1963: Is the ‘Twist’ a teen health hazard?

Management and staff of the Great Northern Railway Station, Cookstown, in 1940.
Management and staff of the Great Northern Railway Station, Cookstown, in 1940.
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10 Years Ago

March 13 2003

Sheep attacks

A SHEEP farmer is counting the cost after he lost 13 of his flock in two savage attacks by dogs. Nine sheep – some of them in-lamb ewes – were killed by the dogs and four more died as result of their injuries in the attacks at Ballygruby between The Loup and Moneymore.

A shortage of firefighters could severely undermine the service in Magherafelt, it emerged. Senior divisional officer Eoin Doyle said there had been no response from the public for recent vacancies at Maghera and Magherafelt.

Cookstown will be a sea of colour on Monday when the town will host one of the country’s major St Patrick’s Day demonstrations.

About 90 people attended a drugs awareness seminar for parents in Magherafelt. The event was the latest in a series of road shows by the the North Eastern Education and Library Board aimed at giving parents information on the risks facing their children.

The development of a £1.9 million sports facility for Mid-Ulster at Loughry is due to start at the end of the month.


Excitement was mounting ahead of the MacRory Cup final at Casement Park which brought together local sides St Mary’s Grammar, Magherafelt and St Patrick’s College, Maghera.

25 Years Ago

March 17, 1988

Burglary alert

HOUSEHOLDERS were warned to be on their guard following a spate of burglaries in the Cookstown area.

A St Patrick’s Day demonstration by the Ancient Order of Hibernian’s was taking place in Rasharkin, Co. Antrim.

South Derry Executive of the SDLP condemned the Public Prosecution Service for not taking action against loyalists who blocked roads in the Magherafelt district in March 1986.

Cookstown Pioneer Centre celebrated its Golden Jubilee. It was formed by the late Canon Charles Hurson, PP of Cookstown, in February 1938, and the original centre was entirely male-dominated.

For the first time ever a county match was staged at Fr Connolly Park, Eglish, but unfortunately for the local Tyrone supporters’ this Dr McKenna Cup defeat was their second at the hands of Antrim in the space of two weeks.

Deaths: March 11, Florence Patricia Atkinson, Moneymore Road, Magherafelt; March 12, Mamie Courtney (nee Wright), Florida; March 7, Annie Curran, Woodland Grove, Antrim (formerly Cookstown); March 5, Annie Noreen (Nora) McMillan, Magherafelt Road, Castledawson; March 14, Thomas James Warwick, Cookstown.

50 Years Ago

March 16 1963

Rates burden

A MOTION that Cookstown Ratepayers’ Association and Cookstown Urban Council should get together over the burden of continual increase in the rates was passed at a meeting of the Association.

Is the “Twist” a hazard to health? This question was posed by Mr R.A. Brown when he told the members of County Derry Health Committee that, recently, he had attended a dance at which he had witnessed a number of teenagers “doing the Twist.”

After 56 years with the one firm a South Derry lorry driver has retired – at the second attempt! George Richardson (74), of Grove Terrace, Maghera, had become so attached to his job that he found it hard to give up the wheel. He retired two years ago but became so restless that he returned to drive for Messrs Alexander Scott and Sons at Main Street, Maghera.

The Northern Ireland Hospitals’ Authority has turned down the offer of Dungannon Rotary Club to provide ward phones on trollies in the new 150-bed unit at South Tyrone Hospital.

More than 15,000 people were expected to attend the St Patrick’s Day AOH demonstration in Magherafelt.

Deaths: March 8, Hugh Currie, Sandy Row, Drapersfield; March 13, Maud Cowan Glasgow, Molesworth Road, Cookstown; March 13, Commander Nathaniel Greer Leeper, RN (retired), Eastbourne, Sussex (formerly Cookstown); March 12, Elizabeth Eleanor Mullan, Strathmullan House, Dungannon; February 28, Rebecca McKee, Paynton, Sack., Canada (formerly of Drumnacross, Cookstown); March 9, William Arthur Orr, Brackaville House, Coalisland; March 13, Eliza Parke, Drumearn, Cookstown; March 5, Victoria Regina Poole, Alberta House, Tobermore.

75 Years Ago

March 12 1938

Electric light for Draperstown

THE installation of the new electric lighting system in Draperstown had been completed and the system was proving a great success especially for business people. The work had been successfully carried out under the supervision of Mr Ernest Benson, the foreman in charge.

Mr Robert McCormick, of Belfast, who had been a teacher in Newtownards Technical School, was unanimously appointed Principal of Magherafelt Technical School and Regional Officer.

Three clerical members of Dungannon Regional Committee resigned. They were Rev S.W. Thompson, BA, Rev Precentor McEndoo, MA, and Rev H.E. Hardy, MA.

Amongst those present at a meeting of the Cookstown Coal Club Committee were Rev A. Stanley Hill, BA, (chairman), Mrs Entrican and Mr Samuel McKinney, UDC, and Thomas Rea.

Deaths: March 3, James Crawford, Ballymurphy, Ardboe; March 6, Elizabeth Bell, Pine Avenue, Drumconvis, Coagh; March 6, Thomas Crooks, Union Street, Cookstown; March 6, Teresa Cushnahan, Main Street, Maghera; March 7, Felix Laverty, Elagh, Stewartstown; March 7, Sarah Timoney, Drapertown; March 10, Thomas Hilman, Tobermore.

100 Years Ago

March 15 1913

Fair rents

AT a land court in Dungannon before Mr E. R. Wade (chairman), and Mr R. J. Craig, there was a long list of applications to have fair rents fixed.

The area of charge for the new waterworks at Pomeroy (replacing the fire-clay pipes with iron pipes) was the chief subject of discussion at Cookstown Rural Council.

Deaths: Dr Bradley, Gortin; Thomas W. Loughran, Belfast, formerly of Kinnigillian; William Morgan, Cookstown.

OLD photographs are always welcome, contact Stanley Campbell at MAIL’s Magherafelt office, 14 Rainey Street, telephone 028 796 31780 or email stanley.campbell@jpress.co.uk