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Tulla all set for Weekend of Welcomes

INTERNATIONAL visitors with an interest in their ancestral past are expected to converge on Tulla this weekend for the Weekend of the Welcomes. The event, which runs from this Friday to Sunday, has proven popular with those who want to reconnect with their ancestral parish through the Ireland Reaching Out project, which the Tulla Reaching Out committee is actively involved in. Jane Halloran Ryan of Tulla Reaching Out said last year 15 individual visitors from Australia, the USA, the UK and Ireland came to Tulla to trace their ancestral roots and this year they are expecting 22. “This will be the third year. We started it two years ago for The Gathering and it has grown every year. There has been a very positive response,” said Jane,  Ireland Reaching Out Volunteer of the Year award winner in 2013 “People continue to come back and many people will come over on their own and the next year they will bring their …

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Search continues for Japanese couple

Gardaí have issued an appeal for information on the movements of two Japanese tourists, for whom a land and sea search in ongoing in Kilkee. Eiji Takagi (63) and Ushio Azaki (61) checked out of their hotel in Spanish Point on Saturday morning and have not been seen since. The alarm was raised on Tuesday after their red Hyundai hired car was spotted in Kilkee, still in the same place where it had been parked a couple of days earlier. Concerns were heightened when it was established that they did not turn up for a flight from Shannon on Monday. A search was initiated along the northern section of Kilkee Bay on Tuesday evening but discontinued as darkness fell. The search resumed on Wednesday but was hampered by rough seas in the morning. The search resumed yet again in the afternoon and was called off when light faded. It is understood that the search on the shore and in the …

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Bullseye on Woodford community project

THE much anticipated Bullseye Wood Project will be launched on this Wednesday next as an initiative of Galway Community Archaeology Advisory Project, in partnership with Woodford Parish Development Group. The project will involve the sensitive cleaning of a small children’s burial ground within woodland and the organisers are recording it as a community archaeology training programme. The site is located over the border in Galway, just outside the village of Woodford and the aim of this project is to have the site included in the Heritage Council’s Adopt-a-Monument Scheme. The Adopt-a-Monument Scheme (AaM) aims to empower communities to become actively involved in the conservation and interpretation of local archaelogical heritage sites by providing expertise, mentoring and support. The initiative originates in Scotland, whereby the local community will be involved long term in the management and maintenance of the site. It is also planned to create a green walkway around the site as a local amenity so that the archaeology, ecology …

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Kinvara's picturesque harbour area. Photograph by John Kelly.

Kinvara during the War of Independence

AN exhibition relating to Kinvara during the War of Independence opened in the village at the weekend. Kinvara Company, Irish Volunteers 1916-23 will remain open daily from 11am to 3pm until Saturday. The exhibition coincides with National Heritage Week but organisers from the Kinvara Folklore Digital Archive are hoping it will kick-start plans to mark the contribution of men and women in the area to the War of Independence. “Hosted by the Kinvara Community Council and assembled by members of the community, this exhibition has unique oral and written histories of a small town’s effort within a bigger conflict,” explained Eilish Kavanagh of the Kinvara Folklore Digital Archive. “A lot of areas, not just Dublin, were active in 1916 and Kinvara was one of those places. Lately, I have attended a couple of heritage meetings about the county’s plans to mark the centenary of the 1916 Rising and it struck me that there was no mention of Kinvara. It highlighted …

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Charlie fundraising for Kenyan project

KILKEE man Charlie McGrath is fundraising for a volunteer working trip to Kenya next January. While in Mombasa for a fortnight in 2016, the retired fire fighter, who operates a fuel business in Kilkee, will spend his time working with a Ray of Sunshine Foundation building project. As part of his efforts to raise €3,000, Charlie is organising a concert with TR Dallas in the Kilkee Bay Hotel on Friday night. “It’s all in aid of building a rescue centre in Mombasa, Kenya. It’s in support of the work of Dr Rory O’Keeffe, from Ennis, who is the medical supervisor in that centre. This is my third trip to Kenya,” Charlie told The Clare Champion. “The first time I was there, we built a rescue centre for blind children. We then built an extension to an overcrowded school and this time we’re building a medical centre for children who have been through difficult times. “It’s taking 200 volunteers to complete this …

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Shannon man new GMIT president

SHANNON’S Fergal Barry has been appointed president of Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology. On Tuesday, he said, “I’m delighted with the appointment. It’s very rare that opportunities like this come up to influence the development of an organisation at the heart of so many people’s lives, futures and dreams. It’s an organisation that has an excellent educational history, really passionate staff and it’s playing a central role in the reform of our higher education system, which is part of the reform of our public services as a whole.” Fergal is the son of Tess Barry of Fearnóg and the late Pat Barry. He attended St Senan’s National School and St Patrick’s Comprehensive School and currently lives with his wife, Deirdre in Limerick City. Tess is extremely well known in Shannon, being involved in various local organisations. “The stones on the road would know my Mum,” Fergal jokes. “The apple doesn’t fall very far from the tree and I bring with me …

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Howard throws hat into the ring

ENNIS Councillor Mary Howard has joined the race to receive the Fine Gael nomination at the party’s convention to decide its general election candidates, saying, “I’ve proved myself”. The councillor joins sitting TDs Joe Carey and Pat Breen and Senators Tony Mulcahy and Martin Conway in seeking the party’s nomination on September 11. Speaking to The Clare Champion, Councillor Howard said the decision to seek nomination is something that she has been thinking over for some time. “I’ve been mulling it over in my mind, I love what I do and I see my future within Fine Gael. I absolutely love my job within Clare County Council but I thought now is the time to put my hat in the ring. “I believe that I’ve proved myself over the last six years. I’ve worked hard and I have been very involved in my community. A lot of people have asked me would I go forward and when you hear that …

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Minke whale carcass not a health hazard

A whale that washed up on the North Clare coast last week will be left for “nature to take its course”, Clare County Council has confirmed. The body of the 6m-long adult female minke whale washed up on the Liscannor shore on Wednesday last. “In terms of disposal, that would normally fall under the local authority. This whale would be difficult to recover because it is a stony beach so you can’t bury it and it would be hard to bring it out. “It is not near houses and it is not on a popular beach so it is not a health hazard but we would still advise people not to touch it. It is expensive to recover whales and take them to an incinerator so we would see it as a waste of resources when it is not posing a risk,” Simon Berrow, chief science officer of the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group said (IWDG). According to the local authority, …

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