The Irish Press

Ní sheasaíonn sac folamh.

(An empty sack does not stand.)

November 2023


It’s that time of year! Time to celebrate the end of another year, and the arrival of Summer.

We have our annual 3 Xmas Events, as usual.

Sunday 3 December we will get our Elders together for one of the nicest Afternoon Teas you will find, from 3.00pm.

Saturday 9 December the “Adults” let their hair (or whatever’s left of it!) down and party with Shindig. 7.30pm ‘til late.

Sunday 17 December, the Kids get to greet Santa Claus IN PERSON! You will need to register your youngsters so watch out for the details.


Emma & Aislinn aim to get our feet twinkling and toes tapping. This Saturday, 18 November at the Club.

Remember they are dancers of renown in NZ Irish dancing circles!

We will start about 7.00pm, so you can bring your youngsters, both young and old!

It’s old-fashioned, it’s energetic, it’s great fun, it’s a CEILI!. And you can have a drink before, during, and after, if you’ve a mind to.


The folks at the GFHA have a busy couple of months coming up, so there’s plenty to get along to!

Their Pre-Christmas Social Competition has been running since 1 October, and the Finals are at Ian Galloway Park, Curtis Street, Northland on Saturday 2 December.

For those going to be enjoying the beautiful Wellington Summer, get yourself along to the GFHA Beach Tournament, at Oriental Bay on 13 January.

Looking a little further ahead, they have organised a Golf Day for Saturday, 17 February at Manor Park. Contact if you want to enter.

They have a “Club Day Out” planned for Saturday 4 March. It involves a visit to Le Gra Vineyard. Should be fun.

Next year’s NZ Championships are being held in Queenstown over the weekend of 16-17 March. So if you plan to be in that part of the country at that date, set aside some time to go and watch the competition.


St Patrick’s Day this year was a Friday, which means next year it should be a Saturday, right? Wrong!

2024 is a Leap Year, and St Patrick’s Day is a SUNDAY!

The last time that occurred was 2019, and we had a bumper turnout, with lots of families spending at least part of the afternoon at the Club. And many of those groups took up station under canopies outside in the carpark.

I know it seems a LOOOONG time away, but I’d encourage you to think ahead, and mark your nice new 2024 Calendar with a ring around the date!


The Tara Trust is running a “Christmas Raffle”. The prize is a very tempting $5,000 Prezzy Card. Tickets cost $100 each.

The winner will be drawn on Friday 15 December, at the Auckland Irish Society’s Wrap Party.

To enter, deposit your $100 into ACC # 38-9010-0076456-00, & cite your Full Name as the Reference & for the Code use your Mobile Number.


Do you have a keyboard unused and gathering dust? I urge you to consider donating it to a worthy cause. I have received the following request from Vicky Ferguson:

“I teach piano at secondary schools within the Hutt region and currently have a number of students who have been learning with me for years, but due to financial circumstances at home have never had an instrument to practice on at home. These students are passionate, keen and intelligent musicians. They have achieved quite incredible results already despite only being able to practice at school. Come the school holidays they won’t be able to practice at all, which puts them at a huge disadvantage compared to those who have access to an instrument at home.

I would like to create a library of reasonable quality instruments which can be loaned to students for their time at school, and reused by others in need.

  • Keyboards would need to be a minimum of 61 keys, and have weighted keys.
  • Keyboard stands and stools will also be gratefully received.

If you have something to donate then I’d love to hear from you!

Victoria Ferguson


Our next screening will be Love & Friendship (2016), which stars Kate Beckinsale, Chloë Sevigny, and Xavier Samuel.

Lady Susan Vernon takes up temporary residence at her in-laws' estate and, while there, is determined to be a matchmaker for her daughter Frederica -- and herself too, naturally.

The next screening will be on Thursday 23 November at 7.30pm. As usual the Bar will be open, there is no cover charge, and all members and their guests are welcome.


Reading is an exercise in empathy; an exercise in walking in someone else’s shoes for a while.” - Malorie Blackman

The Book Club is holding its next meeting on Thursday 8 December, from 7.30 pm. Their selection is any work by Agatha Christie. If you’re interested in joining the group, or maybe starting your own, get a copy of the book to read, and just turn up to their session.


Local Musician and Teacher Jhan Lindsay's classes specifically for Pre-schoolers, focussing on songs and poems from the “the Isles” – Pasifika, Māori, Irish – have ended for this year. We’re keen to see them start again next year, so watch out for dates and time details..

Mark Your Diaries

Friday 17 November Music Friday night
Sunday 26 November Pot Luck Dinner
Thursday 23 November Film Club
Friday 1 December Darts night
Thursday 8 December Book Club


Our thoughts go out to Maggie and Alan Lee. Maggie is currently receiving specialist palliative care. We’re thinking of you both.

Who said Kiwis can’t fly? The “travel bug” is hitting: Brian & Kathryn Gahan, and Finbarr & Louise Murray & family are off to Ireland. And Desiree & I are off to spend Xmas with our daughter in Scotland (& then family in Ireland afterwards).


We’re happy with the results of our trial of opening early on Fridays. We think there is a (limited) demand for it. The next steps are to arrange “staffing” for the early period. We’ll let you know details in January. Keep an eye out for updates.


Our thanks to those who’ve already paid their Subscription. For everyone else:

1. See the website for Subscription rates
2. Make payments by DIRECT CREDIT to account number 06-0529-0416815-00. (Use your family name as the reference (or your phone number if you have to use numbers)
3. Tell us you’ve paid by completing the Renewal Form.

You’re of course welcome to invite friends to the Club, but when you do, why not suggest they join up? Especially if they are more or less ‘regular’ visitors. We have forms at the Club for new members, and the subscription rates are LOW!


If you’re meeting friends or guests at the Club, they need to sign the Visitors’ Book when they arrive.


The first ingredient of any recipe has to be: “find a man who can cook it” (Kay Braid)

Irish Whisky and Maple Glazed Ham


5kg/11lb gammon on the bone 4 celery sticks, roughly chopped
2 onions, sliced 1 bunch of fresh thyme
1 tablespoon black peppercorns 3 teaspoons allspice
200ml/7fl oz maple syrup 200ml/7fl oz Irish whiskey
1 teaspoon whole cloves Serves 10-12


Soak the gammon overnight to remove excess salt. Weigh the gammon joint and calculate the cooking time. Allow 20 minutes per 1lb plus 20 minutes extra. Place in a large pan cover with water and bring to the boil.

Add celery, onion, thyme and peppercorns. Simmer for 4 hours. Skim off any scum that rises to the top. Cook until the bone end comes away freely. Drain and leave until cool enough to handle.

Carefully remove the skin leaving some fat on, score the fat with a sharp knife in a diamond pattern taking care not to cut into the meat.

Preheat the oven to 180 ° C/Gas 4/Fan 160 ° C. Place the whiskey, maple syrup, allspice and clove in a saucepan. Bring to the boil and simmer for approximately 10 minutes until slightly thickened.

Stud the ham with cloves and place ham in a tray with a little water. Brush some of the syrup over the ham. Cook in oven for 1 hour. It is very important to keep basting to give the ham an even glaze.


You've found us at:

Keep in touch at:
: look for @huttirish.
: look for huttirish.

Remember the Hall is available for Hire to members. All this helps your Club financially, so recommend us to your friends.

Don’t forget the Club is open every Friday 7.30 p.m. to 1 am, and at other times by request.

Published by: Hutt Valley Irish Society.
12 Raroa Rd, Lower Hutt, Phone: (04) 569-6139

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