A pub in the midlands town of Mullingar is where a group of bachelors meet for the craic, enjoy each other's company and raise funds for charity.
Con’s Pub in Mullingar, county Westmeath, is the gathering place and the watering hole of a unique social club, the Mullingar Bachelors.
Founding member Con Gilsenan explains the club’s origins. He got the idea while on holidays with friends in 1970. Their holiday rep had a brother who was a member of the Newry Bachelors Club, and Con thought that a similar idea would work in Mullingar. On their return home, he got some of his acquaintances together to form a club.
1981 was International Year of Disabled People, and Con, along with his fellow bachelors, decided to recruit more men to their ranks, with the aim of devoting some of their spare time to the needs of others. The Mullingar Bachelors Club formally came into existence on 1 January 1981.
Membership is open to all men who are not married, and an inclusive atmosphere prevails, as Con explains,
We’re non-political, non-sectarian...
The Bachelors organise around five or six charity fundraising events per year and have raised £30,000 to date.
Some of their members have fallen by the wayside and committed themselves to matrimony. John O’Toole is one such offender. But this strengthens the reserve of existing, committed bachelors, who do not seem averse to female company, with one member commenting,
We’re going to be in Mullingar, we’ll keep the flag flying, and plenty of action... we like the ladies, we’d be lost without them.
This episode of 'Out And About' was broadcast on 19 May 1987. The presenters were Liam Ó Murchú and Ingrid Miley.
‘Out and About’ was a magazine style programme which promised to capture provincial Ireland’s summertime revels, visiting twenty towns around the country. Running from May to August 1987 and for one season only, it was part of RTÉ Television’s 25th birthday celebrations. Broadcast twice weekly, on Tuesdays and Thursdays, it aimed to capture each town’s individual character and atmosphere. ‘Out and About’ was presented by Thelma Mansfield, Liam Ó Murchú, and Ingrid Miley.
(RTÉ Guide 1 May 1987).