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East Clare

‘It’s Hard To Look At Buildings Lying Idle When People Need Homes’

IT IS A bright and chilly Friday morning in Tulla and there’s a buzz of activity about the place as locals stock up on the shopping and catch up on the news ahead of the weekend. “Ideally, we’d love to see this level of activity every day of the week,” says Councillor Pat Hayes who is taking The Clare Champion on a short walking tour of following the news that over 40 vacant premises have been identified in the area. While the heart of Tulla is beating strongly, as we make our way down Lower Main Street, the evidence of a report compiled by Clare County Council from Geo Directory statistics becomes more apparent. “We are coming to an area where there would have been busy pubs and shops, as well as a cinema,” Cllr Hayes explains. “But, you know life has changed and times have changed. Still it is hard to be looking at buildings lying idle and empty …

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Mountshannon’s Luchia is Miss Roscommon

MOUNTSHANNON’S Luchia Noyes will take to the Miss Ireland stage this September representing County Roscommon. Luchia was born in Dublin but from the age of four came to live with her Mum in Mountshannon. Having studied film and television in Galway for a year she headed for Australia at 18 for what she thought would be a three month stint. Three months turned into six years, and she now works as a unit manager on Films and TV shows with Eire Films in Australia. Home was always on her mind and two years ago she decided to come back home. Due to work commitments in Australia she is over and back now between the two countries. Last year the actress thought about applying for the Miss Ireland competition as she felt it offered a great platform for young women. Tragically around that time she lost a friend to suicide and her focus changed. “I came home last year for three months …

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Prestigious Award for Tulla’s Mary MacNamara

TULLA based concertina player, Mary MacNamara is to be celebrated in a memorable concert featuring the best in the county and country as she has been announced as this year’s MÓRglór Award winner. Glór has this week announced that the MÓRglór Award 2019 will go to the legendary concertina player who has been an inspiration to many musicians, both in Clare, nationally and internationally, and an outstanding ambassador for the traditional arts in Clare. Mary was in Australia when she got the news that she had been named as this years recipient. “I was in Australia when I got the call. I was in a lift at 11.30pm and obviously the coverage was bad in the lift, and I could hear a little bit  and I had to ask them to email. I got that at 12 midnight and it was a lovely surprise before I went to bed,” she said. Mary had been in Australia and New Zealand playing music with Eileen O’Brien and Angela Usher and …

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Derry’s Susan McKay to speak at Scariff Harbour Festival

Ahead of her upcoming appearance at the annual Scariff Harbour Festival next month, Derry born author, journalist and broadcaster Susan McKay tells Carol Byrne that Brexit “is an unnecessary block that has been put in the way of peace in Ireland but it will have to be overcome”. SUSAN McKay has said “It is important to realise that awful as Brexit may be it is not the end of the world” and while economically is will be “disastrous for the North” the people of the island of Ireland will still be able to work together afterwards. “Brexit, economically is just going to be disastrous for the North. It’s going to be problematic in terms of North South communications. My own preference would have been for a new referendum at a much earlier stage than this, but it all seems to be hurtling towards a pretty bad end at this point. But I think it is important to realise that awful …

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Florence Bugler Retires from An Post

THE last woman in the country to put through a call via manual exchange has retired from An Post this past week. Mrs Florence Bugler was the postmistress at Mountshannon Post Office in 1987 when the country went fully automatic for telephone calls and she put through the last call from Dr Michael Smurfit to the then Taoiseach Charlie Haughey. Mrs Bugler began her career with An Post, when she left school to help her grandaunt Mrs Florence Veller at Mountshannon Post Office in the late 1960s. Mrs Veller suffered a stroke and was sick for a number of years and passed away in 1972. In 1974 Mrs Bugler became postmistress in Mountshannon. She really enjoyed the work, meeting people and in 1983 she married Gerard Bugler and in when the couple learned the post office in Scariff was vacant and so they applied for it and in 1990 took up the mantel. “We never looked back since, we were …

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2018 REVIEW: A Perfect Match In Every Way

EAST Clare couple Reah and Aaron Higgins this year told of their amazing organ donation story this year, as the two revealed how they were the perfect match in every way. When Reah Hedrich met Aaron Higgins for the first time 20 years ago and he asked for a kiss she shied away from him, however little did she know the two would reunite in 2006. The couple were more of a match than they originally thought as when Aaron’s health took a dramatic turn resulting in him going on dialysis, Reah stepped up immediately offering him a kidney. More than a year on from a successful transplant procedure the couple and their two children, Fionn and Stephen, continue to enjoy a new lease of life the procedure has given their family. Aaron has a condition known as Focal Segmental Glomerulosclerosis (FSGS), which causes scar tissue to develop in the kidneys which limits the filtration process and can lead to …

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Youth Club Cook up a Storm for Christmas

CHRISTMAS comes but once a year but in the lakeside community of Flagmount, young people get to celebrate it twice, as each year they create from scratch their own Christmas dinner, complete with turkey, Brussels sprouts and carols. The Lough Graney Youth Club members, from the ages of 12 to 20, design the three-course menu and prepare starters, cook a turkey and bake desserts for up to 25 people. As team leaders, Rebecca Smyth from Killanena, Louise O’Connell from Flagmount and Ella MacNamara from Caher, explain, this is the one time of the year when the whole group comes together. “We’ve been doing this for six or seven years, since we all went into secondary school,” Louise said. “It’s nice we all make the food together and we all have different parts we look after. Some people will be on the apple crumble and some people will be on the turkey and then we all come together to eat it …

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Monster fundraiser for Tulla music exchange

Cnoc na Gaoithe in Tulla is to hold a monster Christmas fundraiser next Saturday December 8 to support a dance and music exchange to France next year.  The event, which takes place at Treacy’s West County Hotel in Ennis at 8.30pm sharp, expects to draw a large crowd.  The proceeds raised on the night will be used to fund 15 musicians and dancers from Cnoc na Gaoithe who will travel to the South of France in the New Year. The exchange programme already saw a group of French musicians come to Tulla in July 2018. The programme has facilitated not only an exchange of music and culture but has also developed ties between both groups.  Booking details can be obtained from Cnoc na Gaoithe, Tulla Post Office and Tulla Pharmacy.  All are welcome to attend.

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