A ‘well organised and well attended rave party’, held in Glenseskin Woods, Kilworth was raided at 2am by local members of An Garda Siochana, with ‘a sizeable amount of drugs’ seized. The fifth such party to have been raided by gardai in the Fermoy division in little over a year, up to 20 uniformed and plain clothes gardai arrived at the scene, searching party-goers for illicit substances. The party, located in a large clearing just under a mile from the main picnic area into the forest, saw two marquees erected with a large sound system ‘booming out the music’ when gardai arrived. A ‘number of locals from the Mitchelstown area’ were reported as being in attendance, as well as ‘members of the New Age Traveller community’ – although no arrests were made, a file was being prepared for the DPP.

The results from the general election in 1997 were in, with the Cork East constituency ‘very much in line with the overall national trend’, as it returned two members each from the country’s two largest parties, namely Fine Gael and Fianna Fail. The Fine Gael ‘party machine’ was reported to be in ‘particularly jubilant mood’, as David Stanton, a first time candidate from Midleton, secured the fourth and final seat in the constituency, following a tight contest with Democratic Left’s, Joe Sherlock. Topping the poll and exceeding the quota with 8,737 first preference votes unsurprisingly was Ned O’Keeffe (FF); followed by party colleague, Michael Ahern elected on the 6th count, having secured 6,959 first preference votes. Polling an impressive 7,859 first preference votes, Fine Gael’s Paul Bradford secured the third available seat on the 7th count, while Stanton was elected on the following count, having initially received 5,117 first preference votes. The ‘big loser on the day’ was Labour’s John Mulvihill, who lost the seat he won in 1992, with Joe Sherlock tasting disappointment for the second election in a row.

‘The Spout’, a natural spring located on the town side of Lismore bridge, was ‘a cause for concern’ in June 1997. Traditionally used by residents of the town for the washing of cars, Davy Whelan highlighted at a meeting of Lismore Town Commissioners that he had received complaints about litter being left in the vicinity. Stating car owners availing of the facility were leaving ‘their Fairy Liquid bottles and other rubbish behind them once their vehicles had received the once over’, Mr Whelan also cited the ‘possible dangers of pollution’, given the fact that ‘tractors with various fertilizers or chemicals attached were now availing of The Spout’ – the resultant run-off eventually ending up in the nearby Blackwater river. However, it was pointed out that as the location was not the property of the county council, being privately owned, it appeared it was business as normal, unless the owners decided otherwise.

McDonagh Terrace in Fermoy – better known locally as The Range – was the scene of a serious accident in June 1997, when an articulated lorry carrying a heavy load of solid concrete beams, overbalanced and crashed into the old historic wall, causing much damage in the process. One resident living near the scene of the crash, ‘abruptly woken out of sleep by the crash’ before 7am, described the incident as sounding more like an explosion rather than a collision, such was the force of the impact. Luckily no one was injured.

Sunnyside Fruit Farm was one of two soft fruit producers in County Cork, and amongst 26 recipients nationwide, to receive the first ever National Hygiene Awards for the sector. Proprietor John Howard accepted the award from outgoing Junior Agriculture Minister, Jimmy Deenihan, at the An Bord Glas organised event.

A goal 5 minutes from time from Eddie Walsh ensured Mitchelstown’s Park United FC survived another season in the top flight, in their final league game of the season. With nothing less than a home win sufficient against Passage, things were looking grim at half-time, as the visitors led 0-1. However, a great individual goal courtesy of Anthony O’Brien restored hope 30 minutes into the second period for Park, before Walsh’s late strike ensured premiership survival.

Triple success for Fermoy Tug-of-War Club in June 1997, securing the 640Kg senior, catchweight senior and 5-a-side 450Kg categories in the Munster championship league. Team members included: Tom Rice, John Rice, Ned Rice, Pat Lee, Con Twomey, Billy Kent and Tim Ahern.