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Clare teacher over the moon with prestigious US scholarship

A South-East Clare primary school teacher has scooped a prestigious Fulbright scholarship to study in the USA. Eimear Millane has won the Foreign Language Teaching Assistantship (FLTA) scholarship to teach in the University of Connecticut for ten months. One of the 40  Fulbright Irish Awardees, Eimear was presented with her award at a ceremony in Iveagh House, Dublin, recently in recognition of the excellence of her study and research. In an interview with the Clare Champion, Eimear recalled she completed an interview for this scholarship last January, having applied the previous October. Under the Fulbright Programme, she will be teaching Irish as a minority language in the University of Connecticut for ten months, having opted to take a career break from her current job as a primary school teacher in Bunscoil Bhríde in Co. Kildare, where she oversees the Coiste Gaelach. The scholarship covers her flights and accommodation, while she will also be paid during her time as a teacher. …

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Clare will have no fear of Derry in Croker crunch match

Having taken 30 years to contest their previous two championship appearances in GAA Headquarters, the prospect of lining out on the hallowed turf for the second time in three weeks is now a glorious reality for Clare this Saturday. Indeed, with both the footballers and hurlers lining out in Croke Park for the first time in the same season, it may be a nightmare for supporters’ pockets but the stuff of dreams when it comes to the development of both squads. The thing is that despite being overrun by Derry in the second half of their rare National League clash in late February, Clare won’t fear taking on the Ulster champions. All because Derry, despite the jolt in confidence of a first provincial crown in 24 years, are equally as unaccustomed to the environs of Jones’ Road on championship days. After all, drift back three or four seasons and Derry were languishing in Division 4 and found it difficult to …

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‘It could be our year this year that we take off on a bit of a run’

No Clareman has more Croke Park experience than Enda Coughlan — as a player and a selector the Kilmurry Ibrickane legend goes all the way back to when he was just 18 and starting out on his inter-county career, writes Joe Ó Muircheartaigh, looking ahead to this Saturday’s All-Ireland quarter-final. “IT’S still only a field at the end of the day,” muses Enda Coughlan when talking about Croke Park, but he quickly qualifies his statement by explaining what makes the place different and how it plays differently. “You get used to playing on different pitches,” he explains, “and when you’re not used to it, it’s different for a while. I’ve been lucky enough to play there and it’s the feel of it — it seems to play bigger than probably everywhere else. “There’s a tricky wind coming in there and it’s getting used to it. When you don’t get to play there that often it takes time to settle so …

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GALLERY: Saddling up for the 400th Spancilhill Fair

The historic Spancilhill Horse Fair returned on Thursday having been cancelled for the last two years due to the pandemic. It was almost mothballed permanently, due to insurance issues, but in April, an eleventh hour intervention by Clare County Council secured its future and paved the way for celebrations this year to mark the 400th anniversary of the world renowned horse fair. Thursday’s event was as busy and colourful as ever, as our photos show.

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Russell and Clare colleagues set minds on siege of Derry

What a time to be a Clare supporter! As Brian Lohan’s men continue to show the grit and determination that were a hallmark of the full back’s own career, the Clare footballers are looking to secure back to back Championship wins in Croke Park. Although that prospect seemed unlikely when falling short against Limerick in the Munster Championship, Colm Collins’ side have regrouped and after a mesmerising comeback against Roscommon, they now stand on the brink of reaching the final four. With Ulster champions Derry standing in their way, Clare will enter as underdogs. Ciarán Russell is aware the task at hand is a difficult one but he hopes that his side can build upon the hurlers’ recent success and give the county’s supporters another day out in GAA HQ after this Saturday. “There is a lot of crossover between clubs so I’d know a few of the lads. I’m delighted to see them do well. It’s great for the …

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Former Bus Eireann Inspector Drives To Top Of Council From Killaloe

A FORMER Bus Eireann bus inspector from Killaloe has driven to the top of Clare County Council. Councillor Tony O’Brien was elected unopposed as Clare’s next first citizen without a vote as part of the power-sharing arrangement that was first brokered in 2004 at the annual general meeting in Ennis on Friday.   The former Smith O’Brien GAA club secretary replaced Councillor P J Ryan, who was lauded for being a great ambassador for the county over the past year. Councillor O’Brien was proposed by his Fianna Fáil colleague, Councillor Pat Hayes and seconded by Joe Cooney, Fine Gael, while Councillor Gerry Flynn, Independent also expressed his support. Councillor Ann Norton was elected as vice-chairperson for the next year, succeeding Councillor Joe Killeen. In his wide-ranging address following his election, Councillor O’Brien pledged to work in partnership with the Shannon Group to attract further investment and more traffic through Shannon Airport. The Killaloe resident promised to continue progressing the proposed …

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Ennis artist helps resurrect famine era sculpture of Christ

A DECAYED statue dating back to Famine times has been restored and reinstalled in Portumna’s Workhouse cemetery thanks to the help of Ennis-based artist Larisa K Bevillard and Moycullen-based Klaus Dieter Von Kerckoff. The statue, depicting the crucifixion of Jesus, had been lying abandoned and badly damaged at the cemetery of Portumna’s Workhouse for decades. The pair were tasked to carry out the repair work by Galway County Council and the newly restored statue has now been reinstalled back in its original location. Ms Bevillard told The Champion it was “horrifying” to see the damage to the statue recalling it “crumbled extensively due in part to its composition and  mixture of excessive sand with insufficient cement”. She explained that as part of the restoration the remains of the statue were first brought to Ennis, before Covid-19 restrictions, for initial works. It was partially restored in Ennis with Ms Bevillard rebuilding the fingers and hands before it was brought to Moycullen …

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Fond memories recalled as Clare school closes after 143 years

THIS Friday will be a poignant day at Clohanbeg National School, as it closes its doors for the last time, after providing education to the people of the area since 1879. While the school had 12 pupils for the 2021/22 academic year, there would only have been four in September and it will be amalgamating with Cree.  Principal Pat Comber is retiring after 34 years at Clohanbeg and he said that numbers had been sliding in recent years. “There’s a lot of history in the school, it’s been open since 1879. Through thick and thin it stayed open, but for the last few years we have struggled with numbers. “We’re a standalone school out in the countryside and it’s hard to compete with other schools if you have only one or two coming in a year. “Children don’t want to be in a class on their own, and you wouldn’t blame their parents for not wanting it, it’s easy to …

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