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Breaking News

Minister praises ‘phenomenal’ work of schools as Leaving Cert begins

MINISTER for Education Norma Foley has reassured Leaving Cert students in Clare that everything is in place to give them the best possible outcomes for their futures. Speaking on a visit to Gaelscoil Mhíchíl Cíosóg in Ennis yesterday (Tuesday, June 8), ahead of the start of the State exams, Minister Foley welcomed the fact that the vast majority of students have opted to take both written papers and predictive grading. “I’m very pleased that more than 91% of students have opted for both, so they’re giving themselves the best possible opportunity and I think that’s to be welcomed,” she said. “It’s also a tribute to the foresight of the partners in education and in particular the students themselves who advocated very strongly that there would be the two options. I would like to take the opportunity to wish the students of Clare and indeed all students every possible good luck and good fortune.” Minister Foley, who comes from a teaching …

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Minister hails crucial work of Clare Civil Defence at HQ opening

THE professionalism and dedication to duty of Clare Civil Defence was highlighted this week at the opening of the group’s new headquarters. The new facility, at the Quin Road Campus in Ennis, was officially opened this Tuesday by Simon Coveney TD, Minister for Defence and Minister for Foreign Affairs. The headquarters is a state-of-the-art, purpose-designed building that will be utilised by more than 100 Civil Defence volunteers from around the county, and includes training facilities, office accommodation, a records management centre, storage and garage. Speaking at the official opening Minister Coveney said: “I am delighted to be here on this important occasion. It is a fantastic facility and a tribute to everyone who has been involved in this project. “We have some of the Civil Defence volunteer community here and I would like to take this opportunity to pay tribute to them. “Clare Civil Defence has undertaken 300 separate Covid-19 related tasks, and multiple other roles including a number of …

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Shannon airport

Action urged on new Group chair

McNamara ribs Tanaiste over previous role in Shannon appointments SHANNON Group badly needs to see a new chairperson appointed, Clare TD Michael McNamara told the Dáil last week. He also taunted the Tanaiste regarding the role he played in having Rose Hynes reappointed as its chair in the past. “It has been an extraordinarily difficult year for Shannon Airport. Throughout much, if not all, of the past year, it has not had a chair for its board of directors. “Strategic decisions need to be made at Shannon regarding its aviation business but also in respect of Shannon Heritage and its future. The chair of a board of directors is there to provide strategic guidance,” he said. “When the Tánaiste was Taoiseach, Shane Ross was his Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, and I am told he wrote a book about the experience. “He rang the then chair of Shannon Airport to tell her he was not going to continue her …

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Stage is set for Clare’s Cruinniú na nÓg events

CHILDREN and young people across Clare are gearing up for a celebration of youthful creativity on Saturday, June 12. Cruinniú na nÓg is a flagship initiative of the Creative Ireland Programme’s Creative Youth plan. Among its local support organisations are Creative Ireland Clare and Clare County Council. Cruinniú is a component of the already well-established annual programme of activities organised by the Library and Arts Service for children and young adults. Recognising the cultural vibrancy in Clare, the Council has mobilised a strong Creative Ireland Culture Team to deliver the programme in the county. Helen Walsh, Clare County Library is the Creative Ireland Coordinator and Sheila Quinn is the Curator of the programme. Across the county, artists and creative practitioners have been busy working with young people to produce 24 events, which will be hosted online on June 12. Highlights of the local programme of events include a film by Fanore NS, entitled The Magic of the Sea. It incorporates …

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Clare has lowest Fair Deal rate in Ireland

FEARS have been expressed constructing new long stay residential facilities will no longer be attractive in Clare after a BDO survey revealed the county has the lowest Fair Deal rate in the country. Latest figures for the Fair Deal, which provides financial support to people in long-term nursing home care, shows that support for patients in Clare is the lowest in the country at €930.20 per week. This is €281.60 less per week per bed than Dublin, where the highest rate is paid and totals €951,808 less per annum for an average size Irish nursing home. Report lead author, Brian McEnery, Partner and Head of Advisory at BDO Ireland said that the system for the assessment of the Fair Deal rate is fundamentally flawed and needs to shift from a county by county assessment to a “care need” one. “Someone in a Clare nursing home with acute care needs may be getting significantly less support than someone in Dublin with …

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Aisling goes viral after pandemic

Aisling Drennan found a new audience for, and engagement with, her work online after the pandemic struck THIS time last year Clare artist Aisling Drennan was facing into an uncertain future with all of her scheduled exhibitions were cancelled due to Covid-19. However, the Lisdoonvarna born, London-based abstract painter has managed to turn this setback into an opportunity and is now showcasing her works all over the world and expanding into new markets. Recalling when her shows were cancelled last year she says, “I just felt that everything had fallen apart and I didn’t know how to pick the pieces up and mend them back together. “I don’t think I’ve ever felt like that – a pure sense of loss of control. Of course, countless people also felt the same in the face of uncertainty.” However, it wasn’t long before she decided to take positive action. “There are times when you have to stand back from a situation and assess …

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Day-long disruption to Clare communities’ water supply

ESSENTIAL water network improvement work may cause supply disruption in Miltown Malbay-Mullagh area in the coming weeks with substantial works scheduled for this Wednesday. Irish Water, working in partnership with Clare County Council, is carrying out water main improvement work between Mullagh and Milltown Malbay. In order to progress this essential work, there may be disruption to water supplies in the area this Wednesday, June 9 from 10am to 10pm and Wednesday, June 16, from 10am to 4pm. These works will impact water supply primarily to Milltown Malbay village but will also impact on Spanish Point and surrounding areas. These works may also impact on all group schemes fed from the supply including Rinnen and Glendine schemes. The map pictured outlines areas where consumers will be affected. Given the volume of tie-in connection works required on June 9 and a planned water outage from 10am to 10 pm, customers within the areas marked both red and green will more than …

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Tulla students raise Barretstown funds in memory of Labhaoise

SCHOOLMATES of the late Tulla teenager, Labhaoise Fitzgerald, have raised €10,000 for one of her favourite charities, Barretstown. The 17-year-old passed away in January after a six-year battle with an aggressive brain tumour. The pandemic restrictions in place at the time of Labhaoise’s passing meant fellow students at St Joseph’s Secondary School were unable to fully pay their respects to someone who was hugely popular and highly regarded. When they returned to school in March, they set about a virtual mountain climb in her memory and to support a charity for which Labhaoise was a passionate advocate right up to her final days. “The whole school was involved and really wanted to carry on Labhaoise’s message,” explained class teacher, Donna Fitzgerald. “We set a target of €3,000 and it’s an incredible feeling to have raised more than three times that. Different classes and the staff chose a mountain and had to clock up the steps it would take to climb …

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