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Tag Archives: west clare

Woulfe joins Hassett in Independent Ireland double act in West Clare

A West Clare farm leader has joined a new political alliance which will see three farmers contesting the Local Elections on June 7. Independent candidate, Joseph Woulfe has joined Independent Ireland following recent discussions with its main political leaders in recent weeks. Interestingly, Independent Ireland now has two candidates contesting the Kilrush Electoral Area Mr Woulfe and Kilkee-based dairy and beef farmer, Kevin Hassett. The alliance’s third candidate, Mathew Moroney has thrown his hat into the election ring in the Killaloe Electoral Area. Before Mr Woulfe joined Independent Ireland, he had wrongly assumed the new alliance used a party whip system like other mainstream political parties, which is not the case. The West Clare barber says joined the party because it is geared towards supporting rural development and tackling issues affecting people living in rural areas. “I believe it will benefit constituents for me to be part of an alliance of like-minded people,” he said. “Independent Ireland candidates can share …

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Tara finds inner peace in Miltown Malbay

West Clare based American writer, Tara Darlene Smith, has released a powerful new memoir exploring war, relationships, mental health and healing “I knew nothing about Ireland at the time, I certainly never imagined that one day I’d be living here as a writer,” says Tara Darlene Smith as she reflects on the odyssey of releasing her first book. Twenty years ago, in 2004, the then 22-year-old arrived at Shannon Airport as a US soldier en route to Iraq. The brief stopover gave her enough time to purchase a silver shamrock necklace in a green box labelled “Tara,” which she wore every day at war. Thirteen years later, she returned as a civilian and a tourist to begin what she calls a “love affair with Clare”. It has been, she says, “a journey of healing the traumas of childhood and of war” and “discovering a sense of peace I never thought possible”. In her candid and gripping memoir entitled Sunflowers in …

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Rural Clare left out of active travel revolution

North and West Clare councillors have called on the Minister for Transport, Eamon Ryan (GP) to restore the Active Travel Scheme, and apply it equally to urban and rural areas. At the September meeting of the West Clare municipal district, Cathaoirleach, Councillor Ian Lynch (IND) put forward a motion to request that the Active Travel Scheme be applied equally to urban and rural areas. Another motion by Councillor Joe Garrihy (FG) called for the Minister to restore the same scheme. Cllr Lynch said “I think it’s important we put pressure on” adding North Clare and West Clare was not getting enough to manage successfully and would need to either get its fair share or get a different scheme set up.” Cllr Garrihy described Active Travel as “one of the most exciting schemes” ever established, and said it was “totally unacceptable” that it was not extended to North Clare, adding it needed to be restored “on the double” to make up …

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Call for west Clare roads to be bumped up winter gritting list

A WEST Clare councillor has called for the reclassification of regional roads in the district to facilitate more regular gritting during a cold snap. Councillor Murphy proposed the R487, R488 between Kilkee, Carrigaholt and Kilbaha, and the R473 between Kildysart and Labasheeda, be included as strategic regional routes in future winter service plans as Priority Two. Speaking at a recent West Clare Municipal District meeting, Councillor Murphy said these two strategic regional routes were not included in the Winter Plan for treating roads, despite the fact they served significant populations. The Kilkee Councillor said the R487 is effectively a main road to the Loop Head Peninsula for about 3,000 people. “These roads should be treated as Priority Two, which means their treatment will not be done on an ad-hoc basis. This would ensure they are a core part of the treatment of roads rather than we will get to them if we can. “This is exactly the kind of stuff …

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€4.5m wage spend at Trump International despite pandemic

TRUMP International spent just under €4.5 million on wages and salaries in 2021, newly filed accounts show. While the company was one of West Clare’s largest employers with an average of 230 staf in 2019, this dipped to 112 in the first year of the pandemic, before coming back up to 137 last year. The amount spent on wages increased by €1.27 million in 2021 compared to the previous year. Trump International made an operating profit of €509,892 for the year, rebounding from an operating loss of almost €2 million in 2020. However, despite the operating profit, its net assets declined by over €1 million, largely due to depreciation and amortisation of €2.054 million. During the year the company received €1.85 million in government grants. While 2021 was a difficult year because of Covid restrictions, a note accompanying the accounts said Trump International had performed quite well in the circumstances. “While the hotel had to close to the public for …

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Water supply in west Clare gone ‘beyond breaking point’

THE water supply in west Clare has gone “beyond breaking point”, a meeting of local councillors heard. Councillor Gabriel Keating put forward a motion at the recent meeting of west and North councillors asking that Irish Water, Transport Infrastructure Ireland and the County Council resolve the “long standing frequent bursts and outages due to the poor condition of the asbestos watermain situated in the raised bog rampart on the N67 south of Doonbeg Village.” He said that the N67 south of Doonbeg is deteriorating and is a health and safety hazard, as well as “a regular inconvenience to the residents of the area due to the frequency of bursts over a number of years”. Councillor Keating said that dealing with the issue every time there is a leak is costly, even if an overall project requires a good deal of funding. “I’d love to know how much each leak costs,” he mused. He said that people are left without water …

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Sat navs blamed for heavy tourist traffic on small Clare roads

A NUMBER of councillors in West and North Clare have raised concerns about the impact of tourist vehicles using smaller roads and boreens in the district. The Green Party’s Liam Grant was first to raise the matter at a meeting of councillors, in a motion stating, “A number of bus operators are using unsuitable roads to travel to tourist attractions in North Clare. I call on Clare County Council to write to the National Transport Authority and request stricter enforcement of the allocated routes. “I would also request that the Cliffs of Moher consider not allowing bus operators, who do not take the allocated routes, park at the visitor centre.” The finger was also pointed, however, at GPS navigation systems, which routinely point drivers towards the quickest, most direct routes, regardless of the state of the road. Later in the meeting, Councillor Ian Lynch had a motion which asked for signs to be put up in certain places, urging people …

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Clare ambulance staff ‘run ragged’ due to resource shortages

AMBULANCE services in Clare came under the spotlight at the monthly meeting of Clare County Council, when a call was made to review the deployment system.  Councillor Ian Lynch demanded that the Health Minister review the ‘dynamic deployment’ process operated by the National Ambulance Service (NAS), asserting that the system does not work in rural areas.  “I have been raising this issue since I’ve been elected,” the Independent member said, “and it has been falling on deaf ears. The service is under-funded across the country and to talk about international best practice and dynamic deployment is a smokescreen. “That’s fine in urban centres, but it doesn’t work in rural Ireland. I have had contact from Waterford, Galway and Mayo on this and if someone who is a critical patient has to wait 90 minutes for an ambulance, it’s clear that the system isn’t working.” The Kilrush man noted recent tributes to the emergency services by broadcaster Marty Morrissey. On The …

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