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Tag Archives: Shannon Estuary

New Ballynacally café at heart of the community

THE heartbeat of Ballynacally is strong, thanks to the recent opening, in the scenic village, of a new community café. The Estuary Way Café, which has to-date been catering for socially distanced chats, pop-up music sessions and high quality food and beverages, is credited with brining a new vibrancy to the village. “It’s been just amazing, everyone is delighted and the feedback we’re been getting is so positive,” said Dorothy Madden, Secretary of the Ballynacally Development Association. The project dates back to 2018 and, after securing funding from sources including the Town and Village Renewal Scheme and Leader, through Clare Local Development Company (CLDC), opened in July. “There has been a massive amount of work by everyone in the development association, with support coming from right across the community of Ballynacally,” Dorothy said. “Deirdre Mulpeter who leads the team at the café is doing a great job and there are two full-time and at least three part-time staff there, so …

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€500 million Shannon LNG project scrapped

The decision by Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael to sacrifice the long awaited €500 million Shannon LNG project to secure a coalition with the Green Party has been welcomed by environmental groups including Futureproof Clare. Criticism of the proposed Shannon Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) terminal near Tarbert had intensified in recent months, with celebrities like Cher and Mark Ruffalo speaking out over its proposed use of fracked gas. US company New Fortress Energy were promoters of the terminal which would have been the first of its kind in Ireland. Futureproof Clare has welcomed the commitment to scrap the Shannon LNG terminal project and to ban the importation of fracked gas in the proposed Programme for Government, ‘Our Shared Future’. “The ban on all new offshore gas and oil drilling in Ireland’s waters is revolutionary in its commitment to leave fossil fuels behind as we transition to a low-carbon society and economy. Ireland would become the first country in the world …

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Loop Head Lighthouse beams for 2018

The landmark Loop Head Lighthous will open to the public for the first time this year on  Friday. Located at the mouth of the Shannon Estuary on the Loop Head Peninsula, it is one of two “Signature Discovery Points” in County Clare along the route of the Wild Atlantic Way It also is a landmark location on the Loop Head Heritage Trail and is one of 12 Great Lighthouses of Ireland. Loop Head Lighthouse is steeped in history and is rich in maritime heritage, with its origins dating back to the 1670s. The existing tower style lighthouse was constructed in 1854 and was operated and maintained by a keeper who lived within the lighthouse compound. In January 1991, the lighthouse was converted to automatic operation, and today is monitored by the CIL.

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Kilrush Marina a cool place

Kilrush Marina is one of six new locations included in the marketing programme for the Cool Route project, which aims to grow numbers of private craft, super yachts and passenger liners visiting the coastlines of Ireland. Discussions led by the Harbour Master at the Port of Galway, Captain Brian Sheridan, led to the inclusion of an additional 150 nautical miles of Irish coastline, incorporating counties Clare, Galway and Mayo, into the bi-directional yacht cruising route. Cathaoirleach of Clare Councillor, Tom McNamara, said Clare will now be promoted to a growing marine visitor clientele as part of a wider Cool Route marketing programme. “This new sea route is being marketed internationally and will have a common branding, booking and information system. Clare’s coastal locations already have well-developed landside tourism infrastructure and, therefore, have plenty to offer marine visitors in terms of scenery and attractions,” he added. Brian McCarthy, acting director of economic development at Clare County Council, said the inclusion of …

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Councillor warns of threat to estuary dolphins

Councillor Ian Lynch has expressed concern over what he says is the continued trawling of the Shannon Estuary, claiming it could have a negative effect on the bottle-nosed dolphin population in the area. He says he was contacted by members of the public when two trawlers were seen operating on the estuary. “Trawling the river estuary is not illegal and I appreciate that fishing is an extremely tough industry but the Shannon Estuary is a designated Special Area of Conservation. Pair trawling could have a detrimental effect on the natural ecology of the maritime life,” Councillor Lynch said. “I am calling on the minister to ban trawling in the Shannon Estuary until a detailed study is carried out on the effects this activity could have on the ecological system. Only when this study is completed, will we truly know if trawling our fish stocks is sustainable. As well as an increased risk of capturing seals or dolphins, if we deplete …

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Shannon Estuary drive unveiled

Minister of State for Tourism and Sport Patrick O’Donovan has unveiled the route for the Shannon Estuary Drive – the first in what is hoped to be a series of drives to be developed by Fáilte Ireland in collaboration with local stakeholders The aim is to encourage visitors to discover the variety of inland visitor experiences as they travel along the Wild Atlantic Way. The Shannon Estuary drive is a looped route of approximately 135 miles. “The Shannon Estuary Way new visitor experience provides a significant opportunity for Limerick and Ennis, as gateway towns to the Wild Atlantic Way, and will open up the region’s inland hinterland to visitors as well as support the strong local accommodation base and variety of visitor attractions and services along the route. “As the Wild Atlantic Way continues to grow, we can now start to develop additional experiences for visitors to enjoy and, through initiatives like this, we can start to develop tourism activity …

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Shannon Estuary bird study

A year-long bird population and habitat survey will be carried out along the Shannon Estuary, taking in 1,220 hectares of land. The study is being undertaken by environmental consultants McCarthy Keville O’Sullivan, on behalf of the Shannon Estuary Strategic Infrastructure Framework Plan (SIFP) Steering Group, comprising stakeholders engaged in the development and management of Ireland’s largest and deepest estuary. The region’s local authorities in Clare, Kerry and Limerick have joined with Shannon Group and Shannon Foynes Port Company in promoting ‘Deep Water Marine Investment Opportunities’ on 1,220ha of land at six strategic locations deemed appropriate for marine-related investment. The sites include Moneypoint (280ha) and Innismurry/Cahericon (65ha) in Clare; Askeaton (98ha), Foynes Island (40ha) and Foynes Port and adjoining lands (186ha) in Limerick and Tarbert-Ballylongford landbank (550ha) in Kerry. The proposed bird usage survey area stretches from Limerick City to where the Shannon Estuary meets the Atlantic Ocean in West Clare and North Kerry. The survey will begin in May and is …

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Broadening the Wild Atlantic Way

Two new touring routes, branching off the Wild Atlantic Way, have been launched by Minister of State for Tourism Patrick O’Donovan, as part of a new pilot scheme from Fáilte Ireland to encourage visitors to discover the variety of inland visitor experiences as they travel along the Wild Atlantic Way. The Shannon Estuary Drive and the Burren Drive are the first in a series of drives to be developed adjacent to the Wild Atlantic Way with additional routes planned for later next year. Welcoming the initiative to broaden visitor activity in the west, Minister O’Donovan said, “As the Wild Atlantic Way continues to grow three years since its launch, we can now start to develop additional experiences for visitors to enjoy and, vitally, through initiatives like this we can start to plan for a more even spread of visitors across the West of Ireland.” These new touring routes will incorporate existing sites in the wider geography adjacent to the Wild …

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