10th January, 2002
Notice Board

DougIas Village Shopping Centre are
giving away €15,000

Commencing 11 January, Douglas Village Shopping Centre will give away €l5,000 over five weeks to local community groups. Each time a shopper spends €l0.00 or more from any store in the Centre they show their receipt to the Information Desk staff who will validate their receipt and entry form. They then nominate their community group, with the name and address, plus their name and address. Each week at 7.00 pm on Friday 18, 25 January and 1, 8 & 15 February three winning entries will he drawn from the barrel and they will win €I,000 each. The person nominating the winning entries each week will win €I00 in shopping vouchers. The competition barrel will be cleared each week The rules and regulations for entering the competition can be read on the back of the entry forms which will be available from the Information Desk.


Two years ago the Douglas Weekly printed the horrific story, told to us by a reader, who had spent his formative years as an inmate in St Patrick’s Upton. Recently that same reader who is now a mature gentleman spoke to us again and gave us an update of his experiences. In order to put things in prospective we are repeating the original interview over the next two weeks and then continuing with the update. For obvious reasons we are withholding the names of those involved.

The Only Home I Knew

St Philomena's Home in Stillorgan in Dublin was an adoption place. What happened there was, every so often we were lined up and people looking to adopt would walk down the line and pick out who they wanted. The rest were sent to Artane or St Joesph's in Clonmel and some, like me were sent to Upton. I don't know how long I was in St, Philomena's, but I was about nine years old at that time. It was 1948.
At that time there were 600 boys in Upton aged from about nine to fifteen. At sixteen they were sent out to work on farms, the lucky ones got into the army. Conditions were appalling, there were three or four of us brought in every evening and made cut up loads of bread and dip the pieces into a vat of lard,
then two pieces at a time were clamped together and left over night. In the morning that was your breakfast. Once a week, as a weekend treat there was porridge, and then around Easter you got an egg, That was a rare privilege, to get an egg, even though they had a bloody chicken farm down there. We never, absolutely never got anything like chocolate. But we were hardy young fellows. So were the people in charge.
There was one a man who was from Kilkenny; he was a right demon. He would catch a boy by the ear and literally lift him off his feet then drag him the length of the church before letting go, all over some misdemeanour. There was another priest who was a gentleman but he was sent away to Africa. His replacement was a man from the North. He had a leather strap about a foot long, made up of two strips of leather with four half-crowns in between, he'd take down your pants make you bend over and wallop you - and that was severe. Then there was the priest who heard our confessions. He was also an alcoholic. My story with him was that when one of the Brothers tried to abuse me, I went to confession and told the priest. Some time later that particular brother called me into his office and claimed I had made an accusation against him. I denied it; I was looking stupid at him after all what is said in confession is sacrosanct. He made me take down my pants and hammered the daylights out of me. A year later the priest to whom I had gone to confession became very friendly towards me. It turned out he was also a sex abuser. At night he'd take you out of your bed and bring you upstairs to his room saying he wanted to talk, then he'd lie down on the bed and get you to masturbate him. That's as true as I'm here, that's they way it happened to me, and I couldn't tell anyone because I knew I was for it if I did. And I wasn't the only one, it was happening to others as well. About ten years ago I came back and met that priest and he apologised to me and said it was due to his alcoholism. If that is so then it's his problem. I believe he has since been transferred to Scotland, he's probably doing the same thing over there.
Then there was the cook, when he had finished the meals for the brothers and priests he'd call you into the pantry to help with some job and come up behind and start abusing you. And there was nothing you could do about it. There was no one to report it to. Anyway at that time who would have believed you back then in the 'fifties?
Whenever I go back I always visit the grave of John Curley. Nobody knew him properly. Between the two dormitories there were a couple of utility rooms and he was kept on one of them. I was asked to bring something to him one day, I don't remember what it was, but I can remember coming into the room and seeing him lying there in a bed on his stomach with his intestines out through his back passage. He was there for about nine months, then he died. There wasn't a word about it. No inquiry, he was an orphan and nobody asked any questions. He was left there to die alone and that's why I always visit his grave.
At night time a lame man used to go around with a walking stick, he lived over the kitchens beside the church, so the heat would come up through the floorboards. In the winter we went to bed at 8o'clock and in the summer it was ten. This man would come around every two hours and make us go to the toilet, if we were asleep he'd whack us with the stick to get up. There were only two toilets for the entire group. If anybody wet the bed he'd whip off the sheets and beat him with the stick, then report him for bed wetting, and he'd get another beating in the morning. The dormitory was segregated, the bedwetters at one end and the rest at the other. Then there were the rats. The place was infested with rats. Our night watchman used to go around killing them and they'd always be a few dead ones lying around every morning. I even remember killing a couple of them myself with a shovel.
As well as the night watchman, there were other laymen, but these were mostly farm labourers and odd job men. Then there were the Nuns. There were three Nuns in a separate building; they were very passionate people and the only ones that ever nursed us and looked after us. Then one morning they were gone, transferred to Bandon. No one knows what happened. There was some scandal going around but I don't know what it was. Maybe they found out what was going on; I don't know. Years later I met one of the Nuns and all she would say " I can' believe how the hell young fellows survived in that place"
To be continued

The History of Douglas by Con Foley

Part 71 - “The Short Mile"

This is the next milestone beyond the old Guards' Barrack, near Harding's Well and on the same side. It says 'Cork three miles" but the distance from there to the two mile stone near the barrack is less than three quarters of a mile. During the struggle for independence in 1920 when the British Authorities imposed a five o'clock curfew on Sunday evenings within a three mile limit of the city centre, some of the local people who used assemble every Sunday evening to play cards in a certain house on Carr's Hill found to their annoyance that their meeting place was within the three mile limit. So, they promptly lifted the milestone and re-sited it nearer Douglas! It has remained in its present position ever since. Five local men were involved in the removal of the milestone, which was done on a Saturday afternoon. Some years ago the late Eoin O'Mahony, noted genealogist1 raised the matter at a County Council meeting but no decision to return the stone to its original position was made. The late Eoin ("Pope") 0'Mahony's family residence "Loch Meadhon" stood on the site now taken up by the Mahon Garage, Douglas Road.


Question my car was registered in 1997 and I believe it will have to be tested before I can renew my motor tax. will I be notified when my test is due?
Answer If your car is due to be tested, you should be notified by mail approximately 6 to 8 weeks before the anniversary date of first registration of your car. If you do not have a valid Test certificate you will not be able to tax your car.
The National Car Test came into operation on the 4th January 2000. The testing of private cars (including second hand imports) has been phased in as follows:
For the year 2000 it applied to cars first registered before Ist January 1992
In 2001 it applied to all cars first registered between 1992 and 1996
For the year 2002 and onwards it applies to all 4 year old cars and eligible older cars i.e. pre-92 registered cars tested in the year 2000 will be eligible for testing again in year 2002 because testing is every 2 years.
All cars tested up to 8 weeks before the anniversary date of first registration of their car whether this registration was in Ireland or abroad. There is no link with motor tax or insurance expiry date. Cars classified as vintage cars for motor tax purposes and cars permanently based on islands not connected to the mainland by road or roll on-roll off ferry are exempt from the test.
The National Car Testing Service (NCTS) contacts owners of eligible motor vehicles based on official vehicle records. However there are a number of reasons why notification may not be sent e.g. the car has been out of tax for a number of months.
If you are not notified and your car is eligible for testing you should contact NCTS via email at or by phone at their LoCall booking line 1890412413. If you are not notified and you are unable to renew your car tax you should contact their booking department and they will be able to give you priority booking.
Further information is available from Cobh Citizens Information Centre, The Parish Centre, Roches. Row Cobh. Tel: 4814422.


The provision of additional car parking space in Carrigaline is an absolute necessity. I am delighted therefore that the ‘part ten' planning process has been initiated to provide a 98 space extension to the existing car park at Owenabue in Carrigaline It is hoped that substantial progress will be made on the construction of same this year.
This will certainly alleviate many of the parking difficulties experienced by motorists in the Carrigaline area. It is a move which I have been promoting, along with my colleague, Cllr. Barry Cogan, for some time. Batt O’Keeffe TD


By Josephine O’Herlihy Solicitor.

The Euro changeover may have distracted a lot of us for the first few days of the New Year but this is always an opportune time to make a few resolutions and review circumstances. Here are a few resolutions:

If you have not already made a Will, make one! Dying intestate (without having made a Will) may lead to certain difficulties in the administration of your Estate and it is always better to have your intentions clearly defined in a written document. It is good practice to review the provisions of your Will as changes may have occurred in your life and the lives of others over the past 12 months which may necessitate amendments to the provisions in your Will.

Even though there has been a slowdown in the property market over the past 6 months, your property is still more valuable now than it was this time last year – make sure your property is adequately insured to cover all risks and check that the contents insurance is also adequate. If you under-insure, the proceeds of any claim on your Policy may be proportionately reduced by the under-valuation.

With the taxation changes made in the Christmas Budget (the reduction of the 9% Stamp Duty rate for Investors or second home owners and the re-instatement of interest relief for Investors), it is worth considering investing in property. It is now a very good time to purchase property firstly due to the slowdown in the property market and secondly as economic indicators expect the Economy to commence growth in the second half of this year. A second home or holiday home is now a realistic possibility again and is no longer taxed punitively.

Everyone tries to improve their health and fitness in the New Year but so many people do not make themselves visible enough while walking and jogging on our roads in the dark. If you are not properly lit up with reflectors and are unlucky enough to be involved in a road traffic accident the fact that you are not visible is deemed contributory negligence on your part and any award which may be given will be proportionately reduced.

Happy New Year to you all!


“Babs” the car that took Darry Thomas to 171.02 M.P.H in 1926, before shedding a drive chain and decapitating him at Pendine Sands a year later, has been restored and is now in a museum close to the scene. His family buried the car at the fatal spot but it was found a few years ago and removed from beneath 2000 cubic feet of sand and a nine inch thick concrete slab. No record breaker ever used chain drive after that.
Dan Dempsey's 24 hour rescue & Recovery, Kinsale 086-8217777



So it's the new year, you've partied till you could party no more, and now
you have to think of going back to school, and work, leaving all that
Christmas fun behind and think seriously for a change. Uuurgghh! Now, if
the last thing you want to do at the moment is think seriously, then read
on. Because not only have I compiled a list of the top 5 artists to keep an
eye on over the next year, but I have also compiled a list of the top 5
things you will promise not to do in the New Year that involve music (of

1. Damien Rice: one of the most awesomely talented musicians I have ever had
the pleasure of seeing live, Damien is set for big, big things, believe me!
The ex-front man of Juniper (now the wonderful Bellx1) will release his new
album, 'O', in early February, and his current single, the haunting
'Blower's Daughter', is currently for sale. Buy it and you will not be
2. Duncan Maitland: you might not have a clue he is from just the name, but
if I tell you that he used to be a guitarist in Picturehouse, does that ring
any bells? Probably! His new music, which I had the pleasure of hearing
live and on demo, is both strikingly different to that of his old band's,
(very like Elliott Smith), and yet strikingly similar, with its infectious
choruses and expertly crafted guitar melodies. His debut single, 'Terry The
Toad' should be out this month.
3. Carla Hennessy: a name that very little of you have ever heard, but one
that you will be hearing a lot of in the coming year. Only 18 yrs old,
Carla has been recording her pop/indie (think an Irish Alanis Morissette)
tunes with huge US producers and is set to break the Irish pop market in a
major way this year.
4. Gemma Hayes: hailing from Ballyporeen, Co.Tipperary (but don't hold that
against her.), Gemma has been holed up in the studios in -where else? - the
good ol' US of A this year, working on her forthcoming debut album. She has
released two eps, '4.35am' and 'Work To A Calm', which gave us a little
taste of what to expect - unbelievable rock/lo-fi/indie music, guitar based
melodies with amazing vocals. I currently have her 'Work To A Calm' album
in my Discman and am absolutely jealous of her musical talent. Bah!
5. The-popstars-band-whose-name-I-don't-know-yet: unless you've been
hibernating underground for the past few weeks, then you'll know all about
the cringe-worthy RTE programme, Popstars. When we've laughed at the people who can't sing, the hideous outfits and ridiculous comparisons to other
artists 'Louis Walsh thinks you look like a young Dana/ Britney Spears/
Christina Aguilera', then we can follow the future of a pop band that, like
Hearsay before them, will have one no.1 single and fade quickly into
obscurity. Terrible stuff, but interesting in a morbid way, all the same.

1. Mothers/fathers: I will not play Mary Black/Andrea Bocceli/the Eagles at
full volume in the kitchen when my children are trying to eat. It has been
clinically proven to inhibit digestion and/or promote regurgitation in
anyone under 40.
2. Sons/daughters: I shall not play Slipknot/Limp Bizkit/Cradle of Filth at
full volume in my bedroom at 1 in the morning when my family is trying to
get to sleep. Even if I sleep in the daytime and come out at night, this is
still not acceptable behaviour.
3. Elder brothers/sisters: just because I discover a band whose album has
been produced by Steve Albini, engineered by Butch Vig, written by William
S.Borroughs, and recorded in Abbey Road with Eddie Vedder on vocals, Lemmy on bass Slash on lead guitar and Dave Grohl drumming, it does not mean my family will share my enthusiasm - because they won't have a clue what I am harping on about anyway, and I will just sound like a poser.
4. Fathers: air guitar is not cool, ok? Even if it is Led Zeppelin's
'Stairway to Heaven', it looks stupid and is embarrassing when done in front
of your children's potential boyfriends/girlfriends.
5. Family Gatherings: singing, of any nature, is not encouraged at family
parties. Period.


New Year Céili
The Owenabue Valley Traditional Group start off their sixth year of Céili in Carrigaline G.A.A. Pavilion with the popular Séan Norman Céili Band from Edenderry on Saturday next Jan. 12th . As usual dancing at Ireland's Premier Venue commences sharp at 9:30 p.m. and continues to 1:30 am with a break for tea at 11:30 p.m. Admission € 7, patrons are requested to have the correct change ready for everyone's convenience. Another great night is assured.

Volunteers Required
If you enjoy meeting people and feel that you could explain about entitlements and services in simple layperson's language then you might consider becoming a volunteer at the Cobh Citizens Information Centre. We provide a free, confidential and impartial service to the public. Your commitment will be 2 hours per fortnight.
Please call in to see us at the Parish Centre, Roches Row Cobh or phone 4814422 to discover more about the services we provide.


Beginners Thursday Jan 17th @ 7.30pm. Intermediate Bidding Jan 21st @ 7.30pm. Open Bridge every Friday Night @ 7.30pm.

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