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Dramatic rise in ‘wild camping’

IT is perhaps the busiest year yet for staycations, and around west and north Clare there is far more ‘wild camping’ than seen previously. So called wild camping happens when visitors base themselves away from designated facilities, and Ennistymon Municipal District Councillor Shane Talty said 2020 has seen a huge rise in it. “It’s a feature at the moment and there seems to be a huge increase in it, particularly in the north of the county, in Fanore, Craggagh, along by the shore there. There’s some of it going on at weekends in Liscannor, around the pier and out around Clahane, there’s more of it around Lahinch. “It’s far more noticeable than ever before, accommodation is literally booked out, I think people are making a decision that they’re still going to travel and stay if they can at all. The handiest option when accommodation is booked out, or maybe people are priced out, is a tent.” Unfortunately some of those …

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Saturday update: 200 new confirmed Covid-19 cases

A TOTAL of 200 Covid-19 cases have been confirmed nationally today (Saturday, August 15). Clare is among the counties where new cases have been reported, however the worst affected county is Dublin, with 56 cases. There have been no new deaths reported to the Health Protection Surveillance Centre. There has now been a total of 1,774 COVID-19 related deaths in Ireland. As of midnight Friday, August 14, the HPSC has been notified of 200 confirmed cases of COVID-19. There is now a total of 27,191* confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ireland.  Of the cases notified today; 103 are men / 96 are women 68% are under 45 years of age 68 are confirmed to be associated with outbreaks or are close contacts of a confirmed case 25 cases have been identified as community transmission 56 in Dublin, 81 in Kildare, 13 in Tipperary, 8 in Limerick, 6 Laois, 6 in Galway, 5 in Kilkenny, 5 in Meath and the rest …

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“I wouldn’t be surprised if they didn’t take any action”

A REPORT issued by the Irish Refugee Council has shown that 55% of respondents in the Direct Provision system feel unsafe, while half are unable to socially distance themselves from other residents. It also said that 42% shared a bedroom with a non-family member and 46% share a bathroom with a person or persons from outside their family. Bulelani Mfaco, a member of the Movement of Asylum Seekers of Ireland, lives in the Direct Provision centre at Knockalisheen in Meelick and he said he is not surprised with the findings. “We’ve been raising these issues since March really that people feel unsafe. We are still sharing bathrooms in Knockalisheen, still having to use communal toilets. We all have to go and get our food in the canteen, we all have to use the same tea making facilities. You have to queue for meals three times a day in the canteen.” It is unsurprising to him that Direct Provision centres have …

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Concern over ‘stigma’ discouraging Covid checks

AN ENNIS doctor is urging people with any symptoms of respiratory, or other infections, to see their GP and get tested for Covid-19, if advised to do so. Dr Máire Finn of Ennis Medical said people are presenting with a range of different symptoms and that there is a growing list of signs of Covid-19, as the scientific and health communities learn more about the disease. “Our knowledge of the symptoms is developing all the time,” Dr Finn said. “At first, we were aware of a very defined set. We have since seen people coming in with urinary symptoms and gastro-intestinal symptoms which have been linked to Covid-19. We’ve even seen an appendicitis case, where the Covid test came back positive. It’s difficult to tell if that was coincidental or if the appendicitis was triggered by the virus. Right now, we’re looking at any infective symptoms as potential indicators. As GPs, we will triage people and assess who needs to …

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PPE donation protecting the common good

NURSING homes across Clare to from benefit from a donation of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), secured after a fundraising drive coordinated by the Midwest Hospital Campaign. The initiative was prompted by concern at the start of the pandemic about the difficulty in accessing supplies of PPE, particularly for nursing homes and other congregated settings. “The donation will be especially important now that visiting has begun once again at nursing homes and there’s even more demand for PPE,” said Noeleen Moran, one of the coordinators. Some of the PPE was sourced through a network of contacts for manufacturers in Poland, while more was handmade by hundreds of individual volunteers and groups across Clare, including the Irish Countrywomen’s’ Association (ICA). Hilary Tonge of the Midwest Hospital Campaign said the effort to secure PPE had involved many groups and individuals from across the county. “When the pandemic was declared, there was a huge fear that there would not be enough PPE,” she said. …

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“Useful talks” between Shannon Group and Noonan

MINISTER of State for Heritage Malcolm Noonan met with Shannon Group management at Bunratty Castle & Folk Park on Wednesday morning, with the key tourist destination still due to close at the end of the month. He described the talks as “very useful” and Shannon Group representatives were also quite happy with how they had gone. Afterwards Mr Noonan said he couldn’t confirm that Shannon Group will receive the multi million support package it says it requires to keep going into the autumn. “It’s not my call, I’m here in relaiton specifically to heritage and the heritage of Bunratty. That’s a wider cabinet and government decision and it’ll be framed around the budgetary process. Again, I will make my own representations through that process on what I see is required from the heritage aspect, but it’s a bigger question for Government at this stage.” He said that Government are dealing with a unique situation and are trying to give what …

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67 new Covid-19 cases, 9 in Clare

THE latest figures from the Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HPSC) today (Friday, August 14) show nine newly confirmed cases of Covid-19 in Clare. There have been a further 5 in Limerick and the national total for today, nationally, is 67. There have been no new deaths reported to the There has now been a total of 1,774 COVID-19 related deaths in Ireland. As of midnight Thursday (August 13), the HPSC has been notified of 67 confirmed cases of COVID-19. There is now a total of 26,995* confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ireland. Of the cases notified today; 35 are men / 32 are women 70% are under 45 years of age 38 are confirmed to be associated with outbreaks or are close contacts of a confirmed case 16 cases have been identified as community transmission 18 in Dublin, 17 in Kildare, 9 in Clare, 5 in Limerick, and the rest of the 18 cases are in Carlow, Cork, Donegal, Laois, …

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“You get carried away sometimes”

INAGH based Senator Róisín Garvey has apologised after comments she made about Green Party deputy leader Catherine Martin in a Whatsapp group. Reports emerged last week that after Eamon Ryan, who Ms Garvey supported, had defeated Ms Martin in the Green Party leadership contest, she wrote, “She tried to bring him down and failed. F*** her, a win is a win. Well done everyone”. In a statement to the Clare Champion Ms Garvey said that there is no animosity between herself and the party’s deputy leader. “Myself and Catherine Martin have always got on and we still get on well and have moved past that comment from a few weeks ago. In fact she has taken up my invite to holiday in Clare and has accepted the offer and I will be showing her and her family around our beautiful county the week after next. As Minister for Tourism it is great she has decided to holiday in Clare.” She …

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