Christmas Carol Service

Christmas Carol Service

Lanesboro Primary School will hold their annual Christmas Carol Service in St Mary’s Church on Thursday, December 11th at 6.30pm. All are welcome.


On Sunday last, there was a céilí in the Parish Hall. The day was miserable, the first really bad day of the winter and our concern was that the weather would prove to be a spoil sport. While the numbers were not fantastic, they were large enough to make it an excellent evening for all that turned out. An amazing statistic of the evening was that the first two people through the door travelled all the way from Mullingar. The céilí music provided by the excellent Annaly Céilí band ensured that everyone had great evening. Such was the feel good factor and the enthusiasm of the dancers that we organised another céilí to take place again St. Mary’s Hall on Sunday, 18th January. We look forward to another great evening of dancing and a large crowd turning out.

We must say a big thank you to Gerald Farrell, Teresa Ormsby, Mike Greene, Madaleine Murray, Chris Cullen, Margaret Gillen, Margaret Mullooly and Joe O’Brien for all their work in making the event so enjoyable. Tea/coffee, sandwiches courtesy of Farrell’s Gala and biscuits courtesy of Margaret Gillen and Joe and Martina O’Brien were served and went down a treat during the half-time break. There were three excellent door prizes - Afternoon Tea for 2 people at the magnificent Lough Rynn Castle Hotel, A voucher to the value of €50 from Spice India, Ballymahon St. Longford and a voucher to the value of €30 from Oriental Café, Killashee St., Longford. We would like to express our deepest gratitude to all of the sponsors of the door prizes for their support of us. There was also a raffle and we would like to thank our sponsors for their generosity – Voucher for Sunday lunch for 2 in Adie’s, Voucher for petrol or diesel from Cullen’s Service Station, Box of biscuits from Joe and Martina O’Brien, Scented Candle set from Clarkes bar, and a bottle of wine from Farrell’s Gala. We are looking forward to seeing you all on Sunday 18th January for another great evening of céilí dancing.

50/50 Supports Christmas Lighting

Last week Rathcline club chairman, Gerald Farrell, suggested to the committee last week that the club should donate their takings of the 50/50 to the Lanesboro Christmas Lighting. This was agreed as the club did not want to see the town being dark and dull during the Christmas time. The uptake was excellent this week and it is hoped that Lanesboro Christmas Lights committee would great benefit from the club’s donation. The draw took place in Adie’s on Monday night – too late for local notes. Last Monday the 50/50 took place and the pool of €342 went to Margaret Grant, Rossduff, Aughnacliffe. The draw on Monday night next will take place in Joe and Martha Farrell’s Yacht Bar and your support will be greatly appreciated.

Bridge Club

The results of the competition held on Wednesday last, 3rd December are; N/S 1st Phil Chalmers and Cyril Hussey, 2nd Gemma Douglas and Elish Gray and 3rd Renee Walsh and Mary Jameson. E/W 1st Mairead Gill and Maura Hanly, 2nd Maureen Hynes and Patsy Canavan and 3rd Loretto Cooney and Freda Kenny. All players are reminded that the Christmas competition will take place this Wednesday, 10th December.


Many congratulations to Gareth and Anne Marie Johnston, Rathcline Road, on the birth last week of a baby boy.

Christmas Concert

The Samaritans will hold a Christmas concert in the Franciscan Friary Athlone on this Thursday, 11th December at 8pm. Cathal Murray – the rising star and voice of RTÉ will be compere for the evening’s entertainment that will be provided by the Army band of the 2nd Brigade, Simon Casey, The All-Ireland choir winners Moate Community School Choir and the Athlone Pipe Band. Tickets are available at the Franciscan Friary, Castle Gift Shop, Midland Sound Equipment, and Cunningham’s chemist. Tickets are priced at €12. The Samaritans are available 24 hours each and every day phone 116123.

All Ireland Finalists

Many congratulations to Joan Donnellan and Margaret Gillen who recently won the Lake Trophy for the North Midland Region A pair bridge competition. Both ladies will now go forward to represent the region in the All-Ireland finals that will be played in March 2015.


We would like to extend our sincere sympathy to Fergie Feeney, Knock on the death of his son Paul, aged 35, who died recently. Paul was laid to rest following his funeral mass in Wool, Dorset, on Friday last.

New Barbers in Town

A new barbers shop has opened on the Main Street. The shop is situated next door to Joe and Martha Farrell’s Yacht Bar. The local barber is a local young man Ben Hussey. Ben is son of Pat and Dolores Hussey, Ballyleague. We wish Ben a strong business and much success into the future.


Over the last two weekends, we have seen two premises broken into by burglars. The weekend before last Dolan’s Foods were broken into last Saturday night Sunday morning and on Saturday evening last a house in Curraghrua was broken into during the short absence of its residents. Break ins are becoming more popular in our area. It is not acceptable that a business that employs a number of people such as Dolan’s should have to suffer such occurrences. In the case of Saturday evening last a house was left unoccupied for about 45 minutes and in that space of time, in the middle of a housing estate, between 6.30pm and 7.15pm the house was broken into. Somebody surely seen something that did not appear right and if they did they must report it to the local Gardaí or the Gardaí in Longford. Surely it is now time that the Gardaí attached to Lanesboro barracks are allowed to cover the area that the Lanesboro station covers and they are not brought to Longford as extra manpower. It is beyond time that Longford town was supplied with adequate Gardaí to cover their town and area and not drawing our Gardaí to Longford leaving the people of this area vulnerable, hence the rise in burglaries in this area in recent months. It is now time that our single and Government TD stood up and demanded such for the people of our and his county.

MS Christmas Run 2014

It is a tradition that has been in Lanesboro, Newtowncashel and all points between for the past 23 years. It has raised in excess of €160,000 throughout the 23 years. It has grown greatly in support and it has always been a most fantastic way to start Christmas Day. The friendship and comradery developed before during and after has lasted for years. As the advertisement says “There are no strangers here just friends we have yet to meet”. The Multiple Sclerosis Walk/Run from Newtowncashel continues to beat the previous year’s record and goes from strength to strength. This year there are no reasons for training not to be done as the weather has stayed mild and mostly dry so everyone can get out and get their training done. It is great to see that people are already enquiring for sponsorship cards. It is very important that the sponsorship cards are filled and more importantly that the sponsorship is maximised. Multiple Sclerosis depend greatly on the support of both the runners/walkers and the people that support the runners and walkers with their financial support. The local organising once again calls on your generosity and looks forward to see you running, walking or just out supporting the entrants as they wind their way from Cashel through Lisnagan, Clonmee, Newpark, Lisnacusha, Thureen, Killinure, Tullyvrane, Knock and down Main Street to the finishing line at St. Mary’s Hall at the bridge.

The walkers will start at 11.45pm with the runners staring at 12.15pm. Refreshments will be served for all in St. Mary’s Parish hall. Join in and be part of the movement.

Pop Up Shop

St. Christopher’s Services have opened a ‘pop up’ shop in Longford Shopping Centre car park and will remain open until Saturday 20th December. The Christmas craft shop will stock Christmas gifts all made in Longford and it is an ideal way to continue your support for St. Christopher’s which means so much to so many people.


We would like to extend our congratulations to Edward and Michelle, Kelly, Rathcline Road on the birth at the weekend of a baby boy.

Thank You

The Rathcline branch of the I.F.A. wish to thank everyone who donated so generously to their recent Self Help Africa church gate collection. A sum of €531.60 was realized.


It is great to be writing that heading once again. Lanesboro ICA will hold a meeting in St. Mary’s Hall on this Wednesday, 10th December at 8pm. All ladies in the area are invited to go along and be part of a renewed ICA in our area.


We would like to extend our deepest sympathy to Francis and Eithne Clyne and family, Corrigeen, on the death at the weekend of Patrick Clyne, Bawn, Moydow, father of Francis.

Over 50s Mens Club

The next and final meeting of the men’s club for 2014 will take place on this coming Thursday, 11th December at 12 noon. The following meeting will take place in February 2015. The organisers would like to wish everyone in the club, their families and those that supported them in any way during the year a very happy Christmas and very special 2015.

Lough Ree Community Resources

The directors of Lough Ree Community Resources Centre have taken on with the task of the provision of Christmas lights for the town. Due to unforeseen circumstances the church gate collection for the lights did not take place last weekend, however the Parish Hall Committee have kindly offered us their church gate collection date of the Sat 13th/Sun 14th December. So next weekend the church gate collection will be in aid of the Christmas lights. Your support will be greatly appreciated. If you miss the collection and wish to donate, you can give your donation to Brigid Mullooly, Maggie Gillen or Mark Casey.

Wedding Venue of the Year

The Abbey Hotel is in the running for Wedding venue of the Year. We have a local connection to the Abbey Hotel in the person of Geraldine Greally, nee Murray. It would be great for locals to log on and support a local business that is working hard in developing themselves and their product. Log on and register your votes at for the Abbey Hotel for the Connaught award.

Christmas Lights

The Ballyleague Christmas lights committee wish to thank everybody who supported their annual church gate collection last weekend at the Church of the Holy Rosary, Ballyleague. Five large Christmas trees have already been put in place this year by our voluntary committee The funds raised last weekend will help to further enhance the LED lighting in the area. The lights at the tree at the church were turned on in front of a nice crowd on Saturday night committee. The committee wish to also thank those who helped carry out the collection. To make a donation contact Noel Moran, John Loughlin or Gerry Trimble.

Christmas Lights

The Lough Ree Community Resource Group has taken up the mantle of providing the Christmas Lights for Lanesboro for 2015. You are asked to support the efforts of the group as they will be brightening up the town for Christmas. If you wish to make a donation you may do so with Margaret Gillen, Mark Casey or Brigid Mullooly.

Christmas Day Swim

Lough Ree Sub Aqua club wish to thank everyone for their continued support during what was a busy 2014. We are delighted to invite everyone to join us for our annual Christmas Day swim which will take place on the east bank of the river Shannon at 12.30pm on Christmas Day. Participants and spectators welcome and light refreshments will be served afterwards. From all at Lough Ree Sub Aqua Club, we wish you a very Happy Christmas and a prosperous and peaceful New Year.


We would like to extend our deepest sympathy to Maeve McBride, Barnacor on the recent death of her grandmothe, Margaret McGeever, Gweedore, Co. Donegal.

Season of Sundays

The very popular pictorial account of the GAA season from start to finish, Season of Sundays, was recently published. This year in one their scene setting photographs , local man and county assistant treasurer, Albert Cooney was featured along with Killashee man Anthony Dooner collecting the entrance fees at a game in Newtowncashel in the early part of the season. Indeed, renowned photographer Ray McManus the founder of Sportsfile is no stranger to Lanesboro where he often drops into Gretta O’Brien and family.

It is always great to go through the book of excellent photographs that evokes many memories and this year was extra special seeing one of our own included in the book.

Remember last year at the Thatch

300 children from throughout the town and neighbouring areas came into see Santa after he arrived on the river Shannon. On next Sunday, December 14th, the big man is travelling in a different style to the Thatch in Ballyleague. The show starts at 3-30pm with a major train show and a new marquee with a Christmas Fayre and all funds raised will go to Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital in Crumlin.

Tidy Towns

The programme of work has started for next year’s Tidy Towns competition. Planting of a thousand wild roses, kindly sponsored by Waterways Ireland, on the river bank at the parish hall and the planting of daffodils around the Longford approach road stone sign has been completed in recent weeks. It is hoped to plant a row of 35 trees along the new pathway similar to the Ballymahon road. We would be very grateful if people/families could consider sponsoring a tree for 20euros. The trees will be native species and it is hoped to plant them during December. If you would like to help us with this project, please let one of the committee know or contact the office at 043 3321977.In preparation for next year’s tidy towns programme, a public meeting was held Thursday 27 Nov in St Mary’s Hall. We thank the many people who attended the meeting which produced a long list of ideas for 2015. It is planned to put these ideas into the 2015 tidy towns plan and to present this plan to our community during January. Work has commenced on a Christmas tree made from recycled materials which will be displayed in the window of the library.

Thank You

Thanks to the last two weekend church gate collections in Ballyleague and Lanesborough, the new Lough Ree Bay Tennis club is well on the way to getting new nets, poles, lines and floodlights in place....thanks to everyone who contributed to our collections where over €500 was donated by a very supportive public for our new facilities....our tennis club will now take a Christmas break and return on Saturday January 19th as usual at Ballyleague hall at 6pm for 5 to 12 year olds. .happy Christmas to all our members and friends and supporters.

Thank You

The Rathcline Ladies committee would like to thank everybody that donated clothes to their collection over the past year. Their collection of clothes has now been picked up and delivered. The club will recommence their collection next week and if anyone is clearing out presses in preparation for Christmas and you find old clothes that are not required they can give Mike Greene a call and he will arrange drop off or collection.

Busy Weekend for Shannon Gaels

Nothing shows off the diversity of the Shannon Gaels club better than the events over the past few weeks and again next weekend. The club were entered in six different categories in the Scór na nÓg and were successful in one and runners up in others. Scór brings into play all the youngsters of the club those that play ball as well as those that do not and it offers them the opportunity to compete and use their skills in a different way. A remarkable feature for two of the sketch team Anna Peters, and Niall Keane is that their victory on Sunday week was their fifth county Scór medals from six entries – a wonderful achievement. The club under the directorship of Tracy Tobin has its own choir and they have been practicing hard for the annual club mass that comes up this coming Saturday evening at 7.30pm and they will also be singing at 11.30am mass on Christmas morning. Saturday afternoon in Ballymore Community Centre, Co. Westmeath our Scór sketch team will take to the stage in the Leinster semi-final and we wish the team and their mentors the very best of luck. The minor AGM will take place on Sunday next 14th December in the clubhouse at 5pm. Every parent and everybody that has an interest in developing the young kids of the parish either on the field or in Scór or the choir or indeed any other sporting or cultural way are invited to attend. Your support is vital to the progression of the youngsters of our parish.

Lough Ree AC

As the year draws to a close so too does the cross country season. It seems for us that the grass is growing in the right direction, this year Alannah Flood qualified for an under 12 Connaught Cross Country team to compete in the All-Ireland, a feat that we had not accomplished for many years until the last two years and Alannah was our runner both times. During the week awards were presented to the winners of the September/October Road Run Series, Cian Walton and Clodagh Kiely were our consistent winners; both recorded very impressive times for the Clonbonny Runs. When it came to select the “Club Athlete of the Year” award we were guided by the principles of the Olympic Council and the ethos that participation is more important than winning. With this in mind we couldn’t separate Orla Cox and Shauna Mimnagh. Both athletes took part in all six road runs and both competed in the two underage provincial and county cross country events hence we gave both girls an award. Congratulations to all! All roads lead to the bridge in Lanesboro on Christmas morning; it is the finishing point for the Annual Run from Newtowncashel to Lanesboro in aid of Longford Multiple Sclerosis. In conjunction with this Lough Ree AC has a run for primary schools pupils, starting from the Community College and finishing at the bridge and the Sub Aqua Club also have a swim. It is the only place to be on Christmas morning unless you are on turkey duty, both for the atmosphere and the opportunity to catch up with those who are only around for Christmas. Finally, congratulations to Cian Mc Phillips for medalling in Santry in the All-Ireland under 13 Cross Country last Sunday from a field of over 150 qualifiers. Looking forward to the Christmas celebrations.