Local correspondent Mr Gerry Bowe kindly sends us the following report:-
A plaque dedicated to the men and women who fought and those who died in ‘The 1916 Rising’ was officially unveiled at the ‘Munitir na Tire’ (National Organisation Promoting Community Development in Ireland) Hall, Littleton on Saturday last, April 23rd 2016, by Mr Seamus Hanafin, (Councillor & Cathaoirleach, Tipperary County Council).
Mr Gerard Neville, (Sean Treacy Pipe Band), gave his rendition of music, on bagpipes, of all relevant music relating to the history of 1916.
Mr David Brown officially welcomed guests; Mr Hanafin (MCC), and Rev.Fr. George Bourke, Rev.Fr.Joe Tynan (Local Priests) and the many others from the local community, who were in attendance for the unveiling.
Mr Brown formally invited Mr Hanafin to officially unveil the 1916 Plaque, following which Mr Hanafin gave a very interesting and inspiring talk on 1916 and the Irish Proclamation.
The newly unveiled plaque was commissioned to honour the sixteen Patriots who were executed after the 1916 rising, together with the brave men and women who fought and those who died during this troubled period in our Irish history. It is especially dedicated to all those from Co. Tipperary or with Tipperary connections who died; those who fought and those who were ready to fight and later went on to give their lives for freedom and independence in later years, which we as Irish people enjoy today.
Fr. Bourke then read prayers in both Irish and English; blessing the Plaque and recited that wonderful poem; now a hymn; “I see His Blood upon the rose” by executed Irish nationalist, poet, journalist, leader of the 1916 Easter Rising, and signatory of the 1916 Irish Proclamation (Easter Proclamation), Joseph Mary Plunkett.
It should be noted that following the surrender in 1916, Joseph Mary Plunkett, aged 28, was held in Kilmainham Gaol, where he faced a court martial. Seven hours before his execution by firing squad, he was married in the prison chapel to his sweetheart Grace Gifford. Grace’s sister, Muriel, was married to Thomas MacDonagh, a native of Cloughjordan, Co. Tipperary and Joseph Plunkett’s best friend; former who was also executed for his role in the Easter Rising.
Mr Brown then introduced M/s Tara O’Brien who gave her rendition, on Concertina, of “The Foggy Dew” and Mr Micheál Treacy who recited “Who fears to speak of Easter week ?”. Mr Paddy Lambe then sang “The Foggy Dew.”
Mr Brown thanked the organisers and those who took part in the unveiling ceremony.
‘Amhrán na bhFiann’(‘The Soldiers’ Song’, Irish National Anthem) was sung by all in attendance, accompanied by Mr Gerard Neville on Bagpipes.
A reminder to all; this Sunday, between 1:00am and 2:00am, our clocks and watches will require to be skipped forward by one hour, thus depriving everyone of 60 minutes of precious shut-eye. Those with high tech gadgets e.g. Mobile Phones, Computers, Laptops etc. need not worry, as same time change will automatically occur without any required personal intervention on our part.
With 1916 on everyone’s lips this weekend, due to our celebrations commemorating the Irish Easter Rising, keep in mind that the ‘Daylight Saving Act’ was first introduced in that very same year. The first notion of attempting to not waste our daylight came about following a campaign which was begun in 1907, by the Edwardian British builder William Willett. It took until 1916 for those in authority to realise that this same time changing action would reduce considerable unnecessary energy consumption; while also saving countless lives, since fewer accidents occur in the mornings, when compared to our darker evenings.
So how did Thurles people and residents of our surrounding hinterland take to the first introduction of the ‘Daylight Saving Act’ in 1916? We find our answer recorded in the journal kept by Fr. Michael Maher C.C., Thurles, and then Secretary to the Archbishop of Cashel and Emly, Dr. John Mary Harty.
May 21st 1916 “A new ordinance came into force in the middle of May; it was called the ‘Daylight Saving Act‘. It meant that all clocks were to be put forward an hour on the morning of Sunday the 21st May at two o’clock and they were to be left at that standard until the night of the 1st of October.
William Willett (1856 – 1915)
In former years, a Mr. [William] Willet of London frequently introduced a bill into the House of Commons to this effect, but it was always killed with ridicule. The poor man died a short time ago without having his hopes realised and now, when it was found that an immense saving would be effected through the curtailing of artificial light, and as economy was recommended in all possible directions, the bill was introduced again and became an act of parliament without laughter or opposition.
We did not put on the Cathedral clock [Cathedral of The Assumption, Thurles] until after the devotions on Sunday night, because we did not know on the previous Sunday whether the act would apply to Ireland, and so we could not forewarn the people about the change in the hours of the services. The people in the towns fell in with the change without demur and everything went on just as before. We altered nothing except the hands of the clock. Some of the country people kept to the old time except on Sunday, when they had to go to Mass an hour earlier.
It did not suit the country parts as much as the towns, because the morning is not a good time for saving hay or carrying on harvesting operations, the evening is much better, so if the men stopped work at six o’clock by the new time they would leave off when the hay or corn was in the best condition to be put together or cut down. On dairy farms too, the milkers who had to rise at 4:30 or 5:00 o’clock by the old time, would have to part with their beds at an unearthly hour by the new reckoning.
In towns on the other hand it suited admirably because it gave a long bright evening to the populace after shops were closed and work abandoned. It made no difference to the clergy except that the 12:00 o’clock Mass in towns was much more convenient according to the new regulations.”
The electorate of the new constituency of Co. Tipperary have now chosen their five TD’s to represent them in the 32nd Dáil.
Two outgoing Fine Gael TD’s, namely Deputy Mr Noel Coonan and Mr Tom Hayes, latter Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, have both lost their seats.
Minister and Deputy Leader of the Labour Party, Mr Alan Kelly just about managed to hold his seat in this constituency; elected on the sixth count, without ever reaching a full quota.
Topping all the election results and as expected, was hard working Mr Michael Lowry TD, who for the last 5 General Elections has consistently been returned by his electorate on the first count.
A warm welcome must also go to Co. Tipperary and Thurles town representative Councillor Mr Jackie Cahill. Mr Cahill, a former President of the ICMSA (Irish Creamery Milk Suppliers Association) from 2005 to 2011; Chairman of Irish Dairy Council from 2011 to date; a Member of Bord Bia and Director of Thurles Greyhound Stadium, will now take up his post as a newly elected TD for Fianna Fáil in Dáil Éireann in March 2016. Congratulations to Jackie.
Meanwhile, to our Dublin Media; but especially to all of those hundreds of weary canvassers based in Co. Tipperary, (regardless of their political or other affiliations), operating in the name of ‘Democracy’; well done and in the words of singer / songwriter Bruce Springsteen:- [Take your own interpretation from this song!]
“I been knocking on the door that holds the throne. I been looking for the map that leads me home I been stumbling on good hearts turned to stone. The road of good intentions has gone dry as a bone. We take care of our own, We take care of our own.”
We are reminded of Winston Churchill’s reflection when he wrote in June 2007: “We are made to ask what it is that political democracy gives us. The system is utilitarian, (Meaning: the best moral action for rational choice), but is it a fit object of faith and hope?”
The new 32nd Dáil government representatives chosen, may possibly give us an answer to this much debated question.
“The other day the old landlord came by for his rent; I told him no money I had. Besides, t’wasn’t fair to ask me to pay; the times were so awfully bad. He felt discontent at not getting his rent and he shook his big head with a frown. Says he, “I’ll take half,” but says I with a laugh, “Do you want your (‘Lobbyists’) old lobby washed down?”
The traditional Irish folk-song “Do You Want Your Old Lobby Washed Down” appears to have first originated on the borders of counties Tipperary and Cork. Traditionally, ‘washing down a lobby’ was an alternative method of payment of your rent if money was scarce; the equivalent in later years of washing dishes at a restaurant, should you find yourself unable to afford your already consumed meal.
In the lyrics of this old song these words, depending on your particular mindset, are seen as perhaps being an intended double entendre. (‘Double Entendre’, meaning a figure of speech in which a phrase could be misunderstood to be somewhat risqué.)
New Recycling Regulation
Increased Recycling Charges
The Minister for Privatising Irish Water, Tipperary’s most ambitious Mr Alan Kelly, has signed off on plans to make people pay for every kilo of waste they produce; including the contents of our green bins. Most of us I suspect have been notified about this fact over the past seven days, with correspondence arriving from our waste disposal companies.
It would appear that not only is Mr Kelly looking for his own P45, but also seeking P45’s for his Fine Gael and other Labour Party colleagues in the forth coming general election.
Mr Kelly and his Labour / Fine Gael colleagues are being adamant on the doorsteps, that they never increased taxes on the Irish people during their soon to end term in office. Flat Taxes, introduced during a period of austerity, i.e. like Water Charges, Property Charges, Bin Charges and now the promised new Increased Recycling Charges, forced on people with no ability to pay, it seems are simply that, “Charges” not taxes. (Thank God the elderly got that €3 per week in their Old Age Pensions.)
Lobbyists or Government, who is to blame?
Was Mr Kelly advised to break this news before a general election by his loaned advisor Mr Cónán O’Broin or by his permanent adviser Mr Jim McGrath, latter reportedly earning jointly some €159,000, or did he just decide to ‘blab’ without their knowledge? So who is behind this new tax increase being imposed on the Irish people, including working people, families and communities? Was it ‘Lobbyists’ representing Waste Disposal Companies wearing a track in Mr Kelly’s plush carpeted office or was it our present coalition cabinet desperately seeking something that could take another tax hike? Lets face it, further taxing on the now essential motor vehicle would have been out of the question.
The plain answer to the above is “I don’t know”, but Mr Kelly does, so ask him yourself when he next appears on your doorstep canvassing. Tomorrow you will be told that this new increased Recycling Charge is a ruse to create long term rural employment.
One thing we do know down here in rural Ireland; where the buses no longer run and where rural doctors no longer wish to function; the black bags of household rubbish will soon begin to reappear, dumped smugly after dark once again on our rural mountainsides, our rural back lanes and in our uninhabited bog lands.
What has rural Ireland done that they have been neglected, abandoned and deserted by this Labour / Fine Gael Government? In the words of an old Irish curse / hex and addressed to Mr Kelly ; “Sir, May you find the bees but never the honey.”
Independent TD Deputy Michael Lowry has called on all Tipperary Tourism Providers, in communities throughout Co. Tipperary, to “Reach Out”.
Speaking recently on the subject of Tipperary Tourism, Deputy Michael Lowry TD has called on all urban and rural communities, across Co. Tipperary, to familiarise themselves with the website “Ireland Reaching Out (Ireland XO)” (http://www.irelandxo.com/) and to become fully involved locally, through the many voluntary roles offered.
The Independent Deputy stated; “Ireland Reaching Out (Ireland XO)” is a volunteer-based, non-profit initiative which can build lasting links between the widely spread global Diaspora; estimated at some 70 million people of Irish decent, many of whom can, through past family discussion, already identify with their particular parish of origin here in Co. Tipperary.”
“The ‘Ireland Reaching Out’ website is simple but intelligent, based on the idea of ‘involved reverse genealogy’. So instead of waiting for our global Tipperary Diaspora to trace their roots themselves, Ireland XO volunteers can network directly with people from around Tipperary in their local communities. By doing so local communities can assist in building bridges between the present and the past; through connecting people with their Irish home parishes and discovering very often lost ancestry. This in turn will results in badly needed tourism being attracted to all areas of Tipperary; while creating some small, yet instant full time and part time employment in the county through our excellent Hotel Accommodation, B&B’s, Restaurants, Museums and Visitor Centres”, stated Lowry.
“Tipperary published brochures, while necessary to some degree, can be no substitute, in our modern day Ireland, for on-line world-wide-web marketing. With the unset of the new tourism initiative ‘Ireland’s Ancient East”, focused on heritage and history and themed along the four pillars of; Ancient Ireland; Early Christian Ireland; Medieval Ireland and Anglo Ireland, there is a very grave possibility that our northern Tipperary countryside; north of the Rock of Cashel & Holycross, will remain somewhat neglected” continued Lowry.
“To-date, Ireland Reaching Out (Ireland XO) has helped thousands of Irish people discover the history of their long lost relatives, their existing families, endevering to reconnect them, where possible, with their Irish parish / community of origin. Whether people have emigrated recently or have never set foot on our sandy shores, Irish people will always welcome visitors from all over the world and particularly those who share an existing affinity for our rich and varied Tipperary heritage. It should therefore remain our aim to assist those now resident abroad to return and discover the real story of their families, their past history and reconnect them with the Tipperary of 2016.” concluded Michael Lowry.