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West Clare

Lynch turns away from Fine Gael

 By Peter O’Connell KILRUSH town councillor Ian Lynch is to switch his political allegiance from Fine Gael and stand in the West Clare area as an Independent candidate in the May election. He will join the battle for votes in the West Clare capital with his town council party colleague Marian McMahon Jones, who was added to the Fine Gael ticket after the November  convention. Sitting county councillors Gabriel Keating and Oliver Garry were selected at the Fine Gael convention to represent the party in the expanded west Clare constituency. Currently Kilrush is without a representative on Clare County Council for the first time in the local authority’s history. Councillor Lynch was elected to Kilrush Town Council, on the first count, in 2009 and says that he regrets not running for the county council five years ago. “Looking back this may have been a mistake because since the local elections in 2009 Kilrush town and the greater hinterland have been …

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A cloak of armour for Seafield

By Peter O’Connell RESIDENTS in Seafield and Cloghauninchy are happy that as much temporary defence work as possible has been undertaken in advance of this weekend’s high tide, which is expected to reach 5.9 metres. Minister of State Brian Hayes visited West Clare last Friday where he saw firsthand the damage caused by the recent high tides and storms. “The work commenced last Wednesday. It’s on a temporary basis and Minister Hayes gave an assurance that he would look for funding. Some of it will have to come in from Europe. The defences put in place last week are temporary and not a long-term solution. The Seafield houses are protected by bags of crushed stone and rock armour,” Cloghauninchy Action Group chairman, Michael Neenan said. “I’d be fairly confident that it will hold out the sea but with a high tide of 5.9 metres, along with the waves we’ve had, it would be very hard to keep that out with …

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Along the Wild Atlantic Way

FÁILTE  Ireland wants all Clare communities to row in behind the 2014 Wild Atlantic Way tourism initiative.  The tourism authority will be holding a series of community meetings along the west coast with one taking place in the Armada Hotel, Spanish Point on Wednesday night next. Encouraging communities to get involved, Fiona Monaghan from Fáilte Ireland said ,“Over the coming weeks we will be holding a series of community briefings so that you can learn more about the Wild Atlantic Way, share ideas and work together. These events are all about making sure your local area gets the most out of this  initiative.” The Wild Atlantic Way is a long distance touring route from Donegal to West Cork with a total length of 2,500km showcasing the Atlantic coastline. The objective is to link the destinations and attractions along the route together, with the ultimate aim of creating a variety of experiences and attracting more international visitors to the West Coast. …

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scattery island

Scattery Island photo exhibition

THE  intriguing history of Scattery Island and Kililmer – Tarbert,  can be appreciated in a new photographic exhibition launched at the University of Limerick  by UL president, Professor Don Barry. The exhibition entitled ‘Inhabiting the Shannon Estuary: Scattery Island and Kilimer-Tarbert’ was developed from the activities of the Scattery Island Heritage and Tourism Forum which ran and won the ‘Community Gathering of the Year’ award from Chambers Ireland for their Island Gathering in July 2013. The Scattery Island exhibition was pieced together by the voluntary group whose long term aim is to preserve the physical and built environment on the island, working with the Office of Public Works and Clare County Council. The photographs are drawn from the Limerick City Museum Collection, the National Monuments Service, the Lawrence Collection in the National Library of Ireland and personal perspectives provided by the Forum members. Professor Barry said, “The exhibition illustrates the rich history of the island from its establishment as a …

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A 10-year strategy for Kilkee

A NEW  strategy aimed at guiding the promotion and development of Kilkee over the next 10 years will be launched at Cultúrlann Sweeney on Monday next. Prepared by Clare County Council, in association with Kilkee Town Council and various community groups, ” Towards a Better Kilkee: A Town Improvement & Economic Development Strategy 2014-2024”  is expected to reinvigorate the resort  town. The short and medium term priorities outlined in the strategy include a branding and marketing exercise for Kilkee, establishing contact with owners of all opportunity sites, promoting the existing coastal walks by upgrading signage and information, and a survey of derelict sites in the town. The plan also proposes upgrading works to the iconic seafront bandstand, a comprehensive scheme of street and lane signage, and a database of accommodation linked to a comprehensive new website for the town.    

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Gardaí Investigating death of man in Ballynacally

GARDAÍ in Kilrush are  continuing their investigation following the discovery of a body in the West Clare village of Ballynacally on Saturday morning last. The body of Mr Tony McElroy, aged 61, from Kilmaley, was found at approximately 9am close to the community centre. Following a post mortem examination, gardaí are satisfied there was no foul play and are treating the matter as a sudden death. An investigation into the wider movements of Mr McElroy leading up to his death is still underway in order to prepare a file for the county coroner. A technical examination of the scene where his body was found in front of the community centre, behind the village playground, was carried out on Saturday. It is understood Mr McElroy was socialising in Daly’s pub on Friday night, which is close to where his body was found. His funeral took place on Tuesday in Kilmaley church, with burial afterwards at Mount Temple Cemetery, Kilmaley.

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Storms threaten more damage

POWER cuts lasting several hours affected many parts of the county on Saturday and Sunday, following damage to overhead cables, due to gale force winds. There is a high risk that this kind of weather will persist over the next couple of days. This continuing adverse weather has  heightened fears that coastal areas of Clare and the Shannon Estuary shoreline  badly affected by flooding a couple of weeks ago, could once again be in serious danger of further storm damage. The latest Met Éireann forecast is: Squally showers continuing in most parts of the country tonight, a few of them thundery and some falling as sleet or snow over high ground. Strong to gale force, westerly winds will persist countrywide, with stormy conditions much of the time in northwestern and western counties. Lowest temperatures 0 to 4 degrees Celsius but too windy for frost or ice to develop.

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€144,000 worth of cannabis found in Mullagh growhouse

GARDAí in Ennis have arrested a man in his early 30s following the discovery of a growhouse in Mullagh on Thursday night. Gardai seized cannabis plants at various stages of growth with an estimated street value of up to €144,000, pending analysis, following a search of a house on Main Street, Mullagh. The house was searched as part of an ongoing operation targeting the cultivation, possession and sale  of cannabis in the county. The growhouse, which was discovered shortly after midnight on Thursday by gardaí from the Ennis Drug Unit assisted by local gardaí, was described as “sophisticated”. A male in his early 30s was arrested at the scene and is currently being detained at Ennis Garda Station under the provisions of Section 2 of the Criminal Justice (Drug Trafficking) Act 1996. He can be held for up to seven days. This is the sixth cannabis seizure in Clare in less than two weeks and brings the total estimated value …

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