Ian Paisley’s abrupt resignation as First Minister came amid secret DUP plotting to ease him out of office, a controversial new book claimed last week. The Fall of the House of Paisley by Belfast Telegraph journalist David Gordon argues moves to unseat the veteran political firebrand were more subtle than a coup and the party managed to avoid a public bust-up.

(Source: The Belfast Telegraph)


A teenager ran screaming from Carlow Cineplex after he claimed a ghost appeared in the seat next to him. The lad had been sitting with two friends in screen three, when the mysterious figure of an old man wearing a hat suddenly materialized beside him. The terrified teen was met by Derek Delaney from The Swan, who had just left the new Michael Jackson film at around 11pm. The youth, who Derek described as “absolutely terrified”, was standing in the foyer of the cinema looking - as Derek described it - “completely shook”.

(Source: The Carlow Nationalist)


Thirteen volunteers from Cavan will among the hundreds that will be devoting their services to the Niall Mellon Township Trust building blitz from November 6 to 13 in South Africa.

An estimated 1,000 volunteers from all parts of the country will be aiming to complete 100 new houses for some of South Africa's poorest families in the township of Wallacedene, Cape Town. A new school hall and communal garden will also be built during the blitz.

(Source: The Anglo Celt)


A call for a new type of leadership was made by priest and social commentator Harry Bohan at the Céifin conference, which opened in Clare last week. He said the question of leadership was one of the most critical facing society at this time of great upheaval. Fr Bohan said there was a need to move away from a command type of leadership to a more participative model, underpinned by honesty and integrity. “The recovery that’s needed cannot be just a repetition of the past . . . renewed community has to be at the centre of our recovery. In many ways the recovery has to start from the ground and grow.” This would require people to take responsibility. “Going along with the prevailing culture sometimes can exonerate people from taking responsibility.”

(Source: The Irish Times)


Grants of up to €150,000 are now available through the North Cork Enterprise Board for exceptional local companies that will bring vital jobs to the region. The new Chief Executive of the board, Michael Hanley, said last week that the recession has re-invigorated North Cork's entrepreneurial spirit — at a recent Enterprise Board open clinic held in Mallow, eight very exciting projects were identified in just one day.

(Source: The Corkman)


Derry City's future was thrown in further doubt last week when it emerged that the FAI is now "very concerned" about a meeting they had with the club on Wednesday night last, with chief executive John Delaney saying it could have "quite severe" ramifications. News of the FAI's comments sparked speculation that Derry City's future in the top flight could be in jeopardy, even if the club's board is able to take action on the grave financial crisis it faces. It's thought that the concerns revolve around players' contracts at Derry City. If the FAI is not satisfied with the information forthcoming from the club, City could face automatic relegation to the League of Ireland First Division.

(Source: The Derry Journal)


A senior Garda officer has spoken of the force's concern at the worrying increase of drug use and, in particular, heroin in Donegal. Garda Inspector Pat O'Donnell says drug use is widespread across the county and every weekend gardai here are making seizures of drugs, money and varieties of drugs paraphernalia and equipment. He also admitted Donegal is "wide open" to people who want to bring drugs here and said the majority of drugs are being brought from Dublin, Belfast and Galway.

(Source: Donegal Democrat)


A total of £42,000 worth of drugs were seized in Warrenpoint in just six months, the PSNI has revealed. The figures were disclosed by Constable Stan Lutton and Sergeant Kenny Millen at a Forum for Discussion hosted by Newry and Mourne District Policing Partnership in Warrenpoint Town Hall on Tuesday last. The officers also revealed that in the six months from April to September, there were nine planned searches in the Warrenpoint area, resulting in seven people being charged with intent to supply drugs.

(Source: The Down Democrat)


The socially aware clothing company founded by Bono and his wife Ali Hewson has lost millions of dollars and is struggling in the economic downturn, new figures have revealed. The future of Edun Apparel, a fashion label aimed at helping some of the most vulnerable communities on earth in sub-Saharan Africa, remains unclear after accounts filed last week show falling sales. The losses will come as no surprise to many fashion experts as the sector has taken a massive hit due to the credit crunch. However, due to the high profile of Bono and his wife, many thought Edun would not suffer as much as other companies. Accounts filed for the business reveal that the fashion company retained losses of $19m (€12.8m) in 2008, a 23pc increase from the previous year's $14.5 (€9.7m).

(Source: The Evening Herald)


An Enniskillen councilor is calling for the headquarters of the new amalgamated Fermanagh and Omagh 'super council' to be based in the county town. Frank Britton, SDLP made the plea at last Monday night's meeting of Fermanagh District Council. He told councilors Enniskillen was the right location for the headquarters for a number of reasons: "Firstly, we have the largest population in the new council, we have the largest land area; and we will raise the largest level of rates in the new council area," he explained.

(Source: The Fermanagh Herald)


Ninety new jobs are to be created in Galway with the announcement that technology giant Hewlett Packard is to create 50 new jobs in the city, while online retailer is to take on 40 employees in their soon to be created European headquarters. The 50 new jobs in HP come as part of a €11 million expansion project in the region, involving the establishment of a center of expertise for cloud computing services.

(Source: Galway Independent)



Parents of a young north Kerry woman who died in a crash in 2006 made a special appeal to the EU in Brussels last week to compel the Irish State to implement its road laws in full. The case, which was heard by the EU Petitions Committee on Wednesday morning last is being brought by Kay and Richard Keane from Ballylongford with two other families from the West of Ireland, each bereaved by road deaths they say might not have happened had adequate road signage and surfacing been in place. Kay and Richard lost beloved daughter Eileen (18) and her boyfriend Trevor Chute (22) on April 22 of 2006. The couple died when they exited a byroad outside Ballyduff and collided with an oncoming bus on the night. Mr. and Mrs. Keane believe they would have survived had a 'stop' been in place alerting them to the junction with the main road.

(Source: The Kerryman)


The announcement of the green light for a community school in Kildare town has received an enthusiastic welcome in the town. The Minister for Education Deputy Batt O’Keefe announced the go-ahead for the construction of the new secondary school, which will cater 1,000 students. Building work on the new secondary school will begin next spring and it is hoped that the new school will be open in time for the 2011 school year. The Kildare Town Community School will be created from the amalgamation of the town’s existing St Joseph’s Academy, Presentation Secondary School and the vocational school. The new school will be built under the public private partnership model by Macquarie Partnerships for Ireland (MPFI). MPFI will be responsible for designing, building, financing and maintaining the new school.

(Source: The Kildare Nationalist)


The mother of a six-year-old girl who last week received a €4.5 million payout from St Luke's Hospital, Kilkenny settled her own claim against the hospital. After three years of denying liability for 'devastating injuries' that a baby sustained at birth, St Luke's Hospital has admitted it 'mismanaged' the birth and agreed to pay the child €4.5million. Keri Brett, 6, of Fethard, Co. Tipperary, sued the Health Service Executive (HSE) through her mother, Clodagh Brett when she was born with cerebral palsy and severe mental and physical disabilities after a difficult labor at St Luke's in October 2003.

 (Source: The Kilkenny People)


The HSE confirmed last week that Shaen Hospital, which is earmarked for closure, will not be used to house asylum seekers in the future.
 Portlaoise town councilor Tom Jacob requested information from the HSE regarding the use of the hospital after it closes its doors to its elderly patients, “in the near future.”

 “There were strong rumors in the locality,” he said, “that the hospital was going to be used to accommodate asylum seekers after it closes its doors on its elderly patients. These rumors were based on the fact that the HSE had sunk a fortune into installing a new kitchen in the hospital only a few years ago.


(Source: The Laois Nationalist)



Manorhamilton man, Prin Duignan, has been named as the 2010 Leitrim Guardian Person of the Year. An acclaimed historian, author and publisher, Prin is a well-known supporter of local arts and has proven a vital contributor to the development of amateur drama, particularly focusing on performances in Irish. Prin has also played a central role in the education of the young people of the area, having worked as a teacher for many years.

(Source: The Leitrim Observer)


Charles Dickens was a fan, and now the 19th century Limerick author John Francis O'Donnell could acquire many new admirers of his work at the University of Limerick. The university's Glucksman Library has received a donation of a rare book by the writer and editor who died in 1874. The book, The Emerald Wreath, was published in 1864, and the copy acquired by UL is believed to be one of the few in existence in Ireland.

(Source: The Limerick Leader)


The promise of a new state of the art library in Ballymahon has been given the seal of approval by those who helped bring the project to fruition. Last week, Minister for Housing Michael Finneran TD had finally brought a near ten year wait to a successful conclusion when announcing that grant aid of around €900,000 would be made available for the venture over the coming months.

(Source: The Longford Leader)


A multi storey medical facility, incorporating over 150 bedrooms, is being planned for a site within the grounds of the Lourdes Hospital by a private consortium. And if permission is granted those behind the state-of-the-art project will finance its construction and then lease the building back to the HSE. The planned site is towards the north-west of the hospital campus and would be a five to six storey development, including the 150 plus en suite bedrooms with ancillary services and uses. Part of the facility would be on privately owned lands and also on hospital property. The move would be seen as a massive boost to secure long-term regional services in Drogheda and add considerably to the local workforce. That move would put the proposal to open a regional hospital on a site in Navan very much in doubt.

(Source: The Drogheda Independent)


A U.S. helicopter pilot who died in a crash in Afghanistan as his aircraft was taking off was son of Mr. Jackie Lyons, formerly of Quay Road, Westport. Chief Warrant Officer Niall Lyons (40), whose mother Nuala comes from Dublin, was one of 10 Americans who died when low visibility caused the helicopter to crash, the US Army said on Wednesday last. The helicopter crashed about 3.30am the previous Monday and the US Army denied claims that it had been brought down by hostile fire from Taliban militants on the ground. The helicopter crashed when it lifted off after a successful operation to disrupt arms smuggling and narcotics trafficking in the Qadis district, the Army said. The crash in Badghis province killed seven US service members and three US civilians.

(Source: Mayo News)


Former Taoiseach (Prime Minister), John Bruton, who returned home to Dunboyne last weekend, has thrown his hat into the ring for the post of President of the European Council. The Dunboyne native and former Meath TD, who has been the EU's ambassador to Washington over the past five years, has written to the ambassadors of all 27 EU countries to the United States to announce his interest. MEP, Mairead McGuinness said Mr. Bruton was the ideal candidate and had a lot of support with the European People's Party, the grouping Fine Gael belongs to in the European Parliament.

(Source: The Meath Chronicle)


Monaghan man in his 20s failed to offer any explanation as to why he had certain explosive materials in his presence when he was arrested during an armed raid on a Dublin apartment, the Special Criminal Court heard last Thursday. Evidence was being heard in the trial of three men accused of unlawfully having explosive material in their possession at an apartment in Clondalkin, Dublin, on September 9th, 2008.

(Source: The Irish Times)


Offaly men make better drivers than Offaly women. Well they do at least when it comes to passing their driving test as males have a considerably higher success rate than their female counterparts. That’s according to official figures released last week by the Central Statistics Office which show that of the 4797 men who sat their driving test between the Tullamore and Birr centers in 2008, 55% passed. A total of 5,596 women took their driving test in the county in 2008 with 51% passing.

(Source: The Offaly Express)


A Boyle woman who believes she saw the sun changing color at Knock the weekend before last has vowed not to return for the next predicted apparition as she was “terrified” by the “chaos and mayhem” of the crowds. Having filmed an image of what many believe to be the Blessed Virgin on video in Knock on October 11th, Breege Queenan from Knockarush returned to Knock last Saturday following Dublin clairvoyant Joe Coleman’s prediction that Our Lady would appear at 3 p.m.

(Source: The Roscommon Herald)



Plans for a major healthcare facility on a 16-acre site at Carraroe are expected to be lodged with Sligo County Council before the end of this year. The new private hospital will provide first-class medical treatment in areas of high demand such as oncology, day surgery, imaging, state of the art diagnostic equipment and urgent care. The proposed facility received a major boost on Monday when members of Sligo County Council voted by 16 to 4 in favor of the project, with three abstentions, during a special council meeting to consider the Draft Sligo and Environs Development Plan 2010-2016.

(Source: The Sligo Champion)


A call by Thurles Town Councilor Jim Ryan to have elected members of the local authority attending conferences away from Thurles sharing cars in a bid to cut down on costs sparked an angry exchange of words and was rubbished and labeled "unhelpful" recently. Councilor Ryan's remarks, made at the October monthly meeting of Thurles Town Council resulted in sulphuric exchanges between a number of members, with Cllr John Kennedy taking exception to the proposition as the temperature rose quite considerably  in the council chamber.

(Source: The Tipperary Star)


Almost a hundred supporters, including priests, civil rights campaigners, and family members have leapt to the defense of a former Coalisland businessman, and helped save him from a lengthy stay in a US jail. Two weeks ago, in Philadelphia, a U.S. judge sentenced Sean O'Neill, who came to the US in the early 1980s, to 18 months in prison after he was found guilty of tax, immigration and firearm charges. Mr. O'Neill, who built a construction business that made him a millionaire, originally faced up to 146 years in jail.

(Source: The Tyrone Times)


One of Ireland’s longest running family own businesses, Flahavan's have announced details of a €1.6m investment in its mill in Kilmacthomas, Co. Waterford. The new installation is capable of drying grain quicker and is more energy efficient. To date, €500,000 has been invested with the installation of a dryer and associated grain-handling equipment. “This is one of the largest strategic investment plans that we have undertaken at the mill and secures future employment,” Company chairman John Flahavan said. A further €1.1m investment is to be completed during the next month in new storage units at the mill, which can store up to 4,000 tons and are being installed specifically for organic oats.

(Source: Waterford News & Star)


One of Westmeath's most important historical sites has made a shortlist of potential nominees for UNESCO's World Heritage List. The Hill of Uisneach - considered the mythological "navel" or centre of Ireland, located near Loughnavalley, Mullingar - has been bundled as part the Royal Sites of Ireland, one of seven features of Irish heritage to make a "tentative list" drawn up by the Department of the Environment, Heritage and Local Government. The list has been compiled on the basis of the work of an Expert Advisory Group, established by Minister John Gormley, and sets out for each property a description, justification of outstanding universal value, UNESCO Operational Guidelines criteria met, statements of authenticity and integrity, and a comparison with other similar properties.

 (Source: The Westmeath Examiner)


Wexford man Jim Breen will have his case heard in the European Court of Human Rights, as he seeks to have court decisions confirming the HSE as sole owners of two acres of land at Grogan's Road overturned. Mr. Breen, from Devereux Villas, said he has received word from the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg that they will hear his case. The Wexford man, whose well-known family have kept horses for generations, claims that he has grazing rights to the land adjoining the HSE clinic at Grogan's Road, in an area known locally as Harvey's Field.

(Source: The Wexford People)


Ten anti-social behavior warnings have been issued in the Wicklow garda (police) division so far this year, a drop of 50 per cent on last year's figures. At Monday last's meeting of the County Wicklow Joint Policing Committee, Chief Superintendant Tom Conway said that four warnings have been issued in Bray, three in Wicklow and three in Baltinglass so far this year. Last year eleven were issued in Bray, eight in Wicklow and one in Baltinglass.

(Source: The Wicklow People)