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October 14, 2010



Date Published: {J}


Children’s Smoking Act

At the City Petty Sessions, John Flaherty, Cross-street, was charged with selling cigarettes to a boy under 14 years of age. Constable Finn swore on the 6th inst he was on duty at Kirwan’s lane. He saw a young boy named John Smyth smoking a cigarette.

He questioned him as to where he got the cigarettes, and he said it was from defendant. The young boy said his name was Curran. Witness to the boy to the house, and defendant said he did not remember selling him the cigarettes.

John Smyth swore to purchasing the cigarettes at Mr O’Flaherty’s.

Defendant: I do not remember him in the shop.

Chairman: The fine for the first offence is £2. I see lots of other boys smoking cigarettes in the town.

Chairman (to witness): How much did you buy? – A halfpenny worth.

How much did you get? – Two and a half (laughter).

Constable Finn: He told me he purchases a halfpenny worth. He got two and a half and was smoking the half first (laughter).

Chairman: He was smoking very economically (laughter). This is the first case of the kind that has been brought up here.

Chairman (to defendant): How long are you in business? – Three years.

Chairman: It is a very serious thing to be selling cigarettes to these children. I believe it is the first case that has been brought forward here under the Act.

Constable Finn: Yes.

Chairman: As it is the first offence, I will not impose a severe penalty.

Defendant was fined 2s 6d and costs.

Council damage

The Galway Urban Council had a number of boys summoned for damaging hay, their property, at Salthill.

Mr. Blake, solr., who appeared for the Urban Council, said he understood there was an application to have the cases adjourned. The cases were adjourned for three months.


Arm mangled

John McCabe, a young boy, aged about 19, who was employed by John Kelly, Renville, Oranmore, had his left arm severely mangled in a threshing machine while working on behalf of Mr. Kelly at a threshing for Mr. Bernard Healy of the same locality on Monday.

The boy was rushed immediately to the Galway Central Hospital where the arm was amputated. He is now reported to be improving. Young McCabe has been working for Mr. Kelly since he left an industrial school about a year ago.

Tenant’s apology

A tenant who was causing a disturbance and annoying other tenants in the Council’s new area in St. Brenadn’s-terrace, and who got notice to quit, wrote to the Ballinasloe Council at their meeting on Tuesday night, apologising for her conduct.

Her husband’s conduct, she said, was the whole cause of the trouble, but all the differences were now reconciled, and she asked to be allowed to remain. She enclosed a long list of tenants, her neighbours, who had, she said, now forgiven her since the last meeting when complaints were made.

The sanitary officer said many of the names on that list were obtained by fear or intimidation – all of the people in the area were afraid of the woman’s tongue. He himself lived near her, and if he could get another house, he would soon move out of the place.

The Chairman (Mr. Connolly) said there was a letter from the rev. administrator asking to give her another chance. There was now a mission on in Ballinasloe which might inspire her to change her ways and be more agreeable to her neighbours.

The Council cancelled the notice to quit for a month, during which time she was put on probation.

Lucky guard

Guard Murchadh Feiriteir, Eglinton street Station, Galway, won a prize of £100 10s in the “Sunday Independent” “Opsits” competition this week. Guard Feiriteir was in bed on Sunday morning when he was informed by some of his station companions of his luck.

He was not convinced, however, until he saw his name on the “Sunday Independent”. Naturally, he was delighted with his luck.

He told a “Connacht Tribune” representative that the third attempt which won him the prize was his third. He considers the competition amusing and instructive. He was the recipient of many hearty congratulations from his station companions.

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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