Keeping a tradition going in Fermoy

THESE FELLAS HAVE EVERYTHING COVERED: Ken Butterworth and William Hughes, with one of re-covered snooker tables. Facilities in Fermoy are considered some of the best in the country. (Picture: John Ahern)

To generations of Fermoy people, it was known as ‘the young mens’ – back then the Catholic Youth Men’s Society. Endorsed by the Catholic hierarchy, these associations were viewed as respectable locations, where ‘good’ Irish Catholic men could unwind, we presume after Mass, confession or benediction. 

In a sign of the times, ‘catholic societys’ have dwindled to only a handful of locations throughout the country. However, Fermoy continues to fly the flag and to stay relevant, they’ve changed with the times. 

“It’s all about being inclusive now, religion doesn’t come into it, it’s about people, relaxing in comfortable surroundings, while playing either snooker or pool” – so says long serving treasurer and someone who has amassed the odd century break along the way, Ken Butterworth from MacCurtain Street. 


Speaking to The Avondhu this week, Ken said that it’s vital to maintain the premises to a very high standard. 

“You have to really, if things start to slip at all, you see it straight away. Most recently we spent over €3,000 covering snooker and pool tables, we’re very happy with the finished product. The tables are now in excellent condition,” he said. 


For those looking to track down former Fermoy mayor, William ‘Bomber’ Hughes, checking out the Catholic Men and Women’s Society Hall in Fermoy is a good starting point. Taking time out to speak to The Avondhu after some neat potting and trademark safety play, William said great credit was due to Ken and the committee. 

“To be fair, Ken is always around the place, it’s a great facility, especially during the winter evenings. Things are very well run” William said. 


Committee members will be out in force in Fermoy this Friday (16th September) seeking support for their annual flag day (street collection). They will be at all strategic locations and would appreciate any assistance you can give them. The CMWS Hall in Fermoy continues to welcome new members.