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East Clare

Worry about Green Party ‘wobbly’ on crucial Clare road

AN EAST Clare councillor described himself as “a fraction nervous” over the Green transport minister’s commitment to progressing the Killaloe Bypass. After receiving a detailed update on the multimillion euro project at the May meeting of the Killaloe Municipal District, Councillor Pat Burke expressed the hope that Minister Eamon Ryan would not have “a wobbly”. The Fine Gael member noted the Council hopes to proceed to tender, subject to ministerial approval, around mid-June. The official response described that stage in the project as a “milestone” in a time-frame that could see major works get underway early next year, with a possible completion date of 2025. Commenting on a written update from Seán Lenihan, Senior Engineer at the Council’s Projects Management Office (PMO), Councillor Burke commended the works. “Excellent progress has been made,” he remarked. “I am a fraction nervous about a section of the response which says that ‘all going well’ the minister will give approval for tendering. “I would …

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Step up in poo patrols as fouling issue raised

Wardens set to monitor Killaloe amenities with more dogs out and about in summer DOG fouling in East Clare is generating a huge number of complaints, according to the Cathaoirleach of the Killaloe Municipal District. Councillor Pat Hayes tabled a motion on the matter at the recent district meeting when he called for urgent action. “This is something that’s cropped up a lot because of the numbers of people out with dogs in recent times,” he said. “It’s a challenge we need to deal with because the amount of complaints is huge. There’s nothing as upsetting for those using buggies and wheelchairs. It leaves a very bad impression of a wonderful day at one of our public amenities.” The Fianna Fáil member said that while the issue is a county-wide one, there are areas that are particularly badly hit in the Killaloe district. “Some people are recklessly letting their dogs off, for example at Two-Mile Gate and in public parks,” …

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Festival’s stag-gered approach to fundraising

TWO East Clare artists have put their talents to great use as part of an art raffle which will take place in support of Mountshannon Arts in June. Mel White and Gilli Browne have joined forces to create the collaborative artistic due known as CocoNut. Together, they have created a stunning graphic painting of two fallow stags. Entitled ‘Fallow Me’, the piece takes its inspiration from Mountshannon Arts’ theme of ‘Regeneration’. Mel, also known as Maximillist, is described as a pop artist whose influences range from Andy Warhol to Frida Kahlo. She uses neon to bombard the viewer’s senses, while Gilli invokes movement and texture through palette knife techniques. “We decided to undertake this initiative to help raise much needed funds for the Mountshannon Arts Festival,” said Mel. “The arts offer an opportunity to experience something new or gain a new perspective which is represented in the festival theme ‘Regeneration’. Buying a ticket helps the festival, an important cultural amenity, …

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Festival organiser in RTÉ tribute to amateur drama

CLARE Drama Festival stalwart Tom Hanley is among 15 actors and organisers chosen by RTÉ to feature in a special short film to celebrate Ireland’s vibrant amateur drama circuit. While May is, ordinarily, the month when the RTÉ All Ireland Drama Festival takes place in Athlone, the Dean Crowe Theatre will lie empty for a second year in a row due to pandemic restrictions. In existence since the early 1950s, the festival has been deferred to 2022. However, actors from a range of the regional festival locations, including Clare, have come together to mark what should have been the 69th RTÉ All Ireland Drama Festival. Mr Hanley is among those to lend their voices and faces to a 2-minute film entitled ‘Interval’, a piece written by Joseph Hoban. Produced by RTÉ’s Tracey Diamond, the film focuses on the enforced ‘interval’ the pandemic created in the lives of people nationally and globally. It is a reflection on lockdown and the restrictions that have …

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Major East Clare tourism project takes step forward

AN AMBITIOUS plan to create the Inis Cealtra Visitor Experience has been given the green light, following a Part 8 planning application by Clare County Council. The signing-off on plans to redevelop The Old Rectory in Mountshannon was described at the May meeting of the authority as “a major step forward for tourism in East Clare”. Councillor Pat Burke said he was delighted to proposed the adoption of the Part 8 plan after a successful public consultation period. “There are exciting times ahead now for the area,” he said. “We recently had RTÉ’s Nationwide and Channel 5 putting a spotlight on Inis Cealtra and had a workshops with consultants appointed to the Holy Island project. “My compliments to all involved from the Tourism section of the council for the ongoing work and for advancing the Holy Island plans. This is another major step forward for tourism in East Clare and we’re getting there slowly but surely.” The motion was seconded …

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Vaccine centre in SE Clare to move to Limerick Racecourse

THE vaccination centre at the Radisson Blu Hotel will relocate to Limerick Racecourse in the coming weeks, UL Hospital Group has confirmed. This will affect a sizable number of people in the east and south east of county Clare in line for the vaccine in the coming weeks. With the opening up of hospitality services and the scaling up of the vaccination programme, plans are now being put in place to open a new vaccination centre at Limerick Racecourse on a phased basis during June. Having reviewed the anticipated vaccine supply availability for the coming months and the infrastructural requirements needed, the Limerick Racecourse facility has been identified as having the capability to provide that capacity. The relocation of the vaccination centre from the Radission Blu Hotel to Limerick Racecourse coincides with the resumption of hospitality services in line with the Government’s reopening plan. From an overall Mid-West perspective, the vaccination centres at Treacy’s West County Hotel, Ennis, and the …

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Village’s crossing begins

WORKS have just got underway on a long-awaited pedestrian crossing for the village of Broadford, writes Fiona McGarry. The traffic calming scheme, which was proposed by Councillor Joe Cooney, at the March meeting of the Killaloe Municipal District, will extend from the local national school to the GAA pitch. Welcoming the commencement of the works, which are likely to take a number of weeks, Councillor Cooney said the issue had been on the agenda for some time. “Everyone appreciates that these improvement works are badly needed,” he said. “There is a serious issue with road safety for a number of years. Teachers and parents have worked well to keep issues under control on a very busy regional road and the really good news is that works are underway on a pedestrian crossing. “When the job is completed, the area will be a lot safer for the pupils and wider community. While a lot of improvement works have been carried out …

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Councillors to be briefed on Limerick-Scariff greenway plans

KILLALOE councillors are to receive a briefing on progress with the proposed greenway from Limerick to Scariff/Tuamgraney, after the cathaoirleach of the district described local people as “perplexed” about the matter. Councillor Pat Hayes sought details on the current status of the project, which he said has potential to link East Clare into key tourism trails across a wide geographical area. Updating district members, Senior Executive Officer (SEO) Morgan Lahiffe said the parties involved were hoping to appoint consultants to look at potential routes for the 41km trail. “Clare County Council is working together with Limerick City and County Council, the ESB and Waterways Ireland,” he explained. “Waterways Ireland are the lead agency on this and the hope is that consultants would shortly be working on route selection options. The steering group will include this local authority and we hope that the consultants will be reporting back by the end of 2021. I have asked Waterways Ireland for the latest …

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