Galway in days gone by

Scenes from the 1973 STP Galway Rally. The Rally started in Eyre Square and took in stages all around the county including Gort and Clifden. The cars and drivers were based in the car park at the Fairgreen, where the coach station is now.

1917

Motor duties not paid

At a meeting of Galway County Council, the Acting Secretary said that he had received a sheaf of letters from Mr. Kilkelly, the Council’s solicitor, from parties explaining why they considered that they should not be compelled to pay motor duties. Some of the letters stated that the owners of motor bicycles and cars had not been able to obtain petrol. Others stated that as they had not used the cars for a certain time, they should not be charged the full yearly tax.

Mr. Morris said it was hard on the man who could not use his car to have to pay.

The Chairman concurred.

Mr. P.S. McDonnell said he thought that the council would be going too far in prosecuting right, left and centre. However, as long as there was a resolution on the books, Mr. Fogarty was bound to act on it. They should be unanimous in rescinding the resolution.

Mr. McKeigue said a great many people had paid duty already, and it would not be fair to them to let the others off. Eventually, on the proposition of the Chairman, seconded by Mr. P.S. McDonnell, an order was made that no prosecutions be taken pending further instructions from the Council.

New corn mill

Mr. Winkle, of Kinvara, a gentleman who has shown a considerable amount of enterprise, and who keeps a Ford car always ready for hire, intends to open a corn mill for the district at an early date. Our readers will welcome and support all efforts at industrial revival in our local towns. We hope to afford further particulars of Mr. Winkle’s enterprise later.

1942

Corporation election

The total electorate for the Galway Corporation was 12,418 and the total poll was 6,046. Spoiled votes numbered 160 and the quota was 466. Four candidates were elected on the first county – Miss Margaret A. Ashe (Independent) (778); Mr. James Brennan (Ratepayers’ Association) (612); the Mayor, Ald. J.F. Costello (Independent) (602), and Mr. J.M. Owens (Independent) (471).

Unable to call motor vehicles into commission for the elections, many of the candidates engaged side-cars and other horse-drawn carts for the day to bring voters to the booths. Ald. MI. O’Flaherty, owner of a fleet of hackney motors, was among those who had to rely on the horse-drawn vehicle.

As the cars, all bearing the names of the candidates by whom they had been engaged, arrived outside the polling stations, other candidates and their supporters rushed to assist the voters to alight and to remind them that candidates other than those on whose cars they had come were also seeking election.

Returning thanks to those who had voted for him, Mr. Brennan referred to “one regrettable incident” which had taken place and was directed at him personally.

On the eve of the election, he said, two cards had gone through the post. On the front of one of these were the words, “Keep out Peelers, Tans and Jailers”, and on the back the words, “Help us to help you. Vote No. 1 the old Corporation.” He had spent twenty-six years in the prison service and never had come across anyone of a mind so depraved or debased as the author or the authors of that document.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.