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hannon gets the country’s first Starbucks drive-thru

The Shannon Free Zone has become home of the country’s first drive-thru Starbucks as the US coffee house chain opened the doors of its latest outlet to the public. The 204sq metre unit developed by Shannon Group subsidiary, Shannon Commercial Properties, will employ 15 people as it becomes the latest page to turn in the evolving story of the Shannon Free Zone. The US based giant, which is among the world’s largest coffee companies and coffee house chains, operates over 20,000 outlets globally but this is the very first drive-thru in the Republic of Ireland. Starbucks opened its first Irish store in 2005. Located in Shannon Free Zone ‘West’, the single storey unit will include outdoor – as well as indoor – seating, ideal for the heatwave currently gripping the nation. Given its location in one of the country’s largest industrial parks, the unit also, appropriately, comprise a coffee dock/meeting hub that will service the entire industrial estate and prove …

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Shannon records hottest Irish temperature for 12 years

EXTREME heat is the story of the week in Clare, and on Thursday Shannon Airport recorded a phenomenal 32 degrees celsius, the hottest Irish temperature seen since July 2006. It was also the hottest June temperature recorded anywhere in the country since 1976. A staus yellow high temperature warning remains in place until 10pm on Saturday for the whole country. Temperatures of up to 32 degrees Celsius are expected in the Mid West again today, while in excess of 27 degrees are expected on Saturday. Clare County Council have said that their gritters are continuing to treat roads that are affected by melting tarmac, while a road temperature in Scariff hit 56.9 degrees celsius on Thursday. Road users are advised to be cautious, particularly on minor roads and when braking. Owen Ryan

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Lisdoonvarna asylum seekers plight shows how fortunate we are-Comment

THERE are many things we complain about in Ireland, sometimes with validity. Our health service is creaking, our property prices are exploding, our weather is appalling, our capital is swallowing the rest of the country, our streets are filled with homeless men and women. All of these are daily complaints that fill our newspapers and chat shows but, for all Ireland’s failings, when we hear the stories of those housed in Direct Provision in Lisdoonvarna, we see that this is not such a dysfunctional society. One man who spoke to The Clare Champion fled the Congo because he feared he would be killed by state forces if he didn’t poison others. Who here will ever be put in such a position? It might seem unbelievable that anyone here over the age of 25 was born into an Ireland where homosexuality was illegal, but things have clearly progressed dramatically. Contrast that with the experience of Sihre Mkandla, who moved in the …

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Illegal encampment may jeapordise future of planned social housing in Ennis

AN illegal encampment may jeapordise the future of a planned development of social housing in Ennis, it is feared. Plans are underway by the council to build 40 housing units at Ashline to, according to the council, “address the high needs in the Ennis area”. However, a family has set up an illegal encampment in a nearby laneway regularly used as a shortcut to Ennis National School. Last month Clare County Council assisted the gardaí in removing the barriers after parents told how their young children didn’t feel safe going to school along the route. Members of the Ennis Municipal District voiced their concerns at their monthly meeting where plans for the housing development proposal at Ashline were outlined. A preliminary public consultation meeting about the development is set to be held on Tuesday next,  June 19 in the Temple Gate Hotel from 6pm to 7.30pm. While councillors welcomed the plans, they highlighted the need for the illegal encampment to …

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Superfast broadband in Clare

Sky Ireland has announced the introduction of its all-new superfast fibre broadband product to Clare and the Mid West. “Sky Fibre 1Gb, will use Fibre to the Home (FTTH) networks to deliver the highest available speeds in the country to the widest possible footprint. As the demand for data increases in homes across Ireland, Sky Fibre 1Gb will connect families to more of what they love, by enabling them to simultaneously download, stream and share content without interruption, all under one roof,” according to a spokeperson. The spokesperson added,”Sky Fibre 1Gb will bring customers future proof technology that is up to 10 times faster than standard fibre broadband, meaning it’s perfect for very high bandwidth users that want instant, multi-device access.”

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Clare company gives lead in recycling

CLARE company Clean Ireland Recycling has introduced the first Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) waste collection vehicles in Ireland. In a major partnership with Gas Networks Ireland, it has developed the country’s first fast-fill CNG refuelling station in Shannon, which was officially opened by Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment, Denis Naughten. The company’s waste collection fleet will be fuelled from the station, with the CNG significantly lowering emission levels, compared to the traditional diesel engine trucks. Carbon dioxide will be down by 22%, nitrogen oxide by 70%, sulphur dioxide by 80% and there will be 99% less particulate matter. It will also deliver a cost saving of 35% to the company. Clean Ireland Recycling has also invested in specially-commissioned, lower-emission Scania CNG trucks and will continue to replace its existing diesel-powered fleet with CNG vehicles over the coming years. Speaking at the official opening, Minister Naughten said, “In fairness to Clean Ireland, they have been one of the leaders …

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Mart to become a fundraiser car park

CLARE Marts in Ennis is set to be turned into a car park – but not permanently. The Lions Club of Ennis has secured the Quin Road site to provide parking on this Sunday and Sunday, June 17, to cater for the massive crowds expected to turn out for both the Munster Hurling Championship round robin games in Cusack Park, and the Fleadh Nua. As well as providing 500 parking spaces for Clare’s hurling and traditional music fans, the venture will also raise funds for local charities. On Sunday, Clare will take on Waterford, while on June 17 the home team will take on the Shannonsiders for a fixture that traditionally packs out the county grounds. James O’Loughlin, of the Lions Club of Ennis, explains that the money raised from the parking will go towards the club’s ongoing charitable work locally, such as the annual old folks’ holiday and Christmas food appeal. “The proceeds from the parking will all go …

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Where West showcases tourism offering on Wild Atlantic Way

From Carrigaholt in the Loop Head pensinsula to Carron in the northern part of the county, the Clare coastline offers unrivalled and breath-taking views. All along the Wild Atlantic Way, the world’s longest defined coastal touring route, the spectacular scenery embellishes the tourism offering from quaint eateries, to pretty seaside villages, sandy bays and cliff top walks. Put simply, the Wild Atlantic Way is inspiring, renewing, relaxing and invigorating and this week The Clare Champion, in collaboration with The Connacht Tribune, has published the first ‘Where West’ magazine, the ultimate guide to planning your holiday break along the west coast of Ireland. Business Development Manager with The Clare Champion, Leo O’Connor said Clare is renowned for its tourism offering and the development of the Wild Atlantic Way has added another important string to its bow. He said Where West is designed to showcase businesses and events throughout counties Clare and Galway encompassing all that is best along the Wild Atlantic …

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