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Tag Archives: West Clare

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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Lighthouse shines as a tourist attraction

Loop Head lighthouse has consolidated its position as one of West Clare’s best tourist attractions. Figures for the period April 3 to August 31 show that 23,000 people visited the lighthouse, a 13% increase on the entire figure for 2014. This is the historic landmark’s fifth year of operation. 47.5% of the total visitor figure up to Sunday, August 30, is represented by Irish visitors, with Germany, North America, UK, France and Italy collectively accounting for 42.2% of the overall figure. Clare County Council, which manages Loop Head Lighthouse in conjunction with the Commissioners of Irish Lights (CIL), says the facility will remain open daily (10am-6pm) until October 4. For the first time ,meanwhile, the attraction will be opened to the public during weekends in October. Councillor James Breen, cathaoirleach of Clare County Council said, “The 19th century West Clare landmark is certainly benefiting from its designation as a Signature Discovery Point on the Wild Atlantic Way and as one …

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Flooding risks still exist in West Clare

Clare County Council has admitted that current sea defences in Quilty, Spanish Point and the White Strand Beach in Miltown Malbay are not sufficient to deal with a repeat of the adverse flooding in early 2014. At this week’s West Clare District meeting, Councillor Michael Hillery asked that the council “would present a progress report on the coastal protection works” at the the three locations. “The existing sea defences at all three areas are inadequate to withstand a similar storm to that of January 2014 again. To that end, funding is approved for by the Office of Public Works (OPW) for a single coastal erosion and flood risk management study for the section of coast from Quilty to Milltown Malbay, with particular focus on each of the three locations – Quilty, Spanish Point and Whitestrand,” council engineer Stephen Lahiffe explained in a written reply. “The scope of the consultant’s study must accord with the OPW’s guidance for such studies. Standard …

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‘Kilrush has turned itself around’

A “MASSIVE improvement” in Kilrush is one of the things Clare’s highest ranking garda is most proud of, he revealed recently. “I came to Clare in 2007 and in those years there didn’t seem to be anything but bad publicity about Kilrush and incidents happening there,” Chief Superintendent John Kerin stated. “Certainly, I think if people look at the crime statistics and the occurrences there over the last three years, there has been a massive reduction in incidents of crime and disorder,” he added. “Now don’t get me wrong, there are still nasty enough incidents occurring but the amount of crime as shown in the statistics for 2014 and the first four months of this year would indicate that things have improved massively,” he said. From January to April this year, there were a total of four burglaries, two thefts from vehicles, five incidents of other thefts and 11 reports of criminal damage in Kilrush. The number of burglaries there …

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bill slattery

A child ‘would have drawn better boundaries’

  A child would have drawn better boundaries for the municipal electoral areas in Clare, it has been suggested. At a meeting of Clare County Council, Councillor Bill Slattery said the West Clare Municipal District, which stretches from Ballyvaughan to Loop Head, is crazy and is actually creating a disconnect between officials in the district. “If you were to give a crayon to a child he or she would have drawn better boundaries,” he said. The council is calling on Minister Alan Kelly to review the impact of the new structures put in place last May under the reform of local government programme – Putting People First – Action Programme for Effective Local Government. West Clare independent councillor Christy Curtin moved the motion and told the adjourned April council meeting that the new organisation structures at the council’s headquarters and municipal district levels in relation to service delivery, customer response, engagement with councillors on policy implementation, cost-savings in overhead expenditure …

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Former teacher to appeal prison term

FORMER primary school principal, 81-year-old, Patrick Barry from Kilkee has moved to appeal his prison sentence for indecently assaulting 11 women while they were pupils of his in West Clare. Barry lost an appeal against conviction last week with the Court of Appeal “unable to hold” with him on any of his 12 grounds of appeal. He had pleaded not guilty to 67 charges of indecently assaulting 11 women on dates between 1964 and 1985, while they attended Moyasta National School as pupils. He was found guilty by a jury of 59 counts of indecent assault and not guilty of the remaining eight counts by direction of the trial judge Judge Gerald Keyes. Barry was given an afective sentence of 11 years imprisonment with the final five suspended by Judge Keyes at Ennis Circuit Criminal Court on November 19 2014. Speaking on behalf of the Court of Appeal on Monday, Mr Justice Garrett Sheehan said the three judge court was …

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Clare Tourism broadens its horizons

The renaming of the Clare Tourism Forum as Clare Tourism is one of a number outcomes of a structural and operational review of the group responsible for the tourism marketing and promotion of the Banner County. Clare Tourism is to engage with the wider tourism sector, including the establishment of a steering group featuring representatives of five geographical areas; namely Ennis, West Clare, North Clare, East Clare and South Clare. Among the actions outlined in its Structure & Implementation Plan is the distribution of a Festival & Events Guide and the removal of membership fees and greater engagement with key stakeholders. The series of measures and the nomination process for the proposed new steering group will be confirmed at a Clare Tourism Networking Event in Treacy’s West County Hotel Ennis this Thursday. “The goal of Clare Tourism is to create and implement an integrated tourism marketing strategy that will develop a positive and sustainable brand for County Clare and deliver …

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West Clare-China links stretch back a long way

CLARE’S links with China stretch back to the early part of the last century, when several people from the west of the county served with the Shanghai police force and in the judiciary. In a week when Clare County Council voted to accept an invitation from the vice-president of Yunnan Province to visit the region in April or May, with a view to building links between the Burren and Cliffs of Moher Geopark and the Stone Forest Geopark (Shilin Geopark), located in the south-west of China, historian Paddy Waldron has told The Clare Champion of the connection between Carrigaholt and Cross to Shanghai, in particular. Pat Keating from Fierd in Cross returned to Ireland from China in 1933 and later donated one thousand pounds for a marble altar in the Catholic church in the village, near his birthplace. He bought Plassey House, known as the White House to University of Limerick students, in 1933. He is thought to have got …

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