No getting away from water charges! It was announced in October 1995 that the Northern Division of Cork County Council was set to see an increase for all users in 1996. A £5 increase for those with a domestic supply – from £80 to £85; Commercial rates would increase from £110 to £120, while establishments such as hotels would see an increase in charges of £15, from £165 up to £180 in 1996. Premises where water charges were calculated by the metre would see an increase of £0.10 per 1,000 gallons, up to £1.75.

The streetscape in Mitchelstown was receiving a timely boost, with ‘a number of major commercial changes’ reportedly going ahead’. A new fast food chain was set to operate from the premises formerly known as Houlihan’s in in Lower Cork Street. While rumours circulating indicated that a financial institution, ‘thought to be TSB Bank’, had purchased a building on the main street – however the bank failed to confirm such a move. Finally, a ‘delicatessen type business’ was understood to have secured a premises, also on Lower Cork Street. The commercial activity in the town was ‘warmly welcomed’ by the local business association, indicating a ‘a vote of confidence for the area’.

A deputation from the Bartlemy Image Improvement Group made their feelings known at the Northern Roads Committee meeting in October 1995, regarding the ‘absence of  signposting for Bartlemy at Dr Barry’s Bridge’. Group representative, John Arnold, noted ‘two large directional signs’ were being placed close to the bridge at the junction of the N8 and the R626/628 regional routes, for both Tallow and Midleton, with no signage for Bartlemy, which was the case in the past. He referred to the Tidy Towns report in 1995, which stated that ‘the village was not adequately signposted’, recommending steps be taken to improve the situation. A report on the matter was to be published for the reconvening of the Committee at their November 1995 meeting.

Plans for the proposed traffic calming measures and refurbishment works for Rathcormac village went on public display in October 1995. A scaled-down model of the Council’s plans was put on display, with input sought from the public and community groups. Refurbishment works were to include new footpaths to ‘run the full length of the village’, placing overhead wiring underground, as well as a new drainage scheme.

Sheahan’s Hilltop Lounge in Kildorrery was the venue where Billy Kelly, retiring treasurer of the Tankardstown-Ballyguyroe  Group Water Scheme, was honoured for his involvement with the group, having played a leading part in its foundation in 1967. By his own admission, Billy said it was an ‘extremely tough assignment’ to get the scheme up and running, as they were unable to tap into any existing Council water supply and therefore had to supply all their own equipment. Speaking at the function, secretary Matt Coughlan, stated that the group were never in the red and through shrewd management and careful planning, ‘the people of the area were completely self-sufficient for all their water needs’. Other members of the founding committee were Ned Coughlan, chairman; Jack Hannon, secretary and Joseph Carver, joint treasurer.

Some items of note in the Classified columns of The Avondhu in October 1995 – An antique lace wedding dress (1950s), as well as a handmade cotton crochet bedspread (over 100 years old) for sale. Also for sale, a ‘donkey car on rubber in need of repair, also 2 female 12 month old white goats, good milk strain, cheap lot’; ‘Good home wanted for a large amount of building rubble, to be collected’; Wanted – £30,000 loan needed to purchase small business, willing to pay back same monthly with modest interest.

Hurling enthusiasts were salivating at the thought of viewing Cork senior hurlers take on beaten All-Ireland finalists Offaly, in Fermoy, under the new management of the ‘dream team’ – Jimmy Barry-Murphy and selectors Tom Cashman and Tony O’Sullivan. It was hoped the ‘fab three’ would revive the county’s hurling fortunes.

Other sporting headlines – Galbally junior B hurlers, captained by John Kiely, claimed the Limerick county title, defeating Killeedy in Bruff; Killavullen were crowned North Cork U21 B hurling champions, defeating neighbours Castletownroche on a scoreline of 1-10 to 1-6, the game being played in Ballyhooly – David Heavin captained the side; Lismore retained their Western junior football championship crown, defeating Colligan comprehensively 1-10 to 1-06; Brendan Ormonde was captain.