The Boyle’d Pot 07/04/23
Making Boyle great again
In recent weeks, there has been an air of realisation around Boyle that we need to have the town looking right before investment roles in. This was born out by the 38 people who attended a Saturday morning Tidy Town meeting a few weeks back. Maybe it’s the fact that we are near reaching ‘rock bottom’ here in Boyle in relation to derelict buildings and general disrepair and neglect of our town, that has resulted in people sitting up and taking matters into their own hands. We now have a group of local volunteers eagerly awaiting the town tidy up rota to be finalised, when they will roll up their sleeves and start to get the Boyle looking well again. Some have commenced already as could be seen earlier this week when Feelystone power washed the seating area at the Shambles and planting started on the Crescent. Further power washing is also planned around town before the summer season.
The Royal is beginning to take shape with the new river walk looking brilliant at night when lit up. (Hopefully there will be some form of exterior lighting on the front of the Royal when the hoarding is finally removed). Work will commence in the next few weeks on the upgrade of the rear of Main Street and the laneway down by the Library and there are other projects being worked on behind the scenes that will see a vast improvement in the town by mid summer.
When we have the town looking right, we need the commercial investment to follow and shops and businesses to open up in Boyle town centre. To allow this to happen, some property owners need to wake up and meaningfully put their properties on the market if they are not going to do anything with them themselves. Sitting on properties for the benefit of the next generation is holding the town back.
Dawn Mass at Galilee
Dawn Mass will once again be celebrated at Galilee just outside Boyle on the N4 to Sligo, on Easter Sunday at 6.30am. With a fine morning promised, the Dawn mass should be a beautiful way to greet Easter Sunday. Everyone is welcome to join Fr. Larry and Deacon Damien at the Mass.
Abbeytown road resurfacing – at last!
At long last, resurfacing work is nearing completion on Abbeytown Road. This piece of work was long overdue with various reasons being provided as to why it has taken so long. All that matters now is that the work is done and a beautiful new surface is in place which will be welcomed with open arms by the residents of Abbeytown, Forest View and the Warren along with all the parents who drop boys to St. Joseph’s BNS on a daily basis. Of course the one or two individuals who use this road as a speed track will no doubt go even faster now that the road has been surfaced. A speed bump, or better still, a speed check may stop this person(s) from continually breaking the speed limit on Abbeytown Road.
Some have asked if the Shilling Hill will get an overlay considering it’s deplorable state but as that road is the N61- a national secondary road – it does not fall under the same scheme as the L1032 or Abbeytown Road and is in fact under the remit of Transport Infrastructure Ireland. That being said, it is understood efforts are well underway to have this section of the road seen to as a matter of urgency.
A tourist spot close to Boyle that needs more marketing locally
A tourist spot close to Boyle that should receive more marketing locally is the Caves of Keash. The Caves, which are only a few kilometers from Boyle, consist of sixteen chambers, some interconnecting. The caves have been used by man over several millennia, and it has long been suggested that they were the site of ancient religious practice or gathering such as Lughnasadh. Excavations carried out in the early 20th century, particularly those by Robert Francis Scharff, discovered significant animal remains. Among others, these included bones of brown bear, arctic lemming, Irish elk and grey wolf.
Currently Keash Hill where the caves are located is closed for the next few weeks while sheep are lambing. Signage has been erected at the hill and the gates will be locked. It is understood upgrade works will take place to the existing path during this period of closure.
Memories of Easter in Boyle
Two Boyle memories from the past that come to mind around Easter time are hot cross buns from Doherty’s Bakery and the Circuit of Ireland Car Rally. Doherty’s Bakery was located roughly where Pure Flowers and the entrance to O’Dowd Solicitors now stands. On Good Friday in the seventies and early eighties, it was common to see a queue of people waiting on the bridge on Good Friday morning for the buns to arrive from Carrick (and in the process check if there was any pub open!). That was long before supermarkets stocked the buns, in fact the only supermarkets at that time were Fred Perry’s and Gerry Dodd’s on Main Street and hot cross buns did not feature on their shelves. On Good Friday night, when nothing seemed to happen, a trip to Arigna to see the Circuit of Ireland Rally was usually on the cards. One year the Rally had a night visit to Rockingham which provided a great local attraction closer to home. Now that pubs are open and Good Friday is seen as the same as any other day, the memories of Easters past are fading away.
Pike Angling Festival is an economic boost to the town
The annual Pike Angling Festival takes place on Lough Key this weekend and is sure to attract the usual high entry. While lake fishing may not be a great spectator sport, the Boyle Festival, with it’s base at the recently upgraded Doon Shore, provides an ideal opportunity for members of the public to see weigh-ins as they happen and enjoy the sport of angling without getting their feet wet. In addition, the spectacle on Saturday morning of the flotilla of boats heading out on Lough Key is a sight to behold. Boyle and District Angling Club are to be congratulated on the organisation of the Festival, an event that brings an economic boost to the town, with filling stations, shops, bars and restaurants all benefiting over the two days.
Afternoon Tea on Monday in Tawnytaskin
Another event of note in Boyle this weekend, is the annual Easter Afternoon tea party in Tawnytaskin Community Centre. This year’s tea party will take place on Easter Monday 10th April from 12pm to 5.30pm. All are welcome and there will be a raffle on the afternoon. Entry is €10 per person with loads of homemade baking on offer.
US Air Force overfly Lough Gara
If you live in Cloonloo/Mahanagh area you probably wondered what was the loud noise you heard last Wednesday morning around 9am. If you looked skyward you would have seen a massive US Air Force C17 Globemaster swing over Lough Gara on it’s final approach to Ireland West Airport Knock. This aircraft was one of four C17’s that landed in Knock on Wednesday (with two more on Thursday) carrying advance equipment and vehicles for President Biden’s visit next week. They left Andrews Airforce base overnight for Knock and headed to Ramstein Air Base in Germany after they unloaded their cargo.
The journey on horseback from Dallas to Forth Wort is a long ride along a dusty trail and for any cowboy, it’s thirsty work.
So when George passed through a small town along the way he decided to stop at the saloon for a cold beer to quench his thirst.
Well, the locals were none too friendly to strangers passing through their town and George could sense a negative vibe immediately, as he tied up his horse to the post before walking through the saloon doors.
When he’d finished his beer, George walked outside and he was non-too-happy to discover that someone had stolen his horse.
So he walked back into the bar, drew his gun from its holster, spun it around his finger in impressive fashion, and then shot a bullet straight through a whisky bottle standing at the other end of the long bar.
The place went silent and you could hear a pin drop, until George shouted, “Now which one of you sidewinders stole my horse?”
No one said anything. The place was deadly quiet.
George shouted menacingly, “Now you listen to me! I’m gonna sit here and have another beer and if my horse ain’t back outside by the time I’ve finished my drink then I’m gonna do what I dun in Dallas. And I don’t want to have to do what I dun in Dallas.”
The locals shifted nervously in their seats. They didn’t like strangers much but they liked trouble even less.
So when George had finished his beer, he looked outside and sure enough there was his horse tied to the post and waiting for him.
George saddled up and then started to ride slowly along Main Street.
The bartender had wandered outside and stood and watched George go.
“Hey partner,” said the bartender, “so what happened in Dallas?”
George smiled and said, “I had to walk home!”