In Car­rick-on-Suir

Irish Independent - Farming - - RINGSIDE EXTRA -

THE MART in Car­rick-on-Suir opened its gates for the first time in De­cem­ber 1955 and has main­tained an un­bro­ken ser­vice to the farm­ing com­mu­ni­ties of Water­ford, Tip­per­ary and Kilkenny since.

It’s a con­sid­er­able record and one which auc­tion­eer John Cur­ran is par­tic­u­larly proud of. “Sixty two years is a fair stretch, the long­est of any mart in the coun­try,” he beams. “We’ve worked hard but we’ve sur­vived be­cause of the loy­alty of our cus­tomers.”

Apart from the ob­vi­ous busi­ness ben­e­fits that a mart brings to the town, John also stresses the im­por­tance of the mart as a fo­cal and so­cial point for those in­volved in farm­ing. “Not ev­ery­one goes to the pub,” he com­ments.

“I re­mem­ber af­ter the last foot-and-mouth disease out­break, the first Fri­day we were back I saw more hand­shak­ing and smil­ing than you’d get at a wed­ding. Lads were de­lighted to be back amongst their own.” On mart day the sil­ver-grey hold­ing pens, walk­ways and sales rings are trans­formed.

First to ar­rive is of­fice head Mau­reen Fin­u­cane and her team of ad­min­is­tra­tors. Next in are the yard men — the ma­jor­ity of them na­tives of the town — and then grad­u­ally the trucks, trail­ers and jeeps ar­rive.

The pens fill. Knots of buy­ers and sell­ers con­gre­gate, con­ver­sa­tions are had, well-trained minds as­sess the prospects. Po­si­tions next to the ring­side rail fill first, then the am­phithe­atre of seats. The auc­tion­eer and his teller set­tle them­selves on the ros­trum.

An­other sale is about to com­mence at Car­rick-onSuir’s Live­stock Sales yard — 62 years and count­ing.


This Here­ford Cross which weighed 230kg sold for €520; (be­low) cat­tle be­ing un­loaded at the mart (above) Two Li­mousin Cross weigh­ing 305kg sold for €755; (left) Mossie Mur­phy and John Walker get a bird’s-eye view

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