Words: Peter Martin
Photos by jbs photos Kilkenny
There is no doubting that Kilkenny and her streets are full of history.
Walkin Street falls into that category.
Ask any resident from the area and they will give a glowing report of growing up on that patch.
In his book on ‘St. Rioch’s’, former brewery employee Tom Reade speaks of days of handball, hurling and soccer in The Fair Green and ‘pitch and toss’ at The Closh.
Hurling, it is said, was played in The Fair Green from early morning until darkness fell.
There was also memories of the circus visiting the area as well as ‘Fair days’, where young boys had a chance of making a few pence looking after cattle and sheep.
One landmark which is remembered with fondness is Haughney’s orchard.
Mrs Ellen Haughney’s house and orchard was beside the Fair Green, where the cinema is now located.
Older residents remember the orchard as having beautiful red apples.
Following the death of Mrs Haughney in 1945, the premises was purchased by Kilkenny Corporation.
In 2005 St Mary’s parish built houses and apartments on the land and it now includes St Mary’s day care centre which provides a range of activities including meals, recreational activities and health promotion.
The centre is just a hop, skip, and jump from The Kilkenny Observer office on Friary Street and so on Christmas week we called to join in the Christmas get together and lunch.
The twenty plus attendance enjoyed the fabulous food prepared and served by Alan Cullen and his team. There was laughter, chat and stories. A lot of stories.
What a fantastic afternoon it was.