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North Clare

A festival of writing at Doolin

THE second annual Doolin Short Story Competition, details of which were announced on Monday, offers both experienced and budding writers an opportunity to put their skills to the test. An attractive prize fund should help to stir the writers’ creativity. Hotel Doolin has confirmed a prize fund of €1,000 will be awarded to the winning entrant, with prizes of €600 and €400 prizes for the second and third placed entries respectively. The winning entries will be announced at the Doolin Writers’ Weekend on March 28 to 30. Competition entries will be judged this year by Anthony Glavin, former editor of New Irish Writing in the Irish Press (1986-88) and former commissioning editor with New Island Books (1994-2004). The Boston-born author has published two story collections, One for Sorrow and The Draughtsman and The Unicorn. His stories have also appeared in many Irish, UK and US anthologies, while is also the author of a critically acclaimed novel, Nighthawk Alley. The second …

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Cliffs Geopark on awards shortlist

THE  Burren and Cliffs of Moher Geopark’s management and promotion  as a sustainable destination has gained international attention. The World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) has confirmed the Geopark as one of 18 finalists for its 2014 Tourism for Tomorrow Awards, just two months after the Clare destination was shortlisted for a top honour in the 2013 World Responsible Tourism Awards. The Tourism for Tomorrow Awards are one of the highest accolades in the global Travel & Tourism industry, recognising sustainable tourism best practices in businesses and destinations worldwide, ranging from local destinations to global hotel groups, international airlines, luxury tour operators and small eco-lodges. Award applications were received this year from 56 countries, representing all continents. The Burren and Cliffs of Moher Geopark has been shortlisted alongside Bonito (Brazil) and Temes S.A. – Costa Navarino (Greece) as ‘Destination Award’ finalists for “showing commitment to supporting and delivering sustainable tourism best practices in their destinations.” Winners and finalists will be recognised …

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Financial boost for Burren farmers

By Nicola Corless THE  Burren Farming for Conservation Programme will be included in new Rural Development Programme, it had been confirmed. Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, Simon Coveney announced that €12.5 billion of funds will be sanctioned through the Irish Government and the CAP’s Pillar II programme to the agriculture sector in the period up to 2020. Clare TD Pat Breen said that inclusion of Burren Farming for Conservation Programme in the new Rural Development Programme and the proposals to introduce a new agri-environment scheme were particularly welcome. “I am in regular contact with the farming community and I am very much aware to the challenges facing farm families at this time. Indeed, the recent storm has placed Clare farmers under further pressures with thousands of acres of land now under water,” Deputy Breen said. “There was a very good uptake from Clare farmers for the previous REPS and AEOS scheme and the GLAS scheme will build on the …

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Treading the boards in Yerma

NORTH Clare student Aoife Corry stars alongside fellow Clare actress Ger Kelly in the Centre for Drama, Theatre and Performance, NUI Galway and Core Theatre College’s staging of Yerma next month. Yerma is the first of a number of projects in which students on the NUIG Drama programmes act and work with Galway theatre professionals in public productions. In this case, students on the drama course are collaborating with Core Theatre College Galway. Yerma is a modern world classic, by Federico Garcia Lorca, a Spanish republican poet, director and playwright. The play is about a woman living in a small village, who feels alienated from friends and isolated from her society. Yerma is about the hunger to conform and the dangers of obsession. The play is full of passion, humour, music and rhythm. It is both poetic and brutally realistic. The play is directed by Max Hafler, who works extensively as a director and as a voice and acting teacher. …

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Fundraising surge for playground flood repairs

THE new-year storms devastated many parts of the county but Lahinch was particularly badly hit. While the promenade was opened within a few days the playground, which the community fought so long to open, has been closed since. Despite their shock and disappointment at the damage done to the playground, the committee behind it have been stunned by the support they have received during the clean-up and now in their efforts to raise money for repairs. “We cannot get over it. It has been really outstanding,” said chairperson of the Lahinch Playground Committee, Nicola Hartigan, niece of the late Gerard Hartigan, who had led the charge for a playground in the North Clare resort for years. “I’m from Lahinch. I have lived here all my life. I would have thought that we weren’t that kind of community, you know that community based, but people have come out in droves to do what they can. It has shocked me. In difficult …

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New cancer information booklet

EIGHT out of 10 cancer sufferers had to give up employment or change their work hours due to fatigue, a study undertaken by Sláinte an Chláir has shown. Details of the study are contained in a new information booklet, developed by members and friends of Sláinte an Chláir, which will be officially launched at Waterpark House, Ennis next Thursday at 2pm. Anyone affected by cancer on an individual basis or those who have family members affected by the condition are welcome to attend the launch. The Kilnamona centre helps people to access information on all aspects of cancer, including diagnosis, treatment and after care, as well as providing practical support for people and their families. “Meeting people who have been through a similar experience can definitely help to make the journey with cancer a little easier. Our members and friends are very happy to share their experiences and to support people affected by cancer,” said a spokesperson. The booklet provides …

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Expect delays on Ennistymon Road

MOTORISTS travelling between Ennis and Ennistymon can expect to face delays over the next number of weeks.  Starting on this Monday morning, there will be delays on the main road between Whelan’s quarry and the landfill site at Inagh for road maintenance works. Motorists on this strategic North Clare route are urged to allow additional journey time, especially for travelling to work and school in the mornings.

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Lectures examine changing landscape

WHILE recent storms have demonstrated how the weather and power of the Atlantic Ocean can have a devastating impact on Ireland’s coastline, a new series of lectures will examine how the landscape of the Burren region has changed over millions of years, due to floods, tsunamis, earthquakes and ice ages. The Stone Water and Ice: Understanding the Burren Landscape evening courses, hosted by the Burren and Cliffs of Moher Geopark and the Burren Outdoor Education Centre, take place between February 13 and March 13. Among the keynote speakers will be Dr John Murray of NUI Galway’s Earth and Ocean Science Department; geologist, Dr Eamon Doyle, and the Burren Outdoor Education Centre’s head of field studies, Colin Bunce. “The geology of the Burren and the dramatic changes experienced by the landscape of the region down through the millennia form the basis for the introductory geology course for adults,” explained Dr Doyle. “The underlying geology of the Burren holds many fascinating clues …

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