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Death Of Willie Maher, Kennedy Park, Thurles

It was with great sadness we learned of the death, on Friday 17th November 2017, of Mr Willie Maher, Brisbane, Australia and formerly Kennedy Park, Thurles, Co. Tipperary.

Deeply regretted by his loving family; partner Hilary, children Greta, Roisin and Lous, mother Agnes, sisters Anne and Nora, brothers Larry, Paddy, Mixie, Thomas and Donal, uncles, aunts, nephews, nieces, brother-in-law, sister-in-law, extended relatives, neighbours and a wide circle of friends.

Funeral Arrangements
The earthly remains of Mr Maher will repose at Hugh Ryan’s Funeral Home, Slievenamon Road, Thurles, on Saturday 2nd December from 6.00pm to 8.00pm, to arrive at the Cathedral of the Assumption, Thurles at 8.30pm.

Requiem Mass will be held on Sunday 3rd December at 12.00 noon, followed by interment immediately afterwards in St Patrick’s Cemetery, Thurles, Co. Tipperary.

Family flowers only, donations, if desired, to the Kevin Bell Trust.

Go ndéana Dia trócaire ar a anam dílis.

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Tipp Drama Festival Director Pays Tribute To late Biddy White Lennon

Journalist and Author Tom Ryan, Rahealty, Thurles, Reports:-

The Festival Director of the Co. Tipperary Open Drama Festival, Mr Donal Duggan, has yesterday paid tribute to the memory of actress/author, Ms Biddy White Lennon, who passed away just last weekend.

The popular actress who played Maggie in the popular RTE soap, “The Riordans”, adjudicated at the Tipperary Drama Festival in Holycross twice, once in 1984 and again in 2013.  Mr Duggan, then (as now) Festival Director and Mr Tom Molony (then Chairman of Holycross/Ballycahill Drama Group) and highly regarded seasoned Thespian, Mr Pat McGrath, were even incorporated into Biddy’s script for the Radio 1 version of the popular soap, “Glenroe”.

Pictured above, in better times, are (L to R) Mr Donal Duggan (Festival Director), the late Biddy White Lennon and Mr Michael Lowry, TD.

Biddy stayed locally in Holycross during her festival sojourns as adjudicator, including with Mr & Mrs Tom and Elizabeth Molony, The Green, Holycross. Indeed in the radio script for “Glenroe” it was mentioned that the Glenroe Players were on the festival circuit and met Tipperary Festival Director, Mr Donal Duggan and Committee Chairman, Mr Tom Molony, and the inimitable Mr Pat McGrath in Holycross at the festival, thus ensuring a modicum of fame for this Abbey-side trio.

Biddy reminded Mr Donal Duggan of this when they next met in 2013. “She was pleased with her stay here in Holycross”, said Mr Duggan, who brought her on a site-seeing tour of the Rock of Cashel and other historic places in the county; a traditional courtesy he affords all festival adjudicators.

Mr Duggan said he was saddened to hear of the passing of the popular actress/author; stating
“Biddy was a very competent adjudicator and very easy to work with. Her popularity from her years as ‘Maggie’ in “The Riordans” helped to attract huge audiences to the festival in 1984.  She went on to write the radio script for “Glenroe” having adjudicated at the Festival in 1984.  Ar dheis De a hanam”

Yet one other Thurles resident was well acquainted with Ms Biddy White Lennon. George Willoughby got to know Biddy through numerous appearances in “The Riordans”, during the years 1975/76, while working as a featured extra. “Being involved with the “The Riordans”, was like being a member of a close-knit family. The word ‘celebrity’ back then did not exist; featured actors and lowly extras like myself taking part, all used the same canteen facilities, on location”, said George.

“Filming “The Riordans” was quite radical for that time, with Outside Broadcast Units being used rather than the more usual TV studio setting”, said George. “Even if scenery and prop space had been available to build a studio farm, it would have been nigh impossible to rid audio tape of the sounds of then Dublin city life, with its constant drone of Ambulance/Fire/Garda sirens; overhead aeroplanes and endless traffic noise pollution”.

“To speed up the process of getting film back to the studio for editing”, continued George, “it was instead decided to film on a rural farm near Dunboyne in County Meath, although the series would have us believe it was set in a fictional townsland called Leestown, in Co. Kilkenny.”

“The Riordans” radically changed the rules of broadcasting” stated George.  “The rural characters portrayed by cast members like Ms Biddy White Lennon, inspired the creation of Yorkshire Television equivalents “Emmerdale”, which we so enjoy today. Even production crew from what was to be “Emmerdale Farm” visited “The Riordans” rural set to observe how RTE were managing this somewhat new phenomenon of Outside Broadcast Units”.

“Alas, for “The Riordans”, the music originally used to introduce each episode, Seoirse Bodley’s orchestral arrangement of the Irish traditional tune, “The Palatine’s Daughter” (Iníon An Phailitínigh), no longer plays on Irish TV, since the series was regrettably chopped back in 1979″, concluded George.

The Independent North Tipperary Dail Deputy, Michael Lowry, took centre stage on Ms Biddy White Lennon’s last visit to Holycross, Thurles in 2013, when he officially opened the 31st annual Co. Tipperary Open Drama Festival in a packed Holycross Community Centre, where Biddy White Lennon, was the professional adjudicator.

Mr Lowry, who received a warm reception from the audience in the packed theatre in his home village, sponsored the local awards-winning Holycross / Ballycahill Drama Group production of the comedy, “The God Of Carnage”, by French playwright, Yasmina Reza, which opened the
festival on that particular night.

Mr Lowry has supported the festival for many years and is a popular figure with audiences. The attendance at the opening night also included his son, Councillor Micheal Lowry; members of drama groups from various parts of Co. Tipperary; the then “Rose of Thurles” Ms Emma Moore; Littleton’s Jim Ryan (MCC) and the now late Fr. Tom Breen, (PP), latter then also the Festival Committee President.

Mr Lowry lauded the organising committee on its work for the festival over 31 years and in particular Festival Director, Donal Duggan, who has been in that role for all that time.

The Holycross/Ballycahill group got the Festival off to “a great start”, according to the popular adjudicator, Ms Biddy White Lennon, “who was no stranger to Holycross”, as Michael Lowry pointed out. He recalled that in 1983 when the late TJ Maher, MEP, opened the first Festival in Holycross, only fourteen people were to be counted in the audience on that night.

The Festival had grown and developed over the years since then. “We have a fantastic organisation here, in Holycross, and I congratulate them. It is a totally voluntary organisation who have given endless hours to the festival.  Groups come from all over Ireland to Holycross and almost every year, groups from Holycross Festival reach the All-Ireland Finals.  Holycross is now established as one of Ireland’s major Drama Festival Locations”, stated Lowry on the night.

“The God Of Carnage” on that night was directed by Pat McGrath and the cast comprised of Jacqui Lacey, Martin “Marty” O’ Neill, Derek Doherty and Salome Hennessy. Lighting was by Paddy Connolly and Set Construction was by Pat McGrath, Andy Slattery, Catherine Lowry. Set

Design/Dressing was by Catherine Lowry and Marian Gilmore. Sound was by Joanne O’Neill and make-up by Peg Ryan, whilst Sally O’Rourke was in charge of Continuity.

The Set Crew comprised: Elaine O’ Dwyer, Gerry O’ Dwyer, Jack Henchion, Diana Lacey, Geraldine Henchion, Claire Ryan, Kevin Darmody.

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Death Of Larry Kenehan, Formally Thurles, Co. Tipperary

It was with great sadness we learned of the death yesterday, Sunday 26th November 2017, of Mr Larry Kenehan, 26 Bay View Rise, Ballybane, Co. Galway and formally Thurles, Co. Tipperary.

Beloved husband of Ann and much loved father of Michelle; his passing is sadly missed by his mother Maura; brother Joe; sisters Teresa, Bernie, Angela, Elizabeth and Christine; brothers-in-law; nieces; nephews; extended relatives; neighbours and many friends.

Funeral Arrangements
The earthly remains of Mr Kenehan will repose at his residence on Tuesday, 28th November, from 5.00pm to 8.00pm. Removal will take place on Wednesday morning, 29th November, to the Church of The Holy Family, St James Rd, Mervue, Co. Galway, to arrive for Requiem Mass at 11.00am.

Private cremation to follow.

Note Please: House private on Wednesday morning. Family flowers only. Donations, if desired, to R.N.L.I. .

Go ndéana Dia trócaire ar a anam dílis.

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Death Of Michael Fewer, The Mall, Thurles,

It was with a great personal sadness I learned of the death yesterday, Sunday 26th November 2017, of Mr Michael Fewer, The Mall, Thurles, Co. Tipperary.

The sudden passing of Mr Fewer is most deeply regretted by his loving wife Gerardine; daughter Kate; sons Stephen and Peter; their partners Hugo and Sheena; brother Joe; sister Mary Rose; sisters-in-law; brothers-in-law; nephews; nieces; extended relatives; work colleagues (Spain, Fewer, Quinlan & Co.); hillwalkers; neighbours and many good friends.

Funeral Arrangements
The earthly remains of Mr Fewer will repose at Hugh Ryan’s Funeral Home, Slievenamon Rd, Thurles, Co. Tipperary on Wednesday, 29th November, from 5.00pm to 7.00pm.

A civil funeral ceremony will take place in Hugh Ryans’ Funeral Home on Thursday, 30th November, at 11.00am.  Same will be followed by interment immediately afterwards in St. Patrick’s Cemetery, Thurles, Co. Tipperary.

Note Please: Family flowers only. Donations, if desired, to South East Mountain Rescue Association, (SEMRA), Heywood Rd, Clonmel, Co. Tipperary.

May He Rest In Peace.

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Death Of John O’Dwyer, Corbally, Drangan, Thurles

It was with great sadness we learned of the death yesterday, Sunday 26th November 2017, of Mr John (Jack) O’Dwyer, Corbally, Drangan, Thurles, Co. Tipperary.

Predeceased by his wife Kattie; Mr O’Dwyer passed away suddenly. John (Jack),  most deeply regretted by his loving daughters Joan (O’Donoghue) and Catherine (Ryan); sons-in-law Sean and Billy; grandchildren Thomas, Katie, Sean, James and Bill; brother Billy; sisters-in-law Philomena and Hannie, extended relatives; neighbours and friends.

Funeral Arrangements
The earthly remains of Mr O’Dwyer will repose at his residence on tomorrow evening Tuesday  November 28th, from 3.00pm to 7.30pm, followed by removal to the Church of The Immaculate Conception, Newtown, Drangan, to arrive at 8.00pm.

Requiem Mass will take place on Wednesday  November 29th at 11.00am, followed by interment in The Assumption Cemetery, Drangan, Thurles, Co. Tipperary.

Go ndéana Dia trócaire ar a anam dílis.

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