Local Weather

Mostly sunny
real feel: -1°C
wind speed: 0 m/s W
sunrise: 6:34 am
sunset: 6:44 pm


The Blue Tit – A Gardener’s Friend.

Bird Watch Thurles

Not to be mistaken for our native Great Tit or Coal Tit; the Blue Tit is to be found widespread here in Co. Tipperary and throughout Ireland.

Its song, often heard before the bird is actually observed, is quite a high-pitched “tsee-hee-he-hee”.  Found in almost all Irish gardens, eating out where nut and seed feeders are located, they can be easily identified by their green back, yellow belly, a blue cap, with blue wings and tail. Their white cheeks display a dark line through the eye area. Its beak is short and stubby and its leg colour is also a bluish-grey.

Music “Puppet on a String”, composed by Phil Coulter / Bill Martin

Surely the monkey of the bird world; the Blue Tit is exceptionally acrobatic, easily hanging upside-down on branches to peck and foraging for insects.  It will often team up with other Tit species and Tree-creepers and are happy to use a nesting box if one is provided and suitably positioned.

The Blue Tit survives mainly on small insects, but also seeds and will readily use peanut feeders and take scraps from bird tables. They make their nests usually in cavities in stone walls or in hollow trees but have been known to make their homes in pipes or damaged letterboxes.

Note: Never feed peanuts to birds during their breeding season as a newly born hatchling can easily choke when being fed by its parents.

Quality nest boxes can be obtained from O’Driscolls Garden Centre, Mill Road, here in Thurles [(0504) 21636], and right now is the time to install same.

Do remember one important fact; the diameter of the hole in a Blue Tit nesting box should be 2.5cm in Diameter, any larger or smaller aperture, will be most often bypassed.


Which Are You, “All Wired Up” Or A “Palette Prisoner”?

Junk Kouture is all about creating fashion from recyclable materials of every sort. Its purpose is to encourage young future designers, in second level institutions, to create striking couture designs and impressive works of wearable art, from simple everyday junk that would normally find its way into our rubbish tips.

So, how popular is this competition? Well try to obtain a ticket for the Southern Regional Final in Limerick on March 9th next, and you will find the Venue is fully ‘Sold Out’.

This year once again a total of 6 young creative designers from Transition Year at the Ursuline Convent Secondary School in Thurles have taken part in the ‘National Junk Kouture Competition 2018’, sponsored by Bank of Ireland (BOI).

It is no secret that the annual National Junk Kouture competition aims to inspire and ignite passion in young teenagers, while at the same time subtly educating them regarding the importance of recycling and the reusing of what is too often regarded as waste materials.

Over the past number of years, Bank of Ireland’s Junk Kouture event has established itself as the premier recycling fashion competition for teenagers throughout Ireland and Northern Ireland; and in 2015, extended its creative platform, further afield; to the shores of Scotland.

Featured here are just two of the Ursuline Convent’s very imaginative, chosen dress designs, entitled “All Wired Up”, [modelled /designed by Miss Elena Quirke and design aided by Miss Alannah O’Donoghue and Miss Saoirse Quirke] ; and  “Palette Prisoner”, [modelled and designed by Miss Benita Wrochna and design aided by Miss Kayleigh Fogarty and Miss Kathelyn Egan.]

Congratulations! “Super designs and we wish all students taking part at the Ursuline Convent Secondary School, including those not featured here, the very best of luck”.


Storm Emma Halts LIT Thurles Games Fleadh 2018

LIT Thurles Campus

Games Fleadh 2018, which was schedules to take place at LIT Thurles Campus tomorrow, (Wednesday, February 28th, 2018), has been postponed until Thursday March 22nd, 2018, courtesy of expected blizzard “Storm Emma”.

The organisers of this popular all-island games design and development event, have reviewed the weather forecasts over the past 24 hours, and have decided to postpone the 15th Games Fleadh in the interest of commuter safety. A Yellow weather warning for several counties, including Tipperary, has now come into effect with Met Éireann expected to issue a Red weather warning in the next days or two.

Game Design and Development degree lecturer at LIT, Dr Liam Noonan stated, “The key issue for the committee is ensuring that all visiting teams, judges, sponsors, schools etc can make it safely to Thurles for the 15th Games Fleadh. The weather warnings over the last few days left us with concerns as to the well being of those travelling to this popular  event. We therefore have taken the decision to postpone the event for a few weeks until March 22nd, when we look forward to welcoming once again students, parents and those with an interest in game design and development, to this free event.”

Weather experts have predicted a polar vortex will blitz Ireland with its worst snowfall in 36 years; to materialise over the coming days, with up to 65cm of snowfall expected to fall on higher ground across the county between Tuesday night and Friday.

If you would like to track the expected “Storm Emma” blizzard over the coming days simply click HERE courtesy windy.com.


Catherine O’Connor – A long Way From Tipperary

A Leader Of Irish Girl Guides Recalls Her Five Years In India

Reporter Tom Ryan

This year’s World “Thinking Day” (22nd February last) – a day when Girl Guides celebrated their international friendships; had special significance for a Thurles Irish Girl Guide Leader.

It was the first time in five years that Catherine O’Connor, formerly of Cathedral Street, Thurles, Co. Tipperary, had celebrated that event in Ireland. For the past five years she has celebrated with Girl Guides from around the world at Sangam World Guiding Centre in Pune, that sprawling city in the western Indian state of Maharashtra, India; in her role as Deputy World Centre Manager.

World “Thinking Day” is a day when Guides across the globe give thanks for the international friendships they enjoy through the Guiding movement and raise money to deliver life-changing opportunities for girls in developing countries. This year’s World “Thinking Day” theme was ‘Impact’ and the Irish 12,000 Girl Guide membership joined with 10 million Girl Guides and Girl Scouts across the globe, to celebrate the
impact that Guiding has on them and that they, in turn, have on their local communities and the wider world.

Catherine, who is a Leader with Thurles Senior Branch (Senior Branch Irish Girl Guides are those aged from 14-30 years) and a Community Youth Worker with Youth Work Ireland Tipperary, says, “Everything we do in Girl Guiding has an impact on our lives and the lives of people around us. My own life has been hugely impacted by Girl Guiding since joining at age seven. By taking part in relevant, exciting and fun activities our members experience positive change within themselves. As they develop different skills such as communication, collaboration, creativity, commitment and citizenship, they get motivated to make a positive change in the community and wider world. Hence, Girl Guiding impacts individually and collectively.”

Catherine’s time in India was life-changing. “What an amazing country! From the colours, the noise, the festivals, the vibrancy, the hustle and bustle and the warmth of the people, it was a real honour calling this country my home,” she says.

“A big honour for me was getting to represent the Irish Girl Guides and when I got to see the Irish flag flying high at the opening ceremony of the 107 events that happened during my time at Sangam. There was lots of fun and laughter when I attempted to teach Irish dancing at international nights and special memories of enjoying Tayto sandwiches, while watching and explaining Moone Boy with the Sangam family.”

“During my time at Sangam I got to meet over 5,000 Girl Guides and Girl Scouts from all around the world! I also got to work closely with 13 other international staff, 36 Indian staff and volunteers in training from the local community. (Some 71 volunteers and 125 interns were community programme participants). So on a daily basis I got to experience the true friendship and sisterhood of global Guiding and have such interesting conversations, learning so much about other cultures. I am so privileged to have friends I can now visit around the world; from Australia, Chile, Costa Rica, Canada, Japan, Kenya, Nepal, Rwanda, Slovenia and Sweden, to name but a few places.”

Cate considered herself very lucky to have been part of Sangam’s 50th birthday celebrations, from the early planning stages in March 2013 right through to the big day on 16th October 2016, when 1000 plus friends from around the global and local community joined in with the Sangam camp-site for a massive celebration. She was delighted to discover that “amazing, wonderful, exciting things can can happen when you’re brave enough to try and take the chance on new and sometimes scary opportunities”.

She continues, “By getting on the plane on 19th July 2012, just days after Irish Girl Guides’ international camp CAMP 101, despite being so nervous, anxious, doubting myself and so tired; I got to experience so
much from the kindness of strangers who are now lifelong friends; to being able to call the amazing country of India my other home;  to having dared myself to do all of the following, from driving a
rickshaw and scooter, trying Bollywood dancing, hanging upside down in an ariel yoga hammock, abseiling off the Sangam water tower, to travelling solo in India, including taking an overnight sleeper bus and finding my way around Delhi train station at midnight.

This all happened because I took that first step to apply! So I would encourage you to BE BRAVE when new opportunities come your way, just GO FOR IT!”


Bus Shelter Being Sought For Two-Mile-Borris

Local Littleton / Two-Mile-Borris Correspondent Mr Gerry Bowe Report:

With so much inclement weather having being experienced in recent months; waiting for buses in the village of Two-Mile-Borris has become somewhat of a major ordeal for computers of all ages.

Some twenty-five schoolchildren are presently forced to congregate in the open twice daily to use school transport. On Friday’s some fifteen adults, including many old age pensioners must wait for rural transport in similar circumstances, with a minimum of six people on other week days.

The rural transport service is provided by Kavanagh’s of Urlingford, whose facility is greatly appreciated, especially by those with no other available means of transport. The Kavanagh service include stops in Urlingford, following a route to Clonmel, operating a twice daily service.

School transport, also greatly appreciated, conveying students in particular to schools in Thurles is presently being provided by Jerry Ryan Coaches in Thurles. Under the present scenario pupils find themselves often sitting through the day, in wet clothing, due to a lack of basic shelter.

Sites available and indeed suitable for the erection of a bus shelter, have now been identified in Two-Mile-Borris village.

It is now hoped that with the support of local Councillors and Transport Infrastructure Ireland (T.I.I), swift action will be taken to advance an obvious solution with regard to this ongoing issue.