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The Kilkenny


Friday 26 March 2021

Eoin Larkin Corner stone of greatest team  See page 16

Tel: 056 777 1463 E: sales@kilkennyobserver.ie W: kilkennyobserver.ie

Food & Drink All New: Come Dine With Me!  See page 20




The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021

The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021




The Kilkenny


Little relief in sight after Easter, as toll stays high JUST a limited lifting of Level 5 restrictions is expected when the Government announces its decisions, which come into effect on Easter Monday. On the advice of NPHET, it is understood there will merely be a tweaking of the current regulations, with no end in sight for pubs and hairdressers or other non essential retailers. The considerations on the table are now limited to the following five: • A lifting of the 5km travel limit • Expanding limited outdoor gatherings, beyond one other household • A phased reintroduction of construction • Sports and training be allowed for children • And allow adults’ outdoor non-contact sports like golf and tennis The middle of May might see a lifting of restrictions for hairdressers. But leading health officials have said it will be “some time” before vaccination can allow social restrictions to be eased in Ireland. They have also warned that we are in a “very different situation” than we were in Spring 2020 because of mutations of the virus, and that we cannot expect progress to be made at a “similar rate”. The message came in the newly-released NPHET minutes, which covered the meeting on February 18 and in which NPHET expressed serious concerns over a further surge in infections, and said that case numbers remained “extremely worrying”. The note reads: “The preliminary modelling presented suggests that there will be a continuing need for restrictions to suppress transmission until such time as a sufficient proportion of the population is vaccinated to effectively suppress transmission by immunity alone. “It was further noted that while EVERY FRIDAY

emerging data shows that vaccines will play a critical role in the management of Covid-19, it is simply too early to predict what the full impact of vaccines will be. Uncertainties and unknowns in relation to variants and vaccine effectiveness and uptake levels were noted.” Meantime, HSE Chief Executive Paul Reid has said that “everyone over the age of 70 will have been offered their first vaccine dose by the middle of April”. The final phase of schools reopening is set to commence after the Easter break on April 12 when secondary school students from 1st year to 4th year are due to go back. Tanaiste Leo Varadkar has discussed the issue in a live Q&A video on his instagram, where he assured parents that students “definitely are” returning to classrooms after the Easter break. The Tanaiste said this assurance was despite the recent spike in cases. “Numbers aren’t looking great but I’m confident that schools will stay open and that secondary schools will be fully back on April,” he said. However, those students sitting oral exams in the Leaving Cert will now be retired to wear a mask as will their teachers. The number of schools hit with at least one case of Covid19 took a significant jump in the week ending March21 - the latest figures available - according to the latest figures from the HSE. Public health teams conducted mass testing in 183 schools, up 70% on 108 the week before. There was a doubling, from 35 to 71, in the number of tested childcare facilities.

* See Covid Update in P14 * Other coverage, P4 & P8

The Kilkenny


Hurling legend praises youth Hurling legend Henry Shefin has paid tribute to the “brilliant” young people of Kilkenny and Carlow supporting their communities throughout the pandemic. See: https://www. facebook.com/GardaS%C3%ADoch%C3%A1naKilkennyCarlow-13738976690739

Vying for an Oscar Kilkenny film Wolfwalkers has been nominated for an Oscar as best animated feature for the upcoming 93rd Academy Awards. See Page 6

Business fraud

Three goood reasons to raise a glass to Ballykeefe A UNIQUE collaboration between three local businesses marks the eagerly-awaited release of a new Kilkennyproduced whiskey. Ballykeefe Distillery, Ireland’s first eco-friendly family farm distillery, has launched its first pot still Irish whiskey. The distillery, which was built in 2016 and began production in 2017, has released for sale 350 bottles at Cask Strength and 700 bottles at 46% Abv drawn from seven casks of the premier distillations.

It’s come about through a collaboration between Ballykeefe, Kilkenny Crystal and the Wine Centre. Each bottle has been hand-engraved by Kilkenny Crystal and mounted in a presentation box with a certificate of authenticity. The cask strength bottles come with a larger presentation box which includes two hand cut crystal glass tumblers, uniquely designed in partnership with Kilkenny Crystal. The Wine Centre has been chosen as the exclusive in-store and

online retail partner for the limited release. “I am delighted we are working with the team at Kilkenny Crystal,” said Morgan Ging, owner of Ballykeefe Distillery (pictured). “Their exceptionally talented craftsmen are among a very few who are hand cutting crystal in Ireland. The Wine Centre in Kilkenny has been chosen as our sole retail partner, for this release, due to our longstanding relationship and their expert knowledge.”

Up to 35% of Irish SMEs have reported being targeted by fraudsters in the past 12 months, according to new research conducted by Bank of Ireland. See Page 8

Easter’s mystery

To argue that being religious is incompatible with being a scientist does not cut it, writes Paul Hopkins, when you consider that the father of the Big Bang was actually a Catholic priest. See Page 18

INSIDE News......................................... P3-38 Fact Of The Matter......................P4 Clair Whitty...................................P4 Covid Update............... .............. P14 Food & Drink...............................P20 Bianca Rallis................................P22 Science & Wellbeing.................P24 Lockdown Streaming................P26 Travel & Leisure.........................P37


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The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021



Fact Of The Matter PAUL HOPKINS

If Jack’s alright, what about the rest of us? YOU know the scenario. You phone someone to check if all is good and they unload for a full 30 minutes and never once ask how you are. Or the moment when you realise someone in your life is mostly take and no give; who constantly asks favours of you but when you’re in a fix they are conveniently busy. What is it with people being selfish? The coronavirus has not only decimated populations and placed lives on anxious hold but it has also been a test of character, a test many are failing. People have unlawful house parties. Covert hair salons are in operation. Wanton youths are planning secret raves for Paddy’s Weekend, people are not wearing masks in the supermarket, and the false prophets are declaring the whole shebang a global conspiracy, Covid-19 no more than a bad flu. My psychologist friend defines selfishness as two-sided. “Being concerned excessively or exclu-

sively with oneself,” he tells me over a socially-distant phone call, “and having no regard for the feelings or needs of others.” But he argues that it is to some extent natural to be selfish. We are, after all, at the centre of our own worlds. A certain amount of selfishness can be healthy, in reminding us to take care of ourselves so as we can take care of others. Even selfless caring is selfish if done to make you feel good about yourself, which is no bad thing. The philosopher Thomas Hobbes argued way back that self-interest was the “most fundamental human motivation”. However, acting out of self-interest is not necessarily the only thing on our minds. History — indeed, the pandemic — has shown that human behaviour can be motivated as much by altruism and moral considerations. So, at what point does healthy self-care and the right amount of self-love become self-

ishness? Seemingly, it is all down to ‘emotional intelligence’ and empathy. Some have little or no such intelligence. My psychologist friend says: “One symptom of low emotional intelligence is the tendency to be self-absorbed or exclusively concerned with one’s own thinking, feeling, needing and wanting, instead of the thoughts, feelings, needs and wants of others.” Infuriating as selfish people’s behaviour may be, there is the argument that perhaps those of us who know better — in short, those of us with emotional intelligence — should take a compassionate view of why some people behave in such a way. My friend John Campbell once said to me: “Never judge a man coming through the door until you know what kind of day he has had.” Psychology suggests that people who are ‘selfish’ tend to have been raised in environ-

ments in which their feelings, thoughts and needs were not recognised or valued. We don’t all get the same breaks in life or the same care and attention. All of which likely explains why the flaunting of the pandemic guidelines — and subsequently cases of Covid-19 — largely take place the other side of the railway tracks where the social and economic dynamic is below par. Dostoyevsky wrote: “The world says: ‘You have needs — satisfy them. You have as much right as the rich and the mighty. Don’t hesitate to satisfy your needs; indeed, expand your needs and demand more.’ This is the worldly doctrine of today. And they believe that this is freedom...” But is knowing that such people just don’t know any better an argument for cutting them some slack? An argument for lifting some of the Level 5 restrictions? Are old people being

The pandemic has also been a test of character, a test many are failing...

selfish about the care-free needs of young people wishing to congregate on the street corner? Go to a match? And are the young being selfish in their argument to keep the oldies cocooned and let the rest of the world get on with it? If truth be told most of us probably fall somewhere on a sliding scale of selfless to selfish moments, depending on what time of day it is and what that bastard of a rogue microbe is up to. “To be happy,” wrote Albert Camus, “we must not be too concerned with others”, while Nietzsche contended that “most people are far too occupied with themselves to be malicious”. I wonder, though, where does one ‘right’ end, say, the right not to wear masks, and the right of everyone else to good health begin? At what point does my right not to get infected outweigh the right of another to pursue their life come what may?

A.Vogel Atrogel – Arnica gel for pain relief in stiff muscles and joints CLAIR WHITTY

MARCH is here and what a great month to get out into the garden or back to outdoor fitness. This of course will bring some of you great joy to be doing the things you love to do outdoors. But if you’ve been over enthusiastic you could end up with sore muscles and stiff shoulders after hours spent doing what you love. Not to worry, nature can help. A.Vogel Atrogel is an ideal product to have in your cupboard for times when you do too much in the garden, after a long run, or cycle. Most of you will be familiar with arnica tablets, a homeopathic remedy commonly taken internally to help improve healing time of bruises and soreness after injury. Atrogel is a traditional licenced herbal medicinal product made from extracts of fresh Arnica flowers and is an easy-to-apply non-greasy gel. People use it for the symptomatic relief of muscular aches, joint pains and stiffness. As well as easing soreness after gardening, it can be used for sporting injuries such as joint sprains and strains. An excellent choice for osteoarthritic knee or

hip pain, or any pain associated with arthritis. Essentially, it’s a great gel to relieve any of life’s soreness associated with injury or strain.

Other things you can do to help muscle pain and to relieve soreness is to soak in a bath with some magnesium flakes. Or take a magnesium supplement. Turmeric works well to reduce inflammation; you may have a supplement at home. Or simply add some extra turmeric powder in your cooking. Omega 3 oils will help too, you could up your oily fish consumption or take an Omega 3 oil like Eskimo Omega 3 Fish Oil. Or a vegan alternative like Testa Algae Oil. Anyone can use Atrogel® Arnica gel to relieve pain and bruising including adults, children, and the elderly. If you are pregnant or breastfeeding please check with your healthcare advisor before using. You can use it alongside painkilling medication. Don’t use it on broken skin. So, make the most of the longer and brighter days to get out in your garden or out for your exercise; let nature provide solutions when you need them with A.Vogel Atrogel. For more information on pain and stiffness call into to see us at Natural Health Store or give us a call. We are happy to help. Email: info@naturalhealthstore.ie Phone: 0567764538 Market Cross Shopping Centre, Kilkenny

The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021






The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021


Now, it’s an Oscar nomination for Wolfwalkers THE Irish animated film Wolfwalkers has been nominated for an Oscar as best animated feature for the upcoming 93rd Academy Awards. Wolfwalkers was created by Kilkenny animation studio Cartoon Saloon. This is the fourth time that the studio has been nominated in this category and the

movie is up against Onward, Over the Moon, A Shaun the Sheep Movie: Farmageddon and Soul. The Chief Executive of Screen Ireland Désirée Finnegan congratulated the company on their Oscar nod. “Our warmest congratulations to directors Tomm Moore and Ross Stewart,

screenwriter Will Collins, and all at Cartoon Saloon on their Academy Award nomination today,” she said. “Wolfwalkers is a triumph of creative collaboration and Irish storytelling, and we are exceptionally proud to have supported the film. “The consistent and continued success of Cartoon

Saloon’s work is testament to Ireland’s thriving animation industry, and indicative of the creative talent working tirelessly to produce powerfully engaging stories for audiences, both at home and around the world.” The awards will take place on April 25 and can be seen in Ireland the next night.

Town plans €370k. paves the Way for a are rolled major boost for tourism out for six local areas THE County Council has launched a ‘Health Check’ consultation on new town plans for six towns and villages including Castlecomer, Urlingford, Johnstown, Goresbridge, Thomastown, and Mullinavat. The health check will also seek to establish town teams in each location to shape and take forward these plans. Cathaoirleach of Kilkenny County Council, Cllr. Andrew McGuinness, said: “The study will analyse the strengths and weaknesses of each settlement based on factors such as the range and quality of activities in the town, its mix of uses, its accessibility to people living in the area, and its general appearance and safety.” As part of these health checks, Kilkenny County Council is running an online survey at www.mykilkennytown.ie  that aims to consider the needs and aspirations of each local community. The survey also calls for early expressions of interest for people to join their local town team. The survey will close on Friday, April 2. A series of dedicated online information events will be held in April to discuss the

project with each of the communities in the towns and villages. In light of Covid-19 restrictions, the sessions will take place digitally, via Zoom, on the following dates: • Thomastown - Tuesday 06 April 2021, 6pm – 7pm • Castlecomer - Wednesday 07 April 2021, 6pm – 7pm • Johnstown - Thursday 08 April 2021, 6pm – 7pm • Urlingford - Friday 09 April 2021, 6pm – 7pm • Mullinavat - Monday 12 April 2021, 6pm – 7pm • Goresbridge - Tuesday 13 April 2021, 6pm – 7pm In addition to the survey a social media campaign is also live inviting members of the public to share photos or videos of their local town and village using the hashtags #makestheplace #wasteofspace. The photos can include spaces, landmarks and buildings within the six towns and villages involved in the Health Checks, and will inform part of this consultation. For further information, visit  www.mykilkennytown. ie. Contact the project team by emailing  Kilkenny@turleyplanning.ie  or calling the Freephone consultation hotline: 1800-010101.

FUNDING has been given the green light to connect the South Leinster Way to the Wicklow Way, which will prove a major tourism boost for Kilkenny, More than €370,000 has been invested to connect the two hiking trails, which will create an uninterrupted 236km of walk and cycle ways, starting in Carrick-on-Suir, crossing through Kilkenny and finishing in Marley Park in Dublin. The 5km connection between Kildavin in Carlow at the top of the South Leinster Way and Clonegal

Entries are welcome from individuals or groups, fishing clubs, youth clubs, centres and projects are all invited to take part. The competition is open to everyone over 18 years of age. If your video includes anyone aged under 16 years of age, only a parent/guardian may

The South Leinster way meanders for more than 50km through Kilkenny taking in Graiguenamanagh, Inistioge, Mullinavat and Piltown along the way. Conrming the €371,250 grant for the link project through the Outdoor Recreation Scheme, Tourism Min-

ister Catherine Martin TD, said: “Outdoor recreation and activities play a key role in the development of sustainable tourism nationwide. “These projects will encourage tourists and locals alike to experience the unique Irish countryside and natural environment.”

New postgraduate courses at Carlow College TWO new Level 9 postgraduate programmes have been launched by Carlow College, St Patrick’: a Master of Arts and a Postgraduate Diploma in Irish Regional History. These are 18 – 24 month part-time, evening programmes, which begin in September 2021 and are aimed at graduates seeking to further their study at a more advanced level or ac-

So, what’s the catch with fishing video competition? INLAND Fisheries Ireland (IFI) has launched a ‘Why I love to fish’ video competition as part of Go Fishing Week, 2021.  IFI is asking people in Kilkenny and nationwide to submit a short video of their fishing adventures and to tell them what fishing means to them.

on the Carlow Wexford border at the start of the Wicklow Way will create the longest uninterrupted trail in Ireland, further than the 215km Kerry Way.

submit the content. The overall winner will receive fishing tackle to the value of €100 and there will also be prizes for runners up and special categories. The closing date for entries to ‘Why I love to fish’ is Friday, April 9.  See www.fisheriesireland.ie/lovefishing.

celerate their careers within key sectors. The programmes are open to applicants who already have a level 8 degree with a minimum second-class honours grade 2 or its equivalent and those who hold a degree at level 7 with evidence of relevant career practice for a minimum period of three years. The highly practical pro-

grammes will enable students to acquire new skills and gain advanced knowledge on historical themes, cultural heritage and oral history. The course content offers a challenging and rewarding subject range that will encourage new research. Academics from within Carlow College’s History department span a huge array of historical backgrounds

from Irish and European to Medieval History, ensuring students on the programmes can expect wide ranging disciplinary, interactive and participatory teaching styles. Upon completion of the programme(s) the degrees are awarded by the Institute of Technology Carlow and students will also have access to library facilities at the Institute.

The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021




Music Generation Clare, Kilkenny vocal educator in action in one of our primary schools

Rithim Glasa - Jeremy Hickey, Tom Duffy, Mark Colbert

Music Generation Kilkenny is forging forward in 2021 with a great line-up of programmes and events across schools and the community in Kilkenny City and County

By: Sinéad Blanchfield Music Development Officer, Music Generation Kilkenny   E: sinead.blanchfield@ kilkennycarlowetb.ie  

THE mission of Music Generation is to transform the lives of children and young people by giving them access to the breadth of high-quality performance music education, enabling them to develop their creativity, reach their full potential, achieve selfgrowth and contribute to their personal development within a vibrant music community. “We want to make sure that everyone, whatever their background, gets access to music tuition.” Bono, U2 Since its inception, the programme in Kilkenny has grown and developed offering programmes of performance music Education in schools and in the community. I was appointed to the role of Music Development Officer for Music Generation Kilkenny in February 2019. Prior to my appointment I had been travelling extensively abroad performing as a professional Opera singer. I grew up in Kilkenny where I started my life in music and I was delighted to return to my hometown to take up this important role. I feel passionate about nur-

turing young talent and I felt that I could bring my experience as a performer and educator to the role in a practical way. I am proud of our young musicians and our Musician Educators who took centre stage in the recent virtual St. Patricks Day Festival Kilkenny presenting two performances especially created for the festival. First up was our young Uilleann Pipers with master Uilleann Pipers Pádraig Butler, Mick Foley and Leonard Barry. The weekly online sessions since last Summer have given these young pipers a lifeline at a time when in-person musicmaking has stopped. Their performance was showcased during the festival. Rithim Glasa highlighted the talents and skillset of three of our Musician Educators and drumming luminaries Jeremy Hickey (R.S.A.G, Rhythm Makers), Tom Duffy (RhythmRiot) and Mark Colbert (Damien Dempsey, Black

Toddler Music Workshop

DJ Delaney Young Uilleann Piper

Bank Folk) who performed an original and uplifting drumming piece composed especially for the St. Patrick’s Day Festival. Both performances can be seen on our youtube channel. MAKING A MUSICAL AND SOCIAL CONNECTION: In February this year I was inspired to create and offer some additional FREE workshops to all primary schools that weren’t currently engaged in our programmes. In light of the changed and changing world, continued lockdowns and restrictions, it came to the fore that children’s social, creative and developmental needs had been curtailed and reduced significantly. I wanted to offer something to the community that would enable our young children to express their best possible selves through music and creativity in a fun and engaging way. Our skilled musician educator team have paired up to deliver the exciting and engaging weekly sessions to whole class groups, initially at home and then over the whiteboard when they returned to school in March. The children

are enjoying body percussion, movement, musical games, junk drumming from junior infants up to sixth class. Musician Educator Clare Kilkenny, vocal educator on the team said “this is a wonderful way to enrich and inspire primary school children with high quality and fun performance music education during lockdown and also helping to engage socially with these wonderful young people in our county. The pairing of tutors is a brilliant opportunity for us to support, encourage, learn and deliver the best skills we have as experienced musicians” We received a huge response to these workshops! Over 20 schools came on board to accept our free sessions and we are delivering the programme to 2,441 children. Speaking about the impact of the programme on pupils Principal Niall Bergin said, “We are delighted to be taking part in the Music Generation Programme. Despite the difficult circumstances we find ourselves in, the extremely professional tutors are delivering an engaging, dynamic, creative and fun music

programme to our pupils. The beauty of the programme is that it is accessible to all and little or no resources are needed to take part .The programme really adds to the atmosphere in our school and it is uplifting to see the children thoroughly enjoying the classes. Classes are pitched at an appropriate level for all ages and the staff here in CBS Primary School couldn’t recommend Music Generation Kilkenny highly enough”. EASTER OFFERINGS: Through partnership with Kilkenny County library we are developing a suite of online workshops throughout this year. ‘Crash, Bang & Wallop’ rhythm workshops return for more fun and rhythmic antics for age 6-12year olds over the Easter break. Primary school children - get your saucepans, boxes, shakers, sticks ready and any other junk drums you can find for this fun and engaging workshop. Saturday 3rd April. Early booking is advisable! Back by popular demand ‘Music for Toddlers’ with Karen McMahon – March 30th, 31st, April 1st at 11:15-12:00pm. Karen was featured in a series of toddler music videos produced for Kilkenny County Library Service in the Summer. These workshops are all about fun through song, dance and imagination. Music Generation Kilkenny’s musician educator, Karen, will have your toddlers moving, rocking, clapping, playing and listening in a friendly environment. Early booking is advisable! info@kilkennylibrary.ie or 056 7794160

CASTLECOMER RUMBLINGS: Building sustainable partnerships is vital for the success of Music Generation Kilkenny. I am delighted to have formed a partnership with Fóroige developing the Creative Music Space at the DRUM, MacDonagh Junction Shopping Centre. During this Thursday afterschool music hub, young people between the age of 8-18 have the opportunity to learn Drums, Guitar, Ukulele, Vocals. We will launch an after-school ‘Trad music hub and Trad ensemble’ in Castlecomer after the Easter break, in partnership with Foróige. This is a new and exciting opportunity for young traditional players of primary school age to get involved in weekly lessons and performance opportunities on the following instruments: Fiddle, Bodhrán, Flute, Whistle, Mandolin, Banjo and Concertina. The hub will start online and will move to the Courthouse in Castlecomer with the easing of restrictions. It’s all about giving access! Instruments will be available to rent for young players who want to take part but don’t have access to an instrument. Registration: musicgenerationkilkenny@kcetb.ie or message us on Facebook – (musicgenerationkilkenny)   Music Generation Kilkenny is part of Ireland’s national music education programme, initiated by Music Network and co-funded by U2, The Ireland Funds, the Department of Education and Skills and Local Music Education Partnerships. The programme seeks to transform the lives of children and young people ages 0-18 by creating access to high quality, affordable music tuition in their localities. Locally, the programme is led by Kilkenny and Carlow Education and Training Board in partnership with Kilkenny County Council.  



The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021


New line-up, new look for RTE’s Prime Time show A NEW Prime Time presenting team is coming to RTE as Miriam O’Callaghan is to be joined by presenters Sarah McInerney and Fran McNulty. Tuesday nights will see Sarah join Miriam in studio, with Fran and Miriam taking the helm every Thursday on RTÉ One. As the new presenting team take to screens beginning the week of April 6, there will also be

a refresh of RTÉ Prime Time with the unveiling of a brand-new look for the programme and studio. As Ireland’s most watched current affairs programme, RTÉ Prime Time has seen audiences increase in 2021 with an average of 341,000 watching each Tuesday and Thursday nights on RTÉ One. Richard Downes, Editor of RTÉ Prime Time, said: “As RTÉ

Prime Time changes and evolves, our new presenters will lead the mission to illuminate dark corners and ask the questions that matter to you.” Sarah McInerney co-hosts Drivetime on RTÉ Radio 1 on weekday evenings, a fast-moving current affairs programme which covers all the political and topical issues of the day. She has also previously pre-

sented RTÉ Radio 1’s Today programme and Late Debate. Before moving to RTÉ, Sarah was the host of Newstalk Drive, and was Political Correspondent with The Sunday Times for eight years. “RTÉ Prime Time was one of the shows that first sparked my interest in politics. It is a programme that has, for decades, been producing top class current affairs coverage,” said Sarah Mc-

Inerney. Fran McNulty is an awardwinning journalist who most recently held the role of Agriculture & Consumer Affairs Correspondent for RTÉ News. His appointment as a presenter sees him return to RTÉ Prime Time where he worked as a reporter for five years.  During his time with the programme he uncovered abuses in

the fishing industry, exposed significant issues in the agricultural and food production sectors and explored a range of issues within the insurance industry, including fraud. Fran McNulty said: “Now more than ever people need trusted journalism, we need people to ask the important questions and get underneath the many issues facing Ireland.”

Easing of car industry restrictions can help economy, say leaders THE motor industry has called on the Government to allow an easing on restrictions on April 5 for new and used cars sales, citing a national survey by Behaviour & Attitudes 75% of the people surveyed said they would be comfortable visiting car dealerships/garages when travel restrictions allowed. Car dealerships/garages were ranked first out of eight nonessential retail categories as the “most comfortable” to visit. The Society of the Irish Motor Industry (SIMI), along with industry leaders, has once again emphasised that motor retail was ready to open, when restrictions allowed. The SIMI said retail in the motor industry was different from other non-essential retail. The large size of dealerships, the low average footfall, the

ability to do business on a strict appointment-only basis and the option of displaying cars outside lended itself to social distancing and safe retailing, making car sales very low risk. “From a health and safety perspective, the industry has proven during the duration of the pandemic that showrooms can operate in a low-risk environment for their employees and customers,” a spokesperson said. Car sales had been particularly challenging for the industry over the past number of years, with a declining market since 2016. The first quarter of the year created 60% of the sales for the year. Without this period, the industry and the State would lose significant revenues. The President of SIMI, Gillian

Fanning, said: “The fact that people are now more reliant on private cars from a personal safety perspective, we request from the Government that we can open our sales operations from April 5, even if this is on a click and collect basis. The reopening of our sales operations is of critical importance to our industry and its related sectors.” The society’s Director General, Brian Cooke, said:  “With the improving weather and longer days, car sales can be transacted entirely in an outdoor setting. Balanced action by Cabinet is required to protect the future of our Industry, prevent further job losses and diminishing exchequer contributions. With over 40,000 people employed in the sector, it is crucial to the economy.”

Pandemic sees growth in fraud as one in three SMEs now targeted THE pandemic with its enforced work practice changes is exposing more small businesses to fraud, with new research by Bank of Ireland showing that more than a third (35%) of Irish SMEs have reported being targeted by fraudsters in the past 12 months, according to new research by Bank of Ireland. Emails (57%) and phone calls (53%) are the two channels most likely to be targeted by fraudsters, with staff emails (88%) being the most likely to be compromised or targeted. The research found that persistent fraud attacks are costing businesses significant sums of

money, with the average loss associated with frauds targeting SMEs standing at €3,992 in 2020. Despite this, 60% of SMEs who fell victim to fraud or attempted fraud in the past 12 months did not report it to their bank or Gardaí, with 23% reporting it to their business’s bank. Work practice changes due to Covid-19 is causing fraud concerns for SMEs with 19% feeling they are now more exposed to fraud. Brexit is also weighing on SMEs fraud concerns with more 11% feeling more exposed to fraud because of Brexit related business changes.

When it comes to fraud prevention, 73% of SMEs feel their business has adequate safeguards and processes in place, yet over three quarters (76%) report not completing staff training on business fraud in the past year.  Commenting on the research results, Edel McDermott, Head of Fraud at Bank of Ireland said:  “Over the past 12 months, and especially since the Covid-19 pandemic began, incidents of cybercrime and fraudulent activity affecting customers and businesses are a growing concern.”

Shakespeare study guides for Leaving Cert THE Department of Arts at Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT) has published a book of essays on Shakespeare’s The Tempest to support Leaving Certificate students in their English studies this academic year. The prescribed Shakespear-

ean texts for the Leaving Certificate 2020/21 are ‘The Tempest’ and ‘King Lear’, and The Tempest guide is published in addition to the essays on Shakespeare’s King Lear available on the WIT website on the BA Arts (Hons) degree page. Drawing on the expertise of

lecturers in the Department of Arts in the WIT School of Humanities, the essays explore a range of themes and techniques in The Tempest from characterisation and imagery to themes of power and the supernatural, and Shakespeare’s use of sound and dialogue in the text.

€300k. funding adds up for WIT’s global Math Week THE Waterford Institute of Technology’s (WIT) Calmast has been awarded €299,990 to continue the success of Maths Week, which takes place in October. Founded in 2006 at WIT, Maths Week quickly became the leading festival of its kind in the world. The announcement was made by Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science, Simon Harris, TD, as part of a national investment

of €5.2 million through the Science Foundation Ireland Discover Programme. The funding will support 49 public engagement and education initiatives that aim to improve public understanding of science, technology, engineering, and maths (STEM) and engage a wide audience of people with STEM topics. Coordinator of Maths Week, Calmast Director Eoin Gill said: “Maths Week Ireland is an annual festival promoting posi-

tive attitudes towards maths and highlighting the importance of maths in our lives. It is a collaborative partnership of organisations including all the universities, institutes of technology, along with professional bodies, visitor centres and more. It is co-ordinated by the highly experienced Calmast STEM EPE (education and public engagement) centre, which also has €150,000 funding from SFI to coordinate STEM engagement across the South East.

The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021






The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021


Reeling them in... from Katie Taylor to Mrs Brown’s Boys A NEW series of Reeling In The Years  will air on Sundays from April 11 on RTÉ One and RTÉ Player. From Katie Taylor to Kodaline, from  Mrs Brown’s Boys  to the marriage referendum, from ‘Fake News’ to Fidget Spinners, Reeling

specific year between in the Years showcases the stories and 2010 and 2019, combining contemporary the soundtrack of Ireland over the last chart hits with some of the most memorable modecade. ments in news, current Each half-hour affairs, sport and programme entertainment.   features a The incomparable Mrs B

This is the sixth series of Reeling in the Years, with the years from 1962 to 2009 covered to date. Reeling in the Years  is consistently one of RTE’s best-loved shows,  with its repeats regularly performing strongly in the ratings. The IFTA- nominated show

has also been voted the ‘most popular home-produced TV show ever’ in an RTÉ Guide poll of Ireland’s Top 100 TV shows. “The end of a decade is a natural time to look back. We made the Nineties series in 2000, the Noughties series in 2010, and

Tragic Rian’s pals raise up to €25k after 1,000 km run A GROUP of young men who set out to honour their friend who tragically died last year have just completed 1,000kms of combined running. TEN students from Carrickon-Suir’s Edmund Rice Secondary School have raised almost €25,000 in honour of their friend who tragically died last year. The money, raised in a completed 1,000kms of combined running in their ‘Run4Rian’ challenge, with go to Pieta House. The 10 friends from Counties Kilkenny, Tipperary and

Waterford decided to take up the 1,000km run challenge in memory of one of their best friends, Rian Anthony (17) from Piltown (pictured) who died last November. Rian’s death sent shockwaves through the community and among his many, many friends and school pals. Tributes to Rian came from far afield such was the affection in which he was held by so many. Rian was also a very talented student and sportsman, renowned for his performances on the hurling and rugby pitch. Shortly after Christmas, 10 of Rian’s friends came up with the idea of the Run4Rian which would see them run 1,000km over five weeks, 200km a week, to raise awareness of mental health in teenagers. The boys began their challenge during the midterm break last month and completed the challenge over the St Patrick’s the weekend. Those who took part in the challenge included Rian’s brother Darragh and Kilkenny Minor Hurler Braedon Wheeler, Glen Power, Kieran Barry, Billy O Callaghan, Conor McGowan, Aidan Friend, Neil Moriarty, Owen Collins, and Aidan Walsh.

Attacks may halt bus routes A KILKENNY City bus service faces possible closure after several attacks in which stones were thrown at the vehicles. The service has been hit five times this year alone and Gardaí say they are determined to bring to justice those involved in the frightening incidents. Several similar incidents occurred in 2020, almost a year since the much-needed service began. The majority of the bus users are elderly residents and commuters. Speaking on local radio station KCLRfm, Garda Inspector

Paul Donohoe said: “It’s really getting out of hand, and it’s frightening for those bus drivers, other motorists and truck drivers. “We will investigate until we get them, to get the safety of our bus drivers. ‘It’s just so dangerous and someone will be seriously injured if not killed from an accident. It scares me to think what could happen,” he told presenter Eimear Ni Bhraonáin. Gardaí are looking at CCTV footage and plain clothes officers have been boarding some of the buses while in service.

now we’re adding another 10 years to the collection,” said producer John O’Regan. “We’re pleased to offer viewers this latest selection of music and moments from RTÉ’s archives, starting Sunday April 11 on RTÉ One.”

At the helm: Kieran Conroy who has been appointed Nestlé Country Manager

Kilkenny’s Kieran to take helm at Nestle KILKENNY native Kieran Conroy has been appointed Nestlé Country Manager for Ireland. Mr Conroy assumes responsibility for Nestlé Ireland’s operations and its comprehensive portfolio of products. The Trinity College graduate has more than20 years’ experience in the consumer

goods and pharma sectors and has held a variety of senior management and leadership roles in Nestlé UK & Ireland. Mr Conroy was previously Head of Sales before becoming a Director of Nestlé Ireland while also sitting on the Nestlé UK & Ireland Sales Leadership Team. He

has been with Nestlé for 13 years, joining as a Customer Business Manager, During his career he also served as Country Category Manager for Purina Ireland. Mr Conroy said: “It is a very exciting time to take responsibility for leading the Nestlé business in Ireland at the world’s largest food and bev-

erage company. I am excited to continue to work closely with our world-class team based in Citywest, together with our valued customers.” Kieran Conroy is a graduate of Trinity College and the Dublin Institute of Technology with a Bachelor of Science in Business Management and Marketing Techniques.

Castlecomer solar farm gets green light AN extra five years has been granted to complete a large solar energy farm development in Co. Kilkenny. Kilkenny County Council has approved Power Capital Renewable Energy application to extend the previously grant-

ed planning permission to develop a 5MW solar farm on lands at Loan in Castlecomer. The 5MW solar farm, comprising photovoltaic panels on ground mounted frames was approved back in 2016, however, the development has not

been completed. The solar farm, to be built on the 14 hectares site will see the construction of four transformers, four auxiliary transformers, four inverters, a distribution network, a communications building and an

ESB substation. Power Capital recently received applied for and received a planning extension of five years on another solar farm development in Kilkenny – another 5MW farm at lands in Goresbridge.

The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021








HOW many of us would like to get out of the house more but find actually doing so a struggle? Today we’re going to look at free* phone apps you can use to encourage you to do just that and get a bit of exercise. The first I’m going to talk about are internet radio apps. Yes, there are some great stations available to us simply by tuning to the right frequency but the world is literally our oyster when we move off the dial and into cyberspace. Perhaps the easiest to use is TuneIn. With this app you simply type in the name of a favourite radio network and you’re good to go. Alternatively, you can use dropdown lists to search by location and see what takes your fancy. An alternative, and one which perhaps brings a bit more fun, is Radio Garden. Open this app up and you are presented with a globe of the world. You can literally travel planet Earth, or at least its radiowaves, by moving the

image of our planet and taking a bit more pot luck over what you find. Reminiscing about a great holiday? Why not return virtually by seeing what radio stations that city, region or country has to offer? Whether you’re running or walking you can entertain yourself on the go! The young at heart (and those who actually are!) who love hunting for treasure will get great enjoyment from Geocaching. Geocachers (amateur enthusiasts) have left little caches for you to find in all sorts of locations – and there are sure to be some near you. The app will lead you to approximate locations where these little boxes are hidden using your phone’s GPS settings. When you get close, you read the clues on the app and use them to hunt your target. Some caches are very small, some can be quite big and contain little mementos which you can keep (the idea is “you take one, you leave one of your own for the next person”) as proof of your discovery. There is a wide range of how difficult these little boxes are to find but all are fun, particularly if you go hunting with other people!

PlantSnap will encourage nature lovers to get outside. It allows you to take photos of flora and identify what it is. Ever wonder what that flower, bush or tree you walk past is? PlantSnap will tell you! Supernatural-enthusiasts are sure to like Zombies, Run! You are one of only a few people to have survived an epidemic of the living dead! There are 45 missions and 19 sidemissions which you must complete to save humankind! For those a little fainter of heart, kids (and many adults) will love Pokemon Go. There is a huge number of cute little characters for you to catch and you can even fight battles against other people! The great thing with all these apps is they will get you exercising, and looking forward to exercise, without even noticing it! *Whilst all of these apps can be used in free mode, some do have in-app purchases though none of these are necessary. Andrew McDonald, Hypnotherapist w w w . ki l ke n ny t h e ra p y . com 089 972 2991

The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021

The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021






The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021

Pandemic Update

6 tips for better sleep EOIN EVERARD

When humans and the virus variants can safely co-exist MOST countries tries throughout the world are seeing an increase in new Covid-19 cases as highly contagious variants continue to spread, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO). Some of these new strains, notably the Brazil and UK ones, are already in Ireland which may account for the daily numbers being infected remain stubbornly high. New cases worldwide increased by 8% in the last week, the fifth week in a row that the WHO has seen an increase in transmission, Maria Van Kerkhove, the agency’s technical lead for Covid-19, told reporters during a press briefing. Cases in Europe, where the highly contagious B.1.1.7 variant is rapidly spreading, increased by 12%, Van Kerkhove said. The WHO has also seen a 49% increase in cases in the Southeast Asia region, an 8% increase in the Eastern Mediterranean region and a 29% increase in the Western Pacific region, driven by an increase in infections in the Philippines and Papua New Guinea, she said. The Americas and Africa saw a “slight decline,” Van Kerkhove said, but she said the case numbers overall are “worrying.” “There is pressure to open up in many of these countries, and there are difficulties in people and individuals and communities to comply with proven control measures,” she said, adding that there has been a “slight increase” in deaths across the world. “We’re also seeing that vaccination distribution is uneven and inequitable.” The WHO’s comments come as health officials in Ireland and across the world grow concerned that reopening too quickly amid a rise of new, highly contagious variants could reverse progress in the global pandemic. Some countries, such as the US, have seen an increase in new Covid-19 cases even as they vaccinate millions of their citizens each day. The Expert Insights website at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health reports

expert immunologist Andy Pekosz as saying there is “some strong data from the UK that suggest the [variant of the] virus is more transmissible”. He said that to be certain it was the virus sequence changes that were causing this, “we need to see if this variant spreads as easily in other countries”. He said: “There are currently two theories about what, specifically, makes this strain more transmissible. One is that this variant virus is ‘stickier’, meaning it requires a smaller amount

A slight increase in deaths across the world... We’re also seeing that vaccination distribution is uneven and inequitable....

of virus to cause infection because it’s better at adhering to your cells. Another theory is that this variant causes people to harbour more virus particles in their noses and throats, which means more virus is expelled when people talk, cough, or sneeze.” Mr Pekosz said the lack of social distancing factors could help a more transmissible variant spread even further, but wearing a mask, ensuring physical distance, and hand washing would still help. Meanwhile, the roll-out of vaccines in Ireland has been slow amid growing criticism but evidence is emerging also that being vaccinated does not mean you will not become infected by Covid-19, in particular the new strains. In fairness, this has always been known by the medical world, though not often debated. By the end of January, a slow trickle of post-vaccination infections had begun in the US. These cases — discovered in people more than two weeks after they received their final Covid-19 shot — will likely continue to grow in number. But that’s absolutely no cause for concern. ‘Breakthrough infections’, which occur when fully vaccinated people are infected by the pathogen that their shots were designed to protect against, are an entirely expected part of any vaccination process. They are the ‘data points’ that keep vaccines from reaching 100% efficacy in trials; they’re simple proof that no inoculation is a perfect preventative. Even the jab for the annual winter flu is not 100% efficient. Furthermore, the post-vaccine sicknesses or side-effects documented so far seem to be mostly mild, reaffirming the idea that inoculations are powerful weapons against serious disease, hospitalisation, and death. The goal of vaccination isn’t eradication, but a détente in which humans and viruses coexist, with the risk of disease at a tolerable low.

GOOD sleep is essential for quality of life. We need good sleep for optimal health. Good sleep helps repair and strengthen our muscles. When we sleep we release growth hormone. This is the drug that most cheating athletes use and we produce it naturally! It helps to repair and grow muscles thus helping increase our strength and endurance. In addition to helping with muscular repair good sleep can also help ward off colds and flu. A study by Cohen 2005 showed that when 153 people were exposed to the common cold virus those who on average slept less than 7 hours per night were 3 times more likely to catch the virus. Other studies have shown that those with poor sleep patterns use the doctor and healthcare 11% more than those who get enough sleep. Other proposed benefits include improved memory, creativity and even longer life! So what can we do to ensure we give ourselves the best chance of having a good nights sleep.

1. Have a set bed time. This is essential as it allows the body to get its carcadiam rhythm to a regular state. Your carcadiam rhythm is what moves allows us to move through the different phases of sleep. Keeping this regular, waking and going to bed at roughly the same time allows us to get drowsy and fall into deep sleeps 2. Turn off ipods and phones about an hour before bed. Not only do these devices over stimulate us they actually stop melatonin (the chemical that makes us feel tired) being produced! The blue light that is omitted from these devices stops melatonin being converted from serotonin. The result? We go to bed and don’t feel tired. Read a book and unwind an hour before bed. 3. Do not have overhead lights on at night. Try if at all possible, to have lamps on. This replicates the sun going down where light overhead replicates a high sun. Our bodies are very primitive and our friend melatonin doesn’t know the difference between artificial light and the sun unfortunately. Keep the light as low as possible as it approaches bed time. 4. For parents. Parents often find their sleep interrupted by infants and young children who wake several times during the night. To improve

sleep quality, the National Sleep Foundation advises the following for tired parents: split child care into shifts to allow longer periods of sleep; keep the lights turned down during middle-of-the-night during nappy changes, making it easier for parents and baby to fall back to sleep; don’t have any TV or computers in your bedroom; 5. Exercise during the day. Exercise during the day to help improve sleep and create a relaxing bedtime routine for you. When we are tired we do not feel like exercising but by exercising or going for a walk we stimulate dopamine and other chemicals to help regulate our hormones and chemicals. 6. Don’t stress. Just lying in bed means you are getting good rest. It can take a while for good sleep habits to form. Do not worry if you are not getting the 7-9 hours you need initially. Or if you are waking up in the middle of the night. Persistence always pays in the long run.   With summer approaching more and more people are getting active. If you hear of trying to get active and wants to start with a check up to make sure they are not doing any harm. Contact me on: eoineverard@gmail.com or visit everardpilates.com

The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021






The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021


Eoin Larkin: corner stone of the greatest hurling team of all time THE story of Kilkenny hurler Eoin Larkin was celebrated in the opening programme of Season 19 of Laochra Gael which returned toTG4 on Thursday, March 25. Hurling has been at the core of Eoin Larkin’s life since he was a boy. And the game was vital in maintaining Larkin’s bond with his father after his parents’ separation. After successful years underage, Larkin became a cornerstone of the greatest team of all time, winning eight All Ireland medals and Hurler of the Year. But in the background he was struggling. Towards the end of his career, his mental health declined. He kept his suffering a secret, until he received a phone call from Brian Cody that changed his life. The Eoin Larkin episode was directed by Hugh Walsh, and among those who took part in the programme were: Eoin Larkin; Anne Larkin; Allen Larkin; Damian Lawlor; Jackie Tyrrell; Máire Treasa Ní Cheallaigh; Mark Foley; Michael Rice and Shane McGrath The definitive GAA sports series returned to TG4 or a 19th series and is available for catch-up on the TG4 Player. The hour-long format has proved a huge success, bringing each player’s personal stories to screen. The series which already featured six extraordinary Laochra with genuine star quality took a break from our screens but is now returning with the remaining six Laochra. The series reveals deeper, fresh and sometimes

unexpected insights into the lives of these icons. While their sporting careers continue to provide the backdrop to the story, the series travels well beyond the four white lines. Gripping personal storylines will compel viewers to travel towards territory unique to the GAA television landscape. This new season’s batch of GAA Legends kicked off in January and already included Kevin Cassidy who lost out on an All-Ireland medal because of his contribution to a book - Ryan O’Dwyer, who was on the cusp of leading the Dublin hurlers to glory, before he cost them an All-Ireland title. Thérèse Maher, who finally

Eoin with his daughter Ellie

fulfilled her destiny having lost five All Ireland Camogie Finals. Roscommon’s Shane Curran, one of football’s great characters, and the prototype of the modern playmaking goalkeeper. Johnny Pilkington, the heartbeat of the mighty Offaly hurlers of the 1990s, and one of the game’s greatest characters. And Dermot Earley, who showed extraordinary courage in the face of crippling injuries, cancer and the death of his father. These can currently be viewed on the TG4 Player. Along with Eoin Larkin - in this run of GAA legends we have Pete McGrath, the Down manager, who inspired the

Eoin with his wife Anne and daughter Olivia

Ulster Takeover, uniting the province and the country in the process. Briege Corkery, With 18 All Ireland medals, she is the centre of any conversation about the greatest of all time. Bernard Flynn, who won it all on the field with Meath, but who lost everything he

had when he retired. Tyrone icon Seán Cavanagh and his lifelong struggle with confidence and self-worth. And finally Liam Griffin, who came from nowhere to become the unlikely saviour of Wexford hurling.

The series is produced by NemetonTV, the independent production company from Ring in the Waterford Gaeltacht which has produced much of TG4’s acclaimed sports coverage.

The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021






The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021


Science and religion and a quest for truth BY PAUL HOPKINS

IT is perhaps fitting that in the lead up to Holy Week — Christianity’s greatest celebration — Finnish astrophotographer JP Metsavainio has announced that, after 1,250 hours over the course of about 12 years, he has finished creating a single image that reveals the magnificent beauty of the entire Milky Way. Back in 2009, Metsavainio began this project, which is a 1.7-gigapixel mosaic of the Milky Way composed of 234 individual images all stitched together. The resulting image captures the entire galaxy, speckled with about 20 million of the Milky Way’s roughly 200 billion stars. So, how could a single image take 12 years? In his blog, Metsavainio points to “the size of the mosaic and the fact that the image is very deep. And adds: “Another reason is that I have shot most of the mosaic frames as individual compositions and published them as independent artworks.” Don’t fret if you can’t get your head around the roughly 200 billion stars in our Milky Way. You’re not alone, trust me, but who knows what secrets those stars may one day yield. For me, Easter begs the question: Are religion and science that far apart in their quest for a meaning to life? They may in fact be more compatible than some would argue on the, you know, Big Question of who are we, how do we come to be here, and what’s next in the grand scheme of things? Consider this: Pope Francis acknowledges that the Big Bang and evolution are real, and that God is not a “magician with a magic wand”. The Pope, the first Jesuit pontiff and a scientist by training,

has said that both evolution and the Big Bang are “not incompatible” with the existence of God, and that both “required” a Creator. To argue that being religious is incompatible with being a scientist does not cut it, when you consider that the father of the Big Bang was actually a Catholic priest, Belgium’s George Lemaitre; that the pioneer of modern genetics was an Augustinian monk, the Morovian born Gregor Mendel; and the decoder of the human genome is Dr Francis Collins, a once avowed atheist who converted to Catholicism in his 20s while studying quantum physics. Perhaps no one knows better than Francis Collins how easy it could be for a scientist to play God with human destiny. While studying for his first of many degrees, Collins said: “I realised something very fundamental, that I had made a decision to reject any faith view of the world without ever really knowing what it was that I had rejected. And that worried me. “As a scientist, you’re not supposed to make decisions without the data. It was pretty clear I hadn’t done any data collecting about what [religious] faiths stood for.” Similarly, Pope Francis last year told a gathering of astronomy students at the Vatican that “scientists and people of faith must admit they don’t know everything and must never be afraid to explore and question”. Our best estimates are that there are around 200 billion stars in the Milky Way and at least 140 billion galaxies across the universe. When you ponder this unchartered vastness, and the wonders of the natural world, or the mysteries of consciousness, what are you left with? Nothing but a material world, the workings of which are just waiting to be discovered by the logical reasoning of science? Or a Divine Originator, a power incomprehensible to our limited reasoning but gives

meaning and purpose to it all? Increasingly, modern science, particularly astrophysics, alludes to an Original Cause. The eminent evolutionist Richard Dawkins leaves me cold for he starts from the arrogant premise that there is no God and that the Big Bang of 13.8 billion years ago and everything that has followed since is, effectively, just chance. Could just as easily not have happened. I don’t buy that. Darwin never ruled out a Divine Originator. And science has yet to define what exactly consciousness or reality is. That the laws of physics are so mi-

Science and religion may be more compatible than some would argue, on the Big Question of who are we, how do we come to be here, and what’s next ...

nutely fine-tuned, that there is Life, that you and I exist at all — a nano-nano second either side of the Big Bang and the ‘conditions’ for such would not ‘be’ — is, in the true sense of the word, a miracle. Ergo, anything is possible. There is just as likely a God as there is not. Contrary to widespread belief, the modern Catholic Church is science-friendly: its support for Darwin contrasts sharply with the unscientific belief in Creationism of many evangelicals across the world — a concept Pope Benedict XVI criticised in 2007 as “absurd”.

As far as the eye can see: astrophotographer JP Metsavainio’s creation of the Milky Way; the Resurrected Christ; and Pope Francis and Einstein

Increasingly, modern science, particularly in the field of astrophysics, alludes to — indeed, concludes of — an Original Cause or God. (Robert Lanza’s Biocentrics and Bernard Haisch’s The God Theory are not a million light years from Higgs boson and the God particle.) My Catholic upbringing in the Ireland of the Sixties did little to answer any of the Big Questions. And I could not rationalise a God who would condemn to eternal damnation, nor a devil that existed apart from God for that defeats the very definition of what God is — the All That Is. My father many years ago said to me, if you cannot believe then you should at least hope. My small circle of friends is in the main atheistic or agnostic. The familiar stark divide between people of religion and those without I feel is too crude. Many atheists have convictions and experiences just as profound as those that believers count as ‘religious’. Though they do not believe in a ‘personal’ god, they nevertheless believe in a ‘force’ in the universe ‘greater than we are’. As did, and few consider this, Einstein who wrote: “To know that what is impenetrable to us really exists, manifesting itself as the highest wisdom and the most radiant beauty ... this knowledge, this feeling, is at the centre of true religiousness. In this sense, and this sense only, I belong in the ranks of devoutly religious.’’ Finally, where we stand on Jesus might be a good question to ponder this Holy Week. Do we believe He was the Son of God, that He could perform miracles, that He died for us? Do we believe that He even existed? Such contentions have been argued for centuries by philosophers and theologians, from Francis of Assisi to Martin Luther to Pierre Teilhard de Chardin. It would appear there is more evidence that Jesus of Nazareth certainly lived than for most famous figures of the ancient past. This evidence is of two kinds, according to the noted historian Paul L Maier: internal and external. Or, if you will, sacred and secular. “In both cases, the total evidence is so overpowering, so absolute that only the shallowest of intellects would dare to deny Jesus’ existence,” says Maier. On the sacred front, the most detailed record of Jesus’ life is recorded in the Gospels. In addition, a number of early non-Christian sources name Him quite clearly. Meantime, happy Easter and go easy on those eggs. I’m off back to my tome on parallel universes. As if one was not enough to contend with...

The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021





The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021


Food & Drink

Dine Me Come


Pairing food and wine

Stay healthy with this low cal, high-fibre Pasta Primavera Prep: 10 mins Easy Serves 4 Cook: 20 mins A healthy spaghetti dish full of broad beans, leeks and asparagus tips. Make the most of spring greens with this vibrant, filling pasta recipe

(we used mint, parsley and chives) • parmesan (or vegetarian alternative), shaved, to serve

INGREDIENTS • 75g young broad beans (use frozen if you can’t get fresh) • 2 x 100g pack asparagus tips • 170g peas (use frozen if you can’t get • fresh) • 350g spaghetti or tagliatelle • 175g pack baby leeks , trimmed and sliced • 1 tbsp olive oil , plus extra to serve • 1 tbsp butter • 200ml tub fromage frais or creme fraiche • handful fresh chopped herbs

Method STEP 1 • Bring a pan of salted water to the boil and put a steamer (or colander) over the water. Steam the beans, asparagus and peas until just tender, then set aside. Boil the pasta following pack instructions. STEP 2 • Meanwhile, fry the leeks gently in the oil and butter for 5 mins or until soft. Add the fromage frais to the leeks

FOOD and wine pairing is actually very easy once you have the correct basic information on both the food and the wine. If you don’t have this information, then the pairing will be down to luck rather than judgement.

and very gently warm through, stirring constantly to ensure it doesn’t split. Add the herbs and steamed vegetables with a splash of pasta water to loosen.

STEP 3 • Drain the pasta and stir into the sauce. Adjust the seasoning, then serve scattered with the cheese and drizzled with a little extra olive oil.

Easy carrot cake so delicious Prep: 35 mins Easy Serves 10-12 Cook: 30 mins Top this classic carrot cake with moreish icing and chopped walnuts or pecans. Serve as a sweet treat with a cup of tea any time of the day.

For the icing • 100g slightly salted butter, softened 300g icing sugar • 100g soft cheese

INGREDIENTS • 230ml vegetable oil, plus extra for the tin 100g natural yogurt • 4 large eggs • 11⁄2 tsp vanilla extract • 1⁄2 orange, zested • 265g self-raising flour • 335g light muscovado sugar • 21⁄2 tsp ground cinnamon • 1⁄4 fresh nutmeg, finely grated • 265g carrots (about 3), grated • 100g sultanas or raisins • 100g walnuts or pecans, roughly chopped (optional)

Method STEP 1 • Heat the oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4. Oil and line the base and sides of • two 20cm cake tins with baking parchment. Whisk the oil, yogurt, eggs, vanilla and zest in a jug. Mix the flour, sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg with a good pinch of salt in a

bowl. Squeeze any lumps of sugar through your fingers, shaking the bowl a few times to bring the lumps to the surface. STEP 2 • Add the wet ingredients to the dry, along with the carrots, raisins and half the nuts, if using. Mix well to combine, then divide between the tins.

STEP 3 • Bake for 25-30 mins or until a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean. If any wet mixture clings to the skewer, return to the oven for 5 mins, then check again. Leave to cool in the tins. STEP 4 • To make the icing, beat the butter and sugar together until smooth. Add half the soft cheese and beat again, then add the rest (adding it bit by bit prevents the icing from splitting). Remove the cakes from the tins and sandwich together with half the icing. Top with the remaining icing and scatter with the remaining walnuts. Will keep in the fridge for up to five days. Best eaten at room temperature.

The main problem that people encounter when pairing food and wine is a lack of information on the wine side. So what basic information should you have? For the food you only need to know the main ingredient, how it is cooked and the sauces/ seasonings, if any – that’s usually quite straight forward. Now, for the wine you should consider its basic elements: flavours, body, dry/sweet and acidity, as well as tannin for red wine.


• Match the richness or heaviness of the food with the body of the wine. • Match the flavour strength of the food with the flavour strength of the wine. • Match high acid foods (dishes containing tomatoes, lemon/lime juice, vinegar, apples or pineapples) with high acid wines. • Match fatty or oily foods with high acid wines. • Match sweet foods with sweet wines. • Match salty foods (eg. fish or cheese) with high acid or sweet wines. • Match barbequed foods with oaked wines. • Match hot or very spicy foods with dry or medium-dry, unoaked white wines.


• Don’t pair full flavoured dishes with delicate or light bodied wines. • Don’t pair oily or salty foods with high tannin wines (they require high acid wines). • Don’t pair hot and spicy foods with high alcohol, high tannin or oaked wines. • Don’t pair fried foods with low acid wines (they require high acid wines).

The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021






The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021


Famous Romanians around the world BY BIANCA RALLIS

THROUGHOUT history, each country has given the world some extraordinary, talented people; historians, scientists, inventors, philosophers, sculptors, writers etc. We invite you to look at our list and uncover some of the world-famous geniuses who you probably did not have a clue were Romanian. Constantin Brancusi, one of the pioneers of the modern sculpture, is considered one of the most influential sculptors of the 20 centuries, being appreciated not just in Constantin E u ro p e Brancusi but also in the United States. Born on February 19, 1876 he studied in Romania at the National Art University in Bucharest, then in Munich, and finally made his way to the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris. In his work he sought inspiration from Romanian folk art and other influences from non-European cultures as a source of primitive exoticism. Notable works such as The Endless Column, Bird in Space, The Newborn, Mademoiselle Pogany, The Kiss, and Sleeping Muse were displayed in the greatest museums around the world or sold to private collections for world record auction prices. In May 2018, La Jeune Fille Sofistiquee was sold for $71 million in New York. Another piece

of his art, Madame L.R, was sold for $37.2 million in 2009. MIRCEA ELIADE is one of the world’s foremost interpreters of religious symbolism and myth. Born in Bucharest on the 9 of March 1907, he started his study of philosophy at the University of Bucharest, receiving an M.A. in 1928. A quite unusual feat for his time, from 1928 to 1930, Eliade had the chance to travel in India and study in Calcutta under the Sanskrit scholar Surendranath Dascupta, attending yoga practice as well. Upon his return to Bucharest, he wrote a dissertation on the comparative history of yoga techniques for which he received a PhD. in philosophy in 1933. Being an extremely prolific writer (fiction and scholarly), he wrote his fictional works in Romanian and his major academic works in French. Over time his books were translated to 18 languages all around the world. If you are interested in myths and world religions, here are a few of Eliade’s major scholarly works that I highly recommend: The History of Religious Ideas, Myth and Reality, Patterns in Comparative Religion, The Myth of the Eternal Return (also translated as Cosmos and History), and his most ambitious and challenging novel, The Forbidden Forest, which is considered his magnum opus. After World War II Eliade lived in Paris, establishing an international reputation as a historian, morphologist, and phenom-

Romanian team and Hagi played v Ireland in Italia 90

enologist of religion. In 1956 he was appointed visiting professor, and then professor and chairman, of the history of religions d e p a r tment at the Uni-

built the first arrow-shaped airplane, or Traian Vuia, the inventor of the first fixed wing aircraft that could take off by its own power. Even though we are using digital versity of Chicago, where he taught until his retirement in 1983. GEORGE EMIL PALADE was a Romanian-American cell biologist who, in 1974, was awarded the Nobel prize in Physiology and Medicine, along with Albert Claude and Christian de Duve, and was described as “the most influential cell biologist ever.” Palade was born in November 1912 and developed a strong interest in basic biomedical sciences in his early years as a student. He graduated the School of Medicine of the University of Bucharest, Romania in 1940, serving during the second world war in the medical corps of the Romanian Army. After the war, Palade went to the United States, in 1946, for further studies. After one year of severe travel restrictions, we would all like to fly for a holiday or to reunite with family and friends. The next time you have the chance to fly, perhaps you will remember Aurel Vlaicu, the Romanian who

Aurel Vlaicu

technology for most of our writing, from time to time we love to turn to the old fashion method of handwriting with a fancy fountain pen. Here we have another famous Romanian, Petrache Poenaru, who, on May 25, 1827, invented the fountain pen while he was in school in Paris. We should never forget the contributions of people like these, who have helped shape the world and who have inspired generations, no matter where they come from. This article is supported by the Romanian Twighlight Community Group Contact: kclw.ro@ twighlight. ie

The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021






The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021

News & Wellbeing Science

Getting a good night’s sleep as the clocks go forward WITH the clocks going forward and the evenings getting brighter, it’s important to consider the time you go to bed rather than the time you wake-up. Common sense tells us that, if you’re going to bed at the same time but just waking up earlier, you will end up being tired. Instead, going to bed earlier means you’ll get enough sleep. Here are some suggestions for a good night’s sleep and a healthy next day. It’s best not to eat too close to bedtime. If you’re still digesting your food when you’re trying

to go to sleep, your body may be too busy to relax enough for you to sleep. Eating three hours before bedtime is better than one hour before bedtime. You don’t want a lot of exposure to light in the hours before it’s time to go to sleep. And that includes light from your electronic devices, like your smartphone or tablet or watching TV in bed. You want to be dimming or turning off all the the lights in your home in the lead up to bedtime, and a good night’s sleep. Light plays a big part in telling

your circadian rhythms that it’s time to get a move on. As soon as you wake up, open the curtains and, if you can, head outside for a walk. If you start in the morning with early morning light, get outside and exercise. The light tells your body that it’s time to wake up. Then you’ll be tired when it comes time to go to bed again. Older adults need about the same amount of sleep as all adults — seven to nine hours each night. However, in general older people tend to go to sleep earlier and get up

earlier than they did when they were younger. Insomnia is the most common sleep problem in adults age 60 and older. People with this condition have trouble falling asleep and staying asleep. Insomnia can last for days, months, and even years. Often, being unable to sleep becomes a habit. Some people worry about not sleeping even before they get into bed. This may make it harder to fall asleep and stay asleep. Your GP can help if you are troubled by insomnia.

Dogs trained to sniff out prostate cancer CHEMICALS in a man’s urine, that may indicate a higher risk of having aggressive prostate cancer, can be ‘detected’ by trained dogs, according to research form John Hopkins University in the US. Prostate cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in men in the developed world. Standard blood tests for early detection often miss

cancers in men whose PSA levels — the blood test used to detect prostate cancer — are within normal levels or overdiagnose men with clinically insignificant tumours or no cancer at all. Researchers had two dogs sniff samples of urine from men diagnosed with aggressive prostrate cancer and also from men without cancer.

The researchers had trained the animals to respond to cancer-related chemicals placed in urine samples and not respond to ones without them. The dogs performed their cancer detection roles well, according to Alan Partin, urologist-in-chief at Johns Hopkins Hospital. Both dogs identified five of seven urine samples from

men with cancer, or 71.4% accuracy. One correctly identified 16 of the 21 non- aggressive or no cancer samples (76.2%), and the other dog picked out 14 (66.7%). A long history of ‘biobanking’ valuable patient samples made the recent study, and other prostate cancer research at Johns Hopkins Medicine, possible.

New study shows human evolution is speeding up WE humans are still evolving, and we may be doing so at a faster degree than ever before, according to a study in Australia. The research looks at several examples of new, human traits such as an increasing lack of wisdom teeth, the shortening of babies’ faces with smaller jaws, the increased presence of a fabella (the small bone in the back of the knee joint) and extra bones in the feet. The report’s primary focus, though, is a sudden increase in the appearance of the median artery in the adult human forearm. The researchers say these trends constitute “micro evolution.” The study was authored by scientists from Flinders Uni-

versity and the University of Adelaide in South Australia. It’s published in the latest edition of Journal of Anatomy. The median artery supplies blood to a foetus’ forearm in the womb during early gestation. It is replaced by the radial and ulna arteries before birth. Few adults have had all three arteries — median, radial, and ulna — but this has been changing. Leader researcher Maciej Henneberg told the journal: “This is micro evolution in modern humans and the median artery is a perfect example of how we’re still evolving because people born more recently have a higher prevalence of this artery when compared to humans from previous generations.”

The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021






The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021

News Lockdown streaming

Five great war movies to stream 1. DA 5 BLOODS (2020)

Spike Lee’s story of a group of Black Vietnam veterans returning to that country years later is much more than a war story. Featuring great talent, including Delroy Lindo, Jonathan Majors, Clarke Peters, and Chadwick Boseman, Da 5 Bloods is Lee’s biggest film yet and maybe the most important war movie of recent years.

Run is the ultimate Bad Mammy movie

2.THE KING (2019)

Though historical in setting, The King is Shakespearean in tone and scope, adapting the part of the bard’s ‘Henriad’ centred on King Henry V. The film is a brutal epic and one without the sword-crossing cliches of most movies depicting the period. It’s also one of the best Shakespearean adaptations to date.


The film is a dramatised retelling of author and human rights activist Loung Ung’s childhood under Cambodia’s Khmer Rouge. History textbooks likely glossed over this outgrowth of the war in Vietnam. Educating.


The war at the heart of Beasts of No Nation is essentially endless. Cary Joji Fukunaga (True Detective, Sin Hombre), brings to the film the dream- like suspension found in so many of his works. The effect is a trauma that endures and a nightmare that never leaves. It’s absolutely gutting.

5. THE 12TH MAN (2017)

Norway’s The 12th Man is about a real documented escape from Nazi-occupied Norway to neutral Sweden. It’s a smaller production than most war films, but it has a bigger heart. * All streaming on Netflix now

ACTRESS Sarah Paulson, who starred in 12 Years A Slave (2013) and Carole (2015) is the kind of effortlessly talented actor that can do it all — from sadistic nurse to fascinating anti-feminist activist, and all shades in-between. She is at her best when she’s getting under our skin in a horrifying psychological thriller. As is the case with her tense new film, Run, which is coming to Netflix. Like many other movies

during the Covid-19 pandemic, Run was forced to skip cinemas altogether and go straight to streaming in the US. Now, after months of endless waiting, Netflix has confirmed that it will be bringing the thriller to Irish audiences very soon. Here’s what you need to know about Run. If you thought Carrie’s Margaret White was the ultimate bad movie mammy, think again: in Run, Paulson’s Di-

ane has made a point of raising her own daughter in total isolation. As such, she has totally controlled Chloe since the moment she was born. Now, though, Chloe is a teenager with a lot of questions. And those questions soon lead the teenager to uncover her mother’s most sinister secrets... Kiera Allen stars opposite Paulson’s Diane as her frightened teenage daughter, Chloe.

Sara Sohn, Pat Healy, Erik Athavale, BJ Harrison, Onalee Ames, Sharon Bajer, and Joanne Rodriguez complete the film’s cast. The film has a 89% ‘fresh’ rating on Rotten Tomatoes, with critics piling praise on the film’s “solid acting and expertly ratcheted tension.” One critic says: “It’s a lean 90 minutes, and you want the experience to be over in the best of ways: it’s almost too intense at points, and you need to take a breath.”

Netflix, again, trying to stop password sharing UP to now, Netflix never made an issue about password-sharing, but a new test may mean the company is having second thoughts. Netflix is trying out a new policy with some customers, prompting certain people to

sign up for a separate account if they aren’t watching with the subscriber. The message reads: “If you don’t live with the owner of this account, you need your own account to keep watching.” According to a spokesman,

Netflix tries “hundreds” of tests a year with select customers. “This test is designed to help ensure that people using Netflix accounts are authorised to do so,” Netflix said in a statement. The trial may not lead to a

larger crackdown around password sharing. The test could be applied for account security as well as sharing passwords. About 33% of all Netflix users share their password with at least one other person, according to research.

The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021






The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021


The Kilkenny Observer Newspaper would like to thank Cois Céim, The Saturday Walkers group, and The Library of The Kilkenny Archaeological society for this information. THE Siege of Kilkenny  was the isolation and capture of the fortified capital of the Irish Confederates  by the New Model Army of the English Parliamentarians  in March 1650 during the conquest of Ireland by Oliver Cromwell. Background In August 1649, approximately one year after the end of the Second English Civil War, Oliver Cromwell brought the Commonwealth of England’ ‘s Parliamentarian New Model Army to Ireland to reclaim control from the combined forces of the English royalists and the Irish Confederates. After arriving in Ireland, Cromwell’s forces struck hard and fast north of Dublin capturing Drogheda, Belfast, and Carrickfergus. Concurrently, Cromwell attacked and captured the south eastern port cities of Wexford  and New Ross before the onset of winter. On 29 January 1650, taking advantage of a mild winter, Cromwell reinitiated his campaign in southern Ireland with the overall objective of capturing both the Confederate capital of Kilkenny and the fortified stronghold of Clonmel. By early March, Cromwell’s forces had begun to encircle Kilkenny.   WALLED TOWN Kilkenny was a fortified town which was divided into three self-contained walled districts: High Town was next to the Kilkenny Castle and bounded on the east by the River Nore; Irish Town BY: GERRY CODYwas also bounded on the east by the River Nore and stood adjacent to the northern wall of High Town; St. John’s was on the eastern bank of the River Nore and connected to High Town by St. John’s Bridge. High Town has a number of streets that still stand today such as; High Street, Walkin Street, James Street and St. Kieran Street. Prior to initiating a siege of Kilkenny, Cromwell had hoped to capture the city by means of a plot. An Irish officer serving as a part of the defence force for Kilkenny, Captain Tickle, had been bribed to betray the city by opening one of the gates to the Parliamentarians. When Cromwell’s forces arrived at the appointed time and place to enter the city, however, the Parliamentarians found the intended entry point securely closed and defended. Tickle’s treachery had been discovered through his correspondence and Tickle had been hanged. Shortly thereafter, as Cromwell prepared to siege the city, the leader of the Royalist alliance, the Duke of Ormond and the Confederate Commissioners fled Kilkenny to the safety of King John’s Castle 90 kilometres to the west in Limerick. The Earl of Castlehaven was given command of the modest Royalist force in southern Leinster province and Sir Walter Butler was placed in command of the Royalist forces in Kilkenny. CROMWELL OFFERS TERMS OF SURRENDER On 22 March, Cromwell’s forces arrived at

Oliver Cromwell was an English general and statesman who, first as a subordinate and later as Commander-in-Chief, led armies of the Parliament of England against King Charles I during the English Civil War, subsequently ruling the British Isles as Lord Protector from 1653 until his death in 1658

The siege Kilkenny: March 27 1650


The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021




The Cromwellian war in Ireland was the conquest of Ireland by the forces of the English Parliament, led by Oliver Cromwell, during the Wars of the Three Kingdoms.


Kilkenny. Cromwell immediately offered terms of surrender to the garrison and townspeople. Butler rejected Cromwell’s offer the next day causing the Parliamentarians to invest the city and begin the siege and attack in earnest. Cromwell’s first act was to send a cavalry regiment in an attempt to storm the gate of Irish Town. The citizen’s militia defending Irish Town, however, held strong and Cromwell’s forces were repulsed. As the fighting in Irish Town occurred, Cromwell also moved to expand and secure his siege perimeter to include the grounds of St. Patrick’s Church to the southwest of the High Town wall. This was successfully accomplished and provided the Parliamentarians with an excellent site for their artillery. BOMBARDMENT OF THE HIGH TOWN On 24 March, Cromwell put his artillery in position, but initiated no attacks. On the morning of 25 March, Cromwell started his bombardment of the southern wall of High Town. By Noon, the High Town wall was breached and Cromwell ordered his men to attack. Cromwell’s forces stormed the wall and made it inside High Town, but were beaten back convincingly by musket fire from defensive works positioned inside. The histories with regard to the fighting at the High Wall on 25 March are unclear. Some sources claim that Cromwell withdrew after one attempt.  Other sources claim that two unsuccessful attempts were made by the Parliamentarians and an order for a third attempt was disobeyed by the soldiers. Regardless, Cromwell’s forces ultimately withdrew beaten and ended the attack for the day. Later that day, however, Cromwell sent a second force to attack Dean’s

Gate on the west side of Irish Town. In contrast to the previous attack on Irish Town, this attack was conducted by means of a combined infantry and cavalry force and proved successful. Quite quickly, in fact, the civilian militia was overcome and the Parliamentarians entered and secured the district. At that point, Cromwell renewed his offer for terms of surrender and allowed Butler time to consider While waiting for Butler’s response, Cromwell sent a detachment across River Nore to attack St. Johns. The Parliamentarians easily fought their way into this section of the city with the defenders eventually breaking and fleeing across the St. John’s Bridge into High Town. The Parliamentarians pursued the defenders and attempted to enter High Town through the gate house but were turned back At that point, Butler and the Royalists were in a very difficult position. Cromwell’s artillery at St. Patrick’s Church remained positioned to batter the southern wall of High Town. Cromwell’s forces held St. Johns and were preparing to re-attack the bridge gate house and High Town wall at the river. And finally, Cromwell’s forces held the high ground of Irish Town and were setting up an additional battery of artillery at that site to bombard the north-eastern walls of High Town. By the morning of 27 March, Cromwell’s artillery fire from Irish Town had opened a second breach in the High Town wall near the Franciscan Abbey. Butler was now faced with protecting and defending three potential points of entry into High Town. Then to make matters even worse at that time, Parliamentarian General Ireton arrived with a column of 1,500 men to reinforce Cromwell’s forces if needed. Seeing no way to successfully defend

Kilkenny’s High Town and castle against such an onslaught, Butler accepted Cromwell’s terms of surrender admitting to himself there was nothing he could do. In doing so, Butler was actually following the orders that he had been given by Lord Castlehaven, those orders being that absent relief, he was not to risk a massacre but to accept a timely surrender with conditions as fair as he might negotiate AFTERMATH On 28 March 1650, the city of Kilkenny and the castle were handed over to Cromwell along with all the associated arms, ammunition, and public stores. The citizens of the city were free to leave or alternatively would be protected against violence from the soldiers if they chose to remain. The Royalist officers and soldiers were given safe conduct to march away from the city with their colours flying, taking along with them their bags, baggage, horses, and arms. When the garrison marched out of town they were complimented by Cromwell for their gallantry in battle. Cromwell went on to tell them that his casualties were higher in Kilkenny than the losses he suffered at Drogheda. The number of casualties on either side is not readily available but it is estimated to be fairly low with the greatest number of casualties occurring during the fighting which took place at the breach of the southern wall of High Town. After Kilkenny, Cromwell would go on to conquer the Royalist stronghold of Clonmel on 18 May before returning to England. The Parliamentarian army commanded by Ireton would fight for approximately two more years before ending the last of the Royalist organized resistance at Galway in May of 1652.




The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021

The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021





The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021


Community & GAA Notes

Kilkenny GAA clubs and Community news Clara GAA GAA COACHING To All Coaches - please make sure you have the following in place for 2021. 1. Garda Vetting. 2. Safeguarding 1 Workshop. 3. Coaches Foundation Course. You cannot coach until each of the above are completed and not expired.

Kilmanagh MASS ON THE INTERNET After many requests, and a few technical hitches, we are now capable of broadcasting Mass from the parish. Until we return to our normal schedule, Mass will be broadcast each day at 10.30 am. Just log onto the parish website at www.ballycallan.com, scroll to the bottom of the page and click on the YouTube link at the bottom. We are still ironing out a few problems, but we hope to broadcast our Easter ceremonies. FIRST HOLY COMMUNION The sacraments of First Confession and First Holy Communion are postponed until September on account of the late re-opening of schools and churches. We will announce an official date for these sacraments around Easter time when we know more about the vaccine rollout. RING A LINK Ring a Link is a community not for profit company that provides rural transport. Ring a Link provides a service every Tuesday from 9.00 am covering areas such as Callan (surrounding area), Ballingarry, Kilmanagh, Ballycallan, Tullaroan with the last stop in Dunnes Stores Kilkenny and return approximately at 1pm. All free travel passes are welcome, and, for non-free travel pass holders, fares are €6 return for adults,  €4 return for under 16s and under 5’s travel free. For many of our services, pre-registering & pre-booking is required and if the customer is not already registered, they can log on to our website to register: https://www. ringalink.ie/register/. If you need more information on the service, you can log on to https://www. ringalink.ie/bus-services/bustimetable/470/. SCHOOL ENROLMENTS Enrolments for September 2021 to St. Aidan’s National School are being accepted until March 31. Please complete the enrolment form on staidansns. scoilnet.ie or email the school at staidansnskilmanagh@gmail. com. Forms can be emailed, posted or dropped into the school. PARISH WEBSITE The new parish website is now back up and running.  It now incorporates the new cluster of parishes formed in 2019, namely Ballycallan, Tullaroan and

Freshford. Its aim is to provide information that is both common and unique to each parish with the hope of greater cooperation between the three. CHURCHES OPEN Our churches are  open for private prayer. Do drop in from time to time and spend a few quiet minutes with the Lord. The door handles and candelabras are sanitised each day. PARISH NEWS Anyone wishing to submit news items, events, announcements etc. can do so by email only to elanigan18@gmail.com. If you have any photos that you would like included, please send as an attachment.

O’Loughlin Gaels An Lató Ní raibh aon bhuaiteoir sa lató anocht. Pota óir na seachtaine seo ná €13,800 Uimhreacha Tarraingthe: 2, 3, 15, 20 Bónas 14 Tarrac an phoiblitheora: CLUB LOTTO: There was no winner from last weeks draw Tuesday March 16th with a Jackpot of €13600. Numbers drawn were 2, 3, 15, 20 Bonus 14. Tickets available online at www.oloughlingaels.com/lotto Play Now, support the club. Promotors Draw for prizes of €40: 1. Eileen Cleere 2. Michael Maher c/o Dinny Tyrell 3. Paddy Greene 4. PM Keoghan c/o Mick Nolan 5. Jane Dineen c/o Hugh Mahon 6. Benny c/o Mary Cody 7. Joan Knox c/o Noel Tyrell 8. Willie O’Neill c/o Online 9. Catherine Rice Kelly c/o Online 10. Eimear Skehan c/o Online Draw takes place every Tuesday at 9:30pm with results on club social media pages afterwards. O’LOUGHLIN GAELS WELCOMES NEW MEMBERS. O’Loughlin Gaels GAA is currently accepting applications for new members online at www. oloughlingaels.com/membership See page for all the details. O’Loughlin Gaels GAA boasts state of the art facilities at Hebron Rd, Kilkenny, adjacent to Nowlan Park and serving the St. Johns Parish Community of Dunmore, Johnswell and the Eastern Environs of Kilkenny City. Teams from u6 to adult play hurling, football and camogie and handball facilities - boasting two alleys. The club house has been recently refurbished to include extensions to the Dressing rooms and the players Gym in addition to updating the lounge, bar, kitchen and externally accessible toilets. More improvements are planned for St. John’s Park which currently boasts 2 championship pitches, juvenile pitch and training areas as well as a large playing hall with separate changing areas for users.

Freshford LOCAL ALL STARS Congratulations were expressed recently to Kilkenny and St.Lachtains camogie star Ann Dalton on winning another all star award this time at left corner forward position. This was her 7th All star award .Ann who announced her retirement from the County scene recently has been a stalwart over the years both at County and Club level.Congrats also to Claire Phelan a member of the St.Lachhtais/Lisdowney club who was picked at full back and Miriam Walsh winning he full forward position. DEATHS; The death occurred at Brookhaven Nursing Home Ballyragget recently of Billy Hogan late of Kilrush Freshford. The deceased who has been unwell recently was in his mid-80s He was predeceased by his wife Marie a couple of years ago and also by his brother John. He was widely known and respected in the area and was a quiet and good living gentleman. Funeral mass took place in St.Lachtains Church followed by interment in St.Lachtains cemetery. He is mourned by his daughters Ciara and Niamh, brother Paddy, sons in law, his 5 grandchildren, nieces’ nephews and friends to whom deepest sympathy is extended. Local people were saddened to learn of the passing of Lachtains Ryan late of Kilkenny Road Freshford. Although he had been unwell for a time nevertheless his passing caused sorrow and regret. He was predeceased a couple of months previously by his brother Sean. He was a quiet, hardworking and good living gentleman and a keen GAA follower. He was a devoted husband, father and grandfather. Funeral mass took place in St.Lachtains Church followed by burial in St.Lachtains Cemetery. He is mourned by his wife Peggy, sons Joe and Martin, daughter Julie, grandchildren, son in law, daughter in law, sisters, nephews, nieces and extended family to whom deepest sympathy is extended. The death occurred also recently at St Lukes Hospital Kilkenny of Patrick Dalton late of Kilaree Threecastles. A member of a well known and respected family. Although advanced in years Paddys death caused widespread shock and regret.. Funeral mass took place in Tulla Church on Tuesday morning last followed by burial in the adjoining cemetery. He is mourned by his brother Kevin (The Mills) sisters, brother in law, sisters in law, nephews, nieces and extended family to whom deepest sympathy is extended. The death occurred also of Michael Mooney late of Clone Freshford and formerly from Durrow Co.Laois. Mick as he was known to all his friends had been unwell for some time but nevertheless his passing caused widespread sorrow. He

was predeceased by his daughter Lisa, granddaughter and brother. He spent many years in UK and Australia before returning to reside at Clone. A jolly and friendly character he loved the chat. Funeral mass took place in Holy Trinity church Durrow followed by burial in the adjoining cemetery. He is mourned by his wife Karen, his daughter Adele, grandsons, son in law, sister, and extended family and friends to whom sincere sympathy is extended. SITE FOR PLAYGROUND Freshford Playground committee announced recently that they eventually have a site for their project. It hasn’t been an easy journey for them as they have been disappointed on previous occasions but they can now move forward with their plans for a Community Playground in the village. Their site is situated on the Kilkenny County Council land at the end of the GAA ground and the Committee thank everyone for their patience. More details will follow later. AWARD Congratulations to Volunteer of the year- local lady Paula Murphy (nee Dowling) of Garnamanagh Freshford . Paula from the St.Lachtains Club where she played for many years and then made the transition into coaching and has been a coach in her club for many years and has recently taken up position with the County Squads especially with underage teams. Recently Paula was ratified as part of the Minor management team for 2021. Paula was honored by the official camogie AssociatIon. The awards acknowledge the huge effort put in by volunteers all over the country throughout the year. The winners were honoured at an online event last weekend in conjunction with the Camogie Association Media awards. The event was streamed on the Clubs Facebook page. Eileen Dunne of RTE was MC for the event in honour of her late father Mick Dunne who three of the Media Awards are named after SYMPATHY Sincere sympathy is extended to Mrs. Ann Dawson of Bridge Street Freshford and all her family on the death recently of her father Jimmy Cuddihy late of Bracken, Jenkinstown. Funeral mass took place in Jenkinstown Church followed by burial in St. Colman’s cemetery Conahy. Sympathy is extended to Joe Bergin, Moat Road Freshford and all his family on the recent death of his father Michael Bergin late of Ballycarron, Jenkinstown. Funeral mass took place in St.Colmans Church Conahy followed by burial in the adjoining cemetery. Sympathy is also extended to Richard Randall Buncrussia Street Freshford and all his family on the death of his brother Alan recently. Burial took place in Foulkstown Cemetery.

BABY BOY Congratulations to Shane and Breda McGree of Millers Lodge Freshford on the birth of their baby son Harry recently, a brother for big sister Rachel. BIRTHDAY GIRLS Special birthday wishes go out to two local ladies and best friends – Ann Darcy of Clintstown Road Freshford who celebrated a very big birthday recently and also Patricia Watson of Woodview Freshford who celebrated a very special birthday also . Pat is a popular lady in the village and recently returned home after a three month stay in hospital. WORKS CLLR Michael McCarthy welcomed the Bridge Rehabilitation emergency works to the Parapet on the Mill Bridge Freshford recently. This resulted from a number of impacts to the Bridge. Some traffic disruption took place for the duration of these works. Cumnor Ltd contractors carried out this work and John Prendergast (Eng) overseeing this work with the assistance of the Area engineer. GRANTS Cllr McCarthy also expressed delight recently welcoming €20,000 in funding for upgrade works to the Freshford Loop walk and also €20,000 funding for upgrade works to the Gathabawn Loop Walk.

Urlingford EMERALDS GAA CLUB Online Bingo: On Sunday evening’s at 7pm with eyes down at 7.30pm in it’s new online version! Tickets for the zoom event can be purchased on www.clubforce.com with up to €3,000 in prizes. SHAPE THE FUTURE OF URLINGFORD The people of Urlingford have been invited to take part in a Town Health Check and baseline consultation that will inform a new Town Plan for Urlingford under the Council’s Town and Village Renewal Scheme. It is up to us to make the best of this opportunity. Take the survey: www. mykilkennytown.ieurlingford/ Attend the Zoom meeeting: Friday, April 9 at 7pm, register on the link. Engage on social media with photos of the local area using hashtags. CHARITY FUNDRAISER Sheelagh Duggan Dooley Commemoration Charity Fundraiser on Easter weekend, April 2 to 5. Virtual 5km. Gortnahoe Glengoole Adult Hurlers/Ladies Footballers and Junior Camogie Panels invite club players, families, supporters and friends of Sheelagh to run, walk or jog 5km in your club colours and raise funds for the Palliative Department, Dunmore Wing, Waterford Regional Hospital. Link open April 2 to 5, find us on gofundme.

URLINGFORD LIBRARY Virtual online workshops for children by Alan Nolan, author and illustrator on March 26 at 11am. Also Workshops by Liz Weir, storyteller on April 18 and April 25 at 7pm. Make sure to tune in and enjoy these talks and workshops. All part of the Keep Well series. MILL FAMILY RESOURCE CENTRE While Level 5 Covid-19 restrictions are in place The Mill FRC services are still open to the Community. If you need help with anything, form filling, information one-to-one support or any type of support at all we are here and are contactable on email, web page and Sue’s work phone 086 0273956. For everyones safety we would appreciate it if you could make an appointment as we have to limit the number of people accessing the Centre at the same time. We are here to assist you so just ring or private message us and we will get straight back to you. In the meantime here are some useful contacts: Aware (anxiety, depression) 1800 804848, Samaritans, 116123, (freephone) email jo@samaritans.ie, Pieta House 1800247247, Teen-line Ireland 1800 833634, Amber Kilkenny Women’s Refuge Project 056 7771404. Courses: We will update information regarding Courses inline with Covid-19 restrictions. Senior Alert: If you need to apply for a Personal Alarm please contact Sue on her work number. 086 0273956. RING-A-LINK Is a community, not for profit company that provides rural transport. All free travel passes are welcome and for non-free travel pass holders fares are €6 return for adults, €4 return for under 16s, under 5’s travel free. For many of our services pre-registering and pre-booking is required and if the customer is not already registered, they can log on to our website here to register: https://www.ringalink. ie/register/ Two Services which incorporate Urlingford are as follows: Tuesday of every week covering areas Johnstown, Gathabawn, Freshford, Gortnahoe starting 12.30 and back at 5pm. For more information see https://www.ringalink.ie/busservices/bus-timetable/494/ Galmoy to Kilkenny covering areas from Galmoy, Urlingford, Crosspatrick, Gathabawn, Cullohill, Lisdowney, Freshford and Kilkenny (Dunnes Stores Market Yard) https:// www.ringalink.ie/bus-services/bustimetable/491/ URLINGFORD / GRAINE DEFIBRILLATOR GROUP In case of emergency, call: 085 2726396. URLINGFORD NEWS Anyone wishing to submit news items, club events, announcements etc can do so by emailing urlingfordnotes@gmail.com. If you have any photos you wish to include, please forward them to the email address.

We welcome all GAA Club and Community notes for publication in The Kilkenny Observer email to sales@kilkennyobserver.ie

The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021






The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021


An absolutely beautiful day for opening day of the fishing season Some beautiful fish caught and great to see the rivers so healthy. All fish caught were all returned unharmed after been caught on barbless hooks on a catch and release basis. Great friends met on the river and great to see the rivers in Kilkenny looking so healthy. Fishing is a great way to get rid of the stresses of covid and it’s lockdowns but please if you fish respect the river and it’s environment All pics: Danny Lahart

t u o b A nny Out &


Da rt Laha

Chris Herbert with his son Conor enjoying opening day of fishing season

Jamie Dunne Legendary fisherman Tommy Buggy with Gerry Farrell on opening day

The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021




A beautiful golden wild brown trout, all fish caught are released unharmed on a catch and release basis

Chris Herbert releasing a lovely wild brown trout after been caught

Danny Delaney and his dog Shiva out fishing on opening day of season

Pauly Clifford

Mick Gilman

Chris Herbert catching a lovely golden brown trout on opening day of fishing season


The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021



Daithí Holohan has bequeathed a galaxy of dancing stars for our enjoyment “Inspiration exists, but it has to find you working”. The words of Pablo Picasso ring clear for many artists today. Words: Gerry Cody Photos: Danny Lahart

Kilkenny artist Daithí Holohan

A drawing in pen and watercolours by Daithí Holohan

THERE is certainly a sadness amongst artist of all genres as Covid has put a horrible pause on film and theatre work. Galleries throughout the country also look on as the ‘closed until further notice’ signs hang on their front doors. The Observer newspaper

called to the Butler Gallery in Kilkenny last week and although the Gallery itself was closed, it was nice to be able to purchase a coffee and sit in the splendour of the beautiful building. Indeed it is becoming quite the spot, with

Kilkenny county Library to the front and Barnstorm Theatre Company recently taking up residence in the Home Rule Club on John’s quay. The Observer met up with Kilkenny native Daithí Holohan to chat with him about his current work and to take a look at the portfolio of one of the city’s best known artists.

Photo by Danny Lahart

KILKENNY BORN A son of Peig O’ Brien from Greenshill and of Johntown’s Eddie Holohan, Daithi has a wide and varied CV. Having attended Kilkenny CBS primary and secondary school he made his first foray into employment as an apprentice goldsmith with Rudolf Heltzel. Traditional values resonated and he spent a year in Connemara studying Gaelic language and

culture. He did a pre-diploma course in the National College of Art and Design and then completed his studies in the Fine Art Department under the guidance of faculty head Campbel Bruce. He was awarded a scholarship to Minneapolis College of Art and Design. He taught Life Drawing in Liberties Vocational School. Daithí’s community spirit saw him actively involved in mural projects in

Bishop Birch Place, Millennium Court and Loughboy Library. His involvement as Artist in Residence with Kilkenny Collective for Arts Talent was a satisfying and an emotionally rewarding experience. THE BUTLER GALLERY Daithí, often to his own detriment, is fully committed to his artistic endeavours. With a substantial body of work,

The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021




Travel & Leisure

A wonderful capture of The Butler Gallery by Kilkenny photographer Danny Lahart

recognised nationally and internationally, Daithí has established himself as one of Ireland’s great talents. Since the 1970’s Daithi has successfully exhibited, bringing his creative pieces to the public. Daithí is full of praise for the Butler Gallery and one senses his pride at having such a space in his city. “It is a beautiful structure and the designers got it just right with the use of light and the subdivision of exhibition space. There is an energy in the building that makes you feel like you are in a special place and this helps the artists and those viewing the art.” Evans’ Home came into Council ownership in 1997 and various proposals for a new use were considered before agreement was reached in 2009 to develop it as the new Butler Gallery in a partnership with Kilkenny Local Authorities. The development of a cultural quarter was prioritised as key to the economic and cultural development of Kilkenny City & County. The Butler Gallery is regarded as playing an integral part in this development for Kilkenny and thus this project received unanimous endorsement by the Elected Members of Kilkenny County Council. It was always important that the building be adapted for an appropriate use and in a sensitive manner. Daithí also paid tribute to those who tirelessly worked on the project for many years, saying that it can’t have been easy but that it has all paid off with a state of the art gallery. And what, we asked about his own work? “I have applied to exhibit at the Butler gallery and hope to hear from them over the next couple of months. “It is very much dependant on the Covid situation, which has

set everything back, but if all goes to plan my work will be seen here in the not too distant future. THE FUTURE IS BRIGHT FOR ARTISTS Speaking of the future, Daithí seemed upbeat. I think the Arts Council are fighting the fight for all artists and the Governments recent allocation of substantial funding shows that they recognize the enormous work and worth that the arts can bring to society . And it would appear that Daithi’s hope for good things is well founded. Current Arts Council Director ( and former director of The Kilkenny Arts Festival) Maureen Kennelly said the agency was focused on achieving the best outcomes for the arts in 2021 and beyond. “The arts sector is facing extraordinary challenges with remarkable strength, solidarity and resilience,” she said. “We will continue to work with the Department of Media, Tourism, Arts, Culture, Sport and the Gaeltacht, and on Minister Catherine Martin’s Cultural Recovery Task Force, to make sure that the arts play a full part in our national recovery.” Looking through Daithi’s recent catalogue of work, one cannot but admire the incredible volume of his work. His still life ‘Pipe Scissors Plant 1985’ is a simple production and tells the story of a man carefully tending his favourite pot plant. But a friend viewing it saw a woman wistfully tidying the house the morning of her husband’s death. This is one of Daithi’s strengths; he allows your imagination to flourish. PORTRAIT ARTIST As a portrait artist Daithí is exemplary, and is perhaps its foremost exponent. Daithí

treats his subjects with humanity and yet there is a depth and subtlety to be observed. ‘Kathleen 1994’ emits calmness, thoughtfulness, and serenity. ‘Shauna 2009’ exudes love, innocence and hope. But in his self-portraits Daithí bares his soul. Through his introspection he facilitates our intrusive inspection. The surreal images reveal the elemental battle of a tortured psyche. These portraits can haunt and fascinated you. Their honesty demands our reflective respect. Perusing Daithí’s work, one is reminded of Patrick Kavanagh’s short poems: No charlatan am I With poet’s mouth and idiot’s eye: I may not be divine But what is mine is mine In naked honesty. Of late, Daithí’s work has become more fluid and this allows a vibrant intensity explode from his canvas. No longer confined to a single form, the freedom engendered is celebrated in his enthusiastic labours. As he ages has Daithí settled into a calm controlled individual? I hope not! I agree with Fredrick Nietzsche who said “You must have chaos within you to create a dancing star.” With over a thousand drawing in his portfolio, Daithí has bequeathed a galaxy of dancing stars for our discernment and enjoyment. The French novelist Emile Zola could perhaps have been speaking of Daithí Holohan when he said ‘If you ask me what I came to do in this world, I, an artist, will answer you. I am here to speak out loud.” Daithí Holohan’s voice reverberates across the land and those of us living at this time are indeed fortunate to witness his genius.

Cassidy’s to handle 2023 Rugby World Cup travel By Fionn Davenport ittn.ie CASSIDY Travel, appointed as an official authorised subagent for the 2023 Rugby World Cup in France, has this week launched a priority reservation programme for those looking to travel to the games, in expectation of feverish demand among travel-starved Irish fans. Fans travelling to France will be able to avail of day trips, overnight breaks and themed holidays taking in the many delights which the country has to offer. Cassidy Travel will provide packages with match tickets to all of Ireland’s games, start-

ing with the pool games in Bordeaux on 9 September, 2023 against Europe Qualifier 2. Ireland play in Nantes the following week versus Asia Pacific 1 before the stiff challenge of reigning World champions South Africa on 23 September, 2023 in Paris, where the team also faces Scotland a fortnight later on October 7, 2023. With demand for tickets certain to outstrip supply, fans are being encouraged to register with cassidytravel.ie/PriorityPass, which will guarantee them advance access to ticketinclusive packages to any match during the tournament. Cassidy will have a range of options to suit all budgets and with some exciting surprises, including

quick day trips, themed holidays and tours which capture the famed gastronomy and unique culture of the country. “Rugby World Cup is always greeted with great anticipation by Irish fans, but the location in two years’ time makes it all the more mouth-watering,” says John Spollen, Director, Cassidy Travel. “With the ease of access and endless opportunities to tie in the many diverse attractions of the country with a thrilling programme of rugby, we are sure to see Ireland land on French shores in huge numbers. For our staff it’s an occasion to put their travel expertise and awardwinning customer service at the disposal of the rugby fan.”

American back on Dublin-US route AMERICAN Airlines has announced that it will be resuming its daily service between Dublin and Philadelphia on March 28, writes Fionn Davenport. It is all part of a general resumption of transatlantic services from airports across the UK and Europe including Barcelona, Frankfurt, London Heathrow, Madrid, Milan, Paris Charles de Gaulle, and Rome (FCO).

In addition, as part of American’s alliance with Alaska Airlines, the carrier will launch new service from LHR to Seattle (SEA), beginning March 30, operated on American’s Boeing 777-200. The service will initially operate three times weekly from March 30, until June 3 when the frequency will increase to daily. “We will be here for when our customers are ready to

fly,” said Tom Lattig, American’s Vice President EMEA Sales. “with cleanliness and safety top of mind.” American was the first US airline to introduce VeriFLY introduce, a mobile health passport which helps customers understand and verify their travel requirements. Customers can use the free app when travelling on American from all international destinations to the US.



The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021


‘When two tribes (don’t) go to war

IN the 80s Frankie goes to Hollywood had a hit with ‘when two tribes go to war’. For centuries, the two tribes were usually just a few fields apart or just cross the county boarder. In the days of yore it usually meant the King’s daughter was the prizes for the winning tribe. In Ireland , for years marriages took place between young adults who have known each other for years, some even the childhood sweethearts. But ‘times they are a changing’ as an elder statesperson might say. Now we live in a global village where not

simply different tribes end up in a family union but from many different nationalities. This is just the case when Karolina from Poland met Seamus from Ireland, they became the Mullaly family. For the two to meet fate had a major for the relationship to blossom. Maybe even serendipity. Karolina came to Ireland for a one-year spell as an au pair before a planned move to London, when the offer of a full-time job changed her plans. Having taken a two- and half-day bus journey in 2004 to get here packing her bags was

not very appealing and heading to the unknown capital to the UK. Even her two teddy bears she brought from Poland had enough of the traveling and one in fact decided enough was enough and still resides in Carlow within a caring family home. Seamus , a qualified engineer, and company director had travelled to the USA and after a successfully 6-year stay decided he too was going to head back home to Kilkenny. Seamus a keen fitness guy bumped into his future wife as the job offer she took was to be the receptionist in the Ormond Hotel Gym. A relationship was not on either of this lovely couple’s minds as both were in relationships. However, it was plain to see how much they had in common which made it extremely easy to start a simple platonic friendship. Circumstances change for us all and it was the same with Karoline and Seamus overtime as both were now single again, but romance was still not to the fore. Karoline moved to work with Seamus as an International Sales manager in 2014 utilising her studies and qualifications in marketing & Public Relationships and their friendship grew as they became closer. It is always said ‘ a relationship built on friendship will always last the test of time’ . It

was another 12 months before their friendship blossomed into todays wonderfully loving partnership. It was time now to take the big step and tie the knot. In Ireland, the wedding is usually in the local parish of the bride and the wedding breakfast with the family’s favourite hosteller. Karoline , as a proud Polish woman wanted her big day the city of Kraków back home in Poland. Would the groom’s men and Seamus party be willing to fly to Poland to be with him on his big day? Well Karolina just had to mention the price of the pint of Guinness, and it was “when are we going and how long are we staying”. Today everyone can see an example of how two nationalities can come together and integrate to have a wonder-

fully life with their love for the same but simple things in life like friendship, family and happiness. Their two beautiful children, Aaron and Steven 5 & 2 will attend our National schools and the excellent Polish school, Polska Szkoła im. św. Jana Pawła II w Kilkenny, have now the best of both traditions. Karolina ensures both have a knowledgeable understanding of Polish , Arts, culture, heritage, History, and language, all major components of the Twilight community group’s proposed International Cultural House, as is the proud way Seamus educates their children on Irish ways and language. In fact, in this integrated household 3 languages are used daily , Polish, English, and Irish. Stephen has three daughters from a previous relationship and his love of Irish can been exhibited by the way all 3 are fluent in Irish. So, what those the future hold. Commuting between Poland and Ireland has been curtailed by the covid19 pandemic. Both agree that they look forward to the return to normality so they can once again visit family and friends in Poland. Would you re locate to Poland on a permanent

basis? “off course” both reply in unison. Another example of how compatible Seamus and Karolina’s union is. I wonder will Frankie goes to Hollywood have to rewrite his 80s Hit . ‘when two tribe unite in love, peace, and harmony’. The Twilight Community Group would like to thank Seamus, Karolin, Aaron & Steven for allowing us to tell you their story.

The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021







The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021

The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021






The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021

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The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021

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Memoriams / Miracle Prayers

PHELAN (NEE SHIELS) MARY JOAN (JOANIE) ACKNOWLEDGEMENT Mary Joan (Joanie) London, formerly of Nuncio Road, Kilkenny. Joanie’s son Leo, and brothers Tommy and Mally would like to thank all who kindly offered sympathy by card, mass card, or digital communication, those who made a charitable donation in lieu of flowers, and those who braved rain at the cemetery. In particular much gratitude is due to Sammy at Johnston Funeral Directors, and Fr. Peter Muldowney of St. Patrick’s for their care, when pandemic excluded close family in the UK and US from attending. Mass will be offered up for your intentions.

JAMES (JIM) POWER 1ST ANNIVERSARY IN LOVING MEMORY OF JIM, LATE OF REEDEN, BALLYCALLAN, CO. KILKENNY WHOSE 1ST ANNIVERSARY OCCURS ON APRIL 5TH. We think of you in silence We talk about you too We have such lovely memories But we wish we still had you

JOSEPHINE RYAN BIRTHDAY REMEMBRANCE Birthday remembrance of Josephine Ryan, Greenfields, Freshford Road, Kilkenny whose birthday occurs at this time. Loved and missed every day. Phil, Fran, Martin, Anne, Richard grandchildren and great grandchildren.

We travel to your resting place Flowers we place with care But no one knows the heartache As we turn and leave you there

The Miraculous prayer to St. Theresa the Little Flower

Loved and remembered always by Geraldine, Nicola and Elaine son-in-law Kenneth, Grandchild Daniel sister Anna, nieces and nephews sisters-in-law, brother-in-law. May He Rest in Peace

The Miracle Prayer

Dear heart of Jesus, in the past I have asked many favours. This time I ask you this special one (mention favour). Take it dear heart of Jesus and place it within your heart where your father sees it. Then in his merciful eyes it will become your own favour not mine. Amen. Say this prayer three times for three days and your favour will be granted. Never been known to fail. Must promise publication of prayer. AON

O Glorious St Theresa, whom Almighty God has raised up to aid and counsel mankind I implore your miraculous intercession. So powerful are you in obtaining every need of body and soul our Holy Mother Church proclaims you a “Prodigy of Miracles.The Greatest Saint of Modern Times”now I fervently beseech you to answer my petition (mention here) and to carry out our promise of doing good on earth ,of letting fall from Heaven a shower of roses. Henceforth dear little flower I will fulfil your plea “to be made known everywhere”and I will never cease to lead others to Jesus through you .Amen. Say prayer for nine days, by the fourth ask for a sign, if prayer is to be answered. Between the 4th and 9th day you will see in a magazine or receive roses, also can get a strong scent of roses in home even if no roses are present. Must promise publication. Publication promised for favours received. M.D.




The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021

The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021



Memoriams/Miracle prayers

News Planning notices

Planning notices KILKENNY COUNTY COUNCIL I, Patrick Neary, hereby apply to the above Planning Authority for Full Planning Permission to erect a new two storey 3 Bedroom house, to provide new entrance gates to existing house, for part demolition of existing shed, for minor alterations to existing dropped entrance to existing site, for connection to all services together with all associated site works all located on my property at Kickham Street, Kilkenny. The planning application may be inspected, or purchased at a fee not exceeding the reasonable cost of making a copy, at the offices of the Planning Department, Kilkenny County Council, County Hall, John Street, Kilkenny, during its public opening hours 9 a.m.- 1.00 p.m. and 2.00 p.m. – 4.00 p.m. Monday to Friday, and a submission or observation in relation to the application may be made to the Planning Authority in writing on payment of the prescribed fee (€20.00) within the period of 5 weeks beginning on the date of receipt by the Authority of the planning application, and such submissions or observations will be considered by the Planning Authority in making a decision on the application. The Planning Authority may grant permission subject to or without conditions, or may refuse to grant permission. Michael Condon MRIAI, Architect, MRC Design Ltd – 1 City Wall, James Street, Kilkenny Ph. 087 2032869




The Kilkenny Observer Friday 26 March 2021

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Kilkenny Observer - Friday 26th March 2021  

Kilkenny's favourite local newspaper. In the shops to pick up for free each week.

Kilkenny Observer - Friday 26th March 2021  

Kilkenny's favourite local newspaper. In the shops to pick up for free each week.