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Lifestyle

Investment needed in Spa Wells

Investment is needed if Lisdoonvarna’s Spa Wells is to become “a much bigger attraction” and drive tourism in North Clare during the off-peak season, according to a Clare TD. Members of Lisdoonvarna Fáilte highlighted their plans for the historic Spa Wells to Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform, Brendan Howlin, at a meeting organised by Labour TD Michael McNamara. The minister met with the community group on his recent visit to Clare to officially open Doolin Pier. “Minister Howlin was very impressed with the Spa Wells in Lisdoonvarna and the work done to date to re-open these Victorian wells. He visited the pump house to see for himself the work done to date,” said Deputy McNamara. “The minister is now looking forward to receiving a feasibility study outlying plans to develop the Spa Wells in Lisdoonvarna further, at which point I am confident he will give serious consideration to investing in the project,” he added. “The Victorian Spa Wells are …

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Not enough of a splash about Shannon Dolphins

THE founder of the Shannon Dolphin and Wildlife Foundation (SDWF) has claimed West Clare tourism interests have failed to capitalise on the “unique resource” of the family of 140 dolphins that populate the Shannon Estuary. Dr Simon Berrow says this is despite a “20-year head-start”, while he is also fearful about the future of the dolphin monitoring centre in Kilrush, which has been operating for 22 years. The centre receives no funding, although it did in the past. “As a region, I think we’ve failed to make the most of what, to me, is a completely unique resource. Loop Head Tourism has done a fantastic job promoting Loop Head but the area doesn’t look any different to me from 20 years ago. The lighthouse is the lighthouse. It’s not unique. They are packaging it together in a lovely package but I still think the dolphins are our unique product. Nowhere else in Ireland has dolphins that are so accessible. Very …

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Willie Clancy boost for Miltown

MILTOWN Malbay business person Maureen Kilduff has said that commerce in the town is hugely dependent upon the annual Willie Clancy Summer School, which begins today (Saturday) and runs until Sunday, July 12. “Most people would say that 20 to 30% of the year’s turnover in the service businesses are done in the 10 days of the Willie Clancy festival,” Maureen stated. “What makes a good year is the number of students booked in. Each student brings a parent or a friend with them. There isn’t a bed to be found from Lahinch to Quilty on the Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday night of next week,” she revealed. Another boost in terms of visitor numbers is the fact that many primary-school teachers are availing of the Department of Education and Skills approved courses at the summer school. Meanwhile, four visual artists, Lorraine Callanan, Mary Moran, Bairbre Geraghty and Edel Hogan are set to launch an a project called CeA/R/T in Miltown …

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Support your local this summer

Small business owners in the hospitality industry are asking the people of Clare to ‘Support Your Local’ and choose a trip to their local pub, restaurant or hotel this summer. The call is part of the Support Your Local Campaign, which is seeking to highlight the economic contribution that the drinks and hospitality industry makes across the country. Recent research shows that, in Clare, the drinks and hospitality industry accounts for 329 hotels and pubs; supports 2,909 jobs; pays €66mm in wages and purchases 7.8m litres of milk. “Nothing beats a trip to the local pub. Pubs are the hub of the local town, the heart of the local community, a place where people can relax and enjoy the welcome surrounds of friends and neighbours or simply pop in for a quick bite on a Sunday,” says Charlie O’Meara from Moroney’s Bar, Market Place, Ennis and chairman of the Clare Branch of the Vintners Federation of Ireland. “If we are …

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Car damaged during ‘test drive’

A MAN who caused €2,361 damage to a vehicle he took on a “test drive” while drunk has to pay €25 a week in compensation going forward or he will face a prison sentence. Martin Daly of 6 The Mews, Kilrush Road, Ennis, took a 11 CE Peugeot 207 from the forecourt of O’Sullivan and Hansbury Motors in Ennis on February 10 last after seeing the keys in the ignition. Mr Daly took the vehicle to Kilmaley and Inch and had at least one crash during his spin, causing the damage. When gardaí apprehended the defendant at Dromeen East, just outside Ennis, he had a bottle of vodka in the passenger seat, which he drank in front of them. There was damage to one of the car’s alloys, there was a hole in a tyre, part of the bumper was missing, while the right wishbone and right shock were both bent. The defendant was arrested on suspicion of drink driving …

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Clare, a county of culture

Plans to promote Clare as a County of Culture during 2016 have taken a significant step forward with the issuing of a call for expressions of interest for key cultural events and festivals during the year. The County of Culture initiative was first announced in March after Ennis was designated as the host town for next year’s Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann. The Clare County Council-led initiative will incorporate the development of a programme of cultural events, to be promoted nationally and internationally, around the prestigious annual event which is expected to attract up to 400,000 people to Ennis in August 2016. The council is now calling on community groups and individuals throughout Clare to submit expressions of interest for cultural festivals and events that will form part of the County of Culture programme. The local authority anticipates that the scheme will support a minimum of four projects each to a maximum value of €10,000. Expressions of interest are invited from …

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Tipperary man missing

GARDAÍ in Ennistymon are seeking the public’s assistance in tracing the whereabouts of 30-year-old John Ryan, missing from Faranaderry, Templemore. John is studying computers at Limerick IT and residing in Bunratty. He is is described as 5″10, slim build, short brown hair and has green eyes. He was last seen at Cliffs of Moher, Liscannor, driving a green Volkswagen Golf on the evening of June 7. He was wearing a light grey cardigan, black t-shirt, blue jeans and white runners. Anyone who has seen John or who can assist in locating him is asked to contact Ennistymon Garda Station on (065) 7072180, the Garda Confidential Telephone Line on 1800 666 111 or any garda station.

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Council support for peace park

A Clare Peace Park Initiative to erect a First World War memorial in honour of the Clare men who served and died in the conflict has been granted planning permission. The development, which will now proceed in partnership with the council, is on 0.1 hectares of land at Causeway Link, across the road from Glór, in Ennis and will consist of three standing stones, with inscriptions, which will be surrounded by about 100 square metres of paving with pathways in and out of the memorial site. The group’s chairperson, Dr Keir McNamara, is pleased that the initiative has been granted permission and would welcome further sponsorship to ensure the project can get off the ground as quickly as possible. “If we could get in the last bit of money we need, there’s no reason it couldn’t be completed by the end of this year. If we have a slower response to the fundraising effort, we would probably be looking at the middle of …

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