A deliberate campaign of dumping was being waged against Mitchelstown’s Tidy Towns efforts by unknown individuals; the perpetrator(s) were dumping bundles of ‘meticulously cut newspaper’ clippings from a car over a 12-week period towards areas that had been tidied by AROMA and other volunteers, and were left to be dealt with by the litter warden.

Ballyporeen artist Gemma Hayes was the first Irish artist to ever be nominated for a Mercury Music Prize; she achieved the feat with her debut album ‘Night on my Side’.

Mitchelstown Music Festival was gearing up for a hectic weekend, where for the first time there was a charge. €10 would get a ticket to see popband SIX with their support acts; two-metre high blackout fences were being erected in New Square to make sure only ticket-holders would see the action. Mary Black would be playing for free on the Sunday night, as would Juliet Turner on Sunday night.

For another type of star-gazing, the Cork Astronomy Club were planning a ‘star barbeque’/observation meeting in Fermoy. Beginning in Corrin carpark at 11pm, they were hoping to see the Persides meteor shower. 

Meanwhile, Clogheen Festival was set to host a 5km Road Race, a wife-carrying race, sheep racing, a slave auction, and a fancy dress parade. At nearby Burncourt Festival, where the bride (James Butler) and the groom (Theresa Mulcahy) were matched, the ‘Wedding of the Year’ was deemed a huge success. 

Castlelyons celebrated as ‘Vinthea’, owned by local businessman Colman O’Flynn, placed first at the Galway Races in the McDonagh Handicap. In other success, Fermoy won the ‘Cork County Inter Litter Challenge’, while Castletownroche had to settle for second place in their category.

Mobile phones were a relatively new arrival in 2002, and in that spirit Fermoy gardaí placed a personal message in The Avondhu for Willie and Catherine Ryan from Breichin in Scotland. They were touring the south of Ireland in a grey Citroen Xantia, and were asked to contact home for an urgent message. In the same era, Lidl were selling a fax machine for €189; it would take seven seconds to print one page.

Kilbehenny kids were treated to an inspection of a helicopter as a Dublin businessman performed an emergency landing in the village (did someone say Celtic Tiger?). The stricken individual was up in the air after locals lent the stranded Dub the necessary tools for repairs.

Members of FRAAG (the Fermoy River Amenity Action Group) held a fish-in protest against the Fermoy Salmon Anglers’ Associations plans to ‘control the Fermoy Town Fishery’. Richmond Hill residents in the town continued to lobby for a 15mph speed limit, saying that ‘go slow’ road markings were making no difference to speeding drivers.

The Fermoy Vintage Tractor Road Run was launched at The Counting House in Cork city. Willie Broderick with his brother John, transported a 1936 Massey Harris GP 4-Wheel drive up for the occasion, and a reception was held at the Beamish and Crawford complex, where people’s thirst was ‘well and truly quenched’. 

The restored and renovated ‘Pilgrim’s Rest’ Hotel reopened at Mount Melleray in Waterford, while O’Callahgan’s Deli in Mitchelstown was awarded the Feile Bia award.

In Glenroe, Dave Wallace took gold in the senior scullls at the Home international competition in Strathclyde Park, and silver in the quad. These achievements came just a week after the rower took silver in the British National Rowing Championships. Elsewhere in the water, Kilworth angler Ray O’Sullivan was to once again represent Ireland at the European Angling Championships in Noway.

The Kilbehenny Brownies and Guides were pictured having written to Tony Blair, then PM of Great Britain, expressing their fears about Sellafield Nuclear Power Plant. 

In Galbally, the community council rejected a proposal for a communal cemetery in Kilmallock; it had already been rejected by the communities of Anglesborough, Ballylanders and Kilbehenny, as ‘people from the Galtee foothills are entitled to be laid to rest in their native districts’.

In brief – Cappoquin’s Thérése Byrne won the National final of Miss Macra in 2002. While the Wolfe Tones were due to return to their ‘spiritual home’ to play in the ‘world famous Castletownroche Dome’. 

Fermoy GAA launched their fundraising drive for the Fitzgerald Park development in the Pitch and Putt Club, while the club’s U14 ladies footballers were in the county final against Glanworth. Elsewhere, the U14B boys from Mill Rovers were the North Cork hurling champions. 

Finally, in The Favourite in Mitchelstown, Jack Hyland was pictured saying goodbye to long-term staff member Helen Landers-Boland, Kildorrery, who was leaving the outlet after 20 years of service.