10 Years Ago
April 18 2002
McGuinness gets Queen
EDUCATION Minister and Mid-Ulster MP Martin McGuinness has been invited to the garden party at Loughry College, Cookstown, next month to mark the Queen’s Jubilee.
But a spokesperson for the Sinn Fein Minister declined to say whether Mr McGuinness would be at the event which will be attended by the Queen and Prince Philip.
Business in Magherafelt and Maghera received a boost. A new shopping development at the Rainey Street car park was expected to create up to 40 jobs, while 13 jobs were to be created at the Maghera business park with the launch of new office/workspace units.
Local man Alastair Rowan has been appointed the first ever principal of the new post primary integrated school, Sperrin College in Magherafelt.
Mid-Ulster DUP Assemblyman William McCrea has given a cautious welcome to news that a possible reprieve for Castledawson police station could be on the way.
Tyrone turned in an awesome display at Brewster Park to book their place in an all-Ulster Allianz National Football League final against Ulster rivals Cavan.
A shell-shocked Moyola Park must pick themselves up – and quickly – if they are to wrestle the Division Two league title away from Dundela.
Deaths: April 13 – Winifred Selena McGarry (nee Wright), late of Fountain Road, Cookstown; Apri 13 – William L. McGlaughlin, formerly of Ballygroogan, Cookstown; April 9 – Agnes McMullan, Ballybollen Road.
25 Years Ago
April 23 1987
Foreman gunned down
THE man murdered at his home was the second employee of a Magherafelt building firm to be gunned down by terrorists within six months.
Harry Henry, a 52-year-old foreman, of Ballymulligan Road, Loup, worked for his brother, Jim Henry, whose 23-year-old store manager, Kenneth Johnston, was gunned down by IRA terrorists while sitting in his employer’s car in Magherafelt in October last.
The Northern Health Board has responded to criticism resulting from the recent two-day closure of the A&E unit at the Mid-Ulster Hospital, Magherafelt. The Board’s general manager, Douglas Smyth, said the temporary closure was caused by a shortage of medical staff. Three junior medical posts at the hospital have been vacant since February.
About three dozen DUP councillors from throughout the Province defied the new Public Order laws in Cookstown. Party leader the Rev Ian Paisley and his deputy Peter Robinson headed an impromptu march through the town without giving the required notice to the RUC.
Twin sisters Martha Hassan and Mary Hudson were guests of honour at a presentation retirement dinner dance held in the Hanover House, Coagh, and family friends, colleagues and staff of Castledawson Shirt Co. Ltd, were present to mark their retirement from the shirt industry.
Coleraine striker Raymond McCoy (23), from Cookstown, has been named as Ulster Footballer of the Year, 24 hours after being selected for the second time in Northern Ireland’s squad for the European championship game against Yugoslavia at Windsor Park.
Deaths: April 10 – Mabel Hunter, Milburn Crescent, Cookstown; April 11 – Alexander (Alex) Moran, Fairhill Home, Moneymore; April 10 – Ted Rutledge, formerly of Cookstown.
50 Years Ago
April 21 1962
THE completion of the new Head Post Office in Cookstown has been responsible for drawing many admiring glances in that direction, and the appearance last weekend of a second telephone kiosk in that region of the town caused quite a lot of excitement, as those living and working in the town rejoiced at the prospect of no more queuing to make a call.
In a bid to arrest the rapid upward trend of tooth decay, children in County Derry, who take school meals, may soon be served with half an apple instead of the normal sweet course, the Education Committee heard.
Mr George Ferguson, JP, made the first purchase from Miss Quinn, a senior staff official, at the opening of Cookstown’s new £37,500 Post Office at James Street.
Mr George Forrest, MP for Mid-Ulster at Westminster, said he was strongly opposed to Britain entering the European Common Market. He said it would prove disastrous to the small farmer.
Fire destroyed the Third Presbyterian Church, Portglenone, early on Sunday morning. All that remains of the building, which had accommodation for about 500, are the four walls and the church tower.
Cookstown’s Town dump is once again the object of some well justified criticism by residents in the vicinity who complain about the obnoxious odour which comes from the dump and is particularly noticeable during the evening.
Deaths: April 14 – Catherine Josephine Dibble (nee Dougle), England (interred Ardtrea Churchyard); April 18 – Mary J. Heaney (Spirit Merchant), William Street, Cookstown; April 12 – William John Murphy, Carndaisy, Moneymore; April 18 – William Sloan, Lawford Street, Moneymore; April 12 – Agnes Taylor, Ballymacpherson, Desertmartin (late of Bellshill, Lanarkshire, Scotland); April 11 – Samuel David Wright, Warren Road, Donaghadee, Portavoe.
75 Years Ago
April 17 1937
ROBERT Thomas Ferguson, farmer, of Cratley, Stewartstown, aged 50, died in the County Hospital, Omagh, as a result of injuries received when his horse ran away while he was returning from Cookstown with a fowl-house on a horse drawn cart.
Mr James Woods, who had been rural postman for Castledawson for over 40 years, retired on his reaching the age limit, and he was presented with the Imperial Service Medal by Mr Ardern, Postmaster-Surveyor, of Belfast.
Miss Helen Gamble, daughter of Mr Wilson Gamble, JP, of Magherafelt, and W.R. Fiddis, son of Mr W.R. Fiddis, PTE, of Magherafelt, were the two pupils nominated at the Rainey Endowed School to attend the Coronation Rally and Empire Services for Youth in London in May. Gerald Taylor, son of Mr William Taylor, of Magherafelt, was the nominee of the Technical School for the same occasion.
The best cow at Moneymore Milk Recording Association belonged to Mr W.J. Gray, of the Priory Farm, Tullyhogue. She yielded 1,225 gallons of milk and 469lbs of butter fat in the year.
Cookstown Quarter Sessions, which was held during the week, did not finish until after 3pm on Saturday, something which had not happened for seven or eight years, most of the cases being normally disposed of by Friday evening.
The contract for a new Employment Exchange at Fair Hill Road, Cookstown, was secured by Messrs Benson Bros, contractors, Cookstown.
Dungannon Board of Guardians approved plans for the erection of the proposed new Dungannon Fever Hospital at an estimated cost of £9,500.
The Rt Hon H.M. Pollock, DL, MP, Minister of Finance for Northern Ireland, died at his residence, Windsor Avenue, Belfast, on April 15.
Deaths: April 5 – Lena Long, Sherrygroom, Dungannon; April 7 – Isabella Nobbs, Toberlane, Cookstown; April 8 – Robert Kennedy, Bethany Street, Ballyhackamore, Belfast and formerly of Ballyeglish, Moneymore; April 10 – Sarah Jane Wilson, Smith Street, Moneymore; April 12 – Robert Thomas Ferguson, Cratley, Stewartstown (the result of an accident); April 13 – Barry Meglaughlin, MBE, Belfast, First Taxing Master of the High Courts of Justice, Northern Ireland.
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