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Rooney and McCambridge tops in ‘Streets’



Date Published: 16-Aug-2012

 OVER 2,500 competitors took to the streets for the 27th Corrib Oil Streets of Galway 8k Road Race last Saturday. This event is the jewel in the crown of Galway City sporting events staged on a course that runs through the heart of the city and along the promenade, finishing at the scenic Claddagh.

Since its inception in 1986 with little over 300 runners, the ‘Streets’ event has grown from strength to strength and now attracts people from far and wide and everyone from the elite athlete to recreational joggers, walkers and those raising funds for worthy charities.

The ethos from the start has always been “sport for all”. For many, this is a very special event with a real sense of occasion as the streets are thronged with runners and walkers alike and the atmosphere is electric. This year’s race saw a competitive field with young David Rooney (Raheny Shamrocks AC ) reclaiming his title in a time of 24:01, having won in 2010 as a 22-year old in a time of 23:57. In the women’s race Maria McCambridge (Letterkenny AC) won in a time of 26:36.

Local runners did very well also, with Galway City Harriers winning both the men and women’s team events. Lots of local clubs were represented also, including Craughwell, Athenry, Galway AC. Maree AC and Galway Triathlon Club, to say nothing of the clubs from all over the country that took part.

Many participants took part in the Streets with the aim of raising much-needed funds for worthy charities. One charity CRY (Cardiac Risk in the Young) had over 250 competitors take to the streets. Galway couple Regina and Tom Power were the driving force behind this group entry, having lost two children tragically.

Their son Colm, living in Australia, organised a parallel 8k race to take place in the Southern Hemisphere at the same time.

Croi charity also had a large group of runners participate this year and have been regular contributors to the Streets of Galway for several years.

Another notable group were the On the Road Again(OTRA) group of ten athletes, organised by GCH’s Paul Fallon. OTRA is a non-profit organization that promotes the self-sufficiency of homeless populations and people suffering mental health issues by engaging them in walking and running as a means to build confidence, strength and self-esteem.

To date, marvellous effects have been seen with this group medically, physically and emotionally and they are becoming well-known and popular on the ‘road-race circuit’.

Patrick Larkin, Ger Meehan and Patrick Murphy are the only three competitors to have run every streets race and they were there in style again last Saturday.

Other groups of interest include a large family entry from the Kenny family of ‘Kenny’s Bookshops, Art Gallery and Book Bindery’, a well-established family business in Galway for over 70 years. Three generations and approximately 20 family members took to the streets this year including Des Kenny and his daughter Aisling, both of whom completed the Dublin City Marathon for the past two years.

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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Archive News

Real Galway flavour to intermediate club hurling battle in Birr



Date Published: 23-Jan-2013


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Archive News

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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