Community in Windgap fearful of downward spiral

no parish priest- Feeling almost forgotten the parishioners of Windgap still await news of the name of the new Parish Priest to take up residence in the Parochial House. Following the long delay suggestions are being mooted amongst concerned community members that a petition should be started over the June Bank Holiday to have the vacancy filled as soon as possible. The situation follows another setback in the community where the emigration of a number of players over the past eight months has seen the Hurling Club unable to field a second adult hurling team for the first time in living memory. The occasions were in both the Southern League and the Joe Walsh Cup in recent weeks. With work opportunities falling, companies downsizing, employees being let go and mortgage commitments and day to day expenses increasing, the exit trail has seen local professionals, engineers, students and trades people leave the country. Even the traditional commitment that has seen players travel home from all parts of the country and even fly in for hurling and camogie championship games does not suffice as fuel prices rise and the destination of our emigrants gets increasingly further away. Already the effects are reaching into the next generation with some National School students scheduled not to return after the summer holidays as entire families are now joining the trail in the search of employment opportunities With instant up to the minute communications local news now often arrives first from across the world as skype, twitter, facebook and texts are faster and more efficient than a chance meeting of people for a chat in the locality as the parish shops and post office are almost a memory and church gatherings do not attract the same attendances. At parish level on the Diocesan website, the priest and school principal details are almost a year out of date despite many requests to the highest level to have them changed. Only a thirty second task it re-enforces a feeling of a slow downgrading of the Windgap parish community. On the positive front the ongoing success of the various sports clubs in keeping the parish alive and active is to be lauded even if a growing percentage of the news is now coming from the former hurlers, camogie, badminton players and Handballers that are living and often lining out in Australia, Dubai, Qatar, New Zealand, Japan, France and the traditional destinations across the channel in England and the United States.

no parish priest- Feeling almost forgotten the parishioners of Windgap still await news of the name of the new Parish Priest to take up residence in the Parochial House. Following the long delay suggestions are being mooted amongst concerned community members that a petition should be started over the June Bank Holiday to have the vacancy filled as soon as possible. The situation follows another setback in the community where the emigration of a number of players over the past eight months has seen the Hurling Club unable to field a second adult hurling team for the first time in living memory. The occasions were in both the Southern League and the Joe Walsh Cup in recent weeks. With work opportunities falling, companies downsizing, employees being let go and mortgage commitments and day to day expenses increasing, the exit trail has seen local professionals, engineers, students and trades people leave the country. Even the traditional commitment that has seen players travel home from all parts of the country and even fly in for hurling and camogie championship games does not suffice as fuel prices rise and the destination of our emigrants gets increasingly further away. Already the effects are reaching into the next generation with some National School students scheduled not to return after the summer holidays as entire families are now joining the trail in the search of employment opportunities With instant up to the minute communications local news now often arrives first from across the world as skype, twitter, facebook and texts are faster and more efficient than a chance meeting of people for a chat in the locality as the parish shops and post office are almost a memory and church gatherings do not attract the same attendances. At parish level on the Diocesan website, the priest and school principal details are almost a year out of date despite many requests to the highest level to have them changed. Only a thirty second task it re-enforces a feeling of a slow downgrading of the Windgap parish community. On the positive front the ongoing success of the various sports clubs in keeping the parish alive and active is to be lauded even if a growing percentage of the news is now coming from the former hurlers, camogie, badminton players and Handballers that are living and often lining out in Australia, Dubai, Qatar, New Zealand, Japan, France and the traditional destinations across the channel in England and the United States.

GROW YOUR OWN-The next meeting of the Carrick-on-Suir group is on Wednesday May 30th at 7.00pm in Carrick-on-Suir Library. Padraig Meade will give an illustrated talk on unusual edibles. Padraig is a chef who is interested in food foraging so this should be an interesting talk and there will be a chance to taste some of the unusual foods. All are welcome for further details contact Una McDermott on 086 8523105

CLANCY FESTIVAL-Tullahought will play its part for the Clancy festival over the June bank holiday weekend when their will be music sessions in Powers Pub and the cycling tour passes through the village ion Sunday morning. The Live Music Pub Trail that includes Figgerty’s and O’Ceallachain’s sees a Ballad Session in Power’s on Friday with Paney Bartley & Pete Smith a Trad Session on Saturday with Mick McCauley & Friends and another Trad Session on Sunday as it continues its long association with the Clancy tradition..

EVENTS AND ATTRACTIONS- Elsewhere the three day Clancy Brothers Music and Arts Festival will feature a variety that includes The High Kings, Frankie Gavin, De Dannan, John Spillane and The Mandolas. Also entertainment on Kickham Street with street and live entertainment including dancing, street entertainers and face painting. There will also be an Art and Butler Trail at the Ormond Castle with Black Tom Butler, the owner in the 1500s along with medieval craft demonstrations and music and a display of swords and weaponry and falconry. The River Festival includes children’s parade & Family Fun Day, Raft Races, Duck Races, Cot Building, Basket Weaving, Face painting, Live Angling Demonstrations Street Entertainers, Arts & Craft for children, Music &Dancing and a Viking Reenactment. Elsewhere members of ‘Altan’ and Ciaran Tourisc will entertain. There will also be Music workshops on the Accordion, Fiddle, Guitar Banjo, Mandolin, Instrument Making and Repair and Singing along with a One Act Play “King of Spain’s Daughter” By Waterford Playwright Teresa Deevy

GAA CLOTHES COLLECTION-The Club is holding a clothes fundraising collection on Saturday June 9th. Further details from any committee member.

CLUB NEWS: Windgap played Ballyduff in a challenge at the pitch on Sunday morning. Co-op draw tickets are available from PJ Egan or any Committee members with the first draw taking place in early June

GOLF CLASSIC- The Clubs annual Golf Classic takes place in Callan on Friday and Saturday 6th and 7th of July. For all the details contact the Club or Golf Committee.

PRESIDENTS PRIZE-Winners in the Killamery Bridge Club Presidents game held recently were 1st Alice Lanigan, Helen Lanigan, 2nd. Stella Tennyson, Elizabeth Lanigan, 3rd. Kathleen O’Shea, Sarah Crowley, 4th. Rita Houlihan, Maureen Cantwell, 5th Paddy Reade, Phil Walsh. Best Gross Pat Arrigan, Rita Phelan.

CYCLING SPECTACLE- The second annual Carrick Wheelers one hundred miles Challenge Sportive that has proved to be one of the toughest ever cycling events in Ireland visits the area on Sunday morning. The testing route will see up to three hundred cyclists tackle some very steep climbs and descent across the south east. The route which saw mass goers and Fr Robert Staunton delay the start of Sunday mass to applaud them through Tullahought last year starts at the Carrick Swans GAA club at nine o’clock. It travels via the Cregg Road – Skough – Tullahought loop via Barnatrasna- Skough – Faugheen – Gap of Rathclarish – Glenbower – Ballypatrick – Kilcash – Slievenamon - Grangemockler- Glenbower – Kilsheelan – Tikincor climb of FBD Milk Rás fame– Nire Valley loop – Seskin Hill of Sean Kelly and Nissan Classic fame. It then visits Rathgormack for a Tea Stop and afterwards resumes by heading for Mahon Bridge and the five mile long climb on the loop – Mahon Bridge – Kilmacthomas – Carroll’s Cross – Portlaw – Curraghmore Estate where the cobbles are reminiscence of Paris Roubaix and have proved to be equally hard on both man and bike – Crehana – to finish back at Swan GAA club, Carrick on Suir. The event is only suitable current racing cyclists, fit, experienced touring cyclists, good tri-athletes wishing to test their cycling prowess to the limit and fit leisure cyclists with good bike-handling skills.

TIDY TOWNS-Work continued again on Tuesday and Wednesday evenings last week in preparation for this year’s competition. Following a meeting on Saturday evening a Tidy up of the Loop walk is scheduled for Monday evening. With judging scheduled for early June all assistance in keeping the area litter free and looking good is greatly appreciated

SCRAP COLLECTION-To assist the funding for the building of the new extension to Owning School the committee is holding a scrap collection. For further details contact any of the school committee members.

TRAINING-Abhainn Rí photography group meet fortnightly on every second Wednesday morning in Droichead Family Resource Centre at 10am. This group is open to all people interested in learning the basics on photography. The cost will be €2 per session

NOTES-Contributors and Clubs are invited to email items for publication with a name and contact number to windgapnotes@gmail.com by Sunday evenings at 6pm.