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Sports stars and celebrities donÕt know when to stop scoring



Date Published: {J}

There are currently three English international footballers and a well-known British television stars who have something to hide when it comes to affairs of the nocturnal kind. But because they have all secured what are known as super-injunctions, we may never officially know who they are.

Of course a quick recce across the web will provide you with any number of clues – although the trick with the English footballers appears to be to find one who doesn’t fit the bill of a cheating husband as opposed to one who just might.

The only ones so far ruled out are John Terry, Ashley Cole, Peter Crouch and Wayne Rooney – but only on the basis that all of them have had their dirty laundry aired in full view of the public already. Wayne is currently sulking on the bench, but what’s the bet he won’t be there for long.

As to the married TV star who slept with his ex-wife after he’d already remarried – and who is now being blackmailed by his former spouse – you can take your pick from almost anyone other than Graham Norton and Dale Winton. And that’s only because there’s women involved.

So what does all of this say about the moral standards of our rich and famous? Not a lot – but it does show that money may be able to buy you love, but it can’t guarantee you post-coital silence.

Take our mystery TV star who, like an old dog making his way back to the porch, fell back into his ex-wife’s arms when he presumably found that those faraway hills weren’t as green as he’d imagined.

But all the time it seems his original partner was just laying down a trap so that she could sell her story to one of the tabloids, making some more money and ruining her cheating ex-husband’s life in the one fell swoop.

And while divorce is rarely without rancour, this classy lady takes it to new depths, sleeping with her ex-husband and then trying to blackmail him so that his new relationship is destroyed.

There’s actually one defence for the footballers and it’s called Yorkie syndrome – because like the chocolate bar, they’re just big, rich and thick.

If you pay an under-educated semi-literate over a hundred grand a week and then make them ‘work’ (as in, kicking a football and drinking smoothies) for three hours a day, you shouldn’t be too surprised if they look for other ways to occupy their time.

There was a Manchester United Christmas party a few years ago, organised by that nuclear physicist Rio Ferdinand at which a young woman was allegedly sexually assaulted by one or more of the little Red Devils.

The fact was that Rio had hired a nightclub and a posse of strippers, and then told the wives and girlfriends that it was a lads-only night to which they were not welcome – so what did their partners think they were up to? Having a table quiz?

It’s been suggested that the reason England had such a disastrous World Cup was because so many of the team were on the point of being exposed by the tabloids as cheats. If only they’d devote half as much effort to scoring on the pitch as off it, they’d have waltzed their way into the final.

Of course they can argue that it’s actually nobody’s business whether they’re playing at home or away and in other circumstances they might be right.

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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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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