ICA news: Mourneabbey represent Cork in ICA pitch and putt finals

Esther Cahill, Frances Murphy, Mary Moroney, Maureen Buckley of Mourneabbey Guild.

Mourneabbey Guild is set to represent Cork in the national ICA pitch and putt competition for the third time.

A team comprising Esther Cahill, Frances Murphy, Mary Moroney and Maureen Buckley will contest the final on October 3 in Seapoint Pitch & Putt Club. Last year, Mourneabbey Guild came fourth.

“We practise a lot. We go to ladies mornings on Tuesdays organised by Cork Pitch & Putt. We’re members of Kilshannig Club in Glantane,” says Esther.

The impetus to start pitch and putt came when the guild received Go for Life funding some years ago. 

The funding has also facilitated Mourneabbey ICA’s participation in zumba, bowls, yoga and aqua aerobics. This year they intend using the funding for pilates classes.

The 50-year-old guild was just hanging in there in terms of membership until four new, young women joined before the summer, bringing the number to 12 . 

“Two of the new members are my daughters, whom I coaxed in. One baby-sits for my daughter. The other is the babysitter’s friend. The youngest is 23. 

"A lot of young people are mad for crochet and knitting. If one young woman joins ICA, she’ll attract others her age,” says Esther.

Elected national regional ICA president for the south and east recently, Esther is going to be busy. 

Dee Devereux in Wexford has a similar role — each will be involved in visiting 13 federations. Esther is also in her third year as An Grianán teachta. The biggest challenge, she says, is encouraging people to go to An Grianán because they find the journey onerous. 

“If I have a group of more than 10, I’ll arrange for a bus to collect us from Heuston Station, which brings us straight there. It cuts out Luas, Dart and taxi.”

Esther and another Mourneabbey Guild member, Noreen Harold, are drivers with Liam’s Lifts, a service set up in Fermoy and introduced in Mallow last November, which transports patients to CUH for chemotherapy and radiotherapy.

“Each of us usually does it once a fortnight but it’s busy at the moment so we’re doing it once a week,” says Esther, who took on the role because she had time on her hands after retiring from her role as a care assistant with the HSE.

Mourneabbey Guild meets on the second and fourth Thursday of the month at 8.30pm in Burnfort School. New members welcome.


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