Weekly news from around the 32 counties of Ireland



Ambitious plans for a new £180 million housing development on the hills above Belfast were unveiled last Friday. Work to build more than 1,000 homes on the 96 acre Millmount site in Dundonald is set to begin by the end of this month. Developers Lagan Homes will create around 150 jobs in the construction phase. The first 150 properties are due to be completed by next summer. The planning application is at an advanced stage and is expected to be rubber-stamped by Castlereagh council next week. Stormont First Minister and East Belfast MP Peter Robinson said the project would provide a much needed economic lift.

(Source: The Belfast Telegraph)        



Forkhill was plunged into mourning at the weekend with the sad passing of the village’s oldest and one of its most esteemed citizens. Popular and respected businessman, John Toner, from Main Street, died peacefully in Daisy Hill Hospital early on Sunday morning last. He was 85. Having suffered failing health for the past two years, his passing leaves a void in this small, close-knit community where he was held in the highest esteem.

(Source: The Examiner)



A Carlow hostel has allegedly been housing a convicted pedophile since his release from the Midlands Prison earlier last month. It is also being alleged that the man has yet to register on the sex offenders list at Carlow Garda Station, despite being released from prison three weeks ago.

 He is said to be staying at a hostel located near to two schools, one a primary school and the other a secondary school.

 A senior garda (policeman) has said that there are “quite a number of convicted sex offenders living the county” since their release from prison.
. A concerned local resident said he found it disturbing that a convicted child abuser was now residing close to two schools.

 “It’s like dangling a carrot in front of him,” he added.

(Source: The Carlow Nationalist)



Gardaí from Granard along with members of the Longford/Roscommon Divisional Drugs Unit seized cannabis with a street value of about €30,000 when they searched an area on the outskirts of the North Longford town on Monday evening last. Following a search of a house in the area, the Gardai proceeded to comb a nearby woodland and in a secluded, sheltered area they found 130 cannabis plants. According to the gardaí, 80 of the plants were still growing while the other 50 were described as being ready for use. No arrests have so far been made but gardaí say their investigations are part of a wider campaign against drugs, DVD piracy and counterfeit cigarettes in the area.

(Source: The Anglo Celt)



A proposed €60 million retail park for Shannon that was expected to create 600 jobs is no longer viable, according to one of the planning applicants after Clare County Council refused permission for one element of the scheme. The council last Thursday gave the go-ahead to Greenband Investments and Seán Halpin to build four retail warehouse units, a discount store, a motor showroom, a business centre and a medical centre at Smithstown, Shannon. However, it refused permission for the “neighborhood center” element of the development, saying it would have an adverse impact on the vitality and viability of Shannon town.

(Source: The Irish Times)



IRD Duhallow should consider using some of its €10m EU funding to help out cash-strapped county council projects, according to at least one local councilor. The county council is "starved" of money and, meanwhile, IRD Duhallow has bag loads of it, was the sentiment of Millstreet based county councilor last week. "IRD Duhallow has lots of money," Cllr Noel Buckley suggested. "They really have lots of money and the council has no money. It does not seem to be very fair to me.”

(Source: The Corkman)



The priest at the funeral of a Strabane Republican who died in police custody at Strand Road PSNI Station has said that "nothing less than a full disclosure" of the facts surrounding his death is required. Fr Declan Boland was addressing mourners during the Requiem Mass for John Brady at the Church of the Immaculate Conception in Strabane last Thursday. Mr. Brady's body was found in a consultation room at the police station after he was arrested in connection with an alleged assault the previous evening. His family says they don't accept reports that he took his own life.

(Source: The Derry Journal)



More than 150 sheep died when a container fell off a lorry on the N15 at Cashelard in the early hours of Tuesday morning last. The incident occurred around 2am on the southbound carriage and did not involve any other vehicles. It is understood that the driver was not injured. Gardaí and fire services from Bundoran and Ballyshannon attended the scene, where they were assisted by a number of local men. Witnesses said that, while more than 200 sheep were unharmed, 155 sheep died from suffocation or injury. "It was a terrible scene, with hundreds of sheep everywhere," one local said.