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Regional

Burren and Cliffs of Moher retain Geopark status

The Burren and Cliffs of Moher has successfully retained its Geopark designation for a further period following a reassessment and revalidation by the UNESCO supported Global Geopark Network. The designation is subject to review every four years and an assessment was  conducted by Dr. Klaus George from Germany and Dr. Margaret Wood from Wales in June. The announcement was made at the 13th European Geoparks Conference 2015 in Rokua Geopark, Finland. 18 Geoparks were up for revalidation with 16 receiving green cards, including the Burren and Cliffs of Moher. Global Geopark status was first awarded to the Burren together with the Cliffs of Moher in 2011 for their outstanding geological and cultural heritage and has resulted in the region joining a global network of over 100 Geoparks worldwide. The Geopark is managed by Clare County Council and receives support and funding from the Geological Survey of Ireland and Failte Ireland. “Clare County Council has been working in the Burren since …

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Ennis in new urban renewal funding scheme

Ennis has been selected as one of 17 Irish towns and cities eligible to benefit under a new urban renewal funding scheme. The Clare County Capital has been named among the locations included under the Designated Urban Centres Grants Scheme 2014 – 2020, announced by Government in July, which will enable investments in Irish urban centres to the order of €80 million for the period 2014-2020. The Scheme will involve European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) funding of approximately €40 million and matching funding from the relevant local authorities. “Ennis has in recent years been rejuvenated, particularly the wider town centre area thanks to ongoing investment from Clare County Council with the support of the local business community. With projects such as the West Clare Greenway and proposed redevelopment of the Market area, it is clear there is a solid commitment to making Ennis an attractive and vibrant location to live and work in, as well as visit,” commented Senator Tony …

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Burglaries in North Clare

Gardai in North Clare are investigating a series of burglaries in Bellharbour, Ballyvaughan, Tubber and Crusheen during the past week. Between 12.15amand 7am last Saturday a shed was broken into in Turlough, Bellharbour by breaking the lock. A garden strimmer was stolen but was subsequently recovered dumped in a nearby ditch. The car that was parked nearby had its rear window smashed and a chainsaw stolen from the boot. Last weekend also, a shed in Muckinish, Ballyvaughan was also entered by breaking the lock. Stolen were a Netlfix Alto power washer, an MS 180 chainsaw, a pole saw and a pick axe. Earlier in the week a shed was broken into in Turloghmore in Boston, Tubber. Stolen in this burglary were a variety of wrenches and a Stihl orange-colured chainsaw. A double axle trailer was stolen from Clare County Council’s storage yard at Crusheen over the weekend. Between 4pm last Friday and 8am on Monday, the council yard in Clonmoney …

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Exhibition tell stories of emigrants’ Epic Journeys

More than a thousand people from one East Clare village passed through Ellis Island on their way to a new life in the United States, according to research undertaken on the parish. An online exhibition exploring the Irish emigration experience to America was launched in Tulla at the weekend and focuses on the town’s emigrants and diaspora. The community was chosen as the pilot parish for a research project undertaken by the nationwide organisation, Ireland Reaching Out, with the support of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, as part of the Government’s Emigrant Support Programme. The results of the research and the findings of the study were launched in Tulla Courthouse last Friday. As well as the online resource, a curated exhibition featuring eight emigrants was hosted as part of the Tulla Reaching Out Weekend of Welcomes, an annual festival that celebrates local heritage and welcomes the diaspora back into the parish. Epic Journeys Ellis Island brings to life …

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Scholarship on the menu for Oonagh

McDonald’s Ennis employee, Oonagh Wallace is one of just 15 employees of the fast food chain nationwide to be awarded a college scholarship. The student of International Law at University College Cork was presented with her scholarship by the Minister for Skills, Research and Innovation, Damien English, TD, at an event in Dublin. The function was also attended by her parents and Kieran McDermott, owner operator of McDonald’s Ennis. The McDonald’s Scholarship Programme is an initiative which celebrates the hard work and dedication of McDonald’s employees, who are completing college and further education studies. Speaking at the awards, Minister English, TD, commentated: “Smart companies invest in their staff as the return on investment will lead to a better workforce and more satisfied customers. I would urge other companies in Ireland to look to McDonald’s and celebrate staff commitment by investing in their education.” Each winning employee receives €1,000 towards their education costs. Winners in the past have used the scholarship …

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Planning review sought for €20m windfarm

CLARE County Council has been asked to conduct a thorough planning review concerning the start of civil engineering works for a €20 million windfarm amid claims it constituted unauthorised development. Councillor PJ Kelly has called on chief executive officer, Tom Coughlan, to conduct a review into how a windfarm company, Tullabrack Energy Limited, was allowed to start work on its site in  Tullabrack in West Clare despite a series of written warnings about its alleged non-compliance with planning conditions. The Lissycasey councillor wants a review to establish whether or not planning laws were administered in accordance with proper procedure and to put the necessary structures in place to ensure there is no repetition of “administrative confusion”. “It seems that one section of the council doesn’t know what the other section is doing. There is a management deficit and I am calling on Mr Coughlan to intervene,” he said. A seven-day commencement notice for an ESB substation on the site came …

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Scouting about in Ennis

AN appeal has gone out to anyone interested in becoming an adult leader with the Ennis Scout Group to get involved and “help keep the scouting experience alive in Ennis”. More and more children want to join the group and a lack of leaders has meant that they are not able to take everyone who wishes to join. The Ennis Scout Group begins the new year, after their summer break, on the week of September 14. According to Nicky Moloney, group leader, “The problem with the success the group in Ennis is having is that more kids are wishing to join the group, which they think is brilliant. But, at the moment, the group is not able to take everyone who wishes to join, as they are lacking in adult leadership, both male and female. “At the moment, they are stretched very thin with leaders to cater for the kids they have right now, with some leaders double-jobbing and covering …

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Jobs boost at Smokehouse

SEVEN full-time jobs will be created in Lisdoonvarna, along with 10 seasonal ones, it has been announced. The Burren Smokehouse has signed a contract with global logistics company UPS, as part of plans to broaden its overseas footprint. The deal coincides with an announcement by the producer of Burren smoked salmon, trout and mackerel products to invest €150,000 in its existing operations and to create new jobs at its production facility in Lisdoonvarna. The collaboration with UPS will mean The Burren Smokehouse products sold online can be delivered around the world. As well as restructuring its e-commerce activity, The Burren Smokehouse is also expanding operations at its production facility and will be launching a new brand inspired by the Wild Atlantic Way later this year. Owner Birgitta Hedin-Curtin said, “We are investing in our integrated systems, allowing for greater e-commerce activity and higher efficiencies in terms of customer care and our global customer footprint. At our production facility in County …

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