By Tom Aherne

EILEEN COLLINS: The death took place of Eileen Collins (nee O’Grady) suddenly at her residence Reerasta, Ardagh on Sunday, January 8. She was predeceased by her husband Denis. Eileen’s remains arrived at St. Molua’s Church, Ardagh for 11.30am Requiem Mass on Wednesday, January 11. Fr. Michael Noonan concelebrated  with Fr. Michael O’Shea and Canon James Ambrose. She was laid to rest afterwards in the local cemetery. Sympathy to her son Kieran, daughters Jackie and Rosario, grandsons Lee, Aidan, Niall, sisters Kathleen, Birdie, nieces, nephews, extended family members and friends. May she rest in Peace.

Eileen came from the Cappagh area and was a great community person. A talented lady she was involved in several organisations including Ardagh Development Association, Ardagh Voluntary Housing, church flowers etc, over the years. With her late husband Denis and family they ran a filling station and shop business from their home for many years during the 1980s/1990s. She will be sadly missed by all who knew her.

ASK JOE: Mary Kury from Ardagh featured on the Joe Duffy Radio 1 programme on Saturday, January 11.  It was a discussion about returning treasures to the original areas where they were found. Mary put forward the case for the Ardagh Chalice and two other speakers for the Derrynaflann Chalice. Pat Wallace from Limerick, a former employee with the National Museum, opposed their reasons. The kite has flown on this discussion as back in 1993 on the 125th anniversary of the discovery of the Ardagh Chalice, the Ardagh Development Association  went to great lengths to get the Chalice  down from Dublin for the weekend of their September festival. After negotiations we had to settle for a speaker from the museum who gave an excellent talk on the chalice and a replica that came from the Hunt Museum. Other TV personalities that came to Ardagh at that time were Joe Duffy, Donnacha O’Dulaing and Peter Browne. The late  John Joe Kennelly crafted a timber replica of the Ardagh Chalice which was greatly admired at the time. The late Tom Davis was influential in getting Paddy Flanagan’s name on a plaque at the Famine graveyard in Newcastle West.

SOCCER NEWS: Creeves Celtic drew 3-3 away to Breska Rovers in the Desmond Premier Division on Sunday, January 8. Andrew Meade, Adam Kearns and Aaron Gillane scored their goals. In Division 3 Carrig Celtic lost 3-1 away to Ballysteen with Donal Nolan getting their goal.

RETIREMENT WISHES: Betty (King, Carrigkerry) and Johnny Cotter recently retired from running the Top of the Town business in Athea. They were very popular owners and highly regarded within the community. They were generous sponsors to many clubs and organisations over the years. Wishing both good health and happiness in the future.

GREENWAY: Neven Maguire’s Greenway Food Trails programme on RTE this Wednesday, January 18 at 8.30pm, will feature Mary Kury from Ardagh. She will be in conversation with Nevin about the Limerick to Tralee railway. Saturday February 4, 2023 is the 60th anniversary of the last regular passenger train to travel that route. The four small stations  of Kilmorna, Devon Road, Barnagh and Ardagh closed permanently that evening. The four larger stations survived for freight and occasional passenger trains until Abbeyfeale, Newcastle West, and Rathkeale closed in 1975 and Listowel in 1977.

LOTTERY DRAW: The Ardagh Development Association and Saint Kieran’s GAA joint weekly lottery draw took place on Monday, January 9.The numbers drawn were 1,13,18,24, and  there was  no  winner of the €11,000 Jackpot. Congratulations to the five lucky dip winners who received  €40 each, John Murphy, Knockaderry, c/o Neary’s, Joe Carr, c/o Moloneys, Josie Mulcahy, Castlemahon c/o Dawn, Angela Balfe, (Online), David Woulfe Grouse Lodge (Online). Next Monday night’s jackpot will  be €11,100. 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.

SCHOOL ENROLLING: Coolcappa national school is now enrolling for September 2023. They offer a nurturing and caring environment,  small class sizes, state of the art building, dedicated staff, excellent resources, outdoor classroom, school garden, and after school facility. Phone 069- 76493, 083-0140041, Twitter: @coolcappans

COMHALTAS CLASSES: Ardagh/Carrigkerry Comhaltas branch announce that music classes have  recommenced on Tuesday evenings in Ardagh Hall from 7pm to 9pm.  Tuition will be available for the tin whistle, flute, fiddle, accordion, concertina, banjo, bodhran.  Céilí dancing classes take place in Coolcappa Hall on Saturdays from 10-11am. New members are always welcome and check out their Facebook  page for all details.

ARDAGH WALK: The Ireland Lights Up Walk in partnership with Operation Transformation  will start on Wednesday, January 18, from Ardagh Church car park at 7pm sharp. The 6.4kw walk will be along the Greenway towards Rathkeale and a Hi-Viz vest and a light are needed, and all are welcome.

COMMUNITY GAMES: St Kieran’s Community Games AGM will be held in Coolcappa Community Hall on Thursday, January 19. at 8pm. The committee are actively seeking volunteer support to enable them to provide  a wide range of events for the competitors. All support and your attendance will be appreciated.

RAMBLING HOUSE: Ita Mc Quinn Monagea  is holding her next monthly rambling house on Friday, January 20, at the Desmond Complex Newcastle West at 8pm. It is a special charity night for St Gabriel’s Respite Centre Mungret.  All musicians, singers dancers and storytellers are most welcome to attend.

FILM CLUB: Newcastle West Film Club present ”An Cailín Ciíin” in the Desmond Complex Newcastle West on Friday, December 2, at 8pm. Admission is €8 and refreshments are available and all are welcome.

HISTORY TALKS: Rathkeale Historical Society resume their monthly talks following the Christmas break on this Friday, January 20 at 8.30pm in the Community Arts Centre New Line Rathkeale. Tim Dunne will speak about the Businesses of Rathkeale and Newcastle West in the 19th Century.  All are very welcome to the very popular talks held over the winter months.

PARK RUN: The very popular park run is held in the Demesne, Newcastle West on Saturday morning from 9.30am. All are welcome to join in the proceedings.

MEDAL PRESENTATION: The Old Mill Ladies Football Club will hold a medal presentation for Under 6, Under 8 and Under 10 teams, on Saturday, January 21, in Ardagh Community Centre at 5.30pm. Five club players have been selected on Limerick football squads for 2023, Keelin Carr under 14,Cliodhna Heffernan and Caoimhe Byrne, under 16, Méabh Kelly and Paula Ahern for the minor squad. Best wishes to all five for the coming year.

DRAMA DATE: The Loughill/Ballyhahill  drama group, Abha Bhan  Players  will be performing the Buds of Ballybunion by John B Keane in the Tintean Theatre Ballybunion on Saturday January 28, at 7.30pm. The play was performed in Ballyhahill Hall last November to huge acclaim with many people  disappointed due to capacity numbers. For the people who missed out, this is a chance to see it in the very comfortable Tintean Theatre.  The website is now open for bookings at www. A great night out is assured.


Saint Kieran’s GAA Club News

CLUB AGM: St Kieran’s GAA Club held their annual meeting at Ardagh Hall on Friday, January 13, with a good crowd in attendance. Chairman David Woulfe welcomed all  and the various reports and addresses were dealt with during an upbeat and  positive meeting.  Secretary Ivan Neary outlined all the teams progress during the year  in his report.  Vice Chairperson Kieran Madigan outlined the improvement  made by the camogie players in the  club in its first year. They competed in blitz’s and their skill levels rose. Tom Harnett presented a detailed treasurers report which showed a profit on the year’s activities.

During his address  which was comprehensive and detailed, David  touched on the progress of the football, hurling, rounders and  camogie  sections of the club. It was a very busy year on and off the field with the County Junior A Hurling Championship win and progress in Munster the high point. David paid tribute to the very committed volunteers who coached and mentored the teams. The Bord Na Nóg officers were thanked for the work they are doing with the underage players.  All club players who represented  the county and their schools  were thanked. All who sponsored playing gear for club teams and personnel who looked after the playing fields  were thanked.

David also dealt with the distribution of tickets for Limerick’s county matches, thanking  secretary Ivan Neary, for all his work behind the scenes. The Lottery with Ardagh Development Association continued to work well and more people were playing online.  Treasurer Tom Harnett  was thanked  for the huge financial workload  involved in running the club over the past year. Deirdre Ambrose for looking after the membership and Club force. The people who updated matches for the What’s App. group for people unable to attend matches.

The club hosted a vigil for Aishling Murphy and looked after the Ukrainian people who arrived at Cahermoyle House. Participated in the Ireland Light Up walks and held a launch night  to unveil the new pitch development. Attended the Healthy Club briefing and ran another very successful road hurling day. David said that the year ahead would be a challenging one for all competing teams. Gym work will be stepped up for the adult players this year with a coaching officer appointed.  An underage nursery will be created  for the very young players.

Financially it was a good year for the club, who entered 2022 in the red but exited in the black. The numbers in the Limerick Development draw were steady, and € 6,000 was won by members in 2022. All who gave sponsorship and   donated to the new pitch development were thanked. The various club membership rates for 2023 will remain the same , and the online club force is proving very successful.  March 31 is the final date for membership.  All the club officers, development draw promoters,  around the locality were also thanked.   All who assisted and supported the club  in any way during the year were thanked.

Turning to 2023 It is intended  to run  a Last Man standing competition shortly.  The annual Operation Transformation walks will commence on Wednesday  January 18. The Board Na Nóg and Camogie club will  hold their AGMs shortly.  The club are holding a social in the Longcourt Hotel on Saturday March 11. A night at the Oscars will be held in the Devon Inn Hotel on Saturday November 11.

The following  officers were elected to run the club in 2023. Chairman David Woulfe, Vice-Chairman Kieran Madigan, Secretary Ivan Neary,  Ass-Secretary Owen Hayes junior, Treasurer Tom Harnett, Ass-Treasurer Ian Mackessy, PRO Owen Hayes junior, Children’s Officer Deirdre Ambrose,  Irish Officer John Hough. Health and Wellbeing and Covid Officer Aisling Hayes, County Board Delegates David Woulfe and Owen Hayes senior.  The club committee of 21 people was put in place. A number of management teams were appointed with more to be announced later at the club meetings.

David congratulated all the players and partners who got married during the year, those blessed with children. Sympathised with families who suffered bereavements. He looked forward to seeing the injured players back in action later this year. In conclusion he thanked his fellow officers and looked forward with confidence to 2023.