Local Weather

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Irish Wolfhounds Return To Bunratty Castle & Folk Park.

Affia Hussey, aged 4 years, walks with newly arrived Irish Wolfhounds, Rían and Míde, who today took up permanent residence on the grounds of Bunratty Castle and Folk Park.
Photograph by Eamon Ward

Unlike the town of Thurles, Co. Tipperary, which has allowed its elected representatives to succeed in eradicating most of the town’s history; Bunratty village in Co. Clare, has reinstated a small but attractive piece of their medieval history, for the benifit of its well established tourist trade.

The sight of Irish wolfhounds roaming the paths and laneways of Bunratty Castle and Folk Park has now once again been reinstated.

Among the largest of all breeds of dog, Irish wolfhounds were regular guests at Bunratty Castle from the early days of its medieval banquets in the 1960’s. The dogs would roam the great hall and dining areas as would have been the custom in medieval times at the castle.

12-week-old Rían, (Irish meaning King), and 1-year-old Míde, (latter named after the 5th province of Ireland in Celtic times), today took up permanent residence on the grounds of the famous County Clare visitor attraction. They both replace Meabh and Saoirse, the two previous resident wolfhounds at the castle.

Breeder Mr James Hussey of Cúdáráth Irish Wolfhounds, delivered the dogs to Bunratty Castle and Folk Park today, where they were welcomed by farm manager Mr Niall Moloney.

According to Mr Aodhagan Behan, Operations Manager at Bunratty Castle and Folk Park, “Bunratty Castle is the most complete and authentic medieval fortress in Ireland, and no 15th century Castle is complete without these iconic and noble dogs.”
“These noble creatures were regular guests at the Bunratty Castle from the early days of the medieval banquets in the 1960s and therefore it is only fitting that they make a welcome return to this iconic fortress in the same year that the castle world famous medieval banquets celebrate 60 years in operation,” he added.

Mr Niall Moloney, farm manager at Bunratty Castle and Folk Park, explained that Irish wolfhounds are known for being gentle, friendly and very intelligent, and they inhabited Ireland long before the arrival of Christianity and the written word. He stated, “For many visitors, especially children, the sight of wolfhounds wandering throughout the site is the highlight of their visit. We are grateful to Cúdáráth Irish Wolfhounds for their support, and we look forward to hosting Rían and Míde for many years to come”.


Thurles Weather Forecast For Coming Weekend.

Weather-wise, here in Thurles, Co. Tipperary today Thursday, July 27th, we saw a mix of light cloud and sunny spells, with just isolated passing showers and moderate west to south-west winds. with Temperatures reached between 18°C and 20°C.

With temperatures reaching 20°C today In Thurles, honey bees took the opportunity to move house.
Picture: G. Willoughby (27th July, 2023)

Tonight should see a continuation of mixed clear spells and scattered showers with lowest temperatures of 9°C to 13°C, with light westerly winds changing to become more southerly.

Tomorrow morning, Friday, July 28th, we should awaken again, to sunny spells and scattered showers. However, it will turn cloudier at times during the afternoon and evening, as a band of more frequent and heavier showers moves from the west. We can expect highest temperatures of 16°C to 20°C, with light to moderate south to southwest winds.

On Friday night, rain showers should ease early with clear spells developing, however, more frequent heavy showers will move in from the west later. Lowest temperatures of 10°C to 12°C.

On Saturday, we can expect blustery winds, again with sunny spells and scattered showers, some possibly turning heavy with slightly higher temperatures of 17°C to 20°C.
Similar weather is expected across Tipperary on Saturday night, again with lowest temperatures of 10°C to 12°C, and with moderate westerly winds.

On Sunday, again we can expect sunny spells and occasional scattered showers, with highest temperatures of 17°C to 20°C with a more south-westerly breeze.

So if you plan to be out and about in the open air, enjoying the beautiful scenery in Co. Tipperary this weekend, our best advice to you is to pack that lightweight rain jacket and or an umbrella.


Forget Images Of Stonewalls, Donkeys & Wild Sheep Blocking Green Wide Open Spaces.

Let’s be real here, the Irish postcard era of dry stonewalls; mountain sheep blocking narrow roads against a background of green wide open spaces; bare footed children escorting forlorn overladen donkeys, latter carrying creels of turf; same can no longer be effectuated by our Irish National Tourism Development Authority.
We have slid decidedly backwards, as a small island from this once attractive rural tourism marketing ploy, selling relaxation, peace and solitude. This so called relaxed way of life has for many years been consigned to old God Almighties time.

Dublin derives its name from the Irish “dubh linn” – meaning “black-pool”, but recent years and given recent events, it is understandable why some may view Dublin City Centre as more of a “cess-pool” at the moment. Dublin City Centre has lost its charm – and then some. The celebrated central thoroughfares and winding pavements we used to so celebrate in countless spoken verse and lyrics are now more synonymous with anti-social behaviour, faceless boarded shop facades, crime, litter, homelessness, drug use and even violence, generated in many cases by greed.

Same is thanks to a small group of teenage thugs, permitted by their negligent and often absent parents, to roam our capitol’s city streets, exempt from punishment and from the injurious consequences of their purposeful actions.

An area on Stradavoher Street, Thurles, near the scene where a number of homes were destroyed by mysterious fire, over the more recent past.
The number shown as 666 is identified as the ‘Number of the Beast’ as mentioned in the Book of Revelation (Chapter 13, verse 18) and is explicit in anti-Christian subcultures.

Sadly, in a travel advisory warning this week, the US Embassy in Dublin, refers to what they call “a number of recently reported incidents”, while stating that travellers should immediately safeguard their valuables e.g. credit cards, bank cards, passports etc., while refraining from carrying large amounts of cash.

The Dublin US Embassy also encourages all their American visiting citizens to be aware of their actual surroundings while visiting in Ireland, especially when travelling in unfamiliar places; attending crowded locations and empty streets; and especially if obliged to walk alone, during the hours of darkness.

Sitting opposite Thurles Cathedral, latter building one of the few remaining tourist attractions in Thurles not removed by local councillors, is the privately owned eyesore and blot on the landscape, known as the Munster Hotel.

But it is not just Dublin streets. Here in areas of Thurles also, the broken windows theory has become totally ignored.

For those not familiar with the “Broken Windows Theory”, same states that visible signs of disorder and misbehaviour in an environment will encourage further disorder and misbehaviour, leading to the committal of further both minor and serious crime. This principle amply explains the decay of neighbourhoods.

Thinly layered, lightly printed cloth banners, say ‘Welcome To Thurles‘, I think!

Meanwhile, in an attempt to make tourists feel at home, (same having inadvertently lost their way while travelling to South Tipperary, to find themselves in this jobless conurbation called Thurles); four thinly layered, lightly printed cloth banners, welcoming people to the Liberty Square area of this potholed town, have long since become entangled around their sky hooks, courtesy of our light summer breezes.
One wonders how much travelling expenses were generated by the members who met to sanction this cheap tourism fresh approach.

One notes too that our town’s neglect and potholes are a reflection of poor management at County Council and Urban District level. Thurles, despite some ills, is still a town worth visiting for its history, arts, sports and much more. Like so many other urban areas, however, it risks further deterioration and destruction, if we accept ‘broken windows’ and become complacement about the failures and inadequacies of our elected community leaders and County Councils.

The solution to this growing problem of anti-social behaviour is not just placing extra Gardaí on our streets. It includes our justice system ensuring to punish wrong doers as well as local communities co-operating with Gardaí, who for the most part are more than anxious to facilitate change.


Camera Drones Dangerous Nuisance In Inexperienced Hands.

Drone Invades Privacy Of Private Funerals At St. Patrick’s Graveyard, Thurles.

Dublin Airport drone incidents saw a number of incursions of drones into Irish airspace in early 2023, causing huge disruption to airport operations.

Today we read that owners of drones are being warned not to fly their devices close to livestock, particularly when same are located grazing in coastal areas, following the mysterious stampeding of 30 yearling bullocks over a cliff in west Co. Clare.
The herd of cattle in this case are believed to have been spooked by the continuous low humming sounds made by a low flying Drone, resulting in the animals stampeding over a steep cliff, close to Doonbeg village, Co. Clare, between July 9th and July 11th 2023.

Here in Thurles, in the recent past, a Drone complete with a 1080 HD camera was being used to invade the privacy of private funerals, happening here in St. Patrick’s Cemetery, Moyne Road, Thurles.
We understand that Gardaí, aided by funeral attendees, quickly tracked down the owner of this device, leading to the temporary seizure of the apparatus, and the destruction of video footage in relation to at least one such videoed incident.

Local residents have expressed anger that Thurles Municipal District authorities are failing to introduce or indeed implement bye-laws, with regards to not just camera drone usage, but also the consumption of large amounts of alcohol and more recently the barbaric sacrifice of a gentle, harmless, trapped animal, all of which were permitted to occur in St. Patrick’s Graveyard, Thurles.


Excuses By Tipp Co. Council’s Chief Executive & Thurles District Administrator.

For the benefit of Ms Sharon Scully (Thurles Municipal District Administrator), may we confirm that the blocked drain outside of McCabes Pharmacy, on Kickham Street, Thurles, has caused major flooding yet again today, (see image hereunder), photographed also today, May 11th, 2023.

May we also confirm that the blocked drain featured in the same picture hereunder, can be found east of the Pallottine College entrance, on Kickham Street, Thurles. Same has been blocked since we contacted you on February 20th, 2022. For confirmation see picture No 2. [bottom left HERE ].

Kickham Street, Thurles Co. Tipperary.

There are only 3 drain ports positioned on the lower south side of Kickham Street, two of which are blocked, with the water cascading like a river down the northside of the street, courtesy of the inefficiency of Transport Infrastructure Ireland (TII). Hereunder, see Video which was also communicated to local councillors and officials on Feb.13th 2022.

If you need further proof of the inefficiency of your office, see video hereunder, first published Feb.12th 2022:-

Dear Readers; at the request of Ms Sharon Scully, (Thurles Municipal District Administrator) the communication addressed to both Ms Scully and Mr Joe MacGrath (Chief Executive, Tipperary Co. Co.) on Sun, 7th May is printed in full hereunder.

George Willoughby to Ms Sharon Scully (Thurles Municipal District Administrator) and Mr Joe MacGrath (Chief Executive, Tipperary Co. Co.) Sun, 7 May, 22:47

“Please see attached video of flooding on Cathedral Street, Thurles, which took place on Saturday last, May 6th.
Water flowed from No.12 Kickham Street unto Cathedral Street, with shores blocked at McCabes Pharmacy, Kickham Street, for the last 8 weeks, and at ‘The Source’ and Ursuline Convent, on Cathedral Street, for at least 4 weeks.

Please see a photograph of the damage caused to a drain outside the Ursuline convent front door, where work was recently undertaken by ‘Tar Stone’ has been fully lifted up by a water surge. See damage to roadway, same being further evidence of the sheer neglect of our town of Thurles.

Please also see the link; https://www.thurles.info/2023/05/06/wellingtons-necessary-when-traversing-newly-upgraded-e650000-bowes-corner/ .

Note up to 7:00pm today, flooding on pavement at Bowe’s corner has not subsided.

I will be highlighting further evidence of the neglect of Thurles, and continued money wasting, HERE this week, happening under both your watches and that of your “Executive Engineers”.

Signed: George Willoughby.

Wed, 10 May, 16:44 Ms Sharon Scully, to me

Dear Mr. Willoughby,

Thanks for your email below.
I can advise the following –

[A] The first photo is an Uisce Eireann excavation which is not the responsibility of Tipperary County Council. Please send a location associated with the photo so we could ensure it is communicated to Uisce Eireann for follow up.

[B] Picture number two would be normal after a flood event, whereby there is an accumulation on the gully from indiscriminate littering. It should be noted that there is regular street cleaning of footpaths and roads in Thurles town. Please send a location associated with the photo so we could ensure that it is presently clear.

[C] It would appear that picture number three is the same as picture number one Cathedral Street Video – all gullies in the town are on a rotation list for cleaning. However the network is susceptible to flash flooding of this nature. Locations as listed below will be examined.

[D] With regard to the video published on the Thurles Info website in relation to Bowes Corner – The contractor has not yet fully completed works to bring the gullies at the commencement of ramps up to surface level – these works will be completed in the coming weeks. In addition, at the aco-drain there was a temporary blockage to prevent excess grout from paving works entering the combined network – this has since being removed.

[E] Please confirm that you will publish the response of Tipperary County Council on the same website which published the video above to ensure that a full picture is conveyed.

Regards, Sharon.

George Willoughby, Wed, 10 May, 22:12 to Ms Sharon Scully (Thurles Municipal District Administrator) and Mr Joe MacGrath (Chief Executive, Tipperary Co. Co.)

Ms Scully,
Thank you for your reply to our email of May 7th 2023 instant at 22:55:

Note your reply will be published on all media outlets, used by Thurles.Info, as requested by you and in keeping with Mr MacGrath’s wishes, and as published HERE on April 20th last. We do this although our recent email correspondence to you both was not published publicly.
So in the interests of real openness and full transparency, it becomes necessary for us to publish all communications emanating both from Tipperary Co. Council; Thurles Municipal District Council and Thurles.Info, thus keeping our large readership up-to-date and fully informed as to what is transacted partially in secret.

Please now also let my readers & me have your thoughts regarding other issues shown via the following 3 links:-

[1] https://www.thurles.info/2023/04/22/possible-bus-shelter-for-thurles/.
What was the total cost of the full installation of the new carparks traffic barrier system including shelters, and CCTV cameras, same referred to as ‘Checkpoint Charlie’- and was there any money refunded following its hasty removal.

[2] https://www.thurles.info/2023/05/10/kickham-street-thurles-co-tipperary-saga-part-i/#comment-82959
When will repairs be undertaken on Kickham Street. Note: According to Councillor Ryan, (Littleton) same is due for reconstruction in September 2023.

[3] https://www.thurles.info/2023/05/07/thurles-taxpayers-tolerate-tipperary-co-councils-continuous-waste-of-finances/

Yours sincerely,
George Willoughby.

With regard to the four excuses and one request offered by Ms Scully above, (same identified by lettering attached by us; namely letters A, B, C, D & E,) we reserve the right to reply.

(A) The Uisce Eireann excavation is not an Uisce Eireann excavation, however if I am wrong; note that Tipperary Co. Council retains responsibility for Irish Water (Uisce Eireann) and queries continue to be accepted by the Water Services Section of the Tipperary Co. Council. So what is the issue in fixing the problem? Do they answer their phones?

(B) It is well noted that there is regular street cleaning of footpaths and roads in Thurles town, using a recently purchased mechanical street sweeper. Please give us a hint as to how this machine sweeps under parked cars, in order to reach ‘indiscriminate littering‘? It only has two brushes and no suction tube and is useful for gathering gravel every morning on Kickham Street.

(C) All three pictures sent refer to where flooding occurred- Cathedral Street. Note: I am not here to do the work of Thurles Municipal Council, you have paid employees to undertake such work. Quote by you “It would appear that all gullies in the town are on a rotation list for cleaning”.
Please explain why on the Mill Road, a short Distance from Councillor Mr Jim Ryan’s home, 3 blocked drains exist outside the new housing estate, all within the Thurles Municipal District boundary, same reported to you in Feb. 2022; leaving flood water to flow south down the Mill Road.
See Picture hereunder.

Blocked Drains on Mill Road confirmed in Feb. 2022 and photographed today, 11th May 2023, still blocked.

(C) No video was published by Thurles.Info relating to Bowe’s Corner. We did publish a picture of a blocked Aco-Drain. The surface here will not be lifted, if it is the Aco-Drain would not be needed as water would leach unto the roadway and into drains close by. The very existence of an Aco-Drain, demands a slight dip in the surrounding area to direct water. Perhaps the Aco-Drain is a bit central for those walking with high-heels, but this is the fault of the engineer’s drawings.
Any person who claims that the ‘temporary blockage‘ was to prevent excess grout (cement), from the paving works, entering the ‘combined network’, is a person who thinks you, Ms Scully, are easily fooled and I, George Willoughby, am an intellectually disabled individual. The ‘combined network’ on Friar Street has flooded at least once every year since I arrived in Thurles, some 45 years ago, as local businesses will attest.
The people (employees) who worked on that upgrade at Bowe’s Corner are extremely, highly skilled, unlike the consultants and engineers responsible for its overall design, and the elected councillors who publically came out and supported same officials.

The link to this post has been forwarded to Ms Sharon Scully (Thurles Municipal District Administrator) and Mr Joe MacGrath (Chief Executive, Tipperary Co. Co.) at their request.

The Kickham Street, Part 2 Saga will be published tomorrow.