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East Clare

Anger over closed toilets

Residents and visitors in Mountshannon were left frustrated and angry last weekend when there were no public toilet facilities open to them.Throngs of people descended on the scenic East Clare village to enjoy the hot weather and to partake in activities on Lough Derg over the weekend but were aggrieved to learn the public toilets were locked. Despite assurances given to The Clare Champion last month that the facilities would be open from the May Bank Holiday weekend, they remained closed last weekend. Frustrated locals and business people have now called on the county council to rectify the situation, as the issue could cost the village tourists and visitors in the crucial summer period. Historian and author Gerard Madden, who also runs a boat service on Lough Derg, said, “It was the biggest crowd in 12 months up at Mountshannon. There were at least 500 people and everybody was complaining about the toilets. There is no excuse for it. It …

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No plan to close day care centre

The Health Service Executive (HSE) has said that bringing forward the annual two-week closure of the day centre at Raheen Community Hospital in East Clare from August to June does not mean there are plans to shut the centre down.However, County Councillor Joe Cooney has said he is concerned about budgetary constraints at the facility and is hoping it would not mean further reductions in beds at the in-patient facility. “I would have grave concern for the day centre in Raheen. There was a meeting organised last Thursday, where a HSE representative outlined that they were bringing forward their holidays and there would be no two weeks’ holidays in August. It is inconvenient for people and some people have no plans organised,” Councillor Cooney commented. He outlined that the hospital lost three beds due to the HIQA report, down from 33 to 30, which he said is also a big concern. “I hope there will be no further reductions. It’s …

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Councillor can’t fathom fenceless decision

LOCAL councillors are confused about why An Bord Pleanála ruled that there should not be a fence at a “dangerous location” beside a river in Quin, when there are “clearly health and safety issues”.At this week’s meeting of the Ennis East Electoral Area of Clare County Council, Councillor Sonny Scanlan requested the council to erect a fence by the river at Duan na Manach, Quin, for safety reasons. In a written response from John Bradley, acting senior executive officer, it was explained that the council’s original planning application (P04/1999) provided for the development of a security fence along the river frontage of the development. “An Bord Pleanála in their decision (PL 03.208132) specifically conditioned that such proposed fence be omitted from the development in the interests of amenity and public safety. The council is thus precluded from installing the said fencing in terms of the An Bord Pleanála decision,” the council official explained.Councillor Scanlan said that this decision made “no …

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Headshop information seminar at Scariff Community College

THE board of management and parents’ council of Scariff Community College have organised a seminar to inform the public about headshops and their products.The event, which is entitled The Rise of the Headshop Phenomenon in Ireland, will include speakers Rionach Power of the Mid-West Regional Task Force, Anne O’Neill of the Community Drug and Alcohol Service, HSE and Detective Garda Seamus McMahon of the Clare Garda Drugs Unit. The seminar will be held at the community college in Scariff on Wednesday from 8pm to 9.30pm.The meeting comes in a week when Minister for Health, Mary Harney announced new measures ro criminalise the sale of legal highsParents’ council chairperson Regine Roskam said there is “genuine concern in the area” and she outlined that this meeting is being put forward to raise awareness and educate the public on the headshop phenomenon. The idea would be that people would recognise what a headshop drug is and what its stated effects are. Chairman of …

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Famine victims to be remembered at Tuamgraney

EAST Clare Heritage has organised a special outdoor Mass at the East Clare Famine Memorial park at Tuamgraney as part of National Famine Commemoration Day this Sunday at 2pm.Fr Brendan Quinlivan will celebrate the Mass. This day of commemoration is especially important to the people of East Clare, as local historian Gerard Madden explained.“The Scariff Workhouse Union, an area of 170 miles2 with a population of 47,984, was declared in July 1839. Its workhouse was built in 1841 and the union comprised of Scariff, Ogonnelloe, Killaloe, Bodyke, Tulla, Feakle, Whitegate, Mountshannon and Woodford. During the winter of 1846/47, the rate of famine burials in Tuamgraney and Moynoe was so great, from the infamous workhouse at Scariff, that the existing graveyards were filled to capacity. In St Cronan’s graveyard, Tuamgraney, hundreds were buried outside the boundary wall, while at Moynoe, sand and gravel was brought from the shore of Scariff bay to cover the corpses,” he said.Mr Madden relayed a contemporary …

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