A large crowd, estimated at ‘well over 1,000’, participated in a March for Peace in February 1996 through Fermoy town, in response to a breakdown in the Peace Process in Northern Ireland. Marching from McCarthy’s Garage on Cork Road, participants ranging in age ‘from the very young to the very old’, made their way to the Court House on the Tallow Road, where members of the local clergy, Fr Leahy and Rev Haworth, both recited short prayers. Mary Hickson, one of the march organisers, told The Avondhu that the numbers present gave her “great heart”, noting that “all our futures depend on a resumption of peace”.

Ballyporeen county councillor, Con O’Donovan was to bring a parliamentary question before the Minister for Justice, Deputy Nora Owen, in relation to the future status of the village’s Garda station. He had received complaints from parishioners over the absence of a Garda presence, with previous incumbent Garda Liam O’Reilly having been transferred to Cork some months previous. He was looking for the situation to be rectified as soon as possible.

For the first time in the history of Lismore Town Commissioners, the town’s first citizen was set to have a chain of office to wear at all official occasions. A Fermoy jeweller was commissioned to design the chain, costing in the region of £1,000. The cost was being met equally by the Duke of Devonshire, whose Irish residence was at Lismore Castle, and by the Dowd family, with Peter being 1996 chairman of the town commissioners.

March 4th, 1966 was the year Mitchelstown Credit Union first opened its doors to the public – the little acorn had now become the giant oak, as 30 years on in 1996, 30th anniversary celebrations were marking what was yet another significant milestone for the branch. An address by President Maire Corbett through the pages of The Avondhu, stated that the ‘philosophy of ‘Service to People’ was sustained for thirty years’, and the unique financial institution, was democratic, member owned and people oriented.

Work had commenced on a housing development at Oliver Plunkett Hill, Fermoy, consisting of four dwellings. Contractor Michael Lyons, Araglin was aiming to have the units ready for occupation by Autumn 1996 and on completion, would be offered for rent by Fermoy Urban District Council, who had purchased the site in 1990. Fast forward to 2016, where a 10-unit housing block along the Hill is now nearing completion for social housing.

‘Aon Focal Eile’ man, Richie Kavanagh was heading for the Village Arts Centre, Kilworth – claimed to be ‘Ireland’s funniest man’, he had a string of other catchy tunes for patrons, including ‘The Pothole Song’, ‘Fagan’s Chipper Van’, ‘Ferguson Tractor’ and ‘A Travelling Man’.

‘The Country Boy’, under the direction of Michael Riordan for Conna Dramatic Society, was set to take the stage in March 1996. The cast of six included Tom Cotter, Anne Hayes and Anne Barry. While in Fermoy, Colaiste an Chraoibhin and Open Mind Theatre Group were preparing for ‘Camelot’ – cast members included Lisa Pierce, Kay McDonnell, John Baldwin and Anthony Canning.

Kilworth Dramatic Society’s production of ‘Big Maggie’ opened under the direction of Bill Hammond. The cast included Peg Coughlan in the title role, along with Charlie McCarthy, John Shields, Tricia Coughlan, Michael Lovett, Joan Hanlon, Kevin Barry, Nora Hamilton, Mary Dunne, Elaine Gowen and Tom Kiely.

Thanks to ‘Goal King Paul’, Killavullen junior B footballers had a successful start to their league campaign in 1996, overcoming Kildorrery on a scoreline of 2-7 to 1-6. Starting with only 13 players due to a mix-up in times, Killavullen were 4 points in arrears at half-time, however Paul Reilly’s 2 second half goals proved the difference in the end.

In brief – A ‘routine search’ under the Misuse of Drugs Act on an individual by Sgt Kieran Barry in Mitchelstown, saw a ‘substantial’ amount of cannabis seized – the man was set to appear in court. Anne Sherlock, Parknakilla, was the first winner of the Mitchelstown Community Leisure Project Lotto, claiming the £5,200 jackpot courtesy of the numbers 4, 5, 6 and 20 – the lotto had only been running for 21 weeks. Waterford county Scor success for Ballysaggart man Seamus Linnane, who took top honours in the recitation section in St Michael’s Hall, Ballyduff, as well as being presented with the McAllister Shield for best overall performer on the night.