Dying Horse Rescued
A YOUNG horse, almost at the point of starvation, was rescued in dramatic circumstances.
A team from the Limerick Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (LSPCA) rescued the horse, believed to be aged between eight and nine months.
It had been dumped in fields in Cratloe before LSPCA animal cruelty inspector James Butler responded to a call to pick it up.
With very little for a horse to eat in the Cratloe fields, Butler found another horse which had tragically died in cold conditions.
The horse they rescued was handed over the Clare Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (CSPCA). It is recuperating in their center.
Annacotty man James said the simple message is, if you cannot afford a horse, don’t buy one.
“The horse was in a poor condition, very weak and hungry. We have tried to locate the owners, but no information has come up, so we are in a bit of a no-win situation,” he said, “It is a bit upsetting.”
Geraldine Nardonne, chairperson of the LSPCA said the group has held meetings with Garda (police) chief superintendent David Sheahan in a bid to get a more rapid response from the force.
This is because when one of the LSPCA’s inspectors spots a horse in need of care, they are not allowed to enter land without a Garda presence in case they are trespassing. Due to cutbacks in Garda resources there can be a long wait, meaning more and more dumped horses are dying.
Won’t Leave Home
A MOTHER of four has said she will barricade herself in her home of 24 years to stop bulldozers demolishing it.
Una Kelly of St. Patrick’s Park is angry with Kildare County Council’s plans to knock down 44 homes to make way for the €6.9 million redevelopment of 22 new homes at the Rathangan estate.
“I will chain myself to the door if they try to move me somewhere else. I am here 24 years and I have raised my four children here and I don’t want to move. My house is not just a house, it’s a home,” declared Kelly.
Since the project was first mooted, some of the residents said they were happy to move from the estate permanently. Others are agreeable to move temporarily and then return to the new houses, although some fear they won’t get back in once the work is completed. There are also some residents who do not want to move at all.
Resident Eamon Broughan believes the majority of the householders want to stay but were afraid of voicing their concerns to the council during the information day and the one to one meetings. He wants to know if the council is going to force people out of their homes.
His wife Sheila pointed out they have been living in St. Patrick’s Park for 25 years.
“People are in limbo. They don’t know whether to do up their house or give it a paint because there is no point if it is going to be knocked down,” she said.
“When we ask for information we are told nothing is written in stone and the plans have not been drawn up yet, but something will have to be written in stone soon.”
The residents feel the council should demolish the derelict buildings, do up the existing homes where people want to stay, and build houses on the vacant sites.
“This makes much more financial sense. In these times of recession, they wouldn’t have to spend €6.9 million,” stressed Broughan.
Boy’s Card Found
A TWO-year-old boy from Enniskillen who lost the card he made for Mother’s Day has been reunited with the card,
Reece Wills, who is just two years and two months old, had made the Mother’s Day card with the help of staff at New Hope Day Nursery for his mum Sonia, but then on the way home the card was lost.
It was found near the Erne Hospital by a local man, Michael Keown, as he walked to a match in Brewster Park. He thought a family might be missing it, so he handed it into the office of the Fermanagh Herald newspaper.
Delighted mother Sonia said the card must have dropped out of the bottom of the buggy as they were going home.
“The girls (at the Nursery) helped Reece and all the other kids to make the cards the week before Mother’s Day,” she said, who explained that Reece is a twin, and so, the card was badly missed as other twin Brooklyn’s card made it home.
Keown had guessed it might have been a child from the New Hope Nursery but, as the building doesn’t have a letterbox he couldn’t post the card in the door.
“I thought, ah the poor child. They spent the time making that for their mother. Mother’s Day was obviously the next morning and the child and mother were going to wake up and there’d be no card,” Keown said.
Sonia didn’t notice the article about the card in the Fermanagh Herald, but a family member spotted it and told her about it.
“My brother was reading the paper and recognized the card as like the ones the staff at New Hope had made,” said Sonia.
New Bag Charge
SHOPPERS in Northern Ireland will soon have to fork out at least 5p for each plastic shopping bag they use.
The charge, which takes effect on April 8, will affect all new single use bags, including those which are biodegradable.
"The levy, a first for Northern Ireland, will apply to the majority of new single use carrier bags, regardless of the material from which the bag is made," said Environment Minister Alex Attwood.
"It is not just on plastic bags but other single use bags from other natural materials. There are still some occasions when a bag will be provided free of charge."
Bags for medication, meat and hot food will be exempt from the 5p levy, as will some small bags.
"At the moment we are using around 250 million carrier bags each year in Northern Ireland and we need to cut that number dramatically to reduce environmental damage. The evidence from other countries shows that a bag levy is a very effective way of doing this. Bring your own bag and you will not have to pay the levy," the minister added.
No Mansion Takers
HE was offered €10 million for it at the height of the boom, and perhaps he should have taken it.
Because a month after going on the market for just €990,000, former Westlife singer Shane Filan has still not found a buyer for his home.
Set in five acres at Carraroe, outside Sligo town, estate agents had described the five-bedroom detached home as a "modern-day mansion with no expense spared" when the property first went on the market in February.
But despite several viewings, a buyer has yet to be found.
Now it looks as if another price-cut might be needed to shift the house, which cost Filan an estimated €3 million to complete in 2004.
"The property is still on the market and a viewing can be arranged," estate agents Sherry Fitzgerald Draper said.
Initially, there had been huge interest when the house first came on the market. But like so many other luxury properties for sale nationwide, it has struggled to find a buyer.
However an insider remained confident one would be found for the home, which has been described as "exceptional by any standards." Features include a gym, a snooker room, two living rooms, a music room and a study.
All this is behind electronically controlled gates on landscaped grounds with a lake, patio and terraces as well as a golfing area.
In 2006, a Japanese businessman offered Filan €10 million for the house.
The 32-year-old, who sold 43 million records worldwide with Westlife, was declared bankrupt in the U.K. last June where he now lives. More than €18 million is owed to creditors from the building company owned by Shane Filan and his brother Finbarr.