On Wednesday 3rd March the contracts for the refurbishment of the Old Railway Hotel were signed in the VEC Offices in Galway. The former Railway Hotel, which was built in 1870, was acquired by the VEC in the early 1950s. It served as a Hotel Training School from 1959 to 1972, when the opening of the Regional Technical College rendered it redundant. Since then, a number of Pro-Nursing courses have been held there, but over the past few years it has begun to fall into disrepair This beautiful old Victorian building, which is so much a part of Athenry’s heritage, will be refurbished over the next few months.

The relocation of one of the largest education providers in Connacht, with an annual expenditure of some 18 million, will add to the growing stature of Athenry and provide a considerable boost to the local economy.

Athenry Playground is indebted to the following individuals and companies who very generously supported our efforts.

Galway Co. Council

Athenry Community Council

Oyster Homes Ltd.

Athenry Credit Union

Peter Gilhooley

Church Gate Collection

Congil Construction Ltd.

Michael Earls Easy Fix Rubber Products

John Hickey Hickey Homes

Paddy Kennedy Construction Design Sun/eying & Planning

C & F Tooling Ltd.

Fr. Tony King P.P.

Calpol

Anthony Ryan Ltd.

O’Hara Solicitors

Supermac’s Athenry

Coffey Construction Ltd.

Newell Construction

AIB

Ulster Bank

Raheen Woods Hotel

Tír na n-Óg Creche, Kingsland

Fahy’s Centra Supermarket

Peadar Monaghan & Sons Ltd.

Scoil na mBuachailli, Baile Átha an Ri

Lawless’s Londis

The New Park Hotel

Nick Hitchcox Photography

Teagasc

Secure All Security

Enda & Mary Somers Filling Station

Brian Melia Mortgage Options

Pat Callanan Property Sales

Michael F. Dolan & Co. (Accountants)

The Q Bar

Esker Readymix

Declan Rooney Menswear

Tommy & Mary Quinn

Bob & Anna Reilly

Sean & Ann Cleary

Somers Shoes

Tommy & Fiona Lane

Tommy & Ann Cheevers

Laffey’s Garage

A&T Print

June’s Pre-School

Eamonn Keogh KC Developments Ltd.

The Grapevine

Tot’s Paradise

Rooney Monumental Works

M.J. Gardner & Sons Ltd.

Arrabawn Co-Op.

Eagle Woodworks

Johnny Healy Roofing

Frank & Madeleine Brody

Billy & Mary MacDonagh, Gutter-Macs

Brady’s Meat Market

Practical Finance

Kelly’s Pharmacy

Duffy’s Mace

The Shopping Basket

Corrib Food Products Ltd.

Castlegate Hotel

Martin & Sandra Morrissey, The Square Inn

Sharon’s Hairdressing

Noel Treacy

Cathal Moran

Tom Dempsey Interiors

Paddy & Margaret Kelly

Sticky Fingers, Mary & Gerry Burke

J. Glynn’s Bar, Mary & Frank Curran

Athenry Family Dental Practice

The Fields of Athenry Gift Shop

Joanne Melia, Smarties Montessori School

Drs Keane, McGloin & O’Connor

Drs Anne & Vivian Brennan

C & C Tractor Spares Ltd.

Frank Sweeney Auctioneering

Leo & Jo Coffey

Mourad & Tara, La Flustica

McNamara Family, Barrack St.,

Michael & Donna Lane

Gormally Car Sales

Vincent Ryan Painting & Decorating

Dean & Dympna Laffey

Eddie & Breda Fox

Ml. Cooney & Sons Ltd., Builders Providers

Pat Holland

Brendan & Breda Burke

l.F.A.

Flanagan’s Pharmacy

Vita Health Foods

Padraig McInerney Insurance, Athenry

Bobby & Clare Gardiner

Breda Gardiner

Sean & Edel Monahan

Orla Ruane

Ray & Midge Glynn

Bláthanna

Athenry Pharmacy

Finnerty’s Butchers

Marian & Luke Glynn

Athenry Dry Cleaners & Laundrette

Padraic & Linda Lyons

Norman Farrell Auctioneering

The Yellow Mill Bakery

Helen Tully

Eamonn & Kathleen Brody

Skillet Bar

Enda’s Fruit & Veg.

Michael Burke Hardware

“Nearly there”!

There are 153 Gaelscoileanna in Ireland at present with a further 3 opening this year and an additional 6 to open in 2006, including one for our own children here in Athenry!

Off to a Quick Start

An Information Night was held in Athenry last February hosted by committee members along with the Principal of Gaelscoil Riabhach, Loughrea.

Approximately 40 interested parents attended this meeting and heard from the speakers about the setting up of the Gaelscoil in Loughrea and about its successes to date. As a result of this meeting and the strong interest shown by those present it was decided to establish a Gaelscoil in Athenry, opening in 2006.

The first step in this process was the setting up of a Foundation Committee.

The following Committee members were elected:

Chairperson: Páraic Mac Donnchadha

Assistant Chairperson: Gerry Flynn

Secretary: Adele MacCullagh

Assistant Secretary: Maire Duggan

Treasurer: Helen Jennings

Assistant Treasurer: Denis Rabbitte

Public Relations Officers: Maire Duggan and Coreena Gibbons

Fund Raising Committee: Maire Gibbons and Rob Jarvis

Building Committee: Fiona McCann and Peter Lyons

Qualifying Criteria for School Recognition

In order to open the school in September 2006 the following criteria must be met:

1. 17 Junior Infant enrolments are needed (20+ children for a second teacher)

2. All children must be 4 years old by 30/08/2006

3. Enrolment will only be up to 2nd class

4. Any child starting 2nd class must have previously come from a Gaelscoil.

Building on the early Momentum

Following on the enthusiasm and strong interest shown from the outset, the Committee organised an Information and Enrolment night in the New Park Hotel in April, in order to get the all-important list of Seventeen Names started. A further 30 or so interested parents and other supporters of the project attended this meeting and heard from 2 parents about their reasons for, and experiences from sending their children to a Gaelscoil.

Enrolment Target and Progress to date

Many enrolments were accepted on the night. To date great progress has been made in reaching the enrolment target. It now stands as follows:

Junior Infants 12 (2006, ’07, ’08, 09)

Senior Infants 11 (2006)

First Class 3 (2006)

Second Class 2 (2006)

So, our new Gaelscoil is still a little short of numbers we just need another 8 Junior Infant “candidates” for a second teacher and the Funding Committee will be eager to hear from you if you have children who match the criteria laid out above!

Some reasons for sending your child to the Gaelscoil in Athenry:

Department of Education funded/non-fee paying school

One less subject to learn so your child can concentrate on other subjects

Please Note: Even though it helps, obviously, you do not need to be an Irish speaker to send your child to an all-Irish speaking school!

Option for multi-denominational school

Small class size

Your child will learn Irish through music, play, gesture and rhymes. S/he will enjoy learning the language and be proud to be able to speak it. International research shows that being bilingual helps intellectual and cognitive development. Being bilingual will help your child learn a third and fourth language when s/he is older.

Gaelscoil “Ethos”

The next step for the committee is to choose the religious ethos of the school. The ethos of the school can be either: One denominational e.g. Catholic, Interdenominational i.e. Catholic and Protestant, Multi — Denominational i.e. many religions.

If the multi-denominational option is chosen, the children will learn about all the different types of religion during school hours and then after school, 2 days a week, Catholic children will have an extra half an hour of Religion in order to prepare them for First Holy Communion and Confirmation.

Finding a suitable Site/Building

The Building Sub-Committee is at Present checking the suitability of vacant buildings in Athenry that could be used as a school premises and also sites on which temporary buildings could be erected. Some promising avenues of exploration are being pursued in this regard. We’d like to hear from You!

A Further public meeting will be held later on this year and all interested parties will be welcome. In the meantime, if you wish to enroll your child in the new Gaelscoil or would like any additional information you can contact either Adele MacCullagh on O87 9076892 or adele.maccullagh@gmail.com or Máire Duggan on 086 8515420 or duggan69@eircom.net

End of an Era as Athenry’s Last Male Barber Retires

From Saturday evening, January 15th, for the first time in living memory, there was no male barber working in Athenry. That date marked the retirement of Christy Archer from the Barber Shop on McDonald’s Lane. It also marked the 55th anniversary of his first day as an apprentice barber in J. C. Carey’s, Tipperary Town.

Following enquiries by his former headmaster, Mr Holmes, in his home village of Oola, Co. Limerick, Christy secured an apprenticeship that began on the morning of January 16th, 1950. His mother, Bridget Archer at almost 93years of age still lives in their home in the village from where he cycled the round trip of twelve miles, six days a week to work from 9.00am to 8.00pm weekdays and to 11pm on Saturday nights. Four and a half years later, he moved to Athenry to begin work in the Athenry salon of Grant’s of Eyre Square. The salon in Davis Street was one of two barbershops in the town. The other was located in North Gate Street and closed in 1961. In 1958, Christy moved to the Grant’s salon in Eyre Square, Galway.

At that time, Haircuts were two old shillings each and barbers had to do ten haircuts to earn one pound. In Eyre Square, one of his customers was Nobel Prize winner, Sean McBride S.C., who attended at the Courthouse on a regular basis and whose habit it was to study a sheaf of legal paperwork while having his hair cut.

In 1961, Christy returned to Athenry and set up his own barbershop in the Davis Street salon previously occupied by Grant’s. He was to remain there until February 1990 when a fire destroyed the building and resulted in the move to McDonald’s Lane from where he has worked for the last 15 years. In 1962, he married his wife Teresa and has four daughters and a son and now nine grandchildren. The working hours in the salon continued to be long and at the end of a busy day the air would be blue with the thick curtain of smoke from the dozens of cigarettes smoked by the customers in the salon. Saturday night closing time in Athenry remained at 11 pm until the introduction of Saturday evening mass in the 1970’s when the hours became shorter. Long though the hours were for some customers they were not long enough, and Christy I remembers having to return to the salon at 11.15pm one Saturday night to reopen the salon for a customer who needed a shave and a haircut.

Fair Days were also extremely busy and as the farmers herded their cattle through the streets of Athenry, a specially made gate had to be erected at the door to the barbershop to stop the livestock getting in. On one occasion a loose bullock broke through the gate and it took a number of strong customers, lined up the stairway in the entrance hall to push him back out into the street.

After the fairs were over the shopkeeper had to go out and to wash down their walls and their section of the street. Anyone who went to have his hair cut will remember that the small boys sat on a seat which consisted of a plank of wood across the arms of the big barber chair, until they were tall enough to sit on the chair for themselves. Short-back-and sides in in the 50s and early 60s changed to the fashion for long hair in the late 60s and 70s when men first began to visit women’s salons, or unisex salons as they were called. In the 80s and 90s short and skintight styles using clippers came into fashion. The hot towel shaves, was a stalwart of the exhausted Galway Race punters to ready them for another day’s racing and a night of revelry is just a cosmetic feature.

In 1950, Christy began work in a predominantly farming town and now 2005 retires from a busy urban town that has grown more than three times its size. He will enjoy his retirement playing chess games. He will continue to teach school children and community games teams in the game and will engage with other chess players over the Internet and continue his hobbies of painting and traveling.

Well done, Christy!

Last December, Lisheenkyle N.S. launched its first music C.D. entitled “Hello, my God”. It contains five tracks — “Amen”, “Hello my God”, “Love, shine a light”, “Panis Angelicus” and “Lean on me”.

The Choir under the direction of Ruth Dobbyn O’Dea and Paula Forde performs all tracks. Solos were performed by Ciaran Cleary, Priscilla Finnerty, Siobhan Kelly and Connor Fanning. Special thanks to Gerald O’Donoghue at Greenfields studios, Tuam for recording and mastering. Thanks also to Gerard Fahy for backing tracks and Pat Naughton for providing the voice of God! Copies of the C.D. are still available from the school at a cost of €10.00. (Telephone 091 844901)

Trócaire Lenten Fast: Well done to the pupils of 5th and 6th Classes who raised €1,647 in March of this year by taking part in the Trócaire 24 hour fast. Thanks to the children, their teacher Ms. Higgins and all that supported them.

Lisheenkyle N.S. supports Athenry Cancer Care: At Easter, the girls and boys of 5th and 6th classes made a presentation of a beautiful vibrant wall hanging to Athenry Cancer Care. Our School is delighted to be involved with such a worthwhile organization and we were greatly saddened to hear of the death of our good friend Teresa Ruane, ar dheis Dé go raibh a hanam dilis. On receiving the wall hanging, Teresa wrote to thank us and said that “it really brightens up our Centre and lifts our hearts”.

Fis project; 3rd and 4th Classes have been involved in the Fis project since January. Fis is a three-year project designed to introduce the medium of film as a support to the Revised Primary School Curriculum. Lisheenkyle N.S. is one of five schools in the county taking part in the project. Their first film “Captain Collossal” will be screened in the Eye Cinema, Galway on May 31st 2005.

The feature photograph shows Ms. Higgins and her 6th class presenting the artwork to Nuala King whom received it on behalf of Athenry Cancer Care.

Front row – Alan Murphy, Dean Healy, Ruth Pokall (classroom assistant) Priscilla Finnerty, Aoife Quinn, Nuala King (Athenry Cancer Care), Darragh Hynes, Patricia Higgins ( Class Teacher) and Adam Tuohy.

Back row – Einne O’Reilly, Noel Grealish, Thomas Connolly, Jack Carr, Sean O’Halloran and Marc Cleary.

David O’Brien is a Junior Certificate student at Presentation College, Athenry. He is sixteen years old and the youngest of four children to Tomas and Frances O’Brien from the Galway Equestrian Centre, Peakroe, Athenry.

Born into a family steeped in all thing equestrian it is no surprise that David would join in the family tradition of show jumping. At the age of eight David began riding 128cm ponies and it was not long before he was collecting red rosettes on Greenville Lady but it was on the young novice 128acm pony Miss Simpson that David first caught the eye of the experts around the show jumping circuit.

He qualified Miss Simpson for the R.D.S. in Dublin on their first year when the pony was six and David was eleven. This combination had many wins including R.D.S. qualifiers, Millstreet Discovery and Grand Prix in Cavan, Ennis, Kill, … the list goes on and on.

At the age of twelve riders move on to 138cm ponies and he was so lucky to have two wonderful ponies in Rosie Duncan and Ballindooley Queen, again a novice produced by David. Each day at all the major shows in the county David was winning on one and being placed on the other he also made his first appearance on an Irish Team in England and took home a team and individual medal.

When you turn fourteen years old you move on up the ladder to 148cm ponies and it is in this category that David has really come into his own. The production of young ponies to international standard has always been a specialty in the O’Brien household and with the purchase of Bertas Clover, as a three year, old few were to know what was in store. From the beginning both rider and pony got along very well and it wasn’t long before they started winning at all the major shows up and down the county.

On his performance here in Ireland David was chosen to represent his country abroad during 2004. He is the third member of his family to wear the green jacket abroad and where ever they jump the O’Briens are always introduced as being from Athenry, Ireland and “The Fields” are often sung after a victory in a foreign land.

In 2004 David and Baetas Clover competed at eight international shows in France, Holland, Belgium and Italy and never came home empty handed. He was second individually in France and Holland as well as being on the winning team in Holland. In Germany he won his first major international class which led to his selection as anchor man on the team from then on “The Ice Man” as he became known was always last to go for Ireland never once let his team down always returning with the best results of the day for Ireland.

The next major outing was the European Championships which were held in Jaszkowo, Poland in August. It’s a very long way from Athenry to Poland by road but the O’Brien Family set out with dad Tomas driving his truck and all the ponies of the Irish Team, mam Frances navigated and brother Thomas came as groom. David flew from Dublin – his first time on an airplane. In the intense heat and dust in Jaszkowo, Bertas Clover became known as “the wonder Pony” and people came each day to see her perform.

They did very well and finished up sixth individually which was a major achievement. David’s older brother Joseph was fourth at the European Championships in 1998 also with a six year old pony, “Mid West Star”, which has since gone on to win two gold medals for the U.K.

David had three other trips to Europe in 2004 but the most memorable has to be his Grand Prix win in Liege in Belgium. This had never been won by an Irish rider before and we can still feel the excitement we felt as the Irish Flag was raised and the National Anthem played.

David had many other successes down through the years on other ponies. With “Star of Cashel” he is the holder of the high jump record standing at 1.85m which was not previously broken for twenty five years. Just a few weeks ago he was honoured as the “lrish Field” young show jumper of the year 2004 and in so doing is the first Galway person to do so. Previous winners include Jessica Kurten, Shane Carey and Billy Twomey to name but a few.

So as David now moves on in age so also are the days of ponies over and now, he moves on to horses where once again young animals are being trained to hopefully in the not too distant future represent Ireland. He has already jumped in his first senior Grand Prix with just one fence down so we think the best is yet to come.

David has to be careful though as his two older brothers hold some serious records of their own. Joseph won many titles at the R.D.S. Dublin, Millstreet, Cavan, France, Germany and Italy in his time. He is returning this year to Ireland after completing his studies at Groningen University in Holland where he combined his academic studies with time spent at the VDL Stud which is one of the biggest breeding units in Europe for Show-jumping horses. And not to be outdone Thomas who is a Leaving Certificate student in the Vocational School in Athenry and has won more national championships at the R.D.S in ponies and horses and is also the youngest ever recipient of an Irish international Bursary.

Show jumping is now the major enterprise on the O’Brien farm and with a fine yard developed which includes first class stabling, sand arena and horse walker and planning permission obtained for an indoor arena we hope the name O’Brien, Athenry will be heard far and wide.

See also – David O’Brien – World of ShowJumping – July 2021

Members of the Playground Development Group

Back row: Ann Reaney, Michael Coppinger, Cllr. Peter Feeney, Patricia O’Grady, Eugene Cloonan (guest), Claire Lundin and John Eagle.

Front row: Teresa Coppinger, Galway County Mayor Willie Burke and Claire Parr. Missing from photograph: Emer Eagle.

Santa came early to the children of Athenry Parish for the official opening of the new Athenry Playground – 18th December, 2004.

Claire Reaney at the official opening of the Athenry Playground — smiling in the rain. Photograph courtesy of the Connacht Tribune

It all began in March 2002 when the Playground Development Group made contact with Mr. Jim Cullen, Director of Civic Amenities in Galway County Council, regarding Athenry’s lacking facilities for recreational play for our children.

Neither Jim nor the group could have envisaged how much contact there would be between us in the ensuing years! Jim has been a great asset to our group in his role within the Council and he took a huge personal interest in this project.

There were times when we felt that it may be too difficult a project but with Jim’s encouragement we persevered, and we are so glad that we did.

Supporting Jim, we worked closely with John Diskin, Senior Engineer, Enda Gallagher, Engineer, Christy Mannion, Overseer and his crew.

When we faced challenges, we could always depend on the phenomenal support of Galway County Council to help us through.

Local man Peter Feeney wore three hats. He was the chairman of the Athenry Community Council, Councilor in the Galway County Council and a hardworking member of the Athenry Playground Development Group. Peter has been a friend and our voice in the Galway County Council. He was a facilitator between the Playground Group and the Council.

Peter was a very willing pawn and is to be commended on how effortlessly and quietly he carried out his duties. There is no doubt that Peter has been hugely influential in our quest for a play facility.

it was in Peter’s role as chairman of Athenry Community Council that we first approached him seeking a suitable site. They came up trumps and provided our town with an unrivalled unique site. Without this site we could not have moved forward. It not only fits the criteria of a safe location for a children’s playground but also offers an enhanced amenity for the parish as a whole.

The equipment contractor was Christy Hansberry of Wooden Delights. Christy undertook this project not realizing how much input would be required of him. He went far beyond the remit of sourcing and installing this playground by offering us support and guidance in his capacity as playground supplier.

There was a requirement to ensure that the equipment would be in keeping with its historic surrounds. I am sure you will all agree that Christy met this challenge by devising a layout and sourcing equipment that complimented the areas unique heritage.

This project required substantial funding and again Galway County Council made a huge contribution. The remainder of the funding had to be raised locally and to this regard we wish to thank our sponsors.

We have been astounded by the members of the Athenry Playground Development Group’s extraordinary generosity from the church gate collection to individual donations. We secured from others professional services so generously and selflessly given to support us in our quest.

Given all the work that has gone into this project by many we hope you all feel a sense of ownership and our sincere wish is that the playground be maintained for its integrity. We ask the children to use this facility with care and we beseech the parents the adults of our parish to act as guardians so that this facility will remain for many, many years to come.

The sights and sounds of the many children who enjoy this playground more than justify our quest, and are ample reward for the efforts of all. It is something we can all be proud of.

We hope you can play around for many years to come. Thanks Santa …

Athenry No Name Club had another busy year!

In November we went on a recruitment drive for new hosts and hostesses. We had a great response and 25 new hosts and hostesses were chosen to attend a training day on Jan15th. Each and every one chosen are a great asset to the club and community.

In January Rachel Walsh and Shane Murray represented the club in the national regional youth awards in Ballinasloe they also attended the final in Dublin and did the club proud.

On Jan 1st 23 hosts and hostesses, with adults, attended a concert by the Saw doctors in the Black Box and had a most enjoyable night.

On Jan 15th we had a fundraising day for the Tsunami Disaster where we locked up our local Garda Fahy for 24 hrs; we would like to thank everyone who gave generously to this cause, Shane Coogan and Galway Co. Council for providing the lock up trailer.

In March we took part in the St Patrick’s Day Parade with the help of Martin Courtney, Vincent Ryan and Denis Coleman. The club took part in the regional final of the National Cabaret Awards in Ballinasloe where Stephen Murphy won best pop singer on the night, many thanks to Marion Courtney, Rachel Walsh and Deirdre Earls for all their help.

The No Name Club would like to wish Fr John O’Gorman, who was an inspiring member of our club the best of luck in his new parish.

Athenry Football Club had one of its most successful seasons in 2004/2005 winning 2 trophies and finishing runners up in 4 other competitions.

Connacht Cup

Pride of place goes to the under 14 team who won our first ever Connacht Cup competition after coming through 6 tough rounds they had to go to Castlebar to play local side Castlebar Celtic in the Final. After a brilliant display in front of a big crowd Athenry took the trophy after a fantastic goal from a free kick from Adam Duffy. Athenry defended superbly throughout and centre forward Joey Burke received the man of the match trophy. Well done to the proud management duo of Tommy Fahy and Peter Gilhooley.

The Athenry squad for this fine achievement was as follows: Angus Farrell, Declan Connolly, Thomas Divilly, Gerard O’Halloran, James Divilly, Aineis Lawless, Micheal O’Halloran (Captain), Niall Gibbons, Adam Duffy, Joe Burke, Jonathon Kelly, John Cannon, Darren Callinan, Barry O’Brien, Liam Cannon, Niall Quinn, Micheal Gilhooley, Daniel Hanlon, Thomas Flynn, Patrick Hynes, David Ward, Sean Dooley, Robert Mc Hale and Justin Brody.

League Title

Our B team won its second league trophy in a row after another season which saw them lose only one league game in 18 for the third season in a row. They again had to do it the hard way in a play off against the only team that beat them West United. The match was played in Mervue in front of a big crowd. Despite going 2 goals down after 12 minutes they battled their way back into the game with an inspired performance from all the squad with Wayne Finn (2), David Glynn and Gary Coffey scoring the goals to give them a 4-2 win after extra time. This is the first time the club has won 2 senior leagues in a row and the fifth senior league in the club’s history.

Well done to manager Michael Dunleavy and the help he got from captains Niall Thomas, Neville Hynes and Ciaran Callinan. The squad which achieved this was: Brian O’ Regan, Joe Maloney, Alan Lynch, Wayne Finn, David Glynn, Paul Flaherty, Paul Neary, Niall Thomas (Captain), Philip Somers, Darren O’Grady, Neville Hynes, Gary Coffey, Derek McDonagh, Ciaran Callinan, Shane Gilhooley, Brian Carroll, Paulie McCarthy, Aidan Fahy, Kieran Kilkelly, Conor O’ Grady, Stephen Lawless, James Redmond, Stevie Duane, Johnny Mernagh, David Donohue, Shane Donohue and Paddy Flannery.

Senior

The A team also had a very successful season coming close to winning the clubs first Premier Division title losing only 3 games and taking reigning champions Mervue to a play off. The match was played in Terryland in front of a huge crowd with Athenry totally dominating the first half but unable to put away the chances created with Paddy Quinn and David Crimmins going close. Mervue scored twice in the second half with Johnny Mernagh getting a late consolation for Athenry to lose unluckily 2-1. Well done to the management team Peter Gilhooley. Timmy Holian and Tommy Fahy.

Both A and B teams did well in the Michael O’Byrne cup with the B team knocking out premier team Dynamo Blues and the 2 teams met in the quarter final in front of a big crowd in Raheen for the second year in a row with the A team coming out on top in a close contest. The score now stands at 1 each. The A team unluckily lost on penalties to Tuam Celtic in the semi-final. The A and B team Reserve teams both did well with the A team narrowly losing out in a play off to Corrib Bangers on penalties for the title and the B team finished a creditable third in their league.

Players who represented the club with distinction on Galway teams were Adrian Cronin and Johnny Mernagh.

Under Age

The under 18s came fifth in their league only losing 3 games and were unbeaten from October till the end of the season. They had a very young team with most of them under age again for next season. They narrowly lost to Mervue United in the Connacht cup quarter final in a replay. Great credit is due to management team Sean Mulroe and Paul Mitchell and their players.

The Under 16s finished third in the league and narrowly lost to Foyle Hibs in the cup final in Terryland losing only 5 games all season. Credit to management duo, Willie Killeen, Cormac McCarthy and their players.

The Under 15s finished second in their league losing only 3 games all season and again hardly losing a game since October under managers Cormac McCarthy and Willie Killeen.

The Under 13s finished fourth only losing 2 games and were unlucky in the cups. Well done to management team John Burke, Peter Gilhooley and Anthony O’Neill.

The Under 12s did very well in their first season in competitive football finishing mid-table under managers Peter Gilhooley, Tommy Fahy.

Our under 10s and 11s played in the annual 7 a side tournament in Mervue and all 4 teams did very well finishing third in their groups under managers Terry Nolan, Paul Kilkelly and Neville Hynes.

Every Saturday morning during the season Noel Fox and Tony O’Shaughnessy look after at least 40 new players aged 7 to 9 on the club’s all-weather pitch and arranged numerous 7 a side friendlies during the season which were enjoyed by all.

First team keeper Adrian Cronin started goal keeping coaching sessions for our juveniles during the season and all keepers showed a great improvement.

Players who represented the club with distinction on Galway teams were Thomas Flynn, Conor Cannon, Robert Kirwan, Joey Burke, David Farrell, Ray Moran, Cathal Fahy, Shane Gilhooley and Brian McDonagh.

Committee

The Athenry Soccer Club held their Annual General Meeting on Sunday 12th June. The following officers and committee were elected for Season 2005/2006:

Chairman: Cormac McCarthy, Secretary; Paul Mitchell, Treasurer: Timmy Holian, Pro: Michael Dunleavy, President: Peter Gilhooley. Committee Members: Alan Lynch, Emmet Byrne, Willie Killeen and Tommy Fahy

The Club wishes to thank outgoing Chairman Lester McNamara and committee members Eddie Fox and Micky Noone for their work over the last few years. We would also like to thank all last year’s committees and sub committees for their superb work last season. We would also like to thank Paul Fitzgerald for his work on the Finance Committee and wish him well on his travels.

Season 2005/2006

Our aim for the coming season is to continue to improve our superb facilities and our success on and of the field. We hope to produce a technical development plan (coaching structure) for all underage teams. Above all we will continue to provide an outlet for all senior and juvenile players in our community to play and enjoy soccer.

Training will commence for the new season for all senior and juvenile teams in July. Details will be available from the club house (Tel: 091-875939) in the next few weeks.

Booking for the all-weather pitch can also be made at the above number as well as gym membership.

Managers

Athenry Soccer Club are always looking for volunteers to help coach our under age and senior teams. We can always use help so if you are interested, please leave your name and contact number at our club house.