\"News

News from around the 32 counties of Ireland

News from Ireland - news from around the 32 counties

\"News

News from around the 32 counties of Ireland

Antrim

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)

Armagh

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)

Carlow

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)

Cavan

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

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)

Cork

A second murder investigation has begun in West Cork after the post-mortem of a 43 year old Englishman, taken from the River Bandon last Tuesday, determined that he died in violent circumstances.

In a tumultuous few days in Bandon, the body of John ‘Johnny English’ Forrester was the second to be taken from the river by Gardaí following the earlier discovery of murdered Jonathan Duke (27) around midnight last Sunday night.

Two people, Catherine O’Connor (35) from Bandon and Ciprian Grozavu (37) from Romania were formally charged with the murder of Mr Duke at Bandon Court House only hours after a joint Gardaí and civil defense team found Mr Forrester’s body downstream of Bandon town bridge.

The double murder has shaken the town of Bandon to its core, leading to a protest of around 200 people outside the courthouse last Tuesday night. “People feel that the guards haven’t done enough to stop random acts of violence around the town,” said one local resident who asked not to be named.

“It has been building up to this for a long time now. It's common knowledge around town who the people are committing these acts of violence, but there hasn’t really been anything done about it. The protest is about this non-action by the Gardaí, people don’t feel safe.”

Both Mr Duke and Mr Forrester were residents of Bridge House (also known as O’Callaghan Flats), Bandon, which is also the address of Ms O’Connor and Mr Grozavu.
Source: (Cork Independent)

Derry

A man who gave four teenage girls alcohol, cigarettes and money before engaging in sexual activity with them has been warned he will get a “significant custodial sentence.”

Martin Edward Coyle, of 55 Bridge Street, has pleaded guilty to a total of eighteen sex offences between September 1, 2007, and May 1, 2008. They include unlawful carnal knowledge, indecent assault and gross indecency.

Derry Crown Court heard the girls, who were aged between 14 and 16 at the time, were “voluntary visitors” to the 52 year-old’s home and alcohol and cigarettes were “made available to them”.

Adjourning sentencing until this week, Judge Piers Grant said he wanted some time to reflect on the case, which involved “outrageous offences against vulnerable girls”.

The court was told Coyle kept a large bottle of vodka on an optic and the victims had “free access to it” during their time in his home.

It was also alleged that on occasions Coyle gave them money. However he claims this was for the girls to pay for taxis.

Coyle had sexual intercourse with three of the victims, with one stating it happened up to ten times and another telling police that Coyle engaged in various sex acts with her.

The youngest of the victims, who was just 14 at the time, reported being “touched and groped” by Coyle in the bedroom of his city centre home.
(Source: Derry Journal)

Donegal

A top Co. Council official told members of the Donegal Electoral Area last week that the sewerage system in the resort town of Bundoran was both “overloaded and outdated”

Responding to a question from the Mayor of Bundoran, Cllr. Michael McMahon, Paul Lyons of Donegal Co. Council said that the system was overloaded and outdated and needed constant maintenance to ensure that there was no leakages to sensitive areas.

Mr. Lyons confirmed that there was an alarm system which alerted the people on the ground but he also warned that the pumping station is a cause of concern and is not a sustainable solution.

Cllr. McMahon stressed that they did not want another situation similar to what happened just a few days prior to the European Surfing Championships which was highlighted in the local newspapers.

“The eyes of the world were on us during the European event and I would like to pay tribute to everybody in the council who were on the scene as soon as they were made aware of the burst pipe on the beach.

“Had they not have taken such rapid action the championships could have been in sever danger.

“We will still keep lobbying for the new sewerage system but in the meantime it is important that the council continue with their maintenance work,” he said.
(Source: Donegal Democrat)

Down

Police suspect that a Newry man shot dead in 2005 was murdered over a woman.


The revelation came as 35-year-old Bernard Joseph Higgins of Donagh Grove, Warrenpoint, appeared at the city's Magistrates Court last Wednesday charged with murdering Jonathan Graham as he sat in his car outside his Ardcarne Park home in April 2005.
As well as murder, Higgins is accused of possession of a firearm and ammunition with intent to endanger life.


After connecting him to the charges, an investigating officer outlined the prosecution's case.


The court heard that the killing of Mr Graham was the second of four shootings that took place within minutes of each other in Newry at around 1am on April 21, 2005. 
It was told that Mr Graham was first shot at through the front passenger window of his car before the gunman went round to the driver's side, opened the door, and shot him again. 


The 20-year-old died of his injuries in hospital at 5am.
The police officer said that, at the time, a witness gave a partial registration of the car carrying the gunman and two others, which produced a match to 11 other vehicles in Northern Ireland. 
Police checks revealed that just one of those was in Newry on the night in question and that it had been purchased by Higgins. 


He later admitted in interview to having bought the car but claimed he'd sold it to travellers a week later.

The car has never been re-registered or seen since, the court was told.
The police officer said Mr Graham's murder is believed to have stemmed from a "substantial and very violent feud over a six-month period", adding that "it was to do with girlfriends and ex-girlfriends".


Higgins and two other men - Gerald Haw, 55, and James McEvoy, 33, both with addresses in Newry - were arrested but only McEvoy was charged. The charges were withdrawn a year later.


But the court heard on Wednesday that new evidence, including CCTV footage, has since come to light.
Both McEvoy and Haw were rearrested on October 26 but police were unable to track down Higgins. He remained at large for almost two weeks before handing himself into a police station.

(Source: Newry Democrat)

Dublin

The screams of a woman who died after a house fire were graphically described at an inquest into the tragic deaths of two people from the house.

Margaret Sheehan (42) was dragged from the house in a ball of flame after she was heard screaming "don't leave me, don't leave me, I'm on fire".

She died 20 days later at the burns unit of St James's Hospital in Dublin. Gary Linnane (38) died at the scene of the fire in a house on Dublin's North Circular Road on December 3 last year.

Next-door neighbor Kevin Hammond told how he had been woken by a fire alarm at about 1am and could smell smoke.

He realized it was from the house next door and when he checked, the front door of the house was open and the stairway filled with flames.

A man was standing in the first-floor window, panicking and asking for a ladder.
Mr Hammond coaxed him to jump and tried to break his fall.
 

A passer-by told him there was another person in the hallway of the basement. He could hear her screaming. He crouched low to go below the flames, went into the hallway and grabbed her by the wrists.

The door of the hallway slammed behind him but he got it open and jammed it with his foot and a mobile phone.

With the help of another man he pulled the woman out of the building. They used a fire extinquisher and snow to put out the flames, which had burned off all her clothes.
(Source: The Evening Herald)

Fermanagh

Police believe two armed men who robbed businesses in counties Tyrone, Fermanagh and Newry on Saturday could also be responsible for two attempted robberies on Friday.

Two masked men, one carrying a machete, stole money and cigarettes from a commercial premises in the Dernawilt Road area of Rosslea, Co Fermanagh at around 6.05pm on Saturday.

Less than an hour later, two masked men entered a shop in the Main Street area of Augher, Co Tyrone.

One of the men was armed with a hockey stick. The pair stole cigarettes during the robbery.
 (Source: UTV News)

Galway

The €200 million redevelopment plan for Galway Port has hit a major stumbling block because site investigation works were carried out without a license from the Department of the Environment, the Galway City Tribune can reveal.

A planning application was due to be lodged directly with An Bord Pleanála at the end of September – however, this could now be delayed until at least next July.

And Galway Harbour Company could be forced to carry out the borehole investigations at the Docks again, adding further delays to the scheme.

Harbour Master Captain Brian Sheridan confirmed that Galway Harbour Company has “pulled back the throttle” on the project as it deals with various issues involved, and that the Taoiseach has been appraised of the situation.

The investigation boreholes carried out at the Docks – for the preparation of the Galway Port Master Plan – were done without a foreshore license and may have to be carried out a second time. It’s understood applications for foreshore licenses were made in the past, but this application process was never completed.

Capt Sheridan said talks are ongoing to resolve the issues, but admitted it may be next June or July before the planning application is submitted to An Bord Pleanála – because the project is considered Strategic Infrastructural Development, it circumvents local planning, although an oral hearing can be called.

A spokesperson for the Department of the Environment confirmed to this newspaper that the borehole investigations may have to be repeated.

“An application has been received from Galway Harbour Company for a foreshore license in respect of site investigation works to be carried out at Galway Harbour. The Harbour Company recently carried out a public consultation process in respect of the application.

“Following the usual process of referral of the application to various consultees, and assessment by scientific and technical advisers, the Minister will make a determination on the application in due course,” the spokesperson said.
(Source: GalwayBay Fm)

Kerry

Brother and well known and loved Fr. Brendan Fitzgerald of the Bronx -Dr Pio Fitzgerald, a University of Limerick aeronautical engineering graduate, has won the highest engineering accolade from Boeing, having been named Boeing Commercial Airplanes’ Engineer of the Year, aged just 34.

On 12 November, Fitzgerald attended the Dubai Air Show as one of four nominees for the Innovator of the Year award from Flightglobal.  Previous winners of this award include Richard Branson in 2009 and the aircraft manufacturer Embraer in 2010.

Hailing from Killarney, Co Kerry, Fitzgerald graduated from UL 1999 with a Bachelor of Engineering degree in aeronautical engineering.  As part of his degree, he undertook an eight-month co-operative education placement in 1997 with Boeing Commercial Airplanes, which formed the basis of his interest in his current speciality, flight-control laws. Following graduation from UL, Fitzgerald attained both a master's degree and a doctorate at Cranfield University in the UK.

In the spring of 2010, Boeing encountered a design crisis with the new 747-8F jumbo jet freighter aircraft, when "flutter tests" revealed a vibration in the jumbo freighter's wing.

Fitzgerald and his team made aerospace history when they developed the Outboard Aileron Modal Suppression (OAMS) system that dampened out the flutter on the Boeing 747-8F without necessitating any physical redesign of the aircraft. 

Fitzgerald's breakthrough system required an agreement on a "regulatory special condition" between the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and Boeing.

Fitzgerald's ingenuity secured FAA certification and contributed to the delivery of Boeing's innovative jet in October.

In aerospace circles, his accomplishment has already been compared to the legendary Sutter Twist solution four decades ago, when a similar design crisis faced the original 747 passenger aircraft.
(Source: Silicon Republic)

Kildare

Sledge hammers and crow-bars are being used to force open doors and windows by ruthless housebreakers in the Newbridge area. Along with the sledge-hammers and bars, wire-cutters were among the implements found when gardaí searched a car in Newbridge in the early hours of last Thursday morning.

As the area continues to be hit by break-ins and robberies, the gardaí stopped the car at Morristown at 3.10am on Thursday morning. According to Sergeant Seamus Rothwell, the items, which also included torches, gloves and balaclavas, were well hidden in the car.

“These items were well concealed. It wasn’t just a matter of opening the boot to discover them,” he commented, adding that two men, both from the Dublin area, were arrested for being found in possession of implements related to possible burglary offences.

While local gardaí struggle to combat one of the country’s highest rates of burglary, Sgt Rothwell stressed that householders should make use of all forms of security, ranging from alarms to sensor lights outside the property, time-switch interior lighting and the strongest possible locks.

“Doors are being forced open and if you have strong mortice locks on both back and front doors, this makes it more difficult for would-be burglars,” he said. He added that while the spate of burglaries currently showed no sign of abatingthe gardaí were nevertheless having some success in catching those responsible.

Following a break-in at Scoil Mhuire in Ballymany on Tuesday last 8 November, at 2.24am, the gardaí arrived at the scene to see three young people running away and those involved were subsequently arrested.
(Source: The Kildare Nationalist)

Kilkenny

The first phase of much-needed repair works to the Church of the Assumption, Rosbercon, is expected to be completed by the middle of this month.

These essential repair and renovation works, which are currently taking place under the stewardship of Ormonde Construction Ltd., involve repair works to the roofs and lead flashings, repair works to all stone barges, repairs to the stained glass windows and storm glazing, structural stitching to the nave areas, repairs to cracks in the facades and cleaning of the church facades.

When completed these works will eliminate the ingress of rainwater into the church and will help the church in drying out in advance of the second phase of works starting in early 2012.

The second phase of the works will include localized dry-lining to the inside of the church, full internal redecoration and the upgrade of the lighting and heating system.

In addition to the works in Rosbercon, the electrical systems in Tullogher are also being updated and similar works are soon to be undertaken in Listerlin.

The design and delivery of the project is being coordinated by local architect Brian Dunlop of Brian Dunlop Architects. Local contractors Pierce Handrick and Ciaran McElwee are currently working on the external washing and electrics of the church respectively and it is hoped a significant number of local contractors will also be involved in the second phase of the works.

It is estimated that the total cost of the repair, renovation and redecoration of the three churches will be in the region of €390,000.
(Source: Kilkenny People)

Laois

The Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI) served a record 12 enforcement orders all over the country last month, including one to a Laois business.

The Deadman’s Inn pub in Ballyfin was served with a closure order by the FSAI on 25 October. The closure order was then lifted by the regulator the following day. This is only the second enforcement order taken out on a Laois business this year, after the Lucky Palace Chinese restaurant in Portlaoise was also handed down a closure order in February.

It is rare that a Laois business is given a closure order; only six have been dished out in the county in the past 12 years. Five of these have been to food outlets, while the Deadman’s Inn has become the first public house in the county to be given a closure order.
(Source: Leinster Express)

Leitrim

Gardai are investigating a major burglary of jewellery worth over €10,000 in Mohill last week.

Last Wednesday night, November 9 a dwelling house in Mohill town was broken into. The home was unoccupied at the time and jewellery were the only items targeted.

On the same night a business in Drishogue, Carrick-on-Shannon, Co Roscommon was broken into. A large number of “valuable documents” were taken from the premises.

Gardai do not think there is a connection between the two burglaries.
(Source: Leitrim Observer)

Limerick

Limerick city has received a major boost with confirmation that mor than 200 army personnel are to be transferred to Sarsfield Barracks from Kickham Barracks in Clonmel over the next few months.

The Defence Forces has confirmed that 16 officers, 184 enlisted personnel and six civilian employees will all be transferred to Sarsfield Barracks following the Government decision on Tuesday to close Kickham Barracks and three other army barracks across the country.

All of the closures, which form part of cost-cutting measures, are due to be completed by March 30, 2012.

The Limerick Leader understands that significant investment will be required at Sarsfield Barracks in order to accommodate the additional personnel and the works will commence almost immediately.

While no figures have been officially disclosed, the figure is likely to be in the region of €5 million
Mayor of Limerick, Cllr Jim Long, says the arrival of the Defence Forces personnel from Clonmel will be a major boost for the city.

“We have to welcome the addition of these 200 plus people to Limerick and I would have to welcome any additional investment in Sarsfield Barracks because it is one of the core strategic barracks in the country,” he said.

Cllr Long says he hopes the Defence Forces personnel will be welcomed when they arrive in Limerick early next year.

“Our soldiers are more than an army; they are part of the economy and they spend money in the local economy when they go about their daily lives,” he said.
(Source: Limerick Leader)

Longford

A Moyne woman died at Cavan General Hospital on Thursday following injuries that she sustained in an accident in Arva Wednesday evening. The woman was knocked down by a car while crossing the road close to the Church at Coronea, Arva around 7:50pm Wednesday night. The woman who was in her early 60s was a resident of the Drumhaldry area of Moyne and was married with grown up children.
(Source: Longford Leader)

Louth

Louth are at an advanced stage of solving their stadium woes, with delegates set to be asked to give the green-light to a new 12,000 capacity stadium at next month’s county convention.

Clubs were informed at last Tuesday’s county board meeting that the GAA had given their backing to the proposal which would see Louth GAA link up with Dundalk IT to co-develop the new facility on the college’s grounds.

The cost ground, which would host a seating area of around 4,000, is €6m and under the agreement between the two parties, Dundalk IT would foot half the bill. The other €3m would be shared equally between the Louth county board and Croke Park, meaning the total cost to the Wee County could be just €1.5m.
(Source: Evening Herald)

Mayo

The widow of a young Newport man who tragically lost his life in a traffic accident last Wednesday morning has made an emotional plea, reminding people to look after their loved ones and tell them how important they are every day.

Twenty-five-year-old Brian Keane, originally from Skirdagh outside Newport, lost his life around 7am last Wednesday morning when the van in which he was travelling left the road and overturned near Belcarra. He leaves behind a wife of three months, their two young children, and, tragically, a third not yet born.

Keane was on his way to work in Elvery’s Sports in Castlebar from his home in Weatherfort, Clogher, when the single-vehicle accident occurred. The circumstances of the crash are the subject of an on-going Garda investigation, but contrary to reports in other media, his family have stated that the car did not hit a wall.

In a terrible coincidence, the town of Newport awoke to further shocking news last Sunday morning last: Another resident – Jonathan Faul, also 25 – had lost his life in a single-vehicle crash.

Speaking at her husband’s funeral last Friday, 30-year-old Sarah Keane
(nee Mahon) said that Brian was a wonderful man who only ever wanted to protect, care for and love his family. Brian and Sarah were together for over five years and only married on August 4 last. His daughter Maria will be three in January. His other daughter, Tara, had her first birthday last Wednesday. Heartbreakingly, the couple had only recently announced to close family members that Sarah is pregnant with their third child.
(Source: The Mayo News)

Meath

Gardaí in Meath have recovered a large amount of cash, believed to be thousands of euro, of which a man had been robbed in a hotel car park in the area.

The cash was found when gardaí arrested a Dublin man in his 40s in Gormanston. The robbery with a firearm of a local man in his 20s took place in the car park of the City North hotel on Tuesday.
The man was arrested and questioned and later released without charge.
(Source: Irish Times)

Monaghan

A young man from Monaghan lost his life last Sunday morning when the van he was driving collided with a bridge between Newport and Westport. The victim has been named as 25-year-old Jonathan Faul, who was a native of Inishkeen near Carrickmacross in Co Monaghan, but who had been living in Rossmore, Newport. It is reported he was engaged to be married.

The incident occurred around 1.45am in Kilmeena when the victim’s van, which had been traveling towards Westport from Newport, collided with Knocknaboley Bridge near the local community hall. He was taken to Mayo General Hospital where he died a short time later.
(Source:Mayo News)

Offaly

The reopening of the orthopaedic elective ward at the Midlands Regional hospital, Tullamore was warmly welcomed.

Sinn Fein councilor, Brendan Killeavy, believes the funding was secured from the new Special Delivery Unit, which has replaced the National Treatment Purchase Fund [NTPF] to carry out approximately 100 knee and hip replacement operations at the hospital in Tullamore between now and the end of the year.

“This is very good news for patients and for the hospital, which will see theatres and beds reopen to facilitate these operations. I have been campaigning on this issue for several years, arguing that public monies should be used in public hospitals as much as possible, and not in private hospitals where the cost to the taxpayer is much greater and there is no after care provided for the patient in the private hospitals.”

While welcoming the news, Cllr Killeavy is still requesting a meeting with hospital management to clarification on what level of services are going to be provided to members of the public at the hospital given that the hospital is in a financial deficit so far this year.
(Source: Offaly Express)

Roscommon

Gardaí are investigating the discovery of woman tied up and gagged in a house in Co Roscommon, who they believe had been there for at least a number of days.

Garda sources said the woman, who is in her 50s, was found at a house in Anvil Court at 1am last week.

The investigating team are trying to establish if the incident is linked to the death of a man in a fall from the Cliffs of Moher in recent days.

A man in his 40s entered the water at the Cliffs of Moher before his body was recovered by Doolin coast guard.

As part of their efforts to establish the man’s identity, gardaí went to the house at Anvil Court, where they unexpectedly found the woman.

She had been assaulted and tied up. The injured woman was known to the dead man.

The woman was taken to Portiuncula Hospital, Ballinasloe for treatment. She is still receiving medical care.
(Source: The Roscommon Champion)

Sligo

In another move toward the ultimate closure of the Stiefel skin-products plant in Finisklin Industrial Estate in Sligo, 51 jobs - 20 of them through compulsory redundancies - will be lost between now and the end of February.

According to Stiefel, the company's preference was to ensure that all redundancy rounds were voluntary. Following the approval of 31 voluntary redundancy applications, the company on Friday last announced 20 compulsory redundancies.

More redundancies will be announced in stages until final plant closure in two years time. Stiefel has been in Sligo since 1975 and employed 250 people.

They are to cease operations at the Sligo plant by the end of 2013.
(Source: The Sligo Champion)

Tipperary

A Thurles woman has died following a tragic accident last week in Thurles. Bridie Corbett, from Kennedy Park, died as a result of injuries she sustained in a road traffic accident on Friar Street, between 2.30pm and 3pm on Thursday last week (November 17th).

Ms Corbett (81) was taken to South Tipperary General Hospital with injuries which were described as “serious”. Ms Corbett died in the early hours of Friday (November 18th).

Also on Thursday, at around 1.30pm, an empty carriage became separated from a truck at the bridge in Thurles. The street was closed for several hours while a crane was used to winch the carriage onto the back of another truck, to be towed away. It’s understood an emergency ambulance was stopped from crossing the bridge while the diversions were put in place.
(Source: Tipperary Star)

Tyrone

The Tyrone GAA county board is to examine video footage to try to identify who was involved in a “shocking” brawl involving up to 40 people during a game between Carrickmore and Dromore at Dunmoyle, near Ballygawley, Co Tyrone, last Sunday.

Several people were left bloodied and hurt following violent clashes that erupted among fans to the front of the stand after trouble on the field in which two players from the Carrickmore team were sent off.

Eyewitnesses said the trouble first broke out between a number of players and then spilled over to the crowd, with dozens of spectators getting involved.

A number of rival supporters fought in the stand while other spectators tried to pacify them, and others, including young children, looked on in fear.

Damian Harvey, press officer for the Tyrone GAA board, said the board would examine video footage from the game to identify who was involved in the trouble both on and off the pitch.
Mr Harvey said a “small core” of people was involved.
(Source: Irish Times)

Waterford

A shot fired through the window of grandmother Catherine McGrath’s house at 69 Priory Lawn, Ballybeg, last Sunday night could have had fatal consequences.

Catherine McGrath was at home alone and had just vacated an armchair which was left riddled with pellet marks after a shot was fired through her front downstairs window at 9.45pm.

Speaking to the Waterford News & Star from her home of over 20 years she described the frightening experience.

“It all happened so fast. I was sitting here on my own, my friend was only after going home and I was watching television and next thing there was a big unmerciful bang. I got the fright of my life.
“At first I didn’t know what it was, I went into a complete panic.”

A hole the size of a fist was blasted through her window from what she believed was a shotgun resulting in damage to the walls of her living room and armchair, which are littered with holes and scratches. Catherine luckily wasn’t injured. However, she received a small scratch to her face and arm. She feared that her 16-year-old daughter who normally sits in the bullet riddled chair, or her friend who had just left the house could have been killed if they had been sitting in the line of fire.
“IF THEY had been sitting in that chair they could have been killed.

“When I close my eyes I see the child splattered on the wall, thank God no one was sitting there at the time,” she said.

(Source: Waterford News & Star)

Westmeath

Labour Councillors in Westmeath have decided to stay within the ranks of the party. 


It follows a meeting overnight called in the wake of the announcement of the closure of Columb Barracks on Tuesday. 



It had been expected that up to half of the 8 politicians would withdraw their support -  however following what's being described as a frank and open discussion it's understood no councilor has left the labour party. 



Kilbeggan Councillor Gerard Corcoran says Eamon Gilmore will be invited to speak to public reps on the issue.

Meanwhile, a number of local troops - who've been serving in Lebanon for almost five months - are due home this past weekend.

Among those arriving into Dublin Airport this lunchtime are around 20 soldiers from Columb Barracks in Mullingar.

Half of the troops from the 104th Battalion will remain on peacekeeping duty until this week - to ensure continuity in the mission.



Members of the 105th battallion are being deployed in their place for a 6 month tour of duty.

Sgt Major Noel O'Callaghan - who's returning from duty in Tibnin this week - says the Mullingar soliders based there haven't let the announced closure of Columb Barracks get to them.
(Source: Midlands Radio)

Wexford

The choice of Wexford over Waterford for the location of the newly merged regional Vocational Education Committee HQ was a 'finely balance one', the Minister for Education and Skills Ruairi Quinn told a meeting of Waterford Co. Council, this week.

The Waterford Council members expressed anger and regret at the choice of Wexford as the new headquarters and called on the Minister to give his reasons for not selecting the South East's 'Gateway City' in the reduction of the number of VEC'S from 33 to 16.

In arriving at his decision the Education Minister considered a range of factors including the need to ensure that the new HQ would facilitate staff redeployment to the greatest extent possible within the context of the Croke Park Agreement, said Ronnie Ryan, Private Secretary to the Minister in a letter to Waterford Co. Council.

The Minister took into account the need to operate at ' lowest cost' having regard to the accommodation available in existing locations in Wexford and Waterford, he said.

'In terms of the key criteria of facilitating redeployment and accommodation costs the choice of locations for the HQ was a finely balanced one,' said Mr. Ryan.

'In the circumstances the Minister is satisfied that Wexford is the optimum HQ location for the newly merged VEC and it was felt important to maintain sub-offices in both Waterford and Dungarvan,' he added.
(Source: New Ross Standard)

Wicklow

The mother of a Bray schoolgirl who died after slipping from a train platform in Liverpool will pay tribute to her daughter in the Co Wicklow town, Tuesday.

Loreto student Georgia Varley (16) was killed instantly on October 22 in front of her horrified friends and passengers

Her mum Paula, who has been living here for the past three years, was devastated to travel to England to bury her precious daughter last month.

Georgia had been living with her father for 10 months when the tragedy happened. She had previously lived with her mum all her life, mostly in England, but also for two and half years, in Bray and Cabinteely.

Paula is now back home in Ireland and has been organizing Georgia's month mind Mass which will take place in the Church of the Holy Redeemer.

A procession with orange candles -- Georgia's favorite color -- is expected to be led across town in memory of the youngster, after the ceremony.
(Source: Evening Herald)

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