Last of Chapel St residents

Bartley and Hilda Feehan lived across the street from the McCanns. Batley had two sons Joe and John. She lived for her greyhounds. Joe had then left home and joined the Royal Navy. Later John also took the boat for England. He recently made his first journey home and I regret not having met him then. 

Biddy Thornton next door spent her time hanging over her half-door. By then she was a sole occupant as her son had gone to England. I remember he returned after the war with his two sons Paddy and Edmund. I think they resided in East London. Biddy lived to a ripe old age.

Tomans were next in order. I recall Jim who was much older than me and his sister May. I have a faint recollection of the mother Maggie but it was John I remember best. In later years he worked in Hale’s pub in Kildare Street. He married and lived with his wife Annie in a house above the gasyard gates.

John and Eileen Coulter lived in 12. Pat, their eldest was a fair kicker of a ball in his young days. Younger brothers were Sean, Seamus and Frankie. The father John worked for Burnhouse, a firm that recovered dead farm animals. We often would climb on the back of his lorry to view the dead animals. Eileen succumbed to a fatal illness at a young age. 

The family next door was called Ball. Edmund the father, a baker by trade, came to Newry from England. He married a local girl and settled down for a while. Two girls Bridie and Margo and a boy named paddy made up their family. After the war they upped sticks and went to Penrith in Cumberland. Even today when people talk of the old days, the Ball family is fondly remembered.

Last in the row lived maria Doran and her daughter Susie. She later married Billy Tumilty, their only issue being Mary who was tragically killed at age 4 by a lorry passing outside her home. Maria’s husband was tragically killed while hauling granite to Newry Cathedral in 1906. The First World War took three of her sons aged just 18, 21 and 23. Her daughter Maggie lived and died in the town as did her son Michael, a market trader. Another son James settled in hackney, London where he died at a ripe old age.

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