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West Clare

On the right trail at Loop Head

Loop Head Heritage Trail has received a major boost as a sustainable tourism attraction. The trail has been named a finalist in one of the world’s foremost tourism and travel award schemes. The trail has been shortlisted in the ‘Culture and Heritage’ category of this year’s 12th annual World Responsible Tourism Awards. The winners will be announced at a ceremony hosted by World Travel Market, at the ExCeL London Exhibition and Convention Centre in November.

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Double inquest hears of domestic tragedy

“DOMESTIC dispute – she stabbed me, I stabbed her”, were among the last words spoken by a man who died on the same evening as his wife in Kildysart, shortly before last Christmas. This was outlined at an inquest in Ennis into the deaths of South African couple, Cornelius and Angelique Billing. The inquest also heard that the couple’s two small children were hysterical in the aftermath of the stabbings and one of them was on Kildysart’s Main Street calling for help, as her mother was mortally wounded nearby. The jury heard evidence from gardaí, ambulance and fire service personnel, as well as Deputy State Pathologist, Dr Michael Curtis. Garda John Cahill said that on December 17 of last year he began work at noon and at around 6.25pm, he got a call to go to a fire at a hardware store in Kildysart. While on the Main Street, he saw a woman staggering in the direction of AIB. She …

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Farmer advised to seek legal representation

A 62-year-old Kilkee farmer charged in connection with the dumping of decomposing carcasses at Baltard Cliff last year was advised by Judge Patrick Durcan to seek legal representation before his next court appearance. Martin Gerald Foley of Lislanahan appeared before this week’s sitting of Kilrush District Court in connection with the discovery of approximately 17 animals at the base of Baltard Cliff, near Doonbeg, on dates unknown between April 20, 2013 and March 31, 2014. He was charged with dumping the animals in  a manner that is likely to cause environmental pollution, contrary to Section 32 of the Waste Management Act. During the hearing, Inspector John Ryan said the Director of Public Prosecutions had instructed that the case be heard in the circuit court. Mr Foley did not have legal representation in court. “My advice to you, Mr Foley, is that you seek legal representation,” Judge Durcan commented. “Not yet, I’m working on it,” the defendant replied, when asked by …

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Two rescued from grounded yacht

Two sailors were rescued  after their yacht rang aground in darkness near the entrance to Kilrush Marina. Shortly after midnight, the Kilrush RNLI lifeboat was launched following reports that a 36ft yacht with two people on board had run aground on a falling tide near the entrance to the marina. The lifeboat reached the scene within minutes and the two sailors were taken on board the lifeboat and brought back to the RNLI base at Cappagh.

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Flooding risks still exist in West Clare

Clare County Council has admitted that current sea defences in Quilty, Spanish Point and the White Strand Beach in Miltown Malbay are not sufficient to deal with a repeat of the adverse flooding in early 2014. At this week’s West Clare District meeting, Councillor Michael Hillery asked that the council “would present a progress report on the coastal protection works” at the the three locations. “The existing sea defences at all three areas are inadequate to withstand a similar storm to that of January 2014 again. To that end, funding is approved for by the Office of Public Works (OPW) for a single coastal erosion and flood risk management study for the section of coast from Quilty to Milltown Malbay, with particular focus on each of the three locations – Quilty, Spanish Point and Whitestrand,” council engineer Stephen Lahiffe explained in a written reply. “The scope of the consultant’s study must accord with the OPW’s guidance for such studies. Standard …

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Lynch disappointed at motion stalemate

COUNCILLOR Ian Lynch has expressed “bitter disappointment” at Clare County Council’s decision not to debate his motion, relating to the purchase of houses by Clare County Council on the Beál an Inbhir estate in Kilrush. It was the first time in many decades that a sitting councillor was stopped from having their motion debated. “It’s extremely disappointing that a decision has been made without being privy to the full facts. Legal advice was sought on the motion and opinion was formed based on one side of the available information,” he claimed. “At Monday’s meeting, I asked for the members to hear my claim that the legal advice was incorrect but members chose not to give me the opportunity to stand behind my motion. The removal of my motion denied me the right of raising genuine concerns in relation to how these houses are being purchased. By removing the notice from the agenda, I was further denied the opportunity to amend …

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Entente Florale judges in Kilrush

RESIDENTS and business owners in Kilrush are being urged to play their part in making the town look its best ahead of the adjudication stage of the 2015 International Entente Florale. Judges for the prestigious European-wide horticultural and environmental competition will be in the town this Thursday, casting a critical eye on the town and its appearance. Kilrush will represent Ireland in the village category of the competition for population centres of less than 5,000. Ireland was represented by Tralee (Kerry) and Dromod (Leitrim) in 2014. The local Entente Florale Steering Group is preparing for the visit and is hoping that the public will also do their bit to help make the town look its best. Clare’s last success in the International Entente Florale competition, which officially recognises the improvement of the quality of life for local urban and village communities, was in 2002 when Ennis was named a gold medal winner in the city category. Ennis also won a …

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Temporary closure of daycare facilities at Raheen and Regina House

Elderly residents are facing into a period of time without daycare facilities, after the HSE made the decision to close both Raheen Community Hospital in Tuamgraney and Regina House in Kilrush. However,  Mary Cassidy of the Support Group for Raheen Hospital says the HSE’s decision to temporarily close the daycare centres in Tuamgraney and Kilrush will upset many service users and their families. In a statement, the HSE says the decision has come about because of a lack of nurses, and that this is caused by factors including annual leave, sick leave and them unavailability of agency staff. Long-term residents at the two nursing homes are being prioritised, with available nursing staff being used to cater for their needs, the statement read. The HSE insists the closure will only be for “a couple of weeks”.

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