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Receivers appointed to Doonbeg Golf Club

Luke Charleton and David Hughes of Ernest and Young have been appointed joint receivers to The Lodge at Doonbeg and Doonbeg Golf Club in West Clare. The property is one of Ireland and Europe’s most distinguished five-star luxury resorts. “The Lodge and its facilities are recognised as one of the premier golf and leisure destinations in Ireland and Europe. The Lodge at Doonbeg and Doonbeg Golf Club will continue to trade as normal, with all employment being maintained and suppliers being retained. Additionally, there will be no change in the status of members of Doonbeg Golf Club,” Luke Charleton commented. There will be no disruption to services as a result of the appointment, events booked will go ahead as scheduled and all deposits and gift vouchers will be honoured. Mr Charleton said he was aware that interest has already been expressed in the property and is hopeful of concluding a sale as a going concern within a short time frame.

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Gardaí scupper cannabis cultivation

GARDAÍ targeting the sale and supply of controlled drugs in the Kilkee area,  yesterday discovered two separate cannabis cultivation operations. Gardaí searched a house in Lislanahan, Kilkee, where approximately 200 cannabis plants with an estimated street value of €160,000  were discovered. A man and woman, both aged 23 years, were arrested and detained at Kilrush Garda station under the provisions of Section 4 of the Criminal Justice Act, 1984. In the second operation, gardaí searched a property in Tullaroe, Kilkee, where approximately 300 cannabis plants with an estimated street value of €280,000 were discovered. A man in his 50s was arrested and detained at Ennis Garda station under the provisions of Section 2 of the Criminal Justice (Drug Trafficking) Act, 1996. These finds follow on from from a cannabis “grow” find in Carrigaholt area last week.

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West Clare surrogacy journey to India

A FILM following a West Clare couple as they travel to India to fulfill their dream of starting a family together was broadcast on RTE One on Monday night. Over the course of a year, from conception through birth, Her Body, Our Babies captured the trials and tribulations of an emotional process fraught with legal complications and ethical dilemmas. Fiona Whyte and her partner Seán Malone, from Miltown Malbay,  had been trying to have a child together, since they met eight years ago. Although parents, they wanted a child from their relationship. Sean has a son from his previous marriage. Fiona was also married and raised two boys in Dublin before returning home to Clare to be with Seán. For couples who cannot have children together, fertility treatment offers hope, but no guarantees. In recent years, an increasing number of Irish people are opting for surrogacy as a last hope of having a child. But it’s a costly and complicated process – which poses …

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Mayor of Clare Joe Arkins

Banner budget passes at first attempt

AFTER three and half-hours of debate, Clare County Council passed their budget for 2014 on Wednesday evening. As is so often the case nowadays, the relative lack of finances proved a stumbling block, and Councillor James Breen proposed delaying the budget, until Clare was allocated more money from the Local Government Fund. His proposal was seconded by Councillor Tommy Brennan on condition that it also call for money raised in property taxes in Clare over the last two years to be returned to the county. After being questioned by Councillors, County Manager Tom Coughlan told the members that the local authority has 21 days to pass a budget from its first meeting. If that deadline were to pass, the Council would face the prospect of being dissolved and functions taken over by the Department of the Environment. Mr Coughlan made it clear he didn’t believe there was any realistic chance of any more money arriving, simply because it was being …

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Corofin man dies in accident

A COROFIN man in his late sixties has died following a traffic accident in Ennis on Sunday night. He was Joseph O’Loughlin of Newtown, Corofin and formerly of Roxton, Corofin, known to everyone as “small Joe”. The accident occurred in the Upper Market Street area of the town at around 10pm when the car being driven by the deceased hit a parked vehicle. He was pronounced dead at the scene and his body was taken to University Hospital Limerick for a post mortem examination. Three others were in the car at the time. All three were taken to hospital but were later discharged, one with a broken arm. An area of The Market remained sealed off on Monday morning, as gardaí continued a technical examination of the accident scene.  

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Clare ‘blacklisted’ for jobs

CLARE has been “blacklisted” when it comes to job creation according to Ennis councillors, who this week criticised the IDA for not bringing employment to the county. Councillor Tommy Brennan has demanded that Ennis Town Council write to both Minister Richard Bruton and the IDA to ask “what they have against County Clare”. Councillor Johnny Flynn commented that the IDA should change its name to “Industrial Development for Dublin, Cork and Limerick”. This week’s meeting of Ennis Town Council saw Councillor Flynn call for an Ennis and District Economic Taskforce to be set up in preparation for the upcoming abolition of Ennis Town Council. He urged that the taskforce should target unemployment, job creation and implement the actions of the Clare County Council Enterprise Strategy. The councillor stated that despite recent jobs announcements by the IDA, “unfortunately Ennis doesn’t seem to be getting any of these”. He went on, “Ennis should be standing up and forming a group to look …

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Mayor of Clare Joe Arkins

Bottom of the pile in 2014 local government funding

CLARE County Council has slipped from third worst to the bottom of the list in a league table of allocations under the Local Government Fund (LGF). Councillors criticised the reduction in national funding under the LGF at the authority’s budget estimates meeting on Wednesday. Mayor of Clare Joe Arkins revealed he contacted a representative of Environment Minister Phil Hogan to complain about the reduction in the LGF and Clare’s place on the bottom of the list. Councillor Arkins said he was informed that Clare’s LGF allocation had to be considered in the context of the expenditure by Irish Water and other local government payments. Councillor Tom McNamara noted that Clare had a compliance rate of about 75% for the Household Charge and over 90% for the Property Tax and yet it found itself bottom of the list in terms of LGF. Councillor Richard Nagle said it looked as if the council was going back to the bad old days of …

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Signs to highlight ‘Ireland’s largest lingerie section’?

ENNIS’ connection to the hit television show Fr Ted could soon be immortalised, with calls being made for a sign to be erected in the town declaring that the county capital is the home of ‘Ireland’s Largest Lingerie Section’. Scenes for the Christmas special of the show in which Fr Ted and other priests are trapped in the department store were filmed in Dunnes Stores in Ennis. According to Councillor Brian Meaney, Ennis should capitalise on its relationship with the show by putting up a sign on Friars Walk. Speaking at a meeting of Ennis Town Council this week, Councillor Meaney commented, “Fr Ted now has cult status. There is significant interest in events like Ted Fest and there are a number of groups involved in a Ted Trail, organising visits to places associated with the show. We’re not inventing anything here; this is a point of interest.” Councillor Peter Considine questioned the validity of the claim that the store …

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