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15% of Clare’s population born overseas

MORE than 15% of Clare’s population are now foreign-born, census statistics show, while more than a quarter of households in the Banner County consist of a single person. Figures show the county had a population of 118,817 on census day and a usually resident population of 116,460. Of the second figure, 98,420 were born in Ireland and 18,040 abroad. This equates to 84.5% born here and 15.5% outside of the country. Apart from those born in Ireland, the next biggest group are people born in the UK, of which there are 7,616 in Clare. There is also a large Polish population (2,684), with 333 people from Lithuania. Another 2,424 come from other EU countries and a further 4,983 people are from non-EU countries. The vast majority of Clare’s population are white, with 99,244 people identified as white Irish, 905 as white Irish Traveller and another 9,432 as other white. A total of 1,653 were identified as Asian or Asian-Irish and …

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Kilkee population halved in 10 years

PRELIMINARY census figures, which have been issued in recent weeks, have revealed that the permanent population of Kilkee has fallen by exactly 500 people since 2006. Ten years ago, the population was 1,414, while the 2016 census figures indicate that the current population stands at 914. That is a fall of 123 people since the last census in 2011. In the late 1950s, Kilkee was the third largest town in Clare but it is now the 16th largest. Ironically, the town is currently experiencing its busiest time of the year but on census night, 1,115 houses were unoccupied, which is 72% of the total housing numbers. Loop Head Tourism chairman and Kilkee businessman Cillian Murphy said Clare County Council has not supported its own development plan, which had sought a population of 1,800 in Kilkee come 2017. “I’m in shock. This is a result of 20 years of poor planning. There is lots of holiday accommodation but no commitment to …

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‘Magnified’ economic decline in Gort

By Nicola Corless UNEMPLOYMENT and emigration rates increased more in Gort than any other town in the country, according to research revealed this week. Figures for towns in other parts of Ireland will not be released until April, but Professor Cathal O’Donoghue of the Teagasc’s Rural Economy Development Programme outlined details of the group’s research in Gort to a meeting of Galway County Council on Monday, as part of a presentation from The Commission for the Economic Development of Rural Area (CEDRA). According to its national town rankings, which take into account unemployment and emigration rates, Gort has seen the biggest fall nationally in a Teagasc index of small and medium sized towns. In 2002 and 2006 it was just outside the top 10% of towns in Ireland but by 2011 it had slipped to the bottom 10%. The South Galway town lost 400 jobs in just five years, between 2006 and 2011. While the population of the town dropped …

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Shannon area’s aging population moving on

FIGURES published by the parish show  634 people have died in Shannon since 2000, with 2013 the year when most deaths were recorded. Speaking to The Clare Champion, parish priest Fr Tom Ryan (pictured) said the town’s demographics are maturing. “Maybe 30 years ago, there would be 10 baptisms every Sunday but now, the town is maturing and it’s an ageing town. That’s reflected in the amount of grandparents in the town and even great-grandparents, which wouldn’t have been there in the past.” It’s not that long ago since the cemetery was put in place at Illaunmanagh. “The cemetery opened in 2001 and a number of years later, an extension was sought for it. That’s filling up as well but there’s still plenty of space available.” The parish was founded on Christmas Eve of 1967, although people had been living in the town for some years before, as part of the Newmarket-on-Fergus parish. The number of deaths per year are: …

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