An Antrim woman, whose baby tragically died following a long illness, has blasted those behind a controversial and “perverted” Facebook page which posts jokes about dead babies.

Paula Woods lost Billie-Jo at the tender age of only eight months after the brave little girl had battled against all the odds when doctors warned her terrified mother that she had “no chance for survival.”

She encountered more than her fair share of heartbreak, suffering numerous miscarriages before Billie-Jo was born at only 27 weeks and weighing less than a bag of sugar on August 11, 2008.
The mother thinks it’s a disgrace such a bullying page be allowed to exist.
[Source: Antrim Guardian]


Police are investigating the circumstances surrounding a drive-by shooting in Newry late on August 11 in which a man was injured.

The shooting occurred around 11:15 p.m. in Drumalane Park when the occupants of a house were sitting in the front room of the property. A single shot was fired through the window and one man sustained minor injuries to his neck and upper arm.
[Source: Examiner Newspaper]


A Tullow family has been “overwhelmed” by the kindness and generosity of people following the heartbreaking discovery that their three-year-old grandson in the United States has developed leukemia.

Little Andrew Dawson, the grandson of Dan and Carmel Dawson from Tullow, was diagnosed with leukemia in mid-July – news which devastated the family, particularly his parents Mark and Tristan. Mark Dawson (42) moved to America 23 years ago and in 2001 married U.S. native Tristan. The couple resides in Palm Beach, Florida, and little Andrew is their only son.

“He’s Mark and Tristan’s only child and it’s precious to have him at all . . . he’s their little piece of gold,” said Carmel. “He’s a very happy, intelligent little boy, who loves his connection with Ireland. He loves getting the parcels in the post with his Ireland jerseys. He has a sliotar and a hurl . . . he just loves everything about Ireland,” she added. “We talk to him every couple of days on Skype.”

Andrew is currently undergoing intensive chemotherapy treatment in Florida, where a team of oncologists, pediatricians and nursing staff are ensuring that he is receiving the very best of medical care.
[Source: Carlow Nationalist]


Over 300,000 visitors, some 1,500 volunteers, close to 300 events, an estimated $49m for the local economy and one massive party . . . the All-Ireland Fleadh Cheoil kicked off in Cavan Town last week. You'd be mad to miss the ceol and the craic!

Apart from the official Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann competitions and Scoil Éigse summer school, there is a huge program of events going on in the Fringe Fleadh, according to County Manager Jack Keyes, not to mention the number of impromptu sessions that will crop up in pubs and on streets all over the town.
 [Source: The Anglo Celt]


The bodies of three men have been recovered from the sea following two incidents in the Republic of Ireland.

Two fishermen's bodies were found on the shoreline near Spanish Point in County Clare following a major search.

In a separate incident, the body of John O'Leary, from Barness in Allihies, was recovered off the coast of County Cork.

He had been on a sailing dinghy with his teenage son when the boat overturned.
[Source: BBC News]


A 40 ft. fin whale was found to be trapped in the harbor in Baltimore last Tuesday morning after coming into the beach on a low tide.

It is feared the whale could die after a vet's examination revealed that she is seriously ill.

Already there are plans to take the whale to the beach by boat and let her die there, from where it will be up to Cork County Council to dispose of the body. With plenty of holidaymakers in the area, the numbers coming to see the whale grew and local traffic increased, creating congestion in the small fishing village.
[Source: Cork Independent]


More than 6,000 people are now signing on in Derry.

The latest government figures released this morning show 8.5 percent of people of working age are now claiming an unemployment related benefit.

The total number of people out of work in Derry currently stands at 6,046.

Unemployment remains higher in Derry than in all of the other council areas in the North and has risen by six percent over the last year.
[Source: Derry Journal]


Well-known GP says former inmates should be kept on high drug levels.

Letterkenny-based doctor James McDaid said some of his patients who have been released from prison are reoffending or are returning to use illegal drugs, after their dosage of prescription drugs has been reduced.

The GP said he is being forced to reduce the dosages to these patients because of HSE guidelines. But some former inmates would be better off remaining on the higher dosages for their own sake and the sake of the community, he said.

Dr. McDaid said he has four patients in such a situation, three male and one female. Three have reoffended after having their dosage reduced and one has begun using heroin again.
[Source: Donegal Democrat]


It’s been just over a year since they had a night like last Sunday, or perhaps suffered a hangover Monday morning like they did 12 months ago.

Holywood Golf Club was again the place to be for friends and family of the Co. Down town’s favorite son Rory McIlroy as many of them turned out to roar him to victory.

The club is littered with television screens following an extensive revamp in recent months — but not surprisingly, no one was asking the bar staff to flick the Olympics closing ceremony on amidst the wall-to-wall coverage of McIlroy’s final round in the U.S. PGA Championship.
[Source: Belfast Telegraph]


A Dublin mother of 17 died after drinking a toxic level of alcohol at a post-wedding day celebration.
Mary Lawrence (67), from Ardla Cottages in Skerries, Co. Dublin, was found dead in bed by her daughter on October 30 last year, a Dublin inquest heard.

Dublin Coroners Court heard her death was brought about by a combination of a toxic level of alcohol in her system and existing heart and lung problems.
[Source: Evening Herald]


Cattle rustlers have left a Roslea farmer devastated after they stole six of his livestock from a field.
Their distraught owner, Lester Downey had been away working and when he returned at around 7 p.m., he made the grim discovery that his cattle were gone.

The haul included two Limousin cows, one Charolais cow, one Hereford cow and two eight-month-old Charolais bull and heifer calves. They are thought to have been taken sometime between 3 a.m. and 4 a.m. on Monday, August 6.
[Source: Fermanagh Herald]


An Garda Síochána (police) has “called time” on its lenient policing of exemptions to opening hours of the city’s late night pubs – Galway’s late bars will have to close at the legal extended time of 1 a.m. from now on, and not 2 a.m. as was widely assumed by the drinking public and practiced by publicans.

Galway Gardaí have confirmed to the Connacht Sentinel that a number of inspections have been carried out in recent weeks on city center pubs to ensure they are complying with licensing laws in relation to opening hours, and in particular late night exemptions.

A spokesperson at Galway Garda Station said that there were no prosecutions pending following the inspections carried out at night in bars and pubs in the city in the past month.
[Source: Galway Bay FM]


The mayors of the four local authorities in Kerry – Tralee, Killarney, Listowel and the county – handed in a letter of protest yesterday to Kerry General Hospital in Tralee, over the cost of parking.

The HSE rejects claims that the charges are excessive, and says they are necessary.
The cost of parking is $15 per day.

In the letter, the four mayors said the charges were unfair on patients and people trying to visit their sick relatives at what was often a time of great stress.
[Source: Irish Times]


Kildare Rose Megan O’Neil is about to jet off to the U.S.A. to pursue a music career.
The 2012 Rose will head stateside in September to pursue a career in Nashville, Tennessee.

egan, from Ballymore Eustace, just completed her final year as a psychology student in UCD from where she graduated with honors. However, music has always been a passion of the 22-year-old who combined teaching piano and singing with her studies.
[Source: Kildare Nationalist]


A Castlecomer woman was the key organizer of Mike Tyson’s opening night celebrations for his Broadway show “Undisputed Truth.”

Anne Coogan is the manager of Hurley’s Irish Pub in Times Square in New York and Tyson held his opening night party there two weeks ago.

The show is attracting considerable attention stateside.
[Source: Kilkenny People]


The Garda (police) investigation into the horrific crash near Tullamore that saw four young men perish is on-going, and a number of witnesses that have come forward with information are currently being interviewed.

Inspector Kieran Keyes revealed that a technical examination of both vehicles has been completed and they are awaiting results.

It is believed the accident occurred as the Honda Civic car, in which the four Portarlington men were traveling, was attempting to overtake.
[Source: Leinster Express]


Homecare provider Bluebird Care has announced the creation of “a minimum of 25 jobs” in Co. Leitrim as part of a package of 510 new jobs announced country-wide earlier last week. Nearby Co. Longford is also set to benefit from the jobs announcement with 15 new jobs expected for the county.

The positions will come on stream over the next six months and will be open to care assistants and support workers nationwide.
[Source: Leitrim Observer]


The Rubberbandits are taking Edinburgh by storm, with the plastic-bag wearing rappers attracting rave reviews for their performances at the Fringe, the world’s largest arts festival.

The Limerick comedy duo, who are in the midst of performing 12 dates at the Gilded Balloon Teviot in Edinburgh as part of the Fringe, have added an extra date at the festival, such is the success of the show, which has attracted strong reviews from leading media outlets.

The BBC have selected the ‘Bandits as one of their “Best of the Fringe” picks, while the Guardian newspaper recently lauded the show, declaring the duo to be “an Irish phenomenon” whose “associations are brilliantly daft and menacing,” awarding the show four stars.
[Source: Limerick Leader]


It’s a long way from Kansas to Longford, but that didn’t stop the local weather system creating a clearly visible, albeit short-lived, tornado.

Bunlahy residents, Robert Browne (30) and his partner Barbara Comiskey, witnessed the incident first-hand as the skies above them formed into a dark cloud.

“I went out in the front garden and I asked Barbara if she wanted to go for a walk. Then I saw the clouds above us darken and a cone shape formed out of them,” said Robert, who retrieved his camera from the house and took some photographs of the funnel cloud.
[Source: Longford Leader]


Giant slugs are invading Dundalk footpaths and causing havoc.

The slugs are causing walkers, joggers and runners grief as they attempt to avoid killing the slimy creatures while out exercising.

Paul Cumiskey, a runner, told the Dundalk Democrat that the slugs are “giant creatures” and there is a “sea” of them.

“I was running on the footpath near the Retail Park and the entrance to Bay Estate during the week and next of all I see all these slugs, they seemed to be coming from the bushes, there was so many of them. These weren’t like normal slugs that I have ever seen before, a lot of them were quite big. I obviously didn’t want to step on them and kill them so I was tip-toeing around them.

Because there was so many of them, it was a sea of slugs, I decided to cross over to the other side of the road. The first thing I noticed was that there was slugs here as well and so many of them. I couldn’t believe my eyes.”
[Source: Dundalk Democrat]


Hollywood golden girl Julia Roberts was continuing her holiday in Mayo last Tuesday, taking her three young children to enjoy the amenities of Westport House and Pirate Adventure Park.

In the company of an unidentified male who appeared to be a minder/driver, the family were spotted by several stunned onlookers enjoying the sunny conditions in the seaside town of Westport.

As exclusively revealed by The Mayo News, the Academy Award-winning actress had been holidaying in the west Mayo area for several days. She kept a low profile during that time. Wearing a baseball cap, dark sunglasses, jeans and a red top, she looked like any other mother out enjoying the day with her young children.
[Source: The Mayo News]


Slane could be the venue for two rock concerts next year, Lord Henry Mountcharles has confirmed.
He indicated that he was looking at the possibility of two concerts in 2013, as two major acts have come up. "The likelihood is that one will be in June and one in August," he said last week.

He pointed out that there was a precedent for two shows in one year, going back to 2001 when U2 played two concerts, one week apart. "Next year would be a completely different scenario as there would be two separate acts," he added.
[Source: Meath Chronicle]


A toddler involved in a horrific collision as his family returned from holiday is recovering in hospital in Glasgow.

The one-year-old boy — who was transferred to Yorkhill Children’s Hospital earl with two of his siblings — sustained fractures to his thigh bone in the three-vehicle smash, which happened at 3am last Friday.

The boy’s parents, Brigid (29) and Simon McDonagh (29), from Ashdene Heights in Dungannon, were also treated for injuries after the crash, which happened in Drumfries and Galloway, where they had been holidaying.

Police have said the couple’s camper van — driven by Mrs McDonagh — was involved in a collision with a van, which was being driven by a Polish man who lives in Northern Ireland.

The 42-year-old van driver, who sustained extensive fractures to his lower body, was stable in Drumfries and Galloway Royal Infirmary.

A 57-year-old man from Co Monaghan driving a lorry which was also involved in the early morning smash escaped injury.
[Source: Belfast Telegraph]


Bouquets of flowers, car parts, and a blackened road verge mark the spot on the Tullamore to Geashill road where August 10 four young Portarlington men lost their lives in a horrific head-on collision.

Poignant messages written on those bouquets show the grief and pain of their families and friends.

Among them is one from the Doyle brothers’ mother Mary, who had to say goodbye to her three “beautiful babies” in a triple funeral.
[Source: Offaly Express]


A man whose extradition to the Czech Republic is being sought over his failure to complete a prison sentence there for crimes including extortion and assault has been remanded in custody following his arrest in Co. Roscommon.

In 2010, Arnost Herman (47) was sentenced to six years in jail by a Czech court. The Czech authorities said he had only served part of that sentence.

Last Tuesday at the High Court in Dublin, Det. Sgt. Jim Kirwan told the court he arrested Mr. Herman at an address at Frenchpark, Co. Roscommon, the previous day.
[Source: Irish Times]


About a dozen people have become ill with suspected food poisoning in recent weeks after gathering mussels and other shellfish from the shoreline in parts of the west and southwest coast.

The Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI) warned locals and holidaymakers visiting these areas of dangers of gathering and consuming wild shellfish growing on the seashore.

It said there had been over 10 reports of illness in Galway, Mayo and Sligo in the past number of weeks. It suspects the reports are linked to harmful algal blooms occurring naturally along these parts of the coast.
[Source: Irish Times]


Flooded and cracked roads, overflowing rivers and burst pipes had wreaked havoc across Tipperary last week, with householders left stranded or having to take long detours to work to avoid potholes opened up by the unseasonal poor weather.

Heavy rain and thunder and lightning over last weekend caused flash flooding in rural areas, and waterlogged many county roads and boithríns. The M8 Motorway near Cashel was closed for a time to one lane of traffic early August 13 due to flooding.
[Source: Tipperary Star]


The "entrepreneurial spirit" of its people and their "get on with it" attitude has helped gift Dungannon with the impressive accolade of being the top place in the U.K. to do business.

These were the words of Dungannon Enterprise Centre Chief Executive Brian McCauley after hearing that the town had outdone all other regions in the U.K. in terms of success in doing business.

According to analysis of Companies House business data stretching over more than two decades, Dungannon has come out on top for having seen more businesses created rather than closed down in the last 24 years.
[Source: Tyrone Courier]


Residents and members of the business community were up in arms as the deadline loomed for submissions on proposals for a Waste Transfer Facility on the old Kilmeaden Road.

Oxigen Environmental, which has already been turned down for a similar facility on the city’s North Wharf, submitted an application, in mid-July, for a change of use at the Waterford/Ross mart premises.

They are also seeking a waste management license from the City Council.
[Source: Waterford News & Star]


Thousands thronged the streets of Mullingar and Cusack Park last Monday evening to welcome home Westmeath two Olympians, John Joe Nevin and Joseph Murphy.

Star quality oozed from the open-top Dublin sightseeing bus, which didn't look out of place in a more modest urban setting like Mullingar. The arrival was reminiscent of that of Jack and the lads in Dublin after Italia '90, only with Mullingar Town Band leading the way.

Down they came off the bus, and in the ensuing media scrum, John Joe's silver medal (which, he told the crowd, he has kept under his pillow since Saturday night) underlined the glamour of the occasion. Niall Horan's arrival helped, of course.
[Source: Westmeath Independent]


As far as titles go they don’t come any bigger than “world champions” and that’s exactly what the New Ross & District Pipe Band can now proudly claim to be.

The band emerged victorious at the World Pipe Band Championships in Glasgow Green; in addition to securing the Intermediate world title, they also secured the overall title in the core drumming section.

The band’s best result in the world championships prior was sixth overall and that was recorded 16 years ago.
[Source: Wexford Echo]


The father of a 10-year-old boy who was trapped under a sand dune has successfully tracked down his son's rescuers to thank them for saving his life.

Calum Fenton from Killiney in Dublin became trapped under an eight-foot dune at Brittas Bay in Co. Wicklow on August 10 after it collapsed on top of him.

The schoolboy – who had been digging on the sand with his brother Barry (8) and five other children –  lay underneath the sand for up to 12 minutes before his rescuers, four Polish men, managed to reach him and avert a tragedy.
[Source: Irish Independent]

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