MEMORIES OF JOHN MEEHAN
1: Athlunkard Boat Club was founded in 1898, their motto being ‘Ne Cede Malis’ meaning ‘Never concede to Malice.’ Well, while their members down through may have diligently adhered to this motto, it appears that in the year 1980, bad luck descended upon that valiant club in an unprecedented guise, that of a claim for personal injury. The club was financially unprepared as has been well documented by a stalwart member of the club, whose father, Jack, rowed in the ‘good old days.’ In fact, practically all of John’s siblings have ‘served their time’ so to speak with that renowned rowing club, an aquatic fraternity of sorts, and continued to procure many an award during their many years as astounding oarsmen and women of that proud aquatic entity that has lain with our Parish for the past 119 years. I will bring you John’s excellent and honest account of those slim years in three parts, this week, next week and will conclude on the week after that. I do hope you relish its contents.
A DIFFICULT TIME THE 80s:
“I have been thinking a lot about ABC in the 80s. I have been trying to remember the good times that the club brought to me personally throughout my involvement in the club. The 8os were a very difficult time for the club and everyone who was involved in it. The club had been unlucky to have been subject to a claim for personal injuries sustained by an individual while on the club premises. The club insurance at the time was not sufficient to cover this type of claim. The club officers went to our insurance broker and made provision to ensure we were covered for any such situation in future,
The was initial relief but soon again we were facing a public liability insurance claim sustained by another individual while on club property. Our insurers then informed us that we did not have the correct public liability insurance to cover this type of claim. It appears that we were only covered if there was a claim arising from an incident where our equipment (boats) was involved in an accident while on the water.” (From “The Story of Athlunkard Boat Club,” compiled by Michael Kiely and Denis O’Shaughnessy, 2012) Continued next week.
HERMITAGE GREEN AT CASTLE:
The highly popular band, Hermitage Green that has a very definite Parish connection (Corbally), will play at King John’s Castle on April 30th this year.
Fr. Derek Leonard, P.P. 061-414092: 087-6261287. Fr. John O’Byrne, C.C. 085-7491268. Fr. Seán Harmon 087-9870284. The address for all three priests is as follows: St. Mary’s Presbytery, Athlunkard Street, Limerick.
REGISTRATION FOR NATIONAL AND PRE-SCHOOL:
Registrations are now being taken for the above academic ventures. St. Mary’s National School, Bishop Street, 061-419264. St. Mary’s Pre-School 085-7238896.
ADULT EDUCATION AND ACCORD:
Adult Education classes at the Old Junior Boys’ School, Island Road, 061-313993. Accord, Limerick Centre, St. Munchin’s College, Corbally, Limerick 061-343000.
IRISH CHAMBER ORCHESTRA AT CATHEDRAL:
A work entitled, Choral Mission: ‘A Letter of Rights,’ encompassing the Irish Chamber Orchestra and Choir will open its season in Limerick t St. Mary’s Cathedral, on Saturday, February 25th, beginning at 8.00pm. This special work commissioned by Salisbury Cathedral in 2015, saw UK composer, Tarik O’Regan, team up with American poet and librettist, Alice Goodman, to create this exciting new work. Tickets and information: www.irishchamberorchestra.com
LIMERICK HONOURS KATE O’BRIEN:
Billed as Limerick Literary Festival, in honour of Kate O’Brien, it runs from February 23rd to February 26th. Among the august line-up will be the following people of local interest: Eoin Devereux (a versatile plus man, if ever there was one!) who will talk on Oscar Wilde and Morrissey at Chez le Fab, Arthur’s Quay Park (free!) at 8.00pm on Thursday, 23rd. Don’t be put off by the fancy name of that venue, it all boils down to four walls, full stop. Writer, Donal Ryan, will interview popular and highly successful writer, Cecilia Ahern. Mary Coll, a lady of no mean literary acumen herself, will be in conversation with Francesca Melandri. Following the opening at the Limerick City Gallery of Art, at 6.00pm on Friday, local bass-baritone, a young man of rich resonant singing voice, Kevin Neville, will perform in “As Music and Splendour,” at the same venue at 7pm. Top Limerick novelist, Róisín Meaney, will conduct Story-Telling at the Granary at 12.00 noon on Saturday (3-6 year olds). Local native and renowned musician, Bill Whelan, together with Lyric broadcaster, Liz Nolan, will be discussing their choice of books in Desert Island Books, including ‘the book I would never lend.’ A very well-produced booklet detailing minutely each and every event can be procured at the Granary Library. Incidentally, a most delightful restaurant, ‘Tuscany,’ has opened in the Courtyard beneath the Library and the exterior seating is quite an unprecedented luxury, check it out. Organisers of this most wonderful annual event might just keep in mind our literary past and in so doing, draw on the expertise of local lady, Sharon Slater, whose knowledge is limitless in all aspects of Limerick Life. Of course, Matthew Potter, would also be a distinct possibility, perhaps both!
One of the above-mentioned has been a lecturer in Sociology out in the University of Limerick for many a year now, and has an amount of other strings to his bow. However, besides all his academic achievements he remains a most approachable and down-to-earth man, the insignia of what I term, real true-born intelligence.
Eoin Devereux is a man of many parts
Who is closely aligned to the Arts,
From Morrissey to Wilde
And even Bowie, not mild,
Sure who knows, he might even play darts!
CROSSING THE BAR:
For sure we have had quite an amount of deaths during the month of January, it always seems to happen. But now as we face the Spring, please God we will experience less and less of good people going to God. I came upon the following most reflective poem some time back and thought I would share it with my readers. It was written by Alfred Lord Tennyson while he was reputedly staying in ‘Dugerna Lodge’ in Kilkee (still there by the way). It was subsequently put to music by Charles Hubert Hastings (1848-1918), the same man who had put the music to Robert Blake’s famous, “Jerusalem.” Seafaring people will particularly understand the significance of the wording in this truly magnificent piece of reflective writing. But then, Kilkee would do that to the receptive mind, wouldn’t it?
SUNSET AND EVENING STAR
Sunset and evening star
And one clear call for me!
And let there be no moaning of the bar,
When I put out to sea;
But such a tide as moving seems asleep,
Too full of sound and foam,
When that which drew from out the boundless deep,
Turns again home.
Twilight and evening bell,
And after that the dark!
And may there be no sadness and farewell,
When I embark;
For though from out our bourne of Time and Place
The flood may bear me far,
I hope to see my Pilot face to face,
When I have crossed the bar.
Alfred Lord Tennyson