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Cian O'Shaughnessy wins a Tony Chocoloney Fairtrade chocolate bar from the lucky tip at the Fairly Traded Christmas Market last Saturday. Presented by Hannah Dowling with Lily O'Shaughnessy also in the picture.

Cian O'Shaughnessy wins a Tony Chocoloney Fairtrade chocolate bar from the lucky tip at the Fairly Traded Christmas Market last Saturday. Presented by Hannah Dowling with Lily O'Shaughnessy also in the picture.

Cian O'Shaughnessy wins a Tony Chocoloney Fairtrade chocolate bar from the lucky tip at the Fairly Traded Christmas Market last Saturday. Presented by Hannah Dowling with Lily O'Shaughnessy also in the picture.

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Tidy Towns raffle

Baltinglass Tidy Towns is running an online raffle. The raffle was deferred from the Duck Race that was held during the summer. There are amazing prizes up for grabs that were generously donated by the local businesses in the town. The prizes are as follows: 1st prize €100 voucher–All Things Natural, 2nd prize €50 Horan’s Food Voucher, 3rd prize €50 Joey’s Barbers Voucher, 4th prize €50 Horan’s Food Voucher, 5th prize €40 Noel’s Driving School Voucher, 6th prize €30 Hair by Pamela Voucher, 7th prize €30 Therese’s Nails Voucher, 8th prize €25 Evolution Hair Voucher, 9th prize Set of 4 Drinking Glasses, 10th prize Free Meal Deal Voucher from Bobalicious.

All great prizes to be won. You can buy lines on the Facebook and Instagram pages for €5 per line. Just pick a number from 1 – 100 and pay €5 by PayPal or Revolut, or PM the Facebook page to arrange payment. The closing date for the raffle is on November 27 at 6 p.m. We have some great ideas for projects for 2022.

Results of the entry to this year’s Tidy Towns competition are available on the main Tidy Towns website tidytowns.ie, under “Reports” section. We have done very well for our first year back in the competition since 2013. Thanks to all our sponsors and volunteers for making it possible to begin

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much needed improvements around our town and on all the approach roads. When a community is willing to pull together and help out whenever possible, much can be achieved. Onwards and upwards.

Stratford Community Café/Shop Project

Stratford and Grangecon Development Group is appealing for local support for the very ambitious plan to complete the Community Café/Shop project. The group needs more members to help with ideas and fundraising efforts. They meet on the first Thursday of the month from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. in the Coach House next to Stratford RC Church (entrance from church grounds). The next meeting is on Thursday, December 2 at 7 p.m. in the Coach House. Please come along and remember to bring your masks.

Crafty Craic

Crafty Craic in Knockinarrigan are continuing with their seasonal workshops over December. On Saturday, December 4 you could learn to make a leather- bound journal as a gift for someone special. On Sunday, December 12 Crafty Craic will host an Christmas Table Runner Making class with textile artist Maeve Hunter.

For more information or to book your place, contact Karen at 087 2750873 or email craftycraic@gmail.com.

WW Historical Society journal

West Wicklow Historical Society’s launched their 11th Journal recently. This new edition features articles by an array of the area’s best known local historians, including Jim Corley, Brendan Corrigan, Cora Crampton, Johnny Glennon and Emma Lyons, and Rosemary Raughter from over the mountains. There are articles on oatmeal biscuits, railway history, Punchestown fashion, early twentieth century Unionist Wicklow women, the lead up to the Civil War in Kildare, a Wicklow man in India, Irish language influence on West Wicklow placenames, a beautiful woman in a long red cloak, and a murder in 1916.

Boleying or, more formally, transhumance, in the Wicklow area is examined. The sixteenth century ‘O’Tooles of Imail’ are brought to life. Burgage is visited and Baltinglass Courthouse is revisited. The Rev. Ogle Moore of Manor Kilbride is remembered. And then there is the Baltinglass-born Jennie Wyse Power (another O’Toole) and her husband featuring in the pages of Joyce’s Ulysses.This Journal is bursting at the seams.

Copies of the journal are now in circulation. If you would like to buy one (or a few–if you would like to send them to West Wicklow / Kildare people living elsewhere for Christmas) they are available at the following locations: Burke’s, Main Street, Baltinglass; Dermot Hughes’, Dunlavin; Crafty Craic, Knockanarrigan.

Fairly Traded market

Last Saturday at McAllister in Baltinglass was a hive of ‘socially distanced’ activity in the Square for the Baltinglass Group Fairly Traded Christmas market.

People enjoyed sampling Fairtrade refreshments of Tea, Coffee, Hot chocolate provided, and Fairtrade Banana Bread which was kindly sponsored by the Grange Con Kitchen.

Fairly traded Christmas decorations sold well with people pleased to be able to support crafters in Nepal and Bethlehem. Tony’s Chocoloney sponsored a Lucky Dip to win Tony’s Fairtrade bars of chocolate with samples also on offer.

The message was to swap your basket and include Fairtrade Tea , Coffee, Chocolate and bananas to make a real difference in the lives of farmers, workers and their families in developing countries so we can build back fairer together.

People were encouraged to think of having a more sustainable Christmas. There were ideas for sustainable gift wrapping, free to take Children’s Advent book calendar, shopping at your local refill station, the Grange Con Store Cupboard. Information booklets were provided by Jim Callery of Wicklow County Council Environment Department, also sustainable crafting products from The Crafting Farmer and a hamper from The Community Shop to encourage people to shop at The Community Shop or The People’s Shop this year.

Thanks to everyone who volunteered on the day and to all who supported the event and the raffle. The winner of the Fairtrade Hamper sponsored by Baltinglass Fairtrade Group was Evelynn Deans and the winner of The Grange Con Store Cupboard hamper sponsored by Jen Page was Paula Kavanagh.

If you are interested in becoming a member of the Baltinglass Fairtrade group, you can message them on their Facebook or Instagram page.

Community Employment

Stratford/Grangecon Local Development has vacancies for positions in Childcare, Administration, Caretaker, Environmental Workers. These positions are located in Stratford, Donard, Grangecon and Dunlavin. Training and Educational opportunities will be offered as part of your placement to enhance and develop your skills. To qualify for any of the above positions you must be in receipt of a Social Welfare payment for 12 months and be over 21 years of age. For further details contact Tom Whittle at 087 9227051 or send an email to Stratfordce@gmail.com.

Baltinglass Welcomes

Baltinglass Welcomes continues to look for a 2-4 bedroomed house or apartment to rent immediately within walking distance to the town for a Syrian Refugee family. The size of the family accepted will be determined by the size of the home that is available.

Please contact Maire Lawless at baltorefugees@gmail.com with any information about available housing. The group is very thankful for all the community support they have received to date and is so excited to enter this next phase of the project. Please spread the word.

Grangecon Christmas market

The Grangecon Christmas Market is shaping up to be a wonderful one-stop-shop for all your Christmas presents this year. With a wide array of craft stalls you will have plenty to choose from. There will also be a cake sale organised by the Parent’s Association of Grangecon National School to raise funds for the school. The event will coincide with the switching on of the Christmas lights. Save the date of Sunday, December 5 from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. in the village.

Flower arranging workshop

The next meeting of the Rathvilly/Castledermot Garden & Flower Club will be held in Teach Diarmada on Thursday, November 25 at 7.30 p.m. Karen Robinson from Wexford Flower Club will do a Christmas Flower Arranging Demonstration and inspire participants for their own Festive preparations. Please reserve your seat by text, phone call or WhatsApp to Eileen on 087 22 45 917. Tea, cakes, chat will follow the raffle of all Karen’s arrangements. Entry is €5. Raffle will be €5. Please bring Covid Certificates and wear masks until seated.

Christmas Tractor Run

Kiltegan community is running a Christmas Tractor Run on Saturday, December 4 in aid of Baltinglass Hospital and the Lalor Centre. They would like to invite everyone to decorate your tractor, truck or vehicle of choice with festive lights and light up the countryside for Christmas.

The event will begin with opening of registration for the Tractor Run (all vehicles welcome) at 3.30 p.m. at St. Peter’s Parish Centre. At 4.30 p.m. the event kicks off with a gathering at the Green in Kiltegan to switch on the Christmas Lights and to meet with Santa (a complimentary gift for all children). Refreshments will be served. The Tractor Run will then get under way at 6 p.m. sharp. Entry is €25. All are welcome to come along to enjoy the festivities while contributing to a great local cause.

Social dancing in Donard

Social Dancing is starting back in Donard Community Hall on Saturday, December 18 from 9 p.m. to 12 p.m. Music will be by Thomas Maguire & Fiona Ennis. Admission is €10. Refreshments will be served.


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