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Killaloe forester’s international success story

By Dan Danaher A RANDOM meeting with Taoiseach Enda Kenny blossomed into a great working relationship with one of the co-founders of an innovative award-winning tree mapping company, who has strong links with Killaloe. Enda Keane, who was educated in Killaloe, met Mr Kenny by chance at Merrion Square, Dublin back in December 2011 and they spent about 30 minutes talking about his business, Treemetrics, which has won and been nominated for numerous national and international awards. Born in Cork, Enda and his family moved to Killaloe when he was nine.His father, Paddy was a wildlife officer with the National Parks and Wildlife Service so it was no great surprise when Enda followed in his footsteps by studying forestry in UCG and UCD. In addition to delivering an address at an official function at Treemetrics’ headquarters in Cork two years ago, the Taoiseach also gave the company a huge boost to their international profile by citing them as one of …

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Shannon years ahead of schedule-Varadkar

By Owen Ryan SHANNON Airport’s recovery has progressed much more quickly than he expected when he moved to separate it from the Dublin Airport Authority (DAA), Transport Minister Leo Varadkar has acknowledged. On a visit to the airport, he said the fact that Shannon had moved into profit in 2013 (it was understood to be losing well over €100,000 a week in 2012) had surprised him. “To be brutally honest, as minister I really didn’t think the airport would manage that in year one. I thought it would have taken maybe three years for that to be done, so that’s one of the areas where we’re ahead of schedule really. It does mean that the airport is in a stronger position now to invest and to do things like build new hangars. Obviously, if you’re making losses you’re eating into your reserves and it’s harder to borrow. If you’re turning a profit, it’s much easier.” Mr Varadkar met with Shannon …

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January rain 72% above average

THE month of January saw a huge amount of rainfall at Shannon, Met Éireann figures show. While the amount of rainfall was above average everywhere, at few weather stations was it as extreme as Shannon, where it was 72% above average. Temperatures were very much in line with what is to be expected, while the amount of sunshine was slightly above normal.

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Fallen trees still have economic value

THE storm on Wednesday, February 12 was among the worst to hit Ireland since records began. Wind speeds hit up to 170kph, causing severe damage to forests. The worst affected area was the south of Ireland and the damage has been increased further by heavy rain and constant storms experienced by the country since December. Damage caused by wind is called wind-blow. Early reports suggest that wind-blow damage has occurred in recently thinned plantations and plantations older than 15 years. What should you do if your forest has been affected by wind-blow? If you own a forest that has been thinned or is older than 15 years, you should do the following: · Contact your local FEL forester for advice and a free site visit. Freephone 1800 719399; · FEL will carry out an assessment of the damage and provide advice as to what to do next; · If your forest is insured against wind-blow, FEL can assist you with …

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Prison sentence for sexually assaulting child

By Aoife Nic Ardghail A TWO and a half years in prison sentence has been imposed on a Clare man for sexually assaulting a then eight-year-old girl in her home. The 53-year-old man pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to sexually assaulting the girl by touching her private parts on November 23, 2009. He has no previous convictions. Judge Mary Ellen Ring said although the man had pleaded guilty, she was concerned that he had not fully accepted the implications of what he had done. An investigating garda revealed that the little girl had been watching TV when the man came into the room and lay down beside her on the sofa. The girl told gardaí the man had touched her chest area and private parts and asked her if she wanted to see his penis. The girl said “no” and nothing else happened. The garda told Tara Burns SC, prosecuting, that the girl complained to her mother after …

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112th birthday for Feakle woman

FEAKLE native, Kathleen Snavely, who is Ireland’s oldest ever woman, celebrated her 112th birthday on Sunday last. Mrs Snavely, nee Hayes, is originally from Garraun Feakle, made the record books in January as the Republic’s oldest living person, surpassing a record held by Katherine Plunkett of County Louth, who was born in 1820 and lived to 111 and 327 days. Now a resident of Syracuse, New York, Mrs Snavely celebrated her birthday at St Camillus retirement centre. She is in good health. She was born on February 16, 1902 to parents, Patrick and Ellen Hayes (nee Moroney). Her closest relatives live in Ireland, and Kathleen’s nearest relative  is nephew, Gerard Hayes, who lives in Limerick. She has a number of other relatives in Meath, Dublin, Louth and Leitrim. There are also bonds in Feakle. Former Mayor of Clare Councillor Pat Hayes; renowned fiddle player Martin Hayes and their sister, Helen Hayes are also related to Mrs Snavely, as their father …

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A countywide celebration of adult learning

A CELEBRATION of adult learning will take place throughout the county next week. Aontas Adult Learner Week runs from Monday, until Saturday, March 1 and a host of events have been planned for venues all over Clare highlighting the benefits of adult education. Jacinta Davenport, Educational Guidance Counsellor with LCETB (Limerick and Clare Education and Training Board), based in the Adult Education Centre in Clonroad Business Park explained, “Aontas believes that all adults in Ireland should have equal access to learning opportunities, that adult learning has a hugely important role to play in the economic and social future of Ireland. We know that adult learners and adult learning centres do vital work on a daily basis.” In the last seven years, the festival has become a firm fixture on the adult learning calendar with events taking place nationwide, including anything from information sessions, taster workshops, sample lectures to small gatherings of people who love to learn. She added, “The Adult …

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Rory Moloney with his eight-year-old twins, Caoimhe and Jack, at the completely submerged roadway to their home near O’Callaghans Mills. His wife and kids have had to leave the family home due to the flooding but Rory remains to look after his animals and farm.

Dooras Flood Repairs to reach €80,000

MORE than €240,000 is necessary to deal with damage caused in non-coastal flooding in the county, following the recent storms, and of that, €80,000 to €100,000 is estimated to be required at Dooras, O’Callaghan’s Mills. According to a revised report issued at a meeting of Clare County Council last week, the estimated cost of repairs for non-coastal storm-related flooding remained at €240,000. However, additional costs are expected due to continued monitoring of flood levels, management of interim defence pumping facilities and construction of sandbag defences until early February. This process, according to the report, is continuing due to ongoing intensive rainfall events and very elevated river systems. In outlining the works required for the areas of non-coastal flooding, county engineer Tom Tiernan highlighted in the report that Dooras, O’Callaghan’s Mills has been cut off from services and the wider community since just before Christmas, due to flood inundation of the access road to them. He states the requirements involved at …

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