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North Clare

Burren and Cliffs of Moher retain Geopark status

The Burren and Cliffs of Moher has successfully retained its Geopark designation for a further period following a reassessment and revalidation by the UNESCO supported Global Geopark Network. The designation is subject to review every four years and an assessment was  conducted by Dr. Klaus George from Germany and Dr. Margaret Wood from Wales in June. The announcement was made at the 13th European Geoparks Conference 2015 in Rokua Geopark, Finland. 18 Geoparks were up for revalidation with 16 receiving green cards, including the Burren and Cliffs of Moher. Global Geopark status was first awarded to the Burren together with the Cliffs of Moher in 2011 for their outstanding geological and cultural heritage and has resulted in the region joining a global network of over 100 Geoparks worldwide. The Geopark is managed by Clare County Council and receives support and funding from the Geological Survey of Ireland and Failte Ireland. “Clare County Council has been working in the Burren since …

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Burglaries in North Clare

Gardai in North Clare are investigating a series of burglaries in Bellharbour, Ballyvaughan, Tubber and Crusheen during the past week. Between 12.15amand 7am last Saturday a shed was broken into in Turlough, Bellharbour by breaking the lock. A garden strimmer was stolen but was subsequently recovered dumped in a nearby ditch. The car that was parked nearby had its rear window smashed and a chainsaw stolen from the boot. Last weekend also, a shed in Muckinish, Ballyvaughan was also entered by breaking the lock. Stolen were a Netlfix Alto power washer, an MS 180 chainsaw, a pole saw and a pick axe. Earlier in the week a shed was broken into in Turloghmore in Boston, Tubber. Stolen in this burglary were a variety of wrenches and a Stihl orange-colured chainsaw. A double axle trailer was stolen from Clare County Council’s storage yard at Crusheen over the weekend. Between 4pm last Friday and 8am on Monday, the council yard in Clonmoney …

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Jobs boost at Smokehouse

SEVEN full-time jobs will be created in Lisdoonvarna, along with 10 seasonal ones, it has been announced. The Burren Smokehouse has signed a contract with global logistics company UPS, as part of plans to broaden its overseas footprint. The deal coincides with an announcement by the producer of Burren smoked salmon, trout and mackerel products to invest €150,000 in its existing operations and to create new jobs at its production facility in Lisdoonvarna. The collaboration with UPS will mean The Burren Smokehouse products sold online can be delivered around the world. As well as restructuring its e-commerce activity, The Burren Smokehouse is also expanding operations at its production facility and will be launching a new brand inspired by the Wild Atlantic Way later this year. Owner Birgitta Hedin-Curtin said, “We are investing in our integrated systems, allowing for greater e-commerce activity and higher efficiencies in terms of customer care and our global customer footprint. At our production facility in County …

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Council withdraw’s Blake’s Corner application

THE steps at Blake’s Corner in Ennistymon will not be back-filled, it emerged this week, after Clare County Council withdrew its Part 8 application to carry out the works at the contentious junction. The reason for the withdrawal, according to the county’s senior engineer, is that it would probably have been refused “as such a development would contravene the council’s own Development Plan”. Local Councillor Bill Slattery is livid at what he sees as a council u-turn on the issue. “After getting confirmation from Clare County Council that the Part 8 planning application would not proceed because it would contravene the County Development Plan, I was very annoyed and disappointed,” he said. “I am in the council four and a half years and after being selected to replace Senator Martin Conway, I immediately asked for the steps to be back-filled for the safety of pedestrians and motorists. I felt this request would have been adhered to due to the severe …

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A cold and damp caravan to call home

A NORTH Clare couple and their four young children are among the 6,239 people currently seeking accommodation in Clare. James Sherlock and his partner, Caroline Sherlock, have been living in a caravan at the front of Caroline’s family’s home in Ennistymon for the past year and a half. Now with four children, aged between four years and four weeks, the couple are at their wits’ end. “We have to go into my parents’ house to use the toilet, the shower and to do any cooking. Even at night, if my daughter wants to go to the toilet, we have to go out in the rain to get to the toilet in the house,” Caroline outlined. The family found this summer especially difficult because of the wet weather and are dreading the winter. “Like all children, they just want to play outside but, basically, they have been stuck in here,” Caroline said, indicating the one-room caravan. The caravan does not have …

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Inagh woman’s Calais crusade

SHOCKING television images of the migrant crisis in Calais has spurred one Clare woman into dramatic action. A conversation at the end of last week between Inagh’s Róisín Ní Gháirbhith and a friend of hers in Cork about the situation at the French port has now turned into a national humanitarian aid convoy involving two trucks, 10 vans, two camper vans, six cars and 40 volunteers. Desperate migrants from North Africa and the Middle East have been travelling to Calais in an effort to enter the UK. Some have attempted to walk the 31-mile Channel Tunnel, while others try to stow away on trucks using the Eurotunnel or on ships travelling from the port. Others try to climb aboard the Eurostar train. Now Calais is home to large, poorly-equipped camps and an estimated 3,000 migrants, mainly men and boys, many of whom paid large sums to people smugglers to get there. “I was watching all this on television and reading …

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Minke whale carcass not a health hazard

A whale that washed up on the North Clare coast last week will be left for “nature to take its course”, Clare County Council has confirmed. The body of the 6m-long adult female minke whale washed up on the Liscannor shore on Wednesday last. “In terms of disposal, that would normally fall under the local authority. This whale would be difficult to recover because it is a stony beach so you can’t bury it and it would be hard to bring it out. “It is not near houses and it is not on a popular beach so it is not a health hazard but we would still advise people not to touch it. It is expensive to recover whales and take them to an incinerator so we would see it as a waste of resources when it is not posing a risk,” Simon Berrow, chief science officer of the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group said (IWDG). According to the local authority, …

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Ennistymon mart site burial claims in affadivit

A discount supermarket should not be built in a North Clare town because part of the proposed site may have been used as a children’s burial ground, objectors to the project have claimed. Aldi Stores Ireland Ltd was granted permission by Clare County Council last month to demolish Ennistymon Mart and build a single-storey discount foodstore on the site. Now, the Save Ennistymon Mart Committee has submitted an affidavit, sworn by one of its members, to An Bord Pleanála claiming a woman who had lived in the town “had arranged for a priest to bless a part of the Fair Green below Doherty’s gate under which…the bodies of small children had been buried”. “These were unbaptised children whom the Catholic Church did not allow to be buried inside the grounds of the church and graveyard, which is nearby,” the affidavit from local farmer Tom Clair states. The group has opposed the closure and sale of Ennistymon Mart since it was …

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