Thursday, February 22, 2018

Concert tomorrow for Dunshane literacy project

A reminder that a concert to raise funds for a 'Literacy and Learning Room' at Camphill Dunshane will take place in the Moat Hall, Naas, tomorrow 23 February, writes Brian Byrne.

It will be headlined by Paddy Casey, with support from Saoirse Casey, Gar Tiernan, and the Kilcullen Gospel Choir.

The new special purpose room will be used to promote literacy skills among the residents of Dunshane, so they'll have better opportunities for employment.

It is hope to give them access to educational materials in the room, and help them to engage with new communications tools such as Skype.

Dunshane was founded in 1985 and is located near Carnalway. There are currently 26 residents, as well as five adults with disabilities who access day services at the community.

"Camphill Dunshane works off the idea that every individual, no matter their disability, have a valued role to play in community life," a spokesperson for the facility says. "Currently in Dunshane we offer a number of workshops that adults living here can avail of, including Pottery, Basketry, Cooking, Gardening, Farming, Candle Making and Craft Skills. In recent years Dunshane has expanded our 'Community Inclusion'."

This last involves facilitating people with special needs to access the wider community in Naas, Kilcullen and Newbridge to do ordinary everyday things such as education courses, building relationships with community members, participating and becoming part of the wider community.

Ticket information for the concert is available at or Camphill Community Dunshane on 045 483628.

For donations or spot prizes please contact: Camphill Community Dunshane on 045 483 628 or Keith Hayes on 085 7191303.

Castlemartin Lodge AGM date

Photo: Google.
The Castlelemartin Lodge Residents Association AGM will take place on Tuesday 10 April.

The location is O'Connells Bar and it will start at 8pm.

All members of the Association are urged to attend.

Keeping your teeth right, with PRSI

If you are self-employed or employed, recent changes to the PRSI scheme allow a free exam and contribute to a cleaning, writes Deirdre White of Kilcullen Dental. Self-employed previously did not get any benefits. To check if you are covered, contact your practice, give them your PPS number and they will check online and let you know if you qualify.

An exam and routine cleaning is now €15 for those qualifying under PRSI. If a more extensive clean is needed, your PRSI will also cover a portion of the cost.

How do I know if I need a clean?

It may be very obvious as you will clearly see stain. Healthy gums will be pink, firm to touch and won’t bleed on brushing. Brushing your teeth should not cause them to bleed, this bleeding is caused by bacteria in the soft sticky substance plaque. Swollen gums, otherwise known as gingivitis, is the start of gum disease and often is your first indicator that you have a problem. Just like a cut on your hand, your gums will be tender and bleed easily. In this case go back to the area and carefully brush again, aiming the bristles down into the gum. The area should clear up in 3-5 days.

If your gums are not responding you may need a mouth wash. Just like TCP it will speed up the healing process. Corsodyl works well but will stain if used for more than two weeks. Perio Kin shouldn’t stain and a good home remedy is hot salty mouth wash.

If you can see hard build up and stain down at your gum line then you will not be able to remove this yourself and you need to attend the dentist or hygienist. Once it has been removed then you will be aiming to stop it reforming.

Your Dentist or Hygienist can help with any discomfort or pain anticipated by you when this build up is being removed. For mild sensitivity tooth mousse can be applied, for heavy tartar the area can be numbed with anaesthetic. Bring your earplugs to your appointment if you wish, whatever makes you more at ease in the chair.

Untreated gum disease leads to loss of the bone supporting the teeth and ultimately loss of the teeth. Many years ago it was called pyorrhoea, a term often used by grandparents.

Prevention is better than the cure. Ideally a check-up and clean visit once a year. Many patients will attend the hygienist on a 6-monthly basis and some 3-monthly as this is best to keep their mouth clean and healthy. Your dentist or hygienist will advise each person individually.

Back to Basics

1. Brush twice a day not twice a week for two minutes, firm not scrubbing;
2. Use a soft or medium toothbrush, a small plain flat head is perfect;
3. A pea size amount of adult toothpaste for everyone over the age of two;
4. Spit out the toothpaste and don’t rinse with water;
5. Use floss or interdental brushes to clean between teeth;
6. If you smoke cut down and aim to quit. Smokers need to attend more frequently as smoking makes gum disease worse.

Don’t ignore any bleeding in your mouth, it’s your body's way of telling you something is not quite right. Take charge, make your appointment.

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Zumba classes in Parish Centre

Pic courtesy Arwen Sheridan.
Zumba classes in Kilcullen Parish Centre are held on Monday and Thursday nights, at 6.30pm and 8.30pm respectively.

They are run by Kilcullen resident Arwen Sheridan, on a pay as you go basis at €8 a session.

The classes are suitable for all levels, including absolute beginners.

More information from Arwen at 087 6701647 or her Facebook page.

Lions Coffee Morning

A reminder that Kilcullen Lions Club are holding a Coffee Morning this Saturday 24 February.

The venue is Kilcullen Heritage Centre and things munch off at 10.30am, until 1pm.

It is a 'bring and buy' cakes event and there will also be a raffle. All welcome.

Second Pilates Class for Community Centre

Due to the success of the Thursday night beginners Pilates Class a second night of Pilates will be run commencing Monday 26 February upstairs in the Community Centre, from 8-9pm.

This class will be for intermediate level participants and familiarity with pilates would be essential.

The course duration is seven weeks long and members can 'bring a buddy' for a free session on week 1 to try out the class for themselves. Course price is €70 per person. Please email or contact yumandfit on Facebook.

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Parish Lotto Draw results

The numbers drawn in the Kilcullen & Gormanstown Parish Lotto Draw held on Tuesday 20 February were 2, 15, 19 and 28. There was no Jackpot winner and next week's main prize will be €15,200.

The winners of the €50 Open Draws were Josephine Kelly (Promoter John Archbold), Ted Rooney (Wednesday Bridge Club), and Eva Mullooly (Wednesday Bridge Club).

The winners of the Promoters Draw were Eithne Dempsey and Friday Bridge Club, and the winner of the Draw for those in the Parish Centre on the night was Margaret Talbot.

The Parish thanks all who support the Lotto.

New speed limits for two estates

Special 30km/h speed limits will come into effect in two Kilcullen estates from Monday 12 March, writes Brian Byrne.

They are Laurel Wood Estate and Castlemartin Estate, and the new limits follow the adoption by Kildare County Council of Road Traffic (Special Speed Limit) (County of Kildare) Bye-Laws 2018. The purpose of the Bye-Laws is to provide for special speed limits on designated sections of roads in selected Housing Estates throughout the County of Kildare, in the interests of prudent traffic management and road safety.

They relate to all roads within the estates, inclusive of any loop roads, cul-de-sac side roads and laneways within the estate (those other than private access roadways/driveways, within the curtilage of each dwelling)

These Bye-Laws together with accompanying maps are available for inspection by members of the public on the Council’s website.

Teach na nDaoine progress report

The Teach na nDaoine project has so far raised around a third of the anticipated €190,000 cost of converting the old Dispensary into a Community and Senior Citizens Centre, writes Brian Byrne.

The funds gathered so far total €65,000, including €45,000 from the National Lottery. The balance raised has come from a range of small and large events organised in the community, as well as private donations.

Among these, the recent New Year's Eve Gala raised €1,210, last year's Monster Auction netted €3,460, a Tea Party organised by Kilcullen Lions brought in €800, and a Kilcullen Drama Group Gala Night at 'The Quare Land' resulted in €1,000 for the project.

The project was initiated in 2015, and is now at the construction stage, including a large extension which will allow a range of facilities to be provided, such as activity areas, kitchen facilities, a lounge, coffee dock and dining room, and a community garden.

Planning permission was granted in late 2016, and statutory certifications from various organisations including the county Fire Service were completed last August.

In December last, the organising committee of the project produced a booklet detailing the progress so far and the plans for the facility, with a detailed breakdown of costs under 13 headings. A copy of this can be had from any member of the committee, which comprises Martin Heydon TD, Albert Keenan, Liz Maloney, Noel Clare, Steve Kinneavy, Jacinta Sully and John Brady. The booklet is also available from Kilcullen Community Library.

In response to a Letter to the Editor in the February Bridge Magazine, the Teach na nDaoine Committee have issued a statement on the organisation's structure.

It is a non-profit, voluntary, unincorporated body, with a constitution, and has tax clearance with Revenue. In November 2017 a decision was made to change the structure to a company limited by guarantee, a process which is currently under way.

"Since the beginning, we have been registered with The Wheel, the support and representative body connecting community and voluntary organisations and charities across Ireland," the statement adds. "We are also in the process of registering with the Charity Regulator."

The Committee say they will be making no further comment on the matter pending the completion of these structural changes.

Co Housing Group's 'frustration'

All state departments are being asked to look at their land holdings in the Kilcullen area to see if they have a suitable location for a co-housing initiative, writes Brian Byrne.

Two sites which the Kilcullen Co Housing Group had hoped might be available were subsequently found not to be so — a site at Mountain View in Athgarvan had adjoining land issues, and one at Avondale in Kilcullen is currently under lease to a local club.

The Group has had discussions recently with Deputy Martin Heydon and Cllr Ivan Keatley, who are both 'exhausting different avenues' and asking all state departments for possible land availability in the area.

"We are playing a waiting game at the moment in terms of identifying a site," the Group says in a Facebook update. "Kildare County Council simply do not have anything to give to us at the moment we are told, any lands they do have will be used to clear their own housing list, which is understandable. Cllr Joanne Pender is in the process of obtaining the list of all lands owned by KCC for us to have a look at."

The Group says it is a 'very frustrating situation' but will 'plough on', and has expressed appreciation for the help and support of the local representatives.

The Group has had a number of meetings already, which were well attended. In addition to assessing the level of interest in an initiative, the participants were given information from a similar and successful initiative in Dublin.

Monday, February 19, 2018

Business owners asked to help litter effort

Litter at the bus stop: wouldn't it be easier if there was a bin to put it in?
Business operators in Kilcullen are to be encouraged to keep the areas outside their premises clear of litter on a daily basis, writes Brian Byrne.

The Tidy Towns group within Kilcullen Community Action will discuss the matter with the business owners, as part of a programme to improve the town's rankings in the national Tidy Towns competition.

Meanwhile, the regular litter picking programme by Tidy Towns volunteers will be changed for 2018 to try and incorporate a recycling element.

At a recent meeting of KCA, it was decided that this year the litter patrols will each involve two people, one to collect disposable rubbish, the other bagging discarded items which can be recycled.

Sunday, February 18, 2018

Church roof repairs await funding

Repairs to the church roof in Kilcullen are awaiting decisions on funds towards the cost, writes Brian Byrne.

In the meantime, the Parish has a specialist expert coming to fully survey the roof, to ensure that whatever repairs are consistent with the ongoing state of the structure.

"Essentially, the roof has had its time," says Liam McDonnell of the Parish Finance Committee. "We won't get a full new one, but we'll see what has to be done. There's no point is doing something that has to be taken down again in a few years."

He said the Parish has applied for Protected Structure funds to help with the work, and they are also awaiting a decision from the Diocese on the work. "The Diocese is behind us on the need for proper repairs."

The church is listed as one of a number of Protected Structures under the Kildare County Development Plan 2017-2023. The Council manages an annual DCHG Structures at Risk fund for essential repairs to such structures, which can provide up to €30,000 to 80pc of the total cost.

Just four applications will be considered by the local authority for 2018, and qualifying works include those to ensure the weather tightness of a qualifying building.

A letter to Christopher

An emailed Letter to the Editor from Christopher James Corrigan for the February issue of the Bridge Magazine asked some questions regarding the Teach na nDaoine project, writes Brian Byrne.

Mr Corrigan gave his address, and in a subsequent email said that he would prefer if his details 'were not disclosed at this time'. Perfectly reasonable, as it is policy in The Bridge to publish letters which come with 'name and address with Editor' requests, while totally anonymous letters will not be published.

Mr Corrigan was articulate, to the point, and his questions were not untoward. Though research through the Kilcullen Diary over the years since the Teach na nDaoine project was initiated would provide answers to many of them. Other answers would have been available in past editions of The Bridge. And a leaflet produced by the TnD Committee in December is also a comprehensive source for the projected costs, the spending, and exact plans for the building now under construction, and its projected use.

I'm writing this piece for a number of reasons. One, as I have for the moment taken over the production management of The Bridge on behalf of the magazine's board, the Letter crossed my virtual desk and it seemed reasonable to publish it.

Two, the Letter referenced an article I wrote some weeks ago outlining some of the support which Kilcullen people have given to a range of worthy causes. So I know he will read this, as he obviously follows the Diary.

Three, because it seems indeed, that Christopher J Corrigan may not exist. The address given was somebody else's, who told me when I went to it at the weekend that he 'hadn't a clue' about at Christopher Corrigan at that house.ou know.

As I said, the questions were not untoward. But by taking someone else's local address so that it would look real, the writer collapsed their somewhat lofty position on behalf of 'The People'. A query to the email address used has at the point of writing not been answered. In fairness to the Teach na nDaoine committee referenced in the letter, this needs to be said.

NOTE: I have revised this piece because a couple of people felt I was initially being too hard on the letter writer. And that I was perhaps deflecting attention away from the questions being raised in the letter. That of course is not the case. However, it does mean that all such contributions sent to the Bridge will require some form of independent verification as to the author's existence as described. Which is a good point to note that the deadline for the March Bridge is tomorrow, 20 February.

Chess training for CG this week

Chess training for Kilcullen Community Games will start on Thursday next, subject to there being sufficient interest.

Players must be under 13 years on 31/17/18.

If interested, send a PM from the Kilcullen Community Games Facebook page.

Meanwhile, the planning date for the Kilcullen Art & Handwriting competitions is Friday 23 February. Watch the Facebook page for updates and timings.

Tenth anniversary of the 'spear'

The 10th anniversary of the installation of the Dun Ailinne Interpretive Park will be marked this year by a walk and picnic, writes Brian Byrne.

The Park, with its distinctive 'spear' sculpture by local artist Noel Scullion, was an initiative by Kilcullen Community Action, and marks the importance of the Dun Ailinne royal site a few kilometres south of the town.

It was officially opened in the summer of 2008 by the late Professor Bernard Wailes, who had led archeological excavations of the site in the late 1960s and early 1970s. The work confirmed and expanded the importance of the site as a regular place of congregation from pre-Christian times.

More recent investigations have extended knowledge of the underlying ancient gathering place, and while the site is on private land, the Interpretive Park provides a very clear timeline and explanation of the development and importance of Dun Ailinne in its time.

The spearhead monument is based on an artefact found during Professor Wailes' excavations, and Noel Scullion incorporated a number of elements which provide experiences at the Equinoxes that rival those of the ancient site at Newgrange. And you don't have to be in a lottery to enjoy them ... as long as there is a cloud-free dawn.

Since its installation, a tradition has grown that the Equinoxes are celebrated on the nearest Saturday morning with a sausages and brown bread breakfast in Ray Kelly's nearby Nicholastown home. That will happen again in March, we'll confirm the date closer to the event.

Meantime, KCA is considering how to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the official opening of the Park. In the most recent discussion, a 'walk and picnic' were suggested for starters. It should, and probably will grow beyond that.

In particular, it would seem very appropriate that we might once again hear a live rendition of the KCA-commissioned special piece of music sponsored by Dr Tony O'Reilly of Castlemartin House, 'Dun Ailinne and the Clann March' composed and played by Liam O'Flynn in a really extraordinary evening in Kilcullen Town Hall during the dedication of the sculpture in 2008.

And then we can take the celebration from there ...

Saturday, February 17, 2018

Meeting to organise 'Kilcullen 700'

The replacement bridge erected following the destruction of the first one.
A public meeting is to be held with the view of setting up a broad-based working group to organise a celebration of the 700th anniversary of Kilcullen, writes Brian Byrne.

The initiative next year would mark 700 years since the first bridge at Kilcullen was built across the Liffey, in 1319. It was constructed by a canon of Kildare Cathedral, Maurice Jakis, and formed the basis of a settlement that became Kilcullen Bridge. The new settlement eventually replaced the original monastic town of Old Kilcullen, which had been in existence since the 4th Century.

The matter was discussed at the recent fortnightly meeting of Kilcullen Community Action, where the decision to call a public meeting in the Town Hall for early March was taken. The date will be confirmed next week.

It was suggested that regular annual events in the community, such as the River Festival, could all be incorporated into a special programme for the year which would include opportunities for all social, sporting and business organisations to suitably mark the seven centuries of Kilcullen as a distinct entity.

Seven years of The Spout

Tommy Dignam was celebrating seven years of operating The Spout Bar last evening. He's pictured here with customers and staff marking the event.

Friday, February 16, 2018

CPC students for Kildare Drama Festival

Kildare Drama Festival Committee.
Pupils from Cross & Passion College will perform at the Kildare Drama Festival which opens on Wednesday 28 February, writes Brian Byrne.

They will be among five schools from the county which will present 30-minute dramas each on Saturday 3 March.

Kilworth Drama Group will give the opening performance of the 60th year of the Festival, with their production of 'The Beauty Queen of Leenane'.

The programme also includes the Ballyduff Drama Group with 'Albertine in Five Times' (Friday 2 March), Curtain Call Productions' 'Some Girls' (5th), Holycross/Ballycahill's 'Bold Girls' (6th), Kilrush Drama Group's 'The Weir' (7th), Kilmuckridge Drama Group's 'The Seafarer' (8th) and Bridview's 'Stolen Child' (9th).

The adjudicator is Lee Wilson, the founding artistic director of Resurgence Theatre Company in Newmarket, Ontario, Canada.

Currently he is developing a world premiere Irish Musical called The Sea Brothers with Ger Clancy, Joanna Crawley, and Kevin Nolan. In addition, he is developing a TV Series with Aircraft Pictures. Lee holds an MFA in Directing from The Lir, Ireland's National Academy of Dramatic Art, Trinity College Dublin.

The Festival was launched last night in the Derby House Hotel, by Noel Cunningham of TV3. Pictured above at the launch are the organising committee (back) Anne Madden; Matthew Dowling; Denis Flood, Chairman; Fr Adrian Carbury, President; Joe Connolly, Vice-President; Ger Fogarty, Margie Sheridan; and (front) Lil Byrne; Ann Fogarty; Ian Weir, Secretary; Edwina Weir, Treasurer; and Mary O’Sullivan.