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Award for John’s cancer report

CLARE FM’s John Cooke has won a national media award for his contribution to health journalism. Mr Cooke, who presents Morning Focus on the regional station, was presented with the Consumer Broadcast Radio award at this year’s GSK Irish Medical Media Awards. RTÉ reporter Rita O’Reilly and producer Tara Peterman were jointly named Journalists of the Year, while Joe Leogue was named Young Journalist of the Year for the story he broke for the Corkman newspaper. Irish Times journalist Kitty Holland received the Story of the Year Award for her investigative report into the death of Savita Halappanaver. Mr Cooke was presented with his award a programme with three Clare women on the topic of ovarian cancer. During the emotive programme, Tulla woman Marie Phelan and Ennistymon’s Margaret Barry outlined how they had overcome ovarian cancer. Oncology nurse Ann Murphy from Ennis also detailed her experience of the fourth most common cancer facing women, outlining statistics from the Irish Cancer …

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A Christmas Fairy Tale

Once again, it’s time for the Clare Champion’s Christmas Window Display competition. The competition is open to all shops and businesses in Ennis and the aim is to enhance the festive atmosphere in the town in the weeks leading up to Christmas. Our theme for this year is ‘A Christmas Fairy Tale’. Entrants should choose one or more children’s fairy tales and give it a Christmas twist. The fairy tale itself doesn’t necessarily have to be about Christmas but it can be interpreted in any way to fit the theme.Entry forms will be available from next week, at the Clare Champion offices and entry is free. The winners will be announced before Christmas with prize winners receiving Clare Champion advertising vouchers. This is the tenth year of the competition, which has firmly taken its place in the build up to Christmas in the town of Ennis.

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Changing views and attitudes

A KILRUSH man, who is now director of the Gay and Lesbian Equality Network (GLEN), said he had no choice but to leave West Clare as a young man. Brian Sheehan was reflecting on how public attitudes and opinions have changed so much since the early 1980s, as he spoke to The Clare Champion following the announcement that a referendum on gay and lesbian marriage will be held in 2015. “I knew I had to leave Kilrush as soon as I possibly could. I knew I was gay from a very young age and I knew I had to get out. Dublin was where I eventually got to,” Mr Sheehan said on Wednesday. “I had thought I would have to go abroad but decriminalisation came and circumstances changed. I realised I wouldn’t be a criminal if I stayed here any longer. At the time, I always felt that it would be absolutely impossible to be myself in Kilrush. I knew …

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Talking democracy in Guingamp

YOUNG people from the locality headed to Guingamp in France, Shannon’s twin town, last week to discuss local democracy and how they can get actively involved in local politics. The exchange, as part of an intercultural link with Guingamp, Aue in Germany and Kadan in the Czech Republic, looked at how democracy works at a local level in each of the towns and the issues that affect young people in the area at a local level. Five young people from Shannon and the surrounding area headed up the trip, with the support and company of Mayor of Shannon Greg Duff and Clare Youth Service Youth worker Aoife Guilfoyle. In advance of the trip, Councillor Duff commented, “The emphasis will be very much on the young people taking part in this exchange as they explore their place in local politics and I want to do everything I can to facilitate their interests and learning. I see this very much as a …

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Andrew’s wish comes true

SEVEN-year-old Andrew Burke from Whitegate has had his wishes come true, as he received a number of special surprises on Saturday. The Make a Wish Foundation arranged for Andrew’s wish of owning a puppy to come true. Andrew suffers from neuphratic syndrome, a condition affecting the function of his kidneys. Andrew was put forward for the wish by his play specialist in Temple Street Children’s Hospital, Olive Kenny. As part of this, Andrew had to fill out a wish book, which asked him things such as if he could be anyone in the world, who would he be or if he could meet anyone in the world, who would he meet, as well as other things such as his favourite restaurant, which he said is the Half Barrel in Whitegate. He filled out every bit of it himself and when it came to choosing his number one wish, he said he wanted a puppy. Mum, Leanne, explained what happened on …

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Pat’s love of radio and GAA comes together

To this day, Pat Guthrie vividly remembers the summer of 1954.  His father purchased a battery radio for the princely sum of £16. It was also the year he listened to his first All-Ireland hurling final radio commentary, leading 60 years later to his book which chronicles the careers of RTE’s radio sports commentators. IT was the first weekend in September and John Guthrie headed the few miles down the road from his thatched home in Commons North to Corofin village, to Pat Reidy’s bicycle repair shop on Church Street. It was a chore he was growing accustomed to, having the recently-purchased wet and dry radio battery charged and at the ready. That weekend was particularly special for the Guthrie family, as they tuned into their first All-Ireland hurling final radio broadcast. It was a final that elevated Ring to legendary status as he won his eighth All-Ireland medal, eclipsing the record shared in hurling by Kilkenny’s Sim Walton, Dick …

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Kilrush manager hoping to take down Cratloe

HAVING seen at first hand how fluently Cratloe played against Cooraclare, Kilrush manager Aidan Moloney knows his team will have to work exceptionally hard, defend in numbers and tackle ferociously if they are to compete with their opponents in Sunday’s Senior Football Championship quarter-final. Last year’s semi-finalists have been boosted by the return of John Moody. who could have a key role to play at midfield, where Fergal Lynch and Cillian Duggan dominated against Cooraclare. However, Moloney has identified not conceding goals as a paramount priority. “From our point of view, Cratloe looked very impressive the last day. We’d be hoping that Kilrush come with a lot of intensity. There’s no doubt but that if we’re going to go out and concede goals, we haven’t a prayer against them. “If we can stop them scoring goals and make them kick from further out, I think we might have a chance,” he suggested. Cratloe blitzed Cooraclare, largely by running at them …

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