An interesting entry into the ‘Garda Report’ in October 1997 read: ‘Budgie flew into house at Gurrane, Fermoy on 29th September. Owner can have details from Garda Station’. If only Twitter was available then…

It was reported in October 1997 that ‘extensive plans’ to extend facilities at Fermoy town’s ‘flagship factory’, SCI, located on the Rathealy Road were under way. Reliable sources informed The Avondhu that a city based contractor had already moved in to clear the site for the anticipated development. Working at full capacity, it was known that on-site storage of ‘established production operatives’ had ‘become a problem’, having to be transported from Little Island to assist in operations. However, management at SCI ‘would neither confirm or deny that expansion plans were afoot’, only stating that matters would be dealt with, in full, once a senior member of management returned from holidays.

A gentleman ‘with a fondness for harp music went to elaborate lengths… to be entertained’ in 1997. Having been ‘so taken’ by a recording of a young lady harpist, he insisted on seeing her perform live. Hiring a section of Lismore Castle for a week, he put the wheels in motion to fly the Scottish based harpist across the Irish Sea for a performance. ‘The excited lady, harp under arm, was greeted at Cork Airport by a driver who took her to the picturesque West Waterford town’ and following a ‘lavish banquet, the harpist tuned up and played away until the early hours’. The gentleman was reported to have been ‘delighted’ with the recital, while the young lady said she had ‘great craic’. That’s one way to spend your money!

Ex Manchester United football star, George Best, was announced as special guest to perform the official opening at the 1997 Cork Modern Homes & Building Exhibition.

Eileen Meade, a teacher and principal of Gortrue National School for 22 years and principal of Glenahulla NS for 18 years, called time on her teaching career. Having the ‘unusual distinction’ of being immediately appointed as principal in the first school she taught in, the Mitchelstown woman recalled to The Avondhu her early years, remembering open fires in the classroom, where facilities were basic. Bernie Young succeeded her as headmistress of Glenahulla NS.

The unexpected death of Most Rev John J Ahern, former Bishop of Cloyne, was reported in October 1997. The Leamlara native had faithfully served those in the diocese for some 30 years and resigned in February 1987, to be succeeded by Bishop John Magee.

Unexpectedly locating a 28oz bowl thought to have been long lost, while on a fishing trip near Kilworth bridge, brough childhood memories flooding back for Gerry Keating. His father, Jer ‘Champ’ Keating, a ‘famed bowler of the 40s, 50s and 60s’, was a common sight on the roads of Kilworth and Glanworth during this period. Gerry recalled one fine summer’s evening, over thirty years previous, when his father was out bowling near Kilworth bridge when a big throw saw his bowl hit a stone, causing it to fly over a ditch. In spite of extensive searches, the bowl was declared lost. However, while making his way to fish the local river in 1997, Gerry literally stumbled upon the ‘undisturbed bowl’. An emotional moment for the Kilworth man, who ‘cleaned the bowl and remembered fondly the hours of enjoyment it had provided to its original owner’. He later presented a set of the 28oz bowls to international bowler, Billy McAuliffe in Mac’s Bar, Glanworth.

Captained by Una Downey, Kildorrery ladies football team drew with Rockchapel in the U16 A Cork county final, played at Mallow. Scoring 3-11 (versus 5-5 for Rockchapel), Kildorrery’s goals came from Ann Marie O’Callaghan, Niamh Hickey and Colette O’Dwyer.

Recording their fourteenth win from sixteen competitive outings, St Catherines U14 hurlers claimed the Cork county final (country section) at Mayfield in September 1997, comprehensively defeating Brian Dillons 5-12 to 1-3. Captain was Liam Kearney.

Following a replay, Fermoy were crowned North Cork junior A football champions, overcoming the challenge of Milford 3-13 to 2-10. With the selectors keeping faith with the same starting 15 as the drawn encounter, Fermoy led 1-7 to 1-3 at the interval. Goal scorers were Brendan O’Callaghan and Denis Twomey (x2). Team captain was Adrian O’Farrell, with Denis Twomey man of the match.

A single point victory for Mitchelstown U16 A footballers over Mallow in the 1997 North Cork league final, on a scoreline of 2-5 to 1-7. Captain was Tony Carey.