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GAA man’s return to the land Down Under

PAT O’Brien always looked forward with a great sense of anticipation to Clooney-Quin’s championship encounters. A passionate GAA fanatic, he cherished all their success at adult and underage level. However, this time things were different.Standing on the sideline watching Clooney-Quin cross sticks with near neighbours and rivals O’Callaghan’s Mills in June 1987, Pat’s mind was miles away – in fact hundreds of thousands of miles away.Having won the Clare Intermediate Hurling title in 1986, Clooney-Quin’s clash with the ’Mills was their first outing in the senior championship.However, Pat couldn’t even stay until the final whistle to see how his beloved club fared. During the half-time cuppa, the 19-year-old grabbed his bags and made a frantic dash to Shannon Airport for his flight to Australia.He stayed for about six years working in a number of different jobs from 1987 to 1993 Down Under. His first job involved scaffolding and farm work and he also helped make a haulage road for an …

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’Bridge Milers limbering up for road race

The people of Sixmilebridge have a little more pep in their step this weather. That’s because they are limbering up for a major road race and family fun run in the village next month.This week members of The Bridge Milers, a weekly 50-strong running group, sprung from the starting blocks with plans to stage a 10k road race and 5k fun run on Friday evening, May 18.And to promote the event, they enlisted the help of Neil Cusack, a high profile figure in athletics. Cusack, who competed at the 1972 Olympics in Munich and four years later in Montréal, is the only Irish athlete to have won the Boston marathon. That was back in 1974. Founding member of The Bridge Milers, a group of people interested in running, some competitively others leisurely, Tom Enright has appealed to the entire community to involve themselves in the event.“We don’t want people to see this as an exclusive event for people interested in …

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When dreams come true

SINCE I was a child, I’ve always dreamed of being a Rose, and every August I hoped to one day be part of the amazing tradition that is the Rose of Tralee.A year ago, when a friend asked me to enter, I laughed and said “I’m not a Rose”. Then, a few days later, I started working in Montrose in Dublin and when I was asked again I thought, “why not?” Maybe getting a job in Montrose was a sign. Since that day, I have never looked back and this year has just been a whirlwind since that night in May last year.I was lucky enough to meet some amazing young women at the selection in Ennis and at the time I had no expectations. It certainly didn’t cross my mind that I would ever be chosen as the Clare Rose, I was just looking forward to enjoying the experience and getting to know the girls. I later realised that …

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Glór to host panel discussion on fracking

NUI Galway hydro-geologist Tiernan Henry is to speak on the possible dangers of hydraulic fracturing at a public event at Glor, Ennis, on Sunday at 7pm. This will be followed by a  panel discussion, which will be chaired by Lorna Siggins, Western Correspondent with The Irish Times. There will be a chance for full audience participation in a questions and answers session.Clare Fracking Concerned spokesperson Róisín Ní Gháirbhith said even though the entire chamber of Clare County Council has voting against fracking, this did not effectively prohibit it.“Local government just does not have that power. Secondly, anyone who becomes informed of the controversial method of fracking knows it would be a negative undertaking to let it happen in Clare and the other areas of the West of Ireland where it is being proposed,” she claimed.Róisín added that the event is being held to keep support alive on the issue.“It is important that people who are genuinely concerned about  the threat …

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Top award for Doolin hotel

A North Clare hotel this week received a top award from national tourism development authority Fáilte Ireland. Hotel Doolin was awarded the Service Excellence award, through Fáilte Ireland’s Optimus Programme, as special recognition for their ongoing commitment to continuous improvement and first-class customer experience.The Optimus Programme was established by Fáilte Ireland in 2004 to develop a culture of excellence within the Hospitality Industry through supporting organisations to become more profitable, efficient and competitive.“Hotel Doolin has undergone a full assessment based on the Optimus framework. This assessment confirms the performance of the hotel and the ability to embed the principles of continuous improvement across their business, while transforming these principles into tangible results,” said Liam Campbell, Fáilte Ireland.“The evident drive and commitment of all is very clearly demonstrated by this award. They deserve to be proud of the results they have delivered in raising the profile of quality management within the Irish tourism industry,” he continued. The performance of Hotel Doolin …

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US government buys Holland submarine

SUBMARINES were widely used for the first time during the Great War of 1914-1918 and they still form a vital part of the make-up of most navies. In the civilian world, they are used for scientific exploration, rescue missions, salvage and even underwater tourism. Recently, visits were made to the wreck of the Titanic and to the deepest parts of the Earth’s surface, the Marianna Trench in the Pacific Ocean.The idea of submarines has been around for centuries. They were even used by both sides during the American Civil War but not actually in an active combat role Those early submarines were mainly impractical and the designs were soon abandoned. They usually depended on being towed by a surface ship or on human propulsion when underwater.Liscannor native John Philip Holland was the first person to come up with a workable design for mechanically-powered submarines. His design were first adopted by the United States and he went on to design submarines …

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Cree company sows seeds of success

CREE-based landscaping, nursery and environmental services company, Hawthorn Nurseries & Landscaping Ltd. has been awarded the prestigious Landscape Quality Assured Award and a second special award for continuous progress in the development of their company. The awards recognise and promote excellence in the horticultural industry. To achieve this award, the company must undergo a thorough audit by Bord Bia, structured around the highest industry standards.Over 180 industry representatives attended the awards ceremony at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, Santry, Dublin. Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Shane McEntee presented the awards.Hawthorn’s managing director, Seán Tubridy acknowledged the company’s success is down to a team effort“All of our employees worked very hard to achieve the standards required to qualify for these awards. The success of Hawthorn would not be possible without the quality, commitment and enthusiasm of our employees.”He went on to pay tribute the Hawthorn’s customers for the “interesting projects they involve us in and …

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