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News from around the 32 counties of Ireland

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ANTRIM

A budget airline has vowed that it will not return to Belfast International until airport top brass address “safety concerns” on its runways.

Jet2, who fly to Ibiza, Lanzarote, Tenerife, Geneva, Pisa and a range of U.K. destinations, headed for the departure lounge two weekends ago stressing that it felt it had no alternative but to wing its way from B.I.A. and switch to bitter rivals Belfast City.

In a statement issued on their website, the operator stressed that their first concern was for their passengers.
[Source: Antrim Guardian]

ARMAGH

An aspiring young model from Crossmaglen has landed herself a leading role in the current Brown Thomas department store advertising campaign being screened until the end of this year. Former Sacred Heart Grammar School pupil, Niamh Cunningham, told us she is thrilled to have been chosen for such a high-profile ad campaign and hopes the exposure will lead to more projects for her.

The blonde beauty is certainly no stranger to the camera lens, having been modeling for the last three years, and she credits her Belfast-based modeling agency with helping her win the coveted B.T. role. Believing her to be perfect for the job, her agent forwarded Niamh’s profile to the advertising company and, after meeting her in person, they agreed.
[Source: Examiner Newspaper]

CARLOW

Improvement works on a major local waterway could create an extra 130 jobs in the region and generate some $16 million over the next 10 years.

A new report by the minister for the environment, community and local government has revealed that improvement works to the Barrow Navigation, which runs through counties Laois, Kildare, Carlow and Kilkenny, will cost around $12.4 million. However, this is offset by an expected $15.3 million in generated revenue.
[Source: Leinster Express]

CAVAN

Gardaí (police) in Bailieborough will prepare a file for the D.P.P., after upgrading the case of a missing man to murder – despite his body never being found.

One month ago, Gardaí investigating the disappearance of father-of-three Gerard Daly from his Cornaveigh home made a "huge" breakthrough and upgraded the case to murder.

On Monday, March 11, a man in his 40s was arrested at his home on suspicion of murder, after a search of a property in the area. That arrest occurred in the Bailieborough area and local detectives then "intensified" their investigations in light of those developments.
[Source: The Anglo Celt]

CLARE

People in west Clare, who are unconnected to crime, may have vital knowledge in relation to recent burglaries in the region.

That’s according to Garda (Police) Superintendent Gerry Wall, who confirmed a number of serious incidents are being followed up.

Gardaí are currently investigating the second aggravated burglary in a week after three masked men entered a house in Kilmihil and beat the lone occupant with a bar in the early hours of Good Friday.
The incident occurred between midnight on Thursday, March 28, and Friday, Mar. 29, when the three men entered a house at Lacken, Kilmihil by breaking the front window.
[Source: Clare Champion]

CORK

A car crash last Wednesday in Youghal drew the curiosity of onlookers around 8:40 a.m on day last week., but nobody was hurt.

A man driving his car on Mill road, near Cork Hill, mysteriously crashed into two parked cars causing substantial damage.

No one was hurt in the crash and Gardaí (police) have sealed off the area for technical examination.

It is not yet known how the man lost control of his car but a Garda spokesperson said the driver stayed on the scene and was cooperative with the Gardaí.
[Source: Cork Independent]

DERRY

Derry firefighters were called into action to tackle a staggering 114 gorse fires last week.

The problem was so severe in some areas of the city that residents battled flames with garden hoses in order to protect their properties.

Jon McCourt, who assisted in the battle reported: “Watching four different groups of young people lighting fires in the Marianus Glen alone.”
[Source: Derry Journal]

DONEGAL

The number of applications to put children into state care being made in Letterkenny significantly outnumbers other similarly-sized towns, new figures reveal.

The figures from the courts service show 225 care orders for children were granted in Letterkenny in 2011.

This compares to one in Mullingar for the same year, eight in Killarney, 10 in Athlone, 21 in Castlebar and 23 in Carlow. Letterkenny had marginally more applications granted than Galway and was only exceeded by Dublin, Cork, Limerick and Waterford.
[Source: Donegal Democrat]

DOWN

Supermarket giant Tesco has moved to alleviate local concerns about the nature of its recruitment processes for posts in the brand new Newry store, due to open its doors June 6.

It would seem that the positive news of a significant jobs boost for the area has now given way to widespread cynicism, with public criticism being aired via social media and news forums in recent days regarding what some view as an arbitrary process of selection based on a basic questionnaire which does not detail employment or education history. Many applicants have complained of already being rejected on the basis of the initial questionnaire, while others feel the sheer number of rejections being reported suggests randomness to the selection process that means job seekers are missing out on a potential job without being properly assessed.
[Source: Examiner Newspaper]

DUBLIN

Ireland’s first ever female assassin was on her way to kill a second man when she was arrested by armed Gardaí (police).

Defiant Rose Lynch gave a clenched fist salute and exclaimed "Mná na hÉireann, tiocfaidh ár lá" after unexpectedly pleading guilty last Tuesday to killing father-of-two David Darcy.

It has now emerged she had bullets in her handbag when she was arrested on the Naas Road in Dublin on suspicion of Mr. Darcy's murder.
[Source: Evening Herald]

FERMANAGH

A woman has been arrested following what is believed to have been the stabbing of man in Enniskillen last Tuesday night.

The incident took place in the East Bridge Street area of Enniskillen, and police have arrested a “32-year-old woman on suspicion of [grievous bodily harm].”

At approximately 10:30 p.m., police received the report that a 32-year-old man had been assaulted. He was taken for treatment to an arm injury and was released a short time later.
[Source: Fermanagh Herald]

GALWAY

A 15-year-old boy is now attending school regularly ever since a judge warned him last month that he would keep jailing his parents until he went back to class.

The case was back before Galway District Court last Wednesday where it was heard last month that the boy had missed 91 school days out of 114 this year alone and had a long history of truancy.

The Galway teenager, who is in his Junior Certificate year, had been asked by Judge Alan Mitchell at Galway District Court last month to decide which of his parents should go to jail because he was refusing to go to school.
[Source: Galway Bay FM]

KERRY

A parish priest in Kerry said that he is extremely grateful for a $130,000 donation.

The check was delivered in person to Fr. Sean Hanafin of St. John's Catholic Church in Tralee by a woman from Hong Kong.

He said he was amazed when the check cleared.
[Source: Irish Examiner]

KILDARE

The murder of Dublin native and Coneyboro resident Jamie Lindsay comes against a backdrop of increasing concern and frustration about the sale of illicit drugs in the Athy area.

Statistics that emerged in the past year showed that the area had up to 50 known heroin users, while heroin abuse has recently been described as “a major problem” by a local community worker.

Noreen Ardill of the County Kildare Leader Partnership has been involved in the setting up of a support group for the families of those affected by drug or alcohol addiction in the Athy area.
[Source: Kildare Nationalist]

KILKENNY

City councilors are up-in-arms following one of the strangest and most bizarre incidents involving Travelers and crime for many years.

It has left law-abiding citizens wondering what’s next while people in the city suburb occurred fear for their lives but are afraid to come forward in case of reprisals.

The shock and fear centers around a city resident who performed his civic duty in stopping two members of the Traveling community from robbing fuel from his home in the early morning that has been cautioned by Gardaí (police). The man, of impeccable character was forced to chase the pair of balaclava-wearing Travelers after they left his house with a five-liter drum of home heating oil. After catching one of them, he held him down until the Gardaí came after he made a 999 call on his mobile phone. There was an altercation as he tried to escape and the homeowner gave as good as he got.
[Source: Kilkenny People]

LAOIS

Almost 400 people packed into the Portlaoise Heritage Hotel on Friday night, April 5, for the crowning of the 2013 Laois Rose.

Interest in the Rose of Tralee competition is increasing every year, and this year 19 girls took to the stage.

Performing arts student, Roisin Ryan, kicked the night off with her rendition of “On My Own” from the musical Les Misérables.

Jenny Coogan entered the Laois Rose for her grandfather who is originally from County Laois but moved to Co. Carlow. The musically-talented lady had previously played for the Presentation Band, Carlow at the Rose of Tralee.

The youngest rose, Charlene Duff, had the audience up and moving with her “repeat after me routine.”’

But it was the last rose of the night who left a lasting impression, as Sarah Conlon was crowned Laois Rose for 2013.
[Source: Leinster Express]

LEITRIM

Leitrim’s filmmakers of the future received a huge boost two weeks ago at the Fresh Film Festival. Students of Action School of Film from Leitrim and Roscommon traveled to the national finals of Ireland’s most prestigious youth film event in Limerick on Thursday, April 4, and did not leave empty-handed.

The filmmakers were awarded the R.T.É. award for their short film “Repulsive.” The award is given annually to a group or individual filmmaker who impresses R.T.É. programmers with a film lasting just 60 seconds. “Repulsive” was made by students on the Action School of Film summer course which took place in Carrick-on-Shannon last July.
[Source: Leitrim Observer]

LIMERICK

The State pathologist, Professor Marie Cassidy, said Limerick’s former reputation as “Stab City” is now wholly undeserved, as the murder rate in Limerick has dropped dramatically in recent years.

Professor Cassidy was speaking at the University of Limerick last week, where she discussed her career in science, and the promotion of women in the field in general.

“Limerick has been very, very quiet thankfully, and hopefully it will remain so. Glasgow can take back its title again, and resume being ‘Stab City’,” said Prof. Cassidy, who is from the Scottish city and began her career there.
[Source: Limerick Leader]

LONGFORD

Last weekend saw Livin Dred Theatre Company bring their production of “The Bridge Below the Town” to Longford’s Backstage Theatre. It’s the latest collaboration between Pat McCabe and Padraic McIntyre, and is based on McCabe’s novel “The Stray Sod Country.”

The play featured local actress Lorna Quinn, who became a household name when she played the part of Lucy in one of the most dramatic plotlines in R.T.É.’s Fair City last year. “At the moment I’m enjoying my return to theatre with ‘Bedroom Farce’ at the Gate Theatre, and now with ‘The Bridge Below the Town,’” she says. “I would love to do more TV – we’ll just have to wait and see.”
[Source: Longford Leader]

LOUTH

Louth County Councilor Tomás Sharkey has reacted angrily to news that the x-ray service at Louth County Hospital is to be cut at weekends.

“The H.S.E. has informed me that they will be cutting x-ray cover at Louth County Hospital by 16 hours every weekend. The say that from now on the 9 a.m. -  9 p.m. service is to be cut to 2 p.m. – 6 p.m. on Saturdays, Sundays and bank holidays.

“This is bad news for our hospital. It indicates that the Department of Health is willing to cut back on the services available to the public. The H.S.E. admits that no money will be saved with this latest move.”
[Source: Dundalk Democrat]

MAYO

A new initiative that promises to bestow Ireland’s “warmest welcome” upon visitors to Castlebar in the year of The Gathering was launched by An Taoiseach (Prime Minister) Enda Kenny on Saturday morning, April 6.

The unique initiative sees visitors given their very own local “welcome ambassador” to Castlebar by simply registering their details on lovecastlebar.com. The welcome ambassador will greet visitors on arrival, bring them on a tour of Castlebar and help them discover all the local hidden gems the town has to offer. As an added bonus and where possible, ambassadors will be equipped to assist visitors in tracing their Mayo roots. To date, over 100 Mayo natives have volunteered to act as ambassadors for the town.
[Source: The Mayo News]

MEATH

The tradition of burying people in their own parish or village may soon disappear with the introduction of a major restructuring of the cemeteries service by Meath County Council.

As cemeteries in local towns and villages continue to fill up, officials have warned that it will not be possible in future for the council to provide replacement burial grounds throughout the county.

Cemeteries may in future have to be provided on a “regional” basis. However, although up to 10 percent of deceased people are cremated, the council has firmly ruled out the building of a crematorium in the county.
[Source: Meath Chronicle]

MONAGHAN

A parish priest was involved in the sexual abuse of some children in Donagh in the 1970s and 1980s, the B.B.C. can reveal.

Canon Peter Duffy, from County Monaghan, was an uncle of former Bishop of Clogher Joseph Duffy.

He died in 1994 and is buried in Donagh. The police have investigated cases involving three victims.
[Source: BBC News]

OFFALY

Offaly has recorded the biggest percentage drop in planning applications in the country in the first quarter of the year in comparison with the same period in 2012.

That’s according to the latest edition of the National Housing Construction Index compiled and issued by Link2Plans (link2plans.com).

The figures show that Offaly suffered another 48 percent drop in applications in the first quarter of 2013 with just 14 applications received compared to 27 for the same period in 2012. After Offaly, Limerick (39 percent), Wexford (36 percent), Laois (32 percent) and Carlow (32 percent) recorded the sharpest falls.
[Source: Offaly Express]

ROSCOMMON

[Sinn Féin’s] strength has traditionally been concentrated in Dublin and it admits that its biggest challenge ahead of the next general election will be to develop the organization in rural areas across the country.

“You have such a strong tradition of Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael in most rural areas — very little of the Labour Party in rural areas — that to come in and build up a structure in those areas takes time,” said Connemara- based Senator Trevor Ó Clochartaigh.

“But we’re finding that doing something like an ard fheis (party conference) in a place like Castlebar, [mobilizes] not just County Mayo — but it means that the people in Roscommon, Sligo, Leitrim and Galway have to step up to the plate as well.”
[Source: Irish Examiner]

SLIGO

A statement issued by the Department of Environment, Community and Local Government two weeks ago has stated that Minister Phil Hogan has no plans to amalgamate Leitrim and Sligo County Councils despite the fact that both local authorities will be losing their county managers over the next few months.

Late last month it emerged that Leitrim’s county manager, Jackie Maguire, is taking up the position of Meath county manager – subject to ratification. Sligo’s County Manager Hubert Kearns is expected to retire shortly from his position.
[Source: Leitrim Observer]

TIPPERARY

A two-year-old Thurles child has been seriously injured by a horse having been kicked in the head by the animal.

Neighbors, family members and friends have been left shocked by the incident that is being investigated by Gardaí (police). Emergency services attended the scene and the hospital helicopter arrived to convey the injured boy to hospital as a matter of immediate urgency. His condition is described as serious.

The Rosemount estate on the outskirts of Thurles town contains over 200 houses of varying styles, most of which are owner occupied, although quite a few are rented also.
[Source: Tipperary Star]

TYRONE

A Brackaville lady is hoping to be the second-ever Tyrone Rose to make it to the final of the International Rose of Tralee Festival, which is in its 54th year and will see 32 roses converge on Tralee in August.

Joanne O'Neill (22) was crowned the Tyrone Rose for 2013 at the Greenvale Hotel in Cookstown in front of a packed house on Wednesday night, April 3, as well as many online followers as the event was streamed live on the Internet courtesy of Silvermist Media based in Fintona.

Joanne O'Neill along with the 14 other roses did their friends, families and communities extremely proud, giving the audience a fantastic night's entertainment with all their talents on display.
[Source: Tyrone Courier]

WATERFORD

Local fast food diner Eddie Rocket’s was destroyed in a massive blaze, which gutted the premises during the early hours of Saturday, April 9.

Little is left of the Cork Road diner but charred black remains of the once vibrant décor. Two weekends ago Gardaí (police) carried out a technical examination of the scene, but it is believed that the fire is not suspicious in nature.

Emergency services were alerted to the fire at 2:30 a.m. on Saturday and seven units of the fire service attended, four from Waterford City and others from Tramore and Dunmore East.
[Source: Waterford News & Star]

WESTMEATH

The Mullingar Park Hotel will be host to a visitor who has the potential to vastly improve trade relations between Mullingar and some of the most important countries in the world – those in Asia, writes Morgan Beausang.

Dr. Harry Tseng, Taiwanese ambassador to Ireland, is making a visit to Mullingar in order to investigate into just how connections and communications can be improved between the Westmeath area and Taiwan.

He will be speaking with representatives of the I.D.A. and Enterprise Ireland, along with the Westmeath county manager, and groups.
[Source: Westmeath Examiner]

WEXFORD

A postmortem was carried out last Thursday morning, on the body of a man killed in an industrial accident in County Wexford on April 10.

The 48-year-old was pronounced dead at a plant hire facility in Fethard-on-Sea at around 6 p.m.

His body was taken to Waterford Regional Hospital.
[Source: Waterford News & Star]

WICKLOW

A 16-year-old has died after taking part in a hike with friends from school.

Neil Quinlan, from Cabinteely in south Dublin, had just finished a six mile hike in Glendalough, County Wicklow, on Tuesday when he suddenly took ill.

The student, of St. Conleth's College in Ballsbridge, complained of feeling unwell on returning to the hostel and collapsed in front of his friends.

He was airlifted to Tallaght Hospital where died a short time later.
[Source: Irish Independent]
 

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