RECORD BREAKING: A young Newport athlete came within less than a tenth of a second of breaking a 30 year old record, while her school took the overall national award for success at the All Ireland Secondary Schools Track and Field Championships which were held at Tullamore.
Another member of Newport Athletic Club took an Al Ireland Gold Medal for a personal best and Silver and Bronze Medals were also won by athletes from the area at the event.
Sharlene Mawdsley, Newport finished 0.08 of a second outside the national record in the 200 metres event, which was set 30 years ago, winning the Gold Medal after an outstanding performance. She also took the Bronze Medal in the 100 metres and was a member of the Newport School Team winners of the Gold medals in the Relay.
Maria Carey, Newport also gave a fabulous performance winning the Gold Medal in the Triple Jump and the Silver Medal in the Long Jump after a personal best of 5.5 metres. She was also a member of the Newport Gold Medal winning Relay team.
St Mary’s Secondary School, Newport won the overall award for the best school in the country - the championships were open to the 32 counties with many athletes from Northern Ireland competing - in the Junior events, which was a tremendous performance against very stiff competition from the cream of young athletes north and south.
Congratulations also to Emma Hennessy, Killoscully for a great performance at the finals where she won a Gold Medal as a member of the winning Newport Relay Team.
Another young athlete from the area won her first International Medal in Athletics over the week-end. Eimer Lynch, Killoscully was a member of the Irish team at the International Universities Athletic Championships, winners of the Silver Medals at the event, marginally behind Scotland. Eimer who has several national, regional and county awards to her credit is a student at WIT and the first from the area to be selected for a place on the Irish team in many decades.
UGANDA FUND SUCCESS: There has been an overwhelming response in support of a local woman’s effort to improve facilities for children’s education in Nakirebe, Uganda.
Before leaving for Uganda this week, Mary McCabe, Ballymackeogh, Newport described the generosity of people towards her mission of helping the children as “unbelievable” after her story of the dream that she wanted to deliver for the children gripped people near and far.
By last week-end she had received up to €6,000 in donations, far beyond her wildest expectations.
“I could not have hope for anything like that - the generosity of people has been unbelievable. I want to say a big thank you to everyone who supported the collection and the many people from all over the country who sent donations. People have been very generous”, she said.
A church gate collection at Newport, Birdhill and Toor amounted to €2,500. This has been added to by donations from schools, concerts, others fund raising events, and personal donations from people over a wide area of Tipperary and the adjoining counties, which has brought the total to around €6,000.
During a visit to the area in 2012 she found classrooms for 30-35 children having to accommodate up to 150 children.
When she walked the grounds she found over 100 four year old kindergarten children sitting on a cement floor for four hours every day. Most of the children are orphans so they board. “It was just as difficult to witness where these children sleep. Some of the children do not have beds and so are forced to sleep on the floor. This is heart-breaking as they are just children and the situation they find themselves in is no fault of their own. Their faith as a community was an inspiration and despite the fact that they have very little, it doesn’t seem to deter their deep sense of hope” said Mary
PILGRIMAGE: A pilgrimage to the shrine of Our Lady at Knock, Co Mayo will take place from the Newport and Birdhill areas on this Sunday June 16.
The bus will leave Newport at 8.15 am. There may be a few seats remaining on the bus and anyone interested can contact Mary Coffey, Cragg 061 378174 or Mary Aherne, Birdhill 061 379128.
CLEAN UP: Newport Tidy Towns Committee will hold a weekly clean up in the town commencing at 7 pm on each Monday evening over the coming weeks to ensure that the town is looking its best for adjudication in this years National Tidy Town Contest which will be taking place around the country over the coming weeks.
The town has been improving its position in the contest each year and will be hoping to make further progress with an improved score this year.
SUMMER CAMP: The Newport Summer Camp, which has been on the calendar in the area for a number of years will be held again this year. It will take place at the Gym, St Mary’s Secondary School, Newport commencing on Monday July 1 and concluding on the following Friday. More details can be had by contacting Mary O’Connor 085 1534816.
HISTORICAL SOCIETY: It is over a century since the farmers of the Newport area established a co-op creamery in the town and in recognition of that Newport Historical Society are making preparation for a publication on the Creameries in the Newport area. They would appreciate copies of photographs, butter wrappers for 1lb, 2lb or butter rolls. They would also appreciate the opportunity to photograph butter boxes, milk books or other creamery documents or dockets which may still be in existance in the area. There were several creameries scattered close to each other in Newport and the adjoining parishes around that time. The locations included Newport, Birdhill, Ballinahinch, Killoscully, Knockfune, Puckawn, Lackamore, Bunkey and Annagh. Also any documents relating to a Turf Society associated with Annaholty bog are also of interest. Please contact Michael at 087 6968487.
SUN FLOWER: Birdhill Sunflower Coffee Morning will be held at the Cooper’s, Birdhill on this Friday June 14 from 10 am to 12 noon. The organisers are also holding a cake sale. Community support will be appreciated.
THE GATHERING: Arrangements are continuing on the completion of a comprehensive programme of events to celebrate the year of the Gathering in the parish at the end of July which is just over a month away. Business people interested in having their business included in the Gathering Programme should contact the organisers as soon as possible.
CO-ORDINATOR: A vacancy exists for a Co-Ordinator - Caretaker at the Community Centre, Newport under a Community Service Programme which is financed by An Pobal. Candidates are required to be flexible in approach to the working hours which will include evenings and week-ends. Computer and IT skills are an advantage. It is necessary for candidates to be on Job Seekers Allowance or equivalent and the position is open to both male and female candidates. There is a closing date of June 14 for applications and more details can be had by contacting the Community Centre, Clonbealy, Newport.