News from around the 32 Irish counties


As the dust settles after the tumultuous South Antrim election battle, the DUP's William McCrea gets back to work as the constituency's MP, while the area's Ulster Unionists must pick up the pieces and go back to the drawing board.
 (Source: The Antrim Guardian)   

The owner of a taxi business who sustained serious brain injuries after a large tree fell and crushed the school minibus he was driving has secured €1.25 million damages. At the High Court last week, Justice John Quirke awarded the sum to John McKenna, who requires permanent care as a result of injuries suffered when the tree struck the minibus containing himself and seven secondary school children. The vehicle was crushed and its occupants trapped for a time.
(Source: The Irish Times)

Two of Carlow’s most talented squash players had their dreams of winning a European title ruined the week before last thanks to the Icelandic ash cloud. 

Elaine Ware and Shaun Hennessy, were due to fly to Prague as part of the Irish team for the European Championships, having spent the last year preparing for what would have been the biggest squash event of their young careers. However fresh eruptions of ash from the Icelandic volcano destroyed their travel plans, leaving them stranded in Carlow.
(Source: The Carlow Nationalist)

Knowing that when jobs come and go, we still have our essence of who we are as a people, our heritage, community and belonging; Minister for Tourism, Culture and Sport, Mary Hanafin, has firmly backed All Ireland Fleadh 2010, which is to be held in Cavan from August 16 to 22.
(Source: The Anglo Celt)

Pubs in Clare have experienced a drop of 60% in business in the past two years and are struggling to stay trading, according to Gerry Collins, chairman of the Clare branch of the Vintners Federation of Ireland.
He said there are a combination of factors for the fall in business, citing commercial rates, drink-driving laws, the recession, the existence of head shops and low drink prices in supermarkets among the challenges publicans face. Collins has been the proprietor of Charlie Stewart’s on Parnell Street, Ennis, for more than seven years.
(Source: The Clare Champion)

A trucker who was caught using a magnet to distort the reading on his 'spy in the cab' tachograph has been fined €7,000 and disqualified from driving for two years in the first case of this kind to come before an Irish court.
(Source: The Corkman)

Inishowen could soon be taking the first major steps to economic recovery - thanks, believe it or not, to David Cameron and Nick Clegg.
With Britain's new leadership duo already indicating the UK's VAT rate will rise to around 20 per cent in addition to a number of other harsh cost-saving initiatives there could be tough times ahead in the North - and that could turn the tide in Inishowen's favor.
(Source: The Derry Journal)

Hotels and bed and breakfast providers in Donegal are losing out on potential business because 'out of town' wedding parties can't find a church or priests here for their big day.
One hotel has claimed prospective brides and grooms are wanting to come to Donegal from the larger urban areas of Dublin and Belfast to celebrate their wedding - but many are being put off because they can't book a suitable church or available priest in this county.
(Source: Donegal Democrat)

One-in-three Irish language schools in Northern Ireland are failing to provide satisfactory education for their pupils, it can be revealed.
Calls have now been made for an inquiry into the provision of Irish language education after it emerged that seven schools were forced to put urgent action plans in place after being rated unsatisfactory by inspectors are in the Irish medium (IM) sector.
(Source: The Belfast Telegraph)

Ryan Tubridy has broken his silence on reports that he's due to step into his late pal Gerry Ryan's shoes on his radio show.
The RTE star told the Herald it was still 'too soon' since his friend's tragic death on April 30 to become involved in any speculation regarding the 9am to 12pm slot on 2FM.
(Source: The Evening Herald)

Police in Fermanagh last week acknowledged that the overall crime rate for Fermanagh for the year ending March 31st last is up on the previous year, with drugs trafficking and fraud and forgery leading the way.
The number of crimes reported to police in the Fermanagh area in the 2009/2010 financial year increased by 5.1 per cent, up from 2,808 to 2,952.
(Source: The Fermanagh Herald)

An area of Zambia, which has the highest level of recorded violence against young girls traveling to and from school, can now offer 40 of them a safe house thanks to money raised in Loughrea.
Emma Gilchreest (30), from the Coorheen area of the town, spent a year working voluntarily in the country for FAWEZA (Forum for African Women Educationalists of Zambia).
(Source: Galway News)