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Des O’Malley for book festival

Former Progressive Democrats leader and government minister, Des O’Malley will participate in a special political debate as part of the Ennis Book Club Festival in March. The Limerick politician will join a panel of experts for this year’s Sunday Symposium, entitled The Naked Politician on Sunday March 8. The panel discussion about life as a politician in Ireland today also features Professor Gary Murphy, political scientist at DCU; Mick Clifford, correspondent for The Irish Examiner; and Katie Hannon; political correspondent for RTE. Supported by Clare County Council, Clare County Library and The Arts Council, the three-day programme of festival events is expected to attract an estimated 3,000 book club members and literary enthusiasts from all over Ireland, Europe and North America.

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Search for St Michael’s Villas photos

LOCAL historian, Cora (Hahessy) McNulty is working on a history of St Michael’s Villas, in association with the Clare Roots Society. The book will be launched on June 18 next. Cora is putting out an appeal for the names of the children in the photograph above and is seeking two photographs, which must be included in the book. One is a photograph of the St Michael’s Grotto Committee. This committee was formed in 1958 to raise funds for the construction for the iconic grotto in St Michael’s. A photograph appeared in The Clare Champion of the blessing of the grotto in March 1960. Cora has a very poor copy of this photograph and is confident that someone out there has an original. The committee members were as follows: PJ McGarry (chairman); P Considine (designer); M Ryan; M Coleman; J Lynch; P Sheehan; J McGuane; M Kinnane; T Coffey; M Culligan and R O’Brien. The second photograph being sought is of …

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The search for Eoin Madigan is ongoing. He was last seen in Galway City on January 5.

Body of Ennis man found

Friends and family of missing Ennis man Eoin Madigan, whose body was recovered from a Galway canal on Friday morning, have expressed their thanks to all who had engaged in searches for him over the past few weeks. Eoin, from St Michael’s Villas, Ennis, had been living in Galway for the last number of years. He was last seen leaving Kelly’s pub in the city on January 5. There was an appeal last week for people to take part in searches in Galway on Saturday and Sunday however his body was found on Friday morning and removed to University College Galway Hospital for a post mortem examination. Eoin’s funeral mass was held on Monday morning at 10am with burial afterwards in Drumcliffe Cemetery. Eoin is deeply regretted by his mother Alice, brothers Patrick and Anthony, sister Nollaig, relatives and friends.

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The search for Eoin Madigan is ongoing. He was last seen in Galway City on January 5.

Friends appeal for help in search for Eoin

Friends and family of missing Ennis man, Eoin Madigan are appealing to people to take part in searches in Galway this weekend. Eoin is from St Michael’s Villas in the town but has been living in Galway for the last number of years. He was last seen leaving Kelly’s pub in the city on January 5. Martina Giblin, a friend and former housemate of Eoin, is appealing to people in Ennis and across the county to travel to Galway to take part in searches there this weekend. “Eoin has a heart of gold. I would appeal to people in Clare to come out and help find him,” she told The Clare Champion. “Anyone who knows him knows he would be the first person out if it was someone he knew. He would be that type of person. Galway is only an hour up the road and we have set up a Facebook page called Search for Eoin Madigan and it …

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Elderly man escapes from Ennis house fire

An elderly man had a lucky escape last night after his home at Mc Hugh Villas in Ennis was extensively damaged by fire. The alarm was raised shortly before 7pm when neighbours noticed a fire in the front room of the end-of-terrace bungalow. McHugh Villas is an estate primarily occupied by elderly residents. It’s understood the man tried to bring the outbreak under control initially before the fire services were alerted. Three units of the fire brigade along with gardaí from Ennis responded to the incident. Fire personnel quickly set about tackling the blaze and firemen battled to ensure the fire didn’t spread to adjoining property. The fire was brought under control within 30 minutes.

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Key points of Ennis draft plan

The key points of the Draft Ennis and Environs Local Area Plan 2015-2021 are: Housing The draft plan zones 110 hectares of land for residential purposes, providing sufficient space for 2,600 housing units and giving the town the potential to reach its 2021 national population target of 32,000, up from 25,000 (2011 Census). The draft plan puts a strong emphasis on increasing the number of people living in the town centre of Ennis. Economic Development and Enterprise The draft plan confirms the importance of key employment locations, such as the Gort Road Industrial Estate and Roche in Clarecastle. It also zones land for expansion at Information Age Park, Ennis, in addition to lands for enterprise and light industry on the Kildysart Road. Enterprise zoning from the current town plan is retained at Beechpark, with potential to accommodate a campus-style, low-carbon enterprise park. A site for light industry at the Tulla Road interchange on the M18 and a 33-hectare site zoned …

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Ennis plan maps opportunities for the future

OPPORTUNITY knocks for Ennis, with 19 potential development sites identified in the Draft Ennis and Environs Local Area Plan 2015-2021. The draft plan, revealed by Clare County Council this week, comes 65 years after the first town plan for Munster’s largest town was prepared by renowned architect and town planner, Frank Gibney. The draft contains rejuvenation, development and expansion proposals for Ennis and identifies 19 key opportunity sites to reverse decline, provide new shops and services for residents and create employment. Among the opportunity sites identified are the Garraunakilla covered market – due to be completed at the end of this year or early in 2016; the development of the former Boys National School on the Kilrush Road, where retail development of 3,000 square metres is envisaged; pedestrian-friendly areas, to include Barrack Street Square, old Barrack Street and a rejuvenation of a pedestrian-friendly O’Connell Monument area. The draft plan sees the old Analogue building and adjoining infill site presenting an …

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Ennis Woman Dies in Jamaica

ENNIS woman, Maeve Smythe has died unexpectedly in University Hospital in Kingston, Jamaica. She had been living in Turks and Caicos Islands for some time and was recently transferred to hospital in Kingston. The late Ms Smythe had broken her leg on December 21, following which she had an operation. Prior to relocating to the Carribbean, Ms Smythe ran Epicene, a business in Ennis town centre. Ms Smythe’s father was Tim Smythe, the former Clare county councillor and international cross country champion. The Fairgreen in Ennis is named after the late Tim Smythe. Ms Smythe is survived by her brothers, Barry, Ennis; Mike, Canada and Conor, Oregon, USA; and sisters, Maura Neylon, Ennis; Ann Dempsey, Grand Turk; and Olive Kelly, Dublin; relatives and a wide circle of friends.

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