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Ennis students showing concern

A GROUP of Ennis students have proved they can talk the talk after making it to the semi-finals of a national competition. The newly formed St Flannan’s College debating team have reached the semis of the Concern Debates, Concern Worldwide’s flagship school’s activity. For the semi-finals the St Flannan’s team will debate Coláiste Bhríde, Carnew, County Wicklow on this Tuesday  in the Irish Chartered Institute of Accountants Building, Pearse Street Dublin. The motion is ‘Confidence that world leaders will take meaningful action on the latest IPCC report is misplaced’ and St Flannan’s will propose the motion. Almost 150 schools initially entered the competition this year. Saint Flannan’s College have triumphed in their previous six rounds and are now down to the four top debating schools in the country. In the group stages, Saint Flannan’s College have beaten Presentation Secondary School, Limerick, Saint Caimin’s Community School, Shannon, and Salesian’s Secondary School Limerick. In the group’s decider, St Flannan’s defeated Laurel Hill …

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Riches of Rice to showcase talents on TV3

MUSICIANS and dancers from Rice College in Ennis have made it to the finals of the All Ireland Schools Talent Search. Over 600 entries for this competition have been whittled down to the last ten, and “Riches of Rice” have made the final ten. According to a spokesperson for the school, “It’s a huge achievement in our school and we are extremely excited about this wonderful achievement.” The final takes place in the University of Limerick Concert Hall this Saturday. The twelve students, with their teachers, Ms Hanrahan and Ms Brooks have been diligently practising during the Easter holidays and are greatly looking forward to the final, which will be televised by TV3 and broadcast on Sunday May 4. The only Clare entry in the final, the Riches of Rice team will represent County Clare in true Clare style, with beautiful arrangements of traditional tunes, slip-jig and reel, with sean-nós dancing and soft and hard shoe step dancing. It has …

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Mayor of Clare Joe Arkins

Hopes that LEO will bring lion’s share of jobs

A NEW service for supporting Clare businesses has become operational in Ennis this week with hopes high that it will “harness innovation, grow businesses and create jobs locally.” The new Clare Local Enterprise Office (LEO) is based at Clare County Council’s headquarters, Áras Contae an Chláir and represents a major restructuring of state support for businesses which was previously delivered by county and city enterprise boards. Combining the resources of the Clare County Enterprise Board and Clare County Council’s business support unit, the Clare LEO is one of 31 LEOs around Ireland that is tasked with delivering services and support to businesses within a framework set by the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation and overseen by Enterprise Ireland. Mayor of Clare Councillor Joe Arkins said the Clare LEO will act as a “first-stop-shop” for small businesses throughout the county. He added, “I look forward to the newly operational LEO playing a leading role in stimulating enterprise development in Clare. …

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Road Resurfacing Works in Ennis Town

CLARE County Council and Ennis Town Council in conjunction with a road resurfacing contractor will be carrying out essential road resurfacing and repair works at a number of locations around Ennis Town on this Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, and again between Tuesday, April 22 and Friday, April 25. Works take place at Mill Road Bridge Pedestrian Crossing on Tuesday April 15; the junction of Cloughleigh Road / Lahinch Road on Wednesday April 16; the junction of Rossanore Housing Estate and Marian Avenue on Thursday April 17; at Lower Abbey Street between Club Bridge and Abbey Street Car Park on Tuesday April 22 and Wednesday, April 23; Upper O’Connell Street between Barrack Street and Carmody Street on Thursday April 24; and the junction of Ballymacahill Road and Tulla Road on Friday April 25. Works will take place between 8am and 6pm. Traffic management control measures will be in place and will include lane closures and the use of temporary traffic lights …

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The Fairways put on the market

By Jessica Quinn THE controversial apartment complex in Ennis known as The Fairways has been put on the market for just €75,000, with members of Ennis Town Council urging that the property described as a “blight on the landscape” be bought by the local authority. Last summer the privately owned building near Marian Avenue hit the headlines when it was heavily criticised by council members calling for something to be done with the derelict site that was deemed not fit for human habitation. This week at a meeting of Ennis Town Council, Councillor Brian Meaney requested that a loan be raised to purchase and renovate the apartment complex for the provision of appropriate social housing. He acknowledged that the property is in “very poor condition” however he said that sum of €75,000 for the complex is “paltry”. “It’s well within the ability of Ennis Town Council,” he added. Responding to the motion, town clerk Leonard Cleary stated, “This property is …

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Animal welfare this May Day

by Jessica Quinn AN Ennis based group of animal lovers are urging the people of the county to get behind a new awareness and fundraising day that they hope will go on to become an international event. On May 1, Clare will host the first ever ‘MayDay for Animals’. This awareness and fundraising day will see Clare people tying a balloon to their home or place of work to remember animals in need of rescuing, and to celebrate animals rescued. According to organisers, there is a real urgency now to communicate to people the cruel reality of what is going on for some animals in this county and country. In addition to this, they want to encourage people to think before they commit to getting a pet, as it is heart-breaking for a family pet to be suddenly removed from the family home and surrendered to the pound or worse, dumped miles from home. MayDay is about making people more …

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Ennis legal costs “significant cause for concern”

LEGAL costs which could be more than €500,000 for Ennis Town Council’s defence of two High Court challenges to national legislation are “significant cause for concern” for the local authority. In 2013 Ennis Town Council were involved in two separate cases as a defendant. One case related to the Ennis Casual Trading Bylaws 2011, representing a challenge to the Casual Trading Act 1995 and in particular the status of casual trading on market rights. The council incurred legal costs of €147,000 in relation to this matter. Currently, the council is involved in a separate High Court case regarding the deregulation of the taxi regime. A number of sample cases are being heard in relation to this, including one involving Ennis. The legal costs relating to this are estimated to be in the region of between €300,000 and €450,000. Concern about the cost of the legal battles in defending national legislation to the local authority was outlined at this week’s meeting …

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Colaiste Mhuire shortlisted for national award

TRANSITION year students from Coláiste Muire, Ennis have been shortlisted to contend for the prestigious title of “Young Social Innovators of the Year 2014”. The new title holders will be announced at the 13th annual showcase of Young Social Innovators supported by its official partner Vodafone Ireland Foundation. The event, which will host up to a record breaking 6,000 young people, will take place at the Citywest Convention Centre on May 7 next. Coláiste Muire’s project entitled ‘Beware of I.T’, which is among 62 shortlisted for the title, looks at creating awareness about the increasing danger of Internet usage, particularly among young people. This year over 380 social action projects were completed across Ireland by 6,000 young people who participated in Social Innovation ACTION projects, organised by Young Social Innovators. Social Innovation ACTION projects give young people the skills and know-how to examine social problems and bring about the changes they wish to see in their communities and wider society. …

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