GARDENING CLUB: Castlepollard Gardening Club held their April meeting on Thursday evening, April 25th. Guest speaker for the meeting was Colm O’Shea from Tullynally Castle Gardens. He gave a general talk on Spring gardening and told the clubhow pleased he is to workin such a fine and historic garden as Tullynally Castle Garden. His talk was very interesting and informative and the club wishes his well in Tullynally. The club then held the AGM and all officers and committee were re-elected. The Treasurer reported that the club broke even financially during the year. It was decided to change the meeting night to the last Friday of the month. The club’s next meeting is a visit to Brendan Farrell’s garden outside Ardagh, Co. Longford, on Friday, May 31st. Brendan attended to give the club a most interesting and informative talk last October. Members will meet in the Parish Centre carpark at 6.45pm and go by car to the garden. All are welcome.
ULSTER BANK CLOSURE: As expected and discussed at length the Ulster Bank branch on The Square, Castlepollard, finally closed its doors after over 135 years of trading in Castlepollard on Friday last, May 17th. All identification signs and banners relating to the bank have now been removed as has the ATM machine. Sources in the bank indicated that it was intended to close the branch as long as ago as five years. Had the bank management made this information generally available at that point it might have been possible for the community to address their concerns, and meet whatever criteria they required. This is all now conjecture. The branch has closed its doors for good and Castlepollard and North Westmeath is all the poorer because of it. Great credit must go to the (now former) staff, Branch Manager Naomi Masterson, Trish Stead, Mary Nally and Laura Burke, and their predecessors for the exemplary levels of courtesy, care and compassion which they exhibited to all their customers. This has been well highlighted at the meetings held following the announcement of the closure of the branch. We join with all former customers of Ulster Bank, Castlepollard, in wishing the staff every success and happiness for the future.
SUMMER FETE: The 2013 Castlepollard and Oldcastle Church of Ireland Union of Parishes Summer Fete takes place on Saturday, June 1st. The fete will be held in the rectory field, Pakemhamhall Road, Castlepollard, next to Castlepollard GAA grounds. Numerous stalls will be open on the day, and there will be large selection of items available. As part of the arrangements there will be a raffle, with tickets currently available, from various local outlets at 2.00 euro each. First prize is an electric pawnmower, second and electric juicer, and third prize is a Sunday lunch voucher for two. There are numerous other prizes. Ticket draw will take place on the day of the Summer Fete which will open to the public at 2.00pm.
HOSPICE SPONSORED WALK: Next Sunday, May 26th, sees the annual Sponsored Walk in aid of North Westmeath Hospice organised and hosted by The Anchor Bar, The Square, Castlepollard. The event will get underway from the Anchor at 4.00pm, and following the completion of the walk there will be a BBQ in the Beer Garden of the Anchor with music by Breege and the Startreks. Anyone requiring sponsorship cards or further information should contact Geraldine on 087-1260375, or The Anchor on 044-9661002. All sponsored entrants will be entered into a draw for a prize of a two night break for two at a luxury hotel. Your support will be greatly appreciated.
COOLE/WHITEHALL CARERS ASSOCIATION: Coole/Whitehall Carers association is holding a fundraising country dance on Friday night, May 31st, in Coole Hall. Music on the night will be provided by Gerry Guthrie between 11.30pm and 2.00am. Supporting act on stage between 9.30pm and 11.30pm. There will be a bar extension on the night and light refreshments available. Tickets cost 10.00 euro each. For further details contact 087-9534245.