Castlecomer- Award for Post Office

Award - It was with a sense of trepidation that staff members of Castlecomer Post Office ravelled to the Heritage Hotel, Portlaoise on Sunday last.

Award - It was with a sense of trepidation that staff members of Castlecomer Post Office ravelled to the Heritage Hotel, Portlaoise on Sunday last.

Delighted by the news that they were shortlisted for an award following a survey of the busiest 300 Post Offices nationwide, what happened next was due recognition for excellent service from all of the staff at Comer P.O. In reverse order Bayside P.O. Dublin was awarded third place, Castleisland P.O. Co. Kerry second and in a hushed attendance where you could feel the tension Castlecomer Post Office were declared overall winners in the Medium to Large Contract Offices section and proud holders of the Customer Plus Post Office of the Year 2012. There to make the presentation was the C.E.O. of An Post Mr. Donal Connell. This is a new initiative within An Post. Customer Plus seeks to acknowledge and reward our best performing post offices and staff. Offices are scored on general office standards, sales performance, customer care and compliance. The Post Office in rural Ireland offers customers a wide range of products and services that can help customers manage day to day living. Services such as Billpay, state savings and banking can really help customers to do more, while innovative new products like postfone are increasing the offering available.

Senior An Post management were on the judging panel and results were closely guarded up to the announcement on Sunday. The 2013 phase of the competition is under way and another awards ceremony is planned for next year.

Anna and her staff in Castlecomer deal with all customers in an excellent manner. The level of product knowledge is very high and customer care is at the fore of all interaction in the office. This is indeed a wonderful honour for all of the staff and everyone in the community are so proud of the fantastic achievement. Take a bow Anna Mai Mullins, Sheila Fenlon and Helen Barrett.

ALL IRELAND FINAL - All roads lead to Urlingford on Saturday for the All Ireland Junior BCamogie Championship Final between Castlecomer Community School and Templemore Co. Tipperary. The throw in is timed for 2.45 p.m. and it is hoped to have strong support for the team. The match venue on the Kilkenny Tipperary border will no doubt add spice to what promises to be an absorbing contest. Lets pull out all the stops to ensure the girls get the support they deserve.

LIBRARY LATEST - Transparent Language Online is aeffective, fun and easy to use resource available to members of Kilkenny County Library to use in the Library or at home. Learn up to 80 languages, free. Ask any member of staff. Pat Brennan of Ballyragget is currently exhibiting his wonderful photography in Castlecomer Library until March 30th. He is a member of the Kilkenny Photographic Society. Well done to the children of Castlecomer who took part in the Wellie Race on New Year’s Day. They congregated in the Library last week for a prizegiving ceremony, and to hear how their fundraising went. To support Daffodil Day the Nattering Knitters will host a coffee morning and cake sale in Castlecomer Library on Thursday March 21st from 10am. There will also be a selection of merchandise on sale. Donations of cakes, buns are most welcome. Ring 4440561 for any enquiries.

A Composting Demonstration will take place in the Library on Thursday 28th March at 12 o’clock. Bernadette Moloney will also provide composting themed activities for our Toddler Group who attend at this time on Thursdays. All are welcome to this free event. Book Clubs: The Afternoon Book Club meets at 2.30 on Tuesday 26th March, and Pageturners meet on Thursday night 28th March. Librarian’s Choice: This week I have been using Oneclikdigital, and listened to Steve Job’s Biography on my phone, whether in my car or out for my walk it’s a great way to “read” a book. Ask any staff member for information on how to go about downloading a book to your PC Smart phone MP3 player etc, it’s child’s play!

PEACE IN CHRIST - An Evening of Prayer and reflection for the men of the Parish will be held onight Wednesday from 8 p.m. to 10.30 p.m. at Peace in Christ.

CASTLECOMER COMMUNITY SCHOOL NEWS - Information Night 7.30 p.m. Wednesday 17th April. QQI-Fetac Level 5 Courses (2013/2014). Work Experience in Modern Business Administration and I.T. Childcare with Special Needs. Grants are available for these courses.

CASTLECOMER – PENVENAN TWINNING COMMITTEE - French Classes for Beginners An eight week course in basic conversational French for Adult beginners will commence Week commencing April 8th. The day and venue will be advised later. These classes will be at a pace suitable for adults who have no previous French. Please contact Jerry Mullally on 087-2235442

TDA TIDINGS - Chairman Martin Carroll presided at the monthly meeting of Castlecomer Development Association in the Community Hall. The primary focus of each meeting to date has been on job creation locally and the role of the new Business Development Manager. Work is progressing on plans for the Training Centre and the Town of Food projects. A new Tús worker has been allocated to the Community Hall with specific duties to the Snooker Room which will be open nightly and supervised from 7-9 p.m. Members expressed dismay at the amount of dog fouling which is rampant throughout the town, while signage has been erected by Kilkenny County Council it is having little or no effect.

The Annual General Meeting of the Association will be held on Tuesday March 25th. All are welcome and it is hoped to have a good attendance.

ENTERTAINMENT EXTRAORDINAIRE - Please support the Concert in the Community Hall on Friday night featuring Castlecomer Male Voice Choir, Trish Carroll, Traditional Band CCS and the famous Deenside Minstrels. The curtain is up at 8 p.m. Admission is €5.

MARATHON SOS - An appeal goes out to one and all on behalf of the Friends of Castlecomer District Hospital for participants in the Mini Marathon in June. This has been a great fundraiser for the hospital and every cent raised goes back directly into patient care and comfort. All volunteers will be most welcome, transport will be provided. Contact Chris Murphy (Secretary) or Julie Mealy (Director of Nursing.)

MS. E. BRENNAN - The death has taken place in Woodside, New York of Ellen Brennan formerly of Upper Coolbawn. She emigrated to the United States some 50 years ago and was a regular visitor back home. Buriel was in New York.

DIG DEEP FOR THE GATHERING - For 300 years, until their closure in 1968, mining was the lifeblood of Castlecomer and the surrounding area. At the peak of the industry, up to 600 men risked their lives every day in the mines developed by Sir Christopher Wandsworth. Dig Deep will be a celebration of the mining industry, and its legacy. The main centre for the celebrations will be the town of Castlecomer and its Mining History Museum, located in Castlecomer Discovery Park, with events also to be held in Coon and Clogh. The Castlecomer Gathering will take place from July 26th to August 6th 2013 and will be a celebration centered but not confined to the mining heritage of the area. During the years from 1840 to 1855, 47% of the town population were given emigration assistance by the Wandesforde Estate and eventually in the 1950s the estate lands and property were sold, ending the landlord era in Castlecomer. Hundreds of coalminers were forced to emigrate to England, Canada and the US and this Gathering is reaching out to their descendants and relatives to return in 2013. Events include the Erins Own Jerry Holden GAA Tournament, Castlecomer Male Voice Choir inviting Welsh mining choirs event, Mining Museum Barbeque, Ecumenical Services, Official Launch of the Butter House in Coon , Deen Celtic soccer tournament in association with Penvenan France and also the week long photographic exhibition in Clogh. A fantastic schedule of events!

For further details, please contact the Castlecomer Gathering Committee, C/O The Enterprise Centre Castlecomer, Co. Kilkenny; email info@castlecomerenterprise.ie

GAELIC4MOTHERS & OTHERS - Erin’s Own G4M held their AGM recently and the new committee are busy preparing for the 2013 season. Now up and running since 2009 this has proved to be a great addition to the club. There are over 40 ladies involved who meet on Monday evenings between April and October in Ballycomey for some fitness and football. The ladies are delighted that coach Andy Korff who has done so much for ladies football in the club is staying with them for another season. Registration for 2013 season will take place on Monday 25th March (more details next week). The ladies would like to thank Club Chairman, Billy Moran for his continued support.

To kick start the new season the ladies are holding a” Karaoke Night” in Bollard’s on Saturday March 23rd. Admission €5 including finger food – All welcome

FRUGAL LUNCH AT THE RECTORY - There is a Frugal Lunch of bread and soup in the Rectory, Clogh Road, Castlecomer during the Wednesdays in Lent (excluding the Wednesday of Holy Week). It takes place between noon and 2 pm. You’re warmly invited to come along, have a chat, enjoy an appropriately simple Lenten lunch, and donate whatever amount you wish. Funds raised go to St Vincent de Paul and those of the parish in need.

SUPPORT IRISH ABROAD - Next weekend there will be a Church Door collection for Supporting the Irish Abroad at all masses in the Church of the Immaculate Conception. Over 85,000 Irish people emigrated in the pats two years. They need support. Since 1957 the Irish Catholic Church has established information centres in many cities in Britain and more recently in the U.S.A., Canada and Australia. Funds raised next weekend will go towards maintaining these services for our fellow citizens.

CHECK IT OUT - A new Macra Na Feirme Club is starting in the Castlecomer area. If you have an interest in sport, drama, social or agriculture then this is the club to join. Anyone interested please give Mike a call on 086 – 8359891 for more info.

QUESTIONS & ANSWERS - A table quiz will be held in Fitzpatricks Bar, Ballyragget at 9.30 p.m. on Friday night. €20 per table of 4. All proceeds are in aid of the Tidy Towns. Quizmaster Jack Dunphy will have a plethora of questions on all things topical. All are welcome.

CLUB LOTTO - Erins Own club lotto is now up to €20,000.00 Be in to win. Get your tickets from any committee members or from local shops. You can also sign up to a direct debit scheme whereby you are entered every week in the Local lotto so you don’t have to worry about getting your ticket. Contact Helen at 087 6645022 or any committee member if you would like to take up this way to play the local lotto. Remember all the money raised goes back into your community

TOWN OF FOOD - Castlecomer is one of five entries in the Kilkenny Town of Food Competition which is being rolled out by Kilkenny Leader Partnership. A committed group are working behind the scenes fine tuning the application. The town of food project has the capability to act as a driver for the development of food culture and KLP is offering a range of supports and grant aid for the successful community application.