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Ennis

Fire at water treatment plant

Emergency services were called to deal with a fire at the Ennis Water Treatment Plant at Drumcliffe, serving the town and surrounding areas, this morning.The plant supplies drinking water to 30,000 customers in the area. Iris Water said the plant was immediately shut down in order to isolate electricity to the affected area but there was no impact on water supply as customers continued to be serviced from a reservoir attached to the plant. Full production recommenced at the plant at 6.30am and will be increased over the course of the day to replenish supplies at the reservoir.

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Ennis man faces AIB in Commercial Court

An Ennis man against whom AIB obtained a €3.48 million judgment last March had previously transferred €820,000 and a property in the US to his wife with the intention of defrauding creditors, the bank has claimed at the Commercial Court. Property developer Garech McGuinness, of Whispering Pines, and his business partner, Patrick Taylor, Moyreisk, Quin, had judgment entered against them after a judge ruled they had failed to establish an arguable defence to AIB’s claim arising from default on loans. In proceedings entered into the Commercial Court list on Monday, AIB claims that, between July 2013 and July 2014, Mr McGuinness transferred four sums totalling €820,926 to his wife, Justine McGuinness. It is also alleged he transferred to her around July 2014, for “a nominal consideration”, a residential property in Massachusetts, which the bank believes was worth not less than €250,000. In court documents, the bank claims these transfers were effected “with the dominant intention of defrauding creditors”, including the bank …

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Ennis Market closures

Work on the Garraunakilla Market Regeneration Project in Ennis will lead to the closure of both Market Street and Market Place from Monday next for a 12-week period. The closure of both roads from Barrack Street to Market Place, including Drumbiggle Road junction, is to facilitate the construction of new roads and footpaths, including diversion of overhead services and the provision of new sewers. Municipal District engineer, Eamon O’Dea said that as a result of the road closure, Summerhill will be temporarily open to two-way traffic, with parking restrictions on Summerhill. Mr O’Dea outlined that access to Summerhill, Market Place, Lower Market Street, Cabey’s Lane and Lower Parnell Street will be via Summerhill, with exit through Cabey’s Lane and Summerhill. He said existing signs and road markings on Summerhill would be removed and adjusted during the temporary road closure. Pedestrian access, Mr O’Dea explained, would be provided on Market Street and Market Place through the works area adjacent to the …

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Ennis Taxi Watch saving lives

ENNIS taxi drivers have helped save four people at risk of suicide, since getting involved in a pioneering suicide awareness initiative late last year. As highlighted in The Clare Champion, drivers with AAA Taxis signed up to the Taxi Watch initiative last year, receiving training in how to identify and talk to people at risk. According to Trevor White of AAA this week, the training has saved the lives of four people in the county capital. “At the time we first started looking into getting involved with the Taxi Watch initiative, we thought that if it just saved one life, it would be worth it. But four of our drivers have helped people in four separate incidences,” he revealed. “Thankfully, in each case, the individual spoke to and felt comfortable enough to confide in the taxi driver that they were travelling with, after the driver had asked the correct questions when they felt something wasn’t quite right. Further help and …

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Wheels coming off Ennis cycle plans

A SPOKE has been put in the wheel of plans to improve cycling and pedestrian facilities in Ennis, with claims that it will make the county capital less attractive for business and may even lead to job losses. Clare County Council has lodged part eight plans in relation to three Ennis Active Travel Town schemes at various locations and are currently inviting submissions from the public. The controversial plans are increasing concerns about how the proposals will effect businesses. Prominent Ennis businessman, Brian O’Neill, owner of the Rowan Tree, is objecting to proposals under the Clareabbey to Ballymaley section of the scheme, which involves the loss of nine parking spaces for the development of an “active travel amenity hub” close to his business. In a submission to the council, he voices his “full support” for the development of safe and defined cycling routes and amenities in Ennis and the county. However, Mr O’Neill argues that the plans “will negatively effect …

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Political alliance to remove poster cable ties

GETTING rival political parties together to form a government has been proving difficult enough in recent weeks. However, calls are now being made for politicians to cross the divide and come together to tackle a real bind. And their common foe? Cable ties that have been left all over the county on poles after the removal of election posters. Councillor James Breen has led the call for something to be done to remove the ties, which he says are still visible all over the county. “I took down any one I ever put up when I ran for election. What action is being taken to ensure that these are removed?” he asked. Councillor Ann Norton agreed, adding that the issue of posters being left up by candidates and even election posters re-appearing in previously checked areas is also a concern. The Clare Champion reported last month that Councillor Mary Howard had reported that up to 200 of her election posters …

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John calls time on O’Dea’s

THE claim many years ago by Samuel  Johnson that “there is nothing which has yet been contrived by man, by which so much happiness is produced as by a good tavern or inn” springs to mind when  looking back on nearly 80 years of trading in O’Dea’s pub, Ennis. Over that period, the popular O’Connell Street premises carved out a niche for itself in the licensed trade of the capital town. Like most pubs, it has many a story to tell with its characters – and there were many of them – the great music sessions and the sing-songs, now almost exclusive to a family-run pub like O’Dea’s. But it has run its race with the decision of proprietor, John O’Dea, to retire from  the licensed trade entirely and consider other options for 66 O’Connell Street. Last weekend, as patrons ordered their last drinks, they looked back on great times in O’Dea’s but, at the same time,  expressed their disappointment at …

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St Flannan’s students hoping for blast off

FOUR Clare students have taken one giant leap by coming first in their category for a major international competition ran by NASA. The St Flannan’s students have come top in the senior small team category in the NASA/Ames Space Settlement Design contest. They now have a chance to present their ideas in front of an audience of scientists and those in the space industry at the International Space Development Conference in Puerto Rico next month. Some of the biggest names in space exploration will be at the five-day conference, including astronaut Buzz Aldrin. Eoghan Keane, Kieran Maher, Sean Donnelly and Jason Herbert designed a settlement for thousands of people in the asteroid belt that lies between Mars and Jupiter. Their innovative design, orbiting around the dwarf planet Ceres, features agricultural, residential and industrial areas to support 10,000 people. The students worked with teachers John Conneely and Grainne O’Brien, with support from Michael Horgan, on the project. As well as facing …

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