Six organisations and sports clubs have been honoured by Nenagh Town Council ahead of its abolition following the local elections on May 23.
The groups honoured were: Nenagh Ormond RFC, Nenagh Players, Nenagh Riverdale Pitch and Putt ladies team, film maker Tom Ryan, Nenagh Olympic Athletics Club, and Britton Ferry Rugby Club from Wales.
Town manager Marcus O’Connor said that while these were the last civic receptions Nenagh Town Council would host, it was important under the new structures to keep them and recognise groups in the town.
He also said it was important that the new municipal district council maintained the current sports and arts grants scheme.
Proposing the reception for Nenagh Ormond, Cllr Tommy Moylan, former president, said the honour was a reflection on the club’s achievements in 2013/14, winning the AIL DIV 2B title undefeated.
Club president David Kennedy said it had been a fantstic year for the club, not just at senior level but also for the ladies team and the underage section.
The Nenagh Players were proposed by Cllr Virginia O’Dowd for entertaining the people of Nenagh for the past 70 years.
“They have made us laugh, they have made us cry and they have made us think – all the ingredients of what good drama is about,” she said.
Cllr O’Dowd pointed out that though the council was honouring the Players as a group, “I would like us to remember some of the great actors who are no longer with us – John de Loughrey, Olive Harris, John Riggs Miller, Dick Tobin, Patsy Barrett and Stephen Toohey”.
As well as entertaining the people of Nenagh, she said the Players helped develop the talent of people such as Andrew Flynn, Karl Kennedy, Elaine Fox, Carolyn, Niamh and Ailish Bracken, and have also included as members Dan Costello and Daryl McCormack, who have all gone on to acheve things in the stage and film world.
Cllr O’Dowd also praised the people who stay in the background, but without whom no show could go on – the people who do lights, front of house, make-up, costumes, sound, stage building.
Accepting the honour, Mike McMahon, chair, thanked the council for its support over the years.
Cllr O’Dowd also proposed film maker Tom Ryan, whose first feature length movie, Trampoline, has won many awards, including in the US. The film was shot around Nenagh and she said there was a huge overlap between the film and the Nenagh Players who supplied many of its cast.
Mr Ryan paid tribute to his friends and family for their help with the movie and revealed it was now showing in London.
Introducing Nenagh Olympic Athletics Club, Cllr Conor Delaney, who revealed he represented Ireland at cross-country while at college, said the club had put the town on the athletics map over the years and was looking forward to its latest development at Ballygraigue where it is working with Arrabawn Co-op to alleviate parking difficulties in the area.
Michael Moylan, NOAC, said the club had been in existace for 60 years and last year had five representatives on various Irish teams.
Cllr Delaney also introduced Riverdale Pitch and Putt Club, whose ladies team won the All-Ireland Inter-Club crown last year.
Sean Minogue acccepted the award and paid tribute to the winning team of Catherine Dunne, Margaret Courteney, Margaret Cleere and Megan Courteney.
Britton Ferry were honoured for their 55-year association with Nenagh, travelling over from Wales every second year to visit and to play against Nenagh Ormond. The award was proposed by Cllr Lalor McGee.