04 December-Paul McGrath

Paul McGrath is widely regarded as one of the greatest footballers ever to play for the Republic of Ireland. He spent most of his career playing with clubs in the English Premier League and played 83 times for his country. A confident and decisive tackler McGrath is regarded as an outstanding football talent and a great athlete whose preferred playing position was centre back. During his career he continued to play despite having alcohol problems and serious knee injuries which required surgery on several occasions.

Paul McGrath was born in Ealing, London on December 4th 1959. He showed exceptional talent as a footballer from an early age and began his full-time football career with St Patrick’s Athletic in Dublin in 1981. He spent one season with St Patrick’s before moving to England where he joined the Manchester United Club. Over a period of seven seasons McGrath appeared 163 times for the club and scored 12 goals. He won an FA cup medal with Manchester United in 1985.

McGrath moved to the Birmingham club, Aston Villa, in 1989. Again over seven seasons he made 252 appearances and scored 9 goals. He was a member of the team in the club’s victory over Manchester United in the League Cup final in 1994. McGrath left Aston Villa in 1996 and went on to play briefly with Derby County and Sheffield United. He played the final game of his club career, just a month before his 39th birthday, with Ipswich Town on November 9th 1997.

Paul McGrath played his first game for Ireland in a 1985 friendly against Italy at Dalymount Park. He would go on to play for Ireland on 83 occasions and score 8 goals. His appearances included UEFA Euro 1998, FIFA World Cup 1990 in Italy and again in the FIFA World Cup 1994 in the USA. He played his final international for Ireland against Wales in 1997 after which he stated: ‘The thought of retirement is a bit scary, soccer has been my life’. A Testimonial match for Paul McGrath was held in Lansdowne Road in May 1998. Over 37,000 fans attended what was an emotional occasion, in which McGrath made an appearance.

Paul McGrath, Irish former professional footballer, was born in the year 1959 On This Day.

Villa Park Dressing room photo

Villa Park dressing room (1), September 1995 by Ben Sutherland on 1995-09-01 00:00:00

Photo by Ben Sutherland

Champions of England 1999 by seanog_72 on 2008-10-18 01:26:07

28 November-Stephen Roche

Stephen Roche is a former champion road racing cyclist who is a native of Dublin, Ireland. He was the first Irishman to win the Tour de France. During his 13 year professional career he had a litany of successes and was the winner of the triple crown of victories in 1987. In that year Roche won the Tour de France, the Giro D’Italia and the World road race Championship in Villach, Austria.

Stephen Roche was born in Dundrum Co Dublin in 1959. He was the youngest ever winner of Rás Tailteann in 1979. In 1980 he represented Ireland at the Olympic Games in Moscow. In 1981 Roche turned professional and had ten victories in his first year. Despite injury he continued to win races culminating in his Triple Crown of victories in 1987. He continued to race until his retirement in 1993.

Stephen Roche, former champion road racing cyclist who became the first Irishman to win the Tour de France was born in Dublin in the year 1959 On This Day.

Stephen Roche

10 October-Kirsty MacColl

Kirsty MacColl, who recorded the Christmas song Fairytale of New York with Shane MacGowan and the Pogues, was a native of Croydon, England. Fairytale of New York was written by Shane MacGowan and Jem Finer. The song was first released in November 1987. Often referred to as the best Christmas song of all time Fairytale of New York achieved one million sales in 2013.

Kirsty Anna MacColl was born in Croydon, Surrey, England in 1959. She was the daughter of folk singer Ewan MacColl. Kirsty and her brother were raised by their mother Jean in Croydon where she attended school. As a teenager she performed for a short time with the band Drug Addix.

She left the band to begin her solo career and had a hit in 1981 with ‘There’s a Guy Works Down the Chip Shop Swears He’s Elvis’. During the 1980’s and 1990’s she recorded several hit pop records. She also performed on recordings by other artists including The Smiths, Alison Moyet, The Pogues and Anni-Frid Lyngstad of ABBA.

On December 18th 2000 Kirsty MacColl was on holiday in Cozumel, Mexico. She was diving with her two sons in a designated diving area, which boats were restricted from entering. However a speedboat entered the area. MacColl managed to save her two sons but she was hit by the boat and killed instantly.

Kirsty MacColl, singer, songwriter and entertainer, was born in Croydon, England in the year 1959 On This Day.

Kirsty MacColl photo

Photo by bellefox rendezvous

 

 

09 March-Barbie

Barbie is a fashion doll created by business woman, Ruth Handler. It is manufactured by the American multinational toy manufacturing company, Mattel. Mattel was founded by Ruth Handler and her husband Harold “Matt” Matson in 1942. Mattel has its headquarters in El Segundo, California, U.S.A.

Ruth Handler had observed her daughter playing with paper dolls. She was inspired to create Barbie which she based on the German doll, Bild Lilli. Barbie is 30cm (11.5 in) tall. She has been described as a Teen-Age Fashion Model for children to play with. She has a boyfriend called Ken and several friends. She also has a wide range of accessories, clothes and over 40 pets.

Barbie, a Teen-Age Fashion Model for children to play with, made its debut at the American International Toy Fair in New York in the year 1959 On This Day.

Barbie

Barbie canopy bed

 

 

15 June-Tullow Railway

Tullow is a town with a population of around 3,000 on the River Slaney in Co Carlow, Ireland. Located in the east of the county it is a market town with a growing population. The town was at one time connected to the Irish railway network on a branch line through Baltinglass in Co Wicklow from Sallins in Co Kildare. The railway station at Tullow was closed in 1959.

The first train from Dublin arrived at Carlow town railway station on August 4th 1846. Over the following decades the rail network in County Carlow was gradually expanded. The railway was extended southwards and stations were opened in Bagenalstown in 1848 and Borris in 1858.

Over the following years various routes for a railway line to Tullow were considered. The town was eventually connected to the rail network when the railway line was extended from Baltinglass to Tullow. The line ran along the valley of the River Slaney. Tullow railway station opened on June 1st 1886. There was an intermediate stop at Rathvilly.

By the late 1800’s there were seven railway stations in County Carlow. However, as road transport developed, passenger numbers and goods using the railways began to decline and railway stations were closed down. The railway station at Tullow was shut down in June 1959 and some of the other railway stations in Carlow were subsequently closed. Today there are just two railway stations in County Carlow, Carlow town and Muine Bheag.

Tullow railway station was shut down in the year 1959 On This Day.

Image from page 240 of “A pictorial and descriptive guide to Dublin and the Wicklow tours ..” (1919)