BALLYKINE — A young boy’s brave climb through a narrow pipe to save a trapped lamb has earned him the thanks and congratulations of the USPCA and the Water Service.
Eleven year-old David McDowell, of Ballykine, near Ballynahinch, stepped in to save the day when Mr Patrick Fitzpatrick, a farmer in the Drumaroad area, discovered that a missing lamb was stuck at the top of an old overflow pipe on his farm.
He called in the USPCA and the Water Service to see if they could anything to help, but unfortunately the 18-inch neck of the pipe was too small for any adult to climb up.
The two authorities realised they would have to bring in special equipment the next day to free thelamb, although they knew it was unlikely the trapped creature could survive another day in the pipe.
On Wednesday afternoon Mr William McDowell brought his two children, David and Paula, over to Mr Fitzpatrick’s farm and on hearing of the plight of the lamb David volunteered to climb up and rescue it.
In heavy rain and with only a torch to see the way ahead, David crawled up the dark and dripping 40 yards of the old pipe. Behind him his father shouted words of encouragement, while in front of him the pitiful bleating of the lamb spurred him on.
Although he admits he was scared, David pushed onward and by the time he had rounded the second bend in the pipe he could see two eyes whinging down at him through the darkness — he had reached the lamb!
Grabbing a leg of the terrified animal, David dragged it back down to safety and admitted he was glad to see daylight once more. Farmer Fitzpatrick was extremely pleased to see both David and the lamb again and gave the brave boy a reward.
SEAFORDE — Seaforde has become a “forgotten village.” That is the claim angry residents are making. In response the villagers’ complaints, Down District Trades Union Council have written the Housing Minister, Mr Ray Carter, asking him to speed up a housing programme in Seaforde.
The Housing Executive have already announced plans to start building ten houses in the village in January next year.
“This is not good enough,” one local resident, Mrs C O’Neill, told a recent meeting of the Trades Council. “The people of Seaforde want action now. It is disgraceful to suggest building homes in 1979 when they are urgently needed now.”
She was supported by members of the Trades Council, who said the Housing Executive had not fully acknowledged the needs of the people of Seaforde.
DOWNPATRICK — Downpatrick may soon have its first Chamber of Trade if one local businessman has his way. Mr Brendan Rodgers, the owner of a Downpatrick store, has called a meeting of all the traders and business and professional people in the town, at which he hopes to form the chamber.
The meeting will be held in Rea’s hotel on Monday night and Mr Rodgers says he feels there is a need for such a commercial grouping in the town. He hopes that a good cross-section of people in the town will turn up at the meeting and that the activities of the Chamber can be worked out in detail.
Mr Rodgers said he got the idea to form the group after listening to other traders in the town and after he had been to a meeting of the Belfast Chamber of Trade. He said he had been very impressed with the Belfast traders.
Mr Rodgers said that Chambers of Trade in general had done much useful work, particularly in keeping rates down throughout the Province.
KILLYLEAGH — An elderly Killyleagh man was tied up and held for a number of hours when intruders ransacked his home at Ballymacreely.
The intruders forced their way into the house at around 8.30pm and after tying up the occupant they ransacked the house.
They left with a sum of money, but did not release the man. However, the occupant eventually freed himself and reported the incident to the police.
Police are now investigating the robbery, which is similar to another committed on the Killyleagh Road, Downpatrick, earlier in the year.
BALLYGOWAN — The Free Presbyterian Church has again been refused permission for the erection of a temporary church in Ballygowan. The Planning Appeals Commission has turned down an appeal by Sandown Free Presbyterian Church for permission for the church.
Sandown Free Presbyterian has been hoping to site their church on the Belfast Road, but the Commission turned down the application, saying that it would be highly undesirable from a land use planning context.
Although disappointed, Sandown Free Presbyterian have not give up hope. The minister of the Sandown church in Belfast, the Rev David McIlveen, said they had already applied for planning permission for another site closer to the village.
“We do accept the planners’ point of view, but we are hoping that our new site will be all right,” Mr McIlveen said.
Mr McIlveen said that at the moment his church was holding services in the bandstand in Ballygowan on Sunday afternoons and these were attracting congregations of up to 200 people.
ARDGLASS — People in an Ardglass housing estate are being terrified by packs of stray dogs and the problem has become so bad that a worried councillor has asked the police to take immediate action.
Mr Dermot Curran said the dogs could become potential killers if they are allowed to continue running wild in the Meadowcourt estate. People have reported incidents of being surrounded by packs of up to five dogs and Mr Curran is worried that some day someone is going to be bitten.
“The danger is especially with young children. If these dogs attack a child, they could cause serious injury,” he said.
Mr Curran felt the problem was being caused by dogs being abandoned by owners who no longer want them. “These dogs are starving and are becoming more and more dangerous.”
NEWCASTLE — Eight sand yachts took part in racing on Newcastle beach on Sunday afternoon. The racing, which is organised by the local Sandpipers club, takes place every week. When weather conditions do not permit, the racing is switched to Tyrella.
Altogether there are 15 sand yachts in the Sandpipers club. Membership has jumped to 50 since the club’s formation in October. Sailing knowledge is an advantage for any would-be racer, but it is not necessary.
MURLOUGH — Seal watching, woodland wildlife and the natural history of sand dunes are some of the activities which visitors to Murlough Nature Reserve will be able to enjoy this summer.
A series of guided walks with wardens has been arranged by the National Trust for Sundays during July and August when the weather permits.
CROSSGAR — Crossgar and District Anglers and Wildfowlers Association held its annual dinner and presentation of prizes in the Dunmore Hotel, Killyleagh. The chairman, Mr Jack Brown, said the club owed a lot to the people behind the scenes who helped to keep the club going successfully.
DUNDRUM — Dundrum United’s hopes of reaching the Harry Clarke Cup final for the third consecutive time could well be blocked by Kilkeel Swifts in Saturday’s semi-final tie.
The Mourne team, who are chasing a league and cup double, have a good record over Dundrum this season and are determined to lift the trophy, which is currently on the sideboard of their keenest rivals, Annalong.
PORTAFERRY — The new sailing programme at Portaferry Sailing Club will begin on Easter Sunday. At the club’s annual meeting the outgoing chairman said it was important to get more young people involved in sailing.