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Howard visits US Irish Cultural Centre

Ennis Town Councillor Mary Howard made a big hit with the Phoenix/Ennis Sister City Commission at the Phoenix Irish Cultural and Learning Centre after the Saint Patrick’s Day Parade in Arizona.The parade had over 70 entries that stretched two miles. The Sonora Band that came up from Mexico was outstanding.  Los San Patricios de Arizona, which is an organisation that supports the more than 150-year-old friendship between the Irish and Mexican people, took first prize with over 20 cowboy (Chorros) horsemen and 14 costumed ladies riding sidesaddle (Escaramusa).  The American flag, led the Los San Patricios entry followed by the flag of Ireland, the flag of Mexico and then the famous Irish St Patrick Battalion flag of the Mexican American War of 1846. The St Patrick’s Battalion Commander, John Riley, was born in Galway and the St Patrick’s Battalion is celebrated annually in Galway, Ireland, Mexico City and now Phoenix, Arizona. They fought valiantly in Mexico over the boundary line …

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Input sought for vision of Ennis

THE first steps towards developing a vision for the future of Ennis are set to take place this week. The people of the town are being encouraged to take part in what has been dubbed a ‘community visioning’, where they will be able to directly contribute to a strategy for how the town will develop socially and economically over the next decade.Local people can make their ideas heard at a number of world cafés and public-space events to take place next week and also online and on twitter.Ennis Town Council recently sanctioned a research team from the University of Limerick’s Practicum programme to carry out community research asking what the people of Ennis would like their town to look like by 2020. The project is supported by the Clare Active Citizenship Network.The world cafés will take place on Thursday, March 31 at 7pm in the offices of Ennis Town Council, Drumbiggle; Friday, April 1 at 10.30am in the same location …

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Council in search of new library site

PLANS for a new library in the town are once again on the agenda, with Clare County Council seeking expressions of interest from the public in identifying a site.It is proposed that the site, or existing completed building, be used for the redevelopment of the main public library and headquarters for Clare Library Service in Ennis.The present library service in Ennis consists of a public library, local studies centre and library headquarters, dispersed across three separate sites at Harmony Row and Mill Road. “The intention is to locate all three services in a new, single location greenfield or brownfield site in the centre of Ennis. The existing locations will be vacated and may be offered as part of the terms of any agreement,” said a spokesperson for the council.A site of 1,600 to 1,800m2 is required or alternatively an existing building with a floor area of up to 4,000m2. “Proximity to the centre of Ennis and the network of schools …

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Killaloe to turn pink for annual walk

A BALLINA-based father-of-two has pledged to participate in a cancer charity walk after his wife lost an eight-year battle with breast cancer.Bobby Reynolds will join up to 1,000 women for the second annual Killaloe Pink Ribbon Walk in aid of Action Breast Cancer on May 28. His wife, Michelle, 35, died in October 2009.“All through Michelle’s cancer journey, we had outstanding support from Action Breast Cancer, right up to homecare nurses and nightcare nurses in the last few days of her life and that was a wonderful support.“Our outcome wasn’t what we would have liked but not everyone gets beaten by breast cancer. That’s part of the message that we want to get out and Action Breast Cancer is certainly leading the charge in that regard,” he said.Event organisers are hoping to double participation levels from last year’s hugely successful inaugural event, when 550 took part and raised over €80,000 for Action Breast Cancer.For the organising committee, the event is …

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Planning refused again for agricultural building

THE owner of East Clare company, Clare Waste has been refused planning permission for a second time in the last four months in respect of plans to construct an agricultural building at a site in Bodyke.Seán Ryan sought planning permission to develop an agricultural building at Ballymacdonnell, Bodyke, initially in May 2010. However, the application was refused last November 24 on the grounds that the planning authority was not satisfied that the nature of the subject lands and surrounding landscape would not result in flooding of adjacent lands.Less than one month later, on December 23, 2010, Mr Ryan resubmitted plans to Clare County Council for planning permission to construct an agricultural building to accommodate livestock and machinery. Planning permission was refused recently in respect of this application for the same reason as the previous planning application but it was also refused on the grounds that spreading manure on the subject lands would pose an unacceptable threat to water quality and …

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