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Sky is the limit for high-flying Sabena

SOMEHOW Sabena Moylan manages to mix working as an air hostess for Virgin Atlantic with rugby refereeing in Munster, along with extensive charity work for the London-based Atlas Foundation. As recently as August, her work brought her to almost every continent. Rugby-wise she has attended the Rugby World Cup and the 2009 Lions tour to South Africa. Next month, the former Shannon Comprehensive and IT Tralee student will touch down in Chicago for the Ireland v New Zealand international. Currently working her way back from a knee injury, Moylan started refereeing in 2012. She calculates that there are four female rugby referees in Munster and 10 in Ireland. “There was a bit of communication between me and the Munster branch. I was touch judge in my first game out in St Mary’s. I wasn’t thrown in at the deep end in the middle of the pitch. They’re good like that. They let you touch judge for a month or two …

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Musket ball added to Quin treasures

TWO artefacts were uncovered following a week-long archaeological dig at Quin Friary but the significance of what was unearthed and the structures beneath the surface will not be known for a number of months. A musket ball and a pipe bowl were unearthed at two separate trenches at the Friary, which is locally known as Quin Abbey. Although there is no date for the musket ball, an early 17th century date has been assigned to the pipe bowl. The dig musket ball was uncovered in the soil from a trench which revealed remnants of the old castle ditch. One of the two archaeologists over the dig, Joe McCooey said, “We have other things to work on. We have to process everything. We have to do a lot of post-excavation work, so we will step back and see. We should have some further information for the public in three or four months time”. He said it is hoped to hold an …

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Shannondoc services slashed

THE Mid-West’s out-of-hours GP service, Shannondoc, has confirmed that due to a continued shortage of doctors, it is no longer able to maintain existing out-of-hours service levels across all its centres. Shannondoc, a not-for-profit service delivered by GPs in the region, will introduce changes to its Killaloe, Kilrush and Ennistymon centres over the coming weeks. The Killaloe clinic will open during weekdays only on an as-needs basis, with a mobile doctor servicing the centre, while at weekends the operating hours will change from 9am to 9pm to 2pm to 6pm, with patients seen at Limerick, Ennis and Nenagh centres outside those hours. Shannondoc’s Kilrush and Ennistymon service will relocate to Miltown Malbay during weekdays, with the same operating hours applying. Both centres will be operational on Saturdays and Sundays up to 7pm, instead of 9pm as it is currently. Kilrush county councillor Ian Lynch has called for an immediate public meeting on the issue, noting that the 35-mile journey from …

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Strike postponed at Element Six

INDUSTRIAL action due to take place at Element Six this week, having been earlier adjourned, has now been postponed for a second time. SIPTU members have been at loggerheads with management for some time over a variety of issues, most particularly a failure by the company to implement a Labour Court recommendation. Representatives of the union told The Clare Champio that their members were under very high levels of stress, with many of them having to take medication to cope with the prevailing situation. A meeting between management and SIPTU took place last Friday, which was chaired by Brian McGinn of the Labour Relations Commission. It is understood that some progress was made at this meeting, which led to the decision to postpone the strike action again. A document is set to be put to the union shortly, with members due to ballot on it thereafter. However, it is understood that there are some concerns already emerging that attempts may …

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Two Clare organic food producers shortlisted

Two County Clare organic food producers have been shortlisted for the upcoming National Organic Awards, organised by Bord Bia and the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine. Hens’ eggs from Rathlir Farm, Kilrush are shortlisted in the Best Fresh Product category, while the Burren Smokehouse’s Smoked Irish Organic Salmon is shortlisted in the Best Prepared Product category. Following judging by a team of industry experts, just 20 companies were shortlisted across seven categories. The National Organic Awards, which mark the achievements of Irish organic food and drink growers and manufacturers who create excellent quality organic products in Ireland, will take place at Bord Bia’s Dublin headquarters on Thursday, October 13. This year’s prestigious judging panel included JP McMahon, Michelin-starred chef from Aniar restaurant, Co.Galway; freelance journalists Suzanne Campbell and Oliver Moore; Alan Kinnear, International Buying Manager, Ocado, UK online retailer; Al Overton, Head of Buying, Planet Organic, UK’s largest fully certified organic supermarket; Lisa Garrett, Innovation Chef with Le …

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Funding for Feakle housing

A provisional budget allocation of almost €2.5 million has been approved for the construction of ten local authority houses in Feakle. News of the funding has been confirmed to Deputy Joe Carey who said that €2,452,805 would be made available to Clare County Council under the local authority housing construction programme and he expected that construction would be well under way early in the new year. “There is an established need for local authority housing in Feakle and I am confident that the ten houses will help keep local families in the heart of their community. This is in line with the Government’s ‘Rebuilding Ireland’ housing strategy to reverse the years of reduced investment following the economic crash,” he said. “It is important that the benefits are felt across the country and not just in the bigger population centres. For that reason, I am delighted that Feakle is among the first to benefit from the new strategy. “Keeping people in …

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Crusier runs aground in low water

Low water levels on Lough Derg led to a 34ft cruiser with four people on board running aground yesterday afternoon by the Scilly Islands, off the Ogonnelloe shore. At 1.39pm, the Lough derg RNLI lifeboat launched with helm Ger Egan, Lian Knight and Delia Ho on board.  The lifeboat located the vessel at the junction of Scariff Bay and Parker’s Point at 1.54pm. The four people on board were safe and unharmed and wearing their lifejackets. Once the lifeboat crew were satisfied the vessel was not holed, it was taken off the rocks and into safe water. The cruiser continued its onward journey once drives and rudder were found to be undamaged and in good working order. Peter Kennedy, Deputy Launching Authority at Lough Derg RNLI Lifeboat, has advised boat users to “to bring charts with you and know the areas close to shore and islands marked as un-navigatable, particularly as water levels are low in the lake at the …

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Hitting the road ‘Down Under’

Tourism Ireland, together with 13 Irish tourism companies, including Dromoland Castle, is preparing to undertake a week-long sales mission to Australia and New Zealand next month – to grow tourism from both markets. The sales mission, which takes place from November 14-21, will target some 300 influential travel agents, tour operators, airlines and travel journalists in the key cities of Auckland, Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne. The objective is to engage with travel professionals in the four cities who are currently selling the island of Ireland, or who have strong potential to sell the destination – and to encourage them to extend their Ireland offering, or to include Ireland for the first time, in their future brochures and programmes. Business links between the tourism companies from Ireland and the influential travel professionals in these markets will be strengthened during the sales mission. The island of Ireland has seen very good growth in visitors from Australia and New Zealand over the past …

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