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Breaking News

Mid-West patient waiting times ‘a national disgrace’

The fact that almost 58,000 people are now waiting for care across hospitals in the Mid-West has been condemned as a “national disgrace” by a local lobby group. The Mid-West Hospital Campaign (MWHC) has claimed removing 24-hour casualty cover from Ennis and Nenagh Hospitals in April 2009 has resulted in 58,774 people waiting for public hospital inpatient/day treatment, GI endoscopies or an outpatient appointment with a consultant throughout the region. New figures released by the HSE confirm that one in every three (33%) approved permanent Hospital Consultant posts in the UL Hospitals’ Group are either vacant or filled on a temporary or agency basis – an all-time high 68 out of 206 approved Consultant posts3 – an increase of 16 posts not filled as needed since November 2020. Outpatient waiting lists at hospitals in the Mid-West region have almost doubled, with a 94% hike since 2015. The number of ‘long waiters’ on the list to be assessed by a consultant …

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Clare woman named Ireland’s ambassador to Singapore

A CLARECASTLE woman has officially become Ireland’s first female Ambassador to Singapore. Ambassador Sarah McGrath last week presented her credentials to President Halimah Yacob, the first female president of Singapore. Ambassador McGrath is also responsible for Ireland’s relations with Brunei Darussalam. In her welcome message Ambassador McGrath stated, “I am thrilled to have moved to the Little Red Dot and proud to be the first Irish woman to hold the role of Ambassador to the Republic of Singapore. “Representing Ireland in Singapore is an honour and a privilege and I look forward to broadening and deepening the many connections which already exist between our two island nations during my time here.” She continued, “I am proud to lead a small but dedicated team here at the Embassy which works in partnership with Bord Bia, Enterprise Ireland and IDA Ireland to promote Irish interests in Singapore, to build the bilateral relationship and to provide consular and visa services. “People are at …

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Tensions ratchet up around controversial wind turbine

FURTHER objections have been made to a controversial wind turbine in Parteen, for which the developer is seeking retention. The structure, which was the subject of an enforcement notice shortly after it was erected last year, remains in place, with the Council, having received Further Information (FI) on the application, expected to make a decision in the coming weeks. In response to a series of planning queries, agents for the applicant, Seamus Madden, recently provided an assurance that the turbine has never been operational. The company also supplied technical reports on predicted shadow flicker and noise, asserting that the turbine will operate in compliance with wind energy guidelines. Locals have not been reassured, however. Mirroring the public concern, reflected in more than 100 submissions on the retention application, lodged in March, the FI documentation has generated further opposition. In recent days, a raft of objections have been made. The newly-formed ‘100 Metres Tall Group’ have employed expert planner, John Bird, …

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Long village highlights local history with digital heritage trail

A GROUP in Doonbeg have developed a heritage trail featuring 29 points of interest around the Long Village. It can be accessed at walking.doonbeg.info/heritage-trail/ and it features stories, pictures and archive records from the 1901 and 1911 censuses, along with school children’s stories and pictures. Local resident Aisling Ryan said, “Burren Beo organised a heritage keeper’s course and on the back of it they gave us a little grant to go back to our community and develop a project. Three other ladies, Jacquie Wade, Elizabeth McEntee and Betty Condon, and myself put together this heritage trail.” Describing the trail, she said, “The Heritage Trail has 29 points and each one is along a walking trail, it’s along flat terrain so it’s suitable for young and old. You use the map to click on a point and it gives you a small bit of information about the place, it might be a house that used to be an old shop, it …

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Barefield NS given green light to expand outdoor facilities

A LOCAL primary school is set to expand its outdoor facilities for pupils. Barefield National School on the outskirts of Ennis has been given the green light by Clare County Council for plans to develop a 5m hurling practice wall and a school playground facility. The application for planning permission for the development was made by the Board of Management of Barefield National School. The proposed playground will have a total area of 275sqm and will be surrounded by a high green coated fence. In assessing the application, planners with Clare County Council noted that the lands are zoned for ‘community’ development and the site of the hurling wall and play area is within the curtilage off the overall school. With this in mind planners determined that the proposed development would be acceptable in principle. The hurling wall is planned to be constructed within the existing pitch / green area to the east of the school. Planners found “no adverse …

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Referrals to Clare Crusaders up 15% in one year, ‘due to Covid’

THE number of referrals to Clare Crusader’s Clinic has jumped by 15% over the last 12 months due to the impact of Covid-19, it emerged this week. Clinic managing director, Councillor Ann Norton confirmed there has been a significant increase in the demand for their therapists in the clinic. A lot of work is taking place getting their therapists ready to assist children with additional needs once the primary schools re-open. “Families with new diagnoses are constantly coming to us because they can’t access a public service. The demand was very high during our very successful summer camps. “We were very fortunate to get a number of primary school teachers who came with new ideas. We had music therapists and a yoga teacher who was available every day. A lot of work and time was put into the summer camps. “We will continue to provide the yoga teacher and music therapists once funds are there to provide the service,” she …

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Energy saving kits available to borrow from Clare libraries

Clare Library Service has announced it has Home Energy Saving Kits available to borrow in a number of libraries from this Monday, September 5. The Home Energy Saving Kit is the “ultimate toolkit that helps save energy at home”, according to the livrary service. It contains five easy-to-use tools and six practical exercises, that will allow a person to get a better understanding of the energy usage in their home, problem areas that may need attention and ways to improve energy efficiency. Energy bills can be reduced by up to 20% by implementing easy energy saving measures and could also improve the comfort of the home and helping contribute to a better environment at the same time. The tools in the kit are easy to use, they provide an interactive and tangible way to introduce the concept of energy usage into the home and a perfect way to get the whole family involved. The Home Energy Saving Kit was designed …

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Ennis Camera Club shares its ‘collective vision’ in new exhibition

WITH a shared love of photography, members of the Ennis Camera Club have brought their ‘collective vision’ together in a brand new exhibition of works currently on display in the Clare Museum. The exhibition features 25 stunning images in varying styles taken by the club’s members, who range from beginners to experienced photographers, and regularly meet in Power’s Pub, Clarecastle. In an era where images are more likely to be shared online, club chairman Mike Reen tells us members are delighted to be able to showcase their work to the public through this exhibition which runs in Ennis until September 16. “We live almost exclusively in a digital world in terms of photography. It must be that 99% of photographs are now shared digitally through social media and online. We have a sort of standing mantra within the club, ‘A photograph isn’t a photograph until you print it’. “That was something the late Gerry Ryan who founded the club always …

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