There were one hundred reasons for celebration in Greencastle yesterday, as a well-known local man celebrated a milestone birthday.
Philip McClenaghan, from Poundtown, joined family and friends for a big celebration in the Redcastle Hotel to celebrate his 100th birthday.
Unfortunately for the workshy, the grandfather of 35 and great-grandfather of 58 says the the secret to a long life is “plenty of hard work.”
“Born and reared” in the picturesque fishing village, Philip was one of John and Mary McClenaghan’s seven children - three girls and four boys.
He has remained in Poundtown all his life, attending the local national school as a young boy.
A farmer by trade, Philip also indulged in a “bit of salmon fishing,” which he tells the Derry Journal he “really enjoyed.” He still lives across the street from the thatched house in which he was born.
In 1941, he married Malin woman Elizabeth Kelly. They went on to have nine children: John, Mary, Brendan, Jim, Elish, Nell, Siobhan, Patrick and Kate. Sadly, Elizabeth passed away in 2006. Mary and Brendan are sadly also deceased.
The family has now expanded considerably to include his large brood of grandchildren and great-grandchildren, birthday cards from whom adorn the mantelpiece of his home.
Philip has a great interest in football and supports Liverpool Football Club. He also enjoys watching horse racing, although he’s never been a betting man. His love for this stems from a lifetime working with and buying and selling horses.
His big birthday yesterday in no way fazed him and he revealed he was “looking forward” to it. He was also “excited” about his birthday party, which took place on Sunday at the Redcastle Hotel and his letter from the President.
A large group of family and friends gathered there to help him celebrate what he deemed a “good life so far.”