News from Ireland - news from around the 32 counties


The three cases of theft of petrol involved two of which took place from Downey’s Petrol Station, Portlaoise. The incident unfolded on Tuesday morning, 27 December when a Renault Megane was stolen from the Distillery Court area of Monasterevin.

The 21-year old driver then made his way to Downey’s Garage on the Dublin Road in Portlaoise. CCTV coverage from the garage showed that the car’s driver was the same man, who had driven away previously without paying for petrol.

Liaising with each other gardaí soon discovered the identity of the culprit whom they arrested last Friday morning. 

(Source: Laois Nationalist)


Thousands of people, including former president Mary McAleese and her husband Dr Martin McAleese, made their way to Carrick-on-Shannon late last week for the funeral of Andrew Dolan, who passed away on New Year’s Day, 10 days after he was assaulted while on a night out with friends in Mullingar.

At the funeral last Friday in St Mary’s, the crowd spilled out the doors and down the steps, such was the sheer number of people who came to pay their respects. It was obvious that even in his short life, Andrew touched the lives of so many.

The 20-year-old son of local hotelier, Joe Dolan and his wife, Rosie, Andrew was described by Fr Frank Garvey at Friday morning’s funeral as a gentle soul who never even raised his voice in anger.

Fr Garvey questioned why people no longer felt safe on the streets of our towns and cities and he urged all young people to “treat life as a precious thing” and to “live life within its rules and within its cautions”.

“May you all have the will and determination to ensure that (this) won’t happen again to you or to any of your young friends,” he said in his homily.

Speaking on behalf of the Dolan family Andrew’s devastated aunt, Dr Heather Laird, said that their “much loved Andrew was pronounced dead on New Year’s Day, but the real tragedy happened at 2.48am on the 23rd of December” when he was assaulted.

Despite the unimaginable pain the following days had brought to the family, it was of great comfort to the Dolan’s that they had been able to fulfil Andrew’s wish to be an organ donor, changing the lives of three seriously ill people for the better.

“On his behalf, I would like all of you here today to consider carrying a donor card,” she said.
(Source: Leitrim Observer)


Three cancer operations scheduled for last Wednesday were canceled and rearranged for this week as the HSE deals with what it described as “exceptional demand for inpatient beds” this week.

As it struggled to contain costs last year, the HSE pledged that cancer procedures would be protected from any cuts in elective surgery.

But one breast cancer patient who contacted the Limerick Leader described how she had been notified on Tuesday that an operation to remove a lump - scheduled for the following day - had been cancelled.

“Three [cancer] patients have been deferred until Wednesday, January 11 due to an exceptional demand on inpatient beds for the last 48 hours,” a HSE spokesperson explained.

“Acute hospitals in all parts of the country come under particular pressure at this time of year and this entails special attention to emergency admissions. Where procedures have to be deferred, this is always done in accordance with clinical priorities.”

“Cancer surgery will continue to be treated as a priority by the HSE and, as outlined above, due to the exceptional demand three patients have had to be deferred until next week,” the spokesperson added.
(Source: Limerick Leader)


A little girl was thrown around "like a rag doll" by a Rottweiler in a savage mauling while she sang Christmas carols.

Nine-year-old Lauren Kelly is lucky to be alive.

She suffered horrific neck and arm injuries and was hospitalized after the attack in Longford.

Lauren's mother, Marcella (41), was also injured as she threw herself across her daughter's body to try and protect her from the attacking dog.

Marcella said: "All I could hear was her screaming and being thrown around like a rage doll. We're just so thankful she's alive."

Lauren was with her younger sister and a friend when they came across the dog outside a house in the village of Abbeylara on St Stephen's Day.

The girls had been singing Christmas carols. The dog jumped a fence and attacked the young schoolgirl.

Her six-year-old sister Ciara ran home screaming for their mother to come and help.

"I tried to pull the dog off her by kicking him but he just gripped harder," said Marcella. "The only thing I could do was lie down on top of her to protect her but then it sunk its teeth in my arm."

Shortly afterwards, brothers of the children's friend arrived and managed to control the dog.

Marcella and Lauren were rushed to Mullingar Regional Hospital where Marcella received 12 stitches.