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Tag Archives: post office

Posted in the community’s heart

Last Friday saw the retirement of Margaret Keane, after more than 50 years working at Kilkee Post Office, having been postmistress for 34 of them. Her retirement marks the end of an era in Kilkee, with the post office now moving into a local grocery shop. Here, Margaret reflects on a long career which saw many changes. OVER half a century ago, as a young teenager living in the Burren and a pupil at Ennis Vocational School, I could not have conceived how my life was about to change as a result of reading The Clare Champion. I was reading through the “Situations Vacant” column and I came across an ad which caught my eye. It was for a 15-year-old girl wanted to train in a busy post office. I did not know where in Clare the post office was located, as it only listed a box number. I wasn’t really looking for a job at the time as I …

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All change in Kilkee as Post Office moves to new home

IT is the end of one era – and the beginning of another – in Kilkee with the moving of the coastal town’s post office to brand new location. On Friday, Margaret Keane will retire as post mistress in Kilkee, having worked there for over 50 years, and the town’s stand-alone post office on O’Connell Street will come to a close. However, the postal service is set to continue in the popular seaside resort, moving to another long standing institution of the town, Haugh’s shop on O’Curry Street. The new post office will open its doors in Haugh’s on Tuesday with preparations now being finalised for the unveiling next week. Carmel Muldoon of Haugh’s explained that the retirement of Mrs Keane meant that the operation of the postal service in Kilkee went up for tender, and Haugh’s were delighted to be successful in their application. She stressed the importance of services like the post office to local communities saying, “With …

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Florence Bugler Retires from An Post

THE last woman in the country to put through a call via manual exchange has retired from An Post this past week. Mrs Florence Bugler was the postmistress at Mountshannon Post Office in 1987 when the country went fully automatic for telephone calls and she put through the last call from Dr Michael Smurfit to the then Taoiseach Charlie Haughey. Mrs Bugler began her career with An Post, when she left school to help her grandaunt Mrs Florence Veller at Mountshannon Post Office in the late 1960s. Mrs Veller suffered a stroke and was sick for a number of years and passed away in 1972. In 1974 Mrs Bugler became postmistress in Mountshannon. She really enjoyed the work, meeting people and in 1983 she married Gerard Bugler and in when the couple learned the post office in Scariff was vacant and so they applied for it and in 1990 took up the mantel. “We never looked back since, we were …

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Marie closes the green door in Kilfenora

MARIE Hogan has been the friendly face that welcomed both locals and visitors alike to Kilfenora Post Office for 18 years.On Friday, her tenure as postmistress came to an end with the closure of the North Clare outlet for An Post services. Despite a strong public campaign last year to save several rural post office around the county, some have closed and the day of reckoning has finally arrived for Kilfenora. Marie would have loved to remain open for business but her operation did not fit the criteria set out by An Post in its rationalisation programme. “There are about 400 people in the area served by Kilfenora Post Office but An Post dictated that there should be at least 500 people living within a 10 kilometre radius of any give office. We don’t have the numbers. I had no choice but to close; it was the hardest decision I’ve ever had to make. The Kilfenora people will now be …

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Future of Shannon PO unclear

CLARIFICATION is this week being sought about changes to the operation of Shannon Post Office. It is not thought that there is any danger of the post office closing, rather of it no longer being run by An Post, with possible future implications for staff and services. “It came to my attention that there are changes planned for the post office in Shannon and, given the importance of this essential service to Shannon Town and the Shannon area, I sought further clarification from An Post about any such changes,” said Minister of State Pat Breen. “Officials from An Post informed me that it intends to convert Shannon Post Office from being a company-run office to one run by a contractor in the coming weeks.” Mr Breen said he was assured the changes will not mean a reduction in services there. “I have been assured by An Post that the change in business model for the Shannon office will not in …

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Watch House Cross store closure

Education Minister Jan O’Sullivan has expressed her surprise at the sudden closure today (Tuesday) of the Eurospar store at Watch House Cross, a few miles outside Limerick city. The landmark shop, which is situated on strategic route to the city, has a big customer base in the Meelick/Parteen area. “The sudden closure of the Eurospar store is a blow for the workers and the local community. I understand there are approximately 40 full-time and part-time jobs at stake. There is an onus on the national operator of Eurospar stores, BWG Foods, to ensure that the workers receive full information on their current entitlements and to inform them of the future plans for the store at Watch House Cross,” the Labour TD for the area said. She said the workers have given loyal service to the store and deserved to be treated with respect. “Local people have told me that the store was trading busily and I believe that every effort …

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West Clare battling against business closures

MORE than 160 outlets, including shops, pubs, post offices and banks, have closed in West Clare in the last 25 years. These approximate figures, which have been compiled by The Clare Champion, do not include additional outlets such as seasonal businesses in resort towns like Kilkee. The figures show that the region, from Ballynacally to Kilbaha and up to Miltown, has lost 102 shops and 53 public houses since 1989, while AIB has closed outlets in Kildysart and Kilkee. Ballynacally, Coolmeen, Cranny, Cross and Knock have lost their post offices in that period. In the last decade, Kilrush has lost eight pubs and a total of 53 businesses, including 19 in Moore Street alone. However, in the same period, 42 businesses have opened in the town. The breakdown of what has closed in West Clare towns and villages during that period include: Ballynacally, two shops, one post office. Lissycasey, two pubs, two shops; Kildysart, three pubs, two shops and AIB …

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Local post office protest meeting

A PUBLIC meeting focused on saving rural and urban post offices and retaining social welfare payment services through the post office is taking place in the West County Hotel this Thursday at 8pm. Postmasters all over Ireland are worried that post office services in communities are under threat. The meeting is organised on the back of a major campaign instigated by the Irish Postmaster’s Union (IPU), which represents 1,100 people throughout the country, demanding the Government produce an action plan to ensure the sustainability of the Post Office network. The nationwide campaign began last Sunday in Sligo and a series of meetings of postmasters is currently underway across the country. Brian McMahon of Feakle Post Office, the second-oldest post office in County Clare after Killaloe, has said the concern is that there is a move to have social welfare and pension payments made directly into bank accounts. “A motion goes before the Dáil next week in support of the postmasters. …

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