Sunday 21 July 2019

End of an era

Sad day for Mary as closure ends Long family's 60-year links to local postal service

Kiltealy post mistress Mary Long pictured on her last day in Kiltealy Post office on Saturday
Kiltealy post mistress Mary Long pictured on her last day in Kiltealy Post office on Saturday

Brendan Keane

It was the end of an era in Kiltealy village when local postmistress, Mary Long, closed the doors of her business for the final time on Saturday, February 2.

The connection between Mrs Long's family and the post office goes back to the 1960s when it was purchased by Annie Murphy.

In an emotional post on social media Mrs Long's daughter, Sharanne, said her mum 'never failed to support us and the community for all these years'.

She also thanked the hall committee for their support and expressed gratitude to all of the people who went along to the 'thank you and farewell' party in the hall.

Noted Wexford historian, author, and documentary maker Michael Fortune posted a video he made of the people going about their business on the day the post office closed for good.

In many ways the footage highlighted to perfection the full importance of such facilities to the rural communities they serve.

For generations Mrs Long's business was at the heart of everything that went on in Kiltealy and for many people it wasn't just a place to post letters or collect pensions, it was a place to get social interaction and in that regard its importance to the community cannot be overstated.

Just how important it was for local people was emphasised by some of the comments posted on social media in the wake of the closure on Saturday, January 26.

Obviously, it was an emotional event for Mrs Long and while she wished not to talk too much about it she did say it was a sad day for her to close after 60 years of the post office being associated with her family.

Mrs Long also thanked all of the community for their support and friendship over the years.

Enniscorthy Guardian