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Clare scientist has skin in the ethical game

Clonlara woman is combining her scientific training and sustainable ethos to effect change in business of skincare IT IS often said that the global beauty industry can have an ugly side. Heavily reliant on plastic packaging, the sector produces up to 120 billion units every year. And that’s before you get to the advertising hype, airbrushed images and increasing pressure to chase after perfection and eternal youth. One woman, who is determined to tackle some of those issues is Dr Ruth Kelly from Clonlara. The former environmental scientist is a pioneer in the emerging area of ethical beauty. It’s something that she believes passionately in, as do an increasing number of consumers. Ethically produced beauty products have become increasingly attractive, as they are more sustainable and can offer real skin benefits, as opposed to empty promises. “Women are under constant pressure to look ten years younger and really, that’s just rubbish,” – Dr Ruth Kelly. “We should look at time …

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Mountshannon Arts opens all channels to eager audience

AUDIENCES will make a welcome return to the Mounsthannon Arts Festival later this month, but arts enthusiasts will have to be content with staying in the open air in view of Covid-19 restrictions. Last year, key elements of the festival programme had to transfer online, on-air and to a special ‘sound sanctuary’ on the shores of Lough Derg, due to the Covid-19 pandemic. This year, the organisers are hoping to provide a mixture of online, on-air and open air events, with an eclectic mixture of entertainment for all the family, subject to Covid-19 guidelines. Nestled on the western banks of Lough Derg, Mountshannon is one of Ireland’s most beautiful villages, and has an ancient monastic settlement just off shore, on Inis Cealtra, or Holy Island as it is known locally. The Mountshannon Arts Festival is celebrating 25 years since its inception and appreciates the assistance it received from all its supporters during this time. Each year brings a new collection …

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Clare people urged to Bike4Life for World Suicide Prevention Day this month

CLARE people are being urged to get on their bike on Friday September 10, World Suicide Prevention Day, to raise awareness and funds for suicide prevention. Cycle Against Suicide are inviting local communities to join its “Bike4Life: One Day – One Goal”. Held annually, Bike4Life is part of the fundraising effort of Cycle Against Suicide, an organisation dedicated to greater public awareness and community-based assistance for individuals at risk. “If you or someone you know needs help, reach out. Speaking up to a trusted person about depression, suicide or grief is the first step to saving a life,” Caroline Lafferty, Cycle Against Suicide CEO stated. “The risk of suicide is heightened when people are not able to talk about their mental health challenges to others. Very often men and women at risk feel they have no one to talk to about suicidal thoughts and the conditions that cause them.” To combat the stigma, shame and fear around mental health that …

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Ireland’s highest average summer temperature recorded in Clare

SHANNON recorded the highest average temperature in Ireland this summer, official statistics from Met Éireann show. The mean temperature at Shannon during the summer (which Met Éireann defines as June, July and August) was 16.2 degrees celsius, half a degree above Shannon’s long term average. Shannon had 458 hours of sunshine during the three months, 5% above average. The amount of rainfall was 16% below average. It its overall summary of the season, Met Éireann said it had been quite dry and warm. “Summer 2021 was warm everywhere and relatively dry overall, especially in the South and East,” the report stated. The widespread heat waves during July and dry spells in June and July were especially notable events. This June was provisionally recorded as the third driest ever, with the Jetstream staying mostly to the north of the country. This allowed high pressure to stay in control. It was driest, warmest and sunniest in the Midlands, South and East, with …

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Doubts raised on CAP meeting

Clare Beef Plan questions the transparency of department consultation CONCERN about the transparency surrounding an online Town Hall-style meeting in relation to proposed changes to the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) has been expressed by a local farming representative. Clare Beef Plan vice-chairman, Pat Nagle, isn’t happy with the way the two and a half-hour meeting was conducted by the Department of Agriculture as part of its efforts to involve farmers in a public consultation process. Mr Nagle, who participated in the virtual meeting, recalled Department officials outlined a section of the CAP proposals concerning suckler operators. “You could ask a question, but you didn’t know whether it would be answered or not. Beef Plan submitted a number of questions and I believe none of them were answered. It would have been better if the questions posed were displayed visually in some format, which would be far more transparent.” The Liscannor farmer claimed the meeting was akin to a “tick the …

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Kent sisters do Clare proud at World Dance Cup

TWO students of Breakthrough Dance Company in Ennis have represented Ireland at the World Dance Cup and earned themselves respectable positions among the top-class finalists, writes Conor Clohessy. Leilani (14) and Saoirse Kent (12) had been taking contemporary dance classes with Breakthrough for several years before they decided to audition for Team Ireland in 2019 and were on-course to going to Rome for the Dance World Cup in 2020 before Covid restrictions prevented it. Instead, entries were taken in video format, and the girls entered a total of three categories; Leilani placed 19th in the world in the “lyrical” category, Saoirse earned herself 23rd place in the “contemporary” category, and the sisters combined their efforts to achieve 10th in the world for their contemporary duet entry. Laura Jane Allis, founder of Breakthrough Dance Company and their dance instructor, said: “The competition scene is relatively new to the school, it wasn’t ever something we had focused on in the past, but …

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Festival co-operation a great exercise in ‘community building’

REGENERATION and resilience will be celebrated in Mountshannon later this month, thanks to a collaboration between diverse members of the East Clare arts community. The pandemic presented all kinds of hurdles in terms of live performance and, after taking their offerings online in 2020, Mountshannon Arts Festival this year opted for two mini-festivals on the theme of ‘regeneration’. The first event was held in June and the second is scheduled for September 24-26, traditionally the weekend of the Mountshannon Trad Festival, which ran to huge acclaim between 2010 and 2019. Aistear Park will be the focal point for a weekend of arts events and traditional music and will host an open air market for the duration. The collaboration has been made possible thanks to a funding award secured by Cliodhna Donnellan, artist, promoter, producer and co-ordinator of Mountshannon Trad Festival, under the Live Outdoor Local Performance Scheme from Clare County Council. The event will provide a platform for traditional artists …

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Niall O’Brien was ‘rogue’ who left family and friends ‘a treasury of love’, funeral hears

Talented sportsman Niall O’Brien, who died a week ago following an alleged assault in Greece, was remembered at his funeral mass Monday, as a “loyal, witty, warm, rogue” who left his family and friends with a “treasury of love”, reports David Raleigh. The 21-year old from Castletroy, Limerick, and Broadford, County Clare, was “at the centre of fun, having it, and creating it”, his aunt Pauline said. Several hundred mourners looked on in silence as Mr O’Brien’s coffin was shouldered into Our Lady Help of Christians Church, Milford, Limerick, draped in the jerseys of several sporting clubs for whom he played. Friends from school, college, and sports clubs, in Monaleen, Castletroy and Broadford performed guards of honour as the cortège travelled the short distance from Mr O’Brien’s home in Castletroy to the church. Loved ones placed symbols of his life, including a family photograph; his hurley; a collage of photos of him and his friends; a deck of cards; and …

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