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Niamh Kennedy Tipperary Takes Title “Miss Ireland”


The very lovely Miss Niamh Kennedy, Portroe, Nenagh representing Miss Tipperary, has taken the coveted title of “Miss Ireland,” surpassing 33 other beauty queens from around the country.

The event which took place at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Santry, Dublin, last night saw the classically trained 20-year-old ballerina who currently enjoys works as a waitress, go forward to represent Ireland at the Miss World Pageant in Washington D.C. on December 19th next.

On left, pictured L-R; Miss Aoife McGrane (First Runner Up); Miss Niamh Kennedy chosen “Miss Ireland 2016” and Miss Leanne Gray (Second Runner Up), at the Miss Ireland 2016 final last night. (Picture Courtesy Mr Brian McEvoy).

Part of her prize last night, included a modelling contract and a professional photo-shoot. This year’s pageant saw for the first time no exhibition featuring swimwear; instead a talent section was introduced into proceedings, which saw Miss Kennedy showcase a very fine singing voice.

TV3’s Elaine Crowley and pageant organiser and stylist Brendan Marc Scully hosted last night’s event, with singer Karl Day providing the entertainment.  Judges in attendance on the night included Julian Benson, Bellamianta Tan CEO Linda Mc Namee, Stylist Sonja Mohlich, Miss Ireland organiser Sean Montague, together with former winners Jessica Hayes and Anne Marie Gannon.

Every success Niamh from all here in Co. Tipperary, we will be watching your progress with immense pride.


Tipperary Crystal – New Sponsors Of Rose of Tralee

Newbridge Silverware have stepped down, after more than a decade of Sponsorship of the Rose of Tralee Festival.

Quick of the mark and now taking their place, come the new lead sponsor; Tipperary Crystal, whose current owner is businessman Robbie Scanlan of Allied Imports and who took over the company back in 2011.

‘Tipperary Crystal’, today an Irish design legend, has over the years become synonymous with excellent quality, high-end design.


Natural beauty and Thurles native, Miss Fiona O’Sullivan, attracts attention to a 1909, 7.2 x 2 cylinder, Renault, at the successful Thurles Lions ClubVintage & Classic Car Show’, recently held in the beautiful grounds of St. Patricks College here in Thurles.

The firm now produces a very fine range of fine jewellery and intend to launch an even bigger collection in July 1916. Same will arrive just in time to deck out all contestants in the 2016 Rose Festival, one of whom will be the very lovely, Thurles native Miss Fiona O’Sullivan, daughter of Liz and Declan O’Sullivan from Loughlahan, Thurles.

Miss O’Sullivan was already selected from 22 other beauties from across Co. Tipperary and who will now go forward to represent Tipperary in stage two of three processes, in the all new expanded Tralee festival this August.

Mr Scanlan has stated that, “Tipperary Crystal and the Rose of Tralee are both iconic Irish brands that have a real and tangible sense of modern Ireland.”  However, he is keeping the design of the new Rose of Tralee tiara ‘under his hat’, until August next.


A Picture Is Worth Ten Thousand Words

The game of hurling; considered to be the world’s fastest field sport, is a well known outdoor team sport of ancient Gaelic and Irish origin, today administered by the Gaelic Athletic Association (G.A.A.). The game has prehistoric origins and has been played for over 3,000 years.


Gaile National School Hurling Team (Circa 1927-1930).   Back Row: (L. to R.) John O’Meara, John Flanagan, (Galbertstown), Jim Sause, (Gaile), Teacher Mr. Matthew Kennedy, (Ballytarsna), Timmy Maher, (Killough), Willie Keogh, (Glenbane), Bill Dunne, (Gaile). Middle Row: Paddy Dunne, (Galbertstown), Jack Dunne, (Gaile), Pat O’Meara, (Killough), Dick Murphy, (Regaile), Mick Volkes, (Galbertstown). Front Row: Tommy Ryan, (Gaile) and Philly Ryan, (Peake).

The Hurling team, (picture shown above), was taken at Gaile National School, situated close to the village of Holycross, Thurles, Co. Tipperary and possibly dates back to the end of the 1920’s. In or around this same time period the Victorian English illustrator, Fred R. Barnard was quoting the idiom “A picture is worth ten thousand words.”  Barnard of course was referring to the notion that a complex idea can be conveyed with just a single still photographic image, or that a photograph / sketched / painted image of any subject can often convey its meaning much more effectively than any description written in the form of text.

Look at the picture above. Back then these children wore no protective padding, after all the plastic protective helmet, complete with facial safeguard; today mandatory, did not come in to being for all age groups, until 2010. Note and compare the assortment of Hurley sticks and their evolutionary process compared to what players use today. Note also the bare footed then pupil, seen on right of the back row.

Had this picture been used by outgoing Labour Party candidates in recent Irish General Election posters; it would have conveyed effectively, that Rural Ireland in 2016 is most definitely experiencing “Recovery.”


Thurles Bridge Drops Perfectly Into Place

Sittin’ on the Bridge Below the Town
The nations are rearmin’ and preparin’ for to fight, but a settlement could easily be found
If, instead of at Geneva, they were meetin’ here tonight, sittin’ on the (Thurles) bridge below the town.

[Extract from lyrics by Song Writer Frank O’Donovan, (With apologies.) ]

Thurles Bridge

The new Thurles pedestrian foot bridge was successfully lowered into place at midday today (Friday June 5th 2015).  This spectacle took place in full view of some 50 onlookers of all ages; many whom had gathered from bridge9:00am this morning, to witness this most historic event unfold.

The new bridge’s metal structure, estimated at 40 tons in weight, arrived into the Cathedral town of Thurles at approximately 1.00am this morning, on two separate transport vehicles, which were then manoeuvred into place, side by side, before both on board structures were then bolted together.

The completed single structure was then expertly lifted by crane; to be lowered across the river onto two already pre-prepared mass concrete anchored positions.

Congratulations to all those involved.


Cherry Blossom & A Rose Bloom In Thurles

Alison Brolan

Miss Alison Brolan, Thurles, Co Tipperary, chosen as the 2015 Tipperary Rose of Tralee.

A crowd of some 200 patrons witnessed Miss Alison Brolan from Clongour, Thurles, Co Tipperary, being chosen recently as the 2015 Tipperary Rose of Tralee. The event took place in the luxurious Anner Hotel, latter situated on the Dublin Road, east of the town.

The very beautiful and home loving Alison, is daughter to parents Mrs Colette and Mr Jody Brolan, both natives of the town.  Alison formally a pupil of both the local primary and secondary Ursuline Convent School is a graduate of Trinity College, Dublin, and currently works as a primary school teacher at the Sacred Heart NS, Tallaght, Co Dublin.

Alison, who was selected from amongst nineteen other young ladies, each representing other towns and villages in Co. Tipperary, will now go forward to represent her county in the Irish Regional Rose of Tralee Finals, to be held at the Portlaoise Heritage Hotel from May 28th – 31st, (June bank holiday weekend).

Some six young ladies will now be chosen from some 29 Irish county lovelies taking part; to appear at the International Rose of Tralee finals. This will equate to one lady from each Irish province being selected, together with two ‘wild cards’.

County Tipperary has not reached an International Rose of Tralee Festival since 2011, however Alison, displaying both brains and beauty, offers Tipperary high hopes for 2015.

Our congratulations to Alison and on behalf of the town, we wish her every success for the future.

Alison is pictured here supporting and promoting her favourite local charity ‘Suir Haven,’  latter under the umbrella of North Tipperary Hospice and one of two cancer support centres which promotes and supports the development of hospice and palliative care in North Tipperary.

This organisation supplies specialised equipment, psychological and social support for patients and their families, often regrettably towards the end stages of life and is one of the charities being supported by the “All Ireland Tractor Challenge” which will take place on Sunday May 3rd in Two-Mile-Borris, Thurles, Co Tipperary.  (More details on this latter ‘massive fund-raising event’ in the coming days.)