Archive for February, 2023



Knockdown Vintage Club … We’re on the Road Again.

Knockdown Vintage Club are on the road again with its Annual Charity Vintage Run taking place on Sunday 26th March 2023.  This year the proceeds are in aid of three very worthy local charities:

Abbeyfeale District Search & Rescue

Friends of St. Ita’s  Community Hospital

Drumcollogher Respite Care Centre

All three charities offer vital services to our community and are well deserving of our support. These charities have impacted on the lives of many families in our community and further afield and it is our privilege to assist them in their endeavours.

Registration will commence at 12 noon in The Knockdown Arms

Light Refreshments will be served from 12 Noon.

The Vintage Club welcomes all Vintage Cars and Vehicles

A raffle will also be held on the day with numerous prizes including

1st Prize: €150.00 Hotel Voucher for The Devon Inn

2nd Prize: €100 Voucher for Brown Joe’s Athea.

3rd Prize: Monster Hamper

4th Prize €100 Voucher from Crown Decorating Centre Newcastle West

And numerous other prizes

Tickets €2 each or 3 for €5.

A special draw for all those who participate will take place immediately after the Runs. An Auction will also take place, and we hope that this too will add to the entertainment.

Big Maggie & John O Sullivan will provide the entertainment between 4 and 6pm.

Since our foundation in 2010 the Club has raised in excess of €50,000 for various charities, and the Club has gone from strength to strength.  This could not have been done without the help of our sponsors, participants and the general public. Your continued generosity is much appreciated. We look forward to welcoming you all on 26th March 2023. Come along for a Fun Day out with all the family.

Contact: Patrick Langan    087 – 2452695   Dave Noonan    087 – 2500938

The Way I See It

By Domhnall de Barra

Just back from a weekend in Liverpool. Noreen and myself went over to visit a great friend of ours, a remarkable lady who came into our lives when we moved from Coventry to Liverpool in early 1970.  I had lived in Coventry for most of the ‘sixties and of course I got involved in the music scene. Through that I met an accordion player from Mayo called Tony O’Toole who used to visit the Irish clubs at the weekend.  Noreen and I got married in February 1970 and we moved to Liverpool straight away because I had got a better job up there.  I didn’t socialise much for the first few months but eventually I called into the Irish Centre  and learned there was a fleadh cheoil on there the following Sunday. I entered the box competition and was lucky enough to win it. That night I was asked to play a few tunes at the centre and when I was finished I saw this beautiful, tall, black-haired woman in her forties coming towards me. She told me that she was Tony O’Toole’s sister, Celia and that he had written to her (as you did back in the day) to tell her I was moving to Liverpool. She said to me “ye will have to come to our house next Sunday, I will kill a cock”. That sense of humour she had hasn’t dissipated over the years and she had a knack of making you completely at your ease. We duly went to the house and met her husband John Kilgallon, another box player who had played with the Liverpool Ceili Band, and their three daughters, Maureen, Eileen and Celia and son Seán who was eight or nine at the time. We immediately felt very much at home as did our son Danjoe who was only a few weeks old and snuggled up in one of Celia’s fur coats.  Celia and John were Danjoe’s godparents and the visits to the house became a regular thing. It was a house of music and laughter with people coming and going all the time. This last weekend we sat with Celia as she recalled many of the good times and some of the not so good we had experienced.  She will be 101 years of age this April and still looks after herself. Members of her family who live locally call in and she has a cleaner who comes a couple of times a week but she does all her own cooking and washing and has the place clean before the cleaner arrives!  Unfortunately she has lost her hearing so communicating with her can be difficult at times. A pad and pencil helps but somehow Noreen could get through to her when looking directly at her. She is blessed  with a great memory and loves to recall funny things that happened when she was a young girl in Ireland and afterwards when she emigrated. In the early part of the last century, living on the western seaboard of Ireland wasn’t easy. There was no employment so most of the young people went to England or America to make a living. Sometimes whole families moved to make a better life for themselves. Celia has some great funny stories about characters that came into her life over the years.  She remembers one about here brother Joe who played a prank on some of the neighbours who used to come rambling to their house at night. They had acquired a radio when they were very scarce and of course was a novelty to everyone. Joe, being a bit of an engineer, connected a wire to the back of the radio and through a hole in the wall into the bedroom at the other side and attached a mike so that the radio acted as a speaker. In those days the radio would only be turned on for the news, to spare the battery. At 10 pm the news was turned on but instead of the radio announcer it was Joe’s voice disguised that those in the kitchen heard. He proceeded to give fictitious local news including the following: “a big shark was washed ashore last night and ate a pit of spuds owned by a local man”. One of the two old boys in the kitchen turned to the other and said: “isn’t that awful. The poor man will have nothing now to feed his family for the Winter.”  I am still laughing at some of the incidents she recalled as we sat and shared a couple of drinks. It is difficult to imagine the changes she has seen in her more than 100 years from the birth of the Irish state, with all the problems that created, through two world wars and the Irish Civil War. She was born into a time that had no electricity, tap water, motor cars, radios, phones or televisions. Though she has lived in England for the best part of her life she never lost one bit of her beautiful Mayo accent and she still uses the odd Irish word, especially when she is talking about the place she came from, Thullabawn, the Silver Strand, west of Louisburg. We have had the pleasure of visiting her there on many occasions over the years and it is one of the nicest places on Earth. It is such a pity that people like Celia had to leave their beautiful homes and cross the seas but, if she hadn’t, we would never have met her and had the pleasure of her friendship for such a long time. Please God it won’t be too long before we listen to a few more stories like the following:  There was a man in Liverpool who went by the nickname “Red Nose Kelly” though never called it to his face.  He was in the pub one day when a young man came in and was looking curiously at him. After a while he went up to him and asked him if he was Red Nose Kelly. He stared back at him and said: “if there was as much money spent on your education as what it cost to make this nose red, you might have better manners.”

St. Bartholomew’s Church Athea

Mass Intentions next weekend Sun Feb 26th at 11am.

Jim & Eily Kiely and their son Pat (Knocknagorna).  Tom Casey & Stephen Casey.

Ministers of the Word:  Maireád O’Donovan & Patsy Hayes.

Ministers of the Eucharist:  Mary O’Donoghue & Mary Hunt                                                      Weekday Mass this week:  Tuesday Feb 21st and Ash Wednesday Feb 22nd at 9.30 am and Wednesday evening at 7pm. Eucharistic Adoration and the Devine Mercy Chaplet after mass on Tuesday morning.

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

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

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

A new Candle Shrine area has been installed just inside the main front door of the church.

A selection of Mass Bouquet Cards is available through the Sacristy/Parish Office – the list

includes mass cards for the dead and the living, Get well, Special Occasion, Exams, Communion, Confirmation.







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Kathleen’s Corner-21/02/2023

By Kathleen Mullane

Amy and Shane Tierney of Templeathea would like to sincerely thank the Landowners in the parish for allowing the North Kerry Harriers to go through their land during the Hunt on Sunday last. There was a great turn out on the day and the weather added to the event.

Afterwards it was soup and sandwiches at White’s Bar and thanks is extended to Gerard for hosting the food. In all a very enjoyable day was had by one and all, both participants and onlookers with the Huntsman and the entourage always looking forward to the Hunt in ATHEA. Well done to all.

Christmas is not long gone and here we are almost into Lent in preparation for Easter. As I write my few lines this Monday night, we have Pancake Tuesday tomorrow. Nowadays you can have every sort of a pancake any day of the week. In days gone by it was a way of clearing out the eggs flour etc before the Giving up of treats and fasting from goodies, sweets etc for the 6 weeks and 4 days of Lent. Nowadays there is more encouragement rather than giving up something — to take on something. We are encouraged to help people that may need help maybe getting groceries or a bit of company  now and again. A visit or phone call to someone living alone would be a nice gesture. I wonder would our young people mind giving up being on their phones -Tablets for a time each day, sure whatever one thinks themselves it’s a good thing to take on and makes one feel good in themselves, and you know what, it will be time for the Easter Eggs  before we know it.

Well wasn’t the Play such a laugh and so well done to the Cast for the amount of time and energy they put into learning their Lines. And all those who each year work tirelessly behind the scenes great credit is due to them. They say LAUGHTER is the Best Medicine and it’s very true. Someone was saying lately that all the CHARACTERS  are gone that used to be in every Parish in days gone by and well do I remember all of them  when my mother and father had The Top Of The Town. A book could be written about them, it’s a pity they weren’t all on Video that would be a Laugh no doubt.

The new thing I heard recently was asked by someone _ – When did you LOL’D, I had never heard of it,  it’s another lingo being used. It means when did you Laugh Out Loud. And it said 42 per cent in the UK Hadn’t.

We have all been asked to Recycle our Pre-Loved clothes to protect the environment and you are reminded when you are doing your Spring Clean Out  that there are several Charity Shops in our nearby towns of Abbeyfeale, Listowel and Newcastle West who would be delighted to accept  your bits and pieces, and no doubt you will be amazed at what you will find,  they are a treasure chest and you are helping to raise funds for the Vincent De Paul, the Elderly and those with Sight problems. A lot of our young people are great to buy their bits in Charity Shops thereby helping the environment.

Thought For The Week:- You cannot depend on your eyes when your Imagination is out of Focus.


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Knockdown News-21/02/2023

By Peg Prendeville

Well Done to Athea Drama group on their successful staging of The Anniversary. It was a good laugh which we all need from time to time. A very deserving tribute to Amina Parkes, one of the founder members was included in their programme, written by Tom O’Keeffe on behalf of all the members.

A large crowd attended the Senior Citizens party in the Hall in Ballyhahill last Sunday, This was the first after a two year break due to Covid. A lovely dinner was served including drinks, this was followed by music and dance. It was a great opportunity to meet up with parishioners we may not have met in a while. Thanks to the Mohernagh Wrenboys who organised the day.

Congratulations to Owen and Sandra O’Brien on the birth of their first baby, Bonnie, last Sunday. Owen is one of the younger members of the Abha Bhán Players. Of course this makes Norma Nolan, another member of the group, a Nana for the first time. So there is great excitement all round.

It is nice to see new neighbours moving into the area recently. I have no names but a welcome is extended to those who have moved into Ruddle’s house in Turraree, Barret’s in Knockdown and Liam Enright’s in Clounleharde.


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