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sunset: 6:29 pm


A Gardeners Friend – The Great Tit

Often misidentified as a Blue Tit or Coal Tit; one resident bird species, always welcome in our gardens here in Ireland, is the Great Tit, latter one of our top-20 most widespread of garden birds.

This shy, often non easily trusting little residents, is welcomed by gardeners since it lives on a diet of mainly insects, seeds and nuts. By using a peanut feeders during the winter months and food scraps on a bird table, this black-headed and largest of the tit family, will remain a constant visitor.

Word of warning, especially regarding the use of peanuts, fat and bread at nesting time, since these foods can be harmful when adult birds are feed their young. If you must put out peanuts in Spring and Summer, only do so in tight mesh feeders that will not allow sizeable pieces of peanuts to be removed, thus avoiding the risk of baby chicks choking.

The Great Tit is easily identified with its striking black head and large white cheek patches. Also a distinct black band can be easily spotted runs down the centre of its bright yellow breast. When perched viewers can observe a distinct white bar on both wings. Its bill is pointed but nevertheless stout for its size, while it stands on legs which appear bluish-grey in colour.

Its typical chirp, sounds like “teacher, teacher” and or ” tew, tew tew” with often repetitive variations.

The Great Tit breeds throughout Eire and will nest in cavities in trees or stone walls and are known to choose unusual nesting sites such as pipes or even letterboxes. Where silence prevails, it will readily use man manufactured nest-boxes.


Death Of Bridget Gough, Formerly Stuke, Rossmore, Thurles

It was with great sadness we learned of the passing today, Wednesday 23rd August 2017, of Mrs Bridget Gough (née Browne), Ballymore, Gouldscross, Cashel, Co. Tipperary, and formerly of Stuke, Rossmore, Thurles, Co. Tipperary

Mrs Gough passed away while in her 90th year.

Her passing is most deeply regretted by her loving husband Johnny; sons Frankie and James; daughter Mary; grand son Seán; grand daughter Samanta; great-grandson Matthew; sisters Betty and Eileen; brothers James and Michael; brothers-in-law Mossy and Pat; sisters-in-law; nieces; nephews; extended relatives and friends.

Funeral Arrangements
The earthly remains of Mrs Gough will repose in Kennedy’s Funeral Home, Dublin Road, Thurles, on tomorrow evening, Thursday August 24th, from 5.00pm to 6.45pm, to arrive in Holycross Abbey, Thurles, Co. Tipperary at 7.30pm.

Funeral Mass will take place on Friday at 11.30am, followed by interment in the adjoining cemetery.

Go ndéana Dia trócaire ar a h-anam dílis.


Death Of Margaret Sheehy, Killough Lodge, Thurles

It was with great sadness we learned of the passing yesterday, Sunday 20th August 2017, of Mrs Margaret Sheehy (née Hurley), Dalkey, Co. Dublin; formerly Timoleague, Co. Cork and Killough Lodge, Thurles, Co. Tipperary.

Beloved wife of the late Maurice; Mrs Sheehy passed away peacefully, in her 96th year, while in the loving care of her family and the Staff of Altadore Nursing Home.

Her passing is most deeply regretted by her sons Sean, Ambrose, Maurice and Edward; daughters Anne, Mary, Bernadette and Elizabeth (Lawrence); sons-in-law; daughters-in-law; grandchildren; great-grandchildren;, sisters Lena (Holland) and Sheila (O’Keefe); sisters-in-law; nephews; nieces; extended family and friends.

Funeral Arrangements
The earthly remains of Mrs Sheehy will repose at Quinn’s Funeral Home, 28 Glasthule Rd, Sandycove, Dublin on tomorrow evening, Tuesday, from 5.30pm to 7.30pm. Removal on Wednesday to the Church of the Assumption, Castle Street, Dalkey, Co Dublin where funeral Mass will take place at 11.30am, followed by interment later in Holycross Abbey Cemetery, Holycross, Thurles, Co. Tipperary.

Note Please: No flowers.

Go ndéana Dia trócaire ar a h-anam dílis.


Hurricane Gert Halts Work In Thurles


“You know, nobody really understands complete failure, unless of course it happens to yourself personally”, said a rather reflective sounding Mikey Ryan to his fellow Thurles friend Gerry Grant. Both men were to be found supping pints in the doorway of the Arch Bar, Liberty Square, Thurles; their work having been brought to a complete halt by torrential rain, which had arrived courtesy of Hurricane Gert; latter pushing eastward from the Atlantic Ocean.

“How do you mean”, said Gerry.

“Don’t look, but do you see Patsy McGann sheltering in the doorway of Supermac’s across the street” said Mikey.  “Better known as ‘Silent’ nowadays, due to the fact that he refuses, point blank, to enter into even one single word of dialogue with his fellow man.  Sure, he won’t even bid you the time of day” continued Mikey

“Aye, sad, sure I wonder what happened there”, queried Gerry.

“Ah begod it’s no secret”, said Mikey, “Sure, he used to be a teacher; spent his early teaching years in the Bolivian jungle or some such hole; supposedly teaching backward red tribal natives the English language, and also how to behave in a civilised fashion, in accordance with our practised modern Irish standards. They say he hasn’t spoken one word since he returned here to Thurles.”

Mikey took a mouthful of his beer before continuing, “They say it all started when Patsy took a native Amazon tribal Chief; Waziri, I believe his name was; for a walk in the dense jungle, to teach him the English vocabulary. Patsy was there pointing to a tree and saying to the chief, “Tree” and the chief is looking at the tree, grunting, pointing, before saying “Tree”.  Pleased with the overall response by the Amazon tribal chief, they now walk a little further and Patsy supposedly points to a rock, saying “Rock”.  Again, the chief looks, grunts and points, saying “Rock”.

“As you can imagine”, said Mikey, “Patsy is feeling enthusiastic about the progress in his English lesson. Then, without warning, his vocabulary class is suddenly disturbed by a noisy rustling in the nearby Monkey Brush Vines (Combretum rotundifolium).  Fearing an attack by a colony of Pit Viper Rattlesnakes, they peek over the top of the bushes, to encounter a tribal male and female in, shall we just say, a rather embarrassing and somewhat compromising posture”.

“Patsy now” said Mikey, taking time to swallow another mouthful of beer, “gets rather flustered, but quickly responds, whispering, “See Man riding bicycle”.  Chief Waziri looks at the couple briefly, before pulling out his hollowed, bamboo blowpipe; killing the couple, with two well aimed poisoned darts”.

“Teacher Patsy goes totally ballistic”, continued Mikey, “Yelling at the tribal chief about how he has spent years teaching his tribe to be civilised and how to be Christian in their dealings, one with an another; but now after all this newly learned Irish civilisation he is behaving like a loyal member of the Dublin Hutch and Kinahan criminal gang, returning to his old ways, having murdered two of his subjects in cold blood.

The chief again looks, grunts and points, in obvious anger, “Man riding my bicycle”.

“Ah sheer tragedy all right” agreed Gerry, “but sure I suppose as the song lyrics go, it’s like, Trying to learn from what’s behind you, and never knowing what’s in store, makes each day a constant battle just to stay between the shores.

“Have we the price of another pint before we go?”, queries Mikey.


Life & Loves Of Thurles Native Majella Brown

Mrs Majella Brown, a 70-year-old Thurles woman, having received her free medical card, went to visit her local doctor. Previously she could not have easily afforded the contemptible €65 demanded for the usual 5 minute consultation with her physician, but now thanks to her free medical card, she arrived to the surgery to seek advice on how to revive her husband’s libido.

Having considered her husband’s age and state of health from previous available medical records; the doctor prescribed a well-known product, latter readily obtainable to all medical card holders and known as ‘Viagra’.

“It simply won’t happen, not even a chance”, a dejected Majella informed her friend Betty, in somewhat low tones half an hour later, over a large G & T, in the corner of the Monks Public House, Mitchel Street, Thurles, “Sure it’s me best to get him to take his Type 2 Diabetic tablet in the morning”.

Betty gave Majella one of her renowned knowing smiles, “Not a problem”, said she “Try giving him a Tipperary Viagra”.

“What the hell is a Tipperary Viagra?”, Majella queried.

“It’s Viagra dissolved in his morning tae”, said Betty, with a knowing nod “Believe me I have had the need to used the method meself on a few occasions, on my own ould lad, before he died; God be good to him. Sure, trust me, Majella even without his forbidden use of sugar, he won’t even taste it”.

Having promised to give it an immediate try, Betty called on Majella some days later, for a progress report.

“Well, how did it go?” she asked with a knowing smile.

“Oh faith, it was terrible”, whined Majella, in vocal tones more akin to a hired ‘keener’ (wailer) at a west of Ireland wake, “It was simply unspeakable I tell ya; for the past two days I’ve been totally beside meself!”

“Oh, no! What in the world happened?” queried Betty with a look of tragedy about to set in.

“Well, I did the deed, you know what I mean, just as you advised; but to be sure of outright success on the day, I actually put three tablets in his morning tae, and sure he drank the lot”, said Majella. “Well they literally took effect immediately; he jumped straight up out of his chair, with the smile of an evil Satan on his face; a twinkle in his eye, and with one fierce swoop, with the back of his hand, he resigned the cups, saucers and cutlery; previously laid out on the table; to a flight across the room. He grabbed me from behind, ripped me clothing to tatters, before committing an act of passion there and then, right on top of the highly polished table.  ‘Twas truly the stuff of nightmares, I can tell ya Betty; yes and the stuff of a frenzied nightmare at that.”

“What was so terrible about that?” asked Betty, “Wasn’t the experience good?”

“Feckin hell, I do declare it to be the best experience I’ve had since my late-night drunken encounter in the back seat of Paddy Ryan’s Ford Anglia; way back in the late 1950’s”, said Majella, “but there is one major regrettable drawback which has kept me confined here to the house; sure I won’t be able to show me face in ‘Ryan’s Daughter’ Restaurant, in Rossa Street, Thurles, for many a year to come.”