Antrim is officially the most violent place in the United Kingdom, according to shocking new statistics unveiled last week by the Home Office.

Working in tandem with police forces across the country, the authors of the report set out to draw a vivid picture of criminal trends from coast to coast.

Inner cities wastelands feature prominently on the “hall of shame,” but when it came to violence one quiet corner of the country was punching well above its weight.

Antrim, and more specifically the BT41 4SF postcode, has the grim distinction of being by far the most dangerous place in the U.K. with a staggering 677 violent offenses logged by police from January 2012 to June 2013.
[Source: Antrim Guardian]


The Cross Square Hotel was the venue for a very special occasion on Saturday night, August 10, when it hosted the reunion of one of Crossmaglen’s largest and most well-known families.

All 14 siblings of the Murray family – six of whom traveled from America – were joined by extended family and friends to celebrate the occasion, just the second time in 17 years that they have all been together in their hometown.

From the eldest to the youngest – Jim, Margaret (Finn), Alice (Campbell), John, Eileen (O’Brien), Michael, Kathleen (Murphy), Frank, Gerry, Bessie (Gribben), Joan (Boylan), Mary (McGurk), Claire (Finnegan) and Joe – traveled down memory lane, recalling memorable times spent in their Blayney Road home.
[Source: Examiner Newspaper]


More than 1,000 people turned out on Sunday, August 4, for the ordination of our new bishop.

Parishioners packed into the cathedral in Carlow, as well as the nearby George Bernard Shaw Theatre and Carlow College, where the episcopal ordination was being streamed live.

Very Reverend Denis Nulty, a former parish priest in Saint Mary’s Church in Drogheda, Louth, is now the youngest bishop in the country, following his ordination at the special ceremony. Most Rev. Diarmuid Martin, archbishop of Dublin, celebrated the ordination, assisted by Most Rev. Charles Brown, papal nuncio to Ireland and Most Rev. Michael Smith, bishop of Meath.
[Source: Carlow Nationalist]


A young Cavan footballer has joined a Dublin based team, but will still be eligible to play for his native county.

Alan O'Mara, of Bailieborough Shamrocks, has transferred to Dublin club, St. Oliver Plunketts. The young net-minder's main competition for the blues' number one jersey was Conor Gilsenan, who incidentally was O'Mara's rival goalkeeper at club level.

The move means that O'Mara will not play championship football this summer, as his new Navan Road club has already been knocked out of the Dublin club championship.
[Source: The Anglo Celt]


A Clarecastle mother says she is on the verge of a breakdown after her 13-year-old son was subjected to three suspicious advances from a male “stalker” within the last month.

The boy has described the man as someone in his 20s or 30s, with brown hair, brown eyes, an Irish accent, stubble on his face and “dirty looking.” The man was driving a gold 2003 car with a Dublin registration

The first incident took place on Sunday, July 21, at 10:20 p.m., when the boy was returning home from a friend’s house. The most recent incident was on Sunday, August 11, at 8:30 p.m.

“I am terrified. My worry is this man is ‘stalking’ my son; is he watching him?” the mother of four said.
[Source: Clare Champion]


The end of an era dawned in Cork last week when Crowley’s Music Shop closed its doors for the last time on Saturday, August 10, leading to a wave of sadness from musicians and music lovers in Cork.

The store was 87 years in business and was the most famous music shop in Cork, perhaps because it was the shop that sold Rory Gallagher his famous sunburst Fender Stratocaster.

Owner Sheena Crowley made the decision last Thursday and the shop has gone into liquidation. She blamed the closure on changes in the nature of the business, with many musicians now buying instruments online.
[Source: Cork Independent]


A Derry firm which specializes in 3D visualization technologies is helping to restore a classic movie featuring The Beatles.

Urban 3D, which is based at Artillery Street in Derry City Center, is assisting Apple Corps in the United States to transform “Help!,”  the 1965 movie featuring the Fab Four, into formats for high-definition Blu-ray and iTunes Extra.

Currently employing nine people, Urban 3D has accessed advice and support from Invest N.I. to grow its business, particularly in markets outside Northern Ireland.
[Source: Derry Journal]


The Ballyshannon-based company, Cara Health and Beauty, have announced the creation of 35 new jobs as a result of their expansion announced last Tuesday.

The company has a total of four stores in Donegal, with their corporate headquarters and distribution center based in Ballyshannon.

Last Monday, Ramona Nicholas and her husband, Canice, announced that they will be opening in Galway in September in the premises formerly occupied by H.M.V.

Canice Nicholas told the Donegal Democrat, “This is yet a step further in our strategy to become a national brand and will create a further 35 jobs throughout the group including distribution, retail and pharmaceutical. This will bring the total employment within the group of a total of 150 employees.”
[Source: Donegal Democrat]


Work on the long-awaited extension to Daisy Hill Hospital’s Accident and Emergency Unit came to an abrupt standstill on Wednesday afternoon, August 7, after workers downed tools before walking off the site.

The $2.4 million project is in the latter stages of completion, so the news that all work had ceased completely and that staff were not informed of any imminent stoppages was described by Sinn Fein M.L.A. Mickey Brady as a “worrying development.”

The Southern Trust was unable to shed any light on the matter. Speaking to the Examiner on Friday, August 9, a spokesperson confirmed that work had ceased unexpectedly and that, despite the Trust seeking clarification from the contractors on the matter, no reason had been given as to why work was unceremoniously stopped.
[Source: Examiner Newspaper]


Firefighters rushing to the scene of a blazing car were amazed to find dozens of €50 notes floating in the breeze.

The cash was blowing along the ground near the burning car, and more €50 notes were seen stuck in nearby hedgerows.

The money – believed to be worth more than $26,000 – was stolen just minutes earlier in an armed heist at an A.T.M. in west Dublin.
[Source: Evening Herald]


The Happy Days Enniskillen International Beckett Festival regrets to announce that Winona Ryder has had to withdraw from the festival because of a sudden bereavement.

Festival founder and Artistic Director Sean Doran said: “I heard from Winona last night that she had just lost a dear friend and would not now be able to come to the festival taking place next week in Enniskillen.

“She was very apologetic and saddened at not being able to come as planned as she had been very much looking forward to taking part in the festival. She told me she hopes to come next year instead.   It is of course a great shame that Winona will not be joining us this year and all our thoughts are with her at this very sad time.”
[Source: Fermanagh Herald]


More than $2.3 million is being allocated by Minister for Housing and Planning Jan O' Sullivan for social housing in Galway.

Just over $1.2 million is being provided to the city council to purchase 5 homes.

The county council will receive almost $1.1 million to buy 8 homes for social housing.

The purchases will be completed this year and will address the specific needs of families on waiting lists, as well as mainstream housing.
[Source: Galway Bay FM]


Bewitching, romantic shots by world-famous photographer Annie Leibovitz magically showcase the beauty of the Kerry landscape for Vogue magazine.

Entitled “Wild Irish Rose,” the nine-page fashion shoot features Daria Werbowy, the Polish-born Ukrainian model who lives part of the year in west Cork.

Werbowy teams up with Girls actor Adam Driver for the picture story as they walk in the footsteps of W.B. Yeats and Maud Gonne.
[Source: Irish Examiner]


Two attempted armed robberies, one involving a firearm, the other a knife, are being investigated by Kildare Gardaí (police).

The first of these incidents occurred on Tuesday night, August 6, at 8:35 p.m., when two raiders, one described as “brandishing a firearm,” entered Malone’s Newsagents in Kildare Town.

According to Sergeant Ciarán Bruce of the Kildare Garda district office, the two had their faces covered with scarves or hoodies and they began shouting at the shop assistant to hand over money, but then ran from the premises without anything.

That incident is still under investigation, while Gardaí have arrested a man in connection with a raid that took place at Michael Frawley’s shop on Main Street, Monasterevin, at 6:10 p.m. on Wednesday evening, August 7.
[Source: Kildare Nationalist]


For years, the issue of a skate park for Kilkenny has been plagued by obstacles, inertia, and one disappointment after another.

But now there’s some real hope for the skaters of Kilkenny. A new campaign to finally get a facility built is under way, and it has all the momentum of a runaway freight train.

It began as a project submission by local activist, Mick Greene, to the Arthur Guinness Projects – a bursary program that facilitates innovation, talent and creativity, allowing the public to vote. The winning projects can be awarded a bursary of up to $67,000, as well as advice and mentoring – and Kilkenny’s skate park project has shot to the top of the list.
[Source: Kilkenny People]


Laois-based shopping chain, Shaws, has committed its future to Portlaoise with an investment of some $1.3 million in its new store, which opens on Thursday, September 5.

The investment will also have a substantial employment spin-off, with a doubling of the workforce at the chain’s new store opposite Laois County Council’s headquarters.

Construction and fit out work, carried out by local firms, is in the final stages as the family-run business gets ready to turn a big new chapter in its 149 years of business in Laois.
[Source: Leinster Express]


Annaduff and Bornacoola contested the Connacht Gold Senior Championship eighth-place playoff last Saturday after Drumreilly lost their D.R.A. appeal on Thursday.

Drumreilly had appealed their exclusion from the eighth-place playoff to the D.R.A. on the grounds that they were wrongly placed in a relegation playoff when they had qualified for a quarterfinal playoff, having consideration to the criteria determined under the Leitrim Championship Bye-laws and Regulations 2013 and Rule 6.20 T.O.2013.

However, at last Thursday night’s hearing in Carrick-on-Shannon, the D.R.A. ruled against Drumreilly’s appeal meaning that Annaduff and Bornacoola met to decide who joined the quarterfinals with Drumreilly, now consigned to the Relegation semifinals.
[Source: Leitrim Observer]


“The city is dead and this will bury it,” said Limerick’s Milk Market manager of the resurrected Parkway Valley development that is to include a flagship M&S store. Who’s going to revitalize the city – and crucially when, asks Anne Sheridan

“The horse has bolted,” said Councilor Michael Sheahan.

Despite claims in the aftermath of the Marks & Spencer announcement for Limerick two weeks ago that there are “significant planning obstacles” in the face of building the $200 million Parkway Valley site on the Dublin Road, the reality appears to be to the contrary.
[Source: Limerick Leader]


Spurred on by his love of Longford, John Martin founded the Longford Association in Manchester in the 1980s.

Now, almost one year since John’s passing, his family is picking up where he left off over 20 years ago, rekindling Manchester’s links with Longford.

Walking into the opening of the Manchester Irish festival in March, the first thing John’s daughter, Margaret, saw was a banner that John had made as chairman of the association in the 80s. Deciding to once again set up the association, Margaret sought the advice of the Council of Irish Associations in Manchester, where she found out that the last chairperson, the late Mick Cassidy from Ballinamuck, had kept the association in constitution, making it easier to renew the group.
[Source: Longford Leader]


Blackrock youngster, James Dunne, has realized every young footballer’s dream by securing a move to English Premier League champions, Manchester United.

The 15-year-old Rock Celtic center-back has been courted by the Red Devils since he was 10, and will sign a four-year deal at Old Trafford when he turns 16 in October.

James will begin life in Manchester this week when he will travel to his digs in Sale, which is based just five miles from United’s Carrington training ground. He will then return to Ireland to say his goodbyes before returning to the U.K. to begin his football career on September 1.
[Source: Dundalk Democrat]


Westport looks set to have its tourist office moved to smaller premises, after the Office of Public Works (O.P.W.) requested that Fáilte Ireland surrender its lease on its current property.

The Mayo News understands that moves are now afoot to relocate the operations of Westport Labour Exchange, currently on Prospect Avenue off John’s Row, to the present location of the town’s tourist office on James Street. It is believed that other elements of the department of social welfare operating locally, such as the community welfare office, could also be moving to the building. This would be a consolidation of services, bringing related offices of the Department of Social Protection under one roof.

One potential location being sounded out for the tourist office is the former Permanent T.S.B. Bank building on lower Bridge Street. Other locations have also been mooted.
[Source: The Mayo News]


A County Meath man has been extradited to Australia to face charges over a 2007 car crash in Perth in which two people were killed.

Eamonn Driver (31), from Slane, appeared before Perth Magistrates Court last Thursday, charged with two counts of dangerous driving causing death.

Colm Reilly, from Slane, and Kiara Duncan, from Kentstown, Navan, both aged in their early 20s, died in the crash in the Perth suburb of Bedford on October 31, 2007.

Australian police allege Driver lost control of the car on Halloween night. The small hatchback careened across the median strip, flipped onto its roof and collided with an oncoming car being driven by a 63-year-old woman, who escaped the crash without serious injury.
[Source: Meath Chronicle]


A man (21) died when his vehicle hit a tree in County Monaghan last Monday morning.

The single-vehicle incident occurred on the N54 at Aghnamallagh, Smithborough, at about 9:30 a.m.

The vehicle involved had been traveling from Monaghan Town towards Smithborough at the time.

The driver, the sole occupant, was brought to Cavan General Hospital, where he was later pronounced dead.
[Source: Irish Times]


Gardaí (police) have recovered a firearm and quantity of ammunition during a search operation in County Offaly on August 15.

The searches were carried out by Gardaí from Tullamore investigating criminal activity in the area. A sawn-off shotgun and a quantity of ammunition were recovered when Gardaí searched a graveyard. An examination of the scene is ongoing and no arrests have been made to date.

The investigation is ongoing.
[Source: Offaly Express]


Senior mental health service managers in County Galway have sought an “urgent external review” of a decision by the H.S.E., the Health Service Executive, to abandon use of a recently refurbished $3.7 million unit in Ballinasloe in favor of an older facility in Roscommon.

The H.S.E. has confirmed that the national director of Mental Health Services, Dr. Stephen Mulvany, has received a letter, which will be responded to in “due course.”

The refurbished 22-bed unit at St. Brigid’s Hospital in Ballinasloe was due to have been handed over for use two Fridays ago.
[Source: Irish Times]


A group of children on a sailing course in Sligo Bay were rescued by the Sligo Bay R.N.L.I last Monday afternoon after their boats were caught unexpectedly in a swell.

The children and their instructors were in five small sailing dinghies when the swell caught them.

Two of the boats were capsized but one made it ashore.

The instructors from Sligo Yacht Club called for assistance immediately and were complimented for the actions by rescue personnel.
[Source: RTE News]


Ham radio enthusiasts convened in Loop Head lighthouse in County Clare last week to connect with fellow enthusiasts based at hundreds of lighthouses and lightships around the world.

The Limerick Radio Club, comprising members from Limerick, Clare, Kerry and Tipperary, broadcasted non-stop for 48 hours from the west Clare lighthouse on August 17 and 18 as part of the 16th International Lighthouse/Lightship Weekend.

During the broadcast, visitors to the lighthouse were able to listen into communications with some of the other participating ham radio operators broadcasting from 400 other lighthouses and lightships in 50 countries.
[Source: Tipperary Star]


A Fermanagh and South Tyrone M.L.A. and member of the Stormont Environment Committee has described the increasing number of wind turbines in local countryside as "concerning."

Tom Elliott M.L.A. said he observed the "intensification" of wind turbine development when he saw a map at Omagh Planning Office with dots representing every turbine applied for, approved or refused, adding, "It does make pretty concerning reading and viewing."

Mr. Elliott's comments come amid increasing alarm at the scale of wind turbine development.

In the last five years, the number of planning approvals for wind turbines and wind farms in Dungannon has increased eight-fold. Permission was granted for 41 wind turbines or farms in the year 2012/13 in the Dungannon borough – that's up from five in 2008/09.
[Source: Tyrone Courier]


A bank-appointed receiver is entitled to orders for possession of a corner shop in Waterford City, the president of the High Court has ruled.

Anthony and Anne Elliott, who own and operate the mini-market at Griffith Place, Waterford, had pleaded with the court not to grant possession to receiver John Coulston of R.S.M. Farrell Grant Sparks of either the shop or an apartment they own.

Mr. Elliott said he and his wife would be “left without a livelihood and have no means of income” if they had to hand over the shop and claimed the receivers had acted in an underhand and intimidating manner towards them.

However, High Court President Mr. Justice Nicholas Kearns said while he had “every sympathy” with the Elliotts, he had no choice but to grant the receiver possession of the properties.
[Source: Waterford News & Star]


Gardaí (police) in Mullingar are appealing for witnesses after a robbery at one of the town’s betting shops last Wednesday evening.

Around 8:50 p.m., two men entered the Ladbrokes bookmakers on Dominick Street and appeared to be brandishing handguns.

They held a female staff member and two male customers at gunpoint, yelling at them to lie on the floor, while stealing a sum of money, believed to be in the region of $6,700 from the bookies.
[Source: Westmeath Examiner]


Fire brigade crews from Enniscorthy, Wexford, Wicklow and Kilkenny rushed to a major fire in Castledockerell last Monday afternoon.

The fire started in Springvale and spread to neighboring farms where it set ablaze hundreds of acres of corn stubble.

There were major traffic diversions but the blaze was brought under control after 6 p.m.

It is not known how the fire was started but luckily no-one was injured.
[Source: Wexford Echo]


An 84-year-old local man has bought the renowned Harbour Bar in Bray, County Wicklow – once dubbed as the “Best Bar in the World” by the Lonely Planet Guide.

Joe Duggan, who along with his family owns and runs the Martello Hotel and the Ocean Bar and Restaurant on they Bray seafront, bought the rambling venue for an undisclosed sum, from in-laws Paul and Maureen O’Toole, whose family has owned and run the Harbour Bar since 1932.

Beloved by rock stars and filmmakers, the bar is home to the large head of a moose donated by the actor Peter O’Toole, who drank there on occasion in the company of fellow actors Liam Neeson, Alan Rickman and filmmaker Neil Jordan.
[Source: Irish Times]

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