Buddy’s Toy, a seven-year-old mare owned by a Fermoy syndicate, brought riches to many locals when the 100/1 outsider came home in first place in the Novice Hurdle in Towcaster. Bookmakers said a ‘sizeable’ number of local people had availed of the top odds, with others only getting her at 50/1, or her eventual 33/1 starting price. A special homecoming was held in Mac’s Bar, Fermoy with members of the Flynn and Keegan families.

A follow-on article on fireworks appeared in The Avondhu with a slightly graver and more serious tone than the previous one published, with one man who lived alone saying the recent experience of fireworks outside his door ‘was very frightening and took a bit out of him’.

The editorial in November 2001 asked for contributors to please be a bit more careful with their handwriting; “One of the problems from our point of view here in The Avondhu is that when we get a name wrong, the injured party can only see us as being illiterate, or stupid, or both”. It may be inferred that this referred to a piece in the previous week’s paper, in which the Mhícheál Mac Gearailt Cumann (Fermoy Fianna Fáil Cumann) was misnamed as the Liam MacGearailt Cumann.

The people of Kilworth were looking forward to the unveiling of a plaque to local rower Gearoid Towey, where a parade would also be held with the Castlelyons Pipe Band in attendance. Meanwhile in Galbally in South Limerick, they were similarly planning to honour their local star, rugby player Jeremy Staunton, when he had availability.

After some discussion amongst parishioners, it was decided to renovate Fermoy’s ‘Army Church’, the Queen of Peace Church. The works were costed at £200,000 and the Parish Council decided to press ahead immediately with a door-to-door collection, where people were asked to give as much as they could manage.

Following from the previous week’s headline news that the Fermoy Business Association were to adopt a ‘name and shame’ policy for contributors (or lack thereof) to the Christmas lights, a statement was issued by chair Peter Merrigan: “Christmas is supposed to be a time to celebrate the birth of Jesus… Is a brightly lit, cheerful and peaceful Fermoy too much to desire and is a little support such a big sacrifice?”

Lidl had a full-page ad in The Avondhu to celebrate their new store opening in Fermoy. The advert explained the concept of the Thursday release of non-food items, and that week offered a coat rack, unisex jackets, an infrared lamp, as well as an iced butter marble cake for £2.19. Riordan’s SuperValu also had an advert, with their deals and the tagline “supporting the local community for the past 35 years”.

Castlelyons’ Bachelor Festival was in full swing, and in the latest heat first place was taken by Paul Bradford, and second place was a tie between James Fenton and Ger McCarthy.

Elsewhere, though it was only 2001, the phrase ‘these post-Tiger times’ appeared in the Letters page.

Harry Potter fans flocked to Fermoy cinema to see the first film in the franchise, but some had to be turned away because it was full, with advance booking advised. ‘Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone’ was the first film to be shown on the centre’s new £12,000 screen. The cinema had also secured rights for the opening day of ‘Lord of the Rings’ later in the year.

Sugar beet growers were defiant as a dispute over prices dragged on in factories in Mallow and Carlow. Amongst those camped outside the Greencore factory in Mallow was Castletownroche grower Richard Quirke, who said ‘Greencore was wrong if they thought Irish sugar beet farmers would be bullied or brow beaten.”

The Fermoy Image Improvement Group were looking forward to their annual Community Awards, where winners would receive awards for, amongst other things, the efforts to maintain their front gardens and hanging baskets.

Lest anyone accuse Ireland of being slow on the uptake, 21 years ago Lismore Commissioners welcomed Waterford County Council’s new initiative, to separate the recycling items from the waste. “In other parts of Europe, waste separation is already at an advanced stage… many of the major towns and cities even have their litter bins separated for recycling.”

Castletownroche celebrated a ‘clean sweep’ at the Litter Free Roadside competition, winning 99 points out of a possible 100, and Conna came in second in the North Cork winners. In category 2, Fermoy came second to Skibbereen.

Ballyhooly junior B footballers, captained by Padraig Burke, were defeated in the county final by Argideen Rangers, on a scoreline 1-15 to 1-9.