Issue 158

With a tentative touch of Spring in the air and the evenings lengthening by the day, we’re all hoping that the worst of the Winter is behind us and we’re not going to be caught out by an unexpected sudden sharp shock in the weeks ahead.
From art and drama to fundraising and football, this week’s edition is packed with photos and stories of events from throughout the district.
For our Big Interview we travelled to Fintona to meet up with Sean McQuaid whose RoadieTV venture has given bands, both local and national, a perfect platform to showcase their music. As well as local groups like The Banjacks, Don’t Shoot and Knotty Pine, Sean’s Facebook page also features groups like The Druids, The Navvies and the Unholy Gospel Band.
The local council held their inaugural Community Recognition evening in the Silverbirch Hotel recently to recognise volunteers from groups within the district who have contributed time and skills to the community.
We also have details of the nine nights of drama coming up at the Newtownstewart Drama Festival as they prepare to lift the curtain on this year’s event.
Pat has also been out and about photographing Recarson Primary School’s celebrations after receiving a big payout from the Big Lottery fund.
Paddy Hunter, meanwhile, speaks to tennis star and Holy Family teacher Donna McSorley about her preparations ahead of flying to Cape Town, South Africa where she is scheduled to participate in the ITF young seniors world championships.
We were also there to capture the runners in this year’s annual CBS 10k and 5k charity fundraiser which drew over 300 runners and also Omagh Wheelers as members took part in the annual Valentine’s Cycle.
In our packed photo pages we cover the glitz and glam of Omagh High School’s annual formal. Coincidentally, the event was one of the first to come under new laws restricting celebrations to a 9.30pm deadline.
Meanwhile, the senior citizens were in celebratory mood at the Hospital Road Community Centre, while the Chinese New Year was launched at South West College.
There are also photos from this year’s Jazz Festival at the Strule Arts Centre and the library which was voted a huge success by all accounts. And we were there to capture last week’s launch of artist Olwyn Colgan’s exhibition in the Strule Arts Centre.
Fundraisers were out in force at a dance and raffle in the Valley Hotel in Fivemiletown to raise funds for Marie Cutie and Cancer Research. And Beragh Red Knights were celebrating the end of another hugely successful year for the club

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Issue 156

ot157A lighter read with Omagh Today….
With most of what you read at present focusing on the more serious issues of Brexit, Trump and the RHI debacle, it’s up to Omagh Today to keep you abreast of the more light-hearted happenings around the district.
This week, our Big Interview is rather different from the norm. It features an interview conducted with the late Any Ward who reflects on her war-time experiences and working as a ‘secret typist’ with Lord Louis Mountbatten. Mrs Ward, who passed away earlier this month, spoke of her years of service as a member of the WAAF and time spent in India and Singapore. Continue reading

Issue 155 – Happy New Year!

ot155Hello 2017!
Well here we are – we missed all the Christmas and New Year madness and we’ve skipped straight to mid-January! Hopefully you’ve all recovered from the excesses of the festive season and stepped into a brand new year full of motivation to make it a great one.
One local face who’d determined to make this year count is musician Lee Matthews. You might not realize until you’ve read his story but Lee’s had a few near misses with superstardom in his time and lady luck hasn’t always smiled on him – but you can’t keep a good man down and with talent and hard work he’s hoping 2017 will be his year! Continue reading

Issue 154!

ot154Ho ho ho…Merry Christmas!
OK so not for another ten days, but since this is our last edition before Christmas we couldn’t miss the opportunity to send each and every one of our readers our best wishes for a safe, happy and peaceful Christmas and New Year. Omagh Today wouldn’t be what it is without you and we thank you for your support throughout the year!
As you might guess this issue takes on a very festive feel and we kick things off with a look at the good old days when thousands of turkeys used to be plucked and prepared for the Christmas table at premises on John Street – a huge source of seasonal employment and with many a fascinating story behind the old pictures that a local historian has unearthed. Continue reading

Happy birthday Omagh Today – Issue 153!

ot153Happy birthday to us!!
It’s the first of December – exactly six years since the very first copies of this little magazine first appeared on shelves around the Omagh district – and what a ride it has been! We would like to take this opportunity to thank each and every person that has and continues to make it possible for us to do what we do – our wonderful contributors, the amazing people who tell us their stories and invite us to photograph their events, the retailers who sell the mag, our advertisers, our printers at Ecclesville – and of course you, our fabulous readers!
Backs to this issue then and we’re bringing you an inspiring story of courage in the face of devastating illness. When Megan Boyd from Pomeroy was only 21 she was told she had a dangerous form of leukaemia – out of a clear blue sky her life was turned upside down and indeed hung in the balance until a selfless bone marrow donor saved her. Read her amazing story inside! Continue reading