Weekly news from around the 32 counties of Ireland



Northern Ireland’s blossoming arts sector is enjoying an unprecedented financial bonanza, which has seen world-class cultural facilities built and improved across the province. With the new look Ulster Museum set to open its doors to the public this week, the massive £150 million investment injection has transformed our arts infrastructure from a dilapidated state into something to be proud of.

(Source: The Belfast Telegraph)



The widow of a Crossmaglen councilor who died almost two years ago says she is ‘overjoyed’ and feels ‘truly blessed’ at the birth of their twin sons. Collette Fee gave birth to the babies in Daisy Hill Hospital on Tuesday last.  The twins are the only children of her and her late husband, John, who tragically died from a brain tumor in November, 2007 at the age of just 43. Named after his father, John Fitzgerald was born first at 3.45am, weighing in at 5lb 7oz.  He was followed thirteen minutes later by his brother, Aaron Patrick, who tipped the scales at 6lb. Collette says the birth of her sons is a joyous occasion, albeit one tinged with sadness. She revealed that prior to beginning treatment for his illness, she and John pursued the option of planning for future children. She says she is delighted to fulfill their dream of having children and adds that her new family will help replace the sense of loss she has felt since her husband’s death.

(Source: The Examiner)



The search is on in Carlow to find two beneficiaries of a will that is believed to be worth a six-figure sum. Despite exhaustive searches to track down two of the beneficiaries who were bequeathed a substantial sum of money following the death of pharmacist Michael O’Connor, the lucky pair has yet to come forward to claim their legacy. In his last will and testament, the well-known Waterford-based businessman who once practiced on Carlow’s Tullow St, left Septa and Marian Stephens - believed to be a mother and daughter, who could originally be from Carlow - a large portion of his substantial estate. Mr. O’Connor operated a successful pharmacy business at The Quay, Waterford for a number of years. He died on 12 May 2005.

(Source: The Carlow Nationalist)



Local politicians, traders and community interests in Cootehill and Bailieboro are gearing themselves up for a battle with higher authority following last week's revelation that the Courts Service is planning to terminate district court sittings in both east Cavan towns virtually with immediate effect. The Courts Service confirmed that following consultation with the presiding judge (Sean MacBride), it's proposed to merge the district court area of Cootehill with Cavan and the Bailieboro district court area with Virginia.

(Source: The Anglo Celt)



Clare County Council is set to “freeze” more than 4,000 acres from development in response to Department of Environment concerns on “unjustified and unsustainable” over zoning. The move means that during the lifetime of the current development plan to 2014, no housing development would take place on 4,171 acres of land zoned for housing around Ennis. The local authority was given a deadline of Friday, October 16th, to address the over zoning in the Ennis Development Plan only months after it was adopted.

(Source: The Irish Times)



Gardai (police) are investigating an incident in Mallow two weeks ago where a man is alleged to have fled with a young baby while holding a knife to fend off concerned onlookers. It is believed that the matter began inside the local Tesco supermarket in what has been described as a 'domestic' type incident. An argument is thought to have started between the man and his partner. It is believed the man then got involved in an altercation with his partner and subsequently attempted to leave the supermarket with the baby. Mr. Jean Almeiba, a security guard at the Tesco store in Mallow, spoke of his terror, claiming that the man pulled out a knife when he (Almeida) followed the man from the store. Mr. Almeida said the man then got into a car with the baby and drove off. It is believed Gardai later succeeded in getting the man to surrender the baby. The baby is now believed to be safe and the matter is being investigated.

(Source: The Corkman)



Foyle View Special School in Derry is coming under increasing pressure to close after the death of a second pupil from swine flu. 14 years-old Ashleigh Lynch died last Wednesday at Altnagelvin Hospital where she had been receiving treatment for the condition. Her death came ten days after Orla O'Kane, who was also 14, died from complications arising from swine flu.

(Source: The Derry Journal)



A number of leading Austrian journalists from both newspapers and lifestyle magazines were in the north-west region last week to experience all that the beautiful region has to offer. The reporters, who were carefully selected and invited by Tourism Ireland, visited the Glencolmcille area, the Glenveagh National Park and also enjoyed a walking tour of the historic walls in Derry. The visit of these influential journalists is part of Tourism Ireland’s press visit program, which aims to increase awareness of the north west and the island of Ireland among key journalists and opinion-formers overseas, and ultimately potential holidaymakers.