“And so another business closes its doors and with it goes a lifetime of memories.”
These were words of one punter when I called into the Snooty Pig recently to meet with the owner Mary Dalton, who has announced that the pub will close its doors for the final time later this month.
The pub was very busy the evening I called it but Mary told me that this has been a rarity since restrictions were lifted for licensed premises following Covid.
“What you are seeing here tonight is a rare occurrence. We are only open on weekend nights and that position is not viable for us or for any business. Covid changed everything and people got out of the habit of going to their local and they didn’t come back at the same level or anything like it after restrictions lifted” said Mary.
‘The Snooty Pig’ is one of the oldest pubs in Tipperary Town. The pub was named by current owner Mary Dalton as in bygone years there had been a piggery at the rear of the premises. The pub was renowned for its live entertainment along with dart and pool competitions and the revival of skittles.
Mary says that all of these added to the unique atmosphere of ‘The Snooty.’ We had some fantastic nights here with music and song, games of 45, darts, pool and skittles. The revival of skittles by Nuala O’Sullivan along with my daughter Olivia was wonderful and it was great to see old and young participate. The music, the singers and the entertainment was second to none. I am heartbroken to see the place go but it is just not viable anymore and I am not getting any younger. I retired from the business before and Liam O’Connor purchased the place from me. When Liam subsequently put the place up for sale myself and my partner, Jim Kelly, went to him and we bought it back again. That is how much we love this place and we love the regular customers who have been coming in here for years.” she said.
Limerick native Tony O’Mahony who has been frequenting the pub for 30 years said he will miss the place greatly. “The atmosphere here was always great and never an ounce of trouble from anyone. Mary is a sensational lady and I will miss meeting her and having the chat,” said Tony.
George O’Neill said he proposed to his wife Carmel there on Millennium Eve. “It is very sad to see the pub close and another loss to O’Brien Street. There is now only one pub remaining here on this street where there was once nine or 10. The sing songs here were legendary and Mary is one of the best.”
Breda Walsh said that she has been coming here since it opened and that she feels heartbroken at the impending closure. “All ages come here and young and old enjoy the company and the entertainment. This place has been a home from home for us. Mary will be greatly missed not just for her running the place but for her kindness in ensuring that everyone got home safe and sound at night,” added Breda.
Cllr Tony Black has been a regular for the most part of his adult life as both a member of staff and as a patron. “I started working here in 2008 and I spent 10 great years here. Mary is the most decent and fairest boss and person that you could meet. It is quite emotional for me to see the place closing as it is full of memories and is the place that I met my fiancé. It has been a happy place for everyone with parties and celebrations and always a great welcome” said Tony.
Eileen Carew felt so emotional for Mary who put her heart and soul into the place. “The street will never be the same without her and it will be a terrible loss to the area,” she said.
Michael Fitzgerald told of how much he appreciated the support that Mary gave to various groups in the town. “When we needed a sponsor for our team it was Mary who came to the rescue and looked after us so well. This is my regular and the place that I met my wife. It is a huge loss to our social circle,” added Michael.
Barry Fitzgerald echoed similar sentiments and said that he will really miss the place. "When the door is finally closed, then it will really hit home,” he said.
Finally Ellen Maher said that the closure will create a great void in the social life of the town. “Mary Dalton has been a friend to everyone and we will miss the atmosphere and the entertainment but most of all we will miss the people. The town will be all the poorer for its closure,” said Ellen.
And the final words to Mary Dalton. “This has been my life and my social life for more years than I care to remember. It gave me a reason to get up in the morning and now my anchor is gone. Jim has been a rock to me and has supported me since we re-purchased. Any job that needed doing Jim was on hand to oblige. We are both devastated to have to close but we want to thank our fantastic patrons who have supported us over many years and particular thanks to Rosie Finnan and to Jimmy Ryan who kept the place going for us when we needed. We also remember those w have now passed away and the many great nights that we enjoyed in their company. Its the end of the road for ‘The Snooty. Goodnight and God bless,” added Mary.
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