Athea GAA Membership for 2023 is now open online through Club Force. Player / Track User / Student / Nursery / Club Draw etc options can now be purchased by following the link below, or by searching for ‘Athea GAA’ on Club Force.  A 10% discount will be offered until March 1st 2023 by using the code 10Athea23 during checkout. Please contact any member of the committee for assistance. Thanks to everyone for your support.…

Club Draw Results

The final Club Draw (Draw 5) for 2022 took place on January 14th at the Club House. Congratulations to the following winners;

  1. €500 – Ellie O’ Connor Perth, Australia
  2. €300 – Maurice Ahern, Coole East
  3. €200 – Gary O’Keeffe, Laois
  4. €100 – Maurice & Betsy Stack, Upper Athea
  5. €100 – Denis McEnery, Loughill
  6. €100 – Margaret Collins, Lower Athea.

Thanks to everyone who supported our Club Draw in 2022. The proceeds from this draw allows us to fund running costs and to reduce the amount of our loan. Tickets for our 2023 Draw can now be purchased online through Club Force with a 10% discount offered up until March 1st 2023.


The U13 Footballers have started training early with a workshop on Fundamental Movement Training delivered last week. It’s looking like it will be an active season for our U13 Footballers for 2023.

Athea Ladies

Well done to Meave Murphy and Geraldine Carmody in their first outing with Limerick  U14s Vs  Cork recently. Wishing them and their teammates well in the months ahead. Also well done to Grace Hunt who was part of the Limerick U16 team that played Carlow in a recent challenge Well done to Maeve Murphy and Geraldine Carmody in their first outing with Limerick  U14s Vs  Cork recently. Wishing them and their teammates well in the months ahead. Also well done to Grace Hunt who was part of the Limerick U16 team that played Carlow in a recent challenge





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Athea Drama Group

Athea Drama Group take to the boards with this year’s production “The Anniversary” on February 9th, 11th, 12th, 16th, 18th  & 19th of February.

Booking lines open.  087 6926746

Preferably by Text or Whats App.

Athea Golf Society

The A.G.M. Of Athea Golf Society takes place on Monday night next, Jan. 30th., at 8pm in the Library. It is important that as many members as possible attend to discuss the future of the society. Venues have been arranged for the coming season with some very good courses on the list. This will also be a prize-giving night for those who  won prizes at Dromoland, Ballyheague and Charleville. We look forward to a good turnout.

Athea Church Notices

Mass Intentions next weekend Sun Jan 29th at 11am  Joe Brouder.  Margaret & Timothy O’Donohue and their daughter Margaret Slowey and her husband Gerald.  Martin Rigg, Jonathon Dutton and all deceased members of the Rigg & Dutton families and Rev. David Tuohy S.J.   James & Michael Dalton (Coole West). Patrick (Patie) Enright, his mother Hannah & sister Nora.
Ministers of the Word:  Tom O’Keeffe & Angela Cafferky.

Ministers of the Eucharist:  Mary Dalton & Angela Brouder O’Byrne

Weekday Masses this week

Tuesday  morning at 9.30am followed by Eucharistic Adoration and the Devine Mercy Chaplet  and Thursday evening at 7pm.

All masses are streamed live on https://www,

Baptisms on the 4th Sunday of the month at 12noon. Next baptism course on Tues Feb 14th.

Parish Office: Mon-Fri 11am-1pm. Call 087-3331459 or email [email protected]

Athea CFR AGM The AGM of Athea Community First Responders will take place on Wed 25th

January at 8pm in Con Colbert Hall. Everyone welcome.

Philip Kearney, Shanagolden with his family after he was part of the Celtics basketball team who won the national U-18 final in Tallaght defeating Templeogue 79-53. Philip (6’ 8”) trained in the Memorial Hall, Athea, for a few years before being drafted into the Celtics at the beginning of the basketball year.

Needless to say his Grandparents in Gortnagross, Timmy and Nancy Woulfe, are overjoyed at Philip’s success.






The Way I See It

By Domhnall de Barra

I am writing this today, Monday, so I do not know what is going to transpire in the Dáil tomorrow when Paschal Donoghue is going to make another statement on his election costs etc. but, up to now, I must admit to being more than disappointed with the opposition and their baying for blood. On the first day back from the Christmas break, Dáil time was taken up with this controversy despite the fact that people are suffering for hours on trolleys in our hospitals and the housing crisis is at an all time high, not to mention the cost of living. Don’t get me wrong, I am no lover of Paschal or Fine Gael but I think he is a good politician who has done great work in his various portfolios and is very well respected in Europe. If he was guilty of some serious wrongdoing I’d say something but the whole thing is about declaring what is a pilfering amount of money in the grand scheme of things, to do with people getting paid to put up election posters. Politicians in the opposition benches are all too ready to jump up and down and cry “foul” but we all know how the system works. I know plenty of “volunteers” who have worked for various election candidates over the years, putting up and taking down posters, who received a brown envelope when the job was done; no paper trail, no questions asked. If there was an omission of a small amount on Pascal’s declaration of expenses there should be some sanction but he certainly should not be hounded out of office so, please opposition, grow up and realise there is nothing to see here. While on the subject of election posters, isn’t it time they were banned altogether. Going through towns and villages at election time is like doing the stations of the cross with saintly candidates looking down from their  perch on the  lamp posts. To be honest it is an insult to the intelligence to think that we will be swayed by how a person looks from the lofty position they hold for a few weeks. There is also the green problem with all this paper being used when we do not have enough trees in the world.  There has to be a better way for candidates to get their messages across than trying to look like film stars. Most of them are not as good looking as they think.

We are supposed to live in a bilingual society. Irish is the first official language but most of us use English, or a version of it, in our daily communications. All official documents have to be in both languages and the same goes for road signs etc.  I have no problem with that but I do not like the “civil service” Irish that is to be seen all over the country at the moment. This was brought home to me recently when I was attending clinics in the Regional Hospital with Noreen. The Acute Bone Fracture Clinic has three sections A, B and C called “zones”. They, of course are on a notice board and also have  an Irish version so Zone A  is also Zón A. Now, when I learned Irish, many moons ago, one of the first things I learned was that the Irish alphabet has less letters than the English one. There is no J, K, Q,  V, W, X, Y  or Z so what genius came up with the word “Zón”. Why use the word zone in English anyway. Do we have to ape everything that America has to offer?  The failure of those who decide Irish translations and terms for new words is widespread throughout the country.  Just down the road from my house there are two road signs pointing to Knocknasna. One is for the townland and the other is for Knocknasna School. On one the Irish version is Cnoc na Sná and on the other it is Cnoc na Sionnach. I have no idea where the latter came from but surely somebody must have spotted the signs and realised that there can’t be two versions of the one name. Walking along the greenway from Abbeyfeale there is a sign telling you are entering the townland of Ballybehy, or Ballaugh as we know it. The Irish version is down as “Bealach Beithe”. It should of course be “Bealach na mBeithe”. They changed the name of Dingle from Daingean Uí Cuais to An Daingean, which has no meaning at all. Likewise they got rid of Nás na Rí (Naas) and replaced it with “An Nas” another name that means nothing.  I could give several more examples that show how little our native language is appreciated by those charged with its official use. It was bad enough for the British to butcher most of our beautiful placenames and leave us with meaningless drivel but it is hard to take when the present culprits are representing our own government. Our traditional names should be preserved because they are descriptive of our surroundings and they should never be changed or diluted.

While I am in the mood for complaining, I notice that there is going to be a sharp increase in the cost of alcoholic drink in pubs in the near future. This time it is the breweries and distillers who are raising their prices but of course there is an add on for government tax. This is happening at a time in Ireland when rural pubs in particular are closing because of a change in social habits and the knock-on effects of the Covid lockdown. The local pub has played a big part in Irish society and, yes, some people did drink a bit too much but the vast majority enjoyed their couple of pints and had the craic with friends and neighbours for a couple of hours.  For some who live in isolated areas, it was their only social outlet and, putting it plainly, it kept them sane. By raising the costs, pubs are going to be forced out of the market because there is only so much spare money to go around and people will have to cut back or give it up altogether. They are killing the goose that laid the golden egg and I’m afraid the future does not look bright.  Hope I am wrong.

Thank You

A sincere Thank You to all the individuals, clubs and associations who made presentations to us on the occasion of our retirement from managing the Top of the Town. Your thoughtfulness and generosity took us completely by surprise and we are so grateful to you all. It has been a pleasure meeting you all and sharing some of your celebrations over the years.

Kind regards to all,

Betty and Johnny Cotter




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Knockdown News-24/01/2023

By Peg Prendeville

Recently I visited East Grinstead in West Sussex, UK, to visit my sister Gerardine, who resides there. Sadly, her lovely husband Barry passed away suddenly before Christmas. It is a lovely town, similar in size and population to Tralee, 27 miles south of London city. It was nice to walk around the town and learn a few historic facts. The Greenwich Meridian line runs through the town and my sisters and I took great pleasure in stepping on the marking stone with a leg on each hemisphere of the globe, both Eastern and Western. Because this line goes straight through the middle of town the belief, among some, is that powerful ley lines intersect with it. The claim is that ley lines form a mystical energy grid and so East Grinstead is the home of many and varied religions including Mormons, Jehovahs and Scientologists. Gerardine told me that there are at least sixteen different religions in the town. Winnie the Poo stories are all based around the area of East Grinstead. There is no denying that Winnie the Pooh is a firm childhood favourite for many children and the town proudly boasts the forest that inspired the Hundred Acre Wood. I loved the flight home on a frosty day with a great view over the land from my window seat. But the nearer I came to West Limerick the more cloud and dullness appeared. I was just home before the place turned white with snow so I was lucky.

Our local Abha Bhán Players are gearing up for their final performance of The Buds of Ballybunion in the Tinteán Theatre in Ballybunion on this Saturday night at 7.30 pm. Doors open at 6.30. Tickets are selling steadily so be sure and book your seat as soon as possible by going online to This is your last chance to see the play as there will be no more performances after this. 

But then we have the Athea and Abbeyfeale drama groups to look forward to. I hope to be able to see both.

It was good to hear that there was music back in the Knockdown Arms last weekend and I heard it was like “old times” back there with a large crowd enjoying the entertainment.

It has been ages since I visited the library in Newcastlewest so it was a great surprise, recently, to see the whole place revamped and modernised. Such a transformation. It is hard to believe it is 20 years since I spent two years working there. Libraries are lovely places to visit. I was very impressed with the one in East Grinstead in the UK also. Library staff are usually very friendly even if you just want to call for a walk around. Try it sometime.


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