07 Aug 2022

A peaceful corner of Tipperary where the community spirit seems second to nowhere else

A peaceful corner of Tipperary where the community spirit seems second to nowhere else

Coffee Morning in Burncourt. Just one of the many initiatives undertaken during the past year.

Another year when we really needed community. Another year when the presence of Covid tested our endurance. A year when planned visits from loved ones from abroad were derailed, a year when loved ones passed to their eternal rewards. Yet it was also a year when hope lived on with Weddings and the arrival of new born babies, when we once again realised that “There is no power for change greater than a community discovering what it cares about”
Burncourt is such a community. It is a community which progresses in the way it addresses its joys, concerns, disappointment and sadness. It is a community with a spirit, an energy and a consciousness. There is a wonderful school ,a welcoming church , two inviting pubs, Maureen and her shop – the heartbeat of the village and sporting organisations in which the youth and their mentors participate.
Burncourt has an impressive community centre, thanks to the foresight of the men and women who in the late 1970’s set up a Community Council. Building on this, the Community Council acts as a pulse for all as it endeavours to gauge how best to support the needs of the locality.
The Covid 19 Pandemic has delivered a severe backlash to the activities which have a home in Burncourt Community Hall. The weekly 45 Game is sorely missed as are the Dancing Classes, the Drama rehearsals, the Ciorcal Cáinte , the Flower and Garden Club , the meeting of Parent and Toddlers and the numerous events which are held throughout the year.
How we would relish one of Burncourt’s Famous Big Breakfasts or an Afternoon Tea? How we would laugh at the antics of the Drama Group, attend a historical talk, a cookery demonstration, a Children’s Halloween Party? What a loss it was not to hold the ever popular festive Community Christmas Party which not only the guests but the helpers eagerly anticipate? Indeed what a disappointment to be unable to provide comfort to the bereaved with a funeral tea in the Hall.
The Streetscape in Burncourt took on a whole new look in 2021 when Tipperary County Council proceeded with the village renewal. Safety being the priority , the footpaths and resurfacing have really enhanced the village. The built out areas have provided a backdrop for further creativity in the future and provided a home for the sculpture of the Galtee Mountain Boy.
Burncourt is a community where Volunteerism is a given. People are always willing to help whether it be the Annual Festivals both in Summer and now much acclaimed Pumpkin Festival, a clean up in the village or a project being worked.
It had to be said that in 2021, the innate goodness in people’s hearts was at all times evident in the numerous acts of kindness, the unspoken visits to those alone, the trips to the Post Office , the shops and the phone calls.
The community spirit continued. We decked the village at Easter and the Pumpkin Festival showed tremendous enthusiasm. The change over to Digital Festivals in Burncourt and Mountain Lodge not only elicited an immediate response from near and far but ensured a legacy for the future. Against the odds, A Wellness Festival was held in Glengarra Wood, the inaugural concert in the Mountain Lodge’s Forest Song Cycle was a tremendous success and the Illumination of Burncourt Castle in September was an unforgettable experience . And for Christmas the parish was resplendent with the Nativity Scene and a concerted effort by all in the community to bedeck the locality with lights of every hue.
The kindness and generosity of the community continued with fervour as we walked into 2022 for the Burncourt Hospice Movement Fundraiser, once more showing that we stand together for, and with each other

‘What a Strange Journey We are On
But Together and Not Alone,
Despite Everything the Sun Rises ,
The Days Turn,
Each one a little Brighter,

Let Us Breath in the Coming of Spring ,
With The Birds Singing Again,
And Though Our Days are Still Dark
Let Us Reach for the Hard Earned Light,

In 2022, May the Mantle of Peace Protect Us
And Remain firmly Rooted in Our Hearts,
May We Embrace the Gifts of Hope,Love and Kindness.
And Let the Spirit of Joy Sustain Us

We have weathered the Long, Long Sorrow
Of Worry, Pain and Loss.
Let’s have Faith that when this Pandemic has Passed,
We will Look Back on How we Stood Together and Smile”

Stay Safe All.

Breeda Fitzgerald

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