News from Ireland - news from around the 32 counties



Antrim Borough Council has been urged to assist families who have been left to foot huge repair bills after car thieves went on the rampage in Antrim Cemetery - by one of its own members.

Shortly before 1.30pm last Saturday (November 12) police received a report that a car had reversed over a number of graves, causing substantial damage.

Three men who were in the car at the time are understood to have made off on foot from the scene.
One is described as being 20, with short dark hair wearing a pink tee shirt, track bottoms and a cast on his right forearm.
Another is described as being 16, with a crew cut style hair wearing a royal blue tee shirt and jeans. The third is described as being 16-17 years old, 5'9" tall wearing a blue hooded top and jeans.

The vehicle used in the 'joyride' was stolen from the Kingsmere Avenue area of north Belfast earlier in the day.

The car was taken away for forensic examination leaving toppled headstones, smashed surrounds and scattered flowers in its wake.
In total nine graves were desecrated, causing sorrowing families unnecessary pain as they grieved for their loved ones during Remembrance weekend.
 Alliance rep Neil Kelly told the Antrim Guardian that Council 'cannot simply wash its hands' of the carnage, despite advice from insurers that it is not liable for the estimated £7,000 of damage.
(Source: Antrim Guardian)


Two teenage girls have been sexually assaulted in separate attacks in the early hours of Saturday.
One of the attacks happened in the Templegrove area of Londonderry at around 3.15am.

The teen was raped by an unknown male who was wearing a dark trench coat and lace-up boots.

The attacker is thought to be of medium build, 6'0, with long hair down to his chin and stubble.

A second girl was sexually assaulted in Portadown early on Saturday morning.

It is understood the victim, who is also in her late teens, was attacked in the Ballyoran area of the Co Armagh town, close to her home.

Local Sinn Féin Councillor Gemma McKenna condemned the attack.

"This young woman was returning home after a night out when she was subjected to a horrific attack within a relatively short distance of her home.
(Source: UTV News)


The GAA community of Carlow united in grief last week, following the sudden death of county board secretary Tommy O’Neill. 

Mr O’Neill, a native of Ballycrogue, Carlow, held the position of county board secretary for a distinguished 25 years. 

Hundreds attended the removal of his remains to St Joseph’s Church, Tinryland on Friday evening and requiem Mass last Saturday. Many leading faces from the GAA, among them past presidents Nickey Brennan and Seán Kelly MEP were also there to pay their respects. Current GAA president Christy Cooney visited the family home to offer his sympathy. 

Many tributes have been paid to Tommy last week, honoring his commitment to the GAA, his efficiency in the role of secretary and his incredible knowledge of all-things GAA. 

(Source: The Carlow Nationalist)


A woman in her 60s was killed when she was hit by a car while walking in Co Cavan.
The accident happened at 7.50pm last night at Coronea, Arva, Co Cavan.

The woman was taken to Cavan General Hospital where she was pronounced dead.
(Source: Irish Independent)


Clare County Council has recommended that Shannon not be privatized and has instead identified a preferred option of the airport being run by local public sector agencies.

The Government has appointed Booz & Co as consultants to identify alternative models of control and operation for Shannon and last Monday, the council agreed a submission to be given to the consultants, which argues against privatizing Shannon or offering a long-term lease without public sector involvement.

In its submission, the council also acknowledges, “the option of retaining the status quo is not a realistic option”.

With regard to privatization, the submission states, “Divesting ownership of the airport and the transfer of the airport and its assets to private, profit-driven operators would be a matter of serious concern for the region. 

“In the event that the airport and property were transferred to the private sector, there would be the danger that asset stripping would occur and that the operation of the airport and the development of the airport land bank would be driven solely on the basis of maximizing short-term profit, rather than ensuring the sustainable development of the airport and land bank as a strategic asset for the region.”
It also states that terms and conditions attached to any disposal of the airport “would be critical”. The submission also states that enforcing any such terms and conditions would be very difficult.
(Source: The Clare Champion)