Golden celebrations for Kilkenny Goodwill society

Mrs Mary Mc Kee and Paddy Staunton, experts on the violin gave many happy hours with their most enjoyable music. They played for over 30 years together for Irish dancing at Kilkenny Feis. Both were founding members of Kilkenny Goodwill society

By Stephen Patterson

Photos: jbs photos kilkenny

If you can think back to last Tuesday, you will remember that the weather was very inclement.

A wet miserable May day.

Kilkenny folk had heeded the forecast by the good people of Met Eireann and jackets and umbrellas were the fashion of the day.

However, if you were lucky enough to have been in the vicinity of Kilkenny’s oldest hotel-The Clubhouse- on Patrick Street, then not even the horrible showers could dampen your spirits.

You’d imagine the rainfall would put people in bad form. Well for some maybe. But certainly not the ladies of the Kilkenny Goodwill society

The ballroom of the Clubhouse was alive with music. Thirty or so people clapped, danced sang and cheered as Larry and Carmel Browne transformed the Ballroom into an entertainment extravaganza.

And the reason?

Kilkenny Goodwill society was celebrating 50 years in existence.

Apart from the wonderful music from Larry and Carmel, members of the society didn’t have to be asked twice when they were called on to do an act.

Phyliss Lacey opened proceedings with a few songs and then Lucy Lennon took the microphone and laughter bounced off the walls. Joke after joke, yarn after yarn. Lucy was in top form.

To borrow a line from Frank Carson ‘It’s the way ye tell ‘em’.’

And Lucy sure can tell them.

If Simon Cowell was in attendance, let’s just say Phyllis and Lucy would have received the Golden Buzzer award.


Founded in ‘74

The group which was founded in 1974 has seen many changes since their formation, and last week they came together to celebrate their Golden anniversary,

Finger food, plenty of chat, lots of memories and lovely music made it a very special day.

Needless to say, most memories were of people who had founded the society and remembering members who have since died.

Speaking to The Kilkenny Observer, Goodwill member Birdy Hayes said that the society has had some wonderful people involved over the last 50 years . “ We are thankful to the hundreds of people down through the years who have helped in any way”, said Birdy.

Mrs Hayes also took time to thank Ian Brennan and the staff of the Clubhouse for the beautiful food to help them celebrate the special anniversary.


Different venues

Over the years, The Goodwill society have had different venues they have called home.

These include The Metrepole hotel, The Presentation school and The Carlton Ballroom.

They currently meet on a weekly basis in St Mary’s Centre at Haugney Green.

The get together includes chats, music and plenty of fun.

Since their foundation, the society has enjoyed many trips, including a visit to Áras an Uachtaráin where 30 members from Kilkenny were greeted by then president of Ireland Mary Robinson. Other memorable visits included day trips to many resorts all over Ireland.

It is fair to say that while the meteorologists will record Tuesday May 21st as a dark, damp dreary day, for the Kilkenny Goodwill Society it was the very opposite.

Happy anniversary folks.

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