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Wheelchair users raise concerns about access to new Local Link services in Clare

A SOUTH Galway wheelchair user has voiced his concern about the accessibility of vehicles on Local Link routes currently, and called on Minister Shane Ross to “cop on” and return the service to Clare Bus. Séamus Ó Donnacha from Kinvara, who works for Clare Crusaders in Barefield, has been using a wheelchair for 15 years, said the nature of the accessible buses currently on the routes removed independence from passengers with disabilities, and literally left them “stuck at the back of the bus”. “To my knowledge, there are some accessible buses in the fleet which are able to cater for wheelchair users,” Mr Ó Donnacha outlined. “Clare Bus had low-floor buses which meant that someone could get straight onto the bus. Now, what we have are vehicles with tail lifts at the back. That means that wheelchair user needs to be helped on board, and they’re left there away from everyone else and can’t interact with others. That’s an upsetting …

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Second plane carrying vital medical equipment lands at Shannon

A second Qatar Airways cargo plane carrying vital medical equipment from China landed at Shannon Airport yesterday afternoon. The cargo was the second consignment to arrive in Shannon in under a week. Among the medical equipment on board were ICU ventilators, masks and thermometers for distribution to frontline workers around Ireland in the fight against COVID-19. This follows a delivery of ICU ventilators and hospital beds which arrived in Shannon on a Qatar plane on April 3. Qatar Airways is one of the world’s largest cargo operators and has an extensive network of more than 160 destinations using both freight and passenger flights. The airline resumed flights to China at the end of last month to support the global supply chain, which includes the transportation of urgent medical relief aid, essential to the global fight against the Covid-19 pandemic. Commenting on this latest consignment Mary Considine, CEO Shannon Group, which operates Shannon Airport said: “As an essential service our airport …

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Shannon Firm Keep School Meals Coming in Time of Crisis

SCHOOL may be out for the foreseeable future, but, thanks to the efforts of a major Shannon food plant, school meals will now be delivered to the doors of families who need them most. Freshtoday, which had a staff of more than 30 in Shannon, was forced to cut around two-thirds of its local workforce when school closures were announced in response to the Covid-19 crisis. The company, which employs up to 240 staff nationwide, has now begun to hire some of its workers back to ensure that households in need are provided for. “As soon as schools closed, we knew that the demand from families and schools to supply food would be staggering”, said Tony Mulcahy, Managing Director of Freshtoday Clare. “We immediately set about implementing an alternative delivery method and ensuring that we could meet demand. We are pleased to say that we can offer a fortnightly delivery of groceries for each child, ensuring children have all the …

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Clare mourns a musical and broadcasting legend

BROADCASTING and music circles in Clare, and well beyond, are in mourning after the death was announced of Clare FM presenter, Pat Costello. A long-time Shannon resident, he was a native of Moycarkey in County Tipperary. Mr Costello was a member, for many years, of the acclaimed traditional group Shaskeen, playing banjo, bouzouki and guitar. He was also an expert music producer and sound-recording enthusiast. For more than two decades, he presented music shows on Clare FM, most recently the hugely popular ‘Gentle Folk’ on Sunday nights. Managing Director of the station, Liam O’Shea, who was a long-time friend as well as a colleague, described Mr Costello as a genius. “Pat, to me, was one of the most talented people I’ve ever known,” he said. “He was a genius. He was absolutely brilliant when it came to technology. Pat was a fantastic musician. He spent a lot of time with me when I worked in the RTÉ studios, late into …

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Two Shannon Flights Cancelled Due To Worsening Weather

TWO Aer Lingus flights between Shannon Airport and London Heathrow have been cancelled tomorrow as weather conditions worsen due to Storm Ciara. EI384 from Shannon to Heathrow, and EI385 from Heathrow to Shannon have been cancelled due to “London weather impact,” Shannon Airport have announced. The airport have advised passengers to check with their airlines for updates on flight information as weather warnings will move from status yellow to orange tomorrow as winds are set to intensify. Winds of up to 130km/h are expected tomorrow and a nationwide orange weather warning will come into effect from 5am Sunday morning. Aer Lingus will be in contact with passengers directly regarding refunds or alternative flight options.

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Gardaí Investigating Multiple-car Blaze in Shannon

GARDAÍ are investigating an incident in which six cars were destroyed and many others were damaged in a fire at a premises in Smithstown Industrial Estate in Shannon last night. The fire, which occurred at roughly 11pm last night, is believed to have been started deliberately. A number of units of Clare County Fire and Rescue Service attended the scene and extinguished the blaze. Gardaí say they are following a definite line of inquiry and appealing for any witnesses, or anyone around Smithstown last night to contact Shannon Garda Station at 061-365900 or the Garda confidential line on 1-800 666111.

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Gut Instinct Leads to Alex’s Quick Diagnosis

THERE is nothing stronger than the paternal bond and when a child is sick there is an inherent instinct as a parent to do whatever it takes to fight for them. That was never more true for the O’Shaughnessy family in Shannon because it was the most subtle of behavioural and physical changes that led them to Accident and Emergency with their 10 year old son Alex. Their gut instincts told them something just wasn’t right and their persistence to get to the root of it led to the diagnosis of a rare form of cancer, a one in a million case, normally only detected when the condition is at an advanced stage. “The first time we were worried was Paddy’s Weekend [2019]. We went away to Galway for Alex’s twin brothers 21st. Alex wasn’t himself and was tired. He was just misery, we could see he was trying but he physically couldn’t. We took him to Shannondoc the Tuesday …

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hannon gets the country’s first Starbucks drive-thru

The Shannon Free Zone has become home of the country’s first drive-thru Starbucks as the US coffee house chain opened the doors of its latest outlet to the public. The 204sq metre unit developed by Shannon Group subsidiary, Shannon Commercial Properties, will employ 15 people as it becomes the latest page to turn in the evolving story of the Shannon Free Zone. The US based giant, which is among the world’s largest coffee companies and coffee house chains, operates over 20,000 outlets globally but this is the very first drive-thru in the Republic of Ireland. Starbucks opened its first Irish store in 2005. Located in Shannon Free Zone ‘West’, the single storey unit will include outdoor – as well as indoor – seating, ideal for the heatwave currently gripping the nation. Given its location in one of the country’s largest industrial parks, the unit also, appropriately, comprise a coffee dock/meeting hub that will service the entire industrial estate and prove …

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