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West Clare

Celebration of youth creativity in Kilrush, Ennis and Shannon

A FEAST of music, dance, painting, crafts and film is in store for young people across Clare and Limerick, with an event entitled, Scairt na hÓige, A Creative Youth Festival around the Shannon Estuary, taking place from August 27 to 30. The Clare element will see activities in Ennis, Shannon and Kilrush, organised by the Limerick and Clare Education and Training Board (LCETB) in association with Creative Ireland, and involving a range of creative partner organisations. “Creative Ireland are really brilliant in terms of encouraging young people to participate in the arts and in asking them what they want in terms of arts activities,” explained actor and former star of Fair City, Maeve McGrath, who is festival organiser. “This programme is a direct response to that. Creative Ireland supports participation in the arts and raises awareness of creative sectors and roles.” Kilrush will be the focal point of activities on Thursday and Friday, as the majestic tall ship, Ilen, docks …

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Miltown direct provision centre to close immediately

THE highly controversial emergency direct provision centre in Miltown Malbay is to close immediately. The Department of Justice and Equality has informed residents that all transfers will be completed by the end of this week. Also, there are no further plans for the premises in Miltown Malbay to be used as a direct provision centre. Miltown Malbay Welcome Group has expressed relief that the residents of the centre will now be relocated. “Although we are saddened to think that we are losing the men who have added so much to our small community, we hope that they will now be accommodated in places where their safety, dignity, human rights and privacy are respected,” the organisation said. Deputy Cathal Crowe said, “I have been in contact both with the residents of the direct provision centre itself and the local group set up in Miltown to ensure they have an acceptable standard of living and I know this is news that will …

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UPDATE: Swimming ban on five Clare beaches

CLARE County Council has issued an update today (Saturday, August 1) raising its alert level for Lahinch beach to a swimming ban. Temporary bans remain in place, until further notice, on five other beaches. In a statement, the council said that following ongoing monitoring of the bathing waters at Lahinch, the notice has been upgraded from advisory not to swim to swimming prohibition as a result of increased bacterial levels. There is now a temporary prohibition on swimming at the following locations in County Clare due to elevated bacterial levels in the water: • Lahinch • Spanish Point • White Strand Miltown Malbay • Kilkee • Quilty (front beach). The elevated bacterial levels are as a result of heavy rainfall in the catchment area which subsequently discharges into or near the bathing area. There is ongoing monitoring at the above locations, and Clare County Council is in consultation with the HSE. For further information, contact Clare County Council environment section …

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Wynne appointed to Dáil committee

Sinn Féin TD for Clare, Violet-Anne Wynne has expressed her delight at being appointed to the Dáil select committee on the Rights for People with Disabilities. Deputy Wynne said she is very passionate on the topic of people with disabilities and has experience and knowledge in this area since completing her degree in Psychology from Trinity College Dublin in 2009. “Over the years I have gained experience working with the home help services and I fully understand the frustrations that parents with children with special needs face, as my third born Travis was diagnosed in 2017 with Autism. I would hope that this experience will stand to me when dealing with the issues people bring forward to me,” she said. The Clare TD will be working alongside her party colleague Deputy Pauline Tully to ensure that the concerns of people living with disabilities right across this country are highlighted at the highest level. “I have been raising the difficulties being …

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Major funding boost for West Clare Greenway project

THERE has been a welcome boost for a long-cherished plan to create a greenway along the route of the old West Clare Railway, linking Ennis to the towns of Kilrush and Kilkee. This week, Minister for Climate Change, Communications Networks and Transport, Eamon Ryan announced funding €255,000 for the project. The allocation will enable the start of an active consultation phase involving landowners along the route, with a view to creating another world-class visitor attraction in Clare. The funding, which was allocated under the Carbon Tax Fund 2020, represents a total allocation of €4.5m to 26 greenways and provides support for feasibility, planning and design. The allocation to the West Clare Railway Greenway Project will progress the proposed amenity past concept and feasibility stage and allow Clare County Council to start actively engaging with landowners on route selection and preparation of the statutory consent phase of development – namely planning permission, environmental impact assessment and preliminary design. It is envisaged …

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Social distancing focus for peak holiday season

AS THE height of the holiday season draws closer, authorities are to step-up efforts to ensure people enjoy their time in Clare safety. Concerns have been voiced by some members of the council that a recent influx of visitors is putting public health and safety at risk, while a senior Garda spokesperson urged people to remember their personal responsibility in minimising the risk of a second wave of Covid-19. At the July meeting of Clare County Council, a number of members were torn between welcoming the economic boost created by the spike in visitor numbers and concerns that social distancing guidelines are being flouted in some areas. “We welcome everybody to County Clare,” said Councillor Ann Norton. “We are still in a pandemic and it is hugely important that people take heed of public health advice, whether they are here for a holiday or on a day trip. Visitors are hugely welcome, but people must be kept safe.” Councillor Johnny Flynn also voiced some …

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Murphy calls for ‘Covid proofing’ of West Clare funding applications

A CALL has been made for future tourism projects for West Clare to be “Covid-proofed,” so that their viability doesn’t depend solely on large numbers of international visitors. Tabling a motion at the last meeting of the West Clare Municipal District, Councillor Cillian Murphy asked that the council would undertake “a strategic review of its current Rural Regeneration Development Fund (RRDF) applications” to ensure the most appropriate ons were being pursued. The Fianna Fáil member said the move was needed “in light of the changed global circumstances, due to Covid-19, especially with regard to tourism”. “There is a huge issue now around diversifying projects like the Loop Head Lighthouse and the Vandeleur Gardens,” he said. “Those projects were designed to capitalise on the type of tourism we don’t have at the moment. They’re locked on a path to outcomes they will now struggle to achieve and nobody could have foreseen this.’ Asking for details of projects currently being assessed, Councillor …

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Tributes paid as West Clare District Official changes role

WARM tributes were paid at the June meeting of the West Clare Municipal District to long-serving official John Corry, who is to move to the Roads Section of Clare County Council. A presentation was made to Mr Corry, former Town Clerk for Kilrush, after more than a decade’s service to West Clare. “If you could have picked your dream team, John would be top of the list,” Councillor Ian Lynch said. “He is a phenomenal servant to Clare.” Councillor Joe Killeen backed up those views and wished Mr Corry well in his new role. “It can be difficult for new councillors to find their feet,” he said. “As Administrative Officer, John has always been very patient and helpful and a great support.” In the opinion of Councillor Róisín Garvey, “Everybody needs a John Corry in their lives”. “If I could keep you and have you run my life, I would,” she said. “Newbies could sometimes be called scatty.” Director of …

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