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Upperchurch Hosts 9th Annual Walking Weekend

The picturesque mountainous village of Upperchurch [Map Ref] will host its 9th Annual Walking Festival this coming weekend. Since its inception in 2006 this event continues to grow from strength to strength making it now one of the main walking festival gatherings of its type in the country.

This year’s program once again offers over a dozen different walks as well as cycling and indoor rock climbing activities. Set dancing and traditional music enthusiasts will also have a good time. For beginners and the less mobile, the new 1 km bog walk is short, level and suitable for wheelchairs and buggies.

The fun will begin on Friday night (Nov 7th) with a choice of two torch lit road walks; the 10 km Glown-Garnakilka walk is for those who like a fast pace while the 7 km Moher-Gortkelly walk will cater for those who enjoy a more leisurely speed.

The really serious hill walkers will get going on Saturday morning, taking to the gruelling 18 km Hills of Upperchurch walk. This walk is entirely for the very fit, while later in the day there will be shorter and easier walks leaving Upperchurch village.

Next Sunday will see no less than six walks and three cycle events taking place simultaneously. There are two new routes this year; the 18 km Hollyford-Red Hill walk takes place in the Hollyford-Cappawhite area and will include an option of visiting a cave where the outlaw Ned O’ the Hill (“Éamonn an Chnoic,” Edmund O’Ryan 1670–1724) is understood to have taken refuge in bygone days.

The 14 km Farney Castle-Upperchurch walk is the only linear walk of the weekend. There will be an opportunity to take in a guided tour of the Castle before this walk for a small additional fee so arrive early. The 8 km walk on the Birchill Nature Trail starts at Rosmult and there will be two further walks in Upperchurch also.
Cyclists will have a choice of three different routes over 25 km, 50 km and 75 km all starting from Upperchurch at 12 noon on Sunday.

The Upper Limits Indoor Climbing Wall will be open after all walks and will offer short introductory climbs. (Note: Clean footwear please.)
All events start at Upperchurch Community Centre, except for the Hollyford-Red Hill Walk, the Farney Castle-Upperchurch Walk and the Birchill Nature Trail Walk, latter all on Sunday.

The organisers wish to thank all the landowners in the area involved for their cooperation.

Registration before all events. Friday night walks: €5. Other walks and cycles: Adults €10, post primary students €5, primary school students free. Farney Castle tour €5. Complimentary refreshments after all walks.

For further details visit www.upperchurch.ie or Telephone 086 0518934.

Programme of Events:

Fri. Nov 7th: Glown-Garnakilka Road Walk 10 km 7.30 p.m. Moher-Gortkelly Road walk 7 km 7.45 p.m. Reception and official opening in Upperchurch Hall at 9.00 p.m. followed by Seisiún Mór in Kinane’s.

Sat. Nov. 8th: Hills of Upperchurch Walk 18 km 10.00 a.m. Knockalough-Red Hugh Walk 8 km or 10 km 12.15 p.m. Eamon an Chnoic Loop Walk 8 km 12.30 p.m. Set Dancing lessons in Ryan’s 4.00 p.m. Traditional music in Jim O’ the Mills 10.00 p.m.

Sun. Nov. 9th: Farney Castle-Upperchurch Walk 14 km 11.00 a.m. Start Farney Castle on Holycross-Ballycahill Road. Guided tours of Castle at 10.00 a.m. and 10.30 a.m. Hollyford-Red Hill Walk 14 km or 18 km 11.00 a.m. Start Hollyford Village. Cycles over 25 km, 50 km and 75 km all start at 12.00 noon. Knockalough-Red Hugh Walk 8 km or 10 km Start 12.15 p.m. Eamon an Chnoic Loop 8 km Start 12.30 p.m. Birchill Nature Trail Walk 8 km Start 12.30 p.m. P.J.Ryan’s Pub Rosmult on Thurles-Upperchurch Road.

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Tipp’s Anguish During Hurling ‘Famine’ Years Revealed

Noel A new publication reveals Tipp’s anguish during hurling ‘Famine’ years.

Three times Tipperary All-Star Tadhg O’Connor, who captained Tipperary to win the 1971 All-Ireland, (the last before the ‘eighteen year famine’) has revealed, in a new book, that had the ‘back-door system’ been in place back then, Tipperary would have won more All-Ireland titles.

In a new book entitled ‘Captains of the Premier Ship,’ which was penned by local journalist Noel Dundon of The Tipperary Star and which is to be launched on Saturday November 15th in St Patrick’s College here in Thurles by Nicky English, the Roscrea man states that while Tipperary were just outside the standard in the straight knock-out system, a back-door would have given them vital extra games and, crucially, a chance to make amends.

Tipperary, having beaten Kilkenny in the All-Ireland Final of 1971; a game made famous by the appearance of Michael ‘Babs’ Keating in his bare feet, surrendered their Munster and All-Ireland titles in 1972. The team bounced back in 1973 to reach the Munster final again. Limerick were the opponents for the second time in three years, but on this occasion Tadhg ended up once more on the losing side.

“We were just outside the standard and losing those games meant that your season was over. We were beaten by the eventual Munster winners and they went on to at least contest the All-Ireland final. We were not too far off at all and I suppose if the current back-door system was in place back then, we would have been in the shake-up a lot more often. But it wasn’t and, when you lost in the championship, that was it for another year. The back-door came about forty years too late for us,” he said.

Tadgh played in three National Hurling League Finals, but won only one medal, when Tipperary beat Galway in 1979. However, he cited the importance of the league and said that players always made themselves available to play for Tipperary whenever they could, because, having been knocked out so early in the championship, it was the only show in town for regular games in the ‘blue and gold’ jersey.

Also contained in the book, which is a 320 page history of the twenty one All-Ireland winning senior hurling captains from the county and a record of the twenty six All-Ireland titles captured, the legendary Jimmy Doyle tells of how he cried the day1964 captain Michael Murphy was told he would have to retire from the game due to a recurring knee injury. Doyle, captain in 1962 and 1965 described his Thurles Sarsfields clubmate as ‘stylish and classy’ and added that he had a magnificent All-Ireland Final on the great Eddie Keher in 1964.
“I went to school with him and lived near him. He was always in and out of our house at home in Bohernanave, Thurles. When he was forced to retire I was so disappointed for him because he lived for hurling and loved it. I cried actually when he got the news,” Jimmy said. He added, “We nearly reared him and he was a brilliant sticks-man. He was as good a half back as there was and he was badly missed when he departed the scene. It was very hard on him. It was cartilage trouble – a problem which would be mended now in a few weeks – but it was the finishing of a hurler back then. I had a scare myself training for the club when one of the lads came down on my knee during football training. I was out for a good while and I realised how quickly it could all come to an end – as it did for Michael. I was lucky, I managed to get back but the knee was never the same.

“I was always very fond of Michael – himself and Sean McLoughlin are great club men and great Tipperary men. McLoughlin was so unlucky not to captain Tipperary to an All-Ireland title in 1963 – we spoke about it recently and I told him that along with Michael’s injury, one of my regrets would be that we didn’t win the All-Ireland when McLoughlin was captain,” Jimmy says.

The book ‘Captains of the Premier Ship,’ which will be available in local bookshops after the launch, is a real collectors item as well as being a very interesting insight into those unique ‘band of brothers’ – Tipperary’s All-Ireland winning senior hurling captains.

All profits from this most excellent publication will be donated to the mental health charity AWARE.

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Fine Gael Doners Brother On Board Of Irish Water.

waterPer yesterdays Irish Times (29th Oct 2014) the brother of a Fine Gael financial donor was appointed to the board of Irish Water. Mr Andrew Sheehy is recorded as having given €1,000 to M/s Lucinda Creighton, when she was then contesting a Dáil seat for Fine Gael. Ms Creighton is reported to have stated that Mr Sheehy “made a donation to my campaign in 2007, but I don’t really know the guy.”

Mr Andrew Sheehy is recorded under Standards in Public Office (SIPO) records as having donated €1,000 to Ms Lucinda Creighton in 2007, when she then contested and eventually won a Dáil seat in the constituency of Dublin South East. Mr Sheehy’s  SIPO declaration lists his address as Cashel, Co Tipperary.

According to the Irish Times, Mr Andrew Sheehy’s brother is listed as Colman Francis Sheehy in the Companies Registration Office (CRO) under records held on behalf of Irish Water. Information supplied on the Irish Water website shows Mr Coleman Sheehy named as one of the board members and confirms he is “involved in property investment and development.” Mr Sheehy’s appointment was approved by the then ministers Phil Hogan and Pat Rabbitte in November 2013.

Only two members of Irish Water’s board applied for their positions through a public recruitment process, according to records released by the Department of the Environment. None of the remaining board members, who are each entitled to an annual fee of €15,000, went through the same process and each was hand-picked by Ervia, latter new name for former Bord Gais.

In CRO documents confirming his directorship of Irish Water, Mr Sheehy’s current occupation is listed as; Property Consultant and director of Melot Properties Limited. His brother Mr Andrew Sheehy is also listed as another director of Melot Properties Ltd..

Mr Andrew Sheehy is known to socialise in Fine Gael circles, and is understood to be an associate of Mr Frank Quilter, a well-known national figure in the Fine Gael party.  Co Kerry native Mr Frank Quilter is also among a number of ten donors listed as having donated €1,000 each to Ms Creighton campaign in 2007.

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Frank Rafter Art Exhibition To Open In The Source Thurles

Fr-Rafter

Artist Frank Rafter.

M/s Lorraine Treacy, Thurles Library, The Source, Cathedral Street, Thurles,  Co Tipperary, reports:-

An exhibition of the selected artistic work of former Thurles dentist and keen environmentalist Mr Frank Rafter will go on display in the Source exhibition centre on Wednesday next November 5th at 7.00 p.m.

Presented to the public by Thurles Library and entitled ‘From the Edge,’ the exhibition will give an idea of how Frank’s work has progressed over recent years; from mainly painting through a return to drawing and on to printmaking, which is now this artists main preoccupation.

This exciting exhibition will also feature some of the books that Frank has made; these being artists’ books which he has made and books of his photographic work which document some of his very welcome obsessions.

Frank says, “Much of my drawing and print work is concerned with the concept of binary opposites, such as smoothness, rust, growth, decay, glitz, dereliction;, all derived initially from the idea of edge – a persistent obsession in my thinking.”

The area of artists’ books exerts a deep fascination for Frank as they unite his two great interests, art and literature.

The exhibition will run from Wednesday 5th to Tuesday 25th of November 2014 during normal library opening hours and later on at selected performance evenings.

For further information contact Thurles Libraries’ M/s Ann Marie Brophy –  Tel: 0504-29720.

A visit to this upcoming exhibition is truly not to be missed and comes highly recommended.

Remember:  Wednesday next November 5th at 7.00 p.m.

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Press Realise By Thurles Right2Water Committee

Thurles Demonstration For Our Right To Water

Suir

Mr Michael Lange, newly appointed Chairman of Thurles Right2water Committee reports.

Formation of the Thurles Right2Water committee.

“I am pleased to announce the formation of the Thurles right2water committee. The committee has been formed as a cross party, non-political forum to provide voice and direction for the people of Thurles against current unfair and inequitable water charges.
The water charges in their current form drastically punish middle and low income earners while having almost no effect on higher earners. Since the introduction of austerity many families and households around the country, particularly in Tipperary, have struggled to make ends meet.

During the winter many households already have to choose between heat or food on a daily basis. I believe that the water charges represent a huge injustice on these people and indeed on all of the people of Ireland. When “pay by metering” for water is introduced will households now also have to choose which child’s turn it is to have a shower on a given day? For me the constant slide in the standard of living experienced since the onset of austerity has taken a leap into the obscene.
We simply cannot afford to pay any more. Health care, property tax, universal social charge, education fees increasing, road tax, stealthy reduction of tax credits in the budget of 2013, the list goes on and on. We are already struggling to keep our heads above water. There is no more blood to be squeezed out of this stone.

We constantly hear about a recovery in the country at the moment, I ask a recovery for whom? Yes jobs are returning into the economy, but what standard of living do we now have as a result of the payment from those jobs? Look to your own lives, your own households, your own families, your own weekly finances and ask yourself are you part of this recovery? Look at your own access to services here in Thurles and in county Tipperary and ask yourself are you feeling the recovery, has austerity ceased to be harsh on you?

We already pay for our water. The Irish people pay 1.2 billion Euro per year for water through general taxation. At the last attempt to introduce water charges in Ireland between 1994 and 1997 there were extensive national protests. There was also a national boycott campaign. The then government capitulated to the pressure the people of Ireland imposed on them. Instead of charges they increased the rate of motor tax and VAT and diverted these extra funds towards local authorities to fund the cost of providing water to the public.

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