From the pages of the Down Recorder, June 5, 1979

From the pages of the Down Recorder, June 5, 1979

5 June 2019

MOURNES — A record 2,355 enthusiastic ramblers set out on the 23rd Mourne Wall Walk from sun-blitzed Newcastle on Sunday morning — and at the end of the day 1,419 people had completed the arduous 22-mile trek to collect their badges and certificates.

The walk, organised by the Youth Hostelling Association of Northern Ireland, brought together people of all ages and professions. Apart from a host of blister complaints, the bulk of real casualties were a handful of people taken to Downe Hospital suffering from heat exhaustion.

One woman suffering from exhaustion had to be taken by an RAF helicopter to the Red Cross mobile treatment room and a man, who was knocked unconscious when a small boulder struck him on the head, was also taken to hospital.

Despite minor upsets, the whole day was a big success story. The chief organiser, Mr Paddy McAteer, said he was stunned by the huge turnout.

“The walk was a tremendous success with a record number of starters and a high number of people who completed the trek,” he said. “This walk is undoubtedly getting bigger and bigger and it is amazing to see people from all walks of life coming together.”

The walkers were supported by a range number of voluntary route marshals. Also in attendance were Red Cross and Mountain Rescue personnel.

CARRYDUFF — The police superintendent killed by a landmine explosion near Crossmaglen on Sunday night came from Carryduff. 

Superintendent Stanley Hanna (48) died along with Constable Kevin Thompson (22), from Portrush, after the explosion in a laneway.

Superintendent Hanna, who was married with three children, was stationed at Bessbrook and was out on a joint patrol with men of the 2nd Queen’s Regiment. He was the seventh policeman attached to Bessbrook RUC to be killed during the past year.

The booby-trap explosion caught the patrol unawares when it was triggered off at approximately 9.20pm. The superintendent and the constable were virtually standing over the bomb when it exploded.

The funeral service took place yesterday from Carryduff Parish Church.

KILLYLEAGH — The residents of Irish Street in Killyleagh received some bright news this week with the fresh information that street lighting in 

the redevelopment area could be in operation by mid July.

Local councillor Mr Sam Osborne informed the Killyleagh, Shrigley and District Town Committee at their monthly meeting that he had been in consultation with the site engineers and he had been assured that the necessary cables would be connected.

The town committee have been pressing since last year for better street lighting in the area, but with little success. With winter over, during which time many elderly residents were effectively trapped in their homes after dark, the news may not be much consolation for residents.

The committee also heard that their plea for a telephone kiosk at Cuan Beach had been refused and that an alternative site has been found for the Toye Kiosk at the New Line.

ANNSBOROUGH — The youngsters of Annsborough have at last been able to use their new playing fields where a mix-up in the erection of a fence had kept them out for several months. Grazing cattle which have been using the field have been banished to the sidelines behind a new fence.

The problem started when Enterprise Ulster erected only one fence at the new playground and forgot about s second fence to keep out nearby cattle. The mistake led to angry words at Down Council where officials were blamed for not supervising the work and inspecting the completed job.

However, Enterprise Ulster workmen responded quickly to a council call and within days had put things right.

SHRIGLEY — A new factory in Shrigley, which will manufacture plastic products and employ 40 people, is expected to open within the next few months.

The factory is sited in premises vacated by the tannery at Shrigley and the man behind the venture is Mr Garfield Brown, who already owns the Killyleagh Rug Company.

It is not exactly clear when the new firm will open, but it’s managing director, Mr Lance Walker, says he is optimistic that production will start in August.

He said the factory will carry out plastic processing and will provide materials for the packaging industry. “Obviously we want to start as soon as possible, but at the moment machinery is being delivered and we are waiting for more to arrive. This makes it impossible to announce when production will start,” he added.

CROSSGAR — Mr Edward Cargo, from Crossgar, retired this week after 38 years of service to transport and received an inscribed gold watch from his colleagues to mark the occasion.

Mr Cargo, who was based at Downpatrick bus station, received his gold watch from the station manager, Mr Ian Cunningham, at a special function held in the Slaney Inn, Raholp.

Mr Cunningham, who made the presentation on behalf of Mr Cargo’s colleagues at the Downpatrick, Newcastle and Ballynahinch Ulsterbus depots, thanked him for his long and distinguished service in transport, starting with the old Northern Ireland Road Transport Authority and finally Ulsterbus.

Mr Jim Prior, on behalf of the engineering department, wished Mr Cargo a long and happy retirement and thanked him for all the help and friendship he gave to all the men in the garage over the years.

SAINTFIELD — Preparations for the 35th annual Saintfield and District Agricultural Show have been finalised and the organisers are hoping for good weather to ensure big crowds.

Entries for the agricultural, home industry and poultry sections are very high. Hunter section entries total 162, including 20 working hunters and the number of children’s ponies entered is 130. A total of 250 cattle have been entered and sheep entries total 106.

Poultry entries have reached a record 387 and the 750 entries in the home industries section is another record.

KILLOUGH — The Killough Festival Queen, Jacqueline King, will make her big appearance in the village on Friday night when she officially launches the bumper three-day festival programme which is packed with a host of exciting events.

Miss King will take her place on the opening ceremony platform in the village car park at 6pm and will be joined by members of Killough Village Committee and local clergy. To coincide with the official opening, a rocket will be set off from the coastguard station and six bottles of champagne will be uncorked.

ARDGLASS — Mr Frederick G Rooney, from Saintfield, has been appointed principal of Ardglass Primary School. He takes up the appointment on September 1 in succession to Mr W G Graham, who will be retiring.

Mr Rooney, who is 41 and lives on the Crossgar Road, is  married man who was educated at Royal School, Dungannon. 

He commenced his teaching career at Saintfield High School in 1959. At present he is completing a new course of study on the teaching of Mathematics at Stranmillis College.

He is a keen sportsman and is involved in coaching mini-rugby at Ballynahinch Rugby Club.

COMBER — The townspeople of Comber paid tribute to a former doctor at a special presentation last week. Dr Muriel Gault was presented with a framed picture of her late husband, Dr Brian Henry, who practised as a GP in the town for more than 46 years.

Dr Henry, who died last October, followed his father, who had served the community for 55 years.