Local people put Ratheniska on map

David and Shirley Carter (site owners) with JP Fenlon and Benny Greene, (Laois Ploughing) at Ratheniska Hall for the first organising meeting for the National Ploughing Championships 2013 which are being held at Ratheniska, Stradbally, Co Laois, 24 - 26 September.Picture: Alf Harvey/HRPhoto.ie No reproduction fee.
As this year’s hosts of the All-Ireland Ploughing Championships, Portlaoise and District Ploughing Club are looking forward to welcoming people from all over the country to Ratheniska.

As this year’s hosts of the All-Ireland Ploughing Championships, Portlaoise and District Ploughing Club are looking forward to welcoming people from all over the country to Ratheniska.

“We’re delighted to be the host club this year. It’s really going to put Laois ploughing on the map,” club member Brendan Greene said.

He will be taking part in the Under 28 senior class for the second time.

“I am up against tough competition from Kieran Coakley from Cork and Sean Treacy from Carlow whose father represented Ireland in the World Ploughing Championships recently.

“We’re always neck in neck but I’m looking forward to taking him on.”

Portlaoise and District Ploughing Club invited the National Ploughing Association to look at the area, after last year’s championships in New Ross.

“The NPA were in a bit of a dilema after last year’s championships in New Ross. The came out to Ratheniska and were very impressed with the site.”

Since then, the Portlaoise club have been liasing between the site owners and the NPA, to ensure that everything runs smoothly.

“There are more farmers than ever before involved this year. The NPA needed 600-700acres depending on the weather, so there is up to 20 farmers involved this year,” Brendan said.

Brendan expressed his thanks to Laois Ploughing for their help this year and the Carter family and surrounding land owners for their help and co-operation to date.

“Hopefully this year will be a success and we can get it back again next year.”