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Paul Healy

Paul Healy

Cinderella takes the stage in Longford




When you think of Christmas you think of family, festive fun, Santa Claus and of course the Panto!

  It’s been a Christmas tradition in Ireland for years to make an annual trip to a Dublin Panto in The Olympia, Gaiety, Tivoli, Helix and other venues. But this year you can add Longford to your Panto options as Cinderella takes to the stage in St. Mel’s College ‪from December 23rd to January 5th.‬ Starring X Factor’s Mary Byrne as The Fairy Godmother, this promises to be a spectacularly fun Panto for all the family!

  Cinderella is produced by Stray Cat Productions, which includes Paul Hennessy and Tracey Carty from Evolution Stage School. Gerry McCann brings his 14 years’ experience as stage manager of The Tivoli (Cheerios) Panto to the table with Pat McElwain directing. The script is written by the very talented Los Angeles based, Leixlip native Karl Harpur. He also writes for The Helix and UCH Limerick Pantos. Tracey will be choreographer with Paul taking on the musical director roll.

  St. Mel’s will be transformed with state-of-the-art staging, lighting, and sound. It’s a traditional style Panto based on the Cinderella plot that everyone is familiar with. It’s hilarious and will having you laughing loudly!

  Lots of local talent will be on display playing lead roles including: Longford’s Leia Victory as Cinderella, Davy Flaherty as an Ugly Sister, Valerie Nolan as The Evil Stepmother, Iarlaith O’Rourke as Dandini and Conor McLoughlin  as Herald. Another local girl, Aishling Farrell, will also play Cinderella for a number of performances.

  Other leading roles will be played by the extremely talented Damien Douglas as Buttons, Colin Flynn as an Ugly Sister and Cathal Mongey as The Prince. They will be joined by a 50-strong chorus and dance troupe made up of kids and adults from Evolution Stage School Roscommon, Longford and Carrick-on-Shannon.

  The Panto will also have a knock-on effect for the local economy with large numbers of visitors to Longford town and surrounding areas over the Christmas holiday period. This will be great for local restaurants, shops and accommodation.

  An A4 programme will be on sale during the Panto run and some ad space is available. €100 for a full page or €60 for a half page. Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if interested.

  Longford’s Traditional Panto ‘Cinderella’ is proudly supported by Longford Tourism and The Longford Arms Hotel.

  Cinderella tickets are already selling fast with some shows almost sold out. Tickets available from www.stagestubs.com with group rates available by emailing: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Check out our Facebook and Instagram pages ‘Longford’s Traditional Panto’ for updates and remember to shop local!

Roscommon Hospital receives Irish Heart Foundation award




Roscommon University Hospital received a gold Irish Heart Foundation’s Happy Heart Healthy Eating award at the Irish Heart Foundation Active@Work Awards in the Gibson Hotel, Dublin on Tuesday, November 19th.

  RUH was presented with the award for prioritising their employees’ heart health by offering healthier eating options in the workplace.

  The Active@Work Award aims to get employees more active on a continuous basis, rather than just organising a once-off activity event, and promotes a culture of physical activity and long-term sustainable programmes.

  Presenting the awards alongside Karl Henry, health and fitness expert, broadcaster and author, Tim Collins, CEO of the Irish Heart Foundation, said: “A great way to tackle heart disease and stroke is through workplace wellbeing initiatives such as healthier food promotion, provision in the workplace and sustainable physical activity programmes.

  “The Irish Heart Foundation is delighted to recognise each of these companies for creating a culture of health and wellbeing and positively influencing people’s cardiovascular health by providing a long-term sustainable programme that demonstrates commitment to the organisation’s most important asset, its employees”.

Love Shines a Light in Ballintubber!



Community spirit will be on display once again this Christmas in Ballintubber as committee members and locals alike prepare to light the ‘Let Love Shine a Light’ tree in aid of Mayo/Roscommon Hospice this Sunday evening (December 1st) at 6 pm.

  This is the third year of the Mayo/Roscommon Hospice fundraiser in Ballintubber and the tree, which is located on the grounds of St. Bride’s Church, is the perfect way to remember a loved one at Christmas.

  ‘Let Love Shine a Light’ cards are available to purchase this Sunday and from then on until Christmas in the local post office, Kenny’s shop or from any of the committee members.

  So why not give the gift of love this Christmas and support the Mayo/Roscommon Hospice by sponsoring a light on the Tree of Light in Ballintubber? You can purchase a light for a friend, family member, or in memory of a loved one. You will receive a special card that you can send them to let them know that you’re thinking of them. The card can be used as an alternative to a Christmas card or as a memento of your thoughts at Christmas.

  The special lights can be sponsored for the living and the deceased and will shine on the tree in the church grounds at Ballintubber throughout the Christmas period. The cards are available from Joan Healy on 086-3175801 and Marie Finan on 087-9402036 and Eileen Kenny on 087-2308895. Lights can be purchased right up until Christmas Eve.

  There will be a special Mass in St. Bride’s Church on Monday, January 6th at 8 pm to remember all those named on our tree locally.  

  In the past two years the ‘Let Love Shine a Light’ committee in Ballintubber has raised a sum of €3,585 and with your support can help the Mayo/Roscommon Hospice with their new unit, plans of which were unveiled recently. Your support would be gratefully appreciated once again this Christmas.


Short Passes…







League fixtures announced!

Roscommon’s National Football and Hurling League fixtures were announced earlier this week.

  The footballers will compete in NFL Division 2 next year: Laois (H) at 2 pm on January 26th; Fermanagh (A) at 2 pm on February 2nd; Clare (H) at 2 pm on February 9th; Kildare (A) at 2.30 pm on February 23rd; Westmeath (H) at 2 pm on March 1st; Armagh (A) at 6.30 pm on March 14th; Cavan (A) at 2 pm on March 22nd.

  The hurlers will take part in NFL Division 2B: Warwickshire (H) at 1 pm on January 25th; Down (A) at 12.30 pm on February 2nd; London (H) at 1 pm on February 16th; Kildare (A) at 12.30 pm on February 23rd and Derry (H) at 2 pm on March 1st.

‘Keeper dilemma!

The Roscommon senior footballers will start 2020 with a goalkeeping dilemma as Darren O’Malley and Colm Lavin have both gone abroad and James Fetherstone is unavailable. It means that Aaron Brady of Elphin will be the number one contender while Mark Miley, an All-Ireland minor winner in 2006, could also be included in Anthony Cunningham’s plans.

No Murtaghs?

There is speculation that neither Ciaráin Murtagh nor his brother Diarmuid will be returning to training with the Roscommon senior footballers ahead of the new season. Both brothers were out of action in recent years, with Ciaráin opting out in 2019 in order to travel to the USA during the summer. Diarmuid, meanwhile, was out with a serious eye injury and only returned to action during the summer.

Tulsk’s manager search

Tulsk Lord Edwards will be on the lookout for a new manager as they prepare to play in the Hodson Bay Hotels Senior Football Championship in 2020 as Gerry Lohan, Seamie O’Neill and the selectors have stepped down from Intermediate champions after three years at the helm.

Fixtures Motion passed

It was proposed at Tuesday’s monthly County Board meeting by Kilmore delegate Tommie Kenoy that the recommendations of the GAA Fixtures Review Task Force are issued to all County Boards by the Director General for consideration by the clubs in advance of being brought before Central Council for decision.

  The purpose of the motion, Mr. Kenoy said is to force the GAA to issue the recommendation to all clubs for consideration so that they can mandate their Central Council delegates. It was unanimously passed.

Finneran stays on

Michael Finneran will be in charge of the Roscommon Ladies senior football team again in 2020. It will be the St. Dominic’s man’s fourth year in the job and the appointment will be widely welcomed.

  Roscommon Ladies open their Lidl National Football League Division Three campaign with a home game against Sligo on January 26th before hosting Laois on February 2nd. They then travel to Fermanagh on February 9th, and Down on February 23rd before hosting Kildare on March 1st. They will finish with two away fixtures, against Wicklow on March 22nd and Longford on March 29th. 

Camogie presentation night

Roscommon Camogie will host an evening of celebration this Sunday (December 1st) as the successful U-16 team will be presented with their All-Ireland medals at a function in the Hodson Bay Hotel.

  This is the first Roscommon U-16 team to win an All-Ireland title and the team have already been recognised by Roscommon County Council, where they are invited to attend the civic reception in December.

  The U-14 county development squad will also receive their All-Ireland runners-up medals on the night.

  Galway All Star Niamh Kilkenny will be the guest of honour. Niamh was named as Player of the Match in this year’s final as Galway won the All-Ireland title. She also won the Camogie Player of the Year for 2019.






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