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Tipperary man missing

GARDAÍ in Ennistymon are seeking the public’s assistance in tracing the whereabouts of 30-year-old John Ryan, missing from Faranaderry, Templemore. John is studying computers at Limerick IT and residing in Bunratty. He is is described as 5″10, slim build, short brown hair and has green eyes. He was last seen at Cliffs of Moher, Liscannor, driving a green Volkswagen Golf on the evening of June 7. He was wearing a light grey cardigan, black t-shirt, blue jeans and white runners. Anyone who has seen John or who can assist in locating him is asked to contact Ennistymon Garda Station on (065) 7072180, the Garda Confidential Telephone Line on 1800 666 111 or any garda station.

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Council support for peace park

A Clare Peace Park Initiative to erect a First World War memorial in honour of the Clare men who served and died in the conflict has been granted planning permission. The development, which will now proceed in partnership with the council, is on 0.1 hectares of land at Causeway Link, across the road from Glór, in Ennis and will consist of three standing stones, with inscriptions, which will be surrounded by about 100 square metres of paving with pathways in and out of the memorial site. The group’s chairperson, Dr Keir McNamara, is pleased that the initiative has been granted permission and would welcome further sponsorship to ensure the project can get off the ground as quickly as possible. “If we could get in the last bit of money we need, there’s no reason it couldn’t be completed by the end of this year. If we have a slower response to the fundraising effort, we would probably be looking at the middle of …

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Vinyl makes a comeback in Ennis

THE heyday of vinyl is well past, having been overtaken many times – by cassettes, themselves long antiquated; CDs, downloads and streaming. While there is no doubt that both collecting and listening to the old-style records is now a niche interest, it’s a niche that isn’t without its devotees and apparently the numbers of fans of vinyl are actually going up. Sinéad Nic Síoda is running the Record Break Café in Ennis and in her store she stocks vinyl from stars of decades gone by but, surprisingly, there are also very recent releases. For example, U2’s most recent album, Songs of Innocence, which was controversially released on iTunes last September, is there on vinyl, while for the not insignificant sum of €300 you can buy a limited edition collection of all Eminem’s work. Slim Shady on vinyl, who’d have thought it? There is little problem getting new records, Sinead says, and she believes there is more interest in them now. …

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Woodstock Hotel to reopen

FIFTY jobs are to be created at Woodstock Hotel, after the Choice Hotel Group bought the upmarket 67-bed hotel on the Shanaway Road, Ennis, for a reported €1m-plus. The hotel is to re-open on a phased basis, starting in the middle of next month, with the bar, lobby and bedrooms available to guests, while €750,000 in refurbishments are carried out to allow the hotel facilities – including its function/conference room, leisure centre (complete with 15-metre pool), restaurant, meeting rooms and spa – to be fully open for business by the end of September. Regional group general manager, Darragh Brady is currently in Ennis, overseeing the start up and recruitment of around 50 staff for the hotel. “It’s a fantastic hotel and we’re getting great support from local people, who are delighted to see Woodstock Hotel reopening as part of the Choice Hotel Group,” he said. The Choice Hotel Group is the largest four-star operator in Ireland, with over 1,300 rooms …

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Clare young scientists to the fore

BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition have revealed that over the past five years, the participation rate of County Clare secondary schools is 78%. Considered to be Ireland’s premier STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) event for schools, it has been a happy hunting ground for Clare entrants. In fact, Clare students have returned home with a total of 41 awards, which confirms the high calibre of entries submitted across the county each year. BT unveiled the statistics as it called on students across Clare to submit an entry to the 2016 BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition. Now in its 52nd year, the exhibition is synonymous with offering young people a platform from which they can explore and discover the world they live in through the subjects of technology, social and behavioural science, biological and ecological science or chemical, physical and mathematical science. Mari Cahalane, head of the BT Young Scientist, said, “It’s encouraging to see that the majority …

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Actors looking out for the men

Three leading Irish actors have joined in a campaign to highlight the often overlooked issue of domestic violence against men. Amen Support Services Ltd.’s new Break Your Silence awareness campaign, is being supported by Fair City actors Bryan Murray, Una Crawford O’Brien and Caroline Harvey. The awareness campaign is funded by Cosc, the national office for the prevention of domestic, sexual and gender based violence. AMEN is an organisation, which provides a confidential helpline, information and support service for male victims of domestic abuse. This issue is of growing concern, as thousands of men suffer in silence at the hands of their abusive partners. In 2013, AMEN received over 4000 helpline calls, with over 1,000 new men seeking support and information. For many of these men, speaking to AMEN was the first crucial step to possible safety for them and their families. Through this campaign, AMEN is aiming to encourage victims that, should they be in an abusive relationship, they …

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German travel bloggers in Clare

Thousands of people in Germany and elsewhere around the world are set to read all about Clare and the Wild Atlantic Way, following the recent visit of two well-known German travel bloggers. Martin Merten and Carolin Steig, whose blog is called We Travel The World, were here as guests of Tourism Ireland. Martin and Carolin travel the world, showcasing their real-time journeys and broadcasting their stories and experiences through their writing, photos, video and engaging social media. They were here to experience Ireland’s Wild Atlantic Way by campervan, so they could inspire their readers and followers to come and discover Ireland for themselves. During their time here, the bloggers visited the Cliffs of Moher and Doolin. Zoë Redmond, Tourism Ireland’s manager for Central Europe, said, “Martin and Caolin’s blog is very popular, so their visit was a fantastic opportunity to create a major impression on their followers, as they explored the Wild Atlantic Way and shared their experiences. They have …

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County Fleadh on track for Kilrush

FIFTY-five years ago this month, the West Clare Railway was trundling towards Moyasta from Shragh when the driver started pumping the breaks. The train was packed and en route to the County Fleadh in Kilrush, which will be held in the town again later this month. Among those on board were the U-14 Shragh Flagellate and Accordion Band. The Whelan brothers, Frank and Joe Joe, were seated on the train when it ground to a sudden halt. “We heard the hooter blowing and we just pulled up,” Frank recounted. “I stuck my head out the window. There was a cow on the track with the calf sucking the cow. We sat there until the cow walked away when the calf was finished.” Their adventurous journey to Kilrush wasn’t over. The train pulled into Moyasta Station and was next due in Kilkee. However, a technical issue in Kilkee meant the West Clare Railway couldn’t turn there. “The roundabout in Kilkee wasn’t …

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