Committee members Mary Crowley, Brenda O’Malley, Ann Lovely, Geraldine Lynch, Rose Keogh, Geraldine Cleary, Mai McLoughlin and Marie Goonery (chairperson).

Twenty-five years of memories at Taughmon-Turin

One day they may be standing in rows doing the side-close-side step; another day it may be the sound of clicking knitting needles that provides the background sounds.

There’s no end to the variety of activities the members of the Taughmon and Turin Women’s Group organise for themselves – and evidence that the formula works lies in the fact that this month, the group celebrated the 25th anniversary of their foundation.

Largely, the membership comes from the Taughmon, Turin and Clonkill areas, but some members, like Marie Goonery, are from Mullingar, or maybe from Killucan.

“I wasn’t in it from the start, but I’ve been going out for about six years,” says Marie, explaining that when the group was set was set up, it was at a time when there wasn’t a lot of opportunity in that area for women to get together and participate in activities in their own locality.

Now, the group have their own meeting room at the GAA clubhouse in Clonkill, and while meetings are held monthly, the activities are held weekly, with line-dancing on the current weekly agenda, and knitting of hats for the Christmas Shoebox appeal occupying another slot on the weekly calendar, while next month will see the launch of another six-week run of the Go For Life keep-fit programme.

There are around 80 members: “But they wouldn’t all attend at the same time,” says Marie, explaining that typically, around a quarter of the members would attend the monthly meetings, which are on the first Monday.

There’s plenty of variety in the activities: sometimes they will have a speaker in – the topics can be anything from health to beauty to Christmas flower arranging. Craft-related speakers and classes are always popular.

While the group members have their own room, that was never going to be big enough for the 25th anniversary celebration, and for that September 16 event, they used a larger room at the centre.

Because it was a special occasion, members decorated the room, and brought in their own china tea-sets, and the food was provided by an outside caterer, with entertainment provided by musicians Eamon and Sean McCormack.

It was a lovely afternoon – and with such enthusiastic participation, the future of the group looks well assured.