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Benefit night brings in sporting memorabilia


UP FOR GRABSA signed Republic of Ireland soccer jersey are among the items that will be auctioned at a Benefit Night in Westport next month.

Ger Flanagan

SOME of the most sought after and collectable sporting memorabilia will be up for auction in the Castlecourt Hotel, Westport on Friday, October 5 at the upcoming JMN Benefit Night.
Signed jerseys from Mayo GAA, Connacht Rugby, the Republic of Ireland soccer team, Colm ‘The Gooch’ Cooper and much, much more will be going under the hammer, with all funds raised going to the family of the late James McNally of Cogaula, Westport and late of Derryloughan, who tragically passed away last March.
Friends and family have come on board to organise a fun-filled evening to remember James who, according to Paul Durcan, one of the Organising Committee, had such a profound impact on their lives.
“We decided to organise this night as a way of remembering James, who passed away suddenly back in March, 10 days before his 39th birthday,” Paul Durcan told The Mayo News last week. “It’s also going to be a fundraiser for his wife, Anna-Marie Napier of Cogaula, and their three daughters, all of whom are under 10 years of age.
“The money raised will go to finishing the family home  and Anna-Marie has asked the committee that most of it will go into Trust Funds to pay for their daughters’ future education.”
Two tickets to the Premiership clash of Man Utd and Chelsea, in the third last game of the season, a €500 Corrib Oil-sponsored voucher and a top quality German made ‘Dino Car’ are also up for grabs in the glittering auction.
There will also be a raffle with up to 30 spot prizes sponsored by local businesses, live music by X-Men and a disco until late is guaranteed to keep everyone entertained on the night.
“It promises to be a fun night and a great way of remembering James,” added Paul Durcan. “Two well-known local men, Joe Ring and Seán Joyce, will be the MC and Auctioneer – two men that are known for great entertainment and you definitely won’t want to miss these two in action.”
James McNally was known locally as a devout family man and for his love of sport, in particular Liverpool, Mayo GAA and Burrishoole GAA. And he loved nothing more than watching his club-mate, Jason Doherty, wearing the Green and Red of Mayo.
Since coming up with the idea for the fundraising event, the Organising Committee and family members have said the support as been overwhelming.
“Both families, the McNallys and Napiers, as well as us in the Committee, can’t thank people enough for the help and support,” said Mr Durcan. “Local businesses have been so generous, we have nearly too many spot prizes at this stage that we’re asking can they make a donation instead, but either way they will be all thanked on our Facebook page, JMN Benefit Night.
“The Castlecourt [Hotel] have provided us the venue free of charge and there will be tickets available on the door on the night. We’ve been trying to get around locally, but unfortunately haven’t ventured to Murrisk, Lecanvey or Louisburgh yet, but you can get tickets in ‘The Heeler Shoe Repair’ and ‘Fishing Tackle’ on Market Lane, Heaney’s Pharmacy on Bridge Street and Corrib Oil, to name just a few.
“Doors open at 9pm and the auction starts at 11pm sharp, so get your dancing shoes ready for a fun-filled night.”

For further information or for tickets, priced at €10, contact Paul on 087 9814673, Cepta on 086 1626357, or Padraic O’Malley at 086 8331469. All donations can be accepted to Ulster Bank, Westport. IBAN: IE03ULSB98643011956620; BIC: ULSBIE2D.