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Shannon

New helicopter touches down for coast guard

THE Irish Coast Guard and CHC marked the arrival of a new search and rescue helicopter at Shannon this week. CHC operate services for the Irish Coast Guard and managing director Mark Kelly said the new helicopter will make a huge difference.“It’s replacing the S61, which is in service in Shannon since 1991. It’ll go into service on July 1 and it’s adding quite a bit to our capabilities. This machine is capable of going out and doing a rescue in the region of 300 miles off the coast, whereas our current machine is capable of doing only 180 miles off the coast. It’s capable of flying in conditions that the older one wasn’t. We’ve a full paramedic set-up in the back, which is the same as what you’d get in a road ambulance. There is defibrillation and those types of medical services. It’ll be here for probably the next three decades.”Director of the Irish Coast Guard Chris Reynolds agreed …

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Joe looks back on Shannon garda career

Working in Shannon since 1984, Joe Burke retired from An Garda Síochána at the end of 2011. The Kilkenny man won a Minor All-Ireland Championship in 1972, alongside a certain Brian Cody and the following year he joined the gardaí. His hurling career fell victim to rounds of transfers and shifts that weren’t suited to training and matches but he took an awful lot of satisfaction from the job.“I looked forward to going in every day because it was always evolving, no two days were the same,” he said.When he came to Shannon, the garda station wasn’t in the centre of town, something he didn’t feel was very suitable. “The station was in the industrial estate and really it didn’t serve the needs of the community because it was so remote. It was quiet and uneventful and Shannon by and large was a peaceful, law-abiding place.”He has one extremely sad memory from his career. “The biggest shock I got was …

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Retail sector needs ‘a lot of TLC’ in coming years

WITH retailers all over the country facing a particularly difficult January, Helen Downes of Shannon Chamber says the sector will “need a lot of TLC” over the next few years.Since Christmas well-known sporting goods outlet Dressco, has closed its doors. This business had been in operation for well over 30 years and was one of the most well known outlets in Shannon. On the positive side a new sweet shop opened just before Christmas. Last year the arrival of  Buy Lo to SkyCourt provided a boost to the centre, but it didn’t last long as it was gone again well before the end of the year.However a replacement anchor tenant is close to agreeing to come in and it’s hoped that there will be some news on this front in the next few weeks. Securing major retailers is important to the store as a whole as they bring in additional shoppers to the centre.Ms Downes said it is difficult to …

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Wastewater treatment plant delayed

LACK of finance is likely to delay work on the upgrade of the local wastewater/sewerage treatment plant. At this week’s meeting of Shannon area councillors, Councillor Gerry Flynn put forward a motion asking that the “Water Section of Clare County Council provide a report in relation to the wastewater/treatment plant upgrade and provide information concerning tenders and start dates for various parts of the project”.In a written reply to the meeting, senior executive engineer Eugene O’Shea stated, “As previously advised tenders were invited some time ago for the Advance Works Contract that includes upgrades to pumping stations 2, 4A, 5A and 12. These tenders have been received and are currently being assessed. Due to financial difficulties it is not possible at this stage to provide details on a start date for this project.”Councillor Flynn asked where the financial difficulties were, and Mr O’Shea said they lay with the council. “The financial difficulties are with the council initially,” he claimed.He said …

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Methodist Church withdraws planning application

A PLANNING application to facilitate a place of worship for the local Methodist Church in Shannon was withdrawn, just before a decision on it was due to be made.The trustees of the Methodist Church in Ireland made an application for a single-storey extension to the rear of the existing church house at 5, The Grove, Shannon and for change of use and refurbishment of an existing outbuilding in the rear garden to church house use also.The application attracted two objections, one signed by a number of residents of the housing estate in question and the other coming from An Taisce.The residents outlined a number of concerns in their submission. “We wish to formally object to the proposed ground-floor extension at No 5 The Grove, Tullyglass, Shannon. Our objection is on the grounds that the development would cause significant harm to our residential amenities in The Grove by reason of its purposes, sighting, scale and design,” they claimed.“The submitted planning application …

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Soccer club helps break down barriers for disabled players

  LOCAL soccer club Shannon Town United now have a powerchair team drawing players from throughout the Mid-West.The team are training at St Patrick’s Comprehensive School and will play their first match under the Shannon Town United banner at UL on Saturday. There are 10 players on the team’s squad and the games are four-aside.Andy Legge, chairman of Shannon Town United, said he is very pleased with the move. “We were approached by the FAI to help out a group of disabled athletes in the Clare and Limerick region and get involved in powerchair soccer. It was something that was put to the committee and our committee endorsed it wholeheartedly.”He said the club has received a lot of help from both the FAI and Enable Ireland, while he is eagerly awaiting the first competitive game. “For the club, it’s a phenomenal development, it’s something that hasn’t been done before. On Saturday, we’re in the University of Limerick, we’re in Division …

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Chris all fired up over household charge

SEVERAL years of austerity hasn’t led to Greek protests in Ireland but there is still plenty of unfocused anger, which Chris Quinn is hoping to tap into next weekend.The Cluain Airne resident is organising a public meeting to oppose the €100 household charge, which will be held in Tullyvarraga Hall on Saturday at 1.30pm.Mr Quinn hails from Ballyhea, the North Cork village where weekly protest marches against the bailout of the banks have been taking place since last March. He said the charge is unjust and public protest is the way to fight it. “The household charge is something I don’t believe is fair. As people have said to me, you can bitch and moan in a pub or on Facebook but the time for bitching and moaning is over, it’s time to do something. The Government tried to screw the pensioners and the pensioners fought back. People power is the only way to get anything done anymore. The country …

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Draft local area plan consultations to take place at SkyCourt

A SERIES of public consultations in relation to the Draft Shannon Town and Environs Local Area Plan 2012-2018 will take place next week.This is the first stand-alone town plan to be produced for Shannon and it was put on public display last month.Public consultations will take place at Unit A16 (Shaney Macs) at SkyCourt on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday from 2pm to 5.30pm and again on Thursday, January 19 from 3pm until 7.30pm. Another public consultation will be held at Rineanna House in the Shannon Free Zone on Friday, January 20 from 12.30pm to 3.30pm.Councillor Gerry Flynn, chairperson of the Shannon Electoral Area said a chance is being offered to members of the public to influence the future of their town. “The public consultation process presents members of the public with a valuable opportunity to have their say on the future development of their local community. I would encourage people from Shannon and its environs to inspect the Draft Local …

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Silt build-up blamed for Springfield flooding

UNCHECKED built-up islands of silt and vegetation on the Old River Shannon is causing flooding during periods of very high rainfall, local residents have warned.In a submission to consultants Jacobs Consulting Engineers, who have completed a Preliminary Flood Risk Assessment (PFRA), residents in Springfield, Clonlara, stated the River Shannon downsteam of the Parteen Weir is unable to take a high volume of water during flooding because of the unchecked build-up of silt and vegetation.Commenting on the ESB report submitted to the PFRA, the group said it understands that more water was spilled down the Old River Shannon than through the Headrace during each flood.“The Mulkear River also flows into the Shannon just above the channel restriction. This river is a fast-flowing river and during flood times when it meets the Shannon flood water, the volume of water is such that it has nowhere to go, so it backs up to us at Springfield and Illaunyregan.“As part of the study, which …

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Low number of third-level students in Shannon

A LARGE proportion of Shannon’s young people don’t go on to third-level education, according to the new draft development plan for the town.

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