Accommodation Road, Carlow links Green Lane to
Pollerton Road and consisted of fifteen single storey slate roofed
houses on one side of the road, comprising two rooms and a loft.
The name Accommodation Road is entirely
practical, the houses being built in the 1840's to accommodate the
workers who were building the Railway. The road was enclosed with gates
at both ends; Green Lane and being known as Holdens Corner. The houses
numbered 1 to 15 (from Green Lane) were owned by a Mr. White of Wexford
and later by the O'Rourke Bros, of Montgomery Street.
The houses are of
course long gone. Where they stood is now an open space, to the rear of
which now proudly stands the fine headquarters of our excellent Fire
Brigade. The siting of this building is entirely appropriate being
almost in the garden of the services' first captain John Sweeney.
Pollerton Road and an Eire Og member. James Brady. P.C. succeeded in
having the Urban District Council, of which he is a member, name its
Tullow Road Housing Estate John Sweeney Park, in honour of this most
distinguished servant of Carlow.
No. 1: Had a fountain outside
it and was occupied by John Geoghegan, whose family was associated with
the organising of the famous '98 Senior Football Tournament in 1897. The
proceeds going towards the enclosing of the Croppy Hole in
His father John (wife Myra)
had a shop at 2 Pollerton Road, opposite Fountain House i.e. Jackie
Parker (Ballickmoyler) and had daughters Mai (Mrs. Dunster), Nellie
(Mrs. McCullough) and sons Ned, 13 Staplestown Road; John, J.K.L. Nellie
and Joe are still with us. Tony was interned on Spike Island for his
Republican sympathies, while Ned, who died young, was a Labour
Councillor and Chairman of U.D.C., a position since held by his niece
Eileen (Mrs. Tom Brophy),
Idrone Park, also representing the Labour Party. His son Tom married
Mary Dufferin, Wexford, and they had two sons, John (Holy) and Tom. Tom
(Snr.) lived in Green Lane, he was gifted with his hands and set up an
Electrical/Cycle Shop in Dublin St., in partnership with Paddy Kinsella,
St. Fiac's Terrace.
John (Holy) married Marna
Murphy, daughter of the legendary Tommy Murphy, the "Boy Wonder" of
Laois and Graiguecullen in the 30's and 40's, now lives in Australia.
John was brought home from England by the County Board to play a
Leinster Championship game.
Tom (Jnr.) married Manan
Butler (Kilkenny) and has daughters, Emma, Laura, Ciara and son Padraic,
the family live in Ballinacarrig. Tom is the General Manager of The
Nationalist and Leinster Times and played football for both Eire Og and
the County team, he is also Trustee of the Eire Og Club. No. 1 was later
occupied by Jer (Wig) Butler, brother of the famous "Thumbs" whose
family reside at Staplestown Road, and whose son John "The Dew" and
Jimmy were skilled footballers with Eire Og. John's age was called into
question following an U-14 Perry Cup game v. Ballyadams in 1957 and
calling to "Thumbs" to enquire how I might get his Birth Certificate, I
was calmly told John had been born in India during the war and that the
records were destroyed during the London blitz.
No. 2: The house was later
occupied by the late Edward Bermingham, a C.I.E. official and a
prominent member of the Labour Party and Urban Council for fifteen
years. The girls are all teachers, Mary and Colette are nuns and the
boys hold senior executive positions - one in Dublin, and the other in
Canada in T. V. Joe, the elder boy was a most exciting footballer with
the O'Hanrahans and also for a period on the County team. He was very
skilled with a great turn of speed. He was with the O'Hanrahans at the
same time as Jimma Rea, "Buller" Moore, Maurice Doogue, Sean Kinsella, "Pirn"
Quinlan, Emmet Shevlin, Seamus Corcoran (now in the U.S.) and of course
Ned Begley, who also played for Laois. Many readers will remember with
nostalgia those fine players of the early 40's.
No. 3/4: Was occupied by the
Hyland family. George Hyland was for many years the father figure of the
famous Shamrocks (all whites) G.A.A. Club. He died last year in England,
R.I.P. and is buried in Baltinglass. In the 60's, Georgie would drive or
lend his van to take the complete Eire Og 7-a-side panel which included
Vinny Harvey, Martin Brophy (now Fr.), P. J. Hogan, Genie Kelly, Jimmy
Travers, Billy O'Brien, Brendan Hayden, Larry Darcy and Jim O'Brien,
(The Shamrocks amalgamated with the O'Hanrahans in the early 50's).
Nicholas Hyland, a brother of Georgie, ran a very successful poultry
business and sold eggs. His wife Bridget now lives on the Green Road.
No. 4/3: Mick Kavanagh known
as "Bones" worked for many years in the Boot Factory. Later this house -
1946-'51 - was occupied by Percy McDarby, a craftsman and hurler of note
and a very prominent Cosets official, (Vice-president of the club for
some time). He moved to St. Patrick' Ave., and two years later to
Larkfield, having been one of the founders of the Co-Op which built
those houses. His wife Kitty (Hutton) is, of course, the "Mother" of
Irish dancing in Carlow. Daughter Kathleen is on the clerical staff of
Comhlucht Siuicre Eireann and shares fully her parents' ideals.
No. 5: Benjamin Ryan - Benny,
as he was affectionately known - married Sarah Kavanagh, sister of Mick
"Bones". Their children were Willie, Lennie, Josie and Terry. Terry now
lives at Lower Staplestown Road and his daughter Caroline married John
Owens, the gifted Eire Og and County footballer and resides at Beechwood
John Geoghegan, uncle of Tom,
also lived here. An employee of U.D.C., married, Ellen Williamson,
Bridewell Lane, their son Paddy (Whack) is in England. Later they lived
at 132 J.K.L.
No. 6: Many readers will
remember Jim O'Neill. He was an artist of no mean achievement and it was
always an entertaining story Jim could pass on to young and old alike.
Indeed it was Jim's grandson, Willie Kavanagh, who heroically gave his
life in a rescue mission as a member of Carlow Fire Brigade. "Ar dheis
De go Raibh a anam.
No. 7: Anthony (Duck) Parker,
as he was known to many "Bird" friends, as one of the area's great
characters. He was an ardent Shamrocks supporter in an area of such
supporters and "carried" the jerseys for many years. His daughter
Kathleen, who married Alec Young, Potato Market, was probably the best
ballroom dancer ever in the town. Son Anthony is married to Rita Moore,
Barrack Street, and they are in England.
No. 8: Katie and Johnny
Rooney were the grandparents of Mrs. Betty Waters, who lives at
Staplestown Road. Katie was one of the last persons to be buried in the
Old Graves from the road and was one of the most expert pluckers at
Watty Kehoes, Pembroke, whose grandson Brian runs his International
Freight Company most successfully.
No. 9: Henry Harvey married
Martha Holmes who was originally from No. 1, they had five children.
Henry (Jnr.) married Harriet Ellis of Charlotte Street. Elizabeth
married Michael Dowling, Graiguecullen. Hannah (O'Connor) lived in
Dublin. Martha married Tom Shaw, Hanover Mills and later St. Killian's
Crescent, they had nine children. Tom was a prominent O'Hanrahan
official until his death and was a former player for Carlow who was
involved in the aftermath of Milford v. Graiguecullen S.F.C. Final in
1926. He composed a song about the happenings and no matter how good the
singer it is not recommended for singing everywhere in the urban areas,
was also noted for his recitation of "The Roads Around Rathoe".
married Marie Bowling (Green Lane) who shared his love of sport, and
they lived at No. 3 Pollerton Road. Mick captained the "Shammies" in
their only S.F.C. final appearance in 1934, when they were beaten by
Tinryland 1-6 to 0-6 from midfield. An ex-Army man, he played with the
O'Hanrahans who won the Championship in 1929, as did "Bolum" Hogan.
medals were on display in McEvoys (this is Cee Gees) and a member
commented: "We could have won those ourselves" meaning Bridewell
Lane, as there was only two from outside the lane on the team. Mick and
Bollum agreed never to play with O'Hanrahans again. However, a story is
told that the following year, Mick, home from the army, was met by Tom
Shaw, who more or less "interned" him at his home in Hanover Mills, to
have him for the match the next day. Mick slipped his keeper, who was a
formidable man to cross in the early hours and gathering a couple of
dogs went hunting around Gotham. 'Bolom' was prevailed upon to play and
unfortunately suffered the injury that was eventually to cost him his
life. During Mick's years in the army he was called upon to play the
last post at State funerals, he was also a member of Fianna Eireann. His
son Vinny of Eire Og and county fame, is currently trainer of the county
No. 10: Mrs. Catherine
Kavanagh, mother of "Bones" Kavanagh.
No. 11: Liz Rice, mother of
Patsa, noted Shamrock player and a "character". An ex-Army man, he was
noted for a song he usually sang on pay night during the Beet Campaign
to the air of Mary My Scots Blue girl.
- "I love a rasher, a big fat rasher,
- Fried with an onion in the pan,
- When you hear the pan frying,
- You hear poor Patsa crying,
- Mother take up the pan".
Also occupied by the Slater
Family, one of whom, Johnny, now in England, was with Eire Og in the
Club's first years, was a tough and tenacious defender, contesting the
M.F.C. and League Finals in 1956.
No. 12: Paddy Geoghegan
married Maisie Rice, Patsa's sister, their son Stan, a staunch
O'Hanrahan supporter, now lives at O'Hanrahan's Avenue.
No. 13: Peter McEvoy (Joss
Mac) a noted story-teller - not all of which were exactly true! and
father of Percy, a lorry driver with the U.D.C., who also ran a car hire
service during the war years. A gifted musician (saxophone) and Band
Leader (Black Aces) etc.
A terrific character, very
intelligent, excellent debater. His daughter Mary Thomas lives at
Hanover. Brother Golly Mac was a very good footballer with the "Shammies"
and a skilled employee of Messrs. T. Thompson,
No. 14: Jim Donoghue, a Malt
House and Sugar Company employee, and father of Mrs. Betty Kehoe, who
with husband Joe, after a long number of years in England, have returned
to live at Askea Lawns. Both are life members of Eire Og.
15: Bill Piggott a close to nature man, was into birds in a caring way,
a gardener and he always kept chickens. Father of Billy, a life-long
employee of the Sugar Company, who is now retired and living at New Oak
Estate. Madge Piggott married Bill Brennan (Barrack Street), who was at
one time a policeman in Africa. Their son "Big Neddy" lived here and
later at Staplestown Road and his son, Willie, is the noted Laois
footballer, who scored that vital goal against Carlow in the 1985
the many other people who lived in this street are Paddy Dooley (The
Kaiser), Julia Balfe, who was a governess in France, sister Lizzie, the
Walshe Family and Lil Conroy.
Source: Friends and
Neighbours by James O'Brien 1986 & Michael Purcell c2008