Clonmel woman Mary Ann Maxwell (nee Leo) celebrated her 100 birthday on 2nd April at the Cottage Nursing Home, Clonmel, surrounded by family and friends who had travelled from far and near to be with her on her very special day. According to Mary, one of her secrets to a long and healthy life - she retired at the ‘young’ age of 84.
A Carrick-on-Suir couple who had made history three years previously when they underwent the first-ever spouse to spouse organ transplant in Ireland, were appealing during Organ Donor Week for Tipperary people to carry donor cards. Ned and Deirdre Crowe from Oaklands in the town, were raising public awareness to the potentially life-saving decision of carrying a card. Both Ned and Deirdre and indeed the whole family were enjoying a much improved lifestyle since Deirdre made the decision to donate.
History was made in Fethard in April when the local rugby club, for the very first time, fielded a ladies team. The girls under 15 team took on a Thurles/Carrigaline combination and for the record emerged victorious.
The sentencing in Exeter, England, of a 72 year-old Englishman, to three years and nine months in prison made front page headlines. David Tarran, who had operated a grinds school in Clonmel for many years, was sentenced for abusing a 15 year-old boy on a school trip in 1992, while living in England. Tarran had evaded justice and came to live undetected for many years in Clonmel before British police eventually caught up with him. He was extradited back to England in January, with no one in Clonmel being any the wiser for the sudden closure of his successful grinds school.
Clogheen had reasons to be cheerful when ‘Ballabriggs’ romped home in the world famous Aintree Grand National on the first Saturday in April. The winner was born at Jim and Di Lonergan’s Little Stud in New Inn and spent his first nine months with the late Sarah Jackson in Coolville, Clogheen, before being sold as a foal at Goffs. Tom Spens, who handled the horse along with Orla Fleming and Michael “College” Sweeney described him as “an absolute dote of a foal to groom and walk.”
Loreto Secondary School Clonmel created their own piece of history when the school’s Gaelic Football team won their first ever All-Ireland final. In the ‘C’ division final played in Athlone they emerged winners over St. Louis of Carrickmacross.
Rugby legend Alan Quinlan of Tipperary Town announced his retirement from the game in April. The 36 year-old Clanwilliam, Munster and 27 times capped Irish international admitted to mixed feelings at bowing out but did so with many fond memories and great joy.
Skoda Ireland were unveiled as the new sponsors of Tipperary GAA. The three-year deal would see them invest approximately E200,000 per year in promoting Gaelic Games in Tipperary.
Colaiste Dun Iascaigh were crowned All-Ireland junior ladies football champions following a hard-fought win over Leinster champions Scoil Mhuire from Trim, at Banagher. The Cahir girls, led by captain Siobhan Heffernan won on a scoreline of 5-4 to 2-5.
Three women were dramatically rescued by courageous gardai from a house fire in Albert Street, Clonmel. Three Polish women were asleep in an upstairs room at the time and were rescued when Gda Fergal Coffey, Gda Robert McCarthy and Sgt Donal Keogh kicked in the front door.
Seamus Campbell, chairman of Carrick-on-Suir Business Association, claimed that the Carrick-on-Suir Town Council’s decision not to invite Queen Elizabeth to the town during her state visit as a “real own goal” and most people in the town thought the decision was “very silly.”
Carrickbeg Society of St. Vincent de Paul celebrated its 40th anniversary last April with a Mass in the parish church. The Mass was celebrated by Fr. Michael Farrell who played a major role in setting up the Conference when a curate there in the 1960s and 1970s.
One of the sporting highlights of the year arrived in April when Cashel RFC won the coveted Munster Junior Cup for the very first time with a 23-20 win over famed Cork Constitution at Musgrave Park in Cork. In what was described as the greatest day in the 92 year history of the club the Cashel boys finally got their hands on “the biggest cup of them all.”