We were very saddened to hear the recent death of Peter Nolan, one of weekly restoration volunteers. Peter was one of the first volunteers who joined us at the Irish agriculture Museum in early 2014, and was involved in many of our restoration projects over the last few years.
He was born in Tinnashrule near Ferns in County Wexford in 1942 and when he married Sadie (Nee Hiney) in 1967 he moved into Sadie’s home place in Rectory Road Enniscorthy. Sadie at this time was working for Whitfords garage which was at the bottom of Rectory Road. Peter was driving a lorry for Kelly’s of Kilpierce, and later drove a lorry for Lett’s of Enniscorthy delivering drinks to every pub between Wexford and Dublin.
In 1973 Peter set up his own light engineering business at the back of his house on Rectory Road, and along with Sadie, who looked after the books, they ran a very successful business until they retired in December 2010 after 37 years. Sadie had a triple bypass in 2011 but sadly everything did not go to plan and although she always showed a “brave face” they did not enjoy their retirement as they should have.
Peter was with us at the museum until early July this year, and in good form until a visit to hospital diagnosed that he had cancer. In mid-August while he was awaiting treatment, we headed off to the Dorset steam rally. Sadly on 24 August when we were in Dorset, Peter called me to tell me that Sadie had passed away suddenly that morning. He was only to survive her for two weeks, himself passing away on 7 September.
Peter was a very keen member of Ferns gun club, as well as a founder member of the Wexford Wicklow vintage group, and also a founder member and a board member of the Irish Vintage Society. His passion was vintage tractors, and restoring them, and supporting many tractor road runs in the Co. Wexford area, organising a road run at Monagear a few weeks before he was hospitalised, raising funds for Monagear national school and St John’s Hospital in Enniscorthy.
Peter and Sadie will be greatly missed by us all, and we would like to extend our sympathy to their daughter Colette, son-in-law Barry, and their two grandchildren Daniel and Sarah. It has been a very difficult time for all of us at the Museum but it is some consolation to us that every time we enter the new machinery Hall we can reflect on some of Peter’s handiwork.
Chairman I. A. M.