How Creggs’ facilities wooed rugby visitors

Our man Frank on a starring role for Creggs’ facilities…luxury cars in stormy waters…and more on The Rhythm Stars…

It’s fair to say that the Editor of this, the most popular paper in County Roscommon, thinks I write too much about my native village – which, in case you don’t know, is Creggs. Seeing that he’s the boss, he is of course right, but sometimes events occur that simply have to be made known to the general public.

  Last weekend, Creggs was yet again the centre of the rugby universe. This time however, it was not just in Connacht, but on a national scale.

  On Saturday morning, after the country had been battered by Storm Eunice, two hardy souls (myself and my brother Kieran) went out for a stroll round the rugby club grounds. While we were out, word began to filter through that the All Ireland League match between Buccaneers and Cork’s Dolphin could possibly be taking place on our 4G pitch, as the Buccs’ ground might be unplayable. Sure enough, shortly afterwards it was confirmed that our little village would be hosting the game, with a kick-off time of 2.30 pm.

  By then, we also knew that the All Ireland Ladies Conference semi-final between Galwegians and another Cork team, Ballincollig, was taking place in Creggs at 5 pm, because the Galwegians pitch was similarly unplayable. So, on a Saturday in February, our small rural rugby club had probably the only playable pitch in the province.

  As it happened, both Cork teams suffered big defeats, with the Buccs scoring sixty points against Dolphin, while Ballincollig went down by more than forty points. Nevertheless, both of the teams, plus their mentors and supporters, couldn’t get over the facilities that a junior club in such a rural setting has.

  On one of the most miserable days of the year, it must have been a long journey back to Cork, but one and all were extremely impressed at what Creggs had to offer. Sometimes I have to pinch myself to realise that, despite being located on the road to nowhere (as no main road passes through), we actually have facilities that are the envy of every club in the province.

  Fast-forward to Sunday morning and we were looking forward to our big league final, which was to take place in the Sportsground at 3.15 pm, but the weather put paid to that game as well.

  However, out here in the sticks, we hosted three games, all of which took place without any fuss. How the pitch got here I’m not exactly sure – as it was a huge financial commitment – but it’s here now and has proved to be the most forward-thinking and positive development that ever came this way.

  1974 saw an acorn being sown, which has now undoubtedly grown into a very big tree. Long may it last. I wonder if the many people who played big parts down through the years – and who have passed on since our formation – could see us now, what would they think?

Awaiting the fate of luxury cars (and my Passat)

As we struggle with horrible weather and flooded roads all over the country, and as some of us with slightly older cars (more than slightly) look enviously at the lovely new cars gracing our roads, spare a thought for the owners of the 4,000 luxury cars that are on a ship that’s on fire (as I write) in the Atlantic, somewhere off the coast of Portugal.

  Porsches, Audis and Bentleys are amongst the thousands of cars on board the Felicity Ace ship, and there is no knowing when the fire will be put out. According to sources, at the time of writing, it could be quite a while yet.

  How many of the cars are destroyed or damaged is not yet known, but it’s safe to say that whoever has them insured must be pretty worried. 4000 of those span-new luxury cars would be worth three or four hundred million euro in total, so surely there’s some insurance executive somewhere who’s praying that the fire may not have got into the stock room.

  As for my 2008 Passat, by the time you read this it will have undergone its NCT test. Like the insurance executive, I too face a couple of nervous days until I find out my fate! Being a car owner – whether it is a Porsche, an Audi, a Bentley or a 08 Passat – is a trying experience, and not good for a person’s nerves.

  I’ll let you know next week whether or not we passed the test. Fingers, toes, legs and everything else crossed for a successful conclusion!

More on The Rhythm Stars…

You may recall that last week I went down memory lane and talked about the seven Treacy brothers and one sister, who at one time or another, played with The Rhythm Stars Showband. Well, I got a phone call from a regular reader (the other one) of my column to give me an extra piece of family information.

  He told me that in another part of the paper there was an article about the band Odd Sox, a band I’ve often mentioned in this column down through the years. He said that one of the members of that band, Ronan Mockler, is actually a grandson of The Rhythm Stars’ Lynn Treacy. He thought it was ironic that I would write about the showband on the same week that Odd Sox also featured, and, as the reader commented, it just shows the apple didn’t fall far from the tree.

  Whether or not I ever get to dance to the Stars again is open to question, but prior to Covid, the Sox were regular visitors (musically speaking) to some of our local pubs. I have no doubt our paths will cross again before too long. I have to say I always enjoy their performances, and I look forward to hearing them again.

And finally…

Over in London last week, during the end of Storm Eunice, Big Jet TV captured a number of passenger planes landing at Heathrow Airport.

  If anyone has a fear of flying, don’t have a look –  however it is an extraordinary piece of television. Some of the landings were what can only be described as hair-raising. Thankfully all made it safely to the ground, but I would imagine the prayers were in big demand!