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ROSS HOTEL GOLF SOCIETY – 40 YEARS AND DRIVING ON

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The Ross Golf Society, founded in the Ross Hotel in 1978, is Killarney's oldest golf society and is celebrating its 40 years of existence with a special 40th Anniversary Reunion Outing on Killarney's Killeen Course on June 9.

The society welcomes new members and, in particular, the return of any former members and past captains.

Golf societies abound nowadays. Many parishes, GAA clubs and bars have their own but in 1978 there was only one in Kerry: The Old Reserves in Tralee.

The first impetus came from a group of senior caddies, all skilful golfers and Killarney members. After some discussion with some fellow club members, a small group met informally in the Ross Hotel and formed a society that would be open to members of any recognised golf club. Affiliation to the GUI followed some years later.

Support from the Ross Hotel was readily forthcoming and to this day three generations of the Treacy family have generously provided assistance. Pádraig Treacy is still the president of the society.

Among the founding group were Seán Counihan, Dermot Roche, Kieran O'Connor and the late Ian O'Leary. Kieran is still a member and has given unstinting service to the society down through the years.

Ralph O'Connell joined the society in its early years and served as hard-working Hon. Secretary for close on 30 years. Described by Nick O'Brien in his 2007 Captain's report as "the heart and soul of the society", Ralph  came to be a stalwart  of the Ross, in his annual reports praising good golf or diligent committee work and at all times insisting on high standards.

The immediate aims of the society were to promote the game of golf and provide more competitive golf than the club's Sunday competitions afforded at that time. Generous local sponsorship and competition entry fees - an average of 45 entries for nine competitions in 1986 - ensured that attractive prizes could be provided.  Junior Finnegan's Captain's prize attracted 68 entries in 1988. The relaxed informality of society golf helped promising young golfers to improve their game and reduce their handicaps.

AGM reports show that up to 50% of members won prizes during a season's eight or nine competitions. The society was welcomed enthusiastically by Killarney members. By 1988 membership had grown to 86 with a waiting list of eight and Hon. Secretary, Ralph O’Connell, had to remind members that some clubs could not provide sufficient tee-times for the society.

There were four women members, Maria O'Connor, Marguerita Mulcahy, Taal Burke and Dorothy Teskey, wife of fellow member Ron Teskey.

The Society's founding members, Seán Counihan, Kieran O'Conner, Dermot Roche and Ian O'Leary, were part of Killarney Golf Club's 1977 Pierse Purcell-winning team - no doubt helping to prompt the founding of the Ross in 1978. The Society was also well represented in Killarney's Barton Shield win in 1980.

Killarney provided three outings every year and all the Kerry clubs were visited during the last forty years as, also, were Kanturk, Lee Valley, Fota, Macroom, Mallow and Cork Golf Club. A unique outing in the very early years was a visit to The Isle of Man, the details of which are lost in the mists of time.

Another unique and highly successful outing was the visit to Ballykisteen, Co. Limerick, when stationmaster and long-time treasurer, Mike Leahy, booked us onto a rail carriage to Limerick Junction and a bus down the road to the golf course. A very enjoyable sing-song took place in the carriage on the way home.

However, the good times were destined not to last. Golf societies began to proliferate in the region and members could no longer afford membership of a club and two societies. Increased club green fees and a €15 charge on members of societies playing in their home club added to the expense.

In the meantime Killarney Club competitions had increased in number and, as many members were now of senior vintage, the  increasingly popular 'Kerry Seniors Tour’ and the fortnightly Killarney Club Seniors satisfied their need for competitive golf.

However, generation succeeds generation, and the sons of previous members or captains joined the Ross and became captains: Bernard O'Shea, Mike Stack, Seán  O'Sullivan, Neil and John Coffey, thus bringing with them new and younger members giving promise of a brighter future for the Ross Hotel Golf Society.

At the helm today are:

President - Pádraig Treacy

Captain - Jim Morris

Treasurer - Michael Leahy

Secretary - Gary Browne

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Applecroft B&B named in Ireland’s Top 10

By Michelle Crean What a better way for a local business to celebrate its silver jubilee than to be named in the Top 10 places to stay in Ireland especially as they prepare to reopen after the pandemic. Owners Kathy and Don Brosnan, who run Applecroft House in Woodlawn, were named number 6 in Ireland’s […]

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By Michelle Crean

What a better way for a local business to celebrate its silver jubilee than to be named in the Top 10 places to stay in Ireland especially as they prepare to reopen after the pandemic.

Owners Kathy and Don Brosnan, who run Applecroft House in Woodlawn, were named number 6 in Ireland’s Top 10 B&Bs for 2022 by the Irish Independent ‘Reader Travel Awards’ while Ireland’s Best B&B was named as Dingle’s Pax House.

The couple began their business in 1997 and are very happy with the feedback from visitors who voted for their B&B, especially after two difficult years.

“I’m thrilled, especially as we’re celebrating our silver jubilee this year,” Kathy told the Killarney Advertiser.

The couple built their house in the early ’80s and aptly named it ‘Applecroft’ as it was built in a field which has an orchard.

In the late ’90s they opened five spacious rooms up, each with its own theme; 
‘Poet’s Corner’, ‘Past Times’, ‘The 19th Green’, ‘The Race-goer’s Club’ and ‘The Kerry Way’, for guests as Kathy, who worked in The Europe Hotel and the Great Southern Killarney for many years, had a passion to bring a great stay experience to guests visiting Killarney. They kept themselves busy planting in their two acre garden during the pandemic.

They have won numerous awards over the years and have had film crews in but this latest award is the icing on the cake for the couple who are looking forward to reopening in late March.

“It’s amazing, and a bonus especially with the two years we’ve had. We’ve never experienced anything like that. It was “wow” – we were preparing to reopen on St Patrick’s Day that year and all of a sudden everything closed down on the 16. It was a big shock.”

Don creates amazing bread and scones which guests rave about, she added.

“I was delighted as we came tenth for breakfast and sixth for the B&B.”

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Tributes paid to life-long Legion supporter

By Sean Moriarty Legion GAA Club has led tributes to one of their most ‘fervent’ supporters who passed away on Tuesday. Described as one of the town’s ‘old stock’, Tim Looney from Coolgraine Park and late of Daltons Avenue, was a central part of Killarney’s rich sporting heritage. As well as a life-long supporter of […]

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By Sean Moriarty

Legion GAA Club has led tributes to one of their most ‘fervent’ supporters who passed away on Tuesday.

Described as one of the town’s ‘old stock’, Tim Looney from Coolgraine Park and late of Daltons Avenue, was a central part of Killarney’s rich sporting heritage.

As well as a life-long supporter of Legion, he played basketball in the famous town leagues of the 1970s and the seven-a-side soccer ‘Wipeouts’ competitions.

“He was a very proud Legion man and always flew the green and white flag out his window whenever the club was playing in a big game,” PRO Enda Walshe told the Killarney Advertiser. “He was a fervent loyal club supporter but was also one of the characters of the winter basketball leagues.”

Tim was also a regular participant in Dart Pub Leagues back in the 1970s and 1980s.

Tim’s funeral took place today (Friday). He was laid to rest at Killarney Burial Ground after 10am Mass St Mary’s Cathedral.

Tim is survived by his wife Nuala, his children Joanne, Paudie and Timmy, and was a much loved grandfather to Stephen, Makaela, Chloe, Padraic, Keelan, Alex and the late Lorna. He will also be sadly missed by his daughters-in-law Margaret and Sharon, son-in-law Tony, sisters Kathleen, Sheila and Ann, brothers Lewis-John and Paddy, brothers-in-law, sisters-in-law, nieces and nephews, grand-nieces and grand-nephews, relatives, neighbours and many great friends.

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