Kilkenny Observer 14th June 2024

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Friday 14th June 2024 Observer The Kilkenny EVERY FRIDAY Tel: 056 777 1463 E: W: FREE EDITION Cats Kings of Leinster AGAIN! Lyng's men continue quest for Liam as Bob returns to Noreside for a 76th time Senior Hurling Final See Page 5 Father's Day Magic Show at Market Cross Shopping Centre FREE See Pages 50-51  
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Results polls apart

FF and FG win through while Sinn Féin and Greens take a beating

The result of the local elections nationwide bucked the predicaments of all the political polls since January, with Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael doing very well, Sinn Féin down to 12% from 26% in 2020, the Greens suffering and the Independents doing well, with seats gained in Dublin by those with an antimigrant stance.

The biggest shock was the fall in support for Sinn Féin . For Kilkenny County Council Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael continue to dominate, with FF taking 11 seats and FG seven. With 24 seats available, Fianna Fáil took 11 followed by Fine Gael (seven), Labour (two) and Independents (two), with the Green Party and Sinn Féin each

Kilkenny’s Gail outstanding in her field ...

Kilkenny has a double finalist in this year’s second National Dairy Awards recognising the quality and talents of the country’s dairy farmers. The National Dairy Awards recognise and celebrate those who have embraced these challenges and are driving the sector on to a brighter and sustainable future.

The Kilkenny finalist is Gail Daniels [pictured], cited for Best Artisan Dairy Product (non-cheese) 2024 and for Ifac Best Dairy Product Innovation.

Bó Bar Soap is a natural artisan handmade soap using milk from Ms Daniels’ family-run dairy farm as a 100% water replacement. Originally started as a chemical free way to treat her daughter’s eczema it soon became a passion that escalated to a business after receiving amazing feedback from friends and family.

having one councillor elected.

Long standing Fine Gael Councillor Martin Brett lost his seat in the Kilkenny electoral area.

In Castlecomer, his party colleague Mary Hilda Cavanagh was returned and will continue to build on her 50 years of unbroken political service.

Elsewhere, the Fianna Fáil’s Andrew McGuinness, a son of TD John, topped the poll in the Kilkenny LEA again. Eugene McGuinness, who ran as an Independent, was also elected.

Sinn Féin ran eight candidates but saw only one elected, Stephanie Doheny in Callan-Thomastown. Labour’s Seán Ó hArgáin was

elected in Kilkenny city and Independent Maurice Shortall took a seat in Castlecomer.

The main issues were immigration, the fear of unvetted people coming to live in the area and misinformation.

Housing was also a huge problem, not just with people being on the social housing list, but people not being

European Parliament count continues

At the time of going to press, the European election results are still coming in from across Ireland and Europe.

In Ireland South Incumbent Sean Kelly (FG) was the first MEP elected. Cynthia Ní Mhurchú (FF) could win a second seat, alongside Billy Kelleher. Michael McNamara (Ind), Grace O’Sullivan (GP) and Mick Wallace (Ind) and Kathleen Funchion (SF) are in the mix as counts go on.

O’Sullivan, though, looks likely to lose out.

In Dublin, Fianna Fáil MEP Barry Andrews, Fine Gael candidate Regina Doherty, Sinn Féin candidate and past MEP Lynn Boylan as well as Labour’s Aodhán Ó Ríordáin were elected following the 19th count with Independent Ireland candidate Niall Boylan being eliminated.

Clare Daly has lost her seat. In the Midlands-North-

West, Sinn Féin has said it will lose its seat in the constituency. Sitting MEPs Luke Ming Flanagan (Ind) and Maria Walsh (FG) look likely to keep their seats with Barry Cowen (FF) and Nina Carberry (FG) polling strongly as is Ciaran Mullooly. Sinn Féin are at risk of losing their seat in Brussels. Throughout Europe, the far right and populist right have done well, but it is more of a continuing trend than a surge.

The centre right European People’s Party (EPP) has increased its vote, the centreleft Socialists and Democrats (S&D) have held up their percentages despite some losses, while the liberal Renew group have suffered a loss of around 20 seats.

The big political impacts have been in France and Germany: Emmanuel Macron has dissolved the National Assembly and called legislative elec-

tions in the face of the big far right National Rally win, while Chancellor Olaf Scholz is under pressure in Germany after he was beaten into third place by the far right AfD.

The Greens have lost around 20 seats.

The AfD will have a projected 58 seats, while the populist right European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR) will get 73 seats.

Analysis Page 14

able to afford to build their own home.

The Social Democrats and Aontu made gains across the country, as did Independent Ireland and Non-Party candidates of a variety of political leanings.

The far right National Party and Irish Freedom Party secured their first seats at local level.

Elected women fail to break barrier

The National Women’s Council (NWC) has welcomed the women elected as Councillors in the Local Elections but is very disappointed about the missed opportunity to break the critical barrier of 40% for women’s representation in Local Government. NWC called on all political parties to commit to the introduction of a 40% gender quota for local election candidates in their party manifestos.

A bumper May for hospitality

Restaurant spend in Kilkenny is up 9% in the month, the biggest increase in the country. Clothing spend is up 8% as people get ready for summer but airline and electronic spend down compared to increases in May 2023

According to AIB Almost €297m was spent in pubs, restaurants and hotels by customers using their cards last month, up 9% on May 2023.

Plan ahead for holiday


Aer Lingus pilots have voted in favour of industrial action. They are seeking wage hikes of 24% after rejecting 9% brokered at the Labour Court. The Irish Airline Pilots’ Association (IALPA) says 97.7% of the ballots returned were in favour of action including strike. A strike would see significant disruption to customers and travel.

3 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th 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:

Summer comes to Mount Juliet Estate ...

Always elevating the guest experience, the award-winning, five-star Mount Juliet Estate has introduced new estate experiences for guests to enjoy this summer.

A two-day visit to Mount Juliet Estate nestled in the Kilkenny countryside, where a sumptuous bedroom in the Manor House awaits, accompanied by champagne and a Michelin star-awarded dinner in The Lady Helen. The expansive

estate is ready to be explored on foot or on the Mount Juliet Estate bicycles, with golf on the Jack Nicklaus Signature Design Golf course an option, coupled with access to the state-ofthe-art Mount Juliet Estate academy and driving range. A delicious á la carte breakfast is served each morning overlooking the River Nore.

Ireland Hops Ireland Hops curate bespoke

excursions visiting the very best of Ireland’s food and drink producers nationwide, for a memorable outing and novel way to explore Ireland. In collaboration with Mount Juliet Estate, guests can choose from a series of ‘Kilkenny Hops’ tours that will take in the local craft makers, artisan food producers, historic sites, and areas of beauty for enjoyable excursions departing from Mount Juliet


The tours start at €100 for groups of four or more.

Laser Clay Pigeon Shooting

Guests can take on the challenge of this popular and environmentally friendly sport which starts at €35 a person.

The Manor House A summer getaway for two people for two nights starts

at €495 a room a night and includes:

• Two nights’ luxurious accommodation for two people with Chromecast in your room.

• Eight course tasting menu at the Michelin-star Lady Helen restaurant.

• A delicious á la carte breakfast each day.

• Access to the health club, swimming pool, boutique cinema, tennis courts and

rackets, and use of courtesy hotel bicycles.

Hunter’s Yard Hotel

Overlooking the beautifully manicured Jack Nicklaus Signature Design golf course, Hunter’s Yard Hotel is offering a two-night, summer family getaway from €480 a night for two adults and two children under 12.

• Two nights’ luxurious accommodation for two adults and two children with Chromecast in-room.

• Dinner on one evening for two adults in The Hound Restaurant

• Daily access to Mount Juliet Juniors Club for children aged five-12 years, with supervised lunch and dinner.

• Access to the health club, swimming pool, playground, tennis courts and rackets, fairy garden and use of courtesy hotel bicycles.

• A delicious á la carte breakfast each day.

Golf Birdie Golf Getaway

Put golf skills to the test on the Jack Nicklaus Signature Design championship golf course. Newly packaged for group or for individual experiences, our PGA professionals can provide guidance and an enjoyable experience, from the Academy to the driving range and course. After your round of golf enjoy awardwinning dining and a luxurious stay in either The Manor House or Hunter’s Yard Hotels. From €265 a person sharing.

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Cooking up a treat: chef John Kelly at the Lady Helen
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Pitiful plight of our carers

Almost three-quarters of carers (72%) have never received respite, according to a survey highlighting the realities they face.

In its State Of Caring 2024 report, Family Carers Ireland (FCI) found that almost half (48%) of family carers experienced severe loneliness, despite the majority of respondents living with the people for whom they care.

Family carers provide more

than €20bn worth of unpaid care to ill, elderly, and/or disabled individuals every year. Since 2016, the number of people providing informal care in Ireland has increased by 50%.

The FCI survey, completed by 2,127 family carers between January and March this year, highlights the crushing impact of systemic neglect, financial strain, and a deepening housing crisis.

Irish SMEs ‘must plan now’ to maximise trading with eCommerce

A full year’s data from the An Post eCommerce Index reveals that convenience (72%) is the key driver for online purchases and 40% of all online ordering is through retailer social media or marketplace websites and apps.

An Post is making detailed findings from the eCommerce Index research available to Irish SMEs in a new resource to help them adapt to changing customer expectation and multi-channel purchase patterns.

The Get Ready for Peak Guide outlines where and how consumers are spending online, their propensity to support Irish businesses and how purchase types vary depending on seasonality. In addition, An Post has established a dedicated email service for new and existing SME customers with eCommerce queries answered by a dedicated expert. Contact experts@ for further information.    Irish SMEs must be mindful of their ecommerce strategies because while 95% of Irish adults have shopped online in the past year, global players are setting eCommerce expectations on convenience and customer experience. 58% said they would make more online purchases if guaranteed delivery dates were available.

The research shows the opportunity that exists for Irish SMEs to maximise their eCommerce offering during the main selling window from October to December.  52% stated they would prefer to support Irish businesses during this period and 32% did not want to pay import charges on products coming from outside Ireland. 56% made purchases around Black Friday and the Christmas period based on an online offer or with a retailer discount code.  Garrett Bridgeman, Managing Director, COO, An Post

The percentage surveyed who had never accessed respite care rose from 66% in 2022 to 72% this year.

Two years on from its previous report, FCI found “this worrying increase underscores the health system’s failure to meet family carers’ basic needs”.

The survey uncovers the realities family carers face in securing stable and appropriate housing necessary for

effective caring, with almost one in five (17%) of mortgage holders having missed a mortgage payment in the past year. More than one-third of those in private rental (35%) and those in local authority housing (32%) have missed a payment in the past year.

The survey also showed that 69% of carers found it difficult to make ends meet. More than a quarter (29%) of those struggling financially had cut back

on essentials such as food and heat to make ends meet.

A third of family carers reside in homes that are not suitably adapted, lacking essential accessibility features such as ramps and bars.

The charity said that the situation was exacerbated by the inadequacy of the Housing Adaptation Grant, which has not been increased in over a decade, forcing many to rely on family and friends, personal

loans, or community help.

“This survey reveals a harrowing truth. Family carers are being pushed to the brink,” said Catherine Cox, head of communications and policy at FCI. Ms Cox called for immediate action to relieve the burdens experienced by family carers across Ireland. These include the abolition of the means test for Carer’s Allowance and increasing the Housing Adaptation Grant.

Commerce, said: “We appreciate the challenges that SMEs and business owners face when it comes to getting their hands on relevant market research and insights. The An Post eCommerce Index is full of the most up-to-date insights into Irish consumer behaviour online – from the growth in popularity of certain categories, the frequency at which consumers of all ages are shopping online to the channels they are using to purchase. We’ve packaged this intelligence into a convenient guide for businesses preparing eCommerce strategies for Christmas 2024”.

“Irish SMEs can capitalise on the strong consumer preference for supporting Irish businesses and by understanding the importance of convenience to shoppers of all ages. Range and choice, great deals and recommendations are also among the key considerations for shoppers so even something as simple as an exclusive online deal or discount code can generate a big upturn in sales.

With 60% of Irish shoppers online using retailer websites and 40% of all online ordering now going through retailer social media and market place websites and apps, a focus on these channels will increase eCommerce footprint and drive sales.  Clarity around delivery times and standard are also key.   We have seen a huge increase in parcel volumes over the last four years and they continue to rise so  for any business whose focus has not been on eCommerce to date, now is the time to give it strong consideration as you prepare for key sales windows in just a few months.”

* An Post’s Get Ready for Peak Guide is available to view and download from www.anpost. com/ecommerceindex

Saturday July 6 and the only place to be in Kilkenny is at Erin’s Own GAA Club in Castlecomer. Among the line-up are Kiera Dignam, Paddy Casey, Ryan Sheridan and Eimhéar Ní Ghlacaín,. With a growing fan base Eimhéar Ní Ghlacaín, has become one of the most popular artists on the Irish rebel scene. Her passionate and heartfelt renditions of our favourite ballads has

earned her the title “Queen of Irish Rebel “ , as she continues to draw crowds and sell out concerts across the globe

Now an annual highlight in the South East, the critically acclaimed Kilkenny Outdoor Music Festival returns with a fantastic line-up.

The organisers of the Kilkenny Outdoor Music Festival have brought together a selection of Ire-

land’s top live acts for what promises to be a phenomenal night. With a superb and scenic location just outside Castlecomer town, shuttle bus will be available from Kilkenny and Castlecomer to ferry festivalgoers to the venue. Don’t be disappointed in Castlecomer as admission is by ticket only. Tickets at €35 are available from Ticketmaster. With hours of outstand-

ing music for only €35, Erin’s Own GAA Club look forward to welcoming you on the night.

Please visit https://www. for more information and make the Kilkenny Outdoor Festival the highlight of your summer. See also https://www.universe. com/events/kilkenny-outdoor-music-festival-tickets-5LFCG7?ref=universediscover.

Slump in milk production costs us €370m.

The slump in milk production so far this year has cost the rural economy an estimated €370m.

It comes as the CSO last week reported another fall in April milk production, down 81 million litres (-7.9%) when compared with April 2023 and down 107.6 million litres (-10.2%) when compared with the same month in 2022.

It means, for the period January to April 2024, the Milk Intake by co-ops and processors is now at 2,204.6 million litres, a decline of 186.3

million litres (-7.8%). Dairy Industry Ireland (DII) has estimated that this equates to a direct loss of milk sales by dairy farmers this year of €75-85m.

However, speaking to the Farming Independent, DII director Conor Mulvihill warned the loss to rural Ireland is much greater, highlighting what he described as the ‘multiplier effect’ of the dairy industry in rural areas. He said that based on EY research conducted by the industry, this year’s lost produc-

tion has taken some €370m from the rural economy.

“This money has not been taken from cities, it is coming out of rural Ireland,” he said.

“We are talking about a loss the equivalent of three Páirc Uí Chaoimh in just four months, and this is on the back of an over 4pc loss in milk supply last year as well.”

Meanwhile, IFA dairy chair

Stephen Arthur called on milk processors to increase the price paid to their dairy farmers to compensate for the lost supplies.

“Milk volumes continue to lag well behind 2023 levels which means reduced sales for dairy farmers,” he said.

“Together with the increased cost of production from the very difficult spring, dairy farmers need to be paid for their product.”

He also said markets were improving, with the GDT this week showing an improvement of 1.7% on the last trade two weeks ago. Butter was trading at almost €7,000 per tonne, up 1.7% and skim up 3% at €2,722 per tonne.

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Castlecomer the place be for music fest
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The Fact Of The Matter

Paul Hopkins

Old Ned, Grandpa Jones, and Bono’s dad Bob

I have but one memory of my grandfather, Old Ned Hopkins, and he sitting at his dining table having eaten a hearty Sunday dinner and being fussed upon by two doting daughters who never married b ut stayed home to mind their ageing parents – as was the case a lot in those days. And he’s wearing his stock-in-trade civil servant’s garb of waistcoat and pocket watch and I am enthralled by the ash falling down by the gold piece as he puffs away to his heart’s content. That’s the only memory. A sharp pain while waiting on the bus put paid to his 66 years and he was gone. So I never knew Old Ned but my father, in my formative years, used to say t o me: “You’re very like your grandad.” I couldn’t see it and I used to think he was just saying that to

appease himself because he was missing his dad.

(News of my grandfather’s death was the only time ever I saw my father cry).

I thought no more of this oft-remarked-about resemblance until one night, many years later, I was brushing my teeth and I looked up into the bathroom mirror and there he was staring back at me. Old Ned. It was eerie. And it is an image that has stayed with me.

Nowadays, though, and reflecting on Father’s Day and still missing my own father 24 years after his death – for there was so much more I wanted to say – I see more and more my dad, not Ned, in myself each day. It’s an age thing, perhaps, though those who know tell me I share his traits of charm and empathy and needless worry over life’s

unimportant things (I’ve kicked that one, believe me) and the endless quest for the meaning of it all. (Well, that’s what they say, anyway).

There is also the similarity in how I relate as a d ad to my own children. The positives and, hands up, the negatives. Even though the three are now full-grown and paid-up members of their society, no matter what age they are, aren’t they always your ‘kids’? When I was in my 40s and rearing them and my parents would come for Sunday lunch and my father and I would slip away for a pint, he would say to me: “You know your mother and I still miss you kids.” And I would think to myself, Get over it. (Now, I know exactly what he meant back then.)

And so the son becomes

the man and the genes move down the line for increasingly I see a lot of my dad in my youngest son. He has his look, the twinkle in the eye, and the charm, the quick-to-anger and the obsessiveness and the keep-fit fanaticism

“Enthralled by the ash falling down by the gold piece as he puffs away...

(that’s one that skipped a generation) and a great love of eclectic music. Why should I be surprised, when inheriting o ur emotional and physical make-up, foibles and all, is the n atural order of things, the way of all flesh. A chip off the old block, the spittin’ image, you’ll never be dead while your son, your daughter, is alive, are all familiar expressions that give testament to this, well, rather ob vious fact of life.

Perhaps that’s why as teenagers we rebel against our parents for we, if only subconsciously, see some of them in our developing selves – the bits we are in tolerant and dismissive of when mere learners of life. It’s as Bono sang of his own father Bob: “I don’t need, I don’t need to hear you say that if we weren’t so alike you’d like me a

whole lot more.”

I remember as a young lad holidaying with my aunt and uncle on their farm in North Wales and my cousin was just a month old. A party was held to welcome him into the world, his grandfather still alive. And so Old Gr andpa Jones was in the big kitchen by the old Aga and he rocking his first grandson back and forth.

“Aroo,” said a neighbour looking down at the gurgling child, “but ain’t he the im age of Grandpa Jones.” After about a dozen or so had remarked on this family resemblance, my aunt, somewhat incensed, said: “How can you say that a month-old child is like an 87-year- old man?” And they said, collectively: “Well, he got no h air, he got no teeth, and he got that silly grin on his face ...”

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New sponsor for this year's Dublin RDS Horse Show

The RDS has welcomed Mervue Equine as the sponsor of the innovative Broodmare Futurity class at this year’s Dublin Horse Show, which takes place from Wednesday, August 14 to Sunday inclusive.  The class, which was first introduced in 2010, centres on the identification of potential highcalibre mares from the three,

four, five and six year old national show jumping classes.    The class seeks to highlight and promote the best young mares in the country, based on their breeding and performance, so that Ireland may once again enjoy success of the top echelons of the sport of show jumping, and re-establish a strong sport horse breeding industry.  These

Expert warns auto-enrolment will not solve pension issues

As Ireland prepares to implement its new system of pension auto-enrolment in 2025, financial expert Dan Malone, from the National Pension Helpline, warns that this initiative alone will not necessarily address the multitude of pension problems currently facing the nation.

“There are a number of complex problems to be solved,” said Mr Malone, referring to both Ireland’s ‘fragile’ State pension system and the inadequacy of private pension pots held by individuals as but two of the core issues at play.

Ireland, like many European countries, is faced with an ageing population. The number of individuals aged 65 and over is set to double by 2050, without a corresponding increase in the number of workers. This, said Mr Malone, would put considerable strain on Ireland’s social insurance fund, which was responsible for paying out State pension payments to retirees.

Furthermore, analysis of private pensions in Ireland suggested that some 90% of workers were not on track for a financially comfortable retirement.

“So what you have is a system that is weak on both the State pension side and the private pension side,” he told The Kilkenny Observer.

Auto-enrolment, which essentially turns pensions into an ‘opt-out’ rather than ‘opt-in’ decision, would only solve the problem of ‘pension coverage’, he said.

“The Government will be able to say that they increased the number of people with private pensions from 68% to close to 100% but, in reality, auto-enrol-

ment will do very little, at least at the beginning, in the way of ensuring that people have sufficiently sized pensions to support a comfortable lifestyle in retirement.”

Mr Malone suggested that simply having a private pension was one thing, but having enough money in that private pension was another thing altogether.

Ireland’s scheme of pension auto-enrolment seeks to improve retirement savings for workers aged 23 to 60 who are currently outside the private pension system. By automatically enrolling eligible workers into a pension, the Government hopes to increase the number of individuals actively saving for retirement. The scheme will mandate pension contributions from employees, employers, and the Irish state.

An employee earning €20,000 a year would likely see a gross pension contribution from all sources equal to ~€700 in year one of the scheme. The mandated percentage contributions are set to gradually increase over a 10-year period.

But this, said Dan Malone, is too little too late. “An individual under the age of 30 can currently contribute 10 times more money to their private pension annually, through the likes of a PRSA, than they’ll be able to contribute using auto-enrolment for the first three years… and for those over the age of 60, it’s 26 times more money!”. For someone looking to be proactive and optimal with their retirement savings, banking on auto-enrolment might not be the best bet.

mares have the potential to be, or to produce, the top performance horses of the future.

The RDS, concerned by the absence of Irish-bred horses in top-level show jumping took decisive action in 2010, in order to develop an internationally competitive, export led, sport horse breeding industry once

more.   To do so, it was determined that superior genetics must be identified, highlighted, and promoted, and made accessible to a greater numbers of breeders.   The Futurity concept formed part of a drive to address these breeding concerns, and it also served to create awareness amongst breeders of the need for performance genet-

ics and strong dam lines, in particular.

The class met its objectives early on, when identifying high-profile winners such as Claddagh Cruise On, the 2010 winner and Arraghbeg Clover, the victor in 2013.  Claddagh Cruise On was subsequently purchased and produced to 1.40m level by Cian O’Connor and is now part of Ennisnag

Stud’s breeding enterprise in Co. Kilkenny.   Arraghbeg Clover won the Gold Medal at the World Breeding Championship for Five Year Old in Lanaken, Belguim later that year, under Greg Broderick, and was subsequently competed at international level with Max Kϋhner (AUT) and Olga Chechina (RUS).

A third series of the popular Raised By The Village TV series, made by Waka TV for RTÉ 1, is the pipeline and the producers are looking for people in the South East to take part.

The recent second series received a brilliant response, so producer Marion Cullen

The National Apprenticeship Office has announced its final call to people across the Leinster region to nominate their Generation Apprenticeship ‘Apprentice of the Year 2024. Nominations for the 2024 award close by Friday, June 14. Now in its third year of celebrations, the 2024 Generation Apprenticeship ‘Apprentice of the Year’ awards will not only celebrate and showcase apprentices nominated to win a prestigious national award this

says they're very excited to be working on a third one!

Rasied By The Village transplants struggling urban teenagers to rural village families, offering them the chance to experience an early-to-rise, wi-fi free outdoor lifestyle that’s a break from their worlds of Playstation, Tik Tok,

December, but will celebrate and recognise hardworking apprentice talent and skills in Leinster and everywhere.

There is a 27,000+ strong community of hardworking apprentices, building rewarding careers with Apprenticeship, with the National Apprenticeship Office calling for nominations across Leinster to celebrate apprentices of all talents, backgrounds and abilities, including everyone from young impressive apprentices

Fast Food and all-day lie-ins.

Marion Cullen is looking for rural families in The South East to take part in the new series shooting this Summer/Autumn and would love your help to spread the word.

"We've never had a family from Kilkenny, Wicklow, Wexford, Carlow, or Waterford in the series and we'd love to correct that by featuring the region in Series 3," she told The Kilkenny Observer. If interested and for further details contact Marion Cullen, WAKA TV on 01 6343700

to older apprentice and career changers, to female apprentices breaking barriers in their field and much more.

Nominated apprentices will be assessed on their contribution and achievement in leadership, teamwork, creativity and problem-solving with a record number of nominations wanted across Kilkenny, Carlow, Dublin, Kildare, Laois, Longford, Louth, Meath, Offaly, Westmeath, Wexford and Wicklow and further

afield to beat the 220 nominations in 2023. Nominations can be made by filling in a nomination form at

The Generation Apprenticeship ‘Apprentice of the Year ‘awards ceremony for 2024, will see 500 guests comprised of nominees, their friends, families, employers and special guests, attend the spectacular event in the historic Round Room of The Mansion House Dublin, this December.

Exams students advised by ADHD Now to not stress

As Junior Cert and Leaving Cert exams take place, Matthew Gavin, the founder of ADHD Now, is sharing his deeply personal journey to encourage students to stay calm and not stress

agnosed in his late 20s with ADHD, he went on to earn a Bachelor’s degree in Sports Management and Coaching from Technological University Dublin. Today, he is the founder and CEO of ADHD Now, a company dedicated to provid-

ing ADHD services and support. Matthew also faced incredible personal challenges during his Leaving Cert. The week before his exams started, his mother suffered a brain haemorrhage, and Matthew spent his days travelling by bus from the exam

hall to the intensive care unit at Beaumont Hospital in Dublin. Despite these overwhelming circumstances, Matthew persevered and completed his exams.

"I understand the pressure and anxiety that come with these exams," Matthew says.

"But it's important to remember that your results do not define your worth or your future success. I didn't get the results I wanted, but that didn't stop me from pursuing my passions and finding my own path through life."

News 10 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024
over their results. With his own story of overcoming significant challenges to achieve entrepreneurial success, Matthew aims to provide reassurance to students and their families during this
time. Although Matthew did not achieve the results he had hoped for and was only
You and a village can rear a child! It's time to apply for ‘Apprentice of the Year'
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As I See It Marianne Heron

Here’s why we are not laughing anymore

Whatever happened to comedy? I mean the kind of TV and radio shows which make you laugh out loud, programmes which are so entertaining that you just have to tune in to the next episode to get some light relief from the daily grind. What prompted my question was reading a book c alled ‘Funny Girl’ by Nick Hornby. Set in the ‘60s it’s about a clever, curvy blonde from Blackpool who realises her ambition to do comedy. It’s an entertaining read and in between the b ehind-the-scenes dramas between script writers and actors some of the most hilarious British TV comedies are recalled. Shows like’ Hancock’s Half Hour’ and ‘Steptoe And Son’ or ‘Till Death Us Do Part’. There was satire in those days too with shows like ‘That Was The Week That Was’.

The programmes mightn’t

make us laugh now, humour being a product of the times and they were British humour which was a bit different from ours. But what do we have to give us a good rib-tickling bout of amusement now? Maybe I am missing something but I had to think back to RTE programmes like ‘Hall’s Pictorial Weekly’ and Channel 4’s ‘Father Ted’ (at least we can still watch repeats) where you only need to do a take-off of Mrs Doyle’s cup of tea routine to get a laugh. Or remember Scrap Saturday, with Dermot Morgan’s memorable take on The Boss (Haughey) bawling out his spin man Meara (PJ). But I couldn’t come up with any recent humour on air.

Maybe this is a sign of the times we live in. It could be that we are taking ourselves too seriously or that life these day’s is just too dire, too grim to make

a joke of anyhow. Take the extreme right, for instance, ridiculous as they are in their own way, how can you make hatred, riot incitement, threatening migrants and generation of fake news amusing? On second thoughts, maybe they would be sent up as humour can be a good way to defuse threatening people.

Then there is the whole business of political correctness which makes it diffic ult even to tell jokes these days. Mother-in-law jokes would go down like lead balloon as being sexist, ageist and might be verging on hate speech, if people ever stop hectoring . about her proposed legislation. And Alf Garnett, the reactionary git, simply wouldn’t b e allowed on screen. Let’s face it, you just can’t slag people the way that you used to.

There are a couple of lads

I know, who desperate for a spot of humour, used to reenact bits of the Goon Show featuring Spike Milligan and John Cleese doing

“Could be that we are taking ourselves too seriously...

ut terly ridiculous things to cheer themselves up years after the show ended because nothing ever replaced it. There is the point t oo that comedy has moved off air and into smaller venues with live audiences or moved to social media. Maybe, though, a deeper malaise is at the root of lack of comedy now. We have been watching the unfolding horror of Putin’s war on Ukraine for more than two years now. A war caused by a man obsessed with claiming back former Soviet territory and accusing the Ukrainians of being like Hitler when he himself is behaving like the Fuhrer.

And what does watching the Israeli bombardment and seven month lon g war on Palestinians trapped in ruined Gaza do to our minds, following Hamas’ atrocity on October 7? Listening daily to the heart-rendering details of

the injuries and starvation inflicted on women, children and civilians who have nothin g whatsoever to do with Hamas has a powerful effect.

We feel helpless, powerless to change what is happening and guilty because all w e can do – apart from protesting – is to stand and watch. You could have a programme which showed leaders – caught up in politics and conflicting loyalties – who ple ad peace but fail to do effective things to end the genocide. You might have unwary people say the unsayable, that Netanyahu who, with his right-wing government, wants to wipe Palestinians off the face of Israel.

Or feature arms-gleeful dealers arguing about how to give Ukraine just enough arms to keep the war going. It could be called Carry On Killing but it would be tragic, not remotely funny.

Looking after your ears

Do you suffer from excess wax in your ears? This happened to me recently for the first time ever. I thought I had an ear infection because I had some discomfort and tenderness so I went to the GP to have it checked out. It turned out that there was no infection but one ear was severely blocked and the other was quite badly blocked with wax. The doctor told me to use oil in my ears to soften the wax and to come back to get them syringed. Unfortunately when I went back, the nurse couldn’t get all the wax out so she sent me away warning me to lie on my side for ten minutes to let the oil do its work.

As well as olive oil, you could alternatively use Otosan Ear Drops or Spray. I decided to use the Otosan Natural Ear Spray as some of our customers use this regularly and said it was brilliant. Otosan Spray is an ear spray that is used for removing earwax and for daily ear hygiene. It can also be used to help Vertigo and Tinnitus. I liked using this product as I felt with the long nozzle it could reach deep into my ear. I lay on my side for ten minutes as instructed by

the nurse to let the oils do their work. On the second visit the nurse successfully removed the wax and said she could see my ear drum. I was delighted that it worked and that all was well. I could hear again and had no discomfort. I have promised myself to use the spray regularly to help prevent the build-up of wax and to keep my ears clean.

A build-up of wax may occur if you use cotton buds to clean the ear as this can compact the wax.

Or if you use ear plugs, work in dusty environments, or have narrow ear canals. That was my problem, I have narrow ear canals and never knew. One symptom of wax build is a reduction of hearing, no wonder the TV was up to full blast! There may be discomfort, noise, or ringing, or feeling of blockage in the ear. And temporary deafness after hair washing or swimming. I was very happy to hear clearly again.

12 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024
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People’s s annoyance over inflation and food prices, migration and the cost of fighting climate change saw nationalist parties capitalise in the European Parliamentary election.

As this paper goes to press, nationalist, populist and eurosceptic parties were on course to win just under a quarter of seats in the EU assembly, according to the chamber’s own projections.

In Germany, the further rise of the far right was expected – every poll had predicted as much. What was not expected, however, was that revelations of alleged corruption and involvement of the Alternative für Deutschland (AfD) with the Russian and Chinese governments would apparently matter so little to its voters.

Though the resulting gains –the AfD jumped to 16% from 11% in 2019 – were overall more modest than looked probable in the spring, across east Germany the far right came out ahead of all other parties.

Neither did it seem to worry the AfD base much that Germany’s domestic intelligence services had declared the party “under suspicion of extremism”. Quite the contrary: when asked in a TV poll whether their vote was mainly a protest against the redgreen-liberal government or out of affiliation with the AfD’s core beliefs, a large majority opted for the latter.

The so-called traffic-light

coalition suffered a crushing defeat, losing out to the conservative CDU/CSU opposition – a major blow for Social Democrat chancellor Olaf Scholz. No German government in recent years has been as unpopular as this one.

On Sunday night, we began to hear the first demands for a vote of confidence. If Scholz’s rather indolent grin after learning the results is any

One in four European seats move to Right

indication, he will do no such thing.

Still, with French President Emmanuel Macron calling for new elections and the German government appearing as weak as it did, the centre of Europe looks pretty shaky indeed.

The two issues that seem to have driven the further rise of the far right – migration and the rejection of the green

agenda – stand in uneasy connection. It seems unpalatable to many people that the German Greens suggest we can stop the Earth from further warming, but it is impossible for us to exercise control over who enters the country. What seemed entirely doable, even mandatory, during the last European election in 2019 – remember Greta? Remember the Green

Deal? – now apparently sounds to many voters like an elitist pipe dream.

The fact that the German Greens are also Ukraine’s staunchest allies may well have contributed to the overwhelming success of the AfD in the east.

But, at least for the time being, the centre will hold. Not only is an overwhelming majority of Europeans in

favour of non-authoritarian parties, Poland also shows that no triumph of the far right is carved in stone. It also seems highly unlikely that the far right will be able to overcome its deep divisions and form a coherent bloc in the European parliament. But the liberal middle has only been given a respite. If issues such as migration are not tackled more wisely, the next time things may look much more bleak.

While Le Pen’s RN looks united and its lead candidate Jordan Bardella is France’s most popular politician, the pro- European centre right and centre left are splintered and may be unable to unite in a three-week campaign.

Under France’s two-round election system, the two top candidates in each constituency go forward to a run-off. Based on Sunday’s result, the RN is sure to reach the second round in most districts, and it is far from sure that a “republican front” – an alliance of parties that in the past agreed to block the far right – will back the alternative candidate. On the contrary, the RN may cut local deals not to oppose the conservative Republicans’ incumbents in return for backing RN candidates in other seats. Meanwhile, the left looks irreconcilably split, not least due to the abrasive personality of hard-left leader Jean-Luc Mélenchon.

Three days after commemorating the defeat of fascism on the 80th anniversary of D-day, France may be on the way to electing an extreme-right government.

Team Ireland getting down soon to European work


The people have spoken. Following the European Parliamentary Elections, our votecounting system has selected representatives for Europe. We shall call them ‘Team Ireland’. These individuals are tasked not with serving political agendas but with representing us, the people of Ireland..

The Irish MEPs, forming ‘Team Ireland’, exemplify a broad spectrum of political ideologies, ranging from members of notable political parties to distinguished independents. This cohesive group, a product of the elections for the European Parliament, illustrates Ireland’s dedication to diverse and pluralistic representation on the European stage. The varying backgrounds and political philosophies of these MEPs reflect the complex perspectives of the Irish people, ensuring that

a wide array of interests and concerns are brought to the forefront in the European Parliament.

By doing so, ‘Team Ireland’ stands as a testament to the principle of proportional representation within the European Parliament, highlighting how Ireland’s voices contribute to shaping its policies and decisions.

Ireland grapples with a myriad of pressing issues, notably economic instability, marked by housing shortages and rising living costs. Social policies, particularly healthcare and education, demand urgent attention to address disparities and ensure equitable access. Environmental

challenges, including climate change and sustainable development, remain at the forefront, necessitating immediate action.

Additionally, Ireland’s role within the European Union and its implications for the concept of a European Army, particularly in the context of membership of NATO, are pivotal. It navigates Brexit implications and fosters relationships to bolster its position on the European stage, balancing its commitments and contributions to collective security and defence within Europe against its traditional policy of military neutrality.

The Irish electorate, with its

diverse palette of concerns and aspirations, expects ‘Team Ireland’ to champion policies that resonate with their immediate and longterm needs. At the European level, there’s a strong desire for initiatives that tackle economic instability, particularly in housing and healthcare, alongside robust action on climate change.

Voters seek representation that not only voices their concerns but actively engages in crafting solutions that reflect Ireland’s unique challenges and opportunities within the EU framework.

To effectively tackle Ireland’s pressing issues, ‘Team Ireland’ must prioritise strategic advocacy and policymaking within the European Parliament. This entails not only identifying areas of critical need but also forging strategic partnerships and lobbying for policies that benefit Ireland. They could spearhead initiatives focused on economic recovery, particularly in housing and healthcare, by leveraging EU funds and partnerships. This approach can be expanded to include education and infrastructure develop-

ment, enhancing the nation’s overall resilience. Additionally, championing policies that promote sustainable development and climate action could position Ireland as a leader in environmental stewardship.

Prioritising these areas could also bolster Ireland’s economy by attracting green investment and creating jobs in sustainable industries.

Engaging in constructive dialogue and collaboration with EU counterparts will be crucial in ensuring Ireland’s concerns are addressed on a broader scale. Through these concerted efforts, ‘Team Ireland’ can advocate for policies that not only address immediate national concerns but also pave the way for long-term prosperity and sustainability.

In the intricate dance of European politics, the Irish MEPs’ ability to work across party lines stands as a beacon of strategic advantage. Crossparty collaboration not only amplifies Ireland’s voice but also ensures a more cohesive and powerful representation in the European Parliament. By setting aside partisan differences and focusing on

shared national interests, ‘Team Ireland’ can navigate the complex legislative landscape more effectively, enhancing Ireland’s influence and effectiveness on the European stage.

‘Team Ireland’ faces the challenge of uniting a diverse electorate’s voice while harnessing the strength that this diversity brings. The varied composition of MEPs, though reflective of Ireland’s multifaceted political landscape, necessitates a delicate balance in prioritising national over party interests. Yet, therein lies a significant opportunity: to leverage this diversity for a richer, more comprehensive representation of Ireland in Europe, fostering innovative solutions and a united front on issues critical to Ireland’s future. Looking ahead, the collective efforts of these MEPs are poised to enhance Ireland’s influence within the EU, navigating future challenges with a blend of unity and distinctiveness. This strategic approach promises to safeguard and elevate Ireland’s interests on the European stage, marking a promising horizon for its representation.

News 14 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024
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When growing older can cost you money Your Money & You John Ellis

As a financial adviser I often encounter individuals with differing expectations about their financial needs in retirement. They often underestimate how much money they will need and how long they expect to live in retirement. Living longer into your 80s and 90s can significantly impact your financial needs. The State Pension and other supports, like the fuel allowance and GP Visit Card, provide some relief, but they are often not enough to cover all expenses.

Recent findings from a Royal London Ireland survey throws light on these expectations and reveal a concerning trend. Almost half of those surveyed in Ireland (45%) expect their 60s to be the years they will need the most money, while nearly four in 10 (38%) anticipate needing more money in their 70s. Only 17% believe they will need the most money in their 80s and 90s.

This survey, which polled 1,000 adults nationwide, highlights the varying perceptions of financial needs in retirement. Interestingly views shift as people get closer to retirement. For instance, just 8% of 35-44-year-olds expect their 80s to be the most expensive decade, while 19% of those

over 55 feel this way. Commenting on the findings, Mark Reilly, Pension Proposition Lead with Royal London Ireland, noted: “How much we’ll need for our retirement years could be anyone’s guess – as none of us knows for sure what lies ahead.”

While we cannot foresee the future, we can make educated guesses based on the following major costs.

Nursing Home Fees: Weekly fees can range from €1,000 to €3,000!

Mortgage Payments: Almost 27% of homeowners expect to be paying off their mortgage

in retirement, which can be a substantial financial strain.

Healthcare Costs: Health insurance premiums can exceed €4,700 annually, and GP visits can cost between €45 and €70 each. More expensive treatments, such as heart surgery, can add significant costs.

Daily Living Expenses: Utilities, groceries, and other daily expenses remain constant. For instance, the average annual electricity bill for a three-bedroom house is €1,763, and the gas bill is €1,466.

Discretionary Spending: Travel, hobbies, and further education are common pursuits in retirement, each with its own costs.

Supporting Dependants: With many having children later in life, some retirees may still support their children, including helping with house deposits or education costs.

Without planning many retirees may find themselves

struggling to make ends meet. This is why it is crucial to start planning early and consider all potential costs. Setting realistic financial goals and regularly reviewing and adjusting your retirement plan can make a significant difference.

Awareness is the first step towards change. By recognising the potential financial challenges of retirement, you can take proactive steps to secure your future. Consulting a financial adviser and making informed decisions about pension, savings and investments are all critical actions.

While the journey may seem daunting, “with proper planning and foresight, it is possible to navigate the financial complexities of retirement and enjoy the golden years with peace of mind”. 086 8362622

Cllr Joe Lyons is excited to get back to work for his community

Cllr Joe Lyons is thrilled with the outcome of the Local Election. It was shown that he doubled his vote from the 2019 Local Election. It was a huge relief for him to be elected on the first count.

Cllr Lyons thanked his family and the team that supported him over the past two months. The energetic and hard working team left no stone unturned in seeking votes for him. Cllr Joe Lyons said he is thrilled and humbled to be reelected to the Kilkenny County Council for the CallanThomastown Municipal District.

16 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024
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Science & Wellbeing

There will be three phases of AI evolution in the 21st century, according to Our Next Reality: How the AI-powered Metaverse Will Reshape the World, written by Alvin Wang Graylin and Louis Rosenber. The third stage could bring the development of artificial super intelligence (ASI). Although such a system would far exceed human intelligence, it would still be influenced by the totality of humanity’s creations, possessing a small but significant part of us within them.

It’s clear there’s a lot of fear and misinformation about the risks and role of AI and the metaverse in our society going forward. It may be helpful to take a three-phase view of how to approach the problem. In the next one to 10 years, we should look at AI as tools to support our lives and our work, making us more efficient and productive.

In this period, AI will be the spatial computing platform we go to learn, work, and play in more immersive ways.

In the following 11-50 years, as more and more people are liberated from the obligation of employment, we should look at AI as our patron which supports us to explore our interests in arts, culture, and science, or whatever field we want to pursue. Most will also turn to the metaverse as a creative playground for expression, leisure, and experimentation.

In the third phase, after 50 plus years (if not sooner) the world’s many separate AGI (artificial general intelligence) systems will have converged into a single ASI (artificial super intelligence) with the wisdom to unite the world’s approximately 200 nations and help us manage a peaceful planet with all its citizens provided for and given the choice of how they want to contribute to the society. At this point, the AI system will have outpaced our biological intelligence and limitations, and we should find ways to deploy it outside our solar system and spread intelligence life into all corners of the galaxy and beyond. At this

There is that, subconsciously, hidden fear among some that Artificial Intelligence (AI) will outdo us all, to the effect that AI has the potential to be smarter than the human brain. No so. According to the latest research, the human brain may be capable of storing 10 times more information than previously thought, and the such findings could lead to a better understanding of memory decline with ageing and disease. Previous studies have shown that learning and remembering new information strengthens nerve connections in the brain called ‘synapses’ which can grow stronger or weaker over time, affecting our memory. However, quantifying the strength of individual syn -

Back to the future: where AI will take us

third stage, we should view AI as our children, for these AI beings will all have a small part of us in them. Just like we possess in our genes a small part of all the beings that preceded us in the tree of life, they will hence forth be guided by all the memes humans have created and compiled throughout our history, from our morals and ethics to our philosophy and arts. The metaverse platform will then become an interface for us to explore and experience the far reaches of the Universe together with

our children although our physical bodies may still be on Earth.

Hopefully, these children will view us as their honourable ancestors and treat us the way Eastern cultures treat their elderly, with respect and care. As with all children, they will learn their values and morals by observing us. It’s best we start setting a better example for them by treating each other as we would like AIs to treat us in the future. Of course, the time frames above are only estimates, so could happen faster or

It’s a nobrainer for us humans!

slower than described, but the phases will likely occur in that order, if we are able to sustainably align future AGI/ASI systems. If for some reason, we are not able to align AGI/ASI, or they are misused by bad actors for catastrophic outcomes then the future could be quite dark.

The biggest concerns have always been around the risk of misuse of all flavours of AI by bad actor humans (vs. an evil AGI), and we need to do all in our power to prevent those scenarios. On the other hand, any super intelligent being we

apses has been a challenge for neuroscientists. But a new technique,

described in the journal Neural Computation, offers fresh insights into synap -

tic strength, precision of plasticity, and the amount of information these nerve

time you played a board game with children – did you do all possible to crush them and win? Of course not. When we don’t fear something, we gain added patience and understanding. Well, the ASI we are birthing won’t just understand psychology fully, but all arts, sciences, history, ethics, and philosophy. With that level of wisdom, it should be more enlightened than any possible human, and attain a level of understanding we can’t even imagine.

create will more likely be innately ethical and caring, rather than aggressive and evil.

If we take the right calculated actions in the coming decade, it could very well be the beginning of a new age of prosperity for mankind and all life everywhere.

Carl Jung said: “The more you understand psychology, the less you tend to blame others for their actions.” We can all attest that there is truth in this statement simply by observing our own mindset when interacting with young children. Remember the last

connections can store.

The technique could help quantify the strength of synapses and enhance our understanding of how humans learn and remember, and how those processes change with age or disease.

“We have now created a technique for studying the strength of synapses, the precision with which neurons modulate that strength, and the amount of information synapses are capable of storing – leading us to find that our brain can store 10 times more information than we previously thought,” says study co-author Terrence Sejnowski.

When a message is transmitted across the brain, it hops as an electric signal from neuron to neuron via a tiny space, where the two

A 2022 paper from a group of respected researchers found linkages between compassion and intelligence. In July 2023, Elon Musk officially entered the AI race with a new company called xAI, and the objective function of their foundational model is simply stated as “understand the Universe”. So it seems he shares the view that giving AI innate curiosity and a thirst for knowledge can help bring forth some level of increased alignment. There are many today who are calling for the end ofs or even the end of humans on Earth due to recent technological progress. If we take the right calculated actions in the coming decade, it could very well be the beginning of a new age of prosperity for mankind and all life everywhere. We are near the end of something. We are near the end of the hundred-thousand-year ignorance and aimless toil phase of the Anthropocene epoch and will soon turn the page to start a new age of enlightenment far beyond our dreams. When we do find a solution for AI alignment, and peacefully transition our world to the next phase of progress, the societal benefits will be truly transformational. It could lead us to an exponential increase in human understanding and capabilities. It will bring us near-infinite productivity and limitless clean energy to the world. The inequality, health, and climate issues that plague the world today could disappear within a relatively short period. And we can start to think more about plans at sci-fi time scales to go boldly where no one has gone before.

cells meet, called a synapse. The human brain has more 100 trillion synapses and synaptic strength is known to play a role in how they store memories. Conditions like Alzheimer’s tend to weaken synapses and reduce the ability of the brain to store information.

In the new study, scientists assessed pairs of synapses from a rat hippocampus, the key brain region for learning and memory. They found that each rat hippocampal synapse can store between 4.1 and 4.6 bits of information.

This means the human brain may be capable of holding at least a petabyte of information, equivalent to the data contained on the entire internet.

News 18 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024

In seven, in Hidden Spain

1. Babia

Calling all nature lovers, Babia is a must on your Spain bucket list! Located in the northwest of Castilla y León, the Babia region, including the villages of Cabrilanes and San Emiliano, was in 2004 declared a Biosphere Reserve.

With peaks of over 2,000 metres, such as Peña Ubiña at 2,417 metere, The Cantabrian mountains that separate Asturias from León, mark the reserve’s northern limit.

The unique landscape of snow-clad peaks, rock fields, vast valleys and glacial lakes, makes this area a paradise for avid hikers and mountaineers.

2. Calella de Palafrugell

Thanks to its whitewashed houses, maze-like cobbled streets, wooden fishing boats lining the harbour and an abundance of little coves and bays, Calella de Palafrugell is one of the most beautiful towns on the Costa Brava and summer destinations in Spain.

Located in the Girona Province, about 125

kilometers north of Barcelona, it is one of three coastal towns belonging to the municipality of Palafrugell, the other two being Llafranc and Tamariu.

Beautiful sandy coves and bays are the main drawcards of the area, with the beaches of Port Bo and En Calau located just south of the town centre. Another gem worth visiting is the botanical garden at Cap Roig where you’ll also find the beautiful beach of El Golfet close by.

3. Albarracín

Set in the middle of a wild, rocky landscape, on a curve of the Guadalaviar River, the peachy-coloured, fairytaleesque village of Albarracín is one of the most beautiful hidden gems in Spain. In fact, it has been voted the most beautiful small town in Spain several times.

Located in the Province of Teruel, about three hours due east of Madrid, Albarracín really gives you the feeling of stepping back in time. Despite its small size, it’s well worth setting aside at least half a day to explore.

As you wander through the cobbled streets, be sure to stop by Casa de la Julianeta and Casa de la Calle Azagra, two of the best-preserved buildings in the village. Other highlights include the Cathedral of El Salvador, Plaza Mayor and Torre del Andador which boasts incredible views of the town and surrounding area.

4. Alcalá del Júcar

Set on a rocky slope that overlooks the Jucar River, Alcalá del Júcar is truly one of Spain’s hidden gems and a must on any Spain Bucket List. Due to the river, fertile fields and unique location, which allows easy defence, there have been settlements here since ancient times. With a castle/fortress on top of a huge rock, charming white houses built into the rock-face and a Roman bridge crossing the river below, the little town is a magnificent sight. Aside from going for a stroll through the windy streets, one of the most interesting places to see is the Cave El Diablo, a makeshift museum/

bar. There are various rooms and artefacts to explore, giving you a glimpse of the history and local life in Alcalá del Júcar.

Finish the day off with a visit to the 12th-century castle that boasts panoramic views of the town and surrounding area.

5. Carmona

Often overlooked in favour of its more popular neighbours, Carmona is a hidden gem in Andalucía. Dating back to pre-Roman times, it is one of the oldest cities in mainland Europe and the perfect day trip from Sevilla. Traces of this rich history can still be seen today in its palaces, majestic Mudéjar churches, Moorish forts, city walls and a Roman necropolis containing over nine hundred family tombs, dating from the 2nd century BC to the 4th century AD. Carmona’s most imposing landmark is a Moorish fortress called Alcázar de la Puerta de Sevilla. Today, all that remains of the palace that once stood inside the Alcázar is the Prisoners’ Hall. The fortress itself is still worth

a visit, you’ll get beautiful views over Carmona from the Tower of Gold.

Another gem in Carmona is the Parador de Carmona, a hotel built over the ruins of a stunning fortress perched on a cliff high above the town. You have to see the breathtaking view from their balcony and the Moroccaninspired interior courtyard is the perfect location for a photoshoot.

6. Cazorla

Set within Sierra de Cazorla, a UNESCO biosphere reserve and the largest protected natural space in Spain, surrounded by olive groves and with a rugged mountainous backdrop, Cazorla is one of Andalucía’s most striking villages.

Towering above the whitewashed houses is the Castle of la Yedra, also known as the Ivy Castle, which houses the Upper Guadalquivir Museum of Arts and Popular Customs. Other highlights include the Town Hall in the beautiful Renaissance-style former Padres Mercedarios Convent, Plaza de Santa María and Las

Cadenas Palace. If you’re craving a little adrenaline rush, you might want to go kayaking or rafting on the Guadalquivir River. There are also many hiking and biking routes in the area as well as roads suitable for 4×4 vehicles.

7. Cerdanya

Cerdanya, a region of the Pyrenees that spans both France and Spain, is another hidden gem still unknown to many international visitors. It is one of the widest alpine valleys in Europe and because of its varied and abundant flora and fauna, the Cadí-Moixeró Natural Park was created in 1983. While Puigcerdà is the region’s main town and the base for most hikers and mountain bikers, nearby Llívia is of special interest, especially during summer. Despite being part of Spain, it’s actually surrounded by France, and to get there you have to drive almost two kilometres into France. During the colder months, skiers and snowboarders can hit the slopes of La Molina and Masella.

19 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024
Travel & Leisure


Furthermore Gerry Moran

Irish Coffee and seeing red in Liverpool Airport

I had a drink last week. Really, Gerry! The drink I had was an Irish Coffee –something I haven’t had in quite a while. And, as I sat sipping, and savouring, it I got to wondering how Irish Coffee came about. Indeed I wondered if it’s Irish at all?

And then I remembered a leaflet I picked up in the River Court Hotel many, many years ago and miraculously I was able to locate it. I say miraculously because, as my wife will readily, and rapidly, confirm I am no archivist. I am totally and utterly disorganised. A disaster if I am to be honest, so much so that my wife says it’s driving her to drink. Not Irish Coffee but something equally potent.

But here I’m blathering on when I should be getting on with The History of Irish Coffee, according to the River Court Hotel’s leaflet.

“In the late 1930 and early 1940s, Foynes (in Co. Limerick) served as the hub for the latest mode of air travel – the flying boat – between the US and Europe. Every flying boat leaving, or arriving in, Europe came through Foynes Airport.

One chilly night a flight departed Foynes with stops scheduled in Newfoundland and New York. Bad weather, however, prompted the captain to turn about and head back. The restaurant in the airport was alerted to have food and drink prepared as the passengers would more than likely be cold and in need of some cheer.

The head chef, Joe Sheridan, had coffee prepared and decided to put a little something in it to give the passengers a little kick to get them out of their cold slump, so, he added a drop, or two, of Irish whiskey to the brew.

A surprised American passenger is said to have asked: “Is this Brazilian coffee?” to which Joe replied: “No, that’s Irish coffee.” From that day forward Irish Coffee became known around the world as the official welcoming drink served at Foynes.

In 1945, Foynes Airport closed, the age of flying boats having come to an end. Now known as Shannon International Airport, it is where Joe Sheridan took his famous Irish Coffee to welcome people to Ireland. If Foynes was the birthplace of Irish Coffee, then San Francisco was its port of entry to North America.

In 1952 the Buena Vista Café in San Francisco was a saloon where longshore men and workers employed at the nearby sardine cannery took their breaks. In November of

that year, Jack Koeppler, the owner of the Buena Vista and a friend, Stanton Delaplane, a renowned

“Your elderly granny you may throw her over your shoulder...

food critic, who had enjoyed an Irish Coffee in Shannon Airport, had a brilliant idea – together they would recreate the recipe for Irish Coffee. They spent hours experimenting with various whiskeys and proportions; but one thing eluded them. They couldn’t get the cream to float; it always sunk to the bottom of the glass. Jack even flew to Shannon to ask the man himself, Joe Sheridan, for the secret which Joe explained: whisk fresh cream, just short of stiff and pour it slowly over the back of a spoon to float it on the coffee. The recipe was then perfected. Staying with airports – I was in Liverpool’s John Lennon Airport a few weeks back. My wife and I were in Liverpool en route to Wales to visit our two grandchildren. James, our son, is collecting us. He

arrives but seems in a hell of a hurry. We barely have time to hug and embrace. He soon explains the hurry – it costs £5 to park for 10 minutes, 20 minutes costs £10 while one hour will knock you back 25 quid! I occasionally crib about parking charges here in Ireland, not least in Dublin, but £5 for 10 minutes is nothing short of extortion! Indeed, as soon as you park you may sprint to arrivals to collect your people. And if you’re collecting your elderly granny you may throw her over your shoulder, ignore her screaming, and leg it to your car as fast as you can. Oh, and don’t think you can park anywhere on the periphery of the car park. They’ve got cameras everywhere and you’ll end up with an £80 (almost €95) fine! That’s a helluva lot of Irish Coffees!

Amazone Groundcare Kilkenny

Open Day Wednesday 19th June

Amazone offer some of the most heavy-duty flail collector mowers on the market. They are specifically engineered for sports pitches, golf courses, landscaping contractors, national parks, private estates and stud farms. The Amazone range includes the Groundkeeper and HorseHopper mounted flail mowers, the Profihopper 1250 & 1500 SmartLine 4WD selfpropelled flail mowers. Unique to Amazone is the patented mechanical auger on Profihopper machines. This ensures that whatever is cut, will end up in the hopper. Long wet grass or wildflower will be cut and collected without blockage.

• Groundkeeper 1500 GHL-T; a semi mounted flail collector that offers impressive first-class quality and reliability in any conditions.

• Groundkeeper 1800 Drive; a trailed version of the Groundkeeper 1500 this is the ideal professional machine, for mowing, scarifying, mulching or collecting leaves and other debris.

The main functions of the Amazone machines include cutting and collecting anything from short fairways or sports pitches to heavy wet grass, pollinators and wildflower meadows, mulching, scarifying, leaf collection and rolling.

On Wednesday 19th June Eardly Agri will be hosting an Amazone Groundcare open day at Kilkenny Golf Club postcode: R95 E5YY From 9:30am until 3:00pm visitors will have the opportunity to view the unique and versatile range of Amazone trailed flail collectors and self-propelled mowers, as well as watch live demonstrations.

Machines available to view on the day include:

• HorseHopper 1800; a universal machine that mounts to a small compact tractor and can complete all tasks in a single pass; mowing, scarifying, cutting and collection of grass and horse droppings.

• Profihopper 1250; a compact and comfortable design with the unique cross auger collection system for mowing, scarifying or collecting leaves, horse droppings or leaves.

• Profihopper 1500 Smartline; providing all the benefits of the Profihopper 1250 with this is the ultimate high-performance machine for maximum output and comfort.

This introductory event for the Amazone Groundcare range is open to anyone interested in the machinery. If you would like more information, please contact John Bowden 087 399 1307 or Adrian 085 1390091.

20 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024

Kilkenny welcomes back its Kilkenny welcome team

Local Volunteers to Meet & Greet Visitors

Kilkenny County Council today, Friday 7th June, 2024 launched its ‘Kilkenny Welcome Team’ initiative in partnership with Kilkenny Volunteer Centre and Failte Ireland. Kilkenny’s Welcome Teams are a group of 20 volunteers who will again meet and greet visitors, providing a warm Kilkenny welcome along with visitor information over the summer months.

Officially launched by the Cathaoirleach of Kilkenny

County Council, Cllr. Michael Doyle and Mayor of the Kilkenny Municipal District, Cllr. Joe Malone, this innovative tourism initiative was first developed in 2021 as a response to the COVID 19 pandemic.

The Kilkenny Welcome Teams will be strategically placed at high footfall locations around Kilkenny City to provide a range of information from opening hours to local attractions, nearby toilet facilities,

pharmacists, ATM locations, train and bus times.

All Kilkenny Welcome volunteers are fully trained in public safety and visitor comfort will be a priority at all times. Volunteers will only engage when asked and will not impose on any visitors uninvited.

Commenting at the launch, Cathaoirleach Cllr Michael Doyle added; “With many challenges remaining for tourism and hospitality, many people want to help

to promote the sector and are giving their valuable time in volunteering to be part of the initiative. The Kilkenny Welcome Team also provides an opportunity for individuals to put the Kilkenny jersey on and play a meaningful role in their local community.”

Mayor of Kilkenny, Cllr Joe Malone added; “The launch of the ‘Kilkenny Welcome’ initiative demonstrates the commitment of Kilkenny County Council in supporting

the local tourism sector in its endeavour to maximise the tourism season this year.

Chairperson of Kilkenny Tourism, Gareth Alcorn added; “The Kilkenny Welcome Team is a great example of how the community can join forces in an effort to drive tourism

and hospitality in our county. Kilkenny has always been renowned for giving visitors a ‘warm welcome’, and now with the help of the volunteers; ‘this on the ground’ approach from local people will show how Kilkenny really cares about its visitors.”

21 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024 News

Lovely hurling: the future of TV in Ireland The Last Word

Television in Ireland is in the middle a revolution! Gone are the fixed TV schedules, making way for the reign of streaming services and smart TVs, our modern thrones. We’re entering a new era where TV suggests shows quicker than a barman pours a pint unless it’s Guinness of course. Free-to-air services are evolving, offering future tastes without cost. This shift towards personalised, accessible TV viewing is exciting, heralding a future where TV knows us well.

Streaming has transformed our TV-watching habits, offering a global buffet of shows on demand. No longer tied to a schedule, we discover unique series showcasing diverse cultures and stories — like having the world in our living room, minus the weather. It’s a shift from traditional TV; missed episodes are a thing of the past. With content ranging from British dramas to Irish comedies available anytime,

it connects and delights us all, marking a true revolution. Free-to-air television, a dependable staple, evolves to stay relevant amidst the digital age and competing subscription models. These broadcasters blend tradition with modern updates, like improved digital interfaces and unique content, to ensure compelling programming endures. This strategy is akin to a classic pub getting a modern revamp, proving that quality entertainment can still thrive without subscription fees. As such, free-to-air services seamlessly integrate the old with the new, demonstrating resilience and adaptability in a changing media landscape.

These innovative devices have made traditional channel browsing obsolete, fostering family gatherings into interactive viewing sessions. Now, debates over the remote have shifted to exploring a vast array of apps and

streaming services, making it easier for everyone to find their preferred entertainment.

Smart TVs serve as modern hearths, where voices command the remote to bring forth all manner of shows, catering to varied tastes and enhancing family togetherness. Truly, smart TVs have redefined the essence of the living room, symbolising the advancement of our communal viewing experience. Ever marvelled at your streaming service, intuitively recommending shows as if it’s reading your mind? This isn’t just fluke, but a blend of advanced algorithms at work, mirroring the knack of a close friend knowing your tastes. This bespoke viewing journey is the result of tech wizards meticulously curating content, so it feels uniquely yours, transforming a simple evening into an engaging escapade. It’s a modern marvel where technology meets personal taste, redefining en-

tertainment. All of which asks the question how they do that – but that’s for another day. And so to our beloved hurling in the TV of tomorrow. The evolution of TV and streaming brings into question the accessibility of hurling, now often behind paywalls. Platforms like

GAAGO partnerships involving RTÉ and the GAA, have taken control, shifting viewing from traditional to digital. This change prompts discussions about accessibility and the preservation of hurling as part of our cultural identity, amid monetisation efforts. Ensuring the global Irish commu-

nity and fans maintain access to these games is crucial. The ongoing dialogue should aim at balancing tradition with modern consumption practices, keeping the essence of hurling widely accessible. So, what will be the cost you might be wondering, what’s the damage going to be to our wallets or Revolut account? Well, a lot of what’s changing will still be on the house for us viewers. The free-to-air channels are upping their game without adding extra cost and, even with smart TVs and streaming, there’s a lot of content that won’t cost you a penny more. Sure, for some premium bits, you’ll have to splash out, but there’s plenty to enjoy without breaking the bank. It’s a brave new world, and we’re buzzing with excitement for what’s to come. The future’s looking bright, filled with endless viewing choices. Let’s embrace it with open arms...

Cllr Michael McCarthy is back for another term in the Castlecomer Municipal District

I am honoured to have served you as a Kilkenny County Councillor for the last 10 years. In that time, I feel I have worked tirelessly for the people of North Kilkenny. I am looking forward to continuing this work for the next five years.

I wish to thank Patti and all of my family and relations. I would also like to thank my team of canvassers and everyone who supported and voted for me in this election. The consistency and loyalty that was shown is greatly appreciated. A big thank you to one and all for the courtesy shown as we knocked on doors both rural and urban.

Now that the dust has settled, I will do my utmost to continue to represent my constituents in the Castlecomer Municipal District to the best of my ability over the next five years.

The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024

Coolagh Hall renamed to honour the late Bishop Séamus Freeman

All are welcome to join us this Saturday evening, 15th June, where a plaque will be unveiled to mark the renaming of Coolagh Hall to The Bishop Freeman Hall. Following mass in Coolagh at 7pm, the plaque will be unveiled at 7.45pm at Coolagh Hall.

A large portrait of former Bishop Séamus Freeman, who passed in 2022, will also be hung in the Hall, which is formerly the old National School where Bishop Seamus Freeman attended Primary School. This portrait is being kindly donated by the Freeman family.

23 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024 Advertisement News


Future Sounds of KilkennyLive gig series for young people 2024

If you are a young emerging Kilkenny musician, singer songwriter or in a band, Kilkenny Arts Office is inviting you to apply to be a part of ‘In Bloom, Future Sounds of Kilkenny’.

July is set to be an electrifying month for the city's music scene with the launch of a gig series dedicated to young emerging musicians and bands. Kilkenny County Council Arts Office and Cleeres pub promises a vibrant showcase of fresh talent, all in a welcoming, alcohol-free environment. These events will not only provide a platform for young artists but also foster a burgeoning gig culture within the city. It's an opportunity for young musicians to connect with audiences, build a following, and energise the city with their creativity and passion. The series is more than just a set of gigs; it's a movement towards amplifying young voices and nurturing the youth arts community. So, get ready to be part of something special

– a celebration of new music in the city!

Venue: Cleeres Pub, Parliament Street, Kilkenny

Dates: Sunday July 21st, August 11th, Sept 1st and Sept 22nd

Time: 2-4pm

Strictly alcohol-free events

To apply you must be

• A musician, singer songwriter or in a band currently based in Kilkenny or originally from Kilkenny

• an emerging/early career musician

• between the ages of 14 – 21 years old

• Submit a completed application form

• Successful applicants under 18 years must

have a completed parental consent form to take part

• Must be available on the following dates July 21st, August 11th, Sept 1st and Sept 22nd

Application closing date: 4pm Monday June 17th 2024

For more information on application guidelines and application form please visit: www.

Climate Change

– are we all playing our part?


‘We live in a land of the moment.’
News 24 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024

The Kilkenny Observer has linked up with Market Cross Shopping Centre, Kilkenny

With lots of retail outlets to choose from and places to grab a bite to eat, not to mention the exciting news of three new businesses joining the Shopping Centre.

Complete your entries below...

Question: Name one of the shops at Market Cross Shopping Centre

Competition Rules

1. This competition is sponsored by The Kilkenny Observer

2. The prize will be €200 voucher for Market Cross Shopping Centre, Kilkenny

3. The closing date for entries is Wednesday, July 17th2024 at 5.00pm.

4. The winner will be chosen by an open draw held at the office of The Kilkenny Observer on Friday, July 19th 2024.

5. The prize is non-transferable; no cash equivalents may be claimed.

6. All competition entries must be completed on the above form only.

7. The winner will be advised by phone. Please be available to take the call

8. After being notified the name and photograph of the winner will be posted in the next edition of the Kilkenny Observer.

9. Entrants will be deemed to have accepted these rules and to have agreed to be bound by them when entering the competition.

10. The competition is not open to The Kilkenny Observer employees or their families.

25 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024 COMPETITION TIME Observer The Kilkenny WIN a €200 voucher COMPETITION
FORM Name ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................ Address County Mobile Email ...................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................

Golden Memories A visit to Desart Court

eccentricities… characterized the day-to-day house routine of the aristocrats. They never seemed to work.

When she was 77 years old in about 1958, Nell DooleyMonaghan wrote to Callan’s local correspondent Peter Roughan to share some memories with him and his readers. Nell was a daughter of Jim Dooley who worked with Ben Thompson, a gamekeeper in Desart.

In the letter she wrote: “Dear Peter, You will no doubt be glad to hear from an old Callan woman. I left there in 1909. I was born, bred, and reared in the Foxcover, just at dear old Desart School. Mr. Cummins was my teacher, I should say of happy memory, because he was a brilliant teacher. He taught Protestants and Catholics, and I was a pal of all his children.

“You spoke of Stephan and Bridget Ryan. Bridget Kennedy was a cousin of my mother. God rest them all. My mam- Mary Kennedy- was born out in Cappahayden. You mentioned the Crokes of Westcourt, well, Tom Croke married my eldest daughter- Bettie; and Dan Maher of Great Oak is married to Mary, my second eldest girl.

“Jim Holden of Westcourt married my sister-Kitty-and they are now living in West Street in Dr. Phelan’s house. Our teacher- Mr. Cumminshad his hands full when we were going to school in Desart, the young Holme’s, the

Thompsons, poor Father Peter Power of Ballywalters- he died out in Australia, so did Fr. Michael Walshe of Ballykeeffe. God rest them both. Mr. Cummins had his hands full.

“He had some brilliant scholars and some hard chaws too. I must say that his daughter-in-law- Mrs. Tom Cummins- is a really brilliant teacher too. She has secured the Carlisle and Blake Premium. You know what it means to get that coveted prize.”

Nellie went on to describe her experience of visiting Desart Court in its heyday.

She found very little of the snobbery and class distinctions that we associate with such pre-independence aristocratic settings.

She was always happy when Lord and Lady Desart arrived at the Big House for their holidays from June to October. As a young girl she was welcomed into the house and often found herself seated at a vast table in the Staff hall, surrounded by as many as twenty servants. To her innocent child’s mind, the imposing lofty rooms, the noble staircase, and the luxuriant ornamentation appeared unreal and dreamlike, so far removed was such magnificence from the simple lives of ordinary Callan folk.

In her recollection, the house had a “solid air of grandeur and opulence”. Airs and graces… and delightful

Whenever Nellie visited the palatial residence, she had a sense of important guests just “gliding” along corridors, or of the Lord or Lady basking in affluence or luxury.

Yet for all their wealth, the Big House people were kind and good-natured. There were the sumptuous banquets at the house, and the vast receptions for others of like status, at which etiquette reigned supreme as dignitaries held forth on the issues of the day.

But Lord and Lady Desart were generous to people less well off than themselves, and fair-minded in their dealings with the legions of workers and servants employed by them.

Nellie was mesmerized by Lady Desart’s refinement

Part one

and nobility of manner. The schoolgirl trembled the first time the noble woman met her. Nellie was talking to a servant girl when the Lady of the House brushed past in a corridor. Catching sight of the humble urchin in conversation with a working class maid, she called Nellie over to her.

“This pleasant woman smiled” Nellie recalled, “She patted me on the head. Then she handed me a shilling that seemed to sparkle and shine… the coin reflected the light from a huge chandelier that hung from a ceiling in a room


“My gaze wandered to the open doorway leading into that room, to a galaxy of light that shone like radiant diamonds, and to beautiful carvings and oil paintings that adorned the walls. This was another world, I thought, but not my world.”

To be continued…

(Callan in Words and Pictures is available from Amazon)

26 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024
Entrance hall of Desart Court Desart Court with front garden The grand staircase at Desart Coiurt Lady Desart

Local Cllr Pat Fitzpatrick is delighted to be returned by the people of North Kilkenny

I am thrilled and deeply honored to be reelected by the wonderful people of North Kilkenny. Your support and trust means the world to me, and I am eager to continue serving all of the communities in the area with determination and experience.

I would like to extend my heartfelt thanks to everyone who voted for me and to all who worked with me. Your belief in my work and vision for North Kilkenny is greatly appreciated. As we look ahead, there are many challenges we must face together. It is only by working collaboratively that we can achieve the betterment of our area. I am committed to addressing these challenges head-on and ensuring that North Kilkenny continues to move forward. Thank you once again for your support. Now, it's back to work for all the people of North Kilkenny!

27 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024 Advertisement

Why I ran for election

My daughter Lucy is 30. Twenty five years ago she was diagnosed with autism. I embarked on a life journey I didn’t expect and wasn’t prepared for. They were hard days at first but it got easier. My life journey has been shaped by that experience more than any other. When you have lived experience of exclusion you become sensitive to other forms of marginalisation and that’s a good thing.

Lucy’s dad, Niall, is an engineer, teacher and a weatherman. During the early noughties another concern was also occupying his mind. There was increasing concern about climate change denial emanating from some in the scientific community. There was strong evidence that these climate change deniers were bought and paid for by fossil fuel companies. He had kept a climate station in the garden since his teenage years and could see something was happening to weather patterns. He

knew how serious it was and how sinister this denial was. I began to understand that 1 or 2 degrees change didn’t mean nicer summers and these changes could be a threat to human survival as a species. When you have children you are always worried about the future. The question is what kind of world will they be trying to cope with?

We had always supported our local Friends of the Earth/Green Party Cllr and now Minister for Nature & Biodiversity, Malcom Noonan, because we admired his

disability, you learn that the law is your most effective tool for change. I joined the Green Party because I knew that the power to change laws was what would ultimately bring about the change we need and radically bring about a fairer and a more just society for all communities.

I ran for election to represent everyone in Kilkenny who cares about their children’s future, nature, clean air and clean water. I ran for everyone who wants to combat climate anxiety with climate action. We need collaborative action on waste reduction, traffic congestion, flooding on streets from changing patterns of rainfall and urgent action on the Ring Road that I and so many others actively campaigned for since 2014 and even before. We are barely any closer to achieving that essential infrastructure as we continue to drive traffic through the oldest part of our medieval city. Minister for Transport, Eamon Ryan committed last September in our County Council Chamber to supporting this and he stated he was shocked at the traffic congestion in Kilkenny. I want to thank everyone who voted for me to do this job. I will not be found wanting and will work hard for a better Kilkenny for everyone.

28 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024 Advertisement
29 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024 Advertisement

For years, it seemed like the only direction the Chinese economy could go was up. Once one of the poorest countries on Earth, China underwent an unprecedented transformation following the market- oriented reforms of China Communist Party (CCP}Chairman Deng Xiaoping, who, reminiscent of Vladimir Lenin’s short-lived New Economic Policy, opened up its state-owned markets to private enterprise. The growth kickstarted by these reforms, implemented in the 1970s, lasted well into the late 2010s. During this time, the Chinese economy consistently grew at a much faster pace than the US or Western Europe, bringing its 1.4 billion citizens from lower to middle class status.

As Chinese household income climbed, so did the demand for housing, a development that turned out to be both a blessing and a curse. China did not really have its own property market until the early 1980s when Xiaoping’s administration did away with the socialist welfare housing system that had been in place since the end of the revolution.

China’s enormous population sustained a big boom in construction projects — so big that developers and local governments willingly went into debt to finance everything. This continued until 2020, when the CCP’s current Chairman, Xi Jinping, recognising the unsustainability of the boom, passed his so-called Three Red Lines Policy, placing a cap on the amount of money developers could borrow to remain in business.

The ongoing housing crisis has visibly shaken the previously unshakable Chinese economy, bringing down real estate prices and hitting the breaks on consumer spending. Workers are leaving big cities and returning to the countryside en masse, and millions of newly built apartment complexes remain eerily empty. Economic growth has plummeted to historic lows, falling from 14% in 2007 to just 2% in 2022, leading many observers in the West to wonder whether the Chinese dragon is lying on death’s door.

Economist Daniel Rosen, a former Senior Adviser for International Economic Policy at the White House National Economic Council and active member of the Council on Foreign Relations and National Committee on USChina Relations, believes the housing crisis isn’t a misplay on the part of the Chinese government, but a natural and indeed expected obstacle on the country’s path to prosperity.

“China has come from being one of the poorest countries in the world during the beginning of its economic development to middle income today,” he told the global news website Big Think. “And when countries get to middle income, what’s needed to keep growth going changes. There generally is a period of difficult transition where old approaches to growth overstay

Why China’s economy is stumbling

their utility before countries do the hard work of changing gears.”

Rather than indicating a collapse of the Chinese economy, he believes the housing crisis serves as a signal that the country is entering a new chapter in its development. However, this does not mean the economy — or the politicians who preside over it — are going to emerge unscathed.

“Growth slowdown is permanent,” Rosen said. “There’s no elegant way out of this.”

Asked if the CCP’s response to the crisis has been effective, Rosen answered: yes and no. “If we look at the Chinese government’s work report for 2024, the policy blueprint that comes out every year, you can see Beijing intends to increase its trade surpluses, but the notion that China can export its way out of a crisis and expect other countries to tolerate it is highly problematic.”

With economic protectionism on the rise across the globe, many governments are placing hefty tariffs on Chinese imports, from consumer electronics to electric vehicles. As these tariffs rise, Chinese exports are expected to fall, obstructing Beijing’s hopes to offset its losses in the real estate market.

At the same time, Rosen believes that the CCP understands the crisis’s root cause and is taking actions to address it. “People have looked at the Three Red Lines as a

“When countries get to middle income, what’s needed to keep growth going changes...

mistake that somehow caused the stress on the property sector we’re seeing now,” he said. “I’d say the stress was inevitable and the policy was an attempt to start dealing with it. The broad strokes were entirely appropriate: There was too much debt being loaded onto the housing market.

While it’s possible to use debt to get more growth in the short term, you just can’t do that forever.”

He points to the so-called White List, a campaign that opened the credit spigot only to those construction projects that could be finished in a short time, as a step in the right direction.

Nicholas Lardy, a nonresident senior fellow at the Peterson Institute for International

Economics, is even more optimistic about China’s future.

Like Rosen, he believes the Chinese economy is not going to collapse as a result of the housing crisis, that growth will continue at a less astronomic but nonetheless consistent rate, and that the CCP is more or less making the right choices while navigating the crisis.

“I think it should have been done years ago,” he says of the Three Red Lines Policy. “The fact that they were on an unsustainable path became clear as early as 8 years ago, and they should have tried to slow it down sooner, perhaps with less severe means. But my view is: better late than never.”

Asked why the CCP did not take action sooner if they knew where they were heading, Lardy, told Big Think that “the political economy made it difficult to take the kind of steps Beijing finally took.”

He added that “there were strong vested interests in keeping the boom going,” from real estate developers building the properties to local governments selling the land to high-ranking officials taking credit for rising GDP. Bubbles only burst when overconfident buying turns into panic selling, and for a while the CCP might have thought that, by exercising its considerable control over both the economy and flow of information, they could prevent the ship from tipping over.

Still, when Beijing finally

came around to dealing with the crisis, Lardy believes that it made the right calls. “Some say they need a bigger stimulus, fiscal push, or monetaryexpansion,” he said.

“I do not agree with that. On the monetary side, I think they have gone as far as they can, given the interest rate environment they faceglobally.

“On the fiscal side, they are being a bit more expansionary than they were last year. Again, they feel constrained because the levels of overall debt relative to GDP are high, creating certain risks. To control those risks, they are accepting a lower rate of economic growth.”

Lardy’s and Rosen’s assessment of the Chinese economy contrasts sharply with those provided by reporters working for finance-oriented publications, many of whom argue China is headed for considerable economic disaster.

Lardy believes that, at least in some cases, their view is the result of misinterpreting crucial data. In a piece recently published in Foreign Affairs, he addressed what he judges as incomplete or inaccurate reporting on the Chinese economy:

“In October last year, The Economist pointed out that China’s GDP relative to the US had declined by 10% from 70-something to 60-something.

“They said, ‘China may never catch up to the US.’ I think

that’s a complete misconception.”

The problem, Lardy said, is that the reporters looked at nominal GDP, a measurement that spiked in the US but didn’t grow by much in real terms when taking into account inflation.

This, combined with the depreciation of the renminbi — a depreciation Lardy believes to be temporary — made it seem as if China was falling far behind when, in actuality, it wasn’t.

Rosen and Lardy both believe that China will survive the current housing crisis, but differ on the kinds of sacrifices its leaders will have to make.

Rosen is a bit more cautious.

“Growth cannot come from the debt- driven property sector anymore,” he says, “and officials have not yet clarified where it’s going to come from instead.”

The future of the Chinese economy, he adds, “will depend on the policy choices being made in Beijing. The best case scenario would be that leaders acknowledge the structural problems and headwinds to growth, write off some of the losses, distribute the pain in as fair a way as possible and, by doing that, work out the problems so that — after a period of maybe 0% growth lasting three to five years — the table would be set for stronger development moving forward.

“That’s a positive thing...”

The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024
Global Report
31 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024 Advertisement

The sun shone brightly on St Canice’s church on June 1st. Crowds made their way to a thanksgiving mass for the bicentenary celebrations of the church, founded in 1824.

Small groups gathered on the front steps greeting and celebrating. They spoke of the concert held in the church on the previous night. Stories of previous priests, parishioners, bishops were recalled. Laughter and happiness seemed to be the call of the day.

Priests, Friars and clergy from various churches made their way to the sacristy to prepare to celebrate the wonderful history of the church of St Canice.

Taking time to welcome everyone, pose for the odd photograph and share a laugh, was Parish priest Jim Murphy.

A Bicentenary history, researched and written by Paddy Neary was available to those in attendance.

The booklet gives a marvellous insight into the foundation of the

Courage and generosity of ancestors remembered as church celebrates bicentenary

32 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024
St Canices bicentenary celebrations
Photos: Pat Shortall church, the various parish priests who David and Paula Fitzgerald pictured with Fr Jim Murphy at the Bicentenary mass Laly Sebastian, Nobin Rebi, Liyana Sebastian and Roshna Jose attended the thanksgiving mass for the bicentenary of St Canice’s church Loreto Students Katie Lawlor and Juliette Idzikowska with Michael Holland at St Canice’s church Kerala Choir who performed at the concert at St Canice’s Pictured at the celebrations at St Canice’s church was Fr Jim Murphy P.P

St Canices bicentenary celebrations

served there and the fundraising efforts made by so many.

One interesting note was that the plan for the church was drafted by William Robertson who was born in High St. He would of course be known for his work on many churches in Kilkenny including St Canices Cathedral, Ennisnag, Clomantagh and Knocktopher. He will also be remembered for his work on such buildings as Kilkenny Gaol, The Court House, the

remodelling of Kilkenny Castle and Evans Home.

The foundation stone was laid on the feast of St Patrick 1824 by Fr James Gorman, parish priest. At the date of his death , April 18th, 1826, the sum of £1,389-17 shillings -2pence had been spent on the new building.

A record of the exact date when the church opened for public wor ship has yet to be found, but

Fr Jim Murphy said that the birth and growth of St Canices church was all about team work. “There is no strength without unity”, said

Fr Murphy said he was impressed by the unity of the parishioners who, in very difficult times when resources were scarce agreed to construct this beautiful church.

“We are indebted to our ancestors in the faith, people and priests, who have courageously and generously given us such a

treasure” continued Jim. Thanking all who contributed in various ways to the church, Fr Jim remembered the countless parishioners who crossed the threshold of the church over the last two centuries.

Concluding his homily, Fr Murphy said: “I wish to thank all who have worked so well together to prepare this lovely occasion and who have brought to light the truth- ‘Ní neart go cur le Chéile’. May the faith and hope our ancestors treasured, be enkindled and safeguarded by all of us and those coming after us” ( The Kilkenny Observer hope to reproduce Paddy Neary’s Bicentenary history in a future edition)

33 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024
St Canice’s church on Dean Street Kilkenny The icon of St Canice on bog oak. Artist: Soizick Lesaux Jim and Annette Kelly with Sheila and Sean Lynch at the St Canices Mass of Thanksgiving Michael Kelly, Fr. Tom Norris, Mayor Joe Malone , Martin Brett and John McGuinness were among the congregation at St Canice’s church Sarah and Peter Campion with Stella Doyle at St Canice;’s church Frances and Brendan Graham attending the mass of thanksgiving for the bicentenary of St Canice’s church Paddy and Margot Neary at St Canice’s church for the mass of thanksgiving Archdeacon John Murray and his wife Iren Parishioner Myles Kavanagh with Fr Willie Purcell

Funding for investment to public water supply

Local Fine Gael Cllr. John Brennan would like to thank all of the people of North Kilkenny for their loyalty and continued support. He will work hard to represent the needs of the people in North Kilkenny over the next five years.

Cllr. John Brennan is straight back to work and has welcomed recent major investment by Uisce Éireann to upgrade the public water supply for the Clogh, Moneenroe and Castlecomer supply.

Cllr. John Brennan stated that this investment is vital for the future development of housing and other projects that need to happen in the area. Cllr. John Brennan stated that further investment will need to be fast tracked to enable completion of these projects.

Cllr. John Brennan

Creative Kilkenny Cruinniú na nÓg 2024!

Get ready to ignite your imagination and celebrate creativity! Creative Kilkenny is thrilled to announce Cruinniú na nÓg 2024, a spectacular showcase of youthful innovation and artistic flair. Mark your calendars for Saturday, 15th June 2024, as we invite the vibrant young minds of our community to partake in an extraordinary array of 36 free creative activities. Unleash your potential and explore the wonders sprinkled throughout the picturesque landscapes of County Kilkenny. Don’t miss this chance to be part of a memorable journey of discovery and fun!

Cruinniú na nÓg is a celebration of youthful creativity, offering a platform for children and young people to engage in the arts within their own communities. Overseen by the Creative Ireland Kilkenny Culture and Creativity Team this initiative is supported by a network of local youth organizations, creative professionals, local libraries and community groups.

This year Cruinniú na nÓg will burst onto the scene, bringing together young comedians, basket makers, coders,

animators, musicians, circus performers, drama enthusiasts and artists. What’s in Store?

A vibrant program of events awaits children and young people across the county. The diverse program includes, a wide variety of events in each local library running from the 13th of June including circus skills, drumming, coding and Graffiti workshop at the new Mayfair Library in Kilkenny. Highlights include an exhibition of plant photography at the Butler Gallery, a series of clay workshops at The Happy Pottery, Circus, crafts and craic at Glenmore Parish hall, Song Collective Gig at the Drum Youth Centre in the MacDonagh Centre, and much more!

To discover the full array of events, download the complete program below, visit Cruinniú na nÓg website, or collect a copy from your nearest library. That’s not all! Older teens will not be left out.

The Kilkenny's Creative Communities Engagement Officer, Majella Keating, Coordinator of the events said that “Since taking up with position Kilkenny County Council, last August, I have had the pleasure of working collaboratively with groups to develop this programme of events. Without the voluntary efforts and willingness of all involved these events could not happen.”

Further information of events are available on Cruinniú na nÓg ( ie) alternatively you can download the Kilkenny app: Kilkenny Events – The Kilkenny AppCruinniú na nÓg Kilkenny is proudly organised by Kilkenny County Council Creativity Team as a part of the Creative Ireland Programme.

As Kilkenny has been designated a night time economy pilot area, additional funding has been provided to support a comprehensive line-up of events for those who want to participate in the evening and night time. Events for the 13 -18 years. These Night time events will be hosted in the Castlecomer Discovery Park and Ossory Youth centre, Desart Hall, Kilkenny. To find a listing for Cruinniú na nÓg event near you please check out https://cruinniu. events/

34 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024 News
35 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024 Advertisement

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


The black and white photograph confirmed two doors yet I could have sworn there were four so posh were we in our four wheel superbug early sixties, a gleaming turquoise with frogs’ eyes and a mirror of lustrous chrome front and back straight from Statham’s in Kilkenny. We stuttered to start, a see-saw of clutch and throttle, my father, used to the Massey Ferguson, pressed the accelerator with force and we were off brakes slammed when we reached the end of Ellen’s Lane. No stop sign then, not even a sideways glance before swinging onto the road. Good God, ,twill be the death of us!

my mother exclaimed from the front seat, Mass prayer book and beads in hand, five children, and sometimes seven, piled in behind. My sister and I being smallest rolled into a cubbyhole behind the back seat, crouched beneath the sloping window, heads bopping as we bumped over rock and rivulet down the lane. The low drag of the engine vibrating beneath us, it seemed we were travelling on the frog’s back.

The Thought Process

The thought process is not emotion

Listen and keep wishing

That a condition is a position mission

Street wise be surprised

By mercy and forgiveness

Credence searching for images

Belief hence

The Kings will reign forever

Everything has its measure

Like buried treasure

Worried but whenever the clever

Decide to weather the storm

Again you are born

Remember the burning embers

A crown of thorns

Imagination, anticipation

The King is still waiting

Impatient proclamation

The King still rules

Christmas Yules

This day when you sing Amen

Noel Cantwell

In the Father’s Hand

I awoke feeling confused and disorientated, my vision seemed blurred, and I seemed to be in a strange place. In the dim lit room I realised there was a lady sitting across from me, she seemed so angelic, it felt like she was observing and caring for me, she wore a veil. My first thought was, is it the

Blessed Virgin, our holy mother. In that moment I felt safe, I recognised peace, I was being guarded.

The lady turned out to be a Nun or a sister watching over me in recovery from my procedure. As my mouth was filled with bloodied cotton wool to fill the gap left by the extraction of six teeth, I reached in and started to pull it out as the texture was horrible and soggy,

I heard her reassuring words. Don’t, Paul, you’re ok, you’re going to be ok.

How did she know my name, I thought.

I heeded her kindness, I sensed her compassion, I believed her.

As a young six-year-old boy I remembered her gentleness and her niceness.

Five or ten minutes elapsed, and she led me out of the little room, hospital-like setting and feel with spotless floors and a smell of disinfectant.

My father was waiting for me in a waiting area. I can’t remember his face when he saw me, but I remember feeling happy he was there.

The nun asked did I want a taxi. Or maybe it was a lift, I’m not sure.

No, replied my father we’ll be grand, we’re just down the road.

As we walk out towards the road he reaches out and holds my hand as we cross. We cross and he still continues to hold my hand. This felt a bit strange but nice. It wasn’t the norm for us or, I suppose, most families in the mid-70s. I remember as we were starting to walk towards Black Mill hill, my small hand in his big strong hand, I felt proud, I looked up at him, I could feel my heart smile, if I was to speak the words in my heart as a six-year-old boy it was I LOVE MY DADDY, MY DADDY IS THE BEST.

So as were heading down for home it was like an encounter with the holy mother, God’s house just beside me. I swear when I looked up it was like the cathedral was touching the heavens, but with my father’s hand holding my hand in his, maybe it was the heavens had touched the earth.

36 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024
Poetry - Week 2
Photo TASK camera club
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Traveller pride culture is celebrated in Kilkenny

A celebration of Traveller Culture took place in the Neighbourhood Hall on Friday the 31st of May. Traveller Pride Week is an important celebration that promotes the Traveller community’s unique contribution to Irish society while combating the discrimination and prejudice Traveller's face. Every year Traveller Pride is underpinned by a theme, and this year it is ‘Hidden Voices within the Traveller Community’, - a celebration of those less heard.

The Kilkenny Traveller Community Movement with Kilkenny Leader Partnership organised the Traveller Pride events.

A Gathering

The community gathered in the Neighbourhood Hall where traditional Traveller Life in a typical 1950's scene was on showcase. This included a traditional tent with a campfire, a flat cart, a Barrell Top Wagon built by a Traveller Man, smaller wagons and flat carts, paper flowers and jewellery making tables and lots of storytelling of days long past.


Local Traveller Men came together at the Water barracks to play handball and to take part in horseshoe throwing, both sports traditionally loved by Travellers.

Poet in residence

Samantha Joyce, a local Traveller Woman worked with Butler Gallery to explore her writing with an artist from the Gallery. Samantha is a writer who seeks to reflect the world view of a young Traveller woman in her own community and wider society. Her writing reflects the themes of

38 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024
Photos: jbs photos kilkenny
Traveller pride

identity, gender, culture, and the effects of discrimination. Samantha produced a beautiful piece to read at the Traveller Pride Gathering and performed in the gallery during Traveller Pride Week.

The Kilkenny Observer caught up with Samantha Joyce, and chatted about her involvement with the written word.

Samantha explained that she has had a love for music and poetry

her whole life. “Growing up, I was massively influenced by my mother because she used to write poetry as well and that's where I then developed my interest and my love for writing”, said Samantha.

Miss Joyce started sharing her poetry just over two years ago and she definitely has grown as a writer and a poet since then. “I'm grateful to have been given so many great opportunities so

early on into my career which is incredible”, continued Samantha.

The Kilkenny based scribe said it was great to be able to share her poetry at events like Traveller Pride as it was at her first Traveller Pride event

that she recited her own work for the first time ever. After that event is where things really starting moving for her as a poet/writer.

At The Traveller Pride celebrations at The Community Hall on The Butts

I am a proud Pavee Lackeen, even though you may not see. When it comes to discrimination, it ain’t no game with me.

Green, Samantha recited ‘I am Proud to be a Traveller’ and ‘Pavee Lackeen (Traveller girl).

The poem, ‘I am proud to to be a Traveller’ was written while she was a poet in residence at Butler Gallery.

I am a proud Pavee Lackeen can’t you see?

Despite the animosity, I’m a proud Pavee Lackeen I wish the world would seek to understand me.

I am proud to be me regardless of society , and what faces me.

I know I’ve got the backing of my community.

Being individual is hard , but I will always seek to be unique in a world where being different is wrong .

I was always taught to stand out and be strong.

My life sometimes prevents me, But I will always fight for what is right

And for my right to not have to fight to be me.

In a world where my unity unites me

I strive to be the best version of Pavee Lackeen Me.

39 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024 Traveller pride
Pavee Lackeen By Samantha Joyce

Hummingbird cake

Come Dine WithMe

Prep: 30 mins

Cook: 45 mins

Plus cooling

Serves: 10-12

This spiced hummingbird cake tastes of summer, with pineapple and banana flavours, tangy cream cheese frosting and delicate edible flowers.


• 225ml vegetable oil, plus extra for the tins

• 300g self-raising flour

• ½ tsp baking powder

• 300g golden caster sugar

• 1 tsp ground cinnamon

• 2 cardamom pods, cracked open and seeds finely crushed

• whole nutmeg, for grating

• 2 very ripe bananas, mashed

• 3 medium eggs, beaten

• 150g pineapple chunks, from a can, drained and chopped

• 80g pecans, finely chopped

For the icing

• 200g full-fat soft cheese

• 150g softened, unsalted butter

• 80g runny honey

• 80g icing sugar

• 1 large orange, zested

• edible flowers and dried pineapple rings, to decorate (optional)


Heat the oven to 180C/160C fan/ gas 4. Oil two 20cm, loose-bottomed cake tins and line the bottom of each one with baking parchment.


Sieve the flour into a large mixing bowl, and add 1/2 tsp salt and the baking powder. Stir through the sugar, cinnamon, cardamom and a very good grating of nutmeg. In a separate bowl, whisk the mashed bananas through the eggs and oil until well combined. Make a well in the centre of the dry ingredients

Tomato and black bean taco salad

Prep: 20 mins

No cook

Serves: 4

Enjoy this refreshing taco salad on a warm evening when you’re craving something quick, fresh and crunchy, or as a side for a Mexican-style feast.


• 1 lime, juiced

• 12g coriander, finely chopped

• ½ tsp ground cumin

• 1 jalapeño pepper (deseeded if you prefer less heat), finely chopped

• 2 tbsp rapeseed oil

• 400g can black beans, drained and rinsed

• 200g cherry tomatoes, halved

• 1 romaine lettuce, chopped

• 198g can sweetcorn, drained

• 1 red pepper, finely chopped

• 4 crunchy taco shells

• 25g pumpkin seeds



Combine the lime juice, coriander, cumin, jalapeño and oil in a bowl. Season well.


Tip in the beans, tomatoes, lettuce, corn and red pepper. Toss to combine. Crumble in the taco shells and mix to coat everything in the dressing. Scatter over the pumpkin seeds and serve straightaway.

and tip in the wet mixture. Fold everything together until combined, then mix through the pineapple and pecans. Spoon the mixture into the tins and bake in the centre of the oven for 35-45 mins or until a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean. Leave to cool in the tins for about 10 mins before transferring to a wire rack to cool

down completely.


Meanwhile, put the soft cheese, softened butter, honey and sugar into a mixing bowl and beat together until just combined. Try not to overbeat the mixture or it will become too soft and runny. Chill for 30 mins in the fridge before using.


Put one of the cakes on a serving plate and spread with half the icing. Top with the other cake and smooth over the remaining icing. Finish with shavings of orange zest, edible flowers and dried pineapple rings, if you like. Will keep in an airtight container for up to three days.

40 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024

Patterson’s Cross in TV comeback

We all love James Patterson. That’s a scientific fact, and fortunately, Prime Video (Amazon) has teamed up with Patterson to beef up its roster of such crime dramas. That roster already includes shows like Jack Ryan and its alleged spinoff Outer Range. For those who enjoy watching the good guys outsmart the bad dudes, there’s also that force of nature called Reacher, and on a slightly less jacked note, get ready for Cross, coming soon to Amazon.

James Patterson’s Alex Cross is about to get a TV show that promises to stand apart from the films starring Morgan Freeman and Tyler Perry. And as Reacher has shown, audiences loves a protagonist who easily outwits bad guys, and Cross does so by climbing inside their noggins.

In particular, this forensic psychologist and detec-

tive is “uniquely capable of digging into the psyches of killers and their victims, in order to identify — and ultimately capture — the murderers,” according to the show’s description. And you know that this show is serious about hammering that home because, in the show’s trailer, a baddie snarls: “You’re not getting a confession. You’re not in my head.” To which Cross replies: “Oh, I’m definitely living rent free.” Boom.

Cross, of course, is a renowned character drawn by Patterson over the course of 30 plus novels. Creator Ben Watkins has crafted a first season full of pulse-pounding complexity, and Amazon has so much faith in this project that they recently renewed the original series for a second season before the show has premiered.

In a press release, Watkins celebrated:

Additionally, Amazon MGM Studios head of TV Vernon Sanders declared that audiences should expect plenty of Aldis Hodge’s take on Cross [pictured].

“Ben Watkins and his team have created something unique within the crimethriller genre that long-time fans and newcomers alike will all enjoy,” explained Sanders. “And with more than 30 novels written by Patterson featuring Alex Cross as his main protagonist, it was an easy choice to bring Cross back for a second season.”

Aldis Hodge stars as the titular Alex Cross. He will be accompanied by Isaiah Mustafa, Juanita Jennings, Alona Tal, Samantha Walkes, Jennifer Wigmore, Eloise Mumford, Ryan Eggold, Caleb Elijah, Melody Hurd, and Johnny Ray Gill.

The Season 2 cast is already coming together and

includes Wes Chatham, Matthew Lillard, and Jeanine Mason.

Somehow, Amazon hasn’t unveiled a specific release date for Cross, but expect it to drop this summer.

Says Hodge: “I am thrilled to be embarking on another chapter of Cross. Moments like this don’t happen by accident. Getting a Season 2 pick-up before our first season even drops is a huge testament and vote of confidence in the amazing work that our crew, cast, directors, writers and production team have delivered thus far.

“It’s also a direct result of the unwavering support bestowed upon us by Prime Video and our producing partners at Paramount TV Studios, Skydance and James Patterson Entertainment. I am grateful for all of the above and can’t wait to run it back even bigger and better.”

The Mallorca Files is back for new series

The Mallorca Files first made its debut on BBC One in November 2019 and its third series is due out in just a matter of months. it is understood the decision to move the programme from BBC to Prime Video is part of a push to grab a whole new audience around the globe.

It will launch on August 8. The first two series are expected to be uploaded in advance to the streaming service to allow fans to catch-up.

Eight episodes will be released in total having been recorded on the Spanish island of Mallorca between March and July of last year.

The show is led by Welsh actress Elen Rhys who plays Miranda Blake in the programme.

Fans may recognise Elen from her role as Gwen in 2011’s spine-chilling horror film Panic Room.

She stars opposite Julian Looman in the show as Max

Winter where the pair investigate crimes which take place all across the Island.

Speaking of bringing the show back for another goaround with Amazon, the show’s executive producer Ben Donald said: “Introducing global audiences to the stunning island of Mallorca and the world of Miranda and Max during the first two seasons of The Mallorca Files, was a blast.

“Elen and Julian created two engaging and loveable

to stream in the coming weekends 5

characters that found a special place in the hearts of millions of international viewers, so we are beyond thrilled to be working with Amazon MGM Studios and BBC Studios to bring the pair and their crime-solving chemistry back to screen.

“It’s wonderful that new viewers will be able to catch up on the stories to date, while the new season will see even more thrilling stories and action- packed sequences.”

1. Hit Man

Hit Man (2024) isn’t just the best Netflix original movie you can watch this month, it’s one of the streamer’s best efforts to date. From director Richard Linklater comes this wickedly funny romantic comedy that centres on Gary (Glenn Powell), a teacher who moonlights as a fake contract killer as part of a police sting operation. The game is simple: he adopts one of several personas, pretends to be an assassin for hire and then the cops step in and arrest the person looking to hire Gary’s services.

2. The Boys

Quite possibly the only cure for superhero fatigue, The Boys on Amazon is set in a version of our world where superheroes are not only real, but deeply sociopathic and owned by a corrupt corporation. While most of society is blissfully unaware of how messed up and murderous ‘Supes’ like Homelander (Antony Starr) are, a small group of vigilantes led by Billy Butcher (Karl Urban) is working behind the scenes to take them down.

Gloriously gory and profoundly profane, The Boys is a must-watch for those who have grown tired of sanitised heroes.

3. The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power Set during The Second Age (roughly 3,000 years before the events of The Hobbit), The Rings of Power on Amazon offers a look at a very different time in Middle-earth’s history. Not only do we follow a much younger Galadriel (Morfydd Clark), we also witness the re-emergence of evil in the realm with the arrival of Sauron. A show with room to grow, The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power is a journey well worth taking for Tolkein fans.

4. The Marvellous Mrs Maisel

A wonderful dramedy on Amazon that follows Miriam ‘Midge’ Maisel (Rachel Brosnahan), a young Jewish mother in the 1950s. Midge thought she had it all — a husband, two kids and a great home on New York’s Upper West Side. Midge’s world is upended when her aspiring comedian husband suddenly leaves her for another woman. Forced to reassess her life, Midge wanders onto a nightclub stage by accident and discovers she’s a bit of a stand-up comic herself, leading her to pursue a career in comedy.

5. The Wheel Of Time Fantasy author Robert Jordan’s beloved series The Wheel of Time has finally received the live-action treatment thanks to Amazon Studios, which has mostly zeroed in on the most important aspects of the 14-volume saga. Set in a world where magic exists, but only some have the power to wield it, The Wheel of Time: Seasons 1 and 2 follow Moiraine (Rosamund Pike) on her secret quest to find the prophesied Dragon Reborn, who is said to have the power to either save or destroy the world.

41 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024 Advertisement TVAdvertisement & Streaming
42 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024 Motors
43 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024 Motors

Kilkenny Sport Focus

Michael O’Leary

Thomas O'Connor

With the eyes of the Soccer world focused on Euro 2024 which gets underway in Germany tonight (Friday), one South Kilkenny man who has been enjoying a whirlwind spell is Thomas O'Connor from Tullogher.

In January 2022, Thomas joined up with Wrexham and since then he has been a central part of an adventure that has captured the public imagination particularly with the award winning television documentary Welcome to Wrexham. At time of joining the club Wrexham were playing their trade in the National League, but in the past two years they acheived promotion in consecutive seasons by winning The National League last season while this season they finished 2nd in gaining promotion to League 1.

Wrexham Football Club was bought in 2020 by Canadian actor Ryan Reynolds and

American actor Rob McElhenney, and thus began a fairytale adventure that has brought them on to greater heights both on and off the field

Welcome to Wrexham has attracted a lot of attention and plenty of positive reviews, and the Welsh Club has gained a much higher profile from beyond football as a result of the success of the documentary. The series was renewed for a fourth season in May.

Thomas got off to a positive start with Wrexham, and by the end of the 2021-2022 season he got to play in Wembley as Wrexham reached The FA Trophy Final. However, they lost 1-0 to Bromley they also lost out 5-4 to Grimbsy Town after extra-time in an epic National League Play-Off Semi-Final, but things were on an upward curve and they would get better over the following two seasons.

Thomas was part of the Wrexham Team that gained promotion back to the Football League at the end of last season with a total of 111 points, a record for the top five divisions of English League Football.

Wrexham had a great run in the FA Cup last season reaching the last 32, and Thomas was among the goalscorers as Wrexham caused a Cup shock courtesy of a 4-3 win against Championship outfit Coventry City in Round 3.

The Tullogher native was on the mark again, as The National League Club were on the verge of another famous Cup victory having led 10 man Sheffield United 3-2 deep into stoppage time. However, Republic of Ireland International John Egan grabbed a last gasp equaliser for The Blades to deny Wrexham victory before going on to win the replay 3-1. They bounced back though and their National League victory reaped rewards for the investment provided by their Millionaire owners, and they were rewarded by their own-

ers with a trip to Las Vegas as part of the celebrations.

Wrexham enjoyed another excellent Cup run this season as they reached the 4th round of the FA Cup once again, with Thomas scoring the all important goal to put them into the last 32 after they defeated Shrewsbury 1-0.

However, they had further cause for celebration as they finished runners-up to Stockport County and in the process gained promotion to League 1.

Thomas is living the dream with Wrexham, and the past two years have been his most enjoyable since making the move Cross Channel in 2015.

He joined Southampton as a 16-year-old 9 years ago, and he spent 6 years with the Saints before moving to Burton Albion in The Summer of 2021 who were managed then by former Dutch International and Premier League striker Jimmy Floyd Hasselbank.

Just over 6 months after he joined Burton Albion, the Tullogher man was on the move again joining Wrexham in

Stress, pain & the brain

Descartes was wrong – the mind and the body are not separate. There is remarkable overlap. How we feel and what we think does have a measurable, biological and chemical impact on our body. Things that occur in the body do impact on what we think and how we feel. So, in the world of pain – feelings, stress and our thoughts play a very important role.

Last week we explored the role that inflammation and stress can play in sensitising our ‘pain system’ - nerve endings become more sensitive in the presence of inflammation, making them more likely to send signals up to the brain.

There are other ways that stress and our emotional state can impact our pain system.

Fight or Flight – Seeking Safety

You could say that when we are stressed our body and mind do not feel safe - we feel under threat.

We could call stress “healthy stress” when it occurs in short, sharp bouts that are over as quickly as they come on, and don’t occur too frequently. These days, however, there is a lot of “unhealthy stress”. Longer, drawn out, repetitive stressors that arise from things like unhealthy

relationships, financial strains or other day-to-day stressors can become a problem.

Hypervigilance When we are stressed, we become more vigilant – more tuned into potential threats around us (a sound might

make us jump or something in the corner of our eye might startle us).

In a sense, we are on the lookout for danger. Any sensory information, such as things we see, hear or feel, might be perceived, subconsciously, in a more

January 2022 and since then he has revitalized his career at the Racecourse Ground where he has been part of an ongoing adventure that is still continuing.

Thomas is one of five Irish players playing with Wrexham along with former Republic of Ireland International centurion James McClean(103 caps) who joined the club in pre season last year, and the Irish involment has certaintly added increased interest here in Ireland.

2024 has been a year to remember for The O'Connor family in Tullogher. Thomas's brothers Donncha & Anthony were part of The TullogherRosbercon squad that won The Junior Club All-Ireland Final in January with Donncha playing full-back. Thomas continued the family celebration with Wrexham gaining promotion to League 1 and having been part of the fairytale story over the past two years that has become a reality, there may yet be more chapters to be written in this glorious Hollywood story.

our body. It makes sense that, when we are highly vigilant and subconsciously on the lookout for danger, our pain system (and the guard dog that is pain) may be triggered more easily than when we are relaxed and at ease. That stretch of our lower back, that pressure in our hip or that cracking joint may appear more threatening than it really is.

None of this is to say that stress is the CAUSE of pain –but it can turn up the volume, it sensitises the system and makes that guard dog more likely to bark.

Reduce Stress to Reduce Pain to Reduce Stress

As anyone who has suffered from significant pain knows – pain can be stressful. As we now know, stress tends to turn up the volume on pain. It can be a cruel cycle – with pain impacting stress which impacts pain which impacts stress, etc. etc...

threatening way. This is where pain comes into the mix.

Pain is a


Pain is, first and foremost, a protector. You could think of it like a guard dog, warning us of any potential danger in

Some good news is that, for some people suffering from pain, finding time to destress and practice relaxation techniques may reduce pain. Less pain may lead to less stress. It is another option available to us to try to reduce the impact of pain, particularly persistent pain. What do you find helps to put you at ease? We will explore some options for reducing the impact of stress in the next article.

44 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024
Chartered Physiotherapist at Nano Physiotherapy, Kilkenny WWW.NANOPHYSIO.IE Mind-body interaction has an impact on how we feel pain

Kilkenny GAA clubs and Community news



Lotto results for 4th June. Numbers drawn 13, 18, 29. 1 Jackpot Winner of €1900.

Congratulations to Noel Breen.


Congratulations to the Clara girls who featured for Kilkenny in championship action in Nowlan Park on Saturday. Rachel Whelan was on the Intermediate panel that easily accounted for Antrim in the opener. Emma Shortall, Grace Barcoe and Keara Ryan were on the senior squad that played a hard fought draw with Waterford.


Well done to Conor Phelan and John Murphy who were part of the Kilkenny backroom team on Saturday as they carried out a demolition job on Dublin in the Leinster final in Croke Park.


Clara’s Pia Langton travelled to Spain at the weekend as part of an Irish U18 team that competed at the Catalan championships. Pia finished a fantastic second in the 800m race and looks to have a huge future in her chosen sport.



Well done to the Kilkenny Senior Hurling Team on winning the Leinster Senior title on Saturday last in Croke Park with an excellent display against Dublin. It was great to see Paddy Deegan receive the Bob O’Keeffe Cup as team captain. It was also great to see Huw Lawlor, Mikey Butler, Jordan Molloy in action with Owen Lawlor while David Fogarty, Luke Hogan and Conor Heary along with Mickey Comerford also played their part in Kilkenny’s success. We can all look forward to an All Ireland semi-final now.


The Under 12 girls from O’Loughlin Gaels GAA and Camogie club were also in Croke Park at the weekend on their Camán to Croker Day. A good time was had by all.


The O’Loughlin Gaels players Laura Murphy, Laura Greene and Danielle Quigley all continue to play their part with the Kilkenny Senior Camogie team in the All Ireland championship. On Saturday last they drew with Waterford in UPMC Nowlan Park 1-13 a side.


It was another busy week on the field for O’Loughlin Gaels. The Junior hurlers qualified for the final of the Paddy Cahill Cup when they defeated Galmoy by 2-22 to 0-23 in St. John’s Park on Tuesday last while the Under 14’s beat Danesfort by 1-14 to 2-9 in the league game played on Friday last.


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 Thursday 6th to Friday 9th August. Contact Stephen Murphy to book at 085-7181325 or Stephen is 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.


There was no winner of O’Loughlin Gaels club lotto dated June 4th. Numbers drawn 3, 16, 19, 27 Bonus 1. Play now at Thank you for your continued support Promotors draw. 1. Breda c/o Ml Dreeling. 2. Seanie Browne c/o Damien O’Connell. 3. Fan Larkin c/o Ml Nolan. 4. Tom O’Shea c/o E Cleere. 5. Ber Maher c/o E Maher. 6. Martin Wall c/o Ml Nolan. 7. Kevin Cleere. 8. Ita Bolger c/o Online. 9. Nicky Preston c/o P Cleere. 10. Niamh Carroll c/o Online


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 087- 6673302 for details or to book.


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



Congratulations to local couple Terry and Mary Campion of Sart, Freshford who celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary recently. The happy couple marked the occasion with a gathering of family and friends at their home

There were double celebrations at the Campion household as the couple’s son Philip announced his engagement to Karen McGrath from Carrick on Suir and they are wished heartiest congratulations also.


Congratulations and best wishes are extended to Marie Maher Freshford and Andrew O’Neill from Limerick who were married in St.Lachtains Church on Saturday afternoon last. They held their reception afterwards in a huge marquee at their newly built home at Rathbeagh. They are wished all the very best in their newly married life together.


Two Local men David Condon and his son Gill had a great start to the season at the Dundalk show last weekend. Gill Vale charollais was 1st in the senior ram class, first in the pen of three, 2nd and 5th in the shearling ewe class and their 2nd placed shearling was tapped female reserve champion. They thanked the judge on the day and the Charollaise society and Mr. Eamon Shanahan and all involved for all their help.


Freshford Community Cafe launched its Community market two weeks ago and will be held each Saturday from 10am – 1pm selling fresh vegetables, fruit, flowers etc., and your support would be greatly appreciated. New stalls would be very welcome and anyone interested in taking a stall can contact any member of the Committee


There was a good turnout locally on Friday last for the Local land European elections.

Congratulations to Freshford sitting Councillor Mick McCarthy who was re-elected on the second count last weekend. Mick has been serving the community of Freshford and North Kilkenny for the past ten years and is wished all the best for his next stint in office.

Best wishes are extended to all the students sitting the Leaving Certificate and Junior Certificate exams at the minute in various secondary schools around the County.


It’s quite on the playing field at present as teams take a break for exams etc.

A young Local boy Jamie Kavanagh was one of a number of young hurling enthusiasts playing during the half time break in Croke Park during the Leinster hurling final on Saturday evening last.

Huge credit goes to the newly formed clean up group and FAS workers who have the facilities tip top condition and 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


St Lachtains U 12 girls played at half time in Nolan Park on Saturday during the senior camogie game Kilkenny v

Two local girls take part in the Puc Fada this week in


in u16


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 086 8629666


A fundraising charity walk will be held on Sunday the 23rd June to help raise funds for Prague House and the Loop Café. The event will commence at12.30pm from the Square and all are welcome. For more info contact Julie on 0876025881 or


St. Lachtains Church Museum and Arts Centre is open every Saturday and Sunday from 11.30 am to 4.30pm. Ionad Lachtain welcomed bilingual spoken word artist and poet Ben MacCaoilte recently.

45 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024 Community & GAA Notes
EXAMS Waterford. Gowran, they Michelle Killeen in the adult section and Caitlin Dermody section.
We welcome all GAA Club and Community notes for publication in The Kilkenny Observer email to
O’Loughlin Gaels Under 12 camogie girls enjoying their Camán to Croker day last weekend Winners in senior ram class 2nd in hogget ram class

Community & GAA Notes


St Joseph’s Young priest’s society annual pilgrimage to Knock will take place on Saturday 22nd June with bus leaving from The Square Freshford at 7.30am. Fare is €30 for adults and children €15. For more info contact Lucy Byrne on 0876322193 or Anna Rafter on 0851815571


The local split the pot draw is back in action and last week’s winner was Mamie Cleere from Woodview winning €95. The split the pot proceeds for June goes to Freshford Tidy Towns. Please support the local tidy towns. Entry cost just €2 and envelopes are available in all local shops and pubs, so be in to win.


St.Lachtains Bord na nOg held a Cake sale on Sunday last after mass in the Clubhouse as a fundraiser for the U15 team who are taking part in this year’s Feile. The organisers thank all these who donated cakes or supported the event in any way.


Freshford Town Junior side were beaten by the narrowest of margins recently when they took on Castlewarren in the Div. 1 cup final at Derdimus. Forced to field without a number of top players the boys gave a great account of themselves but were beaten by 1-0 Well done to all involved . Freshford town U 14 boys had a big win over Stoneyford recently winning 5-0 and are league champions. Well done to the boys and their management and all involved.


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



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 – Contact Mongr Kieron Kennedy on that number or on 087 25235 21 HELP FOR ALL

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 28 4342 If you can’t cope and need support text HELLO to 50808. SAMARITANWhatever 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 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



A fine battling performance in last Friday evening’s 5th round senior league fixture against Dicksboro was unravelled in a five minute spell from the 7th to the 12th minutes of the 2nd half when ‘The Boro’ drilled four goals past a helpless Eoin Larkin in the Village goal to give them an unassailable twelve point lead at 4-11 to 0-11. Before that and throughout the 1st half fortunes swayed from side to side with Dicksboro holding a 0-07 to 0-04 lead at the 24th minute. A spirited closing five minutes by James Stephens was rewarded with quality scores from Eoin Guilfoyle, Ethan Butler and two from Luke Scanlon to a single point for ‘The Boro’ which levelled the game at 0-08 each at the break. For the first 5 minutes of the 2nd half the teams traded scores at 0-11 each before the deadlock was broken by the game winning Dicksboro goal fest. Despite the disappointment the Village players showing commendable spirit continued to battle and were rewarded with a fine goal by Sean Manogue in the 15th minute but there was no let up from ‘The Boro who continued to add points to nullify the Village efforts to haul in their lead. On the positive side there were good showings by defender Micky Byrne midfielders Ross Whelan (0-03) and Ed Lauhoff (0-01), forwards Ethan Butler (0-02) and Luke Scanlon (0-02) while Niall Mullins made a welcome return from his travels lining out at centre back.


Co-ordinator Richie Manogue advises that the club’s annual golf classic has been booked with Kilkenny Golf Club for Thursday 27th and Friday 28th June. The entry fee is €240 for a team of four and covers a goody bag, plus the popular mid-round breakfast break at the 10th tee and a meal in the clubhouse on completion of the round. Richie also states that there will be excellent prizes on offer for the successful teams. As always, the club appreciates the continuing support for the enjoyable fundraising event. Contact Richie at 087 2573697 to

book your slot on the timesheet.


A hearty congratulations to the club’s U-15 “B” camogie panel who won the County E Feile final in the exhausting heat of Sunday week last in Pairc Sheamuis Stiophain. To claim the title the girls had to overcome the challenges of teams from Conahy Shamrocks, Barrow Rangers and Erin’s Own to qualify for the final against city rivals Dicksboro. In a highly competitive final the Village girls, led by captain Ellie Larkin found themselves a single point in arrears at half time. Showing great determination the James Stephens girls, despite the heat of the day, dug deep into their reserves throughout the second half and went on to claim a deserved 1-03 to 0-02 victory. For this victory and coupled with the “A” team’s narrow defeat in the recent Feile “A” final huge plaudits must be given to the camogie club’s team mentors, John Murphy, Andy Doyle, Eoin Larkin, Emer Larkin and Emmett Larkin for the work being done to promote the development of camogie in the club and parish.


Congratulations to clubman Cian Kenny and his Kilkenny team mates on winning a 76th Leinster final with a power packet display to brush aside the Dublin challenge in an all too easy 3-28 to 1-18 victory on Saturday evening in Croke Park. It was also a memorable occasion for three times GAA All-Star Peter Barry, a member of Derek Lyng’s management team.


Congratulations to Cian Kenny on his selection at midfield on the “ Team of the Week” on foot of his outstanding performance for Kilkenny in Sunday’s Leinster final triumph against Dublin in Croke Park. Also selected were his team mates Huw Lawlor, Adrian Mullen and T.J. Reid.


The 30th running of the annual Paddy Mullen minor U-18 hurling tournament will take place on Saturday 29th June in Pairc Sheamuis Stiophain. Down through the decades the hugely popular pre-championship minor tournament which honours the trojan work done by the late Paddy Mullen at under-age level in the club attracts entries from the top minor clubs from Cork, Dublin, Limerick, Wexford and Kilkenny. The family’s tournament co-ordinator Liam Mullen advises that experienced referees Owen Behan, Conor Everard, Stephen Delaney and former club star John McCormack have given commitments to officiate at the tournament.


On Saturday afternoon the Kilkenny senior Camogie team which included club stars Niamh Deely, Michelle Teehan and late substitute Sophie O’Dwyer, whose late point helped to secure a share of the points at 1-13 each in the drama filled final minutes against the 2023 All-Ireland beaten finalists, Waterford, in their 3rd round fixture in UPMC Nowlan Park. Earlier the Kilkenny Intermediate team continued their winning form with a huge 5-30 to 0-03 victory over Antrim in the 3rd round Intermediate championship fixture. The Kilkenny line-up included Village girls Tara Murphy in goal, half back Hannah Scott and half forward Aoife Cantwell. Meanwhile the James Stephens junior side enjoyed a solid 2-13 to 0-07 victory over Windgap in their 2024 Summer League fixture.


The Kilkenny Volunteer Centre has opportunities for volunteers who might like to help out in various positions with the Kilkenny Arts Festival Gallery, the Kilkenny Recreation & Sports Partnership, Kilkenny Welcome Team and Community Radio Kilkenny City over the summer months. For more detailed information on any of the above contact Kristina at www. or


Last week’s numbers were 1, 2, 9, 20. There was no winning ticket. The €40 consolation winners were Gretta Kelly, Linda O’Keeffe, Richie Drennan, Antoinette Hickey and Larry Kielty.



Cillian Dunne had a spectacular 2nd place finish in race three of the ongoing St.Abbans Summer League, well done Cillian. Seán Farrell competed in his first ever combined event at the Leinsters Combined in Tullamore. Sean competed in the 60mH, long jump, shot put and 600m to finish 8th overall in a highly competitive U13 event.

Seán took part in Tullamore alongside his relay teammates Matthew Byrne, Peter Grimley and Ross Hutton to compete in the U13 Leinster Relays. The boys placed 6th in the final, well done to all the boys. The Mile Marker race took place in Danesfort and Gowran AC had members running in 5km, 5 mile and 10 mile races. Darragh O’Dwyer was the only juvenile running in the 5km, taking time out from studying for his exams to take part. Shane Noonan had a great run to take 2nd place in the 5 mile, congrats Shane. Well done also to Matthew Ryan running in the 10mile and Eamonn Kelsey with some of the Gowran social running group who also ran in the 5 mile race.


Gowran and Region CE Scheme currently have a number of vacancies in Gowran, Goresbridge and other areas in the region. If interested, please contact the local CE office; 059 9775675



Congratulations to Mikey Carey who was part of the Kilkenny Team that easily defeated Dublin 3-28 to 1-18 in The Leinster Senior Final in Croke Park on Saturday Evening. Mikey had a good steady game as Kilkenny easily completed

the Provincial 5-in-a-row, and it was his third Leinster Senior Medal on the field of play having played in both The 2021 Final against Dublin and the 2022 Final against Galway. Kilkenny will now play their All-Ireland Semi-Final on Saturday Evening July 6th.


The Young Irelands U-12 and U-16 Juvenile Teams had a day out to remember last Saturday.

Both Teams travelled by bus to the Leinster Final, with both teams played challenge matches in Dublin before travelling to Croke Park for the match. The U16s departed Gowran at 11:30am to play Lucan Sarsfields, while the U12 boys stopped off at Na Fianna GAA for a challenge game with the host team. It was on to Croke Park afterwards, as both teams cheered on Mikey Carey and the Kilkenny Team as they ran out easy winners. A great memorable day with so many great memories.


Michael Lyng Motors Senior/Intermediate League Group B. Young Irelands Gowran 2-17

Tullogher-Rosbercon 0-14

The Young Irelands Intermediates got their first win of the Senior/Intermediate League following a 9 point win against Tullogher-Rosbercon in Gowran on Friday night. Two well taken goals by Sean Carey were the difference at half-time as they led 2-3 to 0-8.

The first goal came in the 13th minute when he timed his run to perfection to finish expertly following a pass by Cian Phelan, before the 2nd goal came in first-half injury-time. A long ball out of defence found its way through to Carey, and he displayed sublime skill to create space and strike the sliothar off the base of his hurley. Seamus Farrell and Killian Carey fired over points within seconds of the restart to stretch their advantage (2-5 to 0-8), as Young Irelands began to take control afterwards. They outscored Tullogher-Rosbercon 0-14 to 0-6 throughout in the second-half with Tommy Phelan adding 5 pointed frees, while Sean Carey (3), Jake Byrne, Jimmy Lennon and two mighty long range efforts from substitute Paddy Brennan kept the scoreboard ticking over.

Minor Hurler Jake Byrne playing at right-half-back was outstanding as he scored two long range points and also distributing top quality ball to the forwards, while fellow Minor hurler Jim Conlon also performed solidly in the other wing-back position. Defensively, they were dominant and solid throughout the second-half with Sean Farrell in particular excellent. Young Irelands will conclude their pre-season League campaign against near neighbours Clara in Gowran next Saturday night at 7.30pm.

YOUNG IRELANDS: Peter Hutchinson, Sean Middleton, Geoff Brennan, Sean Farrell, Jake Byrne (0-2), Padraig Naddy, Jim Conlon, Sean Carey (2-3), Pat Farrell, Jimmy Lennon(0-2), Seamus Farrell (0-1), Killian Carey(0-1), Cian Phelan, Tommy Phelan (0-6 all frees), Jack Brennan. SUBS: Paddy Brennan (0-2), Emmet Byrne, Charlie Fitzgerald, JUNIOR FS QUALIFY FOR LEAGUE FINAL JJ Kavanagh and Sons Junior F Hurling League Semi-Final. Young Irelands Gowran 3-16

Threecastles 2-8

The Young Irelands Junior F Team qualified for a League Final showdown against either Tullogher-Rosbercon or St. Lachtains, following an 11 point win against Threecastles on a cold evening in Gowran. The Gowran men led 2-8 to 0-3 at half-time playing with a strong wind advantage, as their dominance in the opening-half was similar to Kilkenny’s domination against Dublin in The Leinster Final. Ciaran Kavanagh was on fire in the opening 10 minutes as he grabbed 2-1. Niall Walsh’s perfectly angled ball set him up for his first goal before Sean Kehoe was provider for his second. Ciaran was unfortunate to be denied his hat-trick of goals shortly afterwards, when he was harshly penalized for over carrying while racing through on goal. Jim Conlon was a class apart, and he gave an exceptional performance as he scored 0-4 from play with three of those points coming in the first-half. Apart from his point taking, Jim was superb as he covered every acre of ground with his tireless work rate. Also on target during the first-half were Jack Blagriff (1), Paul Kinsella (2) and Sean Kehoe (free).

Young Irelands maintained their 11 point advantage by the 40th minute (2-10 to 0-5), but suddenly Threecastles grabbed a brace of goals in the 41st and 44th minutes as just 5 points now seperated the teams. 2-10 to 2-5. However, Young Irelands steadied themselves and they outscored Threecastles 1-6 to 0-3 in the final quarter. Jim Conlon added a point in the 45th minute and following a double save by goalkeeper Peter Carroll, Mikey Keating scored a delightful point to give them a 7 point cushion. 2-12 to 2-5. After Threecastles added a point, Young Irelands put the game out of their opponents with a well worked goal in the 53rd minute. Jonathan Dunphy became an increasingly influential presence throughout that final quarter, and he began the move that led to the goal. He linked up with David Langton and he sent a long ball to Mikey Keating who created space before finishing with aplomb. 3-12 to 2-6. Further points came from Paul Kinsella, while Sean Kehoe added three points including a penalty and a free as Young Irelands marched onto a League Final showdown. Young Ireland : Peter Carroll, Martin Carter, Kevin Quinlan, Michael Lennon, David Langton, Jonathan Dunphy, Kieran Phelan, David Doyle, Jim Conlon (0-4), Paul Kinsella (0-4), Thomas Carroll, Jack Blagriff (0-1), Niall Walsh, Sean Kehoe (0-5 0-3 frees 0-1 penalty), Ciaran Kavanagh (2-1), Subs: Jake Byrne, Jack Kennedy Byrne, Mikey Keating (1-1), Jody Foley, Stephen Heffernan, PRIMARY SCHOOL BOYS IMPRESSIVELY QUALIFY FOR FINAL

The Gowran Primary School Boys impressively qualified for

The Primary Schools Roinn A Championship Final following a 3-5 to 0-1 win away to Danesfort, and they will now play St. Canices in the decider who defeated Kilmanagh National School in a high scoring thriller. 3-15 to 3-11. They now have two Schools Finals to look forward to with a Country Cup Final also on the horizon, and they will be attempting to make amends in the two finals having lost both last year. It’s a wonderful achievement for the Primary School Boys as they reached all 8 finals possible between Hurling and Football over the past two seasons.



The Young Irelands U-14 Roinn A Team produced a very spirited performance, as they lost out narrowly 1-10 to 1-7 against John Lockes Callan in Gowran last Friday night. The Callan boys featured a share of lads involved in their Roinn A Final Feile triumph.

It was a great week for The Young Irelands U-14 B Team as they won both of their matches over the past week. On Bank Holiday Monday, they won 5-11 to 3-3 away to Conahy Shamrocks in Jenkinstown, while on Saturday morning they easily won 6-10 to 0-5 against James Stephens.


Congratulations to both Thomas Langton and Kieran Timmins who were part of The Kilkenny Team that won the Celtic Challenge Final against Tipperary in Nowlan Park on The June Bank Holiday weekend. Kilkenny won 1-18 to 1-14 as Thomas played centre-back, while Kieran was midfield alongside Team Captain Ciaran Hickey from Dunnamaggin who collected The Michael Hogan Cup afterwards.


There was a good turnout for The Young Irelands Golf Classic that took place in Gowran Park over the weekend. It’s been a busy period in Gowran Park recently for Golf Classics with The Kilkenny GAA Classic taking place, while Thomastown also hosted theirs prior to that.

CAMOGIE GIRLS DRAW WITH DEISE LADIES Steffi and Tiffanie Fitzgerald were part of The Kilkenny Squad that played out a 1-13 draw against Waterford in Nowlan Park on Saturday. That was their third game of the Championship following on from easy victories against Limerick and Antrim.

KILKENNY COUNTRY MUSIC FESTIVAL Gowran Park will host one of the great highlights of the year, The Kilkenny Country Music Festival on Sunday July 7th. Mike Denver returns once again as main headline act, while also performing are a host of acts including Olivia Douglas and Claudia Buckley who return again this year having performed last year.

Robert Mizzell is back this year having performed in Gowran Park previously, while Ray Lynam, Stacey Breen and Kelan Browne will all take to the stage this year to make their debut at The Festival. As always local musicians Peter Hutchinson and Paul Brett - Peter and Paul - will get the afternoon’s entertainment underway, while The Conquerors are backing band for the day.

James Lakes of KCLR will once again be MC. Tickets can be bought in Hennessy’s Shop, Gowran or at Gowran Pharmacy or in Kilkenny City at the following locations, Morrissey Motors, Waterford Road, open Monday to Friday 8:30 – 6p.m. and Saturday morning 10 -2pm, and also Daly Farrell Accountants across from the Friary Church 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday

For further enquiries email: or check out YOUNG IRELANDS HEALTHY CLUB

The Young Irelands All-Stars GAA team participated in their first blitz in Celbridge, marking a day filled with excitement and camaraderie. Joined by six teams from across Leinster, the event was a celebration of fun and friendship. The joy and enthusiasm were palpable, and the smiles on everyone’s faces truly captured the spirit of the day.


There was big race glory for Graiguenamanagh native Shane Foley in Gowran Park on The Bank Holiday Monday, as he partnered The Jessica Harrington trained Fleur De Chine to win the inaugural running of The €200,000 Gowran Classic. Shane has been in a rich vein of form throughout the season so far, and he will feel confident of further glory with feature races both to come both sides of The Irish Sea over the next few months.



Should you wish to submit news items, club events, announcements etc you can do so by emailing them to Deadline is Saturday 6pm.


Jackpot now stands at €20,000.numbers drawn on 4/06 /24 were 1, 17, 18, 31 and there was no winner. The following won €30 each Noreen Hennesy, Ann Marie Byrne, Frank and Mark Cushen, Kenneth Doyle, Anne and John Foley. Tickets are available from any club member.


The winners of the draw which was held on June 6th were, First Prize €382 Cian Dunne, 2nd Prize €50 Mary and Josh. 3rd Prize, €25, Money raised through Tidy Towns Jackpot will be used to keep the town looking well all the 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’s also join in The next Session is on tonight Friday June 8.00pm.

46 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024
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BRIDGE UNITED Congratulations to both Patrick Purcell who won K and DL Under-18 Division 1A player of the year and Ieuan Carroll who won Under-15 Division 1A player of the year. Also congratulations to Damien Raggett who won the Carlow and District Football League Seniors Division 1 player of the year. A summer soccer academy for boys and girls aged 5-14 will be held in Goresbridge on 7-9 July from 10am to 1pm. Further info 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 this Friday and the following Tuesday and in Goresbridge today, Wednesday, at 9am (note change of time). 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 garden 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.


Meeting at 7pm by the bridge. All welcome.


Weekly Friday chatting in Irish continues over a cuppa in the Goodly Barrow this 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 one child is €70 with discounts for each child after! To book please visit To find out more please contact 0876884136


Shankill Castle is now open on Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays for June, July, and August, from 11 -5pm with daily castle tours at 3pm.


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


A local group is heading to Ethiopia in August. They are collecting pairs of football boots for local teams in Ethiopia. If you have some lying around and would like to donate, you can leave them into Tar Isteach any morning.


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. Following the first meeting of the Town Teams Group last week, the following were elected to officer positions: Joe Connolly (chair), Mary Meaney (secretary), Geraldine Keating (treasurer) and Tom Healy (PRO).



Heartiest congratulations to Deirdre Cullen on her re-election to Kilkenny County Council for a further five years. We look forward to Deirdre continuing her good work in the area.


Councillor Patrick O’Neill, who did not seek re-election this time round, took to social media at the weekend to thank everyone who supported him in his 10 years as a Councillor.

“It has been a huge honour to represent my local area for so long and I can’t thank enough the people who put their faith in me across both elections. The last couple of years have been difficult to balance everything between work, farm, politics and more importantly family. I haven’t been doing the job to the best of my ability and I know it’s the right call to step away.

The 10 years have been full of highs and lows, I met many wonderful people and learned so many things. Being a politician nowadays is not easy but a very fulfilling role when you work hard and see positive change in people’s lives and the

communities you represent. There are often times when we don’t get things right but nobody enters politics to try and do wrong by people.

To my family, friends, canvassers, posterers, I couldn’t have done it without you all. Thanks again for your support throughout the years. It’s been a privilege”.


Last week John McGuinness and Deirdre Cullen visited the group and a very informative hour followed. It being election week there was much talk about matters discussed on the doorsteps during their canvases in the various areas. These included speeding, housing and health.

John and Deirdre answered queries and offered help and support where necessary. Local issues were touched on, mainly the proposed provision of a pedestrian bridge and recreation area at the river. It was suggested that a bus to serve the Kilkenny/ Bennettsbridge/ Thomastown should be provided, the older people in the community attending clinics need this facility.

Also Deirdre said that an astro turf area would be of great benefit to the sports clubs, particularly during the winter months. John McGuinness agreed that both projects would add immensely to the community and he pledged his support where possible.


No winner of Jackpot. Numbers, 1, 9, 10, 22. Consolation Prizes, Olive Morrin, Kilfane, Fionn Cody, Kilkenny, Cian Murphy, Kilkenny, Patrick O’Neill, Ballyreddin, Carmel Egan, Castlegarden.



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 MASS TIMES

Weekday masses this week -Wednesday and Friday 10.30am


Gowran Preloved Beautiful Clothes is open on Thursdays and Saturdays from to With a great selection of dresses in sizes 8 to 24. Come in and browse.


Kilkenny Volunteering has a wide range of activities needing

volunteers. In the artistic area, the following groups need people to commit to a few hours weekly.

KCAT Art and Study Centre Callan - aims to make access to Art available to people of all abilities. Looking for volunteer for Social Media/ and/ or PR Assistant and Volunteer Assistant for Art Studio. 1-2 hours required per week with six months commitment. Volunteers must be willing to learn and be over 18. Thomastown Creative Arts Festival - The festival runs from 9th – 18th of August 2024. The organisers would love to hear from volunteers who are willing to ‘jump in’ and get involved in a variety of tasks that support the festival to operate.

Kilkenny Arts Festival Gallery celebrating its 51st Anniversary is looking for Junior (14-17yrs) and Senior (18+yrs) volunteers with a passion for arts to help bring the Festival to life and create lasting memories.

Kilkenny Recreation and Sports Partnership (aka KRSP) is organising an Inclusive Summer Camp Programme for children with special needs. The camps will take place across July with certified training in June. KRSP are recruiting Adult and Junior volunteers to support the programme.


In the past two weeks, Bennettsbridge National School has played in a Quarter-final and a semi-final. First up was versus Freshford in the Allianz Cumann na mBunscoil Corn Ui Bhriain.

Playing at home Bennettsbridge opened brightly with a point from James Rohan after three minutes. Freshford hit back hard and in the next few minutes scored 1-1. The teams then matched each other with point for point leaving the halftime score Bennettsbridge 0-5, Freshford 1-5. Freshford got off to the perfect start in the second half with a goal. Bennettsbridge then got rolling with a point from Michael Ryan followed by goals from James Rohan and Robbie Dobbyn, to leave the score 2-7 each.

Bennettsbridge then tacked on two points to lead going into injury time. With the last play of the game, Freshford scored a great goal to win by a point.

In the Allianz Cumann na mBunscoil Crotty’s Pharmacy Roinn C semi-final Bennettsbridge faced off in Jenkinstown against Lisdowney. Bennettsbridge opened the scoring with a goal from James Rohan, followed quickly by a point from the same player. Lisdowney playing with a stiff breeze got into the game and started to pick off some nice scores and were in the lead 2-4 to 1-1 coming up to half/time. Bennettsbridge responded with passion and two goals from James Rohan brought the

47 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024 Community & GAA Notes
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Deirdre Cullen celebrates with her daughter Issy, following her re-election to Kilkenny County Council. Bennettsbridge U8s took part in Erin’s Own Blitz East End United Junior Team, runners-up to Freebooter’s in the Cup Final Bennettsbridge U12s gave a great performance against Freshford Tom Healy

Community & GAA Notes

H/T score to BB 3-1, Lisdowney 2-4.

Bennettsbridge started the second half with a point from Reuben Morrissey. Six successive points gave Bennettsbridge a great boost. On the score sheet were, Jack Minogue and Elliot Morrissey. Then came the score of the match, forward Reuben Morrissey caught a great ball and fed it to Jack Minogue, who in turn laid it off for Elliot Morrissey, who delivered a perfect pass which was brilliantly caught by Louis Kelly Doyle who crashed it to the net. A magnificent long range point followed by another from James Rohan completed the scoring. Final score Bennettsbridge 5-9 Lisdowney 2-4.

Credit to the Bennettsbridge defense which held Lisdowney scoreless in the second half. Goalkeeper Nathan Heuston made some telling saves, in the first half especially. The full back line of, Hugh Leacy, Fionn Hennessy, Zak Hennessy, half back line of Alannah Drea, Reuben Morrissey and Cian Mulcahy as a unit and individually were outstanding. In the other semi-final, Mullinavat beat St John’s.


Hard luck to the East End Junior Team, beaten by a strong Freebooters team in the Cup final at the weekend. The lads gave it all but it wasn’t to be. Final score Freebooters 1 East End 0



Well done to our U8s who took part in the blitz hosted by Erins Own Castlecomer they played Lisdowney, St Martins, Erins Own and Freshford. Thanks to Erins Own for hosting. Well done all!


Well done to our u12s, a great performance last weekend against Freshford. Well done boys and mentors.


Leinster Final

Congratulations to the three Blanchfield brothers who were part of the Kilkenny senior team that captured the Leinster Championship in Croke Park with a fine victory over Dublin. David had another fine game at wing back with Liam and Kevin on the panel.

Well done also to Reuben Morrissey who played at half-time during the big game. This was Reuben’s second appearance in Croke Park in recent times. Well done Reuben! Club Games

Our seniors defeated Lisdowney in the Byrne Cup. Our junior C hurlers drew away to Piltown while our junior B team defeated Glenmore to qualify for the league final. Well done to all. Best wishes to our U 14 team playing next week and to underage teams playing challenge and go games.


This year’s field day will take place on Sunday, August 18th. A great family day is in store with more details to follow.


Membership should 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.


Well done to Damien Donovon who won 159 euro, Anne and Mick Dobbyn who won 30 euro and to Sam Carroll who won 20 euro. Thanks again to all who supported.


Thanks again to all who bought and sold tickets for this year’s Piltown draw. This is an important fundraiser for the day to day running of the club and your support is greatly appreciated. Hopefully we will have a few winners again this year.



Cemetery Masses will be held on the following dates June 21st The Mill Cemetery, June 24th Clomantagh, June 25th Kildrenagh, June 26th Killahy, June 28th Graine, July 1st Tubrid, July 5th Galmoy, July 9th Johnstown (Incorporating Donoughmore and Fertagh), July 14th Crosspatrick. All Masses at 7.30pm except Crosspatrick which will be at 9am.


A trip to Foynes flying Boat and the Maureen O’Hara Museum has been arranged for Thursday July 4th. Cost €60 which includes the coach, tea and scone at Adare Heritage Centre, the entrance to the Museum and dinner at the Abbey Court Hotel, Nenagh.


A Coffee Morning is being held by the Urlingford town team on June 18th from 9am to 1pm to celebrate the opening of the remote working hub at Exit 4.


All roads lead to Johnstown on Sunday next June 16 th for the Family Field Festival at the Sports Field on the Rathdowney Road. Activities begin at 10 am and there are attractions to suit all ages, games, sports, hurling skills, fun fair and amusements, food and craft exhibition, school Violin Recital and the hightlight of the day a Kiddies Tractor Run leaving St. Kieran’s N.S, at 2.15pm. There is also a dog show with prizes in seven classes, registration from 1 to 2pm with judging at 2.30pm. €5 for first dog and €2 for other dogs. There will be a raffle on the day with great prizes, tickets on sale in all the local businesses. The evening will conclude with music by DJ Mick Glendon and live music with The Wild Rovers (cover charge €5)


Kilcooley Garden Fete will be held on Sunday June 23th at Kilcooley Church E41YY97 at 1pm, cake stall, plants, vintage

clothes, side shows, bottle stall BBQ and more. A dog show with six classes reg. 1pm and judgung at 2pm. First dog €5 other dogs €2.


The last match of the season was a win for the U15 girls Spa 1 Freebooters 0.


A huge thanks to Costigan Contractors for sponsoring a set of jerseys for the U14 team. Thanks also to Trish Orr for ordering same and adopting them to match the adult set of jerseys. No Bingo or Split the Pot this Wednesday night, but business as usual on Wednesday June 19th.


A family fun daywill be held at the centre on August 25th. Names for L.T.I.Q.Q,I, level 4 to start soon. Two new courses in Sept Office Admin and Basic Computers. Contact 0568838466.


A big congratulations to Sandra Grace on being our Match Three winner.



June 4th prize fund was €18,300. Jackpot: €16,300. Numbers drawn: 9, 19, 27, 28 bonus no 16. No winner and one match three: Thomas Kavanagh.

Five lucky dips of €20 each: Ann Burke, Des Fitzgerald, Helen Phelan, Bernie Martin, Elizabeth Kealy. Promoters prize: Centra. SET DANCING

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.


June 9th winner of Split the Pot is Angela Quinlan who will receive €682. Congratulations Angela 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 urlingfordnotes@ If you have any photos you wish to include, please forward them to the email address.



Mill Family Fun Day Sunday 25th August 2024, put the date in your diaries for a day of fun.

father/son bringing up the gifts and a prayer/blessing for all grandfathers and fathers present.


Congratulations to Fr Pat Murphy PP Moyne-Templetuohy on his Golden Jubilee and Fr Joe Walsh CC Thurles on his Silver Jubilee.


Garden Fete will take place at Kilcooley Abbey on Sunday 23rd June at 1pm. There will be many events including Cake Stall, Raffles, Plant Stall, Side shows, Bottle stall and Teas/BBQ. The main feature will be a dog show. See posters for details. The fundraiser will be in aid of Kilcooley church.


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.


Split the Pot was cancelled last weekend. This Sunday there will be two draws, the first draw will be for the Feile 2024 and the second draw will be in support of the defribillator. Envelopes are available at the usual outlets, you can also Revolut to 0876777220. 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.


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 defibrillator’s 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.



Applications are invited for the Vacant Tenancy of a onebedroom 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 L.T.I. Names been taken for L.T.I. Q.Q.I. Level 4 due to start soon.


There will be two new courses commencing in September, Office Admin 1-2 mornings a week, Basic Computers 1-2 mornings a week. These courses will be free of charge.


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.


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


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


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.


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



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.


Cashel and Emly pilgrimage to Lough Derg will take place between 24th to the 26th June (3 days). Pilgrimage programme includes prayer and quiet reflection in bare feet, keeping 24 hour vigil and maintaining the fast. Pilgrims must be over 15 years old. Anyone interested may contact Fr Martin Murphy on 086 3868877 or Bridget O’Dea on 086 6792754.


Sunday 16th June will be acknowledged in our parish masses through prayers of the faithful, family group of grandfather/

The death has occurred of Denis Kiely, Glengoole, Thurles, who passed away on June 8th 2024. Predeceased by his parents Jimmy and Nora, his brother John and his sister Breda. Sadly missed by his brothers Michael, Jim and Gerard, sisters Mary, Sheila, Carmel and Helen, sisters in law, brothers in law, nieces, nephews, relatives, friends and neighbours. Denis reposed at his sister Sheila O’Sullivan’s residence Ballinure, last Sunday. Requiem Mass took place in St. Patrick and Oliver Church, Glengoole, followed by burial in Ballinalacken Cemetery. May he rest in peace.


The death has occurred of Isabel Ann Hogan (née Coman), Graiguepaudeen, Urlingford, Thurles, June 7th. 2024, peacefully at home surrounded by her loving family. Predeceased by her dad John. Sadly missed and lovingly remembered by her heartbroken husband Liam, her adored children Adam, Sèan, Conor and Amy, mother Mary, sisters Tara, Paula and Breda, parents-in-law Tom and Margaret, brothers-in-law, sisters-inlaw, uncles ,aunts, nieces, nephews, cousins, extended family and a wide circle of friends. Isabel reposed at her home, Graiguepaudeen ,Urlingford, last Monday evening. Removal took place to the Church of the Sacred Heart, Gortnahoe arriving for Requiem mass. Interment took place afterwards in Fennor Cemetery. May she rest in peace.


The death has occurred of Shane McGarry, 2 Riverside Park, Urlingford, June 5th, 2024. Sadly missed by his heartbroken parents Deirdre and Pat, adoring brothers and sister Dean, Kelly and John, nephew Jayden, grandparents Pat and Theresa, uncles, aunts, cousins, extended family and a wide circle of friends. Shane reposed at Doyle’s Funeral Home last Friday evening. Removal took place last Saturday morning to the Church of the Assumption Urlingford, for Requiem mass. Interment took place afterwards in the Mill Cemetery. May he rest in peace.



Many thanks to everyone who helped with the graveyard masses on both Friday and Saturday night. Rosconnell will be held this Friday and Donaghmore the week after.


Great work has been done on the painting of the Ball wall in the GAA pitch by local artist Paul Murphy many thanks to all the volunteers who helped to prepare for the painting.


Pulling Together to save Lives will take place this summer Pat Comerford of the Seven Cross Roads together with Pat Sweeney of Achill have with the help of friends built a currach from scratch over the past 9 months and plan to row the Barrow river and Achill Bay to raise money for Teach Tom. They will row the Barrow on July 5th to 7th and Achill Sound Bay on July 19th if you wish to support go to idonate page “Pulling together to Save Lives” and you can follow the journey on Facebook. They visited with the recently set up Ballyraggets men’s shed to show the currach locally last Thursday evening. Best of Luck to them and their endeavour



The intermediate hurlers had a share of the spoils with

48 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024
We welcome all GAA Club and Community notes for publication in The Kilkenny Observer email to
Pictured last Saturday after the Leinster final win for Kilkenny are Cillian Tobin, Conall Lyng and Robbie Quinlan with Derek Lyng, Kilkenny Manager

Glenmore in the St. Canice’s Credit Union Senior/Intermediate League on Friday night last in Glenmore. After a hugely entertaining game, a late goal from Conahy helped to level the scores by the final whistle at 2-20 apiece.

Congratulations to Tom Phelan on winning another Leinster medal with Kilkenny after defeating Dublin in the Leinster Senior Hurling Final in Croke Park on Saturday last.


Well done to Róisín Phelan (Senior), Emma Mulhall, Danielle Morrissey, Ellen Gunner and Sofia Kerr (all Intermediate) who were part of the Kilkenny Senior & Intermediate panels who drew with Waterford (Senior) and defeated Antrim (Intermediate) in their respective All-Ireland Championship game on Saturday in UPMC Nowlan Park.


The numbers drawn in the most recent GAA Club Lotto were

Aghaviller Parish. Hugginstown: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday at 9.30a.m.Vigil,Saturday 15th. at 8.00p.m. Sunday 16th. at 10.00a.m. Stoneyford Wednesday at 7.00p.m. Vigil, Saturday 15th. at 6.30p.m.

Anniversary Masses, Jim Doran, Stoneyford: Mass in Stoneyford Church on Saturday 15th. at 6.300p.m. Ned and Stasia Power, Condonstown, Mass in Hugginstown on Sat 15th, at 8.00p.m. Martin Cleary, Hugginstown, Mass in Hugginstown on Sunday 16th. at 10.00a.m.

Rota (Eleventh Sunday in Ordinary Time) Readers: Stoneyford, Saturday 6.30p.m. Tony Roche. Hugginstown: Saturday 8.00p.m. John Barron, Sunday 10.00a.m. Mary Carroll. Eucharistic Ministers, Stoneyford, Saturday 6.30p.m. Bernie

Grace. Hugginstown, Saturday 8.00p.m. Mary Murphy; Sunday 10.00a.m Ruth Crowley

New Rota available for Readers and Eucharistic Ministers in Hugginstown Church. Please collect in Hugginstown Sacristy


School is seeking host families for Spanish students who will be joining their school next year. Please contact or (056) 776 8632 for more details.


12, 13 and 42. There was no jackpot winner, so the consolation prize winners were Nicky Brennan, Noah and Charlie McNamara, The Corrigan Grandchildren, Toddy Lacey and Marie Hogan. The promoter prize winners were Brian Lacey, Toddy Lacey and Helen Cahill. 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.



Diocesan Designated Liaison Person: Ms. Ailish Higgins Tel: 087 100 0232. Aghaviller Parish Representatives are: Deirdre Rohan and Catherina Roche.


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.


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.


Micheál Ó Fearghail won First Prize in the recent Active Retire-

ment Ireland Art Competition, which was held in Wexford. Congratulations from all in S.A.R.G.


The Club is holding their Annual Golf Classic and Raffle at Callan Golf Club on Friday 14th. and Saturday 15th. June. Tickets and Tee Times are available from Richie at 086 293 6205. All are welcome to join in the Clubhouse at Callan for prize giving on Saturday from 8.00p.m. Food will be served all day.


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


Aghaviller Parish and Carrickshock G. A. A. Draw: Monday 3rd. May 2024. Numbers: 16; 19; 20; 02. One Winner First 3




James Irish. SENIOR ALERT SCHEME 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 / pendant- please 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 14th June 2024
& GAA Notes
We welcome all GAA Club and Community notes for publication in The Kilkenny Observer email to
Numbers Drawn. No Jackpot Winner: €500.00. Winner, Fr. Peter Hoyne, Newmarket. €25.00 Seller
Ticket, Fr. Peter Hoyne. 3
Tommy Murphy, Breda O’Meara,
The Ball wall in the GAA pitch, Ballyragget Pat Comerford and Pat Sweeney of visited with the recently set up Ballyraggets men’s shed to show the currach. The Newly Built Currach

Hurling matters - Review Sport

2024 Leinster Senior Hurling Championship Final

Kilkenny 3-28

Dublin 1-18

Kilkenny put Dublin to the sword last Saturday evening when they crushed Micheál Donoghue’s outfit by an impressive 16 points in Croke Park and in doing so made it five provincial titles on the bounce and a 76th Bob O’Keefe Cup for the Noresiders.

POTM Adrian Mullen was at the heart of everything good about this showing from Derek Lyng’s men as the returning Shamrocks Ballyhale man showed exactly why he is so crucial to this Kilkenny team. Goals from fellow clubmen, TJ Reid (2) and Eoin Cody alongside a tremendous exhibition of point scoring ensured that the Leinster decider was a much more onesided affair than the finalists earlier meeting in Parnell Park, when just two points separated the teams at the final whistle. With Dublin sitting off another member of South Kilkenny’s finest club, this allowed Richie Reid to dictate matters from his centreback position and get on a savage amount of ball across 70+ minutes of hurling.

The holders opened the scoring inside two minutes thanks to a placed ball from TJ Reid after John Donnelly was fouled but Dublin responded immediately with a nice point from Chris Crummey who was set up by corner back Paddy Smyth. Then came what would be the first of three majors for the Marble City men. Eoin Cody emerged from a bit of a ruck and headed for goal. The 2-time former young hurler of the year gave the eyes to Conor Donohoe before gliding past the Erin’s Isle man and rifling his shot past Sean Brennan in the Dubs goal, a quality goal from a quality player. This was exactly the start Micheál Donoghue would have wanted to avoid, and it didn’t get much better throughout the remainder of the final. Billy Ryan and John Donnelly sent over quickfire points to push the Cats into an early 5-point lead at headquarters before St Vincent’s Conor Burke found space to strike his side’s second point of the evening. Adrian Mullen then turned provider and set up two classy scores for Mossy Keoghan and Cian Kenny with the Metropolitans notching one from a Donal Burke free, after Mikey Carey was blown up for a throw ball. The industrious John Donnelly then intercepted a pass before giving the sliotar to Adrian Mullen who registered the first of a hugely impressive 0-7 for the versatile AllStar. TJ then gave a nice pass to Cian Kenny and the James Stephens man rifled over his second point of the evening to extend his sides lead to seven before a pair of free’s from TJ left the scoreboard making happy reading for the Kilkenny supporters. Kilmacud’s Dara Purcell then

Mullen magnificent as Cats coast to provincial glory!

got the first ‘home’ score in some twelve minutes and Donal Burke’s 22nd minute free meant Dublin had notched consecutive scores for the first time in the 2024 provincial decider. O’Loughlin’s Huw Lawlor then hit a long pass to the roving Adrian Mullen who split the posts to highlight the ease with which those in black and amber were finding it to tag on scores. The next Dublin attack was dismantled, and Tommy Walsh struck a booming shot towards the Dublin posts. Keeper Sean Brennan rose to claim the ball, but it slipped from his grasp and the ever-alert TJ Reid swept the ball to the net. Ten minutes from half-time, Kilkenny the same number of points ahead

as their latest goal scorer’s jersey number.

The influential Adrian Mullen struck over another booming score from near halfway, but Dublin managed to register the next point, another free from Na Fianna’s Donal Burke. Then came a rare contentious moment from the Cats dominated performance. Dublin’s dangerman, Donal Burke raced clear of the Kilkenny defence, but his run to goal was halted illegally by David Blanchfield. Waterford whistler Thomas Walsh awarded a free to the Dubs, and somehow just a word of warning to the Bennettsbridge man, as many thought a black card was the likely outcome. Burke

lifted himself off the ground and dispatched the free to reduce the deficit to ten points.

A fourth point of the game then followed for Adrian Mullen but there was a blow for Lyng’s charges when Young Ireland’s Mikey Carey was forced off through injury and was replaced by Glenmore’s Shane Murphy. Not content with 0-4 to his name, Mullan fired over another sweet score which was responded to by Dara Purcell’s second of the decider. Kilkenny then hit five of the last six scores in the opening period, Mossy with two, Cian Kenny with his third of the game and number 6 for the irrepressible Adrian Mullen. The boys in blue could only muster one,

courtesy of St Jude’s Danny Sutcliffe as the short whistle sounded with the Cats fifteen points to the good. One can only imagine the shellshocked state of the Dublin changing room during the interval. Micheál Donoghue and his management team made a triple change ahead of the second half, with Paddy Doyle, Sean Currie and Fergal Whitely being replaced by Daire Gray, Darragh Power and Mark Grogan respectively. To their credit, Dublin came out with a little more fire in their bellies as the action resumed, indeed, they nearly struck an early goal, only to be denied by a nice block from


50 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024
Huw Lawlor. A brace placed balls from Donal Burke
TJ hits 2-6 in Croker cakewalk
Captain Paddy Deegan Holds aloft the Bob O Keeffe Cup Darragh Power Finds his way Blocked By Cian Kenny

Hurling matters - Review

along with a rare point from Lucan’s John Bellew gave the Captial teams supporters a tiny glimmer of hope, but you felt that a couple of goals would be needed to even plant the smallest seed of doubt in Cats minds. For Kilkenny the opening ten minutes of the second period saw them add just one point to their 2-18 on the scoreboard, a lovely score from play by the evergreen TJ Reid. Only one score but three yellow cards were picked up by hard working forwards, Adrian Mullen, Eoin Cody and TJ himself. The Cats then sent on Conahy’s Tom Phelan for Billy Ryan, who was already on a yellow card from early in the game and the Graigue Ballycallan man

fired over a trademark score, and this signaled a trio of changes to the black and amber line-up. Walter Walsh, Jordan Molloy and Conor Fogarty entered the fray in place of Adrian Mullen, Cian Kenny and Huw Lawlor as manager Derek Lyng shuffled the pack late on. St Vincents Conor Burke fired over his 3rd of the final before Walter Walsh showed great skill in picking up the sliotar before arrowing a booming effort between the Dublin posts. With 67 minutes on the clock, Eoin Murphy got a little angry. The Dubs sent a long ball in and around the house which Donal Burker collected and somehow managed to offload to the supporting Mark Grogan, who fired past the Glenmore man. Little more than consolation for the boys in blue and a nice memory for the Kilmacud player, but the reaction of Kilkenny’s All-Star keeper told you all you needed to know – his side may have been 15 points ahead, but he wanted a clean sheet, great mentality from the netminder.

Tom Phelan, who had been involved plenty since replacing Billy Ryan, then got his reward when he showed a good turn of pace before splitting the posts for a nice score. Dublin’s final point came from captain Paddy Smyth, but fittingly

final came from the legendary TJ Reid. Final score, Kilkenny 3-28, Dublin 1-18.

Kilkenny: Eoin Murphy; Tommy Walsh, Huw Lawlor, Mikey Butler; David Blanchfield (0-01), Richie Reid, Mikey Carey; Cian Kenny (0-04), Paddy Deegan; Adrian Mullen (0-07), TJ Reid (2-06, 0-03 frees), John Donnelly (0-03); Martin Keoghan (0-03), Eoin Cody (1-01), Billy Ryan (0-01).

Subs: Shane Murphy for Carey (28), Tom Phelan (0-01) for Ryan (46), Jordan Molloy for Lawlor (64), Walter Walsh (0-01) for Mullen (64), Conor Fogarty for Kenny (64).

Dublin: Seán Brennan; Paddy Smyth (0-01), Eoghan O’Donnell, John Bellew (0-01); Chris Crummey (001), Conor Donohoe, Paddy Doyle; Brian Hayes, Conor Burke (0-03); Danny Sutcliffe (0-01), Dara Purcell (0-02), Fergal Whitely; Donal Burke (0-08, 0-07 frees), Seán Currie, Ronan Hayes.

Subs: Darragh Power (0-01) for Whitely (16-17, temp), Daire Gray for Doyle (half-time), Darragh Power for Currie (half-time), Mark Grogan (1-00) for Whitely (half-time), Colin Currie for R Hayes (53), James Madden for B Hayes (62).

Referee: Thomas Walsh (Waterford).


had got through a mountain of work in the opening 35 minutes. John Donnelly then became the latest player to benefit from an Adrian Mullen assist as the Thomastown man sent over a tidy score from the middle of Croker. Na Fianna’s Donal Burke added two more points to his tally before John Donnelly struck over another lovely point after being picked out by a Paddy Deegan pass. Eoin Cody then got in on the point scoring when he showed good movement and acceleration to get away from his marker to fire over his sides 22nd point of the game. Another of Kilkenny’s impressive performers, Cian Kenny struck over his fourth point of the day before

Adrian Mullen added his final point of his 0-7 tally, in a what was a cracking shift on his return from injury to extend the Noresiders lead to a sweet sixteen points. From the restart, Dublin netminder Sean Brennan played the ball out to his captain, Paddy Smyth, but the Clontarf man wasn’t aware of this, and the Cats pounced. Adrian Mullen picked up possession and struck a pass to TJ who was unmarked, the outcome inevitable, as The Shamrocks man fired the ball past the diving Cuala keeper. Micheál Donoghue’s side notched the next two scores, points from the hard-working Conor Burke and sub Darragh Power.

Come on you boys in......There wasn’t as much singing in Croker as there was in Parnell Park a few weeks ago. This was probably Kilkenny’s most complete performance of the championship so far and boy was it needed.

The Shamrocks contingent were fantastic, hitting 3-14 between them in the rout of Micheál Donoghue’s side, while the one that gets left behind, played a blinder at centre-back. It appeared criminal that Dublin would grant the freedom of Croker to Richie Reid and Adrian Mullen, and they paid the ultimate penalty. TJ hit 2-6, including 2-3 from play, while Mullen’s magnificent 7 were, well truly magnificent! Once again, John Donnelly and Cian Kenny put in exceptional performances, notching 0-7 between them, let’s hope The Village man’s withdrawal in the second half was merely a precaution. It’s probably unfair to single out those above, as Kilkenny had great shifts from all involved.

I love the fact that Eoin Murphy wasn’t happy at the conceding of a goal, despite being home and hosed, great to see. Paddy Deegan looked like a child on Christmas Day as he waited to hoist Bob in the air. Leinster secured, now let’s focus on the bigger days ahead.

Congratulations to Derek Lyng & all involved with the Kilkenny

team. Bob is back.

51 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024
senior Team Celebrates After the Game Richie Reid And Brian Hayes In an Aerial Battle as Paddy Deegan looks on

Planning notices


RE: Planning permission is sought by Kyle Phelan for retention and completion of a dwelling house at Brownstown, Co. Kilkenny, Y34 PC98 with associated modifications of permitted development approved under planning application reference no. 031648, new percolation area & sewage treatment plant, new vehicular access from the public road and all associated site development works.

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.

Signed: Gittens Murray Architects Ltd., No. 5 William Street, Kilkenny.

Tel No: 056-7753933.


I, James E. Moylan Ltd. intend to apply to Kilkenny County Council for full planning permission to erect a cubicle house, slurry storage tanks, an over ground steel slurry storage tank, reception tank & ancillary concrete works on my lands at Caherleske, Callan, 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, Johns Street, Kilkenny during its public opening hours 9am-1pm and 2pm-4pm Monday to Friday. A submission or observation in relation to the application may be made to the Planning Authority in writing on payment of the fee prescribed fee (€20.00) within the period of 5 weeks beginning on the date of receipt by the Authority of the 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.


Planning Permission is sought by Penny Pudding Limited for development at the corner of Pennyfeather Lane and Pudding Lane, Kilkenny. The proposed site is within the City Centre Architectural Conservation Area and NIAH

Ref No. KK019-026212 is within the application site. The development will consist of: (a) clearance works on a 0.059ha site including the demolition of the existing restaurant building; (b) the construction of a six-storey hotel with setback 4th-floor level and plant room at the 5th-floor level, comprising 67no. ensuite bedrooms, hotel foyer/ reception, bar and restaurant facilities, staff facilities, and hotel service facilities; (c) vehicle set-down areas off Pudding Lane and Pennyfeather Lane; (d) 12 no. bicycle parking spaces; and (e) landscaping, drainage works; and all associated site development works to facilitate the development.

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.

Signed: Gittens Murray Architects Ltd., No. 5 William Street, Kilkenny.

Tel No: 056-7753933.



I, Marian Lennon intend to apply to Kilkenny County Council for Planning Permission to build an extension to the front and side of existing dwelling house and all associated site development works at Pigeon Park, Danesfort, 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 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 14th June 2024
Planning notices


In loving memory of Judy, late of St. Anthony’s, College Road, Kilkenny, whose anniversary occurs on June 16th.

“Words of Comfort”

Feel no guilt in laughter

I know how much you care

Feel no sorrow in a smile

That I’m not here to share

You cannot grieve forever

I would not want you to

I’d hope that you would carry on

The way you always do

So talk about the good times

And the ways you showed you care

The days we spent together

All the happiness we shared

Let the memories surround you

A word someone may say

Will suddenly re-capture

A time, an hour, a day

That brings me back as clearly

As though I am still here

And fills you with the feeling

That I am always near

For if you keep those moments

We will never be apart

And I will live forever

Locked safe within your heart

Sadly missed, never forgotten

Your loving family


In loving memory of my Uncle John Nolan 29, Lacken Drive, Kilkenny, whose anniversary occurs at this time

You’re forever in my heart

For all you were to me in life

And all the joy you brought to me

Your memory is with me in every single thought

The pain I felt of losing you Will never go away

But know that you are in my heart

Helps me through the day

Always loved, never forgotten Forever missed by your nephew Colm


17th June 2022

Sadly missed by your friend Mary Kennedy


In loving memory of Paul Ryan, 10 Greenfields, Freshford Road, Kilkenny.

You remain in our hearts always Paul

Missed and much loved

Phil, Fran, Martin, Anne, Richard and his many friends.


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. P.OB.


In loving memory of Imelda, who died on 20th May 2024, and Joseph Heffernan who died on 10th June 1993. Pinecrest, Bishop’s Hill, Co. Kilkenny

Father, we thank you for the gift of Imelda’s and Joe’s life to us. May their gentle souls rest in peace and may each one of who they loved celebrate with them in heaven. Love is patient and kind Love never ends.


Imelda’s Months Mind Mass will be celebrated in St. Canice’s Church, Dean Street at 10am on Sunday, 16th June.

53 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024 Memoriams / Miracle Prayers
A Prayer to the Blessed Virgin (never known to fail). O most beautiful flower of Mount Carmel, Fruitful vine, Splendour of Heaven, Blessed Mother of the Son of God, O Star of the sea, help me and show me herein you are my Mother. O Holy Mary Mother of God, Queen of Heaven and Earth, I humbly beseech you from the bottom of my heart to grant my request. (Pleasestaterequest).Therearenonethatcanwithstand your power. O show me herein you are my Mother. I place this cause in your hands (three times). Thank you for your mercy towards me and mine. Amen. This prayer must be said for three days and after this the request will be granted. This prayer must be published immediately. M.K.
54 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th 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 14th June 2024 Motors Classifieds
56 The Kilkenny Observer Friday 14th June 2024 Advertisement

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