Reeling in the Archives



From Seamus Duke column: Ballygar’s Dr Martin Daly matches ‘fearsome’ Browne!

On Monday night I decided to watch the new Vincent Browne news programme on TV3 and I was pleasantly surprised when I saw that there was plenty of local interest as IMO representative and Ballygar GP Martin Daly (who is also the Roscommon GAA team doctor) was the special guest on the programme.

I will give Martin Daly full credit because he was ready for Browne on the night. Browne’s fearsome reputation for his savage interviewing style has now preceded him and intelligent people like Martin Daly are well able to counteract the broadcaster.

As is his wont, Browne came out attacking on Monday night but Martin Daly was ready and answered every insult with a well-rehearsed answer. It clearly frustrated Browne as he kept sighing and repeating himself. He tried to interrupt but Martin Daly was having none of it.

It was a mighty row and great TV but at the end of it all we had learned not one single thing more about the issue being discussed – and therein lies the weakness of Vincent Browne on this programme.

He is a very talented journalist with an excellent grasp of the issues, but he is a bully-boy when on the air.

(From 1 February 2008)


Roscommon’s Johnny Donnelly to tackle 60 marathons worldwide!

A challenge taken on by Roscommon man Johnny Donnelly will see him take 10 million strides, complete 2000 miles, go through 154 pairs of runners and visit 43 countries as he attempts to complete 60 marathons back to back across the world in aid of charity.

The former member of the Saw Doctors got the challenge underway last weekend at the Seville Marathon, and will take in Europe, Africa, the USA, South America, the Middle East, Antarctica and the Far East. Johnny will run around the world over the course of the next four years to raise funds for the Sea Change Foundation, an Irish charity established to raise funds and awareness for Microcredit Projects.

Now living in Galway, Johnny has been running marathons since he was 13 and to date has competed over 30, with the six completed in 2005 alone raising over €150,000 for various charities. From February 2008 until December 2011, Johnny will make his way around the world to complete his latest challenge, running over 2000 miles in over 43 countries.

(From 29 February 2008)




Dull meeting saved by Al Capone and friends!

Fourmilehouse is famous as the location of an ambush in 1920 and about the only levity on Monday came when Sinn Féin Councillor Michael Mulligan went off on a slightly bizarre verbal solo run during which he referenced guns so much you could almost smell the gunsmoke.

Announcing that he was at the Sinn Féin Ard Fheis in Kerry at the weekend (cue, for some reason, chortles and heckles from other councillors), Cllr. Mulligan said that it was all very well for a new tourism campaign in Roscommon to have highlighted certain well-known people, but he wanted to mention the many other “infamous sons of Co. Roscommon”.

Did we know, for example, wondered Cllr. Mulligan, that “Al Capone’s mother was from Frenchpark?”

Cllr. Sean Beirne: “Lovely”.

Cllr. Mulligan, having stunned colleagues by mentioning Al Capone at a Council meeting, was now on a roll.

“Then you had ‘Machine Gun Kelly’….”

At this stage several Independents almost dived for cover.

Next, Cllr. Mulligan’s flight of verbal fancy brought him on to Dr. Douglas Hyde, first President of Ireland and a County Roscommon native. Cllr. Mulligan had some local folklore to recount about Mr. Hyde which might have had libel lawyers rubbing their hands in glee had it all been said at a different time. Mr. Hyde might even have summoned Mrs. Capone.

The metaphorical gunsmoke lingered as Mayor Eugene ‘Sheriff’ Murphy also had cowboys on his mind.

Mayor/Sheriff Murphy: “Don’t forget James Drury (of ‘The Virginian’)…”

(From 1 June 2012)

Electric Bike is hailed

There’ll be no stopping Cllr. Domnick Connolly on the canvass for the next local elections after he was won over this week by a new Electric Bike which has just become available in Roscommon town.

Political rivals could find that Cllr. Connolly sets an electrifying pace if he gets the hang of this acclaimed bike. Cllr. Connolly (Independent) recently launched the bike, which is now available at Neilan Electrical, Roscommon.

On a serious note, the Kenbay Electric Bike has been hailed for the comfort it could bring to, in particular, elderly people.

So, how does it work? Just plug it in at night at home and charge it (at a cost 7 cent) – and when it’s fully charged it’s ready to do 70km!

(From 25 May 2012)




From Paul Healy’s Week

Over the past week or so, the FAI boss John Delaney’s conduct has reminded us that cute hoorism is alive and well.

I didn’t hear his interview with Ray D’Arcy at the time, but Delaney had already been grating on me in the days after the FIFA scandal broke.

Delaney was popping up in the papers virtually every day, invariably with a righteous perspective on the FIFA story. It was becoming tedious; then the ‘€5m payment to the FAI’ story broke.

Now one can argue for or against the €5m payment, but what many people are increasingly feeling uncomfortable with when it comes to Delaney is his demeanour, how he conducts himself.

He may be a really nice man, but too often his behaviour lacks the dignity one would associate with his prestigious position.

In the interview with Ray D’Arcy, Delaney began by saying he didn’t like Sepp Blatter’s “modus operandi” and “style” and accused him of having a big ego.

One might say much the same of Delaney.

 (From 12 June 2015)