News from around the 32 counties of Ireland



Postal staff have escaped injury after a packet containing a firework exploded in a Northern Ireland mail sorting office. The complex at Royal Mail House in Tomb Street, Belfast, was evacuated after the blast sparked a security alert at around 11am last Friday. Army bomb experts and emergency services were called to the scene to inspect the premises. The small explosion took place in a returns centre which handles mail from across Northern Ireland and Britain.

(Source: Belfast Telegraph)


The men were arrested by the PSNI Serious Crime Branch during searches in Lurgan, County Armagh, last Friday morning. The searches were linked to dissident republican activity, a PSNI spokeswoman said. In the Republic of Ireland, four men are still being questioned about a "bomb factory" in County Kildare. Five men were arrested after nine mortars and component were found at the farm in Quinsborough.

(Source: BBC News Northern Ireland)


Local gardaí (police) were kept busy last week as there was a sharp increase in burglaries and drink-driving around the county. Enterprising thieves made off with a variety of goods from several premises across Carlow. According to a spokesperson for Carlow gardaí, there were at least ten burglaries in the county over the past seven days, a significant increase on other weeks.

(Source: The Carlow Nationalist)


At 5.10am on Monday morning, January 10, 2011, a lone male wearing a balaclava used a crow bar to break the window of Greene’s pharmacy at Market Street, Ballyjamesduff. The man then entered the shop via the broken window and stole perfumes, other toiletries as well as digital cameras from the pharmacy. Footage from cctv in the town show the man leaving the scene in a Mitsubishi Pajero jeep.

(Source: The Angle Celt)


The number of new 2011 cars registered in Clare for the first 10 days of this year has increased by 50% on the same period last year, according to figures obtained from the Revenue Commissioners. Last year, there were a total of 96 new cars registered up to January 10, 2010, while for the same time this year that number has increased to 144. While that figure has increased, the number of used cars registered so far this year has dropped on last year’s figures.

(Source: The Clare Champion)


The Roche’s Point foghorn sounded for the last time last week after more than 100 year’s service. The Commissioners of Irish Lights (CIL) also discontinued eight other fog signals around the country as it aims to modernize its systems and cutback on potential expenditures.
Speaking last week, Desmond O’Brien from the CIL said that, because of cutbacks, it would be too expensive to upgrade and maintain the foghorns and that, in the age of modern technology; the long-serving foghorn can’t compete.

Source: (Cork Independent)


A mass grave dating back to the 17th century and the Siege of Derry has been unearthed under a Presbyterian Church in Londonderry.  Three sets of bones were discovered under the floor of First Derry Presbyterian Church during a restoration project. It is thought the site is the final resting place of “a huge number” of Presbyterians who died during the siege.

(Source: Belfast Telegraph)


Quick-thinking gardaí (police) have been praised for saving the life of a woman they plucked from freezing waters in Dungloe last Tuesday. Garda Inspector Sylvie Henry told The Donegal Democrat last Wednesday. "Three gardaí were escorting a prisoner from Dungloe Court back to Letterkenny when, at 12.20pm, they noticed a woman going into Dungloe Lake at the Little Bridge. Part of the lake was frozen and she was going under. Garda Paul McGee and Garda Darren Carter went into the water and dragged the woman back to safety, assisted by Garda Mulroe.

(Source: Donegal Democrat)


A cocaine-snorting prison officer who gave into blackmail threats and smuggled unauthorized packages into Maghaberry in a bid to save his marriage has been jailed for nine months. Craigavon Crown Court Judge Desmond Marrinan told 46-year-old Darrall Scott, a father-of-two from Winona Lodge, Donaghcloney, Co Down, that his “breach of trust” was so serious he had to be jailed to deter others.

(Source: Belfast Telegraph)


Dublin City Council is to establish a review group to examine errors made in its handling of the cold snap. Last week's announcement follows concerns that the public suffered because of a "poor lack of communication" during the extreme weather and because of problems incurred as a result of water shortages nationwide.  Dublin's Lord Mayor, Cllr Gerry Breen (FG) said the review group would be formed in the coming weeks.

(Source: The Evening Hearld)