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May 31, 2012



Date Published: 30-May-2012


RIC under Home Rule

Head-constable Killacky presided at a preliminary meeting of the sergeants and men at Eglinton police station on Saturday for the purpose of considering the position of the Royal Irish Constabulary under Home Rule.

Upwards of thirty men from the Galway district and West Riding were present, and the proceedings, which were private, lasted for about two hours.

It is understood that the intention of the constabulary is to send a petition setting forth their grievances to the Government, and for this purpose, the opinions of the force in each county throughout Ireland will be considered at a conference to be held at the Depot, Phoenix Park.

The Galway Force decided to send a delegate to Dublin to represent their views. They demand an increase of pay amongst the rank and file, so as to bring them on a level with other police forces throughout the United Kingdom.

During the past three months, every police force has got an increase of 15 percent in their pay, while the pay of the constabulary has been in no way improved.

A further recommendation is that for the future, the pensions be calculated on the basis of pay and allowances, and not on the basis of pay as heretofore, and that the allowances generally be increased.


Further, it is proposed that in the case of men having attained to within ten years of the maximum pension period, ten years be added to their services with a view to enabling them to retire on a full pension immediately if they so desire.

The men also feel that a redistribution of the various ranks is necessary, as the force is at present over-officered, but this will not possibly be embodied in the recommendations made.

It is worthy of note that there is a general belief that the “agitation” on behalf of the police throughout Ireland was originated by some officers at the Depot, whose allowances – which are almost as important as their salary – they feel may be reduced under the Home Rule Bill. But for this important fact, the men consider their grievances would not be put forward so persistently for redress at the present juncture.


Central Hospital

The Hospital and Dispensaries Committee of the Galway County Board of Health, decided to give their support to the proposal that the new Central hospital for Galway should be built in stone instead of in steel and cement.

Galway Aerodrome

The Minister for Industry and Commerce is anxious to have a permanent land aerodrome for public use provided at or near Galway City.

In a letter from the Minister read at a meeting of the Galway Conjoint Air Development Committee, it was pointed out that the proposed aerodrome should be capable of being used by arrivals in all wind directions.

Unless operation in all wind directions were possible, the aerodrome would not be likely to attract a commercial air transport company running regular air services.

Telephone kiosk

The Finance Committee of Galway County Council, at their weekly meeting, granted permission to the Minister for Posts and Telegraphs to lay an underground telegraph line alone New Line to connect with the new telephone kiosk at Nile lodge.

Abominable language

“Letters of abominable and disgraceful language and expressions such as I have never read and hope will never read in a Court again, and that language written by a young girl of seventeen years of age, I think it is a most shocking state of affairs,” said Mr. H. Hamilton, D.J., at Dunmore District Court, when charges of sending letters in obscene language through the post were made against a 17 and a 19 year-old girl were made.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Galway in Days Gone By

The way we were – Protecting archives of our past



A photo of Galway city centre from the county council's archives

People’s living conditions less than 100 years ago were frightening. We have come a long way. We talk about water charges today, but back then the local District Councils were erecting pumps for local communities and the lovely town of Mountbellew, according to Council minutes, had open sewers,” says Galway County Council archivist Patria McWalter.

Patria believes we “need to take pride in our history, and we should take the same pride in our historical records as we do in our built heritage”. When you see the wealth of material in her care, this belief makes sense.

She is in charge of caring for the rich collection of administrative records owned by Galway County Council and says “these records are as much part of our history as the Rock of Cashel is. They document our lives and our ancestors’ lives. And nobody can plan for the future unless you learn from the past, what worked and what didn’t”.

Archivists and librarians are often unfairly regarded as being dry, academic types, but that’s certainly not true of Patria. Her enthusiasm is infectious as she turns the pages of several minute books from Galway’s Rural District Councils, all of them at least 100 years old.

Part of her role involved cataloguing all the records of the Councils – Ballinasloe, Clifden, Galway, Gort, Loughrea, Mountbellew, Portumna and Tuam. These records mostly consisted of minutes of various meetings.

When she was cataloguing them she realised their worth to local historians and researchers, so she decided to compile a guide to their content. The result is For the Record: The Archives of Galway’s Rural District Councils, which will be a valuable asset to anybody with an interest in history.

Many representatives on these Councils were local personalities and several were arrested during the political upheaval of the era, she explains.

And, ushering in a new era in history, women were allowed to sit on these Rural District Councils – at the time they were not allowed to sit on County Councils.

All of this information is included in Patria’s introductory essay to the attractively produced A4 size guide, which gives a glimpse into how these Rural Councils operated and the way political thinking changed in Ireland during a short 26-year period. In the early 1900s, these Councils supported Home Rule, but by 1920, they were calling for full independence and refusing to recognise the British administration.

“I love the tone,” says Patria of the minutes from meetings. “The language was very emotive.”

That was certainly true of the Gort Rural District Council. At a meeting in 1907, following riots in Dublin at the premiere of JM Synge’s play, The Playboy of the Western World the councillors’ response was vehement. They recorded their decision to “protest most emphatically against the libellous comedy, The Playboy of the Western World, that was belched forth during the past week in the Abbey Theatre, Dublin, under the fostering care of Lady Gregory and Mr Yeats. We congratulate the good people of Dublin in howling down the gross buffoonery and immoral suggestions that are scattered throughout this scandalous performance.


For more from the archives see this week’s Tribunes here

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Real Galway flavour to intermediate club hurling battle in Birr



Date Published: 23-Jan-2013


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Athenry fail to take chances as they bow out of Junior Cup



Date Published: 29-Jan-2013

Athenry FC 1

Kilbarrack United 2

(After extra time)

For the second year in succession Athenry were done in extra time in the FAI Junior Cup as last season’s beaten finalist’s came from behind to snatch an excellent game in Moanbawn on Sunday afternoon.

On a heavy pitch that was only playable following extensive groundwork by club officials all morning, the home side were by far the better side in the opening half, but failed to take advantage of a number of opportunities that came their way.

An Alan O’Donovan penalty gave them a merited advantage just after the restart, but thereafter were on the back foot as Kilbarrack took over, but for all their pressing, the home rearguard were dealing comfortably with their forays.

However they were struck a body blow just six minutes from time, as big striker Keith Kirwan was left all alone at the far post to head the equaliser and from that point on the Dubliners were the better side.

They started off the extra time in the ascendancy and enjoying all the momentum before striking for a good winning goal on 104 minutes. A strong bench allowed them to make some necessary changes and it was not a facility that was available to Athenry manager Gabriel Glavin.

With Gary Forde and Gary Delaney out through suspension following their sending off against OLBC in the previous round, and Seamie Crowe injured, it left their bench rather threadbare with just a number of young squad players available.

Playing with the aid of the slight incline and any wind advantage going, the home side had a Connor Cannon effort on target in the opening minute, while John Meleady was just over with a flick at the other end.

Meleady then tested Andrew Walsh who saved comfortably, before the goalkeeper pulled off a brilliant double save on 14 minutes.

Firstly he went full length to push away a Meleady shot and was then back on his feet to parry David Jackson’s close-range rebound.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Sentinel.

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