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West Clare

Northern education minister to attend INTO conference

Minister for Education in Northern Ireland, John O Dowd is to address the INTO conference in Ennis in April, is has been confirmed. He will speak on Tuesday, April 7 following the address of the Minister for Education and Skills Jan O’Sullivan. The INTO general secretary, Sheila Nunan will respond to both ministers on behalf of approximately 850 delegates, representing 33,000 primary teachers in the south and 7,000 teachers in the north, at Treacys West County Hotel. The Conference will be addressed at its opening session on the previous day by INTO president, Sean McMahon from Mullagh and and Tom Healy, director of the Nevin Economic Research Institute (NERI). Tom has previously worked in the Economic and Social Research Institute, the Northern Ireland Economic Research Centre, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, the National Economic and Social Forum and the Department of Education and Skills.

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Defendants ordered to avoid Kilrush post office

TWO men in their twenties and two women in their thirties with Kilrush addresses appeared before Ennis District Court this afternoon charged with breaches of the Consumer Credit Act of 1995. The four were Diana Casey, 12 Wood Road, Kilrush; Patrick Casey, Beverley Hills View, Kilkee Road, Kilrush; Ann Marie O’Brien, 12 Sycamore Drive, Kilrush and James O’Brien, 28 Chapel Drive, Kilrush. All were remanded on bail until March 18, when they will appear before Ennis District Court once more. Similar conditions were imposed on all four in relation to bail. The defendants are required to sign on at Kilrush Garda Station on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. They are also required not to come within 100 metres of Kilrush Post Office between 8.30am and 1pm on Tuesday and Thursday, nor to have any contact with the complainants.  

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McInerney joins race for Fianna Fáil selection

Former Ennis Chamber CEO, Rita McInerney has confirmed her intention to seek a place on the Clare Fianna Fáil ticket to contest the next general election. Ms McInerney, who took a one-year sabbatical from her Ennis Chamber post to complete a masters in politics at University of Limerick, is looking forward to seeking the support of cumman members ahead of the Fianna Fáil Dáil Convention in Clare. The Doonbeg shop owner is facing stiff opposition from a number of candidates, after a Clare Champion survey revealed eight out of the 12 local Fianna Fáil county councillors expressed a preference for running three candidates at the next election. It is expected that Fianna Fáil leader, Micheál Martin, and the party’s national constituency committee will select Clare as one of the battlegrounds for a female candidate, in an effort to meet the national 30% gender quota requirement. Fianna Fáil Deputy Timmy Dooley said he will be putting his name forward for re-election …

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Musician Hill feared for his life during assault

A CONNEMARA builder will be sentenced in July for an assault on Clare traditional Irish musician, Noel Hill in a pub toilet seven years ago, which has left the victim with life-long injuries. Michael Folan, 55, from Teach Mór, Lettermullen, County Galway, had initially pleaded not guilty to a charge of intentionally or recklessly causing serious harm to Mr Hill, 56, contrary to Section 4 of the Non-Fatal Offences Against the Person Act 1997, at Tí Padraig Mairtín Beag in Leitir Mór, Connemara on St Stephen’s Day, 2008, when his trial opened before a jury at Galway Circuit Criminal Court last November. He changed his plea to guilty on the second day of the trial, after Mr Hill gave harrowing evidence of the injuries he sustained on the night to a stunned jury. Plastic surgeon, Patrick McCann had told the jury that Mr Hill’s left eye socket had been pushed back into his skull “like an egg in an eggcup” …

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Wheels turning for West Clare Railway expansion

AN Bórd Pleanála has given the go ahead to plans that include the expansion of the museum at the West Clare Railway in Moyasta. Jackie Whelan, who is behind the establishment of the facility, said this week’s news is the culmination of a 16 year battle. “We got the news on Monday. Since we started looking for planning permission, including a road crossing and lights, it has taken 16 years to get this far,” he confirmed. “It means that we’re going building a new museum there now. It will be 180ft x 100ft. We have the largest fleet of railway antique vehicles in the country. It will on the other side of the road, towards Kilkee and Kilrush. We have full planning permission for a road crossing,” Mr Whelan added. The government closed the loss-making West Clare Railway in 1961. In 2010, An Bórd Pleanála rejected the expansion of the museum on grounds concerning road safety.

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Fr Des appointed Killaloe diocese administrator

Fr Des Hillery, a native of Miltown Malbay, has been elected as Administrator of the Diocese of Killaloe. This follows the installation of Archbishop Kieran O’Reilly as Archbishop of Cashel and Emly on Sunday last, when the Diocese of Killaloe officially became vacant. At a meeting of the College of Consultors of the Diocese Fr Hillery, who is parish priest in Nenagh, was elected to his new post. A diocesan administrator has responsibility for administering the day-to-day affairs of the diocese while a new bishop is awaited. On Wednesday evening, Fr Hillery, a member of a well-known West Clare family, said, “I am privileged to accept this new role and hope to continue the good work of Archbishop Kieran O’Reilly and Bishop Willie Walsh in encouraging us to respond to the challenges of the Gospel. I hope to do all that I can to facilitate the continued implementation of the Pastoral Plan for the Diocese of Killaloe, which recognises our …

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Two gardaí for Kilmihil station

FOLLOWING the closure of Lissycasey Garda Station, Clare Garda Chief Superintendent John Kerin has said that he intends having two gardaí stationed at the re-opened Kilmihil station, which will be up and running on March 1. “There is going to be a full-time garda back there and, hopefully, a second one. That’s what Kilrush Superintendent Seamus Nolan wants to do and it’s something that I’ve said to him. If he can spare a garda from somewhere else and reallocate to Kilmihil to have two gardaí there, it certainly would be something I’d be in favour of,” Chief Superintendent Kerin confirmed. He said Kilmihil needs a full-time garda presence in the village. “Up to a couple of years ago, you had a garda station in Kilmihil, Doonbeg and Lissycasey. We’d see Kilmihil as being a central location for the three places and of the three centres, from a garda perspective, it would be by far the busiest. Perhaps there are more …

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Martin’s Clonea to Cooraclare fundraising cycle

COORACLARE man, Martin Donnelly, who lives in Meath, has revealed details of a fundraising cycle on June 20 and 21. All proceeds from the two-day cycle, which will start in Clonea and conclude in Cooraclare, will be split between the West Clare Mini Marathon Cancer Fund and St Francis Hospice in Dublin 15. “This cycle is something that has been in my mind for a while,” Martin Donnelly told The Clare Champion. “You’re not going to cycle all that way without having a purpose to it. So I came up with the idea of calling it a Cycle In Remembrance. So people will do this in memory of somebody close to them who has passed away and, at the same time, raise much-needed funds for West Clare Cancer Care and St Francis Hospice in Blanchardstown, which is very close to Clonea. There are 60,000 to 80,000 people living in Dublin 15 and they have opened a six-bed hospice. They all …

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