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Broadband frustrations increase for East Clare residents working from home

FRUSTRATION at poor broadband across large sections of East Clare has intensified as more people try to work and study from home in response to the pandemic. One Tulla resident has told The Champion of her efforts to improve her family’s service which has involved contacting ten different providers, to no avail. The women, who lives just a few kilometres from the town, is a customer with Eir and uses a mobile broadband dongle. “I originally had broadband through the phone line and the service was very poor,” she explained. “The mobile device is supposed to provide wireless internet for up to ten devices, but if you have any more than two connected, it is a disaster. I’m working from home and my daughter was in Leaving Cert, so her studies had to take priority. At best, the service is okay, but that’s all. It is affected by bad weather too, which doesn’t help.” After trying ten different service providers …

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Women being treated as second class citizens, says Mayor of Clare

MAYOR of Clare Mary Howard has said there is an “appalling situation” in the country’s maternity hospitals, with women being left without support due to Covid-19 restrictions. The Ennis woman said that 150 are born each day, and with the mothers not allowed have fathers present except for the latter stages and for a short time after the birth, she said it is often “a really, really lonesome experience”, which can be especially difficult if the birth has been difficult. She said that the staff in the hospitals are “up to their tonsils” and can’t pick up the slack left by the absence of fathers. Councillor Howard said that she had spoken to a number of new mothers, and was told that glasses of water are filled for them at 7.30am and only refilled at 7.30m even though the woman may be unable to get anything for herself in between. Another woman had been in soiled clothes for two days, …

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Planners seek further info on Shannon proposal

SHANNON Commercial Properties had been due to receive a decision on a proposal for an advanced technology manufacturing unit in the Free Zone, but Clare County Council have now sought further information. The proposed development would be a single storey high-bay industrial floor, with an ancillary office area. It would replace existing structures at the site, with planning permission for their demolition already granted. In a submission accompanying the application it set out what is proposed. “The site is located at Bay 77 and 79 within the Shannon Free Zone, adjacent to Rineanna House. Currently it consists of two free standing 1960s factory facilities with associated car parking and back of house amenities, which are earmarked to be demolished to make space for the new 40,000 square foot advanced technology manufacturing facility. “As part of Shannon Commercial Properties 5+ years development strategy, Shannon Commercial Properties with Hassett, Leyden and Association are exploring the redevelopment of this under utilised gateway site …

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Anger over vandalism at Aistear Park, Mountshannon

SANITIZER dispensers have torn down at Aistear Park, in a spate of weekend vandalism which has been described by the head of Mountshannon Community Council as “just horrendous”. Last Monday morning, members of the Community Employment (CE) scheme arrived at the park to find a significant amount of rubbish, with broken glass and fragments of cans strewn in the grass close to a children’s play area. A popular community book-swapping facility, which is located in the park, was also vandalised, forcing the community council to consider removing it altogether. “The CE scheme members have worked so hard during, the earlier lockdown, to keep the park up to a standard where everyone in the locality can get in and enjoy it,” said Joanne Dunphy-Allen. “We were delighted to get support from Clare County Council who gave us the sanitizer dispensers and signage, so that we could really help people to feel safe in the park and to remind them of their …

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“It’s no way to have to live”

THE plight of local householders who are seeing their properties decay due to pyrite/mica in the blocks of their home was discussed at Monday’s County Council, with the members unanimously passing a motion requesting the Minister for Housing to extend the Defective Concrete Blocks Scheme to Clare. During the course of the debate it became apparent that several of the members had been to some of the damaged houses, and they were clearly struck by the poor conditions that their residents have to live in. Councillor Pat McMahon said that pyrite and mica are natural minerals but if they are present in blocks they can lead to degradation and collapse. In Clare, he said that 33 homeowners have come forward with issues, but that there could be a lot more people out there with problems. He said that the Defective Concrete Blocks Scheme is already open to people in Donegal and Mayo, but that it should be extended to this …

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McNamara slams Covid policy and the government

A VEHEMENT critic of the State’s approach to dealing with Covid-19 for some months, Clare TD Michael McNamara has again slammed the latest policy move, as Ireland switches to so-called level five restrictions. “I don’t know really what these levels mean, how we arrived in this paradigm of levels that determine what constraints we have on our lives, our ability to earn a livelihood and our basic right to liberty. I don’t know how we ended up here and I don’t know what purpose it serves,” he said this week. The Scariff man said that Ireland has had the toughest restrictions in Europe for months now, and it has not succeeded in suppressing the virus. He questioned how justifiable imposing significant restrictions is. “How much do you detain somebody, an ordinary healthy person, who doesn’t suffer from any mental illness, for how long is it legitimate to detain them for their own protection?” Mr McNamara said that while very severe …

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High Incidence of Covid-19 in Clare

DEPUTY Cathal Crowe is appealing for a collective effort from Clare people to reduce the very high incidence of Covid-19 in the county and avoid spending Christmas in lockdown. As Clare people face six-weeks of Level Five restrictions from last Thursday, the number of confirmed coronavirus cases exceeded 1,000 for the first time in the county when 1,030 were notified on October 17. Thirty-three more cases were confirmed a day later bringing the county total to 1,063 on October 18. Deputy Crowe said he feels particularly bad for businesses facing closure again and remains fully available to help and advise them in terms of supports. “The people of Clare have already made huge efforts to flatten the curve back in the spring months and yet here we are facing into the same situation once again. “I know how disheartening this will be, how detrimental it will be to people’s mental health, but I hope that people in their individual actions …

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Arrests made following spate of burglaries in four counties including Clare

Gardaí have arrested two men in relation to approximately 10 incidents of burglary and theft in counties Tipperary, Clare, Cork and Limerick. The burglaries took place at petrol stations, post offices and shops, over the last number of months with cash, cigarettes and safes taken. As part of the investigation gardaí arrested two men, aged in their 20s and 30s, on Wednesday, October 21. They are currently detained at Tipperary Town and Nenagh Garda Stations under the provisions of Section 50 Criminal Justice Act, 2007. A car, believed to have been used during the course of the burglaries was also seized and is currently being examined. The arrests took place as result of Intelligence led operation coordinated across the Southern Region over the last number of weeks. The operation focused on an organized crime group believed to have been involved in these offences.

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