Home » Regional (page 5)

Regional

Concerns raised over possible de-zoning of council land

THE risk that some lands owned by council could drop substantially in value, because of new national planning policies, has been flagged by a member of the West Clare Municipal District. Councillor Cillian Murphy told a meeting of the district committee that huge opportunity presented by the pandemic to bring people back to rural Clare could be lost if lands have to be zoned under the terms of the National Planning Framework (NPF), which will shape the forthcoming county development plan. The Fianna Fáil member asked the authority for details of all lands owned by the local authority and details of their zoning, whether residential, industrial or residential. “The impetus for this,” he explained, “is that we need to look at what lands the council owns in the context of the NPF. There is a huge drive from government to deliver affordable housing and a huge opportunity because of the pandemic, for people to live and work in rural Ireland.” …

Read More »

Virtual St Patrick’s Day celebrations planned for Kilrush

ST PATRICK’S Day festivities will go virtual this year in Kilrush, with the community determined to look ahead to brighter days, while celebrating the local parades tradition that is so dear to local hearts. A 12-strong committee involving business and community leaders has been working hard to ensure people still have the chance to celebrate, despite the Level 5 lockdown restrictions. Taking the theme of ‘Sending Grá’ to family and friends who are away from home on March 17, the virtual celebration aims to engage people of all ages. The streets and shops have been decorated in the town and organisers are inviting people of all ages to submit entries to art and photography competitions and to send in photos of vintage vehicles that would normally be getting polished and ready to take to the streets for the parade. There’s also a Jerusalema Challenge for family bubbles and socially-distanced groups. “The Kilrush St Patrick’s Day Parade has always been a …

Read More »

Feakle drive raises over €13,000 for Crumlin Children’s Hospital

MORE than €13,000 has been raised for Crumlin Children’s Hospital (CHI) by a Feakle family whose youngest member had open-heart surgery at the facility almost a year ago. Freya Hayes, who will celebrate her first birthday next month, was diagnosed with a serious heart defect shortly after birth. Thanks to the team at CHI, Freya has now fully recovered and her family and the local community have been able to make a substantial donation so that other children might be as fortunate. Freya’s mum, Avril Collentine told The Champion the family had had “a roller coaster year” in 2020, with the pandemic complicating an already challenging situation. Just as mum and baby were ready to go home to dad Henry and Freya’s older brother, Harry, an ultra-sound scan detected an issue. The images were sent to CHI, where specialists spotted a hole in Freya’s heart. After the team at Crumlin recommended open-heart surgery, the family returned home to allow Freya …

Read More »

Camogie All-Star inspires Beckman Coulter staff

ALL-STAR camogie player, Anna Geary, shared some of her top tips with the staff of Beckman Coulter this week as the company marked International Women’s Day. The international bio-medical firm, which employs 500 people at its Tulla site, also announced the appointments of a number of women to its senior management team. Four-time GAA All-Star, Anna, who is now a performance coach and broadcaster, delivered a talk open to all staff on the topic of Balance, resilience and Coping with Change. She also discussed  the concept of Progress – not Perfection. The theme of this year’s International Women’s Day is Choose to Challenge, and as part of the festivities, Beckman Coulter also published facts on the history of the annual event and the history of women’s rights and how women’s rights have evolved over the years in Ireland. Staff were also encouraged to ask children in their families about their understanding of women’s rights and equality with girls and boys …

Read More »

Laura’s family in plea to reinstate schools HPV vaccination scheme

AN OPEN letter has been sent by the family of the late campaigner Laura Brennan appealing to health officials to reinstate the HPV vaccination scheme for teens. As the second anniversary of the Ennis woman’s untimely death from cervical cancer approaches, her family fear that the vaccination campaign, to which Laura dedicated her final years and months, is being thrown off course by pandemic restrictions. Laura’s work with the World Health Organisation (WHO) and the Health Service Executive (HSE), led to uptake rates for the HPV vaccine surpassing 80% nationally and 90% in Clare. Pandemic restrictions and school closures have disrupted the HPV vaccination programme normally available, free-of-charge, to boys and girls in first year at secondary school. The HSE describes the scheme as “paused” because school vaccination teams are currently involved in the rollout of Covid-19 vaccines. “We are all fully aware of the devastating impact Covid-19 has had on our country and the strain it has put on …

Read More »

East Clare’s ‘time to shine’ in tourism stakes

TOURISM operators in East Clare have been urged to get behind the development of a visitor and interpretative centre for Inis Cealtra, by supporting a Part 8 application from Clare County Council. Addressing the AGM of Tourism East Clare last week, Tourism Officer Joan Tarmey said the authority is hopeful of a funding allocation under the Rural Regeneration and Development Fund (RRDF) to progress the “landmark tourism project” for the region. “Looking at the long-term objectives for the Inis Cealtra project, one is to conserve it as a really important ecclesiastical site,” Ms Tarmey said. “We also want to expand its attractiveness as a tourism destination. These are the two long-term objectives. It’s massively important for the Killaloe Municipal District and it’s really important in raising the profile of East Clare as an attractive visitor destination. The elected members have really been on board with this. They’ve been really wanting to see this happen for a long time and pushing …

Read More »

Armed robbery in the early hours of Clare convenience store

GARDAI are seeking witnesses after an armed robbery in the early hours of Sunday morning from a convenience store. At 3.39 a.m. on Sunday, March 7 a lone male entered Centra on the Gort Road Ennis carrying a large knife. He went behind the counter and ordered the attendant to place the contents of the till into a white bag which he did – he then left on foot running out the Gort Road. The man was wearing a black jacket, navy pants, black beanie hat, black runners and black face mask. The members of staff weren’t injured but this was a very traumatic incident for them. Gardai have asked anyone who was in the area of Centra on the Gort Road in the early hours of Sunday morning between 3.15 a.m. and 4 a.m. and saw a male matching this description or anyone who has dash cam footage to contact Ennis Garda Station on 065 6848100.

Read More »

Susan shares message of hope and inner strength

LAHINCH-based singer-songwriter Susan Quirke has shared a new single ‘To the Bone’, which features on her eagerly-anticipated debut album Into the Sea, due out next month. The single is described as “a timely, soothing, and uplifting song” about drawing on our personal reserves of strength in times of trouble. “Many people are experiencing deep pain, grief, loneliness and isolation as a result of the pandemic,” Susan said. “In many ways suffering is part of the human journey, as is the tremendous courage, resilience and strength people can often demonstrate during tough times.” Susan’s reasons for writing the song are deeply personal, but speak to the universal struggles created by Covid-19. “I wrote this song for someone in my life who was going through a difficult time,” she said. “It was written as an invocation for them, calling on them to remember their power and strength. It’s also written as a balm to soothe people’s hearts and minds. It starts off …

Read More »