“Carols By Candlelight” St Mary’s Church Thurles Tipperary Dec 14th

Carols by Candlelight 2014

“Carols by Candlelight,” the now long established ecumenical service of Christmas Carols by candlelight, returns to St Mary’s Church, Thurles, Co Tipperary this year, on Sunday next December 14th at 8.00pm sharp.

As special guests this year the St Mary’s Church of Ireland community welcome back singers and former Rock Band members “Cephas,” (Featuring Noreen, Edward (Ned) and John J. Cullinane), together with Thurles Town’s much loved tenor Mr Michael Molumby and Miss Rachel Willoughby; all under the superb musical direction of well known accomplished organist Ms Geraldine Delaney.

Of course the original idea of Carols by Candlelight first originated in south-eastern Australia, sometime in the 19th century, and was popularised in Melbourne in 1937. The tradition has since spread around the world and involves people gathering to sing carols by candlelight, accompanied usually by a band. Indeed one of the earliest forms of Carols by Candlelight began when Cornish Miners in Moonta, South Australia gathered on Christmas Eve to sing carols, lit with candles stuck to the brims of their safety helmets.

Amongst those taking part at this year’s event in Thurles will be community leaders; Mr Seamus Hanafin (Tipperary Co Councillor), Ms Joan Pollard Carew (Local published Poet), Mr John O’Shaughnessy (President Thurles Chamber), Mrs Lila Stanley (St Mary’s Church Restoration member) and Christopher J. Verling, (Rep. An Garda Síochána).

This years seated ecumenical service will be conducted by the Rev Ian Coulter, presently acting Rector of St Mary’s Church Thurles and Rev Fr Thomas Dunne, Cathedral of The Assumption, Thurles. All are invited to attend.

Note: Elderly persons are advised to attend this Christmas event early, thus ensuring seated accommodation.

The usual cup of Tea and a Biscuit or two will be provided after this Christmas event, thus enabling all those attending to “halt awhile” and chat.

Admission is free; however a charity collection will be taken up during the service.

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Upperchurch-Drombane Launch 2014 Historical Journal

UpperchurchThis year’s Upperchurch-Drombane Historical Journal will be officially launched in Upperchurch Hall this Sunday December 7th at 11.30 a.m. This is the fifth edition of the popular local publication and has the usual complement of historical records, articles, poems and photographs.
(Left Click on Image Left for larger magnification.)

Guest of honour this year will be Mr. Con Ryan of Glown, Upperchurch, whose record of activity in community affairs down through the years, is immense. Con will be joined by Mr Jimmy Duggan of Thurles, an equally tireless contributor to local activities. Jimmy will give a short talk on the history and ecosystem of bogs. The new one kilometre bog walk beside the community centre was opened just this year and excellent new interpretive signs have now been erected. Weather permitting, this talk will be given while walking around the bog. All are welcome to attend this event.

New contributors to this year’s journal will include Mr Eamon Ryan who has an interesting article on home butter making. Ms Evelyn O’Regan writes on the lives of two nuns from Drombane who were part of a group of some forty who left the Borrisoleigh area to go to Kansas in 1895. Br. Thomas Moynihan went in the opposite direction to India and his story is recounted by his nieces Margaret Hassey and Geraldine Duggan. Locals; Mr Ned Harrington and Ms Maura Armstrong have both contributed poetry.

The old reliable contributors are again led by Mr Eugene Shortt who takes us through a personal summary of parish history from the Ice Age to the new GAA dressing rooms. He also provides a list of the 133 families who lived in the towns-land of Drombane back in 1835. His brother Frankie trawls through the Civil and Down Surveys of the mid 17th century to examine the many place names no longer in use. Mr Paddy Dwyer has researched the history of the many local forges with the help of Mr Tom Stapleton and Mr Billy Clancy.

Part of the parish of Upperchurch-Drombane once belonged to the Castlefogarty estate in days gone by. Mr Thomas Fogarty explores these links and tells the tale of a member of the Fogarty family who fell foul of the Hastings born Titus Oates, latter the English perjurer who fabricated the “Popish Plot”, a supposed Catholic conspiracy to kill King Charles II. Titus Oates also inspired anti-Catholic hysteria that claimed the life of St. Oliver Plunkett.

Mr Eddie Kennedy was a world class race walker, who came from the Shanballyduff area and his remarkable story is told by Mr Tom Quinlan.

Last year Ms Joan Ryan gave an account of all the parish Priests to have ministered in Upperchurch and this year the complete list of curates is added. There are local people who can recall fifteen of them!

Mr Andy Byrne gives a history of music and musicians and also reminds us of local events held 50 to 100 years ago.

The Interment Lists relating to the local cemeteries are again added. Those who enjoyed the “Eamon an Chnoic” play two years ago will be pleased to note that the script is being published, (Act One this year and Act Two next year).

As the 2010 journal is now completely sold out it will be made available for viewing shortly in pdf format at www.upperchurch.ie.

Extra copies have been printed from subsequent years, however these are unlikely to be put on the website in the foreseeable future.

Remember the Date:- Sunday Next December 7th at 11.30 a.m.

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Upperchurch Tipperary Hosts 9th Annual Walking Weekend

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Programme of Events:

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

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

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

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World War 1 Dead Remembered In Thurles

Ecumenical Solemn Commemoration Service on the Centenary of the outbreak of WW1

“If ye break faith with us who die we shall not sleep, though poppies grow in Flanders fields.”
( Extract from the poem ‘In Flanders Fields,’ by Canadian Physician Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae.)

And the band plays Waltzing Matilda, and the old men still answer the call,
but year after year, their numbers get fewer; someday, no one will march there at all.
( Extract from the song ‘The Band Played Waltzing Matilda,’ written by Eric Bogle.)

At the very least, some 75 soldiers and their officers from Thurles and its immediate environs, saw fit to enlist in the British Army, fought and died bravely between 1914 to 1918, and indeed even later, from wounds received, after that ” war to end all wars” period of our history.

Tomorrow night (October 28th 2014) in St Mary’s Church, here in Thurles, an Ecumenical Solemn Commemoration Service on the centenary of the outbreak of the First World War (WWI) will be held, beginning at 7.30pm sharp, to which all are invited to attend. The service of Prayer, Music and Poetry will be conducted jointly by clergy representing both traditions of the Roman Catholic and Church of Ireland communities, led by Rev. Ian Coulter.

Music for the event will be provided by renowned local pianist M/s Mary Rose McNally, with special guest; composer, guitarist and much-loved folk singer M/s Nora Fogarty. Retired former aide-de-camp to H.E. the President of Ireland and Co Galway native, Commandant Michael Walsh, will give the commemorative address, with a poetry reading by Mr Shane Willoughby.

Names Of Known Thurles Area Officers and Men Who Died In and Following WW1

(Our thanks to published author Mr Tom Burnell for his research.)

Anderson John, Armstrong William Maurice (Capt) M.C., Beirne John, Bermingham Patrick, Bourke James, Brett Timothy, Butler John, Byrne Patrick, Carroll Martin, Carroll Thomas, Carty John, Cassidy John, Cleary Joseph, Cleary Patrick, Cleary Thomas, Coady Edward, Coady Joseph, Coady Richard, Coffey Michael, Cooke Henry F, Cooney David,Cummins John, Conway Denis, Cunningham John V.C., Cunningham Patrick, Cusack Oliver, Dea Patrick, Dwyer Cornelius, Egan Martin, Fitzpatrick Joseph, Gouldsborough Patrick, Griffin Thomas, Hackett Martin, Hanrahan Daniel, Hayes Daniel, Hayes Thomas, Hennessey Thomas, Horan Joseph, Jordan Denis, Kelly James, Kelly William, Kennedy, Matthew, Kiely Owen, Knox Hubert Lt Col., Knox William Lt Col., Lawyer Joseph, Maher Frank, Maher James, Maher James Bernard, Maher John, McCormack Francis, McCormack Thomas, McLoughlin James J, Meany James, Mockler Patrick, Moyler George, O’Brien Lawrence, O’Grady Patrick, O’Shea John, Power Michael, Purcell Philip, Quinlan Joseph, Ryan Andrew, Ryan James, Ryan John, Ryan Martin, Ryan Michael, Ryan Patrick, Scally Patrick, Shields Matthew, Stapleton John, Sullivan Patrick, Terry Timothy, Walsh James.

A ‘Cross of Sacrifice’ was erected in Glasnevin Cemetery, Dublin earlier this year to coincide with the centenary of the beginning of World War One and in particular to commemorate the many thousands of Irish soldiers nationally who lost their lives as a result of both World War One and World War Two.

In his speech at the dedication and unveiling of this ‘Cross of Sacrifice,’ on Thursday, July 31st 2014, President of Ireland Michael D. Higgins stated; “We cannot give back their lives to the dead, nor whole bodies to those who were wounded, or repair the grief, undo the disrespect that was sometimes shown to those who fought or their families. But we honour them all now, even if at a distance, and we do not ask, nor would it be appropriate to interrogate, their reasons for enlisting.
To all of them in their silence we offer our own silence, without judgement, and with respect for their ideals, as they knew them, and for the humanity they expressed towards each other. And we offer our sorrow too that they and their families were not given the compassion and the understanding over the decades that they should have received.
Let us now, together, cultivate memory as a tool for the living and as a sure base for the future – memory employed in the task of building peace.”

Military personnel in particular, community elected representatives and indeed all residents of the town of Thurles are invited to attend, and the short Commemoration Service will be followed by a cup of tea and some seasonal “buttered bairín breac,” plus the chance to view a rare display of primary source WWI artefacts’ pertinent to Tipperary and indeed to Thurles.

Admission is free, however a collection will be made during the service with proceeds going to the upgrading of St Mary’s War Museum. (Latter presently under re-construction and due to be reopened as a local tourist attraction on May 1st 2015 next.)

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Thurles Halloween Arts Festival 2014 Line-Up

Thurles Halloween Festival

Thurles Halloween Festival 2014

The 7th annual Thurles week-long Halloween Arts Festival begins in 7 days time from October 24th to October 31st 2014 inclusive.
Once again this year there is a wonderful festival line up, with some of the best national and international acts (All now fully confirmed) performing in our midst this year.

A continued policy of Thurles community participation is very much evident once again and with so many different forms of ‘The Arts’ taking place here in Thurles this year, both local and an anticipated large turnout of visiting public will most definitely find something for each and everyone, in this year’s diverse programme of major events.

Daily Programme of Events for Thurles Halloween Arts Festival 2014

Friday 24th October

ART“Art Exhibition.” VENUE: Cabragh Wetlands. TIME: Each Day of the Festival period – 10.00am to 5.00pm. ADMISSION: Free of Charge.
Exhibition by Artist Michael Fogarty whose work is mainly inspired by the Irish countryside. Artist will be in residence each afternoon during the festival.

BOOK LAUNCH“Rights of Succession.” VENUE: Cabragh Wetlands. TIME: 7.00pm. ADMISSION: Free of Charge.
The book, a tale of early 19th century family intrigue by author Michael Fogarty will see the author on hand to sign copies of his new book.

DRAMA“In Acting Shakespeare” – Written by and starring James DeVita. VENUE: Source Arts Centre. TIME: 8.00pm. ADMISSION: €18/€16 (concession).
“In Acting Shakespeare” expect a funny, touching and uplifting story of one man’s discovery of Shakespeare, acting and language. This is a show for anyone interested in Shakespeare or theatre. The show is followed by Q&A session with James DeVita.

Music“Whistle This,” VENUE: Bowes Pub. TIME: 9.30pm. ADMISSION: Free of Charge.
A night of culture and music with some of the Premier County’s finest singer song writers, poets and musicians in an intimate atmosphere.

MUSIC“CLEM O’ BRIEN BLUEGRASS BAND.” VENUE: Bowes Pub. TIME: 10.00pm. ADMISSION: Free of Charge.
Truly one of Ireland’s finest Bluegrass musicians, Clem O’Brien; brings his unique band to Thurles for a special performance not to be missed.

Saturday 25th October

MUSIC, FOOD & CRAFT - “SCARE IN THE SQUARE.” VENUE: Liberty Square. TIME: 12.00 noon to 4.00pm. ADMISSION: Free of Charge.
Come join us for live music, food & craft stalls, Street Entertainment, Funfair Rides and much more, as we transform Liberty square into a Halloween “Scare in the Square,” occasion. Note: This year we will be having a Halloween Scarecrow Trail around Thurles town. With the help of ‘Thurles Mens Shed'; over 25 Scarecrows will be put on display around the streets of Thurles during the duration of this years festival. We hope to grow this into a major event going forward and we hope you enjoy the creative skills of the volunteers who created these pieces of scary art.

LITERATURE“Poetry in the Making.” VENUE: Source Arts Centre. TIME: 3.00pm to 5.00pm. ADMISSION: €20.00.
This poetry workshop, run by poet Enda Wyley, is suitable for emerging poets. It aims to celebrate the power of poetry and the making of it. Participants will be encouraged to create new work of their own and to enjoy poetry by established poets, including the work of Thurles poet Dennis O’Driscoll. (Limited capacity – early booking advised. Please book directly through the Box Office on 0504/90204.)

LITERATURE“A Public Interview with John Kelly.” VENUE: Source Arts Centre. TIME: 7.00pm. ADMISSION: €10.00.
In memory of Thurles poet Dennis O’Driscoll. For many years John Kelly has been at the forefront of music and arts broadcasting in Ireland. Having presented ‘The View’ on RTÉ television for 12 seasons, and assorted programmes for BBC NI before that, John now heads up RTÉ Television’s brand new arts show ‘The Works.’ Known for his wide-ranging knowledge of music he has also presented some of the best-loved and most critically acclaimed music programmes on the Irish airwaves. From his shows on the BBC to the legendary ‘Eclectic Ballroom’ on Today FM and the award-winning ‘Mystery Train’ on RTÉ1, he has always put the music first. He currently broadcasts the ‘John Kelly Ensemble’ on RTÉ Lyric FM and ‘Radio Clash’ on RTÉ Digital Radio 2XM.

WORKSHOP“Halloween Art and Craft Workshop.” VENUE: Bookworm, Parnell Street, Thurles. TIME: 11.00am – 5.00pm. ADMISSION: €5.00 per person.
Get in the Halloween spirit, come and get creative; experience the make construction of some Halloween arts and crafts. Each workshops begin on the hour and last for 50 minutes. Note: Please book in advance – Tel: 0504/22257.

COMEDY“TOM O’ MAHONY & GUESTS.” VENUE: County Bar, Liberty Square. TIME: 10.00pm sharp. ADMISSION: Free of Charge.
Dubbed by the critics as a ‘Bad-ass of Irish comedy’ Tom starred alongside the legendary and late, great Rik Mayall on RTE’s hit comedy Damo & Ivor in 2013 and made his return in Season 2 (alongside Snatch’s Alan Ford) reprising his role as the intolerable toff ‘Tarquin.’ A finalist in RTE’s 2013 New Comedy Awards, this lad has starred in several TV adverts, (typically playing someone you wouldn’t like). In 2014 Tom played support to Nina Conti at the Cork Opera House and also Police Academy’s Michael Winslow on a nationwide tour. Playing the country’s biggest festivals, Tom supported the brilliant Stewart Francis at this year’s Vodafone Comedy Festival in Dublin. This year saw another sell-out solo show of Tom’s, “Bring on The Apocalypse” in theatres nationwide and at the Edinburgh Fringe. Tom has a weekly radio slot on Spin103.8 entitled “Mantime,” where he discusses the failings of modern blokes and how they can redeem themselves (There are a lot of stanley-knives and hammers).

Sunday 26th October

TOURS & TALKS“Cabragh Wetlands Trust Open Day.” VENUE: Cabragh Wetlands. TIME: 11.00am to 4.00pm. ADMISSION: Free of Charge.
Cabragh Wetlands invite the public of Thurles and Tipperary to an all day open event. There will be a ‘Walk and Talk’ at 11.30am which will be repeated at 2.30pm, led by volunteers and environmental experts. Find out about their work in conservation and education, and their plans for the future. Take this opportunity to view their exciting new building, have a guided walk around the wetlands or wander around at your own pace, see what they do and join them for a cup of tea. All are welcome.

MUSIC“Flamenco Guitarist John Walsh.” VENUE: Anner Hotel. TIME: 4.00pm. ADMISSION: €5.00.
John Walsh is Ireland’s leading Flamenco Guitarist and an accomplished musician and composer, performing solo since 2006. Along with performing concerts throughout Ireland together with venues in Spain and the UK, he has performed in one of the most historically important flamenco venue’s ‘El Candela’ in Madrid, as well as being the invited International Artist for the 2014 Flamenco Festival “Flamenco de Consuegra”.

MUSIC“THE TIPPERARY JUNIOR CHAMBER ORCHESTRA.” VENUE: St Mary’s Church, Thurles. TIME: 8.00pm. ADMISSION: €10.00.

PARTY- “FANCY DRESS PARTY.” VENUE: Thurles Rugby Club. TIME: 10.00pm till Late. ADMISSION: €15.00.
Thurles Rugby Club presents its annual Halloween Fancy Dress Party with live music and disco. This event is one of the highlights of the year in Thurles and we would encourage those attending to purchase your ticket as early as possible to avoid disappointment. Tickets available from Hickey’s Pub or any Rugby Club Member.

Monday 27th October

FAMILY SHOW - “Halloween Trick or Treat Party.” VENUE: Anner Hotel. TIME: 2.30pm to 4.30pm. ADMISSION: €5.00 per child & €2.00 per adult.
This annual children’s party returns with all the usual favourites. Dress up in your favourite Halloween costume and let your child enjoy a wonderful and safe spooky party. Event includes: Party food and drink, Party music & games, Barney, Bob the Builder, Peppa Pig and Friends show, Magic show, Balloon Modelling and Face painting.

Tuesday 28th October

WRITERS“A Writers Covert.” VENUE: Anner Hotel. TIME: 8.00pm. ADMISSION: Free of Charge
Writers from across Tipperary’s many regular writing groups will get together to read their own compositions and well-known writers works. This event is open to the general public, so do feel free to bring along your own work and join in. Note: Refreshments will be served.

WORKSHOP“Pumpkin Carving and Painting.” VENUE: Bookworm, Parnell Street, Thurles. TIME: 2.00pm to 3.00pm. ADMISSION: €5 per person. Note: Pumpkins will be provided. Please book in advance – Tel: 0504/22257.

WW1 COMMEMORATION“Ecumenical Thurles WW1 Memorial Service of Remembrance.” VENUE: St Mary’s Church, Thurles. TIME: 7.30pm. ADMISSION: Free of Charge, however a collection will be made during the Service with proceeds going to the St Mary’s War Museum. (Latter presently under re-construction and due to be reopened as a local tourist attraction on May 1st 2015 next.)
The Great War of 1914-1918 was so terrible and inflicted such large numbers of casualties on all sides that when it was over it was believed by many to be “The War to end all Wars”. Alas, by the end of four years of fighting from August 1914 to November 1918 many thousands of families around the world including some 72 households from Thurles were affected by this tragedy, through the wounding or loss of life of at least one of their family members.
The ceremony will begin with the naming of all 72 known Thurles WW1 soldiers who lost their lives.
Church music for this event is being provided by renowned local pianist M/s Mary Rose McNally, with special guests; music composer and much-loved Folk Singer M/s Nora Fogarty and Retd and former Aide de camp to H.E. the President of Ireland and Co Galway native, Commandant Michael Walsh, latter who will also give the commemorative address.
The remembrance service will be conducted in St Mary’s Church by the Rector Rev. Ian Coulter and will be followed by a rare display of local primary source artefacts pertinent to Tipperary participants in this Great War of 1914-1918.
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