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British Empire Medal for Mary

A NORTH Clare woman was awarded an Honorary British Empire Medal recently for her contribution to her adopted home in the UK. Mary Daly from Lisdoonvarna was conferred with the award from the Queen of England in recognition of her voluntary services to the Ashford Community and the Kent Multiple Sclerosis Therapy Centre. Mary was told she was being considered for the honour in July and asked if she would accept it, if she was selected. “I had to keep it quiet, which was the hardest thing ever,” she recalled, adding that she was dying to let the secret out but “I could only tell Michael, my husband”. Official confirmation of her award came from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office by letter in recent weeks. It cited her services to the Butterfly Appeal Campaign for Multiple Sclerosis Therapy, in which she raised more than £1.6 million for the opening of a state-of-the-art MS centre. Mary emigrated from Clare in 1989 …

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‘The Outing 2015’ online film

Tourism Ireland has launched a new online film, ‘The Outing 2015’, specially created to target LGBT couples around the world. The organisation is encouraging them to come and celebrate their weddings and honeymoons in Ireland. The video was filmed last weekend at The Outing, the world’s first-ever LGBT matchmaking festival and an offshoot of the Lisdoonvarna Matchmaking Festival, which saw thousands of people descend on the North Clare town. It also features footage of the spectacular scenery in the area. To view the film, click here<https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t2SREnibYGM&feature=youtu.be>. Niall Gibbons, CEO of Tourism Ireland, said, “Research unveiled at World Travel Market last year showed the annual spend on travel by LGBT people exceeded US$200 billion for the first time in 2014. Ireland’s ‘yes’ vote in May also delivered a strong message of tolerance, respect and open-mindedness, positioning Ireland as a welcoming destination for LGBT travellers. We are delighted to unveil our latest online film, highlighting The Outing and promoting Ireland to LGBT …

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Patients sought for RTÉ medical series

A new RTÉ medical series is making its final call for people to book free doctors’ appointments in North Clare this weekend. You Should Really See a Doctor has travelled around the country with its mobile clinic over the summer and the final show in the series will be filmed in Lisdoonvarna on Saturday (September 19). Dr Pixie McKenna and Dr Phil Kieran will be at the Matchmaking Festival, offering on-the-spot consultations and health checks. “We are particularly interested in hearing from people who have researched their symptoms online and would like a real doctor’s advice. “Most of us have been there; you feel a mild pain in the head and next thing you’re reading an internet article about a rare tropical disease that you think you might have. From stomach problems to sleep issues to skin problems – the real doctors want to hear from you,” a spokesperson for the show stated. The doctors are happy to hear from …

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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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Investment needed in Spa Wells

Investment is needed if Lisdoonvarna’s Spa Wells is to become “a much bigger attraction” and drive tourism in North Clare during the off-peak season, according to a Clare TD. Members of Lisdoonvarna Fáilte highlighted their plans for the historic Spa Wells to Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform, Brendan Howlin, at a meeting organised by Labour TD Michael McNamara. The minister met with the community group on his recent visit to Clare to officially open Doolin Pier. “Minister Howlin was very impressed with the Spa Wells in Lisdoonvarna and the work done to date to re-open these Victorian wells. He visited the pump house to see for himself the work done to date,” said Deputy McNamara. “The minister is now looking forward to receiving a feasibility study outlying plans to develop the Spa Wells in Lisdoonvarna further, at which point I am confident he will give serious consideration to investing in the project,” he added. “The Victorian Spa Wells are …

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Lisdoonvarna says I do

Lisdoonvarna is set to benefit from a massive tourism campaign, launched by Tourism Ireland just hours after the yes vote in the marriage referendum was announced. The campaign, ‘Ireland says I do’ which features a short video of The Outing LGBT festival in Lisdoonvarna, is being rolled out to nine markets, including Britain, the United States, Canada, the Nordic Region, Australia, France, Spain, Italy and Germany. Lisdoonvarna voted a resounding yes to the marriage equality referendum, polling just over 59% in favour. According to the tally taken at Ennis Courthouse on Saturday, 419 yes votes were counted in the Lisdoonvarna National School polling station, compared with 286 no votes; thirteen were spoiled. Of the valid votes, 59.4% were in favour of changing the constitution to allow marriage between two people regardless of sex. Marcus White, from the White Hotel Group said, “Bookings have already been flooding in – it is going to be one of the busiest on record. Publicity …

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North Clare woman witnesses historic handshake

A North Clare business woman was one of 150 guests invited to attend a reception in NUI Galway, honouring the first official joint visit of the Prince of Wales and his wife, the Duchess of Cornwall. Birgitta Curtin described the event as “very special”, especially given that she witnessed the historic first meeting and handshake between Prince Charles and Sinn Féin president, Gerry Adams. Deputy Adams described their handshake “as a symbol” of the progress that has been made since the Prince’s first visit to Ireland in 1995. Birgitta described the atmosphere as “very relaxed” adding that she “didn’t know it was going to happen”. “Of course then it dawned on me that this was extremely significant,” she recalled. While the handshake and brief introduction, witnessed by Birgitta, lasted just 30 seconds, the pair later held a 10-minute private meeting. Prince Charles, in his first speech of the couple’s four-day visit to both sides of the Irish border, told the …

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Clare title for Lisdoonvarna

Mary Immaculate College, Lisdoonvarna 3-9 Ennistymon CBS 2-9 North Clare neighbours and rivals Mary Immaculate College Lisdoonvarna and Ennistymon CBS produced a most entertaining hour’s football at a well appointed Corofin on Friday morning when they clashed in the final of the Clare colleges senior football championship. [doptg id=”67″]When Pat Cosgrove sounded the final whistle, Mary Immaculate College were deservingly in front of their neighbours who went into the game as favourites. Having hit 2-5 without reply in a fifteen minute spell in the opening half, Ennistymon CBS looked set to justify favouritism as they opened an eight point lead. However, the Lisdoonvarna outfit put in a strong finish to the half hitting 2-1 in the closing five minutes to trail by just the minimum with wind advantage to come. Ennistymon will point to missed chances in the opening half as a reason for this loss and while it was certainly a factor, the winners were the better balanced side …

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