March 12, 2020

Maxine O’Sullivan Wins at Cheltenham

Ursuline past pupil Maxine O’Sullivan had a spectacular win at the Cheltenham Racing Festival on the 66-1 outsider ‘It Came to Pass’. The horse trained by her dad, Eugene, romped to victory in the St James’s Foxhunter Challenge, also known as the Amateur Gold Cup. The whole School is so proud of Maxine and delighted for her and her family.

Junk Kouture

Congratulations to the three Ursuline Junk Kouture teams who have qualified for the National Final. In all the School had six competitors strutting their stuff on the catwalk at the Regional Final in Limerick – Belle Ame, Get’cha Head In The Game, Glacé Plastique, Givin’ it Welly, Midnight Memories and Barking up the Wrong Tree. The three teams that will now go on and represent the Ursuline in the 3Arena are Barking up the Wrong Tree, Givin’ it Welly and Midnights Memories.

Givin’ it Welly draws on Ireland’s rich agricultural heritage for its theme. Milk filter socks, old wellies, twine, piping and meal bag string were used to make the elaborate beehive shaped headpiece and hooped mini skirt in beautifully contrasting gold and black. It aims to highlight the underrepresentation of women in farming.

Barking up the Wrong Tree is a beautiful woodland themed dress decorated with leaves, bark, twigs and moss in natural tonal shades of brown and green. Model Sarah Fitzgibbon’s hair has even been stunningly shaped to resemble a tree emerging from the crown of her head.

Midnights Memories concerns itself with all matters relating to sleep. The bustier, trouser and tie-dye coat combination is actually a social commentary on the dangers and effects of sleep deprivation. Insomnia is an ever increasing phenomenon, especially among the young, who are frequently disturbed at night by the bleeping and buzzing of social media on their devices.

Well done to all participants and to the team of teachers involved. The School also eagerly awaits the Nationwide episode recently filmed in the Ursuline that will feature this year’s entries.

All Ireland Cross Country Athletics

On Saturday, 7 March the Ursuline Junior Cross Country team competed in the All Ireland Schools Cross Country in Santry having qualified out of both the East Munster and Munster Finals. Santry will certainly live long in the memories of all the Junior cross country team. Having won the Munster title for the first time since 2014, the team of Kate Ferncombe (Captain), Orla Ryan, Paula Quirke, Grace Fitzpatrick Ryan, Aoibheann Fogarty and Niamh Hayes were looking forward with slight trepidation to the 2.5k event over a fairly flat course. The race started off very quickly and over the first lap groups began to emerge. Kate and Orla Ryan stayed very much side by side and kept up what was a relentless pace over an unforgiving course. Paula kept within sight of the front two Ursuline girls along with Grace, Aoibheann and Niamh.

The second lap which was the longer 1500m lap brought the competitors down into a wooded area and back up along a muddy uphill section. This was a tough part of the course and at that stage the Ursuline runners were competing with the eventual winners Lisburn along with Loreto Dalkey and Scoile Muire, Ennis to be one of the top three teams in the country. Coming into the home straight, it was hard to know which teams had medalled.

Internet results put UCT in joint silver medal position as the girls finished on equal points with Loreto Dalkey. At the medal ceremony the team was presented with the bronze medals due to the system of counting that the AAI use. Later on in the day everyone was a little surprised to see that the Juniors had been promoted to outright silver medal position and this was later reversed to bronze again. It was a bit disconcerting and there has been no official explanation to date as to why exactly the positioning was changed and changed again. Well done to all the girls involved and coupled with the wins for the Track and Field girls in the Munster Indoors, it brought to an end one of the Ursuline’s best weeks of performances in many years.


There was plenty of First Year play on the Hockey pitchers last week with three groups in action. The First Year A team had a drawn games against Bandon and Rathdown. The Bandon clash finished up 2-2 while in the encounter with Rathdown yielded no score for either side. The First Year Bs had better luck beating Bandon 7-2 and Rathdown 5-1. The First Year Cs had a 1-0 win against Rathdown in their match.

The Junior Bs lost out to Rockwell while the Junior C team beat them 1-0. The First Year C’s ended their game against Loreto Clonmel in a nil all draw.
The Minor A Final against Crescent saw the Ursuline team play out of their skins to end 1-1 at the full time whistle. The UCT goal came courtesy of Lauren Brannigan.. This meant it was down to shuttles to decide who would be taking home the Cup. Well done to the Minors and their Crescent counterparts on a thrilling game and congratulations to Crescent on their win.

School Council

The School Council, under the chairmanship of Maria Connolly, recently started a communal walk around the Hockey Pitches at lunchtime on Fridays. The aim of this initiative to get as many students as possible out in the fresh air stepping it out and to count up the collective steps at the end of each session. The plan was to walk the distance between Thurles and Brescia in Northern Italy, the birthplace of St Angela Merici, founder of the Ursulines. Each students’ step would be totted up at the end of the Friday walking session to eventually reach the distance of 2088 km. As it stands the students have managed collectively to walk from Thurles to Dublin which is no mean feat. This is a fun, enjoyable activity that everyone can get involved in regardless of age or ability and the School Council have appealed to the students of the Ursuline that they need their steps. The more who take part, the more steps that are generated, the closer Brescia will be.

The School councillors also had a fun movement to begin the School day every morning last week. The aim was to get everyone out of the early morning slump, help them feel energised and ready to take on the day. The councillors played a minute of music over the intercom and teachers and students did a minute of exercise each morning such as jumping jacks, squats, the cha cha slide, before lesson began. It was a brilliant wake up, get up and go aerobic starter to the day and thanks to the School Council for organising it.

Written By Nora Tuohy