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Falls Hotel loses discrimination case

A North Clare man was discriminated against on the grounds of gender by a well-known hotel, when it allowed “a female member of staff enter the gents’ changing room while it was occupied”, it has been found, in what may be the first case of its kind in Ireland. In the extremely unusual case, The Falls Hotel was ordered to pay Lahinch man, Thomas Flanagan compensation, after it was determined that the Ennistymon hotel had discriminated against him by treating him less favourably than a woman would have been if the circumstances were reversed. Mr Flanagan contacted the director of the Equality Tribunal on May 13, 2014, claiming The Falls Hotel, Ennistymon, had discriminated against him by subjecting him to regular occurrences of a female member of staff entering the gents’ changing room of The Falls Hotel, “which resulted in his discrimination, harassment and victimisation between October 2012 and January 2014”, contrary to the Equal Status Acts 2000 and 2012. …

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Kayaker pulled from water in Kilkee

A KAYAKER in his mid 30s, who is believed to have been visiting the area, was pulled from the water in the West End, Kilkee late on Wednesday afternoon. Members of the public had tried to help him by throwing life buoys into the water. The man got into difficulty at Majella’s Cove just before 5pm and was rescued shortly afterwards, after Kilkee Coastguard were alerted by the public. “It kicked off at 4.55pm, following reports from numerous members of the public that there was a person in difficulty in the bay in Kilkee. He was clinging to a kayak that had got overturned. The weather had got extremely bad here fairly fast,” Martony Vaughan, officer in charge of Irish Coastguard Unit in Kilkee said. “We were alerted and we got him over on the rocks. We took him to safety, recovered his kayak and several other bits. Members of the public had been throwing life rings into him from …

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Fleadh to return to Ennis in 2017

The decision of the Ardchomhairle of Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann to stage Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann 2017 in Ennis has been warmly welcomed in County Clare. Hosting the world famous traditional music event for two years in a row is a mammoth challenge but one that we embrace with open arms, according to Mícheál Ó Riabhaigh, Cathaoirleach of Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann Inis 2016. “On a Sunday morning during Fleadh Nua in 2010, Frank Whelan, Rory Casey, Pat Liddy and I first discussed the idea of bringing the Fleadh back to Ennis. Little did we realise then, the time and effort it would take to have it back in Clare for the first time in nearly 40 years. To have the Fleadh back twice in consecutive years is beyond our wildest dreams,’ he continued. “Right now, it’s full steam ahead in Ennis to make this year’s All Ireland the greatest ever. We are learning a great deal in a very short …

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Diocesan Chapter role for Fr Tommy

GORT parish priest Fr Tommy Marrinan has been appointed to the Diocesan Chapter, earning him the title Canon and meaning he will now act as adviser to the bishop and as a trustee of the diocese. Bishop of Galway, Kilmacduagh and Kilfenora, Martin Drennan made the appointment on Thursday last. He announced that four priests were being added to the Diocesan Chapter, which now has 12 members. These canons work as advisers to, and in very close collaboration with, the bishop. They have a particular responsibility to ensure the effective administration of the temporal affairs of the diocese. Other priests appointed on the day were Fr Ian O’Neill, parish priest of Claregalway; Fr Michael McLoughlin, PP, Moycullen; and Martin Glynn, PP, Mervue and Good Shepherd. According to Fr Tommy, the appointment is a reflection of the parish of Gort and Beagh. “It is an honour for the parish, as it is a title usually given to a priest in a …

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Local backing for Doonbeg coastal works

FOLLOWING an information meeting between Trump International Golf Links and Hotel Ireland and Doonbeg Community Development, the chairman of the community group has said the vast majority of people in West Clare favour the proposed coastal protection works at the golf club. Consultants on behalf of the resort, which employs 230 people during the summer months, have submitted plans to Clare County Council, which would involve the use of 200,000 tonnes of limestone during the eight-month project. The consultants also claim that the West Clare economy would benefit to the tune of €38 million, between 2017 and 2024, if permission is granted. The plans lodged with the local authority will cost €10m if they are given the go-ahead, while the “beach augmentation” will be a 2.8km long coastal protection infrastructure, which golf club management say is “not a wall”. “From what we have heard, 99.9% of local people are in favour of these coastal protection works,” Doonbeg Community Development chairman …

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World Award for Burren and Cliffs

THE Burren and Cliffs of Moher Geopark has won a major international award, recognising it as a global leader in sustainable destination development. On Wednesday, the Geopark was revealed as the winner of the Destination Leadership award by National Geographic at their prestigious World Legacy Awards. The Geopark, which is managed by Clare County Council and receives support and funding from the Geological Survey of Ireland and Fáilte Ireland, won the Destination Leadership category for its tourism for conservation project, GeoparkLIFE. The Burren and Cliffs of Moher Geopark was the only European winner at the awards, which honours tourism companies, organisations and destinations regarded as leaders in sustainable tourism best practices. Speaking at the ITB Berlin Convention in Germany, at which the announcement was made, Mary Howard, leas-cathaoirleach of Clare County Council, said the award “is testament to the partnership approach to managing sustainable tourism in the Burren that has been developed over the years by Clare County Council, regional …

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Moyhill Garden harvests a top award

MOYHILL Community Garden finished second in the Sustainable Community section of the 2015 Get Involved Community Award presentation ceremony, which was held in Dublin last week. Now in its third year, the Local Ireland Get Involved Sustainable Communities awards initiative is promoted by 51 weekly paid-for newspapers and this year’s initiative featured 30 projects from all over Ireland. The projects cover the essential areas necessary to build sustainable communities, including clean energy, water conservation, local food production, eco-tourism and developing local community employment. The North Clare-based group was also highly commended in the Community Impact section. In their presentation, the group told the gathering at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Blanchardstown that they had visited Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) in the UK in an effort to establish their own one. Green Party General Election candidate, Fergal Smith heads up the Moyhill group and he told The Clare Champion that reaching the national final was a positive experience for them. “Local …

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Olivier Award nomination for Ennis actresss

An Ennis actress is in good company as a nominee for one of the world’s most prestigious theatre awards. Denise Gough has been nominated in the Best Actress category for the Olivier Awards, along with Hollywood actresses Nicole Kidman and Gemma Arterton. Denise, from College Green, has been nominated for her performance in Duncan Macmillan’s People, Places and Things. Critics have been raving about her performance, describing it as “career changing”, “astonishing” and “emotionally shattering”. She has already won the Best Actress Award at the Critics’ Circle Theatre Awards 2015 for the same part and was nominated for the Best Actress Award by The Evening Standard for her “career-defining performance” as an actress whose life has spun recklessly out of control because of her addiction to drink and drugs. When she was named best actress for the Critics’ Circle Awards, she admitted almost giving up acting before she got the part with the National Theatre. Now she is the toast …

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