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Milan's Duomo

Bridgetown woman sends stark warning from Milan

By Fiona McGarry A SOUTH-East Clare woman, living in Northern Italy, has pleaded with the Irish people to take Government guidelines on social distancing seriously in order to contain the spread of Covid-19. Rachel Turner, originally from Bridgetown, has been living in Milan for more than a decade and said people here should be taking every possible precaution to avoid contracting and spreading the coronavirus. As the death toll in Italy surpasses that of China, Rachel told The Clare Champion the mood is very low and people are desperately missing their normal lifestyles, after more than a month of severe restrictions on movement. Earlier this month, Italy put around 16 million people into lockdown. Under the measures, people are forbidden to enter or leave the region of Lombardy, where Milan is the main city. “We had a neighbour taken away in an ambulance this morning and the apartment block disinfected,” Ruth said. “The death toll is very high for Milan …

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Tulla school unlocks history as time capsule is opened

THERE was plenty of nostalgia in the air on Wednesday last when past and present school pupils got together in Tulla to open a time capsule that had been under lock and key for a quarter of a century. The capsule had been stored away in Bank of Ireland since February 1996 as part of the 20-20 Vision project to mark the European Nature Conservation Year 1995. Past pupils of fifth and sixth classes who attended the Convent of Mercy in the ‘90s, and put the capsule together under the guidance of Sr Eileen Callinan, gathered at St Mochulla’s this week to revisit their childhood visions for the Tulla of 2020. As anticipation grew in the packed hall at St Mochulla’s Principal Brian Culloo set the scene with a description of the key moments of 1995. He raised a cheer among current day pupils for his references to the beginning of the comedy ‘Fr Ted’ and Clare’s All-Ireland hurling victory. Coincidentally, two …

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O’Callaghan’s Mills Hall leaps into new era

ON Saturday February 29, the village of O’Callaghan’s Mills will be putting the Leap Day to good use, by holding a community celebration to launch their refurbished community hall. The building has served as a gathering place for nearly 50 years – and before that housed the local national school, which dates back to the 1840s. The get-together will mark the culmination of community work by generations of dedicated local people. In 1974, when the school moved to a new building, a Community Development took over the premises, and now a recently reinvigorated community council has taken the helm. Chairperson Eamon Cooney and PRO Pat O’Brien, who both attended national school in the old building, are part of a dedicated committee who have driven fund-raising efforts over the last seven years and upgraded facilities significantly. With much change in the village over the years, the modernised hall is an invaluable asset. “Many of those who were on the Development Association …

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Kayakers Rescued on Lough Derg

TWO kayakers were rescued after getting into difficulty on Lough Derg this morning. The alarm was raised shortly after 9am when they got into difficulty, and the Killaloe Coast Guard, the RNLI, a unit from Shannon’s Rescue 115 and three units of the National Ambulance Service attended the scene. The kayakers, who entered the water in Garrykennedy, were found by Rescue 115 and were later saved by an RNLI lifeboat. It is understood the pair fell victim to the strong currents and were taken way off course from Garrykennedy. The kayakers were treated at the scene once ashore and one of the individuals was taken to hospital for further treatment.

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‘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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