1950s in Belleek, Ballyshannon and Bundoran

 Local Events

January 1st 1950. Ceili Mor in Mc Cabe’s Hall, Belleek, Friday 6th January, 1950. Dancing 9pm –2am. Music by T. Boyd and his band. Admission 2-6.

January 1st 1950. Miss Ima Weight – World’s Fattest Girl – Quarter Ton!! Will visit Enniskillen on Friday 15th January for two days. On view from 3 to 12 daily. Admission Adults 6d, Children 3d.

January 7th 1950 Catholic Ireland joins in the Holy Year. Vast crowds attend the Midnight Masses. Scenes of wonderful fervour and devotion. Crowded congregations attended the first midnight masses known in many areas since the dawn of the century. In Armagh, Most Rev. Dr. D’Alton, Archbishop-Primate, in an address to the people referred to the danger that Catholic Schools in the Six Counties might be threatened in the near future.

Jan. 14th 1950 Irvinestown Rural District Council is to require the owner of the 8 houses in Hawthorne Terrace, Belleek to install water closets. The house rents were 2-3 and 2-6 per week and installing the closets would cost £50 each. Even if the owner increased the rents by the maximum of 8% it would take about 12 years to recoup the outlay.

Jan. 14th 1950 There has been an epidemic of bicycle stealing in Ballyshannon.

Jan. 14th 1950 Case against Garrison man fails. Thomas Allingham, Slattinagh was charged at Belleek Court along with Thomas Mc Elroy, Kiltyclogher of being concerned in removing 8 cows contrary to the Customs Act.

January 21st 1950 Miss Valerie Elliott, Pettigo who is employed in the firm of Myles and Son, Ballyshannon has suffered bereavement by the death of her brother who was one of the victims of the recent British submarine disaster in the Thames Estuary.

January 21st 1950  Since the advent of the Erne Scheme Ballyshannon has come to be regarded as a minor boom town, and no doubt this is partly true, since the increase in population and employment has provided a temporary prosperity reminiscent of the town’s golden days when it was an important Atlantic port and the natural gateway between Connaught and the North.

January 21st 1950 Mr. T. Campbell, Belleek, at the Fermanagh GAA County Convention, said that a member of the RUC had taken part in last year’s competitions and several members of the RAF. He said it was a rule of the GAA that they should not be allowed to play. It was unfortunate that a rule was necessary to prevent these people from playing. There should be enough national pride in the clubs to have no association at all with these people.

January 28th 1950 The recently organised Devenish Band has reached an advanced stage of training and to use a favourite expression, “will soon be on the air.”

Feb. 4th 1950. Cahir Healy unanimously selected at big convention to stand for election in Fermanagh South Tyrone.

Feb. 18th 1950. Area and local news – Ballyshannon and Bundoran. There is general disapproval at the suggestion of Fermanagh GAA officials that members of the British Forces should be debarred from Gaelic Games. It is doubtful if many playing members would sanction their narrow view. That members of the RUC should play Gaelic games must surely be regarded as a moral victory by all reasonable men associated with the movement. The original spirit of the GAA was synonymous with a missionary ideal, a crusade not only to foster a love of race and nationhood but also to give something original and wholesome to the world of sport. Now when it is expanding and prosperous such an attitude is childish, obsolete and retrogressive.

Feb. 18th 1950. Reflections on Voting in the old days. A priest once accosted a voter who was said to have openly voted for the landlord. “I am told you sold your vote to the landlord for two pounds. Aren’t you ashamed of yourself?” The reply was “Sure Father it was all I could get.” At one election where the electorate only numbered 300 the bill for whiskey treats alone (at 3 pence per glass) came to £547.

Feb. 18th 1950. Sean Mc Bride, Irish Minister for External Affairs is coming to Enniskillen on Thursday evening to address a public meeting in Paget Square in support of Cahir Healy. This is the first occasion on which a member of the Irish Cabinet will have taken part in a Six-County Election since Partition.

Feb. 25th 1950. Poteen drinking is made a reserved sin. The crime of Partition and its evil consequences. Lord Bishop of Clogher, Most Rev. Dr. Eugene O’Callaghan’s Lenten Pastoral.” Smuggling is one of the dire consequences arising from the mutilation of our country, and the unnatural border which has cut our diocese in twain. The moral evils are deplorable. Some people appear to live for this illegal traffic. Little heed is paid to the virtue of truth, and perjury is on the increase. Our secular judges complain of the want of truth, and the lamentable disregard for the sacredness of an oath.”

March 4th 1950 If Dublin is “the city of dreadful rumours,” Ballyshannon may fairly be described as the town of hopeful rumour. It has had during the past two years, successive rumours of the establishment of a trans-Atlantic airport in the Wardtown area, a Butlin Holiday Camp at Rossnowlagh, and an American sponsored air base for the Irish Air Force at Finner Camp. The latest persistent rumour, though less sensational, has brought warm hope to many locals, and is to the effect that one of the town’s fine cinemas is to soon cease as such and to be turned into a sort of town hall for housing large scale social functions such as concerts, dances and stage shows. It has long been felt that when the Erne Scheme is completed the decreased local population could not support two cinemas as large as the “Abbey” and the “Erne” it is fortunate that the transition from cinema to Townhall would, in present conditions, be a profitable move.

March 11th 1950 G.A.A. trial games on Sunday next. Lisnaskea, champions for ten years until deposed by Belleek will play the Rest of South Fermanagh while Belleek, the reigning League and Championship winners will play the rest of North Fermanagh.

March 18th 1950 The death has taken place of Mr. James McGurl, Farnacassidy, Belleek, after a lengthy illness.

April 15th 1950 Erne Scheme Tragedies. John O’Dowd, Tullycrusheen, Tubbercurry, County Sligo, employed as a greaser by Cementation Co., Ltd., on the Erne Scheme at Ballyshannon, lost his life as a result of severe burns, received when he was refuelling an engine on a barge engaged in excavation operations. Petrol splashed on the heated exhaust pipe became ignited. The petrol in the can caught alight, and the unfortunate man was enveloped in flames. He jumped into the river and although suffering great agony, was able to pull himself on board again. He was conveyed to the Shiel Hospital, where he died. This is the second tragedy on the Erne within the past few days. Bernard Moore, Elphin, County Roscommon, having been killed when he fell over 100 feet down a shaft.

April 15th 1950 Sensational Fermanagh G.A.A. County Board Developments. Mr. Gerald Magee MPS, Irvinestown, County Chairman resigns over certain incidents connected with the Fermanagh-Monaghan game at Clones on Sunday week. He is being asked to reconsider. This year there are only four senior teams in the county, Belleek, Lisnaskea, Irvinestown and Roslea. There are twelve junior teams divided into three sections with Derrygonnelly, Garrison, Cashel and Ederney in section A.

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