As this year comes to an end we are delighted to send you our very best wishes for Christmas and the New Year.

The year 2013 was a busy year as always for us here in the Carlow Association London (CCAL). Some of the highlights were London St Patrick’s Parade, Emigrants dance in Leighlin Bridge, Crawley Irish Festival, London Irish Vintage Rally, and the Run for your County fun run. All events and many more met the remit of why the CCAL was set up some 45+ years ago and that was to organise social events that appeal to all. Yes we met our objectives and can say without any fear of contradiction a good time was had by all.

45th Annual Dinner Dance

The looked forward to event last October proved itself as a very successful evening as we marked our 45th Milestone. We would like to thank all for making it a success, those who gave raffle prizes and those who helped with the organisational tasks on the run up to it. Delegates visiting from Carlow included Cllr Des Hurley, Cathaoirleach Carlow County Council together with Cllr Eileen Brophy, Cathaoirleach of Carlow Town Council as well as councillors from both councils. Our guest for the evening was the newly appointed Irish Ambassador to the United Kingdom Mr Daniel Mulhall and his Australian wife Greta. Dan as her likes to be called hails from Waterford delivered a great after-dinner speech setting out his goals for his duration here in the UK and pinpointed some notable people from Carlow who have made a name for themselves across the world. But the biggest cheer was reserved at the end for the ‘Tullow Tank’ himself Sean O’Brien. And to add that extra bit of glamour the London Rose of Tralee, Grace Kenny also attended.

2013 Rose of Tralee Festival

Carlow was more than represented at this year’s event. Crawley native Grace Kenny who’s dad Martin was from Tullow became the London Rose way back in April and took on her role with great confidence during the summer. In front of a packed audience the politics graduate spoke with great pride of her Carlow heritage as one of the final 32 in The Dome in Tralee when screened on RTE live with Daithi O’Sé. Grace was sponsored by Crawley’s Celtic and Irish Cultural Society in the competition and is looking forward to a great year in representing London’s Irish community. Special thanks has to go to former member of the CCAL Harry Hynes now based in Tralee for acting as perfect host to Grace’s supporters.

Carlow Gathering Event

As a backdrop to the Eigse Arts Festival and following an invitation from Cllr Eileen Brophy, Cathaoirleach of Carlow Town Council we were represented at the Carlow Gathering Event. Also in attendance were the twinned communities of Dole, Banbridge and Northwich and also Carlow Association Birmingham.  The weekend highlighted the closeness of the communities and how the council at home maintained that link for the benefit of all emigrant communities. .

Linking up with Carlow Museum

Early in the coming year we’ll be linking up on a project with Carlow County Museum on Carlow Trivia. We are in communication with Dermot Mulligan the Museum’s curator who’ll set a question on stuff to do with Carlow its history, culture and heritage. It’ll be posted on the website and the social networking forums and will give all a chance to test your knowledge and get more involved in who we really are. There is also a Museum blog being put together from January the plan is to update it every fortnight with ‘guest writers’ such as the CCAL and others where we would be invited to pen articles on our experiences in London and how we have made that contribution to life here in the UK.  The blog would be no more than 1,500 words per posting with approx 4 photos. The blog is set up so it can be easily shared through social media outlets.  So there is something to think about over the Christmas break!

Social Networking

Did you know we are now on Facebook and Twitter. Yes as well as via our website we can be contacted also on our FB page Carlow Association London and Twitter CarlowinLondon.

Mount Leinster Rangers are Leinster Champions

This newsletter wouldn’t be complete without honouring Mount Leinster Rangers our history makers from the 3 villages of Ballymurphy Rahanna and Borris.  Its the first time ever a Carlow Senior hurling club has achieved this and South Carlow is buzzing since. I don’t think any of us will forget where we were when we heard Brendan Hennessy’s excellent broadcast on KCLR that Sunday when the lads beat Oulart the Ballagh, the Wexford Champs in the final in Nowlan Pk. Since then the news of their victory has gone across the world and it would be safe to say we’ll be inviting a few of the players and the cup over to our 2014 Dinner.

As they approach their next game, the semi-final on the second weekend of February they are fundraising with a 5K and 10K ‘Run with the Leinster Champions’ fun run in Borris on the 28th December at 12 noon. A great way to use up the stored calories from the Christmas festivities.  All the senior hurlers will take part and if you are around the area you can help also by running, walking or crawling or by just making a donation.

Making Contact

If you have just settled here in London or have a family member or friend that has why don’t you get them to make contact.
Sending Christmas greetings home via KCLR

We have teamed up with KCLR and the Sue Nunn show so you can send Christmas greetings back home. No matter where you happen to be why don’t you private message via the Sue Nunn facebook page, you can email them on or call them on 00353-56-7796272 quoting ‘Christmas Wishes from Carlow Association’ at all times. Your messages will be read out on the regular Sue Nunn shows on Monday 23rd and Tuesday 24th December.

Not forgetting Brendan Hennessy on Hennessy’s Weekend on Saturday next between 10 and 12. Brendan’s a true Carlovian with red yellow and green blood running through his veins and has always given the CCAL a shout out whether he be commentating on Hurling, Football or Rugby or broadcasting from his studio. You can make contact with him via the KCLR website or his facebook page.

That’s about it for the moment

Here’s wishing you all a happy and peaceful Christmas and may all your wishes be granted in the year ahead.

Looking forward to seeing and hearing from you real soon.

Kind regards

County Carlow Association of London

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