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5 days ago

YoughalOnline.com

St. Mary’s Brass and Reed Band – By Mike Hackett


It was late in 1969 that a few musicians in Youghal decided to start a brass and reed band to fittingly represent a town that had a great band history. After all -a garrison town like Youghal had many kinds of band over the years with brass, pipe, and fife and drum. You had bands of the British Army, bands of the Irish Army and others made up of volunteers from all walks of life.

That Christmas of 1969 was the first outing – playing carols on the street – for the new band under the name ‘St. Mary’s Brass and Reed’. The two churches in town are both of that name and so it was felt suitable. The membership then increased with keen people who could not read music – much less play an instrument.

A lot of teaching and learning had to be done. One man of the committee stands out above the others for his interest and enthusiasm. Andrew Cronin – while not a playing member – was Director – encouraging learners to ‘stay with it’ – and to keep practising. The majority attained the ability to read music and master their chosen instrument. Andrew was the same man as featured a few weeks ago in the story of ‘The Amingo Acrobats’. He certainly was a remarkable man and achieved so much in his short life of sixty-seven years.

For the first few years the main outings for the band were the St. Patrick’s Day parade, the Eucharistic Procession, leading out charity walks and playing in the parish church on Christmas morning. Then came sessions playing on the quayside during the weigh-in of fishing competitions

For the years 1980 to 1990 -the band was very successful and was kept busy with numerous out-of-town outings and competitions. Many trophies were won – particularly at the South of Ireland Band Championships in Clonakilty. It was also the time when the band moved away from the top floor of a leaky League of the Cross Hall to a new band-room in nearby Store Street.

It was a strong outfit then of around forty players and most were still in school or college. A few families had several members in the band – and not forgetting the women behind the scenes. They adjusted uniforms and made sure that the members appeared out in spotless condition. They also helped with fund raising like collecting on the streets during the playing of the Christmas carols. When the teenage members went on to third-level in college – a good number got their B. Mus. degree – while a few joined the Irish Army band, another joined the Garda band and yet another joined the R.T.E. orchestra.

On two occasions – the band encouraged other towns to start their own Brass and Reed classes. One time – two cornets were presented to a very new Clonakilty band in its infancy – and that was the time the now famous South of Ireland Band Championships were starting up. The Clonakilty band is going better than ever now – being taught by Adrian Hanley (son of Marie Hackett Hanley) – and he teaches bands as well in Blarney and Skibbereen.

Must not forget to mention that Liam Morrissey (dentist) of Ballycoe House, Dungarvan and his family: Mary, Mairead and the two boys often played as guests with us. Liam played an B Flat base and the others were on trumpet, cornets and French horns – quite a melodious outfit on their own – but put them in with our thirty-five or so – then you had a fine marching band.

When accepting engagements from neighbouring towns and villages – it was important to secure a party for the members after the recital – in addition to the reasonable fee to help buy new instruments and uniforms. The young members would be treated to sweets, biscuits and cakes and this was a great encouragement to attend and travel. At one stage – because you had three or four people from several families involved – somebody created a saying “Join the Band and Feed the family”.

Villages like Ardmore, Clashmore and Killeagh – plus towns like Tallow, Lismore and Midleton were well known to us – when they had celebrations and festivals. Talking about ‘Feeding the Family’ – my father used to say that the people of West Waterford were the most charitable and hospitable in the whole country – even ahead of Kerry. His family originated in Ballyphilip, Knockanore – so he may have been a bit prejudiced. Yes! The I.C.A. in Ardmore gave us a great party one Sunday – following the opening and blessing of Halla Deuglan in the village.

But it was the ‘banquet’ in Lismore on a festival Sunday that surpassed all. We were playing firstly in the front garden of Lismore Castle for the afternoon – it was a lovely sunny day with hundreds of people attending. As an added attraction – an attractive teenage daughter of Pat Pollard – and her pal – decided to do a roller-skating trip from the ‘Towers’ (about two kilometres away) down to the town and then along the avenue to the castle. The day was so warm that the girls were dressed in shorts and when they appeared on the avenue – our guys were distracted from the music sheets by the glamour and played a few wrong (bum) notes. Very Funny! Sean Browne (of Irish Army No. 1 Band) was our band-master and he just laughed at the bum notes. He was human too. Wondering how those girls are now – thirty-six years later – we wish them well. They can boast that they were so attractive as to put a whole brass band out of tune.

After that recital at Lismore Castle gardens – we were invited to the I.C.A. hall across from the church – and that was where the biggest ever spread of food and treats was ready for us. The danger was that some of the youngsters would get sick from over-eating – and we had some more playing to do. An hour later – we lined up on the street and played up the hill to the G.A.A. field. James Bulman – who was very entertaining and witty – was carrying the large tri-colour in front. The flag was a long pole and when going under some trees near the pitch – James got the flag stuck into a branch and fell back on his bum. Hard to read and play music with all that ‘craic’ happening around you.

The same James used to wear a leather belt with a holder attached in front of his tummy into which went the flag pole. On a windy day – the lot would be stuck into his stomach as he held it tightly with two hands. He was a real comedian and once announced – following a two mile parade – that the flag-pole was the best contraceptive ever invented. “Try carrying that twelve foot pole with the big tri-colour around town for an hour – and you won’t have any mind for love for three months”.

The most memorable day in the band history must be when we opened our new band-room at Store Street. That Sunday was an occasion of parades and recitals all over town as we were joined by bands from Blarney, Clonakilty, Fermoy, Midleton, Dungarvan, Cobh, Cork Butter Exchange and our old friends – the Cork Hill Pipe Band. The individual bands played at different points around town before marching to the Green Park for a massed bands gathering. Then the grand parade of nine bands – spaced about a hundred yards apart – marched up the long streets of the town to the applause of thousands of people – one of the biggest crowds ever seen in Youghal.

The following poem was composed by a witty band member – it records the marvellous sense of fun and laughter enjoyed by the membership.

Sean Browne is our leader, he gives an odd shout,
He nods and he winks and waves all about,
We drive him demented – he pretends not to care
And that’s the real reason he’s losing his hair

James Bulman, he walks with a terrible swag,
He needs it to balance that big heavy flag,
Although he wears glasses, I don’t think he can see,
One day in Lismore, he got it stuck in a tree.

There’s a man in the band who’s as strong as can be,
He’s hidden behind a big yoke you can see,
Pressure is written all over his face,
It must be Tom Donnelly playing the big base.

Billy O’Connell, he plays the big drum,
When he goes down town, he goes boom, buddy boom,
His wife and the family give a big hand,
They think that their Billy’s the best in the band.

Now in this year of 2021 – a lot of the members have moved on to play in a better band up high – where there is no out-of-step marching, no false starts and no ‘bum’ notes. Sean Browne was a real gentleman – so tolerant, understanding and discreet. If some player came in too early with a note – he would wait for the piece to finish and then say “Three cheers for the Soloist” – no name mentioned – but point taken.

And for that great Brass and Reed band in Heaven – it is said that there are still some vacancies in it.

Appreciation and thanks to Kay Cronin Donnelly and her husband Tommy for help and photos included in this article.
– Mike Hackett.

Pictures:
Billy O’Connell, Dave Walsh (a fan) and Diarmuid Donnelly

Diarmuid, Tadgh and Niamh Donnelly

Band – Donnelly Family – Tommy, Niamh, Diarmuid, Tadgh and Alan

Band marching on main street, Youghal.

Sean Browne
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St. Mary’s Brass and Reed Band - By Mike Hackett 
 

It was late in 1969 that a few musicians in Youghal decided to start a brass and reed band to fittingly represent a town that had a great band history.  After all -a garrison town like Youghal had many kinds of band over the years with brass, pipe, and fife and drum.  You had bands of the British Army, bands of the Irish Army and others made up of volunteers from all walks of life. 

That Christmas of 1969 was the first outing – playing carols on the street - for the new band under the name ‘St. Mary’s Brass and Reed’.  The two churches in town are both of that name and so it was felt suitable.  The membership then increased with keen people who could not read music - much less play an instrument.  

A lot of teaching and learning had to be done.  One man of the committee stands out above the others for his interest and enthusiasm.  Andrew Cronin – while not a playing member - was Director – encouraging learners to ‘stay with it’ – and to keep practising. The majority attained the ability to read music and master their chosen instrument.  Andrew was the same man as featured a few weeks ago in the story of ‘The Amingo Acrobats’.  He certainly was a remarkable man and achieved so much in his short life of sixty-seven years. 

For the first few years the main outings for the band were the St. Patrick’s Day parade, the Eucharistic Procession, leading out charity walks and playing in the parish church on Christmas morning.  Then came sessions playing on the quayside during the weigh-in of fishing competitions 

For the years 1980 to 1990 -the band was very successful and was kept busy with numerous out-of-town outings and competitions.  Many trophies were won - particularly at the South of Ireland Band Championships in Clonakilty.  It was also the time when the band moved away from the top floor of a leaky League of the Cross Hall to a new band-room in nearby Store Street.  

It was a strong outfit then of around forty players and most were still in school or college.  A few families had several members in the band - and not forgetting the women behind the scenes.  They adjusted uniforms and made sure that the members appeared out in spotless condition.  They also helped with fund raising like collecting on the streets during the playing of the Christmas carols.  When the teenage members went on to third-level in college - a good number got their B. Mus. degree - while a few joined the Irish Army band, another joined the Garda band and yet another joined the R.T.E. orchestra.    

On two occasions – the band encouraged other towns to start their own Brass and Reed classes.  One time – two cornets were presented to a very new Clonakilty band in its infancy – and that was the time the now famous South of Ireland Band Championships were starting up.  The Clonakilty band is going better than ever now – being taught by Adrian Hanley (son of Marie Hackett Hanley) – and he teaches bands as well in Blarney and Skibbereen. 

Must not forget to mention that Liam Morrissey (dentist) of Ballycoe House, Dungarvan and his family: Mary, Mairead and the two boys often played as guests with us. Liam played an B Flat base and the others were on trumpet, cornets and French horns  - quite a melodious outfit on their own - but put them in with our thirty-five or so - then you had a fine marching band.  

When accepting engagements from neighbouring towns and villages - it was important to secure a party for the members after the recital - in addition to the reasonable fee to help buy new instruments and uniforms.  The young members would be treated to sweets, biscuits and cakes and this was a great encouragement to attend and travel.  At one stage - because you had three or four people from several families involved - somebody created a saying “Join the Band and Feed the family”. 

Villages like Ardmore, Clashmore and Killeagh - plus towns like Tallow, Lismore and Midleton were well known to us - when they had celebrations and festivals.  Talking about ‘Feeding the Family’ - my father used to say that the people of West Waterford were the most charitable and hospitable in the whole country - even ahead of Kerry.  His family originated in Ballyphilip, Knockanore - so he may have been a bit prejudiced.  Yes!  The I.C.A. in Ardmore gave us a great party one Sunday - following the opening and blessing of Halla Deuglan in the village.  

But it was the ‘banquet’ in Lismore on a festival Sunday that surpassed all.  We were playing firstly in the front garden of Lismore Castle for the afternoon - it was a lovely sunny day with hundreds of people attending.  As an added attraction  - an attractive teenage daughter of Pat Pollard  - and her pal - decided to do a roller-skating trip from the ‘Towers’ (about two kilometres away) down to the town and then along the avenue to the castle.  The day was so warm that the girls were dressed in shorts and when they appeared on the avenue - our guys were distracted from the music sheets by the glamour and played a few wrong (bum) notes.  Very Funny!  Sean Browne (of Irish Army No. 1 Band) was our band-master and he just laughed at the bum notes.  He was human too.  Wondering how those girls are now - thirty-six years later - we wish them well.  They can boast that they were so attractive as to put a whole brass band out of tune.  

After that recital at Lismore Castle gardens - we were invited to the I.C.A. hall across from the church - and that was where the biggest ever spread of food and treats was ready for us.  The danger was that some of the youngsters would get sick from over-eating – and we had some more playing to do.  An hour later - we lined up on the street and played up the hill to the G.A.A. field.  James Bulman - who was very entertaining and witty - was carrying the large tri-colour in front.  The flag was a long pole and when going under some trees near the pitch - James got the flag stuck into a branch and fell back on his bum.  Hard to read and play music with all that ‘craic’ happening around you.  

The same James used to wear a leather belt with a holder attached in front of his tummy into which went the flag pole.  On a windy day - the lot would be stuck into his stomach as he held it tightly with two hands.  He was a real comedian and once announced - following a two mile parade - that the flag-pole was the best contraceptive ever invented.  “Try carrying that twelve foot pole with the big tri-colour around town for an hour - and you won’t have any mind for love for three months”.  

The most memorable day in the band history must be when we opened our new band-room at Store Street.  That Sunday was an occasion of parades and recitals all over town as we were joined by bands from Blarney, Clonakilty, Fermoy, Midleton, Dungarvan, Cobh, Cork Butter Exchange and our old friends - the Cork Hill Pipe Band.  The individual bands played at different points around town before marching to the Green Park for a massed bands gathering.  Then the grand parade of nine bands  - spaced about a hundred yards apart - marched up the long streets of the town to the applause of thousands of people - one of the biggest crowds ever seen in Youghal.  

The following poem was composed by a witty band member - it records the marvellous sense of fun and laughter enjoyed by the membership.  

Sean Browne is our leader, he gives an odd shout,
He nods and he winks and waves all about, 
We drive him demented - he pretends not to care
And that’s the real reason he’s losing his hair

James Bulman, he walks with a terrible swag,
He needs it to balance that big heavy flag,
Although he wears glasses, I don’t think he can see,
One day in Lismore, he got it stuck in a tree.

There’s a man in the band who’s as strong as can be,
He’s hidden behind a big yoke you can see,
Pressure is written all over his face,
It must be Tom Donnelly playing the big base.

Billy O’Connell, he plays the big drum,
When he goes down town, he goes boom, buddy boom,
His wife and the family give a big hand,
They think that their Billy’s the best in the band.

Now in this year of 2021 - a lot of the members have moved on to play in a better band up high - where there is no out-of-step marching, no false starts and no ‘bum’ notes.  Sean Browne was a real gentleman - so tolerant, understanding and discreet.  If some player came in too early with a note - he would wait for the piece to finish and then say “Three cheers for the Soloist” - no name mentioned - but point taken.  

And for that great Brass and Reed band in Heaven - it is said that there are still some vacancies in it.  

Appreciation and thanks to Kay Cronin Donnelly and her husband Tommy for help and photos included in this article.
- Mike Hackett.

Pictures:
Billy OConnell, Dave Walsh (a fan) and Diarmuid Donnelly

Diarmuid, Tadgh and Niamh Donnelly

Band - Donnelly Family - Tommy, Niamh, Diarmuid, Tadgh and Alan

Band marching on main street, Youghal.

Sean Browne

Comment on Facebook

Great piece Mike. What a fantastic band ❤️

Remember when the band would come around at Christmas and play outside houses loved it

Well done again Mike.

I loved that at Christmas time so unique

Well done 🎆☺🎶🎶👏

Paddy O Connell

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2 weeks ago

YoughalOnline.com

Wet, windy and heavy seas in Youghal, on Saturday 13th February 2021. See MoreSee Less

Comment on Facebook

Shane Greene 😂😂😂😂🙈🙈🙈🙈

2 weeks ago

YoughalOnline.com

Video of churning seas at the Lighthouse Hill, Youghal, on Friday 12th February 2021.

Media Release
February 12th 2021
Unsettled Weather Forecasted for the Weekend

Met Eireann has issued a Status Yellow Wind warning with strong southeasterly winds expected tonight averaging speeds of 50 to 60 km/h and gusts of up to 90 km/h. This warning is valid from 21.00 Friday 12th to 09:00 Saturday 13th February.

A Status Yellow Rainfall Warning is also in effect with 30mm to 40mm of rainfall forecast together with strong to gale force onshore southeast winds. This warning is valid from 00:01 to 12:00 Saturday 13th February. There is also a coastal flooding risk with storm surge levels of 0.25m expected in Bantry and 0.3m in Cork Harbour from tomorrow morning, Saturday 13th and on Sunday 14th February.

Another Status Yellow Wind Warning comes into effect on 06.00 until 18.00 on Sunday February 14th with strong to gale force southerly winds veering southwesterly.

Cork County Council Severe Weather Assessment Team (SWAT) is monitoring this situation and has attended the National Directorate for Fire and Emergency Management daily meetings throughout this week. Following on from this morning’s briefing, the Council advises property owners in low lying coastal Areas to take precautions to protect property in those areas that are prone to coastal flooding. This is due to the potential combination impact of factors such as spring tides, storm surge, high onshore winds, overtopping waves and high rainfall over the coming weekend and in particular at high tide times on Saturday and Sunday. Property owners in areas that are prone to coastal flooding should take precautions to protect their property.

The Council is also advising anyone travelling along the coast to exercise caution, due to high onshore winds and the risk of overtopping waves on roads adjacent to the coast, particularly at high tide times. Cork County Council’s SWAT team will continue to monitor the situation over the weekend and will issue updates as necessary.

Cork County Council advises road users to be aware of the danger posed by high winds. Driving conditions may be hazardous with surface flooding possible. Motorists are advised to avoid driving through flowing or standing water and to exercise caution during heavy wind and rain. Motorists are also asked to be conscious of cyclists and pedestrians.

Issues such as fallen trees, flooding and road damage should be reported to the Council’s Emergency Out of Hours number (021) 4800048.

The strong winds may give rise to localised power outages. In the event of disruption to power supply, please contact ESB Networks at 1850 372 999. Fallen or grounded wires should be avoided, and the public are advised call ESB in assisting with the identification of location of fallen wires.

In the event of disruption to water supply, please contact Irish Water at 1850 278 278.

Cork County Council will provide updates on www.corkcoco.ie and on the Council’s social media channels @Corkcoco.
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Comment on Facebook

Megan Schofield

😲😲

Powerful , Nature at work !

2 weeks ago

YoughalOnline.com

Eoin Coyne is a spoken word poet from Youghal, Ireland. Eoin has launched a new website at: www.wordscoyned.com where you can browse his latest poems, videos, audio, events, join the mailing list and follow his social media channels. #wordscoyned

Eoin is very new artist on the Irish poetry scene. He took up writing in September 2019 and began sharing his work on social media in April 2020, since then his work has gained a big online following.

In this relatively short time; Eoin has amassed a half a million views of his poetry across his social media platforms. This online success led to his piece, For The Boys on the Bank to make an appearance on RTÉ’s GAA flagship show; The Sunday Game.

Eoin’s unique style of audio-visuals accompanying his spoken word has helped him to build an early reputation as an up-and-coming talent on the poetry scene.

Visit: www.wordscoyned.com
See MoreSee Less

Eoin Coyne is a spoken word poet from Youghal, Ireland. Eoin has launched a new website at: https://www.wordscoyned.com where you can browse his latest poems, videos, audio, events, join the mailing list and follow his social media channels. #wordscoyned

Eoin is very new artist on the Irish poetry scene. He took up writing in September 2019 and began sharing his work on social media in April 2020, since then his work has gained a big online following.

In this relatively short time; Eoin has amassed a half a million views of his poetry across his social media platforms. This online success led to his piece, For The Boys on the Bank to make an appearance on RTÉ’s GAA flagship show; The Sunday Game. 

Eoin’s unique style of audio-visuals accompanying his spoken word has helped him to build an early reputation as an up-and-coming talent on the poetry scene.

Visit: https://www.wordscoyned.com

Comment on Facebook

Congratulations Eoin !

Can't congrats Eoin

Best of luck with it Eoin, looks very impressive

Congratulations Eoin.

Congrats Eoin

Congratulations Eoin.

Well done Eoin 👏👏

Words coyned. Excellently put. Great stuff Eoin

Congrats Cuz

Congrats Eoin.

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2 weeks ago

YoughalOnline.com

The ‘Nellie Fleming’ Story – Lost Without Trace. By Mike Hackett

The schooner ‘Nellie Fleming’ was Lost Without Trace coming home from Lydney in Wales in mid February 1936 – exactly eighty-five years ago. The story here is the condensed version from Michael Hackett’s book "Brave Seamen of Youghal".

[A huge thanks to Nora McGrath of Cork Hill and Fr. Ben Cotter of the S.M.A.s in Cork for remembering the time so well – and were a great help to Mike in his research – as was the late Mike O’Brien and Willie Roche.]

– Eighty-Five Years ago – in February of 1936 – a schooner from Youghal was lost without trace with five local sailors on board.
The beginning of this story tells that Flemings Merchants had lost their first ‘Nellie Fleming’ vessel when it went aground at Ardmore in 1913. Thankfully all the crew were saved from that shipwreck. Then in 1916 – Flemings purchased a replacement named ‘Emily’ that had been built at Carrigfergus in 1884. It was a wooden three masted double topsail schooner. The name of this newly-purchased vessel was changed to be called after one of Martin Fleming’s daughters ‘Nellie Fleming’. Then from 1917 to 1936 – it was kept busy in Fleming’s ownership.

The Youghal Harbour record books show that the ‘Nellie Fleming’ plied mainly to Cardiff, Newport and Lydney. There was also an odd trip to Garston and Sharpness. Cargoes are listed as coal and salt. Incidentally – 1922 brings to mind a very sad happening on the local quays. A vessel named ‘Isabella’ – under Captain Jones – arrived with cargo in the dark of a September evening in 1922. The Irish Civil War was in full swing and there was a curfew in place – unknown to the captain and crew. The captain’s teenage son Samuel – aged 16 – and another crew member innocently went ashore during curfew and were challenged by Free State soldiers while up town. The two young men ran away – not knowing what this was about – and were shot dead. Captain Jones son is buried in the grounds of St. Marys Collegiate Church.

‘Nellie Fleming’ was skippered in the early years by Captain Joe Aherne and then – from 1933 to 1936 – Captain Mike began to skipper some of the voyages.

We move now to the record books of Youghal Bridge – where we see that the ‘Nellie’ went upriver as far as Cappoquin and onto the river Bride as well. Interesting to note that vessels unloading for Tallow – docked at Janeville – while those unloading for Lismore – docked at Bishopstown Quay. Although the berths were almost across from each other – this saved a few road miles – depending on where the cargo was bound for.

Before its last fateful voyage – the ‘Nellie Fleming; needed a cabin boy to double as a cook and two young lads applied for the job. Eddie Sullivan of Cork Hill and Eddie Norris of Windmill Lane were both hopeful of starting a a sea-faring career. Eddie Sullivan got the job and sailed away to Wales with four other crewmen – while the other Eddie stayed at home disappointed. Local people living at Cork Hill can remember seeing Eddie Sullivan walking down to the quayside with a pillow-case (sea-bag) of clothes thrown over his shoulder.

The ‘Nellie Fleming’ then sailed down Youghal Harbour – passed beyond the Lighthouse – and out into the bay. Nobody suspected that it was to be for the last time.

On the return journey – the ‘Nellie’ left Lydney laden with coal on a calm morning. However – as they sailed away down the Bristol Channel – the weather changed. A storm was brewing! A sister vessel – ‘Kathleen and May’ – was also heading for Youghal at the same time – in the same area. Unlike the ‘Nellie’ – which was sail only – the ‘Kathleen and May’ had an auxiliary engine as well. The ‘Kathleen’ decided to drop the sails and motor for refuge in the port of Angle in Milford Haven and made safety. Now the helpless ‘Nellie’ was running before wind and tide. The wind that night was fearful as it built up to record an average of seventy-five miles per hour for the whole of the next three days. It became the worst storm in living memory on the Irish Sea.

Meanwhile back in Youghal – as they experienced the storm – people feared the worst for their two vessels. Down on the quays and out at the Head of the Rock (Moll Goggin’s Corner) – crowds kept vigil – saying the Rosary for the safe return of their loved ones. The Eastern Point is the part of Monatrea that lies across the harbour from the Lighthouse and it was only when the schooners would come around that point – they knew they were home and safe. The high hills on both sides of the river provided great shelter – and any favourable puff of wind would see them sail up into port.

The Head of the Rock is beyond the Lighthouse and is the most prominent position from which to watch the horizon for the first glimpse of a mast. It is the place where the families waited and watched. Imagine those years before radio – when a ship’s whereabouts was only known to the crew – and nobody ashore could tell if they were blown off course.

Local sailors were hoping that the two vessels had remained in Lydney to weather the storm in port or at anchor. That was the best possibility. Meanwhile the vigil went on – day and night – but time was passing by without a sighting.

Nine days later – the ‘Kathleen and May’ – rounded the Eastern Point – to be greeted by a big cheer that could be heard over in County Waterford. It brought relief for some and hope for others. “Any sign of the ‘Nellie’” – the people on shore asked. “No sign” was the dreaded reply. Then when the ‘Kathleen’ tied up at the quay – the whole story was told.

Both schooners had left before the storm started and had been driven before it down the Bristol Channel. As already stated – the ‘Kathleen’ had an auxiliary engine – while the ‘Nellie’ had not. It made all the difference when the storm struck. The ill-fated ‘Nellie’ could only run before the storm and hope for the best. It was no contest! The captain and crew were very capable – but in that awful situation with an old vessel laden with coal – it was not enough.

The vigil at home continued – more days passed – still no sign. An awful realisation began to show on the population of a closely-knit fishing and sailing community.

Five local men with numerous family connections were gone. No Trace was ever found!

The five crewmen were:
Captain: Mike Duggan, of Church Lane – married – aged 60
Mate: Batty Glavin of Cork Hill – married – aged 58
Able Seaman: Dan Kenneally of Strand street – married – aged 54
Able Seaman: Declan Doyle of Pender’s Lane – single –aged 21 – on his first voyage
Cabin Boy: Eddie Sullivan of Raheen Lane, Cork Hill – single – aged 18 – also on his first voyage.
The ‘Nellie Fleming’ – without an engine – was no match for that terrible storm. Five lives taken together shocked the town so much that – even now – our elders can still feel the indescribable sadness.

What is not generally known is that Flemings supplied groceries to the families of the lost sailors for seven years afterwards – until the widows could claim the state pension (of the 1935 Act). As no bodies were found – the seven years deferment clause applied. Meanwhile a fund was set up to assist the families.
Incidentally – it was during that same storm (February 1936) that the Ballycotton lifeboat ‘Mary Stanford’ was at sea for three days as it rescued the crew of the Daunt Lightship.
Mike Hackett.

Pictures:
Jack Loughlin. Bill Kelly. Fr Ben Cotter, Frank Keane and John Young

Moss Landers at Camphire Bridge

Mike Hackett, Willie Roche, Mike O’Brien and Brendan Aherne

Captain Mike Duggan with his wife Maggie

Schooner and Crew

The Mate -Bat Glavin

The schooner Nellie Fleming
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The ‘Nellie Fleming’ Story – Lost Without Trace. By Mike Hackett

The schooner Nellie Fleming was Lost Without Trace coming home from Lydney in Wales in mid February 1936 - exactly eighty-five years ago.  The story here is the condensed version from Michael Hacketts book Brave Seamen of Youghal.

[A huge thanks to Nora McGrath of Cork Hill and Fr. Ben Cotter of the S.M.A.s in Cork for remembering the time so well - and were a great help to Mike in his research - as was the late Mike OBrien and Willie Roche.]

- Eighty-Five Years ago – in February of 1936 – a schooner from Youghal was lost without trace with five local sailors on board.
The beginning of this story tells that Flemings Merchants had lost their first ‘Nellie Fleming’ vessel when it went aground at Ardmore in 1913.  Thankfully all the crew were saved from that shipwreck.  Then in 1916 – Flemings purchased a replacement named ‘Emily’ that had been built at Carrigfergus in 1884.  It was a wooden three masted double topsail schooner.  The name of this newly-purchased vessel was changed to be called after one of Martin Fleming’s daughters ‘Nellie Fleming’. Then from 1917 to 1936 – it was kept busy in Fleming’s ownership.  

The Youghal Harbour record books show that the ‘Nellie Fleming’ plied mainly to Cardiff, Newport and Lydney. There was also an odd trip to Garston and Sharpness.  Cargoes are listed as coal and salt.  Incidentally – 1922 brings to mind a very sad happening on the local quays.  A vessel named ‘Isabella’ – under Captain Jones – arrived with cargo in the dark of a September evening in 1922.  The Irish Civil War was in full swing and there was a curfew in place – unknown to the captain and crew.  The captain’s teenage son Samuel – aged 16 – and another crew member innocently went ashore during curfew and were challenged by Free State soldiers while up town.  The two young men ran away – not knowing what this was about – and were shot dead.  Captain Jones son is buried in the grounds of St. Marys Collegiate Church. 

‘Nellie Fleming’ was skippered in the early years by Captain Joe Aherne and then  - from 1933 to 1936 – Captain Mike began to skipper some of the voyages.  

We move now to the record books of Youghal Bridge – where we see that the ‘Nellie’ went upriver as far as Cappoquin and onto the river Bride as well.  Interesting to note that vessels unloading for Tallow - docked at Janeville – while those unloading for Lismore - docked at Bishopstown Quay.  Although the berths were almost across from each other – this saved a few road miles – depending on where the cargo was bound for.  

Before its last fateful voyage – the ‘Nellie Fleming; needed a cabin boy to double as a cook and two young lads applied for the job.  Eddie Sullivan of Cork Hill and Eddie Norris of Windmill Lane were both hopeful of starting a a sea-faring career.  Eddie Sullivan got the job and sailed away to Wales with four other crewmen – while the other Eddie stayed at home disappointed.  Local people living at Cork Hill can remember seeing Eddie Sullivan walking down to the quayside with a pillow-case (sea-bag) of clothes thrown over his shoulder.  

The ‘Nellie Fleming’ then sailed down Youghal Harbour – passed beyond the Lighthouse – and out into the bay.  Nobody suspected that it was to be for the last time.  

On the return journey – the ‘Nellie’ left Lydney laden with coal on a calm morning.  However – as they sailed away down the Bristol Channel – the weather changed.  A storm was brewing!  A sister vessel – ‘Kathleen and May’ - was also heading for Youghal at the same time - in the same area.  Unlike the ‘Nellie’ – which was sail only - the ‘Kathleen and May’ had an auxiliary engine as well.  The ‘Kathleen’ decided to drop the sails and motor for refuge in the port of Angle in Milford Haven and made safety.  Now the helpless ‘Nellie’ was running before wind and tide.  The wind that night was fearful as it built up to record an average of seventy-five miles per hour for the whole of the next three days.  It became the worst storm in living memory on the Irish Sea. 

Meanwhile back in Youghal - as they experienced the storm – people feared the worst for their two vessels.  Down on the quays and out at the Head of the Rock (Moll Goggin’s Corner) – crowds kept vigil - saying the Rosary for the safe return of their loved ones.  The Eastern Point is the part of Monatrea that lies across the harbour from the Lighthouse and it was only when the schooners would come around that point - they knew they were home and safe.  The high hills on both sides of the river provided great shelter - and any favourable puff of wind would see them sail up into port.  

The Head of the Rock is beyond the Lighthouse and is the most prominent position from which to watch the horizon for the first glimpse of a mast.  It is the place where the families waited and watched.  Imagine those years before radio – when a ship’s whereabouts was only known to the crew – and nobody ashore could tell if they were blown off course.  

Local sailors were hoping that the two vessels had remained in Lydney to weather the storm in port or at anchor.  That was the best possibility.  Meanwhile the vigil went on – day and night – but time was passing by without a sighting.  

Nine days later – the ‘Kathleen and May’ – rounded the Eastern Point – to be greeted by a big cheer that could be heard over in County Waterford.  It brought relief for some and hope for others.  “Any sign of the ‘Nellie’” – the people on shore asked.  “No sign” was the dreaded reply.  Then when the ‘Kathleen’ tied up at the quay – the whole story was told.  

Both schooners had left before the storm started and had been driven before it down the Bristol Channel.  As already stated – the ‘Kathleen’ had an auxiliary engine – while the ‘Nellie’ had not.  It made all the difference when the storm struck. The ill-fated ‘Nellie’ could only run before the storm and hope for the best.  It was no contest!  The captain and crew were very capable – but in that awful situation with an old vessel laden with coal - it was not enough.  

The vigil at home continued – more days passed – still no sign.  An awful realisation began to show on the population of a closely-knit fishing and sailing community.  

Five local men with numerous family connections were gone.  No Trace was ever found! 

The five crewmen were: 
 Captain: Mike Duggan, of Church Lane – married - aged 60
Mate: Batty Glavin of Cork Hill – married – aged 58
Able Seaman: Dan Kenneally of Strand street – married – aged 54
Able Seaman: Declan Doyle of Pender’s Lane – single –aged 21 – on his first voyage
Cabin Boy: Eddie Sullivan of Raheen Lane, Cork Hill – single – aged 18 – also on his first voyage.
The ‘Nellie Fleming’ - without an engine – was no match for that terrible storm.  Five lives taken together shocked the town so much that – even now – our elders can still feel the indescribable sadness.  

What is not generally known is that Flemings supplied groceries to the families of the lost sailors for seven years afterwards – until the widows could claim the state pension (of the 1935 Act).  As no bodies were found – the seven years deferment clause applied.  Meanwhile a fund was set up to assist the families. 
Incidentally – it was during that same storm (February 1936) that the Ballycotton lifeboat ‘Mary Stanford’  was at sea for three days as it rescued the crew of the Daunt Lightship. 
Mike Hackett.

Pictures:
Jack Loughlin. Bill Kelly. Fr Ben Cotter, Frank Keane and John Young

Moss Landers at Camphire Bridge

Mike Hackett, Willie Roche, Mike OBrien and Brendan Aherne

Captain Mike Duggan with his wife Maggie

Schooner and Crew

The Mate -Bat Glavin

The schooner Nellie Fleming

Comment on Facebook

Thank you for posting that photograph of Capt. Mike Duggan and his wife .. He was my great grandfather , I’ve never seen a photograph of him .

Would anyone have the recording of pat Barry (quarry Road) narrating story of the Nellie Fleming and the dee waddin. My dad had a copy but went missing. Haven't heard it years

Thank you for sharing very interesting.

That was a little joke michael

Thank you 🎆📚👏

Albert Ruxton

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2 weeks ago

YoughalOnline.com

Municipal Seal of Youghal depicting a medieval ship. See MoreSee Less

Municipal Seal of Youghal depicting a medieval ship.

2 weeks ago

YoughalOnline.com

Early photograph of a busy South Main Street, Youghal. Most of the shop keepers and families lived over the shop premises back then which added to the hustle and bustle of main street. See MoreSee Less

Early photograph of a busy South Main Street, Youghal. Most of the shop keepers and families lived over the shop premises back then which added to the hustle and bustle of main street.

Comment on Facebook

Super photo 🎆👏

Fabulous picture

Such a lovely photograph 🥰🥰

Wonderful photo. Any idea as to the year?

Great picture, love this place

Amazing Photo. Thank You.

I wish I lived in these times 💙

Wonderful photo, thanks Rich.

David Walsh

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2 weeks ago

YoughalOnline.com

Early photograph of lower Cork Hill, Youghal, at the turn of the 20th century. See MoreSee Less

Early photograph of lower Cork Hill, Youghal, at the turn of the 20th century.

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Both those arched buildings were used to stable military horses that couldn't make it up to the barracks in snowing r frosty weather. Wall spikes can still b seen were horses were tied up under cotters arch

Oh my God , the sheer and absolute poverty of it all.. No matter how you look at it, life did not contain many joys for those poor people..

I have that picture framed in my home love it

One archway left and the small houses are entrance to Cherryvale/graveyard now

Kylie O'Donoghue

Amy Watson Murphy

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2 weeks ago

YoughalOnline.com

ALISTAIR BROWNLEE, THE two-time Olympic gold medallist, at the start of the 2019 Ironman Ireland – Cork bike race. The British triathlete stormed to glory in Youghal, County Cork, on Sunday 23rd June 2019.

Horrendous weather conditions had earlier forced race organisers to cancel the swim leg of the event, but the wind and rain didn’t stop thousands of people lining the route in east Cork.

On debut, Brownlee completed the 180-kilometre cycle in a time of 4:54:46 and then a superb marathon time of 2:51:31 in difficult conditions saw him power to victory just under two minutes ahead of Ireland’s Bryan McCrystal, who finished in 7:51:19.

In the women’s race, Emma Bilham of Switzerland won in a time of 8:50:18.
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3 weeks ago

YoughalOnline.com

Ironman Youghal 2019 – Behind the scenes as the cyclists line up for the start of the bike race at Claycastle beach, Youghal, on Sunday 23rd June 2019.
Over half the entrants were from Ireland with the balance coming from 62 different countries, particularly the USA, every one vying for a finishing place in the largest ever field for any triathlon in Ireland… and bringing a welcome boost of €8m to the local economy. The town had never seen the likes before.
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3 weeks ago

YoughalOnline.com

The countdown was set 5-4-3-2-1 for the historic start of the Ironman Marathon race which began at Claycastle beach in Youghal on Sunday June 23rd 2019. These cyclists were the first to leave the starting line in not very good weather conditions.

Over half the entrants were from Ireland with the balance coming from 62 different countries, particularly the USA, every one vying for a finishing place in the largest ever field for any triathlon in Ireland… and bringing a welcome boost of €8m to the local economy. The town had never seen the likes before.
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Richard Swayne remember Alex and how thrilled he was watching down town. And getting soaked and walking to perks after 😂great day 🥰

Sean Jp Coleman

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