Kilkenny Observer 7th June 2024

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Friday 7th June 2024 Observer The Kilkenny EVERY FRIDAY Tel: 056 777 1463 E: W: FREE EDITION Kids Summer Fun at Market Cross Shopping Centre See Page 11 Global Report Page 30 Found Guilty So, what's next for Donald Trump?   FREE
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Empty houses scandal

Campaign group calls for urgent attention to 3,140 homes in Kilkenny

There are 3,140 empty homes in Kilkenny — more than enough for everybody who needs them, campaign group Uplift has said.

Uplift, a people-powered campaign group, is urging political candidates, if elected, to prioritise bringing empty houses back into use, ahead of the local and European elections. Research commissioned by

Uplift has shown that Kilkenny County Council could be doing much more to turn empty houses into homes. Uplift’s research has uncovered that councils could do far more to buy and lease empty houses; make it easier for families to access unused grants; work with businesses to turn empty main streets into vibrant com-

All aboard with extra trains ...

Travellers between Dublin, Kilkenny, Carlow and Waterford will now have the option of a later service between the capital city and the south east, under a new draft timetable published by Irish Rail. The new services will add capacity to the line with a 20:20 service leaving Heuston and continuing to Waterford City, and a late service leaving Waterford also at 20:20. Both services will stop at all stations on the route, including Muine Bheag, Kilkenny and Thomastown. These services will increase connectivity not only between the south east and the capital, but also between the towns in the region.

Until now, the latest train going further south than Carlow town left Heuston station at 18:35.

munities; accurately count the number of vacant and derelict buildings in the county.

Patrick Kelleher, a Campaigner at Uplift, told The Kilkenny Observer: “No matter who we are or where we come from, we all need a home where we can sleep at night, knowing that we will wake up tomorrow feeling safe and secure.

“But far too many of us are living on edge, not knowing where we’ll live month to month, year to year. We have so much space for everyone, but can’t use it.

“With elections on the horizon, politicians need to know that the only way to get and stay elected is to open empty homes for everyone who needs one, no exceptions. So we’re asking

election candidates to sign up to our pledge now, to show voters that they will prioritise turning empty houses into homes if they get elected.”

For more information contact

Patrick Kelleher at Uplift, on or 0870687246.

Meanwhile, the monthly Homeless Report for April, issued by the Department of

Farming a key issue in elections

The farming vote has become a key electoral battleground in rural areas as agricultural issues have dominated the debate ahead of the European election. A hos t of candidates, particularly independents, are lo cked in a fierce contest to win over farmers, whose support could prove decisive in the final tally, with

red tape, a diminishing CAP budget and climate change key factors for farmer voters.

A Sunday Independent/ Ireland Thinks poll put independents the most popular political grouping in the co untry, just days ahead of the public going to the polls to elect 14 MEPs. Independent candidates Luke ‘Ming’ Flanagan and

Ciaran Mullooly in the North West, along with Clare compatriots Michael McNamara and Eddie Punch in the South, are hoping for a substantial swing in the farming v ote away from established parties, capitalising on a surge in public support for independent candidates in recent polls.

This comes as Minister for Agriculture Charlie McCon -


alogue hit out at candidates m aking unrealistic promises to farmers.

In an interview with the Farming Independent, he said: “You’ll have candidates looking to do the devil and all who have no intention whatsoever in taking on an y responsibility, so it will be very hard for some of them to deliver.”

However, Mr Punch said

the minister should focus on what he can do instead of criticising candidates who want to make change.

A host of MEP candidates raised farming issues in recent days. Flanagan hailed his role in the CAP negotiations and said, because of his w ork, farmers on the minimum payment would see their payments rise from €160/ha to €240/ha by 2026.

Housing, Local Government and Heritage, shows an increase in the number of people accessing emergency accommodation in April which has affected 14,009 people, up 143, from 13,866 people in March. The figures include 9,803 adults and 4,206 children.

See also Page 10

Forget about miracles: we need dose of reality ...

“I could say that most of the contentious issues the public have been enraged about in the run-up to the local elections don’t particularly affect me, given I am in the autumn of my years. But I would be wrong to take such a stance.

“Let’s do the checklist... Paul Hopkins Page 8

Recognition of Palestine step in right direction

“I’m enjoying a real sunshine feeling, not due to summer weather but to that warm sense when you are proud of your country. Ireland’s recognition of the State of Palestine together with Spain and Norway will hopefully be a stepping stone towards a two- state solution and peace between Palestine and Israel...” Marianne Heron Page 12

Is this a cure for the hangover?

Is there a definitive cure for a hangover? Possibly, according to the latest scientific thought. When ingested, a novel hydrogel prevents alcohol from entering the blood and stops the compound acetaldehyde from accumulating. Full report Page 18

3 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024 Observer The Kilkenny EVERY FRIDAY GETTING IN TOUCH WITH THE TEAM SALES E: T: 087 382 0109 or 087 342 1958 EDITOR E: SPORTS E:
no holds
MARIANNE HERON A straight shooter. Considerate and wise words JOHN ELLIS Great advice. Your money in mind GERRY MORAN Quirky take on bright side of life
And with

Didn’t we do well in national photo awards

Two photographs of St Nicholas’s Well in Killamery won first and third prize in this year’s WikiLovesFolklore photo competition which was held in February and March of this year.

WikiLovesFolklore is an initiative by Wikimedia Commons which is held annually to entice people to upload media of a folkloristic

content. These can depict festivals, music, dance, cuisine, sports or other customs of a certain region. Wikimedia Commons is a sister project of Wikipedia and a crowdsourced media repository which can be used by individuals, scholars, journalists and other people in search of free photographs – attribution may be required

depending on the copyright license of the individual image or other media.

The jury this year consisted of Oein DeBhairduin and Jon O’Sullivan, both renowned Irish folklorists.

This year’s first prize is a photograph of St Nicholas’s Well in Killamery, an early monastic site with an impressive high cross, bullaun

stones, medieval grave slabs and the holy well.

The second prize went to a photograph of spectators of the St Patrick’s Parade in Cork. Photographs of St Patrick’s Parades are regular entries for WikiLovesFolklore, as March 17 falls conveniently into the period of the competition.

The third prize was awarded

to another photograph of St Nicholas’s Holy Well, but with the former Protestant Church of St Nicholas in the background. This church was built as part of the Board of First Fruits initiative in 1815 and is a listed building. There is no historic connection of St Nicholas to the site (not like in Jerpoint Park), but the founder of the early

Christian monastery in the 7th century is reputed to have been St Gobán Fionn, according to Canon Carrigan. Gobán Fionn’s feast day on December 6 happens to fall onto the feast day of St Nicholas.

*More information can be found on the Irish Wikimedia’s blog post on

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London hedge fund bets Glanbia share price will drop

A London hedge fund has disclosed that it holds a bet against the share price of Glanbia’s shares worth around €33m.

Filings with the Central Bank show that Mirabella Financial Services has a short bet against 0.68% of the shares in the Kilkenny-based global company company, with its share currently trading around €18.50. When a hedge fund executes a short trade, it borrows shares in a company from a stockbroker and sells them on the open market, hoping the share price will drop in value. If it does, the trader can buy

‘More training for judges’  dealing with sexual violence

Barrister Cynthia Ní

Mhurchú has said that Irish courts are a daunting place for the victims of sexual violence and more training for Irish judges around sexual violence cases in our courts would be a first step in moving towards a more victim centred approach, as laid down in the Istanbul convention and EU Directive on Combating Violence Against Women.

Ms Ní Mhurchú, a candidate in the European elections, made the calls on the back of a number of visits to women’s aid shelters in Tipperary, Carlow and Waterford. She pointed to the sensitivity that can surround a domestic violence and sexual violence case and the importance that the victim, normally a woman, feels comfortable, listened to, and understood.

She cited a case from 2022, that was covered in the media, where a judge – albeit in a different legal jurisdiction -  in Tyrone, uttered seriously concerning remarks when sentencing a prolific sex offender, who sexually attacked a woman he met through a dating website, by advising him to “find a wife or partner and get a family and a home together”.

She told The Kilkenny Observer: “Victims are usually terrorised and very reluctant to apply to the courts for protection.  I would welcome any measure that increases judicial understanding of issues relevant to their role in rape, domestic violence and sexual assault cases. Judges are human and are expected to have extensive knowledge on many areas of society. Training could be delivered by other judges, medical practitioners, former victims, and specialist psychologists. “The court room can be a cold and daunting place for a victim of domestic and sexual violence and we need to ensure that we do everything in our power to ensure women are not prevented from coming forward or too scared to prosecute such crimes. The key thing is that the training should be structured and regular, not ad hoc.”

Statistics seen by Ms Ní Mhurchú show that between 70% and 80% of sexual offences reported to the Gardai  between 2018 and 2022 have remained unsolved. She has described this as a failure of our justice system to adequately catch those who are committing sexual violence.

the shares at a cheaper price, thus making a profit. However, if the shares rise in price, the trader will lose money.

Glanbia’s share price has been rising steadily for the last 18 months, from just under €11 at the end of 2022 to its recent high of around €18.50.

In February, the company announced that its profits had risen for the year to $298.1m, up from $248m the year before, despite revenues dropping by 8.7pc to $5.4bn.

In a subsequent trading statement for the first quarter of this year, the company said its revenues had declined

again, by 5.5% compared to the same period in 2023. It said that while its volumes were up for the period, its prices were down by 6.9%.

It nonetheless forecasted growth of between 5% and 8% for this financial year.

Glanbia has endured a difficult time with shareholders in recent months, especially around its proposed remuneration policy for its directors for the period 2024 to 2026. Glanbia is in the midst of a €100m share buyback programme. The first €50m is underway, with more than €30m of shares bought back from shareholders.

Teresa Heeney, CEO Early Childhood Ireland, has written to The Kilkenny Observer in response to our report titled ‘Ní Mhurchú: New rules risk making childminders redundant’ published on May 31, having already contacted MEP candidate Cynthia Ní Mhurchú directly

Ms Heeney writes: “As the leading membership and advocacy organisation in the Early Years and School Age Care sector, Early Childhood Ireland was very surprised to see this commentary, especially as the draft regulations of this essential Early Years and School Age Care service have been worked on, in consultation with childminders, for the last two years.

Childminding plays a significant role in the provision of Early Years and School Age Care. It is often a nurturing environment for children, a home-from-home, where the child is treated as one of the family.

“Approximately 52,000 children in Ireland are being looked after by an estimated 13,000 childminders. Despite these significant figures, fewer than 1% of childminders are registered with the Child and Family Agency, Tusla. Childminding is almost entirely unregulated in Ireland. This is not good for children, families or childminders.

The introduction of childminding-specific regulations is not new. Regulating childminding is a Government commitment in the National Action Plan for Childminding 2021-2028 and it is also in the Government strategy for young children, ‘First 5’.

“The draft regulations are the result of extensive consultation with childminders and were recently put out for a 12-week public consultation. Early Childhood Ireland therefore finds MEP candidate Cynthia Ní Mhurchú’s call on Minister Roderic O’Gorman to ‘revisit the concerns of existing

Response to Ní Mhurchú on childcare

childminders’ perplexing, as addressing these concerns was one of the main purposes of the public consultation that closed earlier this month,” writes Ms Heeney. “Regulation is necessary. It is difficult to evaluate the safety and quality of Childminding provision for children when it is a largely unregulated and unregistered service. It is also difficult to develop the quality of Childminding services, including the child safeguarding and pedagogical practice of childminders, and to provide supports to children with additional needs in their settings when childminders are unregistered and are unknown to statutory and voluntary organisations. Bringing childminders within the regulated Early Years and School Age Care sector will ensure better child safeguarding through mandatory Garda vetting; it will introduce adequate standards of safety and

numbers of children; and it will provide reassurance to families who use registered childminders. It will also provide a level playing field for all registered childminders and will allow families to avail of the National Childcare Scheme (NCS) subsidy towards the cost of their children’s care,” she continues.

“Early Childhood Ireland welcomes the draft childminding-specific regulations, as noted in our recent submission to the Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth’s public consultation. We strongly believe that these regulations will benefit children by improving quality and safeguarding measures in childminding settings. Children have waited long enough for these regulations, and their implementation is an essential step in the path to a fit-for-purpose Early Years and School Age Care system in Ireland.”

Our fishing industry plight ‘ignored in Europe’

Aontú’s candidate in the European elections is asking if Irish MEPS’S have adopted an ‘abstentionist policy’ when it comes to representing the rights of the Irish fishing industry in the European Parliament.

In a stinging rebuke, Aontú’s Ireland South election candidate Patrick Murphy alleges that in his entire time advocating for the industry at the highest

levels in Brussels, not one elected Irish representative has ever attended a meeting with the Advisory Councils, which play a key role in charting the course of legislation pertaining to the industry.

He said: “It’s a downright disgrace. I have been sitting on Advisory Councils for the past right years and not once has an Irish MEP attended one of these meetings. The

advisory councils are tasked with drafting advice and examining legislation for the fishing industry and it is quite incredible that in all those years , not one has thought it important enough to turn up and examine what he or she can do to help a valuable industry that is being left to flounder.”

Mr Murphy who says he took the decision to run for theEuropean elections

himself, as an Aontú candidate in Ireland South, in a bid to fight for the rights of fishermen and women all over the country.

“I was and am so appalled by the blasé way that hardworking Irish Fishermen are being treated that I made the decision to run myself as God knows they need people not afraid to stand up and fight for their interests. We have a group of

people, elected to represent the people who voted them into their highly paid jobs and not only are they not representing the people of Ireland, but it could also be argued that they are actively working against us. It is actually unbelievable. Almost,” he said.

“They are not standing up for an industry that is literally going under.

“Look at the facts ---fish

prices are going up, on an Island country that should be heavily promoting this rich and natural resource and we are hugely anxious about jobs. We have more than 8,000 people directly employed in the industry with some 7,000 more indirectly employed. The value to the Irish economy is circa €1.3 Billion and the sector is frankly being treated with contempt.

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The Fact Of The Matter



Will reality hit home in local elections?

I could say that most of the contentious issues the public have been enraged about in the run-up to the local elections don’t particularly affect me, given I am in the autumn of my years. But I would be wrong to take such a stance. Let’s do the checklist.

Housing: the shortage of homes and the cost of such are again going through the roof. Housing Minister Darragh O’Brien, each time I hear him rolled out on RTE, doesn’t seem to know what the plan is, if indeed there is a plan – although he will argue differently – and the rest of the crew, and the Opposition, just spend their time shouting down each other.

And still the homeless Irish continues growing, unabated, 13,531 plus and rising – 4,000 of them children. So much idle land in State hands, social housing not within every one’s reach, excessive

levies against potential builders, the shortage of such what with apprenticeship ‘restrictions’. In the end the target of building houses is simply not being met. Those looking for one should move further afield, or join the brain drain.

I’m alright. I have my house but increasingly feel under pressure to trade down from my four-bed in which I live alone. I would be happy to do so – if only to de-hoard – but the finances for such just don’t add up.

Immigration: if all we seem capable of doing is moving dozens of tents from one end of a canal to the other, and there is a complete lack of facilities in towns and villages –another election issue in itself – where the State is placing asylum seekers, then we really need to say, Halt! We’re full up. We just don’t have the infrastructure. And, anyway, why the years of delay in allowing qualified migrants

into the workplace? They, for the most, want to contribute. We could do with some of them in our undermanned hospitals.

I have been there, twice in 2022. My Night Of The Living Dread On A Trolley. Yes, I have private insurance but my tale of 17 hours endurance is too complicated to detail here.

People, some mere teens, are literally dying because of staff under huge duress – repeal the employment moratorium now. Another €500m. thrown at health since January, to no avail. With ageing and its accompanying frailty I don’t want – ever – to go back into hospital and I live in fear of being shoved off to a care home that years later will be found utterly wanting.

Add to the mix, 8,000 Ukrainian pensioners to live on €38 a week.

There’s the lack of access to

specialist care for children with special needs, many held in ‘detention’ for years, according to the Children’s Ombudsman, and the CAMHS south Kerry scandal – and those who purport to govern and look after us, those we vote into power,

“There’s also the question of Ireland potentially losing its ‘veto’...

talking over each other over Claire Byrne or Pat Kenny, without showing an inkling of the dire straits we are in.

With being a nation of not much more than five million people, it shouldn’t need a miracle to fix things. Get the civil servants off their backsides and don’t just talk the talk.

Inflation is unavoidable given the global scenario.

I’m okay. I am on my own.

Seldom more than one light switched on at any time, and the heating subsidies were a great help. But how about a young couple, one a primary school teacher, the other a nurse, with two children aged under 10 who, being children, need constant warmth and food in their mouths? I can’t imagine how they are coping, never mind the crisis in childcare. Meanwhile, there’s the European elections which could mark a turning point in EU

politics. The European Parliament has traditionally been a progressive force in EU policymaking, often pushing for more far-reaching ‘solutions’ than the council. This dynamic could fundamentally change, with the power balance expected to shift in favour of more ultra rightwing forces.

But, even without a turn towards a Eurosceptic majority, the outcome will determine the direction of policies decided by the Parliament and shape EU politics in the next five years. There’s also the question of Ireland potentially losing its ‘veto’. Let’s be careful what you wish for – vote for. I detect a lot of apathy out there. But vote you must if you wish to see some semblance of democracy. Where every Irish citizen has a roof over their head and food in their belly. And are healthy and safe. Miracle, indeed...

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'Children in A&E daily with self-harm or suicidal ideation'

Leading child psychologist Dr Elizabeth Barrett has said that typically Temple St hospital has children every day presenting with suicidal ideation and self-harm. Suicide was the No.1 cause of death of people under 25 in Ireland, which is a really stark figure, she said.

"Anxiety in its various shapes and forms is the number one cause of referral

of paediatric patients to our liaison team in Temple Street. So anxiety also very, very significant problem for children and adolescents.”

Dr Barrett was speaking to Dr Afif El Khuffash on The Baby Tribe podcast, about childhood mental health and parenting.

When asked what is driving this increase, Dr Barrett said: “We've got very good in

The housing target 'needs to be raised' to 50,000 a year'

The monthly Homeless Report for April, issued by the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage, shows an increase in the number of people accessing emergency accommodation in April which has affected 14,009 people, up 143, from 13,866 people in March. The figures include 9,803 adults and 4,206 children.

David Carroll, CEO of Depaul, said: “These latest figures are stark and underline the urgent need for recommendations made in The Housing Commission Report to be implemented. The commission advises that Ireland’s housing deficit be addressed through ‘emergency action’. This is something that we in Depaul have been calling for consistently.

“The Housing Commission Report also highlights th at there is a current deficit of between 212,500 and 256,000 homes in Ireland. In 2023, 11,939 new social homes were delivered by Local Authorities and Approved Housing B odies, as well as approximately 4,000 affordable homes. Depaul supports the Commission's opinion that a radical increase in social housing stock is required," he said.

“ Depaul is calling for Government housing targets t o be raised from 33,000 homes to 50,000 homes for 2025, in line with a comprehensive review of national ho using policy being conducted on how the housing deficit , highlighted by the commission, can be delivered over the next 10 years.”

Mr Carroll told The Kilkenny Observer: “Depaul has 645 temporary accommodation beds in

society at talking about wellbeing and how to promote positive mental health. We're very good at saying to children and young people, if they're experiencing difficulties with their mental health, whether that's mood or anxiety or selfharm or suicidal thoughts, we really encourage them to ask for help.

"But when they ask for help, how do they access supports?

And I think we have a real problem because epidemiology and needs have changed and the system is very much lagging behind being responsive to the needs of children and young people when they do look for help," she said.

"If you have a mild anxiety problem, and anxiety is such a common part of everyday life, and you know that there would be basic psychologi-

cal supports for young people who are experiencing what might be anxiety in the very normal realm. Whereas if you have anxiety that is well established and getting in the way of everyday life, and you meet, as we would say, the criteria for an anxiety disorder, and you might need more specialist help, that we could easily signpost you to those resources.

"But I think currently in Ireland we're just not staffed and resourced well enough to do that. So we have a problem with pathways, but also a problem with capacity in the system”.

* The Baby Tribe is hosted by Neonatologist & Paediatrician Afif El-Khuffash and Katie Mugan from

Ireland, and we continue to see increased demand for these by both families and individuals alike. We are also seeing an increase in poor mental health amongst our service users, which is exacerbated by the uncertainty, insecurity, and relative isolation of their environment.

“Alongside the acceleration in housing delivery,  Depaul is calling for a s ignificant increase in investment in mental health s upports for people experiencing homelessness. Even if ho using supply was to materialise tomorrow, the amount of serious and enduring mental issues being exp erienced by the people we work with is truly worrying and will provide barriers to people being able t o escape the trap of emergency accommodation and rough sleeping.”

“This week, we joined with other civil society organisations, including colleagues across the homelessness sector, to voice o ur concerns about the lack of accommodation for  people who are seeking international protection in Ireland. There are currently almost 2,000 people in this situation, who find themselves without safe places t o stay or access to basic hygiene facilities. We know that this not only presents immediate challenges, but also longer-term physical and mental health impacts for those who spend prolonged periods in homelessness.”

Mr Carroll said the issue could not be divorced from the publication of April's figures.  Depaul were calling again for a whole of Government approach to this issue.

On behalf of local hotels and guesthouses in Kilkenny Patrick Kickham-Lennon Chair, Irish Hotels Federation (IHF South East branch [pictured above], has written an open letter to Local Election candidates about supporting local tourism jobs.

He writes: "A flourishing tourism and hospitality industry is vital for Ireland’s prosperity and economic well-being, both nationally and at a local level. Our industry plays an essential role in delivering balanced regional growth and makes a major economic contribution to Kilkenny. As the country’s largest indigenous employer, tourism enterprises support over 270,000 livelihoods in every town and county, including some 4,600 in Kilkenny.

"While we have seen a

welcome recovery in recent years, tourism and hospitality businesses are now facing a significant number of pressing challenges with implications for the longerterm sustainable development of our industry. These include the exceptionally high cost of doing business, pressures on consumer finances, skills shortages and an uncertain outlook for key tourism markets."

Local authorities had an essential role to play in supporting our local tourism economy by helping to ensure the right conditions were in place to sustain further recovery. It was therefore of the utmost importance that elected councillors do everything in their power to make sure that tourism was at the top of the agenda while working

closely with local tourism stakeholders to support growth and sustain local employment.

"I would urge you to support our local tourism policy priorities with:

"Greater collaboration with the tourism sector. It is vital that local authorities support greater development of tourism at a local level, working closely and collaboratively with state agencies and industry bodies in delivering regional tourism initiatives and helping tourism enterprises to diversify and attract visitors all year round.

Support for communitybased tourism.

Significant untapped potential exists to support tourism initiatives driven by local community groups, including events that will

deepen links with the diaspora.

"Also, there must be a greater focus on efficiencies and cost savings in the delivery of local government services, and this must be reflected in reduced local authority rates. This is of critical importance given the serious competitiveness issues businesses are facing with spiralling costs of doing business."

He said a greater focus was required to address the shortage of housing accommodation which was having a serious impact on the ability of businesses and tourism enterprises to attract employees.

Finally, he called for a reduction in the rate of VAT to 9% for food-related services, where margins were under tremendous pressure.

Free online course on new law for local businesses

The Law Society is inviting business owners in Kilkenny to register for its upcoming, free online course on Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) standards and reporting obligations. Following the introduction of a new Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD) by the EU, large com-

panies are required to report on their ESG standards. It is also increasingly an area of focus for businesses of all sizes in terms of business strategy and planning.

As part of its public legal education programme the Law Society runs a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) every year providing access to

free legal education for the public. This year’s course is focused on ESG and runs for five weeks from June 11 to July 31, with new materials for the weekly modules released every Tuesday. Participants in the course are encouraged to dedicate at least one hour a week to watch videos and to engage

and learn at their own pace. Expert speakers, lawyers and academics will examine many topics, including developing an ESG strategy for businesses, ESG reporting obligations, biodiversity and ecosystems, climate change and decarbonisation, diversity and inclusion, and ESG corporate governance issues.

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Open letter on supporting local tourism
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As I See It Marianne

Recognising Palestine: step in the right direction

I’m enjoying a real sunshine feeling, not due to summer weather but to that warm sense when you are proud of your country. Ireland’s recognition of the State of Palestine together with Spain and Norway will hopefully be a stepping stone towards a two- state solution and peace between Palestine and Israel. It may prompt other nations to follow Ireland’s example, adding to the 146 members of the United Nations which recognise the state of Palestine. It won’t stop the current genocide being wreaked on Gaza though, where the Palestinian death toll is 35,000 and recently 50 were killed in an attack on a refugee camp in Rafa.

Nothing so far has been enough to stop Benjamin Netanyahu of his avowed attempt to wipe out Hamas, not the fact that his arrest is sought by the International Criminal Court as a war criminal, nor resounding

international condemnation and urgent demands for a ceasefire.

Responding to Hamas’ horrific October 7 terrorist attack Netanyahu is blind to the immense damage being wreaked, not only on the innocent civilian population of ruined Gaza but on Israel itself. Far from getting rid of Hamas, the war and its atrocities will be an effective recruitment drive for Hamas and others bent on retaliation. There is the wholesale damage the continuation of the genocide is wreaking on Israel’s standing in the world, where the dehumanising of Palestinians repeats the worst atrocities in the long history of colonisation.

History has a lot to answer for in the troubled fate of Palestine. In 1917 the Balfour Declaration gave British support for the establishment of a homeland for the Jewish people in Palestine without ever specifying how much ter-

ritory that homeland should occupy. The obligations of the 1919 British Mandate of Palestine were, Lloyd George pointed out to establish that home “without detriment to the rights of the Arab population”.

George Habib Antonius, author of The Arab Awakening, while recognising the horrors of anti- Jewish Nazism, raised concerns about the fate of religious coexistence in Palestine in the face of Zionist colonisation. In 1938 he wrote prophetically: “ No code of morals can justify the persecution of one people in an attempt to relieve the persecution of another.”

In 1948 Winston Churchill’s fears, that “the Jewish State armed to the teeth, given the menace of war” by surrounding Arabs would lead to confrontation, were realised in 1948 when with the declaration of the State of Israel and the War of Independence during which three quarters

Enough is enough - match day traffic

An open letter to Kilkenny County Council, Kilkenny GAA and Kilkenny Gardai

Dear Superintendent, Kilkenny County Council CEO and Chairman of Kilkenny County Board.

We all love hurling and we are blessed to have a facility like Nowlan Park on our door steps but the lack of regard for residents in the surrounding areas is simply unacceptable and has to change.

At this stage, there is no excuse for the chaotic scenes we saw on Saturday and almost every big game before it.

We are just 3 years away from Nowlan Park’s centennial year - how long does it take to get on top of traffic and parking management? Maybe another hundred years?

We all know where the indiscriminate parking takes place. We’ve seen it more than a thousand times. There’s hundreds of photos and videos online, possibly the best recce you could ask for.

As usual on match day, cars will be parked on every grass margin available, if you want to visit a deceased loved one in St Kieran’s cemetery the car park will be full of match goers cars, if you own a business in the Hebron industrial estate you will be lucky if you can get in or out of it, if you live on O’Loughlin Road or in Assumption Place, Hebron Park, Ossory Park, Bishop Birch Place or any of the surrounding areas, you will be lucky if you can get in or out of your home, you will probably have someone block-

ing your entrance and god help you if you need an emergency service like an ambulance.

It’s not just the immediate vicinity either, even the green area in Newpark is abused, lines of cars parked illegally up and down the ring road, cars drive over the double yellow lines on Pennefeather Road and park on the grass margin and the list goes on. It’s a familiar list of problems because it’s the same list every time and has been for decades.

So why, if we all know exactly what will happen on match days, why is it allowed to happen? Why is the blind eye turned? Why is every car parked on a grass verge or abandoned in front of a drive way, not given a ticket? Why does Kilkenny County Council not put in physical obstructions like wooden stakes to stop illegal parking and protect the green areas? Why doesn’t the GAA take action? The mind boggles. Every car parked illegally should get a ticket and the money from every ticket

should be spent on improving the local area in consultation with residents that have tolerated this for years.

Surely, between Kilkenny County Council, Kilkenny GAA and Kilkenny Gardai, three of the biggest and most respected organisations in the County, a solution can be found.

Forgive my anger, but after decades of being ignored, surely my anger and that of almost every local resident in the area, is as expected as the parking issues at the next match. Why are we being ignored?

Why are so many local residents being ignored? Why are we, as elected public representatives being ignored?

We want answers, we want action, we want a plan and not just the same plan that is given to us every time we get angry about this issue, we want a plan that will be forcefully implemented on a permanent basis an that addresses all of these issues for local residents and allows us all to enjoy our hurling without the inexcusable poor management of traffic and

It’s a simple ask and one that must not be ignored anymore!

Please, on behalf of all of the local residents, take action now.

Yours in hope, Andrew McGuinness

of a million Palestinians fled their country. In 1967 in the Six Day’s War territory was redrawn when Israel took Gaza and the West Bank. Attempts find a two-state

“Adding to the 146 members of the UN which recognise the state of Palestine..

solution stretch as far back as 1948 with endless hostilities and peace talks in between without lasting agreement being reached. When the war on Gaza ends, as it inevitably must, what hope is there of finding effective means of persuasion to bring about a solution? Considering the way that verbal condemnation has had no effect on Israel and that neither the US nor Europe have been prepared to take the measures which might have stopped Israel’s war, is there any hope of resolution?

Israel is the largest recipient of US foreign aid and the way that the US has continued to supply Israel with arms and finance while asking futilely for a ceasefire seems counter intuitive to me. The EU have been unwilling to apply more effective persuasive measures, like cutting trade agreements with Israel, to stop the carnage. Money talks but it hasn’t been allowed to speak to end the conflict.

There are major challenges to be faced when addressing how to arrive at a country shared justly between Palestine and Israel. There is the question of the estimated five million Palestinian refugees who may wish to return to their country, the issue of where the lines of Palestinian and Israeli territories are to be drawn, and an ending of Israeli occupied territories in the West Bank and Gaza. Aside from that, there is the huge task of rebuilding Gaza and its ruined facilities and homes and how that should be financed.

Can neighbours, where there has been enmity, killing and dispossession, become friends?

In Ireland you could say that was achieved through the long drawn-out peace process and where thoughtful people are working towards unity, not just demanding it.

See also Page 22

Supplements to support your fitness regime

Last week I talked about getting active especially with the bright evenings here now. I mentioned protein and how much we need on a daily basis. The body needs lots of different nutrients to keep support energy, keep your muscles, bones, and joints strong and healthy so that you can achieve your fitness goals. Energy is the first thing that comes to mind, or rather the lack of it. Lots of customers tell me they want to exercise but they just don’t have the energy. A healthy balanced diet rich in wholegrains, nuts, seeds, protein rich foods, fruit and vegetables should provide you with a good combination to support energy. Be mindful that you need to eat enough food to provide you with the energy that you need in a day. If you eat too much then you can feel sluggish and gain weight. And if you don’t eat enough you can end up feeling exhausted and lacking in motivation.

If you are eating well and you are still tired you could consider a multi vitamin or a supplement of B vitamins. They play a key role in transforming the food you eat into energy. Solgar

B-Complex 100 offers all eight B-Complex vitamins and is ideal to support energy, the nervous system, and skin, hair and nails too. B vitamins can help you stay energised so you can achieve your fitness goal. Your joints may need a bit of help too especially if they are creaking or you are experiencing any discomfort. Omega Oils, Collagen, Glucosamine are popular joint support supplements. Or, Solgar 7 is another great option. It contains a unique blend of UC-11 Collagen, Turmeric, Boswellia, Ginger, and white willow bark. This combination may

help to reduce pain, discomfort, and inflammation. Muscle pain and cramps are common after training or exercising. Magnesium can help support muscle health and reduce cramps. You can choose from powder, tablets, or if you prefer, there’s BetterYou Magnesium Spray for external use. If you have a question about your exercise regime why not give us a call. Or drop in for free chat with one of our Personal Fitness Trainers, Aoife Rose, in our Wexford store, or Cal in Kilkenny. We would love to help you achieve your goal.

12 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024
Shop online at where you’ll be able to take a look at these brands. Natural Health Store, Market Cross Shopping Centre | Phone: 056 7764538 | Email:
13 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024 Advertisement

This year’s VHI Women’s Mini Marathon witnessed an extraordinary journey of resilience and gratitude as Orla Canning, a simultaneous kidney and pancreas transplant recipient, from Carlow town, takes part in the event with her six friends (from Carlow, Laois and Kildare) to raise funds for the Irish Kidney Association (IKA).   Orla is just one of several inspiring women who stepped out to complete the 10km distance.

Brave hearts and the Mini Marathon SPECIAL REPORT

Three cousins from Kilmanagh, Kilkenny – Louise Ronan (18) and Katie Ronan (16) and their older cousin Sharon Gleeson – were supporting the work of the IKA as their 88-year-old grandfather John Ronan is undergoing dialysis treatment With them was John’s daughter Nora Gleeson (Sharon’s mother) and her sister-in-law Assumpta O’Brien.

Orla  Canning (33) is celebrating a remarkable recovery from the double transplant she received in 2022 that has given her a new lease on life after nearly 21 years of insulin dependency and the later onset of kidney disease. Orla was selected as the VHI Women’s Mini-Marathon representative for Co. Carlow.  Orla’s Just Giving online fundraising platform is https:// orla-canning-1715197275459

Diagnosed with diabetes at the age of 12, up until her transplant Orla underwent daily insulin injections for nearly two decades. Her health took a further downturn in her mid-twenties soon after the unexpected death of her father John Canning, she was diagnosed with chronic kidney disease leading to further health setbacks and extreme fatigue due to declining kidney function.

In 2019, Orla was placed on the transplant waiting list, enduring a three-year wait before receiving her lifechanging transplant in late Summer 2022.

“The transplant has been nothing short of miraculous,” Orla said. “I’ve got my life and future back, all because someone made the selfless decision to donate. I am unbelievably grateful for that gift from a stranger.”

Before the transplant, Orla struggled with daily activities, often only managing to go to work and then straight to bed due to exhaustion. Now, she is embracing life to the fullest and is eagerly anticipating her wedding in June 2025, when she marries  Alan Beaton from Bagenalstown, Carlow whom she met nine years ago. She credits Alan for standing by her throughout her health challenges and who despite her ailing health became her fiancé a month before she was called for her transplant. Orla’s renewed

vitality post-transplant has also reignited her passion for travel and sports, activities she had to give up due to her illness.

Reflecting on her journey, Orla recalls the challenges of being diagnosed with diabetes at such a young age, missing a lot of school, and having to give up sports and lots of fun activities with her friends. Despite these obstacles, she managed to finish school, attend university at DCU, and reassure her devoted mother that she could independently take responsibility for her health. These achievements boosted her confidence and self belief.

“The physical transformation of receiving a double transplant is truly life changing but I found the emotional process overwhelming with thoughts for my donor and their grieving family.  I have found invaluable support through the Irish Kidney Association’s free counselling services. The charity’s support through my kidney disease diagnosis and journey pre and posttransplant surgery is immeasurable. They are a constant source of information, help, support ad guidance for families living with kidney disease while also raising awareness about the importance of organ donation.”

To give back, Orla and her six friends took part in the

mini-marathon including fellow Carlow friends including Laura Hyland, from Brownshill, Anne Williamson, from Ballon,  Clare Thomson, Carlow town,  Niamh Croke, Old Leighlin, Carlow, as well as Carlow native Eamie

Bolgerm  who is now living in Ballyburn, Co Kildare, and Anne Marie Ramsbottom from Ballyadams, who attended school in Carlow and is married to farmer Sean Ramsbottom and living in Timahoe Co Laois.

Orla said: “In the later stages of my kidney failure, even a simple walk wasn’t possible. I’ll never forget hitting the milestone of walking 2,000 steps eight weeks post-transplant. To think I (was) doing 10K in

the mini marathon is almost unimaginable, but I am really looking forward to it and having my friends there to support me.

“I’d like to thank all the medical and nursing staff in St Vincent’s Hospital and Beaumont Hospital that looked after me, my consultants including Beaumont nephrologist Dr Denton, transplant surgeon Tom Gallagher at St Vincent’s Hospital and the transplant coordinators there including Caroline, Maura and Suzy.

Along with my wonderful fiancé Alan,  I’d also like to acknowledge the unstinting loving care of my mother Elizabeth and my sister Lydia who flew home with her partner Antonio when I was called for my transplant operation to be at my bedside for two weeks and help mind my dog Alfie. My employers EBS Carlow have been very supportive also. But most of all I’d like to thank my donor!

“By raising funds for the Irish Kidney Association, I hope to increase awareness about the vital work they do in supporting patients and their families and the importance of organ donation.”

In gratitude to all the ladies taking part to support the work of the Irish Kidney Association, they were gifted a bright yellow IKA branded t-shirt which they proudly wore along the 10km route.

News 14 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024
Showing strength: Orla Canning from Carlow town who underwent a simultaneous kidney and pancreas transplant last year with her friend AnneMarie Ramsbottom, from Ballyadams, Carlow and now living in Timahoe, Co Laois PHOTOS: Arthur Carron Showing support: Kilkenny ladies taking part in the VHI Women’s Mni Marathon , Sharon Gleeson, Louise Ronan, Assumpta O’Brien , Nora Gleeson and sisters Katie Ronan (16) all from Kilmanagh, Kilkenny
15 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024 Advertisement


Gender pension gap needs to be addressed Your Money & You

New research has revealed that women in Ireland must work an additional eight years to accumulate the same pension pot as their male counterparts. The 2024 Gender Pension Gap Report from Irish Life highlights a significant 36% gap.

The report identifies two primary factors contributing to this disparity: salary differences and time out of the workforce. On average, women’s salaries are 22% less than men’s, and they spend six years less in paid employment, primarily due to maternity leave and family responsibilities. This gap is wider in Ireland than the European average of 4.5 years, according to Eurostat.

These factors have led to substantial differences in accumulated pension funds, despite men and women starting their pensions at the same age and contributing similar percentages of their salaries. This indicates that

saving habits do not contribute to the gender pension gap.

Shane O’Farrell, Director of Employer Solutions at Irish Life, emphasises the lesser known yet critical issue of the gender pension gap. “While the gender pay gap gets plenty

of attention worldwide, the gender pension gap is not as well understood. This is despite the gender pension gap being much larger and having a significant longterm impact.

“The answer simply cannot be women continuing to work for eight more years

while the men in their workplace retire,” he says.

The research analysed data from more than 130,000 Irish Life pension plan holders calling for collaborative efforts from government, pension providers, and employers to address this gap.

They recommend several measures to bridge the gap.

The Government should implement specific tax measures to support those on unpaid leave. For instance, increasing tax-efficient contributions for those whose pensions have paused due to maternity, parental, or adoption leave could make a significant difference.

Furthermore, the government could allow for tax-efficient pension contributions to a partner’s fund during their leave. This would ensure continuous growth of the pension pot even when one partner is temporarily out of the workforce.

Lower the auto-enrolment salary starting point to €17,600 to include all income levels. Ensure workers with multiple employments are automatically included.

Allow non-earners to contribute to a level that will allow them to receive the State top-up as a tax

credit and part-time workers who do not meet the salary threshold should have the option to opt-in and receive employer contributions. But it’s not all unwelcome news as the data from the past three years shows a positive trend, with salaries growing at similar rates for both genders suggesting a gradual shift towards a more balanced workplace. And with the government working on the roll out of the auto-enrolment programme, it will provide a much-needed boost as only 47% of all workers currently have a private pension. While the gender pay gap often makes headlines, the gender pension gap remains a critical issue that needs to be addressed and with appropriate measures we can hope to see a future where women and men retire on an equal financial footing. 086 8362622

16 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024
17 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024 Advertisement

Science & Wellbeing

Is there a definitive cure for a hangover? Possibly, according to the latest scientific thought. When ingested, a novel hydrogel prevents alcohol from entering the blood and stops the compound acetaldehyde from accumulating.

In experiments conducted on mice, animals that drank alcohol and were also fed the hydrogel had much lower blood alcohol levels than mice that only drank alcohol. The mice given the hydrogel were also spared from liver damage. A team of scientists has created the hydrogel that breaks down alcohol in the stomach and intestines. When ingested, it prevents alcohol from entering the blood and stops the compound acetaldehyde from accumulating. A toxic byproduct of alcohol degradation, acetaldehyde is linked to liver cirrhosis and cancer. The hydrogel’s net result is to lessen the harms of alcohol, including the dreaded hangover. So, is this the hangover remedy we’ve been waiting for?

Companies, consumers, and scientists have sought one for years, with limited success. Although many supplements are claimed to prevent or alleviate the headache, nausea, fatigue, and other uncomfortable symptoms that can accompany heavy drinking, none are backed by convincing evidence.

The novel hydrogel appears to be different. Researchers, primarily based out of Zürich, crafted it from whey protein, a common supplement and food ingredient derived from milk. They also added iron atoms, sugar molecules, and gold nanoparticles to the gel. Together, these additives produce reactions that convert alcohol into innocuous acetic acid within the gastrointestinal tract.

So, the gel doesn’t only cure a hangover — it also limits alcohol intoxication itself.

“Alcohol abuse claims millions of lives each year...


Is this a cure for the hangover?

Normally, alcohol enters the gastrointestinal tract and then seeps into the bloodstream, where it exerts its intoxicating influence. Alcohol eventually travels to the liver and is broken down to noxious acetaldehyde and then to harmless acetic acid.

In experiments recently detailed in the journal Na-

If the Covid-19 vaccines were the most significant approvals of the 2020s so far, GLP-1 agonists to treat obesity are a strong runner up.

Though these drugs have been used to treat type 2 diabetes for nearly two decades, it wasn’t until 2021 that America’s FDA approved one of them — Novo Nordisk’s Wegovy (semaglutide) — as a treatment for obesity. Clinical trials showed that people lost 10-20% of their body weight.

This was huge. An estimated 42% of adults in the West are classified as obese, which puts them at increased risk of many serious health issues, including heart disease and some cancers, and death. The standard prescriptions prior to this — diet changes and exercise — are notoriously hard for many people to implement and stick to.

chronically binge drank suffered liver damage, weight loss, and gut problems. Mice that binged on booze and consumed the gel were almost entirely spared from these issues. Preventing the buildup of acetaldehyde appeared to be key to preventing organ damage.

Crucially, throughout the tests, mice given the gel showed few to no signs of gastrointestinal distress or any other side effects.

So when will this exciting hangover remedy be tested in humans?

“We hope and plan to move to clinical studies as soon as possible,” Professor Raffaele Mezzenga, a lead author on the study, told Big Think. “The exact timing is not clear yet and will depend on a number of factors, including ethical clearance and financial support of clinical trials.”

Mezzenga and his co-authors are confident these trials will demonstrate similar effectiveness in humans. They’ve already applied to patent the hydrogel. When commercially available, Mezzenga envisions that the gel will likely be consumed from a tube as an edible paste.

“It could be used for example in a recreational context before starting drinking to diminish the effect of alcohol socially (for example, allowing driving back home), or to reduce the side effects of hangovers,” he said.

But Mezzenga thinks the real benefits of the gel will be in therapeutic settings — perhaps in rehabilitation facilities to help wean patients off chronic alcohol use or in hospitals to help heavily inebriated individuals sober up.

alcohol levels was apparent in the animals’ behaviour.

An hour after the alcohol binge, blood alcohol concentrations in the mice fed the hydrogel were 40% lower than in control mice. After five hours, the difference was 56%. The difference in blood

ture Nanotechnology, the researchers fed mice control liquids or a liquid containing the hydrogel. Twenty minutes later, they dosed the rodents with large amounts of alcohol. Over the next five hours, the scientists monitored the animals’ behaviour and collected blood, stool, and tissue samples.

GLP-1 agonists make it easier to lose weight by mimicking a hormone our bodies release naturally about 15 minutes after we start eating — this reduces our appetite and triggers the release of insulin, which helps take sugar out of our blood and convert it into energy.

In addition to helping people shed pounds, some

Breakthrough in tackling obesity

GLP-1 agonists also have a proven ability to reduce weight-related health issues, such as heart attacks and deaths from cardiovascular disease. In clinical trials, people on the drugs ended up with lower blood pressure, blood sugar, and cholesterol,

and some studies suggest the meds could treat fatty liver disease, too.

But evidence is mounting that they could treat other health issues — including ones that aren’t obviously related to weight. Researchers are now taking a closer

Mice given the hydrogel easily bested their counterparts at navigating mazes.

The hydrogel also prevented the animals from alcoholrelated health problems. In additional tests, mice that

look at these other potential indications for GLP-1 agonists. Here’s what they’re finding out.

Parkinson’s is a neurodegenerative disorder caused by the death of specific neurons in the brain. This causes problems with movement, mental and behavioural changes, and often premature death. While existing treatments can help control symptoms, none can stop the disease from progressing.

For a recent phase 2 trial, French researchers gave 156 people in the early stages of Parkinson’s a GLP-1 agonist (lixisenatide) or placebo every day for 1 year. Compared to at the start of the trial, the motor symptoms of people in the placebo group were slightly worse by the end of the year, while the treatment group’s motor symptoms remained essentially the same. It’s not clear why this is happening — it may have something to do with the

“We believe this can and should also be used for people affected by chronic diseases related to alcohol abuse,” he told Big Think.

Alcohol abuse claims millions of lives each year. This novel gel could greatly reduce its harm.

known but not well-understood connection between Parkinson’s and diabetes. This was a fairly small study and a lot of questions remain to be answered, including whether GLP-1 agonists could help people with more advanced Parkinson’s, halt the progression of Parkinson’s motor symptoms over a longer period, or prevent other types of symptoms, such as ones related to cognition, from worsening.

Still, with up to one million Americans affected by Parkinson’s, these results are highly encouraging, and the results of a larger phase 3 trial testing another GLP1 agonist (exenatide) as a Parkinson’s treatment are expected in 2024.

Meanwhile some people taking GLP-1 agonists for weight loss or diabetes have reported an unexpected, but often welcome side effect: decreased cravings for drugs, alcohol, and tobacco.

18 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024

For many, the UK’s food offering doesn’t have the best reputation. They’re often accused of over-boiling their vegetables, and under seasoning dishes – with fish and chips their most famous delicacy and hard to beat.

But, despite what the world might think, those in the know acknowledge Britain has a vibrant foodie scene, with diverse markets, experimental new launches and world-class fine dining.

In fact, there are nine three Michelin-star restaurants, 27 two Michelin-star restaurants and 170 one Michelin-star restaurants in the UK.

And now, a UK destination has been recognised in Time Out’s list of the best cities for food in the world.

But sorry Londoners, it wasn’t the capital that made the cut, but rather it was Liverpool that came in at a very respectable 11th place.

“Liverpool is perhaps better known for its nightlife than its food, but a clutch of brand- new foodie ventures have earned the city a newfound rep for its dining scene,” wrote Liverpoolbased Alice Porter, for Time Out.

“This is largely down to

Travel & Leisure

Oh Liverpool food, lovely Liverpool food...

talent: local chefs like Paul Durand, who opened Michelin-mentioned Manifest in 2022, and Sam Grainger who owns smallplates spot Belzan and Mexican taqueria Madre.”

And the must-eat dish if you’re making a trip? Scouse [pictured right], the meaty stew that gave locals their nickname. Traditionally made using tender meat (lamb or beef) and slow cooked vegetables, one of the best places to try the

famous dish is in Skaus itself. Elsewhere in Liverpool, be sure to head to The Baltic Market, the first venue to bring street food to the city when it opened in 2017. Liverpool-born and

It’s no secret Australia is home to a long list of pesky creatures and travellers are frequently warned, often to an excessive degree, of how fearsome the wildlife is here. But one Irish woman says was never told about the worst of it, with her biggest nuisance not once mentioned ahead of her migration to Western Australia. In footage shared online as a warning to others, the woman can be seen standing in hi-vis work gear

attempting to talk to the camera but stopping every few words to swat or blow away the swarm of flies landing on her face.

“I was well warned about sharks, I was well warned about spiders, I was well warned about crocodiles,” the Irish woman said. “But nobody told me the flies take drugs, steroids, I don’t know some kind of narcotic substance [here]... send help,” she complained.

While most Aussies understand the plight, it’s

an annoyance that is only going to get worse thanks to climate change, according to entomologists.

The Irish woman was stunned by the sheer number of flies she’s contended with since moving to Western Australia. Recently, the weather has created ‘perfect storm’ for flies.

A spell of warm weather in the state, which is set to continue well into winter, has allowed fly populations to flourish for much longer

bred travel writer, Katie Rosseinsky, recently recommended her favourite spots to Metro. “You’ll still find an array of Merseyside’s best independent traders [at The Baltic Market].

“Hafla Hafla’s halloumi fries are Baltic legend (if you like the look of what they do, you’ll find an extended menu at their restaurant on Lark Lane), while La Bistroteca, a new venture from Maray’s former head

chef Livia Alarcon, has just joined the line-up.

“For a caffeine hit, head up Bold Street. The always buzzing Bold Street Coffee serves up seriously generous iced lattes and prides itself on its filled toasted brioche buns, while Leaf is practically a Merseyside institution.

“This laidback, catch- all venue boasts an incredible tea list and holds open mic nights, life drawing and offline singles events from

Bored of Dating Apps.” And the North West city was in some good company in the new ranking. Topping the list was Naples, the home of the pizza, followed by Johannesburg, which was lauded for its South African delicacies, including owetan kota sandwich, bunny chow and mala mogodu. Third place went to Limain Peru, which is home to Central, the world’s best restaurant.

those Aussie pests

than usual. And with more flies comes an increased rate in reproduction and the population continues to grow.

“It’s been warmer in the state in recent months which encourages fly activity to increase,” entomologist Bryan Lessard told Yahoo News. “There’s been more rain this season as well and that triggers the fly to hatch from the cocoon, so it’s kind of the perfect storm of heat and wet weather to trigger the abundance.”

Lessard explained the rise in global temperatures will undoubtedly impact fly populations too, warning residents all across Australia to ready themselves, saying the relentless treatment the Irish woman experienced could possibly become the new norm in years to come.

Aussies often have to contend with pesky flies throughout the warmer months.

And these flies often target ‘eyes, nose, ears, mouth’.

A gripe people often have

about flies is they seem to target specific parts of the face, with the Irish woman mentioning this in her viral complaint.

“They go directly to your eyes, or your nose, or your ears, or your mouth,” she said. Lessard confirmed this is typically the case – and the flies do it for good reason.

“It’s so hot flies are looking for something to quench their thirst and unfortunately our tears, sweat and saliva are quite hydrating.”

19 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024
Irish expat’s horror about
1. Naples 2. Johannesberg 3. Lima 4. HoChiMinhCity 5. Beijing 6. Bangkok 7. Kuala Lumpar 8. Mumbai 9. Dubai 10. Portland 11. Liverpool 12. Medellín 13. Seville 14. Porto 15. Marrakech 16. Lyon 17. Sydney 18. Montreal 19. Osaka 20. Copenhagen Source: Time Out The world’s best cities for food



Gerry Moran

Coincidences? It so happenstance ...

I love a coincidence. I think we all do. Something strange, almost magical, or mystical about them. A few weeks back I was looking at an old school photograph wondering whatever happened to a particular individual with whom I was quite friendly and hadn’t seen in maybe 50 years.

Lo and behold I bumped into that person on the High Street some days later. He was home from Australia for a wedding.

Strange? Unusual? Yes. But nothing amazing. In the meantime I offer you a selection of the world’s most renowned coincidences.

In 1950, Life magazine reported that 15 people narrowly missed disaster by an intricate stroke of luck. The 15, members of a church choir in Beatrice, Nebraska, were to meet at 7.15pm for practice. For various reasons each member of the choir was delayed – one had car trouble,

another was catching the end of a radio show while another was calming a sick child. Whatever the reason, they were all lucky to be late as the church was destroyed in an explosion at 7.25pm!

In 1983 a woman told British Rail authorities about a disturbing vision she had of a fatal train crash involving an engine with the registration numbers 47 216. Two years later, a train had a fatal accident, very similar to the one the woman had described. The engine number, however, was 47 299.Later it transpired that the number had been changed by nervous British Rail officials. The original number of the crashed train was – 47 216 !

A woman in Kissimmee, Florida could be forgiven for being just a little confused as to what her husband actually looks like. In August 1995, she married her boyfriend Ronald Legendre. The best man, who

wasn’t related to the bride, was also named Ronald Legendre. And, as if that wasn’t enough, the ceremony was performed by someone who wasn’t connected to either man – Judge Ronald Legendre! On three separate occasions – in 1664, 1785 and 1860 –there were shipwrecks where only one person survived the accident. Each time that person’s name was Hugh Williams.

Nicholas Stephen Waddle was born in Beloit Memorial Hospital, Wisconsin at 9.09am. on the ninth day of the ninth month in 1999. He weighed nine pounds, nine ounces.

During their preparations to invade Normandy during the Second World War, the Allied military commanders devised several secret code words. Among them were Utah, Neptune, Omaha, Mulberry and Overlord. Before the invasion could begin, however,

all of these words appeared in a crossword puzzle in the London Daily Telegraph. After interrogating the puzzle’s author, an English school teacher, authorities became convinced that it was sheer, inexplicable coincidence.

Of the 43 Presidents of the

“Strange? Unusual? Yes. But nothing amazing...

United States, four have been assassinated. One man was on the scene for three of those assassinations. Robert Todd Lincoln, son of Abraham Lincoln, was summoned to his father’s side after he was mortally wounded by John Wilkes Booth in Ford’s Theatre in 1865.

In 1881 as Secretary of War under President Garfield, Lincoln went to Union Station in Washington to inform the president that he could not travel with him due to work overload. By the time Lincoln arrived Garfield had been shot by Charles Guiteau.

Twenty years later in 1901, Lincoln accepted an invitation from President William McKinley to join him at the Pan-American Exposition in Buffalo, New York.

When Lincoln arrived he noticed a large crowd had gathered around – McKinley had just been mortally

wounded by Leon Czolgosz. One of the lesser-known figures of the American Civil war was Wilmer McLean, a Virginia farmer who had no interest whatsoever in politics. In 1861, however, the first full-scale battle of the Civil War (The Battle of Bull Run) took place on his farm when Confederate and Union forces confronted each other. Thirteen months later it happened again and the second Battle of Bull Run destroyed McLean’s farm. He had enough. He upped and moved 200 miles away from the war. Three years later in a weird twist of fate two men confronted each other in McLean’s kitchen. The two men talked and signed a document on McLean’s table.

Wilmer McLean had moved to a little village called Appomattox Court House where Robert E. Lee and Ulysses S. Grant negotiated the end of the American Civil War!

20 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024

Local theatre group KATS return to their spiritual home, John Cleeres, next week, Thursday the 13th and Friday the 14th of June at 7.30pm, with Peter Quilter’s brilliant quartet of plays, Duets. The titles of the plays are: Blind Date, Secretarial Skills, The Holiday and Bride to Be. All four contain but two characters; a duet. Each play explores the complexities of modern love and relationships through humour and wit. A night of comedy you will not want to miss!

KATS is a great place to start if you're interested in getting involved with theatre or performance and are a bit new to being on stage. This year’s production of Duets attests to that very fact. With a cast of eight people, there are several who are new to theatre in Kilkenny, and some who haven’t treaded the boards in a very long time. Not only that, but this applies to the directors as well, with two debuting in their directorial roles; Edwina Cummins for Blind Date, Megan Kelly and Michael Sommers for Secretarial Skills. Niall O’Riordan, a regular director across the board, is directing The Holiday, and returning to the fold is Tim Slight; after taking a few years sabbatical he directs Bride to Be.

In her directorial debut, Edwina is taking the reins for the play, Blind Date. This play is funny and awkward from the start. Watching Wendy and Jonathon navigate the cringe-worthy waters of first impressions and living up to expectations, will take you on trip down memor y lane to every bad first date you’ve ever had.

Deciding to direct this duet was a no-brainer for Edwina. “I’ve always been interested in the possibility of directing something, but never felt the time or the project was right. When I joined KATS, it became clear to me that this could be the perfect environment to cross another achievement off my theatrecentred bucket list. KATS was very supportive in this regard, giving me time and guidance to decide when and what I would like my first piece to be. When I was reading Duets, I knew straight away I wanted to work on Blind Date. I didn’t even finish reading the others.

The characters Wendy and Jonathon, played by Marie Sheehan and Eoin Nangle Ryan respectively, just jumped out at me. They are both awkward but lovable. They both know what they are looking for but are completely clueless as how to obtain it, and resort to posting ads in a magazine. I laughed the entire way through the play. It really is a lovely piece that leaves you wondering if honestly, really is the best policy, are we ever too old to find love, and do men really love cheese? I’m so excited to bring this piece to life for Kilkenny audiences


and so grateful to KATS for giving me the platform.” Will our hapless star-crossed lovers finally find their kindred spirits or will they leave their first date without dessert?

You’ll have to stop by Cleere’s on June 13th and 14th to find out.

ATS regular Tim Slight (Mirror Mirror, Elephant Man, Clockwork Orange, Shadow of a Gunman), is back in the directorial saddle with Bride to Be which tells the tale of two siblings having a very different experience on a wedding day. The bride Angela, played by Catriona Walsh, hoping, yet desperately seeking assurance that she is doing the right thing, is anxious that this marriage doesn't go the way of her other two. Meanwhile her younger brother Toby, played bt Ben Nunan is a relationship cynic who has more than a fondness for a malt whisky.

On reading the play Tim knew it was a winner "Delia Lowery, KATS chairperson, passed me the script and, typical of me I forgot about it. Then around midnight on a Friday night, not at my mentally sharpest, I fired up my laptop and thought I would have a quick look. I was instantly hooked by the banter between them, but also the honesty of the situation and through the masks; Toby's particularly, there is real sibling love and affection there.” It is great to be back involved with KATS again, they’re a great group.

Duets is on Thursday June 13-Friday 14th at Cleeres pub Parliament Street Kilkenny tickets €15.

21 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024 Kilkenny Amateur Theatre Society
Edwina Cummins Tim Slight

Palestine: a fighting chance for a fairer tomorrow The Last Word

Was I so surprised when I saw Bibi on the box giving out legions about the International Criminal Court’s decision to issue arrest warrants for both himself and the head of Hamas and a few others. The Irish Times described what he said as “he referred to the ICC prosecutor’s move as a new kind of anti-semitism”.

Meanwhile, Jo-Ann Mort writing in the Guardian said: “Resorting to calling the ruling ‘anti-semitic’, as some Israeli officials – including Netanyahu –have, won’t cut it.”

But we had already said that here in The Kilkenny Observer. We said that we all needed to talk about Israel, but we were afraid to do so for fear of being labelled anti-semetic.

The Palestinian struggle for labour rights in Israel isn’t a minor issue; it’s a major one that’s been brewing for ages.

Palestinian workers face many issues, from wages to

the role of NGOs and trade unions, all within a context that’s complex.

Palestinians are often stuck in jobs with little to no job security, making it tough to plan for anything beyond the next pay packet. And as for getting a fair crack at work opportunities? Forget about it.

The Non Governmental Organisations (NGO) are the unsung heroes in this saga. These groups are out there, boots on the ground, giving help to Palestinian workers navigate the maze of legalities in Israel. They’re not just about the paperwork; they’re strong advocates, shouting from the rooftops and getting the word out on the global stage about the rough deal these workers are getting.

In Israel, prominent trade unions like Histadrut, founded in 1920, champion the rights of workers, including Palestinians, ensuring they receive legal protec

tions akin to Israeli workers, such as minimum wage and health insurance. The Maan Workers Association focuses on enhancing conditions for Palestinian labourers in construction and agriculture. Despite chal

lenges, including movement restrictions and settlement issues, these organisations are dedicated to improving work conditions and fostering equality for all regional workers.

When Israeli and Pales

tinian workers join hands, showing the world what solidarity looks like, it’s a breath of fresh air, seeing them stand shoulder to shoulder. These joint efforts are more than just a show; they’re a beacon of hope, lighting the

way towards a fairer work environment for all. What could the government be doing to help out the Palestinian workers? There’s a fair bit they could be doing, like tweaking policies to make sure labour laws are not just something you’d find perchance. They could be enforcing these laws properly, making sure everyone’s getting a square deal. And little international conversation wouldn’t go amiss to ensure all workers are treated fairly, no matter where they’re from.

The struggle for fair rights for Palestinian workers in Israel is a tough battle, but it’s not one they’re walking down alone. With a bit of elbow grease from everyone involved – governments, international bodies, and the workers themselves – there’s a chance for a fairer tomorrow. It’s the collective push that’ll make all the difference in the end.

The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024
23 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024 Advertisement Advertisement

Fitzpatrick welcomes huge allocation for Castlecomer

Local Castlecomer Cllr Pat Fitzpatrick has expressed his delight at the recent allocation of €500,000 from the Outdoor Recreation Projects Fund towards the development of a bike trail at Castlecomer Discovery Park. This significant investment is expected to enhance the park's recreational offerings, attract more visitors, and support local tourism. The new bike trail will provide both residents and tourists with additional outdoor activity options, contributing to the community's overall well-being and economic growth Cllr Fitzpatrick concluded.

Climate Change

– are we all playing our part?


‘Do you think we should cut it in half?’

News 24 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024

Honouring the great James Nowlan…

Over the past few weeks; I’ve recounted the stories of County Kilkenny heroes of the War of Independence. Since last week’s article, I accompanied the Kilkenny Heritage Walkers to Nowlan Park to mark the hundredth anniversary of the death of a great sportsman and patriot, James Nowlan, after whom the mighty venue is named. He was born in Monasterevin in 1862. His father was a cooper by profession and a member of the embryonic Irish Republican Brotherhood (IRB). James followed in his father’s footsteps and trained as a cooper in O’Sullivan’s Brewery. He also inherited his father’s Republican sentiments. The story of Ireland’s long struggle for freedom moved him deeply. He joined the Gaelic League and became politically involved. He was a founder member of St Patrick’s Brass and Reed Band, whose nationalistic ethos chimed with his own vision of a Free Ireland.

Elected an alderman of Kilkenny Corporation, he used the position from day

one to assist the fledgling GAA which had been formed fourteen years earlier to promote our native sports and culture.

In 1900, he was elected the first chairman of the GAA’s Leinster Council and at the 1901 GAA Congress he was appointed national president of the Association. His twenty-year term made him the longest serving holder of

that post, and throughout his tenure he sought to wed the Association to the cause of Republicanism.

Nowlan joined Sinn Fein shortly after its formation in 1905, a fateful decision that meant a life of sacrifice… keeping one step ahead of the oppressor. He was among the hundreds of suspected rebels arrested in a countryside swoop by the British follow-

ing the 1916 Rising.

Interned at a camp in Wales, he was released in August and resumed both his Republican activities and involvement with the GAA. He was arrested again in 1919 when the Brit-

ish found him in possession of a revolver and ammunition. His plea that he only wanted the gun to “guard GAA gate money” (the butt of many a fireside yarn in later years) failed to impress his captors and he received a one-month prison term.

Throughout the War of Independence he fearlessly made known his support for the resistance, despite the unwelcome attention this drew from the authorities.

At the 1921 Congress he was appointed Honorary GAA Life President of the Association, the only recipient of that position…a fitting tribute to a true local hero.

When he died in 1924, however, his grave at Glasnevin cemetery carried no recognition of a life devoted to his country’s independence and its unique sporting culture. That oversight was addressed in 2013 when the GAA erected a Celtic cross at his grave.

In 2009, the Sunday Tribune listed him as one of the 125 Most Influential People in GAA History But the greatest posthumous honour bestowed on James Nowlan was the building of the park in Kilkenny to cater for Gaelic games. Nowlan Park today has capacity for around 24,000 spectators.

Last Saturday, the Kilkenny Heritage Walkers arrived at Nowlan Park to pay tribute to him, kindly facilitated by park chairman PJ Kenny. Tom Kennedy spoke of the man and his turbulent times, sprinkling his witty and erudite presentation with anecdotes and a wealth of historical references.

Ailbhe Fitzgerald offered further insights, drawing on her passion for all things Irish, and she delivered a part of her talk in the native tongue, as befitting the man and his achievements. Historian Paddy Neary delved into the mists of time, highlighting the remarkable legacy that James Nowlan bequeathed, not just to Kilkenny, but to Ireland. Later that day an All Ireland Under 20 Final was held in Nowlan Park to mark his 100th anniversary. I’d like to think that he heard some of the cheers that rose to Heaven as the two sides played the game he loved… at a venue bearing his name.

25 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024
Nowlan Park James Nowlan shakes hands with Michael Collins before the 1921 Leinster hurling final James Nowlan

Congo Veterans

Honouring, caring and remembering as Congo veterans meet

In 2023 it was decided by the National Executive of IUNVA that there would be planned events during the months of May to June 2024 to coincide with the 60th anniversary of the ending of the Congo mission 196064, during which time twelve different units from the Defence Forces deployed. A total of twenty-six Irish soldiers paid the ultimate sacrifice during the deployments.

It was decided at a post meeting that Post 8 Kilkenny would seek permission from the Barrack Commander of the 3rd Infantry Battalion to hold a ceremony during the month of May 2024. The response was quick and positive, so the planning commenced in early March. It was decided to invite Posts from neighbouring counties to participate in what would now be called a regional event. Post 3 Wexford and Post 29 Carlow agreed to be part of the parade.

The committee for the parade met several times members included, Willie Dunne (catering), Anthony Coy (band), Fran O’Neill (outdoor setup), Ollie Cullen (Certificates), Ger Barry (seating), Pat Phelan (Congo Cross). It is testament to all the hard-working committee members that the event was meticulous in its planning , well attended and received by all those who attended. The point of contact with Post 3 was Willie Gilbert and Post 29 was John Kelly and close liaison was maintained with them throughout the planning process.

In all, twenty-seven veterans were scheduled to receive their certificates of appreciation. Unfortunately, Congo veteran Jim Redmond from Wexford went to his eternal reward just two weeks before the parade. There were twelve from Kilkenny, six from Wexford and eight from Carlow. The veterans on parade were William Bolger, Charles Callinan, Patrick Coalman, George Coady, Dermot Culleton, Mick Darby, Dominic Doyle, Joe Doyle, John Dreelan, James Dwyer, Mi-

chael Guidrea, Johnny Hardy, John Hennessy, Patrick Horahan, Noel Hoyne, Hugh Kelly, Sean Kennedy, Henry Lawlor, Kevin McGarry, Joseph McGrath, Richard O’Connor, John O’Shea, Thomas Ryan, Daniel Sullivan, Kieran Walsh and Richard Wickham.

The day commenced with a display of vintage and modern military equipment and vehicles in the vicinity of the Gymnasium.

The parade commenced when Michael Furlong handed over to Lt Col Robert Kearney. The MC Larry Scallan then outlined the days events and then read out the Congo roll of honour. Major General (Retired) Kieran Brennan praised the veterans on parade for their loyalty, professionalism and their steadfastness throughout what was a pathfinder mission for all future Defence Forces deployments.

During the presentation of certificates each Congo Veteran had his number, name and missions called out before he was awarded his certificate. Lt Col Kearney and Kieran Brennan awarded the certs.

On conclusion of the presentation ceremony there was a standing ovation for the men on parade , complemented by an extended round of applause.

Messages from an Tánaiste Michael Martin, Minister for Defence and Chief of Staff Lt General Sean

Clancy were read.

There was a break in the ceremony while all in attendance moved to the Barracks memorial for the Congo Cross unveiling. The Pipe band played suitable musical honours on the route to the garden.

The memorial garden ceremony commenced with IUNVA Chairman Derek Judge and Secretary John (Stoney) Burke unveiling the Congo Cross which had been erected by post eight members Pat Phelan and Joe Darcy with help from Michael

Furlong, Billy Dunne and members of the post.

Derek gave a short address outlining the history of the erecting of the original cross in Niemba in 1961.

He also commended the veterans on parade and how proud the association is to be to make events such as this happen.

A wreath laying ceremony saw mayor of Kilkenny Joe Malone laying the first wreath, followed by post three, post 29, Mr Sean Power (son of Cpl John Power who died in

1962 36th Bn)) President of James Stephens branch of the ONE Comdt’ retired Bobby Kearney.

The parade was then called to attention and saluted while the Last Post, Reville and the National Anthem were rendered by the Buglers and Pipe band.

All in attendance were then invited to the dining complex to enjoy some finger food and tea and coffee.

The final acts of the Afternoon were a tree planting ceremony where all Congo vets

26 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024
Paddy Horohan John ( Gus) Hennessy

were invited to assist in the planting of an apple tree close to the oratory. Mass was celebrated by Fr Jim Murphy and the NCO’s mess was open for some refreshments.

A spokesman for Post eight said it was an honour and a privilege to conduct this most important event for our veterans where old friendships were rekindled, and many stories of hardship, friendship and comradeship were re-

galed into the evening.

Speaking to The Kilkenny Observer Newspaper , Commandant ( retired) Larry Scallan thanked everyone for their great work in making the day so special.

Larry thanked Lt Col Kearney for making all the barrack facilities available to IUNVA, and to his staff for making the day run so smoothly .

“To all who assisted in any way, post eight would like to express

their deep appreciation on a day which is about honouring, caring and remembering”,concluded Mr Scallan.


There will be a Certificate of appreciation presented to families of Congo Veterans who have gone before us at an event during the Summer. Please send the details of any Congo veterans to

27 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024
Congo Veterans
Kevin McGarry Noel Hoyne Mayor Joe Malone and Paddy Horohan Mick Darby Richie O’Connor Patrick Ryan Michael Guidrea John Dreelan

Africa Day joy in Castle Park!



A diverse cross-section of Irish and other nationalities converged to celebrate Africa’s artistic and musical heritage,

and its spell-binding oral traditions. African cuisine beguiled as face-painting and visually stunning fashion displays vied for attention. Whirligig shape-shifting and scintillating drama pulled at the heartstrings.

As in Ireland, song in Africa is integral to all of life’s milestones…especially births, deaths, marriages, and political activity. Excitement mounted as Mada took the stage. Local election candidate Toluwani Akaehomen thrilled the crowd with her evocation of all that’s best and revered in her culture. She invited other performers to join her and then the fans volunteered.

The result was more electrifying than a rock concert. Waves of kinetic energy seldom experienced on the normally quiet grounds washed over the crowd.

The fast rotation and ripples of costumed dancers drew rapturous applause, and the drumming set up an incanta-

tory tempo that sent hearts racing. In Africa the drum plays a time-honoured role, its haunting rhythm expressing,

or resonating with, the mood of the people. In the past it served as a means of communication. The magic of the drums transferred well to Nore Side. Enchanted Kilkenny folk caught up in the exuberance of it all danced along… moved by the spirit of liberty sweeping parkland.

Ireland and Africa have an affinity also in their age-old love of story-telling. Like the Irish, Africans have always valued the importance of passing on the essence of a proud legacy through the generations.

The tales and soulful poetry that filled the Castle Park air on Saturday called to mind the Shanachai of Celtic fame. Just change the times and locations and it could have been the story of our own long history of struggle for survival and justice, and our interaction with an empire upon which the sun reputedly never set. But that same sun shone benevolently on Saturday, as lads and lassies in rival county jerseys, in Kilkenny for a hurling showdown, added their colours to the celebration… dancing, singing along, sampling exotic food, or exploring the Afri-Market- a break from an emotionallycharged build-up to the big game.

Africa Day was a blessing, and a sign that Kilkenny is both a welcoming city and the creative capital of Ireland…

28 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024 News
Kilkenny Castle Park was a dream venue for Africa Day with its vast rolling sward of emerald green. Thousands of locals mingled with ers and African friends as a balmy sun kissed a lavish outpouring of joy and talent. Toluwani Akaehomen was a big hit at the Adrica Day event in Kilkenny Performers take to the stage in Castle Park for Africa Day Brightness and joy at Africa Day in the Castle Park
29 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024 Advertisement

When a New York jury convict ed Donald Trump on all 34 federal charges in his ‘hush money’ case, there were no surprises when the former president told reporters he was a “very innocent man”, labelled the verdict a “disgrace” and claimed the trial had been “rigged”.

The Republican contender to take on President Biden on November 5 certainly sounded as delusional as ever but even looked so – and his body language decidedly edgy.

The first criminal trial of a former US president ended with the 77-year-old found guilty on all charges of falsifying business records to reimburse his lawyer, Michael Cohen, for a $130,000 (€120,000) payment to Stormy Daniels on the eve of the 2016 election, when her claim to have had sex with him could have proved politically fatal. Trump denied having sex with Daniels at a 2006 celebrity golf tournament.

It took the jury of 12 just 11 hours to reach their verdict. Sentencing will take place on July 11. In a strange decree, the identities of the jurors were kept secret – a rare practice more often seen in cases involving Mafia or drug cartels.

The Trump campaign nearly doubled its single-day fundraising record after a New York jury found Donald Trump guilty in his criminal hush money trial.

The Republican’s campaign said it raised $34.8 million from small-dollar donors in less than seven hours following the historic verdict.

Nearly 30% of those donors were brand new to the Trump donation site WinRed, senior campaign advisors Chris LaCivita and Susie Wiles said in a press release.

The advisors echoed Trump’s post-trial vow that the “real verdict” will come on November 5, when he is set to face President Biden in a rematch of their 2020 contest.

The conviction takes the US into uncharted waters but does not bar Trump from a White

Even if in prison, Trump could still be president

House run, even in the unlikely event that Judge Juan Merton sentences him to prison. The seven-week trial distracted Trump from his campaign; a likely appeal would delay things further. The verdict comes just weeks before the Republican National Convention in Milwaukee, where Trump is due to receive the party’s formal nomination.

After toying with the idea for weeks, Trump – who made his name as a brash real estate mogul and then a TV Host – opted not to testify.

He faces three other corruption cases across two states, in total 88 charges.

So, can Donald Trump run now that he is convicted? The simple answer is yes.

America’s Constitution sets very few eligibility require-

It’s good news

The ruling African National Congress (ANC) has been humbled in the country’s general election. South Africa is going through the biggest shift in its political landscape since the end of apartheid 30 years ago. The party has fallen below the 50% required for a parliamentary majority for the first time since the end of minority white rule in 1994. It must now share power for the first time.

And its political leaders will have to suffer the ignominy of scrambling to forge a coalition with their opponents.

This is the party, born out of Africa’s most famous lib-

ments for presidents. They must be at least 35 years old, be ‘natural born’ citizens and have lived in the US for at least 14 years. There are no limitations based on criminal record. While some states prohibit criminals from running for state and local office, these laws do not apply to federal office.

States could, in theory, have tried to keep Trump off the ballot by passing legislation requiring a clean criminal record, but this proved to be on legally shaky ground when the Supreme Court ruled in March that states could not keep him off their ballots under the 14th Amendment, which disqualifies people who “engaged in insurrection or rebellion” after taking an oath to support the Constitution.

Numerous lawsuits argued

that Trump’s actions before and on January 6, 2021, met this bar. In December, the Colorado Supreme Court found him ineligible, and Maine’s Secretary of State likewise. But the Supreme Court — led by a conservative super-majority, with three judges appointed by Trump himself — concluded that only Congress had the power to enforce the 14th Amendment against candidates for federal office.

Back in the 1920s socialist Eugene Debs ran for president while in prison, though managed less than 10 per cent of the vote.

Is Trump likely to be jailed? It’s hard to predict. Legal analysts on CNN and Sky News in recent weeks have noted that, while he could theoretically be given a lengthy sentence,

Trump could end up facing a far lighter penalty.

CNN chief legal analyst Laura Coates noted on the day of the verdict that “because the crimes involve nonviolent offences and Trump does not have a criminal record, the judge could consider jailing him for a period that is but a fraction of the maximum penalty”.

Another possibility is that the judge could forego prison and place Trump on probation with the possibility of jail looming if he fails to abide by conditions set by the judge.

Should he be jailed, America’s Secret Service would become the elephant in the room – or cell, rather. The unprecedented nature of imprisoning a former president would raise questions about how best to ensure

equal treatment under the law and security for a former president.

Were he to win in November but be in jail – he still faces 55 other charges – Trump as president could pardon himself, though legal experts differ on this. Meanwhile, running the country from prison would be bizarre, not to say impractical.

I don’t see him winning the White House now. It’s down to the handful of swing states. Then again, 76% of Republicans still say otherwise, while the man himself continues playing the victim card.

In short, don’t expect committed Donald Trump voters to suddenly waver because their candidate is now a convicted felon.

They just see it all as an abuse of the justice system...

that the ANC no longer hold sway

eration movement, that freed Black South Africans from white minority rule, avoided the country descending into civil war and, in Nelson Mandela, gave the country its first Black president.

The ANC evokes memories of Mandela emerging from prison with his clenched fist held aloft. Four years after his release, the 1994 election in which Black people cast their votes for the first time sealed the ANC’s triumph over a vile system of racial segregation.

But the reality is that South Africa’s latest election result is good for the country. It shows that its democracy

is giving citizens the ability to hold the government to account. Voters had plenty of options – a record 51 opposition parties were on the national ballot. That level of choice, combined with a proportional representation system, means South Africans will end up with a government that better reflects the will of voters than countries dominated by two parties with more arcane voting systems.

South Africa’s government has had a lot to answer for. Africa’s most industrialised economy has been run into the ground. One in three South Africans of working age are unemployed, rising to

nearly half – 45.5% – for those aged between 15 and 34.

Such high levels of joblessness help to explain why people born after the end of apartheid – the “born free” generation – have turned their back on the ANC. They drove this change.

Many feel economically disfranchised in a country ranked by the World Bank as one of the most unequal in the world. And, with no recollection of apartheid, they don’t feel the pull to vote for the ANC out of loyalty.

High unemployment was just one of a long list of grievances South Africans shared in the run-up to the election. Rolling electricity blackouts

caused by power rationing, known as “load shedding”, have frustrated people for years and strangled businesses.

Access to clean water has become harder for the poorest people and violent crime has become pervasive in some neighbourhoods.

A slew of scandals involving ANC figures highlighted the difference between the haves and have-nots. Jacob Zuma, the country’s president from 2009 to 2018, has been accused of overseeing systemic corruption, known as state capture, in which he allegedly allowed businessmen close to him to loot state resources and influ-

ence government policy. Even the current president, Cyril Ramaphosa, an ANC veteran and successful businessman who was part of the negotiation team that brokered the deal that ended apartheid, was nearly impeached over a scandal involving between $500,000 and $5m in cash that was stolen from his private game farm.

The corruption and economic rot that has set in are the product of South Africa having been a de facto oneparty state for the past 30 years. The lack of oversight allowed the worst elements of corruption to take hold within the party.

The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024
Global Report
31 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024 Advertisement

Food for Thought: Kilkenny residents being urged to reduce food waste and reap the rewards

On World Environment Day, June 5th, Kilkenny County Council's Environmental Section is urging residents to take action to reduce their food waste and recycle more effectively. Food waste is a significant issue in Kilkenny, with over 1,000 tonnes of edible food going to waste each year. This not only has environmental implications, but also has a significant impact on the community's resources and budget.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), food waste is the second largest contributor to municipal waste in Ireland, accounting for around 12% of the total waste stream. In Kilkenny, this translates to a significant amount of waste being sent to landfill sites, where it can take hundreds of years to decompose.

"Reducing food waste is a critical step in reducing our carbon footprint and protecting the environment," said Mags Whelan, Environmental Awareness Officer with Kilkenny County Council. "By taking simple steps such as planning our meals, using up leftovers, and composting food waste,

we can make a significant difference. We urge residents to join us in making a commitment to reduce their food waste and recycle more effectively."

To support residents in reducing their food waste, Kilkenny County Council is

providing the following tips:

* Plan your meals and make a shopping list to avoid buying too much food

* Use up leftovers and get creative with recipe ideas

* Compost food waste and turn it into nutrient-rich soil for your garden

* Store food properly to extend its shelf life

* Check your fridge and freezer regularly to ensure that food is not past its expiration date

In addition to these tips, Kilkenny County Council is also highlighting the

importance of recycling more effectively. Residents can make a difference by recycling correctly and ensuring that they are putting the right materials in the right bins.

"By recycling more effectively, we can reduce the amount of waste that ends up in landfill sites and conserve valuable resources," said Eamonn Morrissey, Executive Chemist, Environmental department of Kilkenny County Council.

"We encourage residents to take a few minutes each week to sort their recyclables and make sure they are putting them in the correct bins.

Every little bit counts!"

“The brown bin is now a crucial part of Kilkenny's waste management system, allowing households to divert food waste from landfill sites and turn it into nutrient-rich compost instead. This not only reduces the amount of waste sent to landfill, but also helps to conserve natural resources and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. By placing food waste, such as fruit and vegetable scraps, tea bags, and bread, into the brown bin, residents can help to reduce their

environmental impact and support a more sustainable future for Kilkenny.”

To mark World Environment Day, Kilkenny County Council will be hosting an online workshop on “Reducing Your Food Waste” with Aoife Munn on Thursday 7th of June at 7pm. You can register in advance for the workshop by emailing environment@kilkennycoco. ie Mags Whelan, EAO said “You can learn techniques from preserving to perfect storage to ensure you waste less, save more and reduce your impact on the planet. Shopping plans, food storage, Grow Your Own, and zero waste shops are all discussed in this lively online talk. We also look at how you can move your whole community towards reducing their food waste.”

For more information on how to reduce your food waste and recycle more effectively, please visit www. at-home/the-brown-bin/ or contact the Environmental Section of Kilkenny County Council on environment@ or call 0567794470.

32 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024

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At FT Energy, their mission is centred on conserving energy and maximising your financial savings. Their team comprises dedicated professionals specialising in electrical craftsmanship, with expertise in cutting-edge renewable technologies like Solar PV and Hydropower.

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33 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024

Kilkenny based RWE expands its portfolio in Ireland

RWE Renewables (RWE) has had its head office in Kilkenny since 2016 with ambitious growth targets of 2000 megawatts of onshore and offshore wind projects in development. RWE is actively seeking new opportunities to develop renewable energy projects and technologies across Ireland.

Clíona O’Sullivan, Head of Onshore Renewables

Development (Wind, Solar and Storage) Ireland said that “RWE in Ireland is expanding its portfolio to be a long-term energy partner for Ireland during our transition to carbon neutrality.”

The Irish Government's Climate Action Plan 2024 (CAP24) sets a roadmap to reduce our country’s carbon emissions by 51% by 2030, compared to 2018 levels

and reach net zero carbon emissions no later than 2050.

“Many of the changes that are required in CAP24 will also have positive economic and societal benefits, and a more sustainable economy for the long term,” Clíona continued.

Ireland’s national climate objective requires the transition to a climateresilient, biodiversity-rich,

environmentally sustainable, and climate-neutral economy. Clíona said that “to achieve these objectives, we must harness our massive renewable natural resources. CAP24 provides us with greater energy security, stable prices, more jobs, and regional development, particularly for rural communities.”

Electricity will play

an important role in the decarbonisation of other sectors through electrification, including transport, heating, and industry. Among the measures is to increase the proportion of renewable electricity to up to 80% by 2030. A target of 9 gigawatts (GW) of renewable energy from onshore wind, 8 GW from solar, and at least 5 GW of offshore wind energy has been set to be achieved by 2030.

“To get us to our targets we will need to double the installed capacity of onshore wind in Ireland from over 4,400MW to 9,000MW. The development of new onshore wind farms are crucial as we move away from our reliance on fossil fuels. Developing our own clean renewable energy in Ireland gives us a security of supply and frees us from the dependence on imported fossil fuels,” Clíona added.

While offshore wind will play a crucial part in these 2030 targets, onshore wind is still important to the decarbonisation of the electricity market

in Ireland. Ireland has enormous wind generation potential. Wind energy is a clean, non-polluting energy source which does not produce harmful emissions of greenhouse gases in its generation.

According to the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland, wind energy is currently the largest contributing resource of renewable energy in Ireland. It is both Ireland’s largest and cheapest renewable electricity resource. In 2023, wind provided over 85% of Ireland’s renewable electricity and 35% of our total electricity demand and saved Ireland a total of €1.3 billion (€918 million on gas imports and an extra €385 million on carbon credits to burn that gas).

“Renewable energy including onshore wind can help us achieve our climate action goals. Onshore wind development will also continue to provide investment and employment nationally, regionally and locally, and particularly to rural communities,” Clíona concluded.

34 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024
Cathal Hennessy Head of Onshore Renewables Development (Wind, Solar and Storage) UK & Ireland, Clíona O’Sullivan Head of Onshore Renewables Development (Wind, Solar and Storage) Ireland and Jonas Kampermann Flight Test Manager for the RWE Airborne Wind Test Site in Co Mayo Dromadda Beg Wind Farm

Building on the success of 2023, where 500 groups registered, 5,000 volunteers took part, and over 24 tonnes of rubbish were collected, "Team Up to Clean Up" is back for its second year, with a new focus on green schools nationwide!

The initiative, which aims to mobilise communities to come together and clean up their local areas, is now expanding to include green

"Team Up to Clean Up" kicks off its second year with a green schools focus!

schools across the county. This year's event will not only help keep our environment clean but also foster a sense of community, teamwork, and environmental responsibility among students.

Mags Whelan, Environmental Awareness and Education Officer stated “Last year's event was a huge success, and we're

excited to see even more people get involved this year. By partnering with green schools, we hope to inspire a new generation of environmental leaders and make a meaningful difference in our communities.”

Cathaoirleach of Kilkenny County Council, Cllr. Michael Doyle said: "We're thrilled to be launching the second year of 'Team Up to Clean Up', and we're particularly excited about the opportunity to work with green schools across the county. This initiative is all about empowering communities to take action locally and keep their neighbourhood’s litter free."

Mayor of Kilkenny, Cllr. Joe Malone, emphasised the importance of the initiative in combating littering and dumping in the City and County. "I would like to acknowledge the significant efforts of the Tidy Towns groups in Kilkenny City and County, who have been working tirelessly to keep our environment clean and tidy. 'Team Up to Clean Up' is a fantastic initiative that builds on their work and encourages even more people to get involved in keeping our community clean."

Chief Executive of Kilkenny County Council, Lar Power added: "We are delighted

to be supporting 'Team Up to Clean Up' once again this year. The initiative is a fantastic example of community-led action, and we believe it has the power to make a real difference in our communities. Once again, we are delighted to have the backing and support of our Sponsors TírLán/Glanbia, Dawn Meats, Panda, PRL and the John O’Shea Trust, on this initiative which demonstrates their commitment to promoting environmental responsibility and fostering community engagement.” The event will take place over 20th-22nd of September with registration open online from Monday 27th of May, 2024 for participating groups and schools. To register or learn more about "Team Up to Clean Up", please visit http:// or www.

Join us in making a difference in your community and inspiring the next generation of environmental leaders. Register now and let's "Team Up to Clean Up"!

35 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024
36 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024

White Twine and Old Suitcases

The Kilkenny Involvement Centre and Recovery College South East have produced a wonderful anthology of poetry and prose. ‘White Twine and old suitcases’ comprises of 128 pages and 60 authors and is complemented by some wonderful photos and artwork by TASK camera club. It is printed by Modern Printers. It is definitely recommended reading for all lovers of poetry. The Kilkenny Observer is happy to run the poems each week to promote creative writing and to highlight these wonderful centres. Available in all Kilkenny book shops. €10

Spring 2022

Strange light in the house this morning; white tears fall from the sky. The world is shrouded in grey, air filled with pale missiles, hurtling about, moving this way, then that, hitting the earth, dissolving. This won’t last.

Crows huddle, their feathers fluffed, watching me with hopeful eyes. I go outside clutching a basin of food, feet crunch, sink through a frozen crust. Moving away, I hear behind me the scramble for food; their black bodies shimmer like ghosts in the mottled haze. I see white flakes like ash begin to gather on pansies in newly planted pots intended for my parents’ grave. I wish I could bring them in out of the cold but there’s nowhere to put them out of harm’s way. I look up into the sky. There seems no end to this.

Everyday Things

Bring me all your regrets, my love. I will patch each one with Sachiko spells.

A needle and threads of gold and silver.

Stitch each imperfection into a pattern we can recognise.

A sequence that makes sense. Beautiful mistakes celebrated with artful intention.

My love, pick all your sorrows from the thorny stem of bramble branch, there’s a bucket by the door.

I am mixing flour, butter, iced water.

Kneading enough dough to enfold each bleeding berry, mixed with sugar.

We will set the timer and take it from the hot oven to eat when cool, with cream.

Open the door and let me gather all your pains, my love. Let me pick them up from the floor, collect them in a basket.

I will wash them over and over, rinse and spin, scoop them all in my arms.

Then peg them on the line in the bright morning sun. We will watch them through the window while the kettle boils.

Wind and sun will do together what we cannot. We will sit and sip, watch them drying.

Reclaiming their rightful shapes as ordinary everyday things.

Alice Bennett

So Green the Grass

So green the grass, so clean the path, On the road not travelled by.

To longing eyes it looks as if

There’s nothing we did right.

And yet I know each way in life

Bears wonderful nights skies

And dawns and rain, and thorns and pain, And songs of joy and pride.

What if, what if, I ask myself, I went with the wrong tide?

What if, what if, I ask again, There’s beauty, on this side?

37 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024
Poetry - Week 1
Photo by James Beck Photo by TASK camera club Photo by TASK camera club

Mac Donagh Station is ven

The Kilkenny great war memorial committee will host a commemoration ceremony at Mac Donagh junction this Sunday June 9.

The event will be held to remember all those who fought , died and survived in World War ll.

In particular, it will commemorate D Day, the name that was given to the June 6, 1944, invasion of the beaches at Normandy in northern France by troops from the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom and other countries during World War II. France at the time was occupied by the armies of Nazi Germany, and the amphibious assault—codenamed Operation Overlord—landed some 156,000 Allied soldiers on the beaches of Normandy by the end of the day.

Despite their success, some 4,000 Allied troops were killed by German soldiers defending the beaches. At the time, the D-Day invasion was the largest naval, air and land operation in history, and within a few days about 326,000 troops, more

than 50,000 vehicles and some 100,000 tons of equipment had landed. By August 1944, all of northern France had been liberated, and in spring of 1945 the Allies had defeated the Germans. Historians often refer to D-Day as the beginning of the end of World War II.

Sunday will see the Kilkenny men and women, connected with the war remembered.

Mac Donagh train station which is named in honour of Thomas Mac Donagh, was opened in 1848 and from the beginning was closely connected with providing security to the nearby military barracks. The barracks itself was built between 1801 and 1803 as a direct result of the 1798 rebellion.

The train station was used extensively to transport troops to conflicts such as the Crimean War 1854/1856, the Anglo Boer war 1899/1902 and the Great War 1914/1918. Many thousands of soldiers, sailors, airmen, nurses, chaplains departed from this station to partake in the great uncertainty of war.

During the Great War over three thousand men and women from Kilkenny City and County enlisted and filtered through this railway station to the great unknown.

The young men going to war were filled with bravado, enthusiasm and excitement as they prepared to depart. At that time this small station, comprising of four lines, became a bustling mass of heaving humanity. Bands played, flags waved as family and friends gathered. A cacophony of chaotic noise reverberated. But in the midst of the revelry parents and sweethearts were in a fretful quandary. Aware that this could be the last time they would ever see their

loved ones, tears mingled with the parting hugs and kisses. For many there would not be a return journey.

These young men were leaving their homeland to fight in foreign places with strange sounding names. Names, that families at home, located on maps and this knowledge helped to maintain a sense of unity. And the frequent use of these names helped them become part of family life.

38 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024
Commemoration ceremony

ue to commemorate WW ll

The World War ll re-enactment display and commemoration event takes place on Sunday June 9th at MacDonagh railway station. Reenactment from 3pm to 6 with ceremony beginning at 4.15 sharp. This is a free event and all are welcome

We wish to thank Claire Stack, Cobh animation team for photos in this article which she shot in 2018.

39 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024
Commemoration ceremony

Come Dine WithMe

Roast aubergine with goulash sauce and sweet potato fries

Prep: 10 mins

Cook: 30 mins

Serves: 2

Sunday lunch. Teamed with a goulash sauce and sweet potato chips, you can pack in all five of your 5-a-day.


• For the burger

• 1 l arge aubergine, thickly sliced

• 4 ts p rapeseed oil

• 225g pr epared weight sweet potatoes, cut into narrow chips

• 1 t bsp fresh thyme leaves, plus a few for sprinkling

• 2 sm all onions (190g), halved and sliced

• 1 gr een pepper, deseeded and diced

• 2 g arlic cloves, sliced

• 1 ts p smoked paprika

• 85g c herry tomatoes, halved

• 1 t bsp tomato purée

• 1 ts p vegetable bouillon powder

• 200g b ag baby spinach, wilted in a pan or the microwave

• 25g p umpkin seeds



Heat oven to 240C/220C fan/gas


Heat 1 tsp oil in a non-stick pan, add the onions, cover the pan and

7. Brush the aubergine slices with 1 tsp oil, put on a baking sheet and roast for 15 mins. Meanwhile place a wire cooling rack on top of a baking tray. Toss the sweet potatoes and thyme with 2 tsp oil, then scatter them over the rack and set aside until ready to cook.

leave to cook for 5 mins. Take off the lid and stir – they should be a little charred now. Stir in the green pepper and garlic, cover the pan and cook for 5 mins more. Put the sweet potatoes in the oven and bake for 15 mins while you get on with the rest of the sauce.


Stir the paprika into the onions and peppers, pour in 150ml water, then stir in the cherry tomatoes, tomato purée and bouillon. Cover and simmer for 10 mins while you cook the spinach according to pack instructions.

Stir in the seeds.


Arrange the aubergine, fries and spinach in bowls and spoon on the goulash sauce. Scatter with thyme, if you like.

Rice noodle salad with peanut butter tempeh

Prep:1 0 mins

Cook: 20 mins - 22 mins

Serves: 2

Rustle up this healthy vegan noodle salad. The star of the show are crisp nuggets of tempeh – compressed soya beans – with a moreish nutty coating.


• rapeseed oil, for the baking tray

• 2 tbsp crunchy peanut butter

• 1 large large garlic clove, finely grated

• 100g tempeh, thinly sliced and cut into bite-size pieces

For the salad

• 100g vermicelli rice noodles

• 1 large lime, zested and juiced

• 1 tbsp sweet chilli sauce

• 1 large carrot (160g), cut into matchsticks

• 160g piece of cucumber, halved,

deseeded and thinly sliced at an angle



Heat the oven to 200C/180C fan/gas

6. Line a baking tray with a sheet of foil and rub with a few drops of oil. Put the peanut butter in a small bowl and mix with 2 tbsp boiling water and the garlic. Stir in the tempeh to coat. Arrange the pieces, spaced apart, on the baking tray, and bake for 10-12 mins until golden.


Meanwhile, cook the rice noodles following pack instructions. Rinse and drain well. Mix the lime zest and juice with the chilli sauce in a large bowl, and stir in the carrot, cucumber and spring onions. Toss through the drained noodles, then the mint and coriander. Pile into bowls and top with the baked tempeh. Serve straightaway.

40 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024
Food & Drink

Eric: every parent’s worst nightmare

Eric is a six part Netflix original series written by Abi Morgan (The Iron Lady), starring Benedict Cumberbatch as genius and narcissistic puppeteer named Vincent. Mastermind of the puppet-based hit show Good Day Sunshine, Vincent is forced to reassess his life, behaviour, marriage, and ongoing intergenerational conflict with his parents, when his nine-year-old son Edgar (Ivan Morris Howe) goes missing.

Vincent becomes hooked on the belief that Edgar will return, if the puppet he was working on for Vincent’s show comes to life. The titular Eric then enters proceedings – a monstrous vision only Vincent can see (also voiced by Cumberbatch,) acting as a physical manifestation of his rapidly deteriorating mental health and giving voice to everything Vincent is unable to

say out loud. Although the central storyline involves the nightmare scenario of a missing child, universally feared by parents, the series encompasses racism, drug use, and homophobia amid the rising hysteria of the AIDS crisis.

It’s 80s New York, but not with the feel-good nostalgia most view the era with, although the hard-hitting issues are important in the way they shaped history. As with many hit shows, those who identify with the series’ themes, want to know whether it’s a true story - the creator has spoken out.

Eric isn’t based on true events, but reflects the experiences of creator Abi Morgan and encounters she had living in New York in the ‘80s. Speaking to Radio Times, Morgan said “I think growing up in the UK in the 80s, I remember being

haunted by those stories of children who had gone missing, and then when I went to New York, I looked after a young boy in New York in the mid 80s.”

She adds “While I was out there, I saw the milk carton kids and the missing persons. So that has always been very haunting. I think in choosing to go back to that time, I wanted to go back to that very vivid period in history where, obviously, there were those cases.

But in many ways, it was more a kind of shout-out to those cities where kids can go missing. At the heart of the show is Vincent’s belief that ‘I want to live in a world where a child goes out into the world and can come home safe.”

An emotional crime drama that follows the desperate search of a father when his nine year old son disap-

pears one morning on the way to school.

Although the series isn’t focussed on a specific missing child, there’s one scene encompassing something all parents have faced at some point - judgment. During a press briefing about Edgar’s disappearance, a journalist addresses Vincent with: “Letting him walk to school when he was only in fourth grade, is that a decision you regret?”

Instead of blaming parents for not being able to keep their children safe, the series points to wider issues resulting in crimes including kidnapped (or runaway) kids, including homelessness, drugs, and societal stressors that lead to mental health breakdown. Overall, the series offers viewers a lot to think about, even if some have found it uncomfortable and confronting, as well as absolutely heartbreaking.

Airplane heist comedy Crew comes to Netflix

When three flight attendants strapped for cash stumble on a gold-smuggling ring just as their employer goes bankrupt, they covertly join in to save their livelihoods.

Written by Nidhi Mehra and Mehul Suri (Veere Di Wedding), the comedy-thriller Crew from director Rajesh Krishnan (Lootcase), stars Tabu, Kareena Kapoor, and Kriti Sanon. When the movie premiered in India in March, it swiftly became the thirdhighest-grossing Hindi film of 2024 and one of Netflix most watch. It’s in sub-titles, by the eye but very much

worth effort.

When Geeta’s husband, Arun (Kapil Sharma), had to leave the family business, the couple was forced to downsize from a palace to a modest apartment in Mumbai. To make ends meet, Geeta (Tabu) got a job as a flight attendant, and Arun began a food delivery service. Geeta longs to move to Goa, where she wants them to open their own restaurant. Divya (Sanon) was top of her class and trained to be a pilot, but the recession hit and left her without a job. She pretends that she’s

a pilot to her family, but in reality she’s a flight attendant who can’t afford to pay off the loan she owes.

Jasmine (Kapoor) has always had a taste for the finer things, despite growing up in poverty. She’s been trying to get her skin care business off the ground, but needs funding.

What do these three have in common besides being flat broke? They all work as flight attendants for Kohinoor Airlines — and haven’t been paid their salaries in months. So when they find their ageing colleague Mr. Rajvanshi

(Daayama) dead mid-flight with gold bricks strapped to his chest, it plants a seed. Not only is Kohinoor on the brink of bankruptcy, but a number of its senior employees are running a gold-smuggling operation on the side. So Geeta, Divya, and Jasmine — in dire straits after news of the company’s financial woes — hit up Kohinoor’s head of HR, Mr. Mittal (Rajesh Sharma), to get them in on the side biz. Will the trio run enough gold to cash in on a big payday before they’re caught dead in their tracks?

1. Camden

This is an exciting Disney + documentary that has the potential to transport the audience back to the glorious days of London’s Corner which played a pivotal role in transforming the lives of many wellknown artists. The documentary also features exclusive interviews of renowned personalities who started their career in the popular streets of Camden.

2. Geek Girl

This coming-of-the-age series on Netflix is based on Holly Smale’s novel of the same name. The plot of the drama delves into the life of a neurodivergent teen girl who comes under the spotlight when she wins a competition to become the next supermodel. Watch her balance her personal and school life while navigating the competitive fashion universe.

3. The Life You Wanted

The newly arrived Italian series on Netflix follows a transgender woman named Gloria who is happy with her new life until a shadow from her past re-enters and shakes up her entire life. The show is headlined by Vittoria Schisano and Giuseppe Zeno.

4. The First Omen

Horror genre lovers are in for a treat. Disney+ has rolled out the prequel to 1976’s The Omen. The plot of the movie centres around an American woman who moves to Rome to start a new life. But her dream of a happy new life is shattered when she learns a shocking truth involving the Antichrist.

5. New Amsterdam Season 4

The makers of medical drama New Amsterdam are back on Netflix with a new season that delves into the life of Dr Max Goodwin who struggles to strike a balance between his professional and personal lives. Will he be able to come up with a strategy to resolve his issues and maintain a balanced life? The series features Ryan Eggold, Freema Agyeman, and Anupam Kher, among others.

41 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024 Advertisement TVAdvertisement & Streaming
you can stream this weekend 5
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Kilkenny Sport Focus

Michael O’Leary

Mile Marker road race

A big turnout is expected this Sunday in Danesfort for The Mile Marker Road Race.

Their was a good turnout at the recent launch ahead of Sunday's event, and the race which was first held in 2018 has grown in popularity with big numbers attending each year.

This year sees the introduction of a new 5KM distance, along with the 5 and 10 Mile races that have been held since the first running of the event.

The Mile Dash is also back again this year for Primary School children, and families with all children that cross the line will get a medal along with an ice cream from Billy Brennan's ice cream van.

The Mile Marker committee is made up of parents from St. Michaels National

School and all money raised goes directly to St. Michaels National School in Danesfort.

Following the first two runnings of the event in 2018 and 2019, The National School were able to replace the windows to the rear of the school and give the children a new playground.

The family 1 Mile event will take place at 11:40am, with the main event kicking off at 12 noon, while there will be a fantastic tech top on offer for all participants.

Sunday's event is sponsored by local man Philip Ireland of Philip Ireland Tyres, and for further information as to how to enter you can register on https:// It's a busy period in Athletics with several events across the county and beyond.

The County Track and Field Championships were held at the Watershed over the past month, with a lot of those successful Athletes will be competing in The Leinster Championships over the

next few weeks.

Just a few miles from Danesfort, Stoneyford staged their 15th running of their annual 5KM and 10KM challenge in May and their was a huge turnout with runners

from across the South East region competing, while the Tullaroan Marathon took place last Saturday as it traditionally does on the June Bank Holiday weekend.

Meanwhile, St. Senans Ath-

Stress and your pain system

Knowledge is power. Those following this series to date now know that stress is essential for survival – the ‘fight or flight’ response kept our ancestors alive. We also learned that excessive, sustained stress can negatively affect our health – and that inflammation and the immune system play a key role.

This week, we will consider how this impacts pain.

Stress is Painful

Excessive stress increases the risk of injury and impacts recovery from exercise, injury or surgery. Heightened levels of inflammation, which can result from stress, cause our pain system to become more sensitive.

The so called ‘pain system’ includes nerves in the body, the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord), the immune system as well as elements of the endocrine system (hormone system). Stress and inflammation play a role at every level of this system. We will focus on

Stress can sensitise your pain system (and friends can help to desensitise it)

perhaps the simplest part of this system today – the nerve endings in our tissues.

Sensitive Nerves Send More Signals

There are many types of neurons (individual nerve cells) in the body – some of these are sensory neurons that send signals to the central nervous system

associated with pressure, temperature, or chemical changes. Inflammation tends to increase the sensitivity of these nerve endings –causing them to fire and send signals more easily than they would otherwise. The consequence of this is that more and more signals are sent to the spinal cord and the brain. For example,

the nerve endings that send pressure signals, when exposed to inflammatory chemicals, will fire when a lower-than-usual amount of pressure is applied to them. Think of a time you were sick or run-down – did you feel more sensitive to heat/cold, pressure or bright lights? More signals coming through to the brain and

spinal cord from the body's tissues play a role in the likelihood of something being painful. This is just one way in which the pain system becomes more sensitive – we also see effects on the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord), the immune system and endocrine (hormone) system that

letic Club in Kilmacow are hosting their 2024 Summer Camp in the 1st week of July from Tuesday 2nd - Friday 5th July in Kilmacow Sports Complex. Cost is 65 euro with 10 euro discount for additional child.The camp will be run by experienced coaches and it will be fun filled with plenty of activities for all.

The link to join and register is: https://eventmaster. ie/event/JlB9CpvHRk For further information you can check out St. Senans Athletic Club page on Facebook or email

Finally, both Cliodhna Manning and Peter Lynch from The Kilkenny City Harriers Club are part of The Ireland Squad for The European Athletcis Championships in Rome that start today.Cliodhna is part of The 4 x 400 metre squad, and she will be hoping to be part of The squad for the upcoming Olympics in Paris, while Peter will run the 10,000 metres.

are both pivotal in how we experience pain.

Sensitivity and Persistent Pain

Can you see how, for those with persistent pain problems, more sensitive nerve endings might contribute to them experiencing pain? If your nerve endings are more excitable, more sensitive, they are more likely to send signals to the brain. Their ‘threshold’ is lower – i.e. it doesn’t take as much pressure/ stretch/ temperature as it used to take to activate these nerve endings.

It is possible to go the other way – it is possible to DEsensitise your pain system too. Our body is adaptable, it can change in many ways over the course of our lives. How do you think you might be able to settle down an overly-sensitised pain system? We will look into this in future articles.

So now you might have a slightly greater appreciation for the role that inflammation and stress can play in our experience of pain.

Social Support is a Great Stress Reliever

Social support is one of our most potent stress relievers. So, if possible, line up some time with a person or people who you like to spend time with this week – you will be doing your pain system a favour!

45 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024
Chartered Physiotherapist at Nano Physiotherapy, Kilkenny WWW.NANOPHYSIO.IE

Community & GAA Notes

Kilkenny GAA clubs and Community news


Lotto results for 28th May. Numbers drawn - 3, 13, 19. No Jackpot winner.

€30 each to - James Crotty, Arthur Byrne, Pauline Fitzpatrick, Eamonn Rafter, Frank O Neill.


Well done to Clara’s Luke Lawlor and Philip Carrigan who claimed Celtic Challenge medals on Sunday as Kilkenny saw off Tipperary Blue by 1-18 to 1-14 in the final in Nowlan Park. Luke scored one of the points from his right half back position while Philip was a valued member of the panel.


Congratulations to the Clara trio of Grace Barcoe, Emma Shortall and Keara Ryan who were part of the Kilkenny senior camogie squad that easily accounted for Antrim in Belfast on Saturday. Keara and Emma both came on for the Kittens as they won 6-15 to 0-9.


Best wishes to Clara’s Conor Phelan and John Murphy as they try to plot Dublin’s downfall in next Saturday’s Leinster senior hurling final in Croke Park. The game has a 6pm throw in.



It was a busy weekend at O’Loughlin Gaels club as parking and facilities were provided for many of the supporters attending the All Ireland Under 20 final. Thanks to all of the club members who helped out. There was a really positive response from all the visitors to the club who received a great welcome and were so well looked after.

The result of the game brought much joy to the members of the club who hail from Offaly, among them, Sean, Aidan, Coleman, Hugh, Francis and Noel.


Places are filling up fast on the bus to the Leinster

Senior Hurling Final Kilkenny v Dublin in Croke Park on Saturday 8th June. Departing St. John’s Park at 2.30pm. Adults €20, Children (Under 16) €15. List of names in bar or contact Stephen to book 086-1993711.


Congratulations to Jeff Tyrrell and Jack Walsh who were members of the Kilkenny team which won the Celtic Challenge on Sunday last beating Tipperary in the final in UPMC Nowlan Park.

Well done also to Laura Greene, Laura Murphy and Danielle Quigley who all played in the Kilkenny senior camogie team’s victory over Antrim in Corrigan Park in the All Ireland championship second round.


There was no winner of O’Loughlin Gaels club lotto dated May 28th. Numbers Drawn 2, 12, 17, 18 Bonus 10. Play now at

Promotors Draw. 1.Matt Canavan . 2. Bridie and Jim Tynan c/o H Mahon. 3. Moira Fox/o Paddy Greene. 4.Ann Morrissey. 5. Benny c/o M Cody. 6. Matt and Mary Feighery c/o H Mahon. 7. Ann Lyons c/o H Mahon. 8. Lillian Holohan c/o Online. 9. Emma Butler c/o Online. 10. Amy Burke c/o Online. Thank you for your continued support.


If you haven’t done so already don’t forget to book your child’s place on O’Loughlin Gaels Summer Camp.

Week 1 is from Monday 29th July to Friday 2nd August and Week 2 is from Tuesday 6th to Friday 9th August. Stephen Murphy will be in the club Sunday morning at 10am to collect payment for the Summer Camp and take any new registrations. Payment must be made by 26th of June to secure your place and a jersey. Any payments after this date will not be guaranteed a jersey.


It was a busy week for O’Loughlin Gaels underage teams. The Under 12’s won the Newtownshandrum tournament playing some great hurling.

The Under 14’s had a narrow win over Dicksboro in the league 0-10 to 1-6 in a game played in Palmerstown on Thursday last. They also won the Ballyboden Tournament last weekend defeating Na Fianna in the final.


Congratulations and well done to the girls from St.



Freshford Town Junior side took on Castlewarren in the Division 1 Cup Final on Sunday afternoon last at Derdimus. Forced to field without a number of top players the boys gave a great account of themselves but were beaten 1-0.

Freshford town U 14 boys had a big win over Stoneyford recently winning 5-0 and are now league champions. Well done to the boys and their management team and all involved.


Cllr. Michael McCarthy welcomed the surface rehabilitation works recently completed along the Freshford Loop Walk. Cllr. McCarthy noted that following his many discussions with key stakeholders, this popular amenity is now in top condition for a busy summer ahead. He expressed his thanks to Trail Kilkenny who secured the funding under the 2023 Walk Scheme Development Fund to undertake these works.


Huge credit goes to the newly formed clean up group and FAS workers who have the facilities in tip top condition and all the recent positive feedback is testament to this.

Family membership options for our walkway are available now. If any local businesses or family’s would like to sponsor a light pole and help contribute towards the development cost of the walkway and further future developments in Pairc Lachtain, please contact any committee member



Freshfords longest running summer camp takes place again this year at the GAA Grounds under local man JJ Grace and his coaches. JJ has been running the camp for many years now and it will take place from 29th July to 2nd August this year. For more information or for booking please contact JJ on 0868629666


St St.Lachtains Church Museum and Arts Centre are open every Saturday and Sunday from 11.30 am to 4.30pm. Ionad Lachtain welcomed bilingual spoken word artist Ben MacCaoilte and his perfanc “Lifting the Gate” on Saturday evening last.

John’s Senior School on their victory in the Primary Schools Camogie final against Presentation in St. James Park on Thursday last.


Well done to Leon Delaney from the O’Loughlin’s handball club who won the Lenister Final representing Kilkenny GAA Handball and O’Loughlin Gaels. Leon came out on top winning his two games against his Wexford opponent from Castlebridge after a very close and great battle.


Hard luck to the O’Loughlin Gaels u15s B Camogie team who competed in Kilkenny local Féile at Palmerstown last weekend. After wins over Lisdowney and Kilmacow the girls were pipped by the home side Dicksboro and just missed out on reaching the final. A great effort by all the girls and coaches.


Irish Summer Camp in Johnswell Community Hall for 9-11 year olds from 22nd to 26th July. 10 am to 1pm each day. Contact or 0876673302 for details or to book.


Tickets are now available through O’Loughlin Gaels GAA club for the 2024 Kilkenny Hurlers. Co-Op Draw. There is over €125,000 in prizes over 5 draws. Tickets cost €50 and at least half the value of every ticket sold goes to the selling club. Why not support your local club and Kilkenny GAA and buy a ticket? Contact any Committee member in O’Loughlin Gaels to get your ticket.


If you wish to have any item included in the St. John’s parish notes please email it to pro.oloughlingaels.



Fresford Community Cafe launched its Community market on Saturday morning last in The Alley at The Loop café. It will be held each Saturday from 10am –1pm and your support wowed be greatly appreciated. New stalls would be very welcome and anyone interested in taking a stall can contact any member of the


The local split the pot draw is back in action and last week’s winner was Donnacha Long, Garnamanagh who won the sum of €425. Proceeds this month go to Freshford Tidy Towns. Entry cost just €2 and envelopes are available in all local shops and pubs so be in to win.


Freshford bridge club continues every Monday at 7.30pm in Tulla Hall, Three castles. New members are always very welcome. For further information please contact Olive on 087 9257610.


Mass is held in the Parish Church each Wednesday morning at 9.30am and each Sunday morning at 11am.wiith Mass in Tulla church on Saturday evenings at 7.30pm. and 11am Maas in St.Lachtains Church on Sundays. The parish newsletter is available on their website every week and also on the website you are free to pay your dues and make donations or any other contributions and you can find out more about it on the website or feel free to contact in the Parish Office. Please note community notices for the parish newsletter should be left in or emailed to the Parish Office by 11am on Thursdays. Parish office hours are Tuesday, Thursday and Friday from 9am to 1pm. Mass Cards

Special printed parish cards are available at the Parish Office or from Annette at Tulla Church signed by Monsignor Kennedy. You can contact the Parish office on 056 8832843 or by email – freshfordd@ossory. ie. Contact Mongr Kieron Kennedy on that number or on 087 25235 21


Are you struggling with anxiety or depression or finding life difficult or feeling isolated at this time GROW is there to help you. Their Mental Health support Groups are free and confidential and open to all no referral or booking is needed. For more information on same you can contact Mary on 087 28434 2 If you can’t cope and need support text HELLO to 50808. SAMARITAN - Whatever you’re going through a Samaritan will face it with you – available 24 hours a day 365 days a year – Freephone 1161Alone is available for older people who need support and

46 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024
We welcome all GAA Club and Community notes for publication in The Kilkenny Observer email to
O’Loughlin Gaels Under 12 team. Winners of the Newtowmshandrum Tournament O’Loughlin Gaels Under 14 team. Winners of Ballyboden Tournament Clara’s Luke Lawlor and Philip Carrigan with the Celtic Challenge trophy.

you can call them on 0818 222024 (8am to 8pm)

AMBER KILKENNY WOMENS REFUGE – is available for confidential support relating to domestic violence - call them on 1850 424244 (24/7) or on 056 7771404 or email



With the Junior and Leaving Certificate examinations due to commence next week the James Stephens management committee would like to extend best wishes to the club’s hurling and camogie players as well as all students from St. Patrick’s Parish as they prepare to sit the national examinations.


Congratulations to our Feile camogie team who were victorious in the final of the U15 Féile E competition on the Kells Road on a sun drenched Saturday afternoon. A run of three games unbeaten in the round robin against Conahy, Barrow Rangers and Erin’s Own rewarded the girls with a place in the final against near rivals Dicksboro. Down by a point at half time in the final didn’t faze this group of girls and in a battling second half, the girls dug deep, and were ultimately rewarded with a well deserved four point victory.


Our senior team had a good win on Friday evening against Piltown in the summer league. With both teams missing a host of county girls it was great to get a competitive match with the scores going back and forth until the very end. Down by a goal at half time the girls came good to win by the narrowest of margins 4-8 to 5-4.


On Wednesday evening the Junior hurlers suffered a heavy 5-23 to 2-20 defeat at the hands of Windgap in the 2024 Junior league quarter final in a chilly Larchfield. Trailing by 1-05 to 0-06 after 15 minutes, having missed a number of goal chances, Fionn Cody kept the Village in touch at 2-07 to 1-08 with a fine finish to the net from a Jeffrey Coyne pass in the 25th minute. A three point contribution from Oisin Bateman before half time still left the Village 2-11 to 1-12 in arrears at the break. After Oisin Bateman and Ed Lauhoff pointed inside three minutes of the restart to level the game at 2-11 to 1-14 the stronger and more experienced Windgap side took a firm grip of the fixture thereafter. Despite putting up brave resistance, adding 1-12 over the remaining 30 minutes, the young Village team was forced to concede a further 3-12 to the “Power” packed southern club side who easily claimed their place in the A.C. Junior league semi-final.


Members and supporters are recommended to tune into Liam Kelly-O’Rourke’s latest club podcast which features interviews with recently crowned AllIreland handball champions Joe Hennessy and Noah Manogue. The Ruby All-Ireland handball doubles title won by Joe with his trusty partner Johnny Brennan (St. Martins) was the 14th All-Ireland crown won by the five times GAA All-Star over a long sporting career. Noah won the All-Ireland 40x20 minor handball title in April.

The podcast also features Nuala Walton as she reflects on the successful running of the Billy Walton Memorial tournament which took place in conjunction with the formal opening of the building extensions at Pairc Sheamuis Stiophain last weekend.


Congratulations to rising club star players Dara Behan and Zac Scanlon members of the Kilkenny Celtic Challenge Cup winning team. The young Village players played their part in helping the young “Cats” lineout narrowly defeat Tipperary 1-18 to 1-14 in a typical hard fought final between traditional rivals in Sunday afternoon’s final in UPMC Nowlan Park to claim the inaugural Michael Hogan Cup. Well done lads.


With only just over a week to go to the first draw in the Kilkenny County Board promoted 2024 Hurler’s Co-Op draw members are encouraged to purchase the €50 tickets for the five draws, three of which have a car as the first prize. The club’s share of the fund will help finance the day to day running costs of the club and contribute to the ongoing future development projects being discussed at present. Tickets may be purchased through co-ordinator Tom Keane 086 3481882 or any committee member.


Congratulations to Sean Manogue on winning the Kilkenny Junior Scratch Cup with an impressive sub-par first round of 71 followed by a 79 for a total of 150 to claim the prestigious title by a clear margin of five shots. The Junior Scratch is for golfers in the 4 to 10 handicap category. In a nice coincidence, the winner’s trophy was presented to Sean by Kilkenny Golf Club captain Fergal Cantwell, himself a gifted forward and member of the James Stephens county minor (1991/’92) and U-21 (1993) championship winning teams.


As part of the Cruinniu na nOg Festival, two workshops will take place in Loughboy Library on Friday 14th June. From 3.30 to 5.00pm, circus juggler Stephen McGinley will give a fun filled workshop on Juggling, Diabolo, spinning plates and lots more for any young enthusiast interested in learning those amazing skills. Stephen will have lots of props so everyone can take part in the fun event. The workshop is suitable for children aged seven and upwards. The second session will be a Samba Drumming workshop which will take place from 6.30 to 7.15pm also in Loughboy Library. The drumming workshop is a full tilt hands on session where young beat makers with their parents/guardian/or grandparents will learn about rhythm through samba drumming, musical games, body percussion call and response. Again, this session would be suitable for children aged 5 and upwards. As places are limited for both events phone 056-7794176 or email to book a place for either/both events.


On Friday next 7th June, from 6pm, librarian Alan Dunne advises that storyteller Helena will provide a fun-filled evening of the freakiest, funniest fairy tales for children from the age of five and upwards. Because of limited space Alan suggests that parents/guardians should pre-book by email loughboy@kilkennylibrary. ie or phone 056-7794176. Then on Tuesday 11th., also in the library, from 11.15 am to 12.15pm UPMC will be offering a physio education session on how best to exercise and manage falls prevention. The session will include information on how to implement simple lifestyle changes to help one remain independent as you age. Again, contact the library to book a place.


Last week’s numbers were, 5, 7, 15, 26. There was no winner. The €40 consolation winners were Sue Smith, Judy Brennan, Aine Colclough, Fergal Walsh and Joe Marsello.



If you wish to submit news items, club events, announcements etc you can do so by emailing them to Deadline is Saturday 6pm. LOTTO GAA AND SOCCER

Jackpot now stands at €20,000.Numbers drawn on 26 /05 /24 were 3, 10, 25, 29. there was no winner.

The following won €30 each Shearan Bolger, Edward Haden. Tucker Foley, Aileen Sheehy, Aine Phelan. Tickets are available from any club member. THE GRAIG TIDY TOWN DRAW

Winners for Draw on 24/05/2024. First Prize €400, EddelBolger, 2nd Prize €50 Sally Hayden, 3rd Prize, €25 Aoibheann Mc Evoy, 4th. Prize €25 Josh and Ali Hamilton. 5th €25 Prize Jemma Quigley 6th Prize €25, Ollie, Ruby and Patrick, 7th Prize €25 Joan Ryan. Money raised through Tidy Towns Jackpot will be used to keep

the town looking well all year round. Draw takes place at 4pm on Thursdays.


The Monthly Rambling House Session is on the second Friday of the month in Newtown Hall, where you can enjoy music and song from local artists and also many from the surrounding district also join in. The next Session is on Friday June 14th. at 8.00pm.



Congratulations to our youth team and their coaches on their fantastic 9-1 win over East End in the semi-final of the Under-18 Henderson Youths Cup. Bridge scores were as follows: Eoin O’Neill (4), Kieran Timmons (1), Cian Phelan (1), Tadgh Ahern (2) and James Brennan (1). Hard luck to our youth team and their coaches Tom, David and James on their narrow 3-2 defeat in the final of The Henderson Cup. A summer soccer academy for boys and girls aged 5-14 will be held in Goresbridge on 7th-9th July from 10am to 1pm. Further information from Conor English tel. 085-1321578.


Masses will be celebrated in Goresbridge at 7.30pm on Saturday and at 10.00am on Sunday as well as in Paulstown at 11.30am. Weekday mass is at 10am in Paulstown on Friday and on Tuesday and in Goresbridge on Wednesday, at 10am. Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament takes place in Paulstown every Tuesday after morning mass and lasts until 6pm.


Are you interested in enjoying light gardening in the community garden in Goresbridge? Pick up gardening tips, enjoy a chat and a cup of tea afterwards. We meet every Wednesday at 11am in the Respond House, St Brigid’s Close off Barrack Street. All welcome. Feel free to bring a friend, neighbour, family member.


The weekly Friday chatting in Irish continues over a cuppa and more in the Goodly Barrow each Friday at 11am.


A Multisport camp returns to the pitch this year on the week of July 1st-5th. The camps are suitable for children aged between 5-13 years and runs from 10am until 2pm. Summer Multisports camps are run and organised by PE teachers whose aim is to provide children with an opportunity to have fun and be active through a range of sports (GAA, football, frisbee, rounders, Olympic handball etc.) this summer. Cost for 1 child is €70 with discounts for each child after! To book please visit To find out more please contact 0876884136


Split the pot in aid of Goresbridge Rural Development has gone online. Simply scan the QR code or go to


A Town Teams group has been established for Goresbridge with the assistance of Kilkenny County Council. There was a good turnout last week and plenty of interest in taking the Goresbridge plan forward. A

number of sub-groups were formed to lead on various aspects of community development here. The elected chairs of each sub-group were then automatically selected to sit on the Town Teams group. The membership is as follows: Active Retirement, Chris Barcoe. Business/Retail, John Quinn. Sport, David Holmes. Farming, Geraldine Keating. Arts/Culture/Heritage, Siobhan Prendergast. Health/Wellbein, Tom Healy. Tidy Towns/Residents Association, Colette Murphy. Youth/Education, Zoe Joyce. Infrastructure/Housing/Transporp, Shane Dalton. Tourism and River Development Joe Connolly Community, Mary Meaney. Biodiversity/Climate Action , Willie Lennon.



Masses during the week. Wednesday and Thursday morning - 10.30am


On Sunday, the Feast of Corpus Christi, the First Communion children, together with their parents were welcomed to a special Thanksgiving Mass. Some of the children took the opportunity to dress up in their special clothes. Billy Molloy and Deirdre O’Brien provided the music.


The June collection for the priests of the parish will be taken up on the weekend of June, 15th and 16th. The priests are most appreciative of the support of parishioners.


The dates for this year’s outdoor masses have been decided. Tullaherin Cemetery, Saturday, 3rd August 8pm. Bennettsbridge Cemetery, Sunday, 4th August 10.30am


No winner of Jackpot last week. Numbers, 1, 6, 23, 28. Jackpot now €8,350.00. Consolation Prizes, Consolation Prizes, Lianna Murphy, Kilkenny, Eileen Walpole, Stoneen, Ann Shanahan, Gowran Road, Kevin Ryan, c/o Mahony’s, Ella Griffiths, Norewood Heights.


Meeting as usual on Wednesday at 2pm. Apart from the usual activities enjoyed, plans are afoot to travel to Wexford to visit the Little Island Power Plant.


Two students from Bennettsbridge featured in the awards ceremony for Transition Year students in Grennan College last week. Joe Martin was TY Student of the Year 2024 and Hivert Baraut was nominated. Joe and Hivert will be familiar to locals as they are employed in the local Centra Supermarket. Congratulations to them both!


Clara Bridge Club which meets in Connolly’s Pub, Dunbell every Monday night, 7.30pm to 10.30pm will re-open on September, 9th. The club is affiliated to CBAI and would welcome some new members. If interested please call, 086 8421023


Bennettsbridge had seven girls involved on the Loreto minor A-team which won the camogie Leinster final against Presentation Kilkenny last week. Leah Croke, Katie Mulcahy, Amy Hughes, Lauren Skehan, Sarah Forde, Eve Byrne and Katie Holden all put in a great performance for the Presentation.


East End U14 girls and the U13 Boys Green put up a

47 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024 Community & GAA Notes
We welcome all GAA Club and Community notes for publication in The Kilkenny Observer email to
Tom Healy Back row John Quinn, Shane Dalton, Joe Connolly, Willie Lennon and Tom Healy Congratulations to rising club star players Dara Behan and Zac Scanlon members of the Kilkenny Celtic Challenge Cup winning team

Community & GAA Notes

brave performance in their respective semi-final games last week. Some brilliant soccer was played but unfortunately it wasn’t to be. Both teams gave it 110% all season and the club is very proud of them!

Best of luck to Evergreen U14 girls and Freebooters U13 boys in their finals

Hard luck to our U13 Yellow team losing out to Clover United by penalties in the shield final on Sunday last. The boys gave it their all, they never gave up and played some brilliant soccer. We are so very proud of each and every one of them and looking forward to next season. Big thank you to our brilliant coaches and all the loyal supporters.


Leinster Final.

Best wishes to Liam, Kevin and David Blanchfield and all the Kilkenny team as they take on Dublin this Saturday in Croke Park in the Leinster Final.

Club Games

Our under 14 A team had a good win over Barrow Rangers in their league while a very young under 14 second team lost out to St Martins. Our seniors lost out to Dicksboro in the Byrne Cup and will play Lisdowney at home today Friday at 7.30 pm. The Junior B team will play Glenmore at home next Sunday morning in the league semi final at 12 noon. Please see the Kilkenny Gaa website for details of upcoming fixtures and fixture changes. Best wishes to all ‘Bridge teams.

Membership 2024

This year’s membership can now be paid to registrar Samantha McGarry or to any club committee member. Membership fees are the same as last year. Forty euro for non playing members, eighty euro for student players and 120 euro for adult players. Early payment would be most appreciated. Membership can also be paid on the new club spot app. Please see the clubs Facebook and twitter pages for details.

Split the Pot

The next draw takes place next Friday at 6 pm in the clubhouse. Thanks again to all who supported.

Hurlers Co-Op Draw

The first of the five draws for this year’s Hurlers Co Op Draw (Piltown) will take place on Tuesday 11th June. The ticket price is €50 for the five draws. Once again huge cash prizes on offer, the first prizes in the 1st, 3rd and 5th draws is a car valued at €19k or cash of €14k, the first prizes in the 2nd and 4th draws is a Holiday valued at €6k or cash of €5k. The remaining 31 prizes on offer per draw range from €2,000 to €100. Tickets are now available from committee members or can also be bought through the fundraising page on the clubspot app. This is a very important fundraiser for the club as at least 50% of all ticket sales go to the club and hopefully we will have more lucky winners this year.



Congratulations to the 32 boys and girls from 5th and 6th classes in Johnstown /Crosspatrick who received their Confirmation recently. In the unavoidable absence of Bishop Coll the sacrament was administered by Fr. Ollie P.P.


Congratulations to Mairead, daughter of Richard and Imelda Curran, Foulkscourt and Andy Duncan, Scotland who were married recently in St. Kieran’s Church. They are wished a long and happy life together.

June envelopes for the support of the priests are now due.


The annual pilgrimage to Knock for Johnstown Parish will be held on Thursday August 1st. More details later.


The committee would like to thank the Birr and District Motor Club for their generous donation towards the Hall Restoration Project. The donation was initiated by James Murphy, Johnstown and Ger Conroy, Durrow (member of Birr motor club) who both work at Roadmaster. The money will go towards the purchase of equipment for the meeting room. Eoin Longworth, Ger Conway and the Birr and District Motor Club are wished all the best in their future endeavours.


A” teaching tekkers” summer camp will take place in the club field on the Rathdowney Road from Monday to Thursday August 12th to 15th from 10am to 3pm. Boys and girls age 5 to 14 and all skill levels. UEFA qualified coaches, free weighted ball. Places are limited, to book contact


Freaky fairytales storytime on Saturday June 8th in the Library at 10.30am. This will be a fun filled morning of the freakiest, funniest fairy tales you ever heard. From much loved classics with a twist to enthralling tales from around the world. Suitable for ages 5+ must be

accompanied by an adult Contact 0567794182. Learn to code will be held on Saturday June 15th from 11am to 1pm. Ages 8 to 12.


Sunday June 16th Admission €5, children free. All the fun of the fair plus a dog show. In conjunction with the festival, tickets are now on sale in all the business outlets, draw on the day. Five great prizes 1. Apple Iphone value €700, 2. Fuel voucher worth €100, 3. Summer garden hamper €100, 4. Drink and chocolate hamper €50 and 5. Hair voucher €50. Tickets €2 or three for €5. Big thanks to all the business owners, draw on festival day.


Two new courses will be held in September. Office Admin one to two mornings a week and Basic computers one to two mornings per week, all free courses.

One bed house still available at St. Kieran’s Homes for the Elderly. Contact 0568838466.


Winning numbers 9,10,15,27. There was five match threes Fenians, Hailey Ryan, Catriona Stapleton, Paul Norton and Hazel Dermody.


Congratulations to Orla Mackey, daughter of John and Sheila Mackey, Gathabawn, whose first novel “Mouthing” was launched by Penguin books in Mackeys Bar, Gathabawn recently. Well done Orla !! A good Summer read.


EMERALDS URLINGFORD AND GRAINE LOTTO May 27th prize fund was €18,200. Jackpot: €16,200. Numbers drawn: 13, 21, 23, 30 bonus no 11. No winner and no match three winner. Five lucky dips of €20 each: Bridge Barnaville, Noel Butler, Ann Burke, Kitty McEvoy, Eileen Quinlan. Promoters prize: Post Office.


In Graine Hall every Tuesday at 8.30pm. Live music, sets called by Paddy Martin. All are welcome. Contact Phil Fogarty 086 8638782; Mary Webster 087 7936113. URLINGFORD ARMS SPLIT THE POT

The June 2nd winner of Split the Pot is Catherine Hearn who will receive €557. Congratulations to Catherine on behalf of Urlingford Arms Darts Club. Tickets €2 on sale in participating businesses in town. Thanks to everyone for their continued support. Next week’s draw is for Urlingford Arms Darts Club, you can also Revolut 085 1075586 to enter.


The card game in Graine Hall on Wednesday nights has ceased for the summer months. We will return to our regular progressive 25 in the Autumn.


In case of emergency, call: 085 2726396.


Anyone wishing to submit news items, club events, announcements etc can do so by emailing If you have any photos you wish to include, please forward them to the email address.


St Kieran’s Homes for the Elderly: Applications are invited for the Vacant Tenancy of a one-bedroom house at St Kieran’s Place, Urlingford. To be eligible to apply you must be on the Kilkenny County Council Housing list. Applications are available from the Centre. Local Training Programme LTI: Names being taken for LTI QQI Level 4 due to start soon. New Courses: There will be two new courses commencing in September - Office Admin (one to two mornings a week). Basic Computers (one to two mornings a week). These courses will be free of charge.

Counselling Services: Our low cost counselling services, includes one-to-one, adult and teens. General Counselling: Bereavement, stress, anxiety and depression. Other counselling services available: Drug, substance and gambling addictions. Play therapy is now also available. Age 5+. Please contact Sue for more information or to make an appointment.

Senior Alert: If you need to apply for a Personal Alarm, please contact Sue or Josephine in the centre.

Defibrillator: Please note that there is a defibrillator located in the Mill Family Resource Centre if and when it may be required.

Appeal for Clothes Donations:

Any clothes donations would be greatly appreciated in aid of our counselling/play therapy services. Donations can be left into the Centre, please call before dropping off.

Jobs – Training Board: We have a Jobs Board here at the Centre, feel free to call in and take a look, we also offer help and support with CV’s and cover letters if required. For further information please contact us here at the Centre on 056 8838466.

48 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024
We welcome all GAA Club and Community notes for publication in The Kilkenny Observer email to
East end U 14 Girls following their semi-final Joe Martin, winner of the Transition Student of the Year in Grennan College with Hivert Baraut who was one of the nominees and teaching staff. East End U 13 boys Green Team put up a brave fight in their semi-final



Glengoole Wednesday 10am to 2pm, Gortnahoe Thursday 10am to 1pm


The dates for the cemetery masses are as follows, Glengoole & Ballinalacken Tuesday 2nd July at 7.30pm in Glengoole Church, Aglish Thursday 4th July at 7.30pm in the graveyard, Good Shepherd Thursday 11th July at 7.30pm in the graveyard, Fennor Thursday 25th July at 7.30pm in the graveyard and Boulick Thursday 15th August at 7.30pm in the graveyard.


Mass will take place in Ballynonty Garden of Remembrance on Tuesday 11th June at 7PM.


ALONE are seeking volunteers to provide companionship to an older person in your local area. Full training and support provided. If interested, please apply via Home - ALONE or for further information please contact Caroline at 086 0591399 or email caroline.


Deirdre Moore will attend The Millennium Family Resource Centre, Glengoole, on Monday 17th June. Phone 089 4478511 to make an appointment.


The annual pilgrimage to Lourdes will take place from June 14th to 20th. Any enquiries please contact Fr Walton or any member of the Parish pastoral group.


A lot of new books have come in to Gortnahoe Community Hall library. They are free to take home and the library is based inside the main door of the hall. When the hall is opened anyone can go inside the main door and select a book or books of their choice and they will disturb no one in the hall. In the last week a number of audio books have been added to the library. These audio books would suit anyone who might be visually impaired. Over the coming weeks more audio books will be added to the library. If you know anyone that would avail of these, please take one to them. This is a Gortnahoe Community Hall initiative and this idea will succeed with the local parish support.


Bridge is being played each Tuesday night in Gortnahoe Hall at 7.30pm. If you would like to join or find out more information please contact this number 089 4349106


Bingo continues this Saturday evening at the earlier time of 4.00pm with doors opening from 3.00pm and will continue each Saturday evening at the same time. Over €2,660 in prize money on offer including a special €500 game.


Congratulations to the last weekends winner of Split the Pot draw, Mary Hughes, Freshford, who won €173. Envelopes are available at the usual outlets, you can also Revolut to 0876777220. For this Sunday only Split the Pot will be in support of the Feile 2024. From the following Sundays of the month it will be in support of the defibrilator. The draw takes place each Sunday at 12pm in Gortnahoe Hall. Your support would be appreciated.


Gortnahoe Glengoole U15 boys team have been successful in the National Feile Competition and they will now head to Clonlara in Co. Clare for the regional stage of the competition. In order to raise funds to tog the team out properly and get them there, there is a number of fundraising events on this weekend. There will be a car wash at Campion Pumps from 10am to 4pm on Saturday 8th June, there will be a bake sale and coffee morning in Gortnahoe Hall on Sunday morning 9th June and this weekend’s Split the Pot will also go to help the fundraising venture. Please come and support this fundraising event.


A new defibrillator has been installed at Gortnahoe Community Hall and it is linked to the National Ambulance Service. A defibrillator is also being sourced for Glengoole Community Hall. As previously stated there were defibrillators in Grange, Ballysloe and at Mary Willie’s, each have now been taken down. It would be great if local people in these community areas would come together and look at the possibility of restoring a new defibrillator in each of these areas. The Split the Pot for the month of June is to support the defibrillator’s in the locality.


Sympathy to the Ryan family on the death of Denise Ryan, Fennor and Canada, whose ashes were interred in Boulick during the week.



The 2024 Tidy Towns is underway, many thanks and well done to everyone for their hard work so far the town is looking splendid.


The men’s shed meet on Tuesdays and Thursdays. If you wish to join please speak to JJ O Sullivan, John McGrath or any other member KNOCK

There will be a Pilgrimage to Knock on Saturday 22nd June 2024. A bus will be leaving, Freshford at 7.30 am, Jackmans Jenkinstown at 8.00 am, and Ballyragget at 8.15 am

Names as soon as possible to 056 7767676 / 086 3655418. Bus Fare €30


Cemetery Masses for this year are as follows, St Finans Cemetery Friday 7th of June at 7.30pm. Ballyouskill Saturday 8th June at 6.30pm. Rosconnel Friday the 14th of June at 7.30pm. Donaghmore Friday 21st of June at 7.30pm.



The intermediate hurlers scored a good win over Mooncoin in their most recent game of the St. Canices Credit Union Senior/Intermediate League on Thursday night last in Jenkinstown. A blistering start, which saw corner forward Rob Ring score a hat trick of goals in the opening half, ensured Conahy held a strong early advantage.

The visitors came back very well in the second half with some good scores, but the locals were able to hold on for a 3-18 to 1-21 victory. Conahy next travel away to Glenmore on Friday night at 7.00 p.m.


Conahy Shamrocks Camogie Club will hold a clothes recycling collection fundraiser over the coming days. Bags can be dropped into the Polo Grounds on Saturday (June 8th), Sunday (June 9th) and Monday (June 10th) for collection on Tuesday, June 11th. Unsoiled clothes, pairs of shoes, handbags, curtains and unsoiled bed linen will all be gratefully received. Any support would be welcome.


The numbers drawn in the most recent GAA Club Lotto were 4, 12 and 37. There was no jackpot winner, so the consolation prize winners were Gemma Dowling, Linda Walsh, Ethna Healy, Michelle Cahill and OJ and Saoirse Le Roux. The promoter prize winners were Shay Healy, John McGrath and Peter Mulhall. Many thanks to everyone who supports the GAA Club Lotto.


A local pilgrimage to Knock Shrine will take place on Saturday, June 22nd. A bus will leave Freshford at 7.30 a.m., then leaving from Jackman’s in Jenkinstown at 8.00 a.m. and finally Ballyragget at 8.15 a.m. Names as soon as possible to (056) 7767676 or (086) 3655418. The cost of the bus fare is €30.



The death of Mary Harrison of Clonard, Ballycallan has caused widespread sadness throughout our parish. Mary was born in Ballycallan and spent her childhood and youth there. On her marriage to Nicholas Harrison she lived for many years in Clonard. Of a gentle and quiet nature, Mary’s first priority was her love and attention to Nick and her children. She loved to visit the residents whom she knew, in hospital and nursing homes. She herself and her friends had treats for all these people. It certainly brought joy to the recipients and donors. When celebrations and fundraising events took place in Ballycallan Hall, Mary was always there to help. A loyal member of the P.A.L. club she always looked forward to the day when the meetings were held. She was a devoted member of the church in the parish and every Sunday she attended mass in St. Brigid’s Church. Mary seldom or ever missed the annual parish pilgrimage to Knock. She also loved the evenings of prayer which were held in Peace in Christ house of prayer in Kilkenny. During her life Mary suffered two very sad bereavements, the untimely death of her husband Nick and then her son Paul who died following a farm accident. Her strong faith gave her peace and encouragement in the face of so much loss and sadness. Many people attended her house where she lay in repose and the same is to be said for the attendance at her requiem mass in St. Brigid’s Church, Ballycallan. The choir sang beautiful and appropriate hymns and music which added to the solemnity of the mass. Her son, Brian spoke glowingly of his mother in his eulogy. Her burial took

place in St. Marys cemetery in Ballykeeffe. Our parish community express our sympathy to her daughters Mary, Catherine and Geraldine, sons Jim, Brian, Nicky, Bill and John, brother Billy Butler, daughters in law, sons in law, grandchildren, nieces and nephews and many friends. Mary, may your soul rest in the peace of the risen Lord. ANNUAL CEMETERY MASS

St. Mary’s cemetery, Ballykeeffe was the perfect setting for the annual parish cemetery mass. The attendance, which undoubtedly is increasing from year to year, had one thing in common and that was supplications and prayers for loved ones who are now in eternal life. Fr. Liam Taylor, P.P. and Fr. Peter Muldowney, St. Patrick’s concelebrated the mass. Fr. Liam’s homily was very appropriate and edifying. Two decades of the rosary were said for the souls of all who are interred in the cemetery with the inclusions of those who are interred in the other five cemeteries of the parish. Many parish eucharistic ministers distributed holy communion to the large attendance. Thanks to our parish choir, under the direction of Anne Ging, who sang beautifully. The hymns which were appropriate greatly enhanced the solemnity of the celebration. The readings were read by Pamela McCluskey and Vivienne Ryan while Anne Murphy read a beautiful communion reflection. At the end of the celebration Fr. Liam thanked Fr. Peter for being with him, he also thanked the attendance especially those who came from outside the parish. Before the singing of the last hymn Fr. Liam and Fr. Peter were thanked for celebrating with us and for the souls of our loved ones. The choir, Sean Doherty for the amplification, Kilkenny County Council and all who keep the cemetery in pristine condition, the eucharistic ministers and finally Our Lord and Our Lady for giving us the opportunity to be there and for the blessing of a beautiful evening. Thanks to all who took part in the Mass, our choir, readers, sacristans. Eucharistic ministers and collectors. A special word of thanks to the stewards who helped to keep traffic organised and the road clear. We are grateful to you for your efforts. Thanks to all who contributed to the gate collection. The total donated was €2,020. This money will be used in the upkeep of our cemeteries. A reminder, if you brought wreaths and flowers for the pattern, please remember to take them home with you once they are finished with. There are no dumping facilities in the cemetery.


The first Holy Communion in the parish was held in Our Lady Queen of Peace Church, Kilmanagh on 25th May. The recipients of first holy communion in our parish this year were Aiden Bruton, Jamie Coogan, Jasmine Davis, Jack Delaney, Freya Drohan, Mia Dunne, Dylan Hall, Cian Hoyne, Isabelle Hoyne, Rebecca Menton, Ella-Mai Murphy, Zach Murphy, Caoimhe O’Dea, Katie Quirke and Cara Robinson. We would like to thank their parents and teachers for all their help with this sacrament.


The annual scrap metal collection in support of Naomh Aodhan Community Centre will take place on Saturday 13th and Sunday 14th July. Full details next week.


Naomh Aodhan Community Centre is available to hire for meetings, social occasions etc. to check for time and date availability contact Naomh Aodhan on 083 341 3024.


Best of luck to all who will be sitting exams this month, especially leaving cert and junior cert. May all the hard work you’ve put into studying and preparing now pay off. Tuesday morning’s Mass in Kilmanagh will be offered for the intentions of all our students sitting exams. A lighted candle will be placed in our three churches throughout the exam time, remembering your intentions.


Friday June 14th – Chapterhouse Theatre presents Pride and Prejudice. Saturday July 13th – Chasing Abbey. Saturday July 20th – Amble. Saturday August 10th –Mack Fleetwood. Saturday August 24th – Harvest Moon. Saturday August 31st – Paul Brady. For full details of all events check out


Well done to the Ballycallan Fife and Drum Band who provided on-pitch, pre-match entertainment at the Under 20 Hurling All Ireland in Nowlan Park last Saturday.


Results for 27/05/24. Numbers drawn were 5; 7; 22; 30. There was no winner. Lucky Dip Winners of €50 each were James Murphy, Cappahayden; Lar McGrath and Maureen Cunningham. Sellers prizes went to Pat Robinson and Niall Egan. Jackpot next week will be €20,000 with reserve jackpot of €6,600. Next draw will take place on 3rd June at 9 pm.


Anyone wishing to submit news items, events, announcements etc. can do so by email only to If you have any photos that you would like included, please send as an attachment.


Councillor Michael Delaney would like to thank everyone throughout North Kilkenny for their support and confidence in him over the past five years. “I would like to thank my family, my team and most of all the public for their confidence in me to deliver on their behalf. I have worked hard to deliver over that period, and I believe that the fruits of that work can be seen in your communities.” However, Michael’s work is not finished. On June 7th Michael will be seeking your support again for the Castlecomer Electoral Area. “I am seeking re-election because I want to continue working on behalf of the people, communities, businesses and farmers throughout North Kilkenny and to make a positive difference as your local public representative.” He has further pledged that he will work alongside Deputy John McGuinness to help the marginalised and those who feel left behind. In order to enable strong representation on your behalf at local level, Micheal is asking you to vote No 1 Michael Delaney on June 7th.



Hugginstown: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday at 9.30a.m. Vigil – Saturday 8th. at 8.00p.m. Sunday 9th. at 10.00a.m. Stoneyford, Wednesday 5th. at 7.00p.m. Vigil, Saturday 8th. at 6.30p.m. Friday 7th. Feast of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus. Saturday 8th. Feast of the Immaculate Heart of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

Friday 7th. First Friday, Visitation with Holy Communion took place this month on Thursday 6th. June. Please let us know if you would like to receive Holy Communion in your home for the First Fridays or at any other time. ROTA

Rota for next week-end: 8th. and 9th. June 2024. (Tenth Sunday in Ordinary Time)

Readers, Stoneyford, Saturday 6.30p.m. Rita O’Farrell, Hugginstown: Saturday 8.00p.m. Deirdre Rohan, Sunday 10.00a.m. Deirdre O’Shea

Eucharistic Ministers. Stoneyford, Saturday 6.30p.m. Barbara Smolen, Hugginstown: Saturday 8.00p.m. Mary Cuddihy; Sunday 10.00a.m Lillian Carr. New Rota is available for Readers and Eucharistic Ministers in Hugginstown Church. Please collect in Hugginstown Sacristy


Diocesan Designated Liaison Person, Ms. Ailish Higgins Tel: 087 100 0232.

Aghaviller Parish Representatives are, Deirdre Rohan and Catherina Roche.


Aghaviller Parish and Carrickshock G. A. A. Draw: Monday 27th. May 2024. Numbers: 06; 01; 03; 12. One Winner First 3 Numbers Drawn, No Jackpot Winner: €500.00. Winner, Rose Kelly, Ennisnag. €25.00 Seller of Ticket, Jimmy Sheehan. 3 x €15.00 (Sellers) Eamon Irish, Ann Power, Walter Broderick.


Calvary Cemetery: Mass on Friday 21st. June at 8.00p.m.

Hugginstown Cemetery: Mass on Saturday 13th. July at 8.00p.m.

Stoneyford Cemetery: Mass on Friday 2nd. August at 8.00p.m.

Other Cemetery Masses will be arranged by the local communities and dates will be given as soon as possible.


Trip to Knock on 13th. July in honour of Feast Day of Our Lady of Mount Carmel. Staying overnight in Knock House Hotel. For further information please contact Frank Aylward on 086 812 8705


Are you Considering a Postgraduate study programme? Check out the options in Theology, Philosophy, Youth Ministry, Chaplaincy, Church Music and more at St Patrick’s Pontifical University, Maynooth, Applications close soon.


The Senior Alert Scheme is run through Pobal and is funded by the Department of Rural and Community Development. This is available to anyone who is over 65 and residing in Hugginstown, Newmarket and the surrounding area. If you would like to avail of the Senior Alerts Scheme and obtain a personal alarm / pendantplease contact Billy Brenner on 087 272 8876 or Cleeve Cuddihy 086 063 8450 for further information. Their role is to help anyone who is eligible to access the Senior Alert Scheme and to act on their behalf and deal with Pobal and the supplier. An alarm and a pendant plus the first year’s monitoring charge are provided under the scheme.

49 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024 Community & GAA Notes We welcome all GAA Club and Community notes for publication in The Kilkenny Observer email to

Hurlng matters - Preview


2024 Leinster Senior Hurling Championship Final

Kilkenny vs Dublin Croke Park, Saturday June 8th, Throw-in 6pm

It may not be the pairing that many expected, but tomorrow evening Kilkenny will face-off against Dublin in the battle to be crowned 2024 Leinster Senior Hurling Champions in Croke Park (Throw-in 6pm). Most hurling fans would be forgiven for thinking it was likely to be Henry’s Tribesmen vs Derek’s Cats, but this year’s format along with the results in the group means that there will be no meeting of one of our greatest and his native county.

For the Noresiders to continue their love affair with Bob O’Keefe, they will need to be at their best to get the better of a Dublin side that has shown already this season that they are a force to be reckoned with on the provincial stage. Indeed, the group stage fixture was an exciting affair in Parnell Park that saw Derek Lyng’s charges emerge with a hard-fought 2-point win, and in truth, this game could have gone either way.

The final table in Leinster saw Kilkenny finish just one point ahead of tomorrow’s opponents and while the Cats were the only unbeaten side in the province, there wasn’t too much between the teams in terms of points scored and conceded. The black and amber scored one point more and shipped five less than Micheál Donoghue’s outfit over the course of the five games, and as we alluded to earlier, the meeting in May highlighted the great work that is being done in the Capital with the small ball. The Clarinbridge clubman has a couple of provincial titles to his name, with his native Galway including the 2018 championship, where they got the better of Kilkenny after a replay.

While the Cats are going in search of title number 76, Dublin will be hoping to end a long spell without the provincial title, their last coming in 2013 under the stewardship of Anthony Daly when the Metropolitans defeated a Joe Canning inspired Galway by an impressive twelve points to lift the Bob O’Keefe Cup for the first time in 52 years. The likes of Danny Sutcliffe is still doing the business in 2024 and was in decent form during the Parnell Park encounter.

The men from the capital began their group campaign with a thrilling draw with Keith Rossiter’s Wexford. Trailing by some 5-points as the game entered injury time, a late, late brace of goals from Sutcliffe and Cian O’Sullivan saw them rescue a point at Chadwick’s Wexford Park. Donal Burke was reliable as ever, finishing his days work with 0-7. Next up for Micheál Donoghue’s side was a trip to Netwatch Cullen Park to take on Carlow. This road trip proved more

Cats & Dubs set for Croker cracker!

fruitful as the Dubs emerged with a five-point win and maximum points, thanks to a goal from second half substitute Fergal Whitley. Again, Donal Burke led the way in the scoring charts, notching 0-9 in the away win.

A much more routine home win against Antrim in Parnell Park followed, a twenty-point victory and an impressive tally of 1-11 for Na Fianna’s Donal Burke. Kilkenny knows that any in-discipline will be punished by Burke who is to Dublin what TJ is to the Cats. Sean Currie and Conor Burke hit 0-10 between them and caused the Saffrons defence many problems that day. Having then welcomed Kilkenny to the same venue and ran them very

close, the boys in blue headed west to take on Henry’s Galway on the final day of group fixtures in Salthill. A magnificent 6-point win for Dublin ensured that they would contest this year’s decider and set up another cracker with the men from the Marble City. Again, Donal Burke top scored with 1-10, while Sean Currie also raised a green flag and there was a positive contribution from Chris Crummey, who notched 0-4. The experienced heads including Donal Burke, Chris Crummey, Danny Sutcliffe and Fergal Whitley will know that this title is very much on the line, and they will not fear the stripes of Kilkenny tomorrow

50 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024
Provincial bragging rights on the line in Saturday showdown
John Donnelly will look to continue his good form

evening in headquarters. Dublin displayed some lovely hurling when they welcomed the Cats in the group stage, and Conor Burke’s goal showed the type of game this side are trying to craft.

Micheál Donoghue has instilled a level of resilience in this panel of players, and they will keep going to the long whistle. Alongside the never say die attitude this group is both a skillful and powerful unit, and as mentioned, in Donal Burke they have a player that can keep the scoreboard ticking over,

Kilkenny manager Derek Lyng will know that his side will need to put in a 70 + minute performance to ensure that they retain their provincial title. The Cats cannot afford a performance like they had against Carlow tomorrow evening. Repeat this and Dublin will be licking their lips. The warnings have been there, and captain Paddy Deegan will need to have his troops on their toes and ready for battle in Croker. It would be a huge boost for the Noresiders if Adrian Mullen lines out from the start in the decider. The Shamrocks Ballyhale man adds so much to his team and brings a serious level of dynamism all over the pitch, something that we will need at the Jones’s Road venue.

The attacking threats of Eoin Cody, TJ Reid and Mossy Keoghan will love the wide-open spaces in headquarters. Tullaroan’s Keoghan has been in cracking form of late and has looked really dangerous in games, taking on his man at every opportunity. TJ’s free taking aside, Mossy and Thomastown’s John Donnelly have been the players that have been troubling the scoreboard for the black and amber. In the group game, Donnelly put in a POTM performance notching 0-7 from play, while Mossy hit 0-3. Along with his vital goal, Eoin Cody also hit 0-3 and will look to revel again on the big stage tomorrow evening.

Billy Ryan’s cameo against Wexford reminded everyone that he has plenty to offer this Kilkenny side.

The likes of Owen Wall and Tom Phelan will also hope for minutes in the final and both players are more than capable of providing telling contributions either from the start, or from the bench. David Blanchfield continues to put in eye-catching performances from wing-back and is another vital scoring weapon for Lyng’s men. The towering Bennettsbridge man has also taken some great catches and winning aerial duels in the final will be crucial as the Cats seek to dominate their opponents.

midfield pairing will again be interesting. Will it be Cian Kenny and Paddy Deegan? Quite possibly. Should this be the case, Richie Reid will most likely find himself in the ‘6’ position, sweeping and reading the play with huge game intelligence.

Young Ireland’s Mikey Carey appears to be shifting through the gears and looks very much settled in the half back division. With the settled trio of Huw Lawlor, Mikey Butler and

and with the returning

and Adrian

51 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024
Hurling matters -
The Tommy Walsh behind Carey, Reid and Blanchfield, these lines are a huge strength to this Kilkenny side. It promises to be a real battle in Croke Park tomorrow evening and both sides’ benches could prove to be key in the decider. Kilkenny’s strength in depth here may be the difference, Walter Walsh Mullen primed, Bob might just be back in the Marble City tomorrow night. Defending LeinsterDerek Lyng hoping to claim provincial crown Captains in race to Leinster crown! Paddy Deegan & Eoghan O Donnell TJ Reid - leader & placed ball maestro

Planning notices

Planning notices


Take notice that I intend to apply to Kilkenny County Council for planning permission to retain the 0.73 m 2 ground floor extension, 22.34 m 2 first floor extension and 21.61 m 2 services platform at the second floor level, and a permission to redesign the front elevation and all associated site works on lands at Main Street, Gowran, Co. 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 beconsidered 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.

Signed: Colm Lawlor


We, Dawn Meats Ireland UC, intend to apply to Kilkenny County Council for Planning Permission and Retention Permission for extensions and alterations to the existing office building at Grannagh, Co.Kilkenny, X91 HRR3. The development will consist of:

- The relocation of the existing main entrance to the south west elevation, including a new wheelchair access ramp, access steps, planters, new entrance porch, the relocation of existing turnstiles, new security fencing, first floor corner window, alterations to south west and south east elevations consisting of new roof parapet to extend above the existing eaves level and new render finish.

- Application includes retention permission for the existing two-storey office extension located on the north west facing elevation of the main office building.

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.

52 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024


In loving memory of Phil, late of 66 Old Newpark, Kilkenny whose anniversary occurs at this time.

That man is a successwho leaves the world better than he found it; who has never lacked appreciation of earth’s beauty or failed to express it; who looked for the best in others and gave the best he had.

Always loved, never forgotten, You are but a breath away. Mary, Colin, John and family.

Anniversary Mass on Wednesday 12th June at 9.30am in St. Canice’s Church, Kilkenny.


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. A.B.

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. M.D.


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. D.C.

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. M.M.

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. S.B.

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. M.E.


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. J.M.

53 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024 Memoriams / Miracle Prayers
54 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024 Motors Classifieds Classified section To advertise your business in our classified section call in or telephone: 056 777 1463, or email: accounts 087 2587745
55 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024 Motors Classifieds
56 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 7th June 2024 Advertisement

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