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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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Musician Heidi relishing the trip east

Eoghan Moloney HEIDI Talbot has toured the world with ultra-popular musicians, including all-female group Cherish The Ladies – renowned worldwide for their Celtic sound – and she is very excited to perform at Feakle’s 31st International Festival of Traditional Irish Music next week. Heidi will perform alongside her husband, John McCusker, an award-winning multi-instrumentalist; much-acclaimed musician Breanndán Ó Beaglaíoch and renowned guitarist Paul Meehan. Heidi said, “We’re really looking forward to our visit to Feakle. We’re coming to the end of a 50-date run of gigs. Myself and John started in May, touring all around Ireland in a tour organised by Network Ireland, with Breanndán and Paul, and then continuing as a duo all over the UK and finishing in gorgeous Feakle. We saved the best for last.” Even though they have been touring since May, Heidi says that the group are still a bundle of energy, “ I feel very lucky that I get to play music for my …

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Satefy petition over Kilkishen NS

IMPROVEMENT works and safety measures are to be considered and put in place to slow down traffic at Kilkishen National School, after a petition was submitted to members of the Killaloe Municipal District. Councillor Alan O’Callaghan called on Clare County Council to carry out works at the school to slow traffic, in the interest of the health and safety of children. At last week’s meeting of the municipal district, a petition with approximately 80 signatures was handed in on behalf of locals who were confirming these concerns. Responding, Hugh McGrath, senior executive engineer, said, “It is accepted that there are safety concerns at this location relating to traffic in the vicinity of the school. We are to carry out improvement works to the road surface at this location in the coming months.” In advance of the works, Mr McGrath said the local authority will give consideration to any measures that may improve road safety at this location in consultation with …

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Housing and jobs key to survival of shops in East Clare

THE lack of housing and employment have emerged as key issues to safeguard the future viability of rural shops in East Clare. O’Meara’s grocery and agri-business supplier is the only retail outlet in Flagmont village, operating out of the same premises since 1897. It was all started by John O’Meara. His great grandson, Thomas O’Meara, has been managing the shop since 2010, with valuable assistance from his mother, Annette. It provides a valuable service to people in East Clare from 9am to 8pm, six days a week and 9am to 1pm on Sunday. The key to its success is it provides, in the words of Thomas, a “bit of everything”, grocery, fuel, convenience goods and a large variety of agricultural supplies. The long hours in a rural shop mean it is very much a “vocation” for this family-run business. Asked if there is a magic wand solution to keep rural shops alive, Thomas says there is no quick-fix solution, but …

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Killanena Tractor Run to Support Clare Crusaders

TRACTORS are expected to line the roads of East Clare this Sunday as the annual Killanena tractor run takes place. Departing from Canny’s Bar, Killanena at 12.30pm with registration from 11.30am modern and vintage tractors are welcome. The tractor run was initially the brainchild of a very small group of people in the parish, as a way of raising funds for a worthwhile cause. Organiser Martin Canny said, “This is our third run with the last two raising very substantial amounts for the relevant causes. What began as an idea to try and give a little back has developed into a huge event”. This year the run is in aid of the Clare Crusaders Children’s Clinic. The Clare Crusaders Children’s Clinic provides free therapy and specialist treatment to over 500 children with special needs in County Clare. They are a self financing service located in Barefield, Ennis. The Clinic receives no state funding what so ever and depend on the generosity of the people in the communities to raise over €250,000 per annum to provide the current level of therapy for children. The Clinic was opened in 2007 thanks to the dedication and hard work of a group of parents to overcome the lack of publicly available treatment for children with  with mixed disabilities including Down Syndrome Autism, and Cerebral Palsy. It was a community response to the lack of access to services that children with disabilities need in order to meet their potential. “Please come and support this charity. Everyone is welcome to what promises to be a fantastic day with refreshments and entertainment afterwards. Your support is greatly appreciated,” Martin concluded. More information is available by contacting Canny’s Bar.

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