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In The View

Clifden Community Council Elections ...Page 6 Tar Eis na Feile Bride ...Page 9 Connemara Rugby Win ...Page 12 Minister Opens Eagles Nest Facility ...Page 18

A combination of cold weather and chilling economic news from the East has left Connemara wondering when the clouds will lift. Will there be a spring after this winter or will our government and politicians once again leave the West out in the cold?

REGIONAL Croi Cowboy Challenge 25 Card Game The next Croi Cowboy Challenge fundraising event will be a 25 Card game, 9 x 9 in Veldon’s, Letterfrack on Friday February 13th at 7pm sharp. Entry is €20 per player, with prize money of €1,200 and all proceeds will go towards sending Peter Coneys and Declan Ridge to Denver, Colorado to undertake a cowboy challenge as a great fundraiser with a difference for Croi, the heart charity of the West.

Bumper Prize Draw The fundraising draw for the Croi Cowboy Challenge, being undertaken by Peter Coneys and Declan Ridge, took place on Brendan Ridge’s Injury Time programme on Connemara Community Radio on December 19th. Thanks to all who purchased tickets; in fact the draw date had to be moved forward as tickets sold out very quickly. The winning tickets were drawn by Garda Ronan Steede of Letterfrack and the winners were as follows:

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€1,000: Winnie Joyce, Leenane. €500: Mary Staunton, Kylemore. €400: Sean Coyne, National Park. €300: Mairtin O Cathain, Cashel. €200: Bridgie Keaney, Cashel. €100: Patrick Joyce, Cashel, Caroline Joyce, Cashel, Breege Costello, Menlough, Galway, Alannah Robbins and Elizabeth Whelan, Clifden and Niall Dargan of Carlow. Photo: Garda Ronan Steede, Peter Coneys, Brendan Ridge and Declan Ridge at the Connemara Community Radio studio for the Croi Fundraising Raffle Draw.

RNLI News So far 2009 has been very quiet for our crews. Looking back over the past year however shows that it is not always so easy going. In 2008 the crews answered a total of 18 “shouts” as we call them in the RNLI service. The last two of the year were the search for the trawler “Banrion na Dton” which had been reported missing while on passage from Killybegs to Rossaveal, and happily was found 40 miles off Slyne Head, and an incident in Streamstown Bay where a yacht had broken its mooring and the crew assisted the owner in its recovery. 2008 was also a very

Robert King on 087 697 7505 for further details. This year is the 20th anniversary of the local station becoming an all year round lifeboat base, and plans are underway to mark this event. More details will be given later in the year. Donal O Scanaill, Lifeboat Press Officer. Photo: (L-r): Maureen Kelly, Sean Kelly and Jackie O Grady at a lunch to acknowledge Sean’s contribution to local RNLI Fundraising. busy year for those involved in fundraising. Among the many events and activities that took place were the following- Dinner Dance in Inishbofin, 10K Run, and the Connemara Darts Competition. The annual Christmas Hamper draw, organised by Eileen and Oliver Coyne surpassed all expectations, and 70 hampers were raffled throughout Connemara. We extend our thanks to all who organised these and other events during 2008. At a special luncheon held in the Alcock and Brown Hotel after the annual Cake Sale and Christmas Card Sale, Mr Sean Kelly was honoured for his years of service to the fundraising committee of the local RNLI. Sean retired last year and we wish him and his wife Maureen our best regards and thanks. 2009 will see a continuation of the schools programme, where the crew bring along the “Grainne Uaille” and give informative talks on sea and beach safety and other topics to the pupils. This programme proved highly successful and any group or organisation who feels they could benefit from a crew visit is welcome to contact Crewman

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Lidl opens in Clifden Clifden’s first discount supermarket opened to great interest at 8am on the morning of Thursday December 18th. Between 40 and 50 people waited outside and filtered in the door to avail of special offers and discount shopping at the stroke of 8am and a steady stream of curious shoppers continued throughout the morning and afternoon. The fully equipped new store is open from 8am to 9pm from Monday to Saturday and 10:30 to 7pm on Sundays. Photo: The first customers at the opening of the Lidl store in Clifden Maureen and Rose Conroy, with Manager Eamon O Conghaile.

Connemara View Newspaper

Connemara View Newspaper

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REGIONAL Regional Roadworks Oughterard Area Cllr. Thomas Welby has indicated that Galway Co.Co. will be carrying out works on the Barna / Moycullen and the Sliabh Aonaigh / Tullanoon roads in the Oughterard Engineering Area. A sum of € 95,000 is to be spent on both schemes. Cllr Welby is also requesting Galway County Council to carry out additional works on the road leading to Collinamuckfrom Cloonabinna to link in with works undertaken in 2008. Cllr. Welby, Independent Councillor for the Connemara Electoral Area, has also welcomed the funding for works on the Station Road, Rushveala and Maghera roads in Oughterard in the 2009 Regional & Local Roads Grant. He has also welcomed funding for the Tullokyne and Cloonabina roads and this will allow the continuation of works which commenced last year.The total allocation for these three projects is just under € 500,000. Cllr. Welby states “It is important that we maintain the level of funding to improve these roads as they have suffered from lack of funding over a number of years now”.

Glentrasna The County Council will be carrying out works in the immediate future on the Glentrasna road. These works are urgently needed due to the poor condition of the existing road after works on the Group Water Scheme. Cllr Welby has requested that Galway County Council would also look at providing pull-in areas on this road as it is extremely narrow in sections.

Derrylea/N59 The Connemara View has been informed by Cllr. Thomas Welby that the sum of approximately €5 million has been granted to the Derrylea Road outside Clifden for road realignment. Also on the N59, €650,000 has been allocated for the Roscahill stretch of road.

Gaeltacht Éamon Ó Cuív T.D., Minister for Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs, has announced a new Gaeltacht scheme called Scéim Bóithre Pobail (Community Roads Scheme). This new scheme succeeds Scéim na mBóithre Portaigh (Bog Roads Scheme) which has been in operation up until now. The Community Roads Scheme will be limited to roads which are not under

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the charge of County Councils; walking and cycling paths, coastal roads, roads to small piers, cemeteries and bogs in Gaeltacht areas. Údarás na Gaeltachta will run this scheme and works will be carried out under the Rural Social Scheme or the Community Unemployment Scheme. The Irish language will be part of the assessment criteria for the scheme. A maximum amount of €10,000 per kilometre will be payable under the scheme. It is expected that the Údarás will roll out the new scheme in the near future. “It is necessary that public access should be of a safe and satisfactory standard,” the Minister said, and “I am very pleased to be able to establish the Community Roads Scheme which will cater for access in the Gaeltacht.”

Community Funding Three Connemara community organisations have received funding from the Community Development Programme for 2009. John Curran T.D., Minister of State (with special responsibility for Community Affairs and the National Drugs Strategy) at the Department of Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs, announced the funding on January 23rd of almost €21.1 million for 2009 for 179 Community Development Projects and organisations nationwide. The funding is designed to cover the costs of staff and overhead costs for local resource centres in disadvantaged areas countrywide. The beneficiaries in Connemara are: Connemara Community Radio-€126,308, Inishbofin Development Company Ltd-€128,121, and FORUM - North & West Connemara Rural Project Ltd-€197,235.

Social Welfare Claims Process People signing on for Jobseekers Benefit or Jobseekers Allowance in Clifden can expect to have their claim processed in an average of 1.8 weeks which is well below the national average of 2.7 weeks. Unemployment figures are continuing to increase nationally. Clifden has the shortest waiting time in Co. Galway and anyone who is under financial pressure while awaiting a decision on their claim for a Jobseeker’s payment can apply to their local Community Welfare Officer for Supplementary Welfare Allowance which is subject to a means test and qualifying conditions.

Support Your Local Lotto In times of economic hardship, the need to support local community development is more important than ever. The Connemara region has a number of local Lotto competitions that directly aid and fund a huge range of community events and facilities, and the support of community members is crucial to their survival. Many of the draws also take place in local pubs, supporting those businesses while also offering very significant jackpots and prize funds to supporters. The importance of local Lottos is also paramount for sports organisations, with many of them providing the main revenue for their clubs. Some of the Connemara lotto games can currently be played online at You simply search for Lottos in Co. Galway, and details of winning numbers, jackpots, draw dates and more are available, as well as the directions for how to buy a ticket online. It is an good opportunity to include those who would like to support their chosen local Lotto at any time, from any location. All the Connemara lotto groups sell their tickets through local pubs and retail outlets so remember to buy a ticket when buying a newspaper, having a pint or availing of other local services. Retailers should also remember to have the ticket books positioned prominently where they can be accessed easily. Draws generally take place in alternating venues where attendance prizes are also often available. At their annual Christmas bumper Lotto party, Clifden Lotto also introduced an annual ticket, which entitles the holder to choose four numbers to be included in every draw for a year, which would suit those who are unable or forget to buy a weekly ticket. Anyone who wishes to buy one can contact Clifden Lotto Committee members Pat Casey, Dave Beecher or Siobhan King. Below is a list of some of the existing Connemara local Lottos and the days on which the draws take place. Clifden Lotto- Monday; Clifden Rugby Lotto-Sunday; allyconneely- Sunday; Cleggan/Claddaghduff-Tuesday; CLG An Cheathru Rua-Monday; Cumann Peile Cárna/CaiselTuesday; Roundstone-Sunday; Coiste Páirce Chumann Peile ne bPiarsaigh, Rosmuc-Tuesday; Renvyle GAA-Saturday; Oughterard GAA Club- Saturday; Cumann Micheal

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Breathnach, Indreabhan-Tuesday. The loss of these lotto draws would have significant effects on the community projects they sponsor and aid so it is imperative that they are supported on a regular basis. So whether it’s family birthday dates or lucky numbers, remember to support your local Lotto-who knows it might even pay off!

Community School Parents Assoc. A Fundraising Quiz night in aid of Clifden Community School Parents Association will take place in Mannions Bar at 9pm on Thursday February 12th. All are welcome and your support would be greatly appreciated.

Clifden and Connemara Heritage The Clifden and Connemara Heritage Society will hold a meeting on Wednesday 11th February in the Station House Hotel, starting at 8pm. This meeting will feature an illustrated talk by Professor Noel P Wilkins on Alexander Nimmo. The talk titled “Nimmo - The Man and his Mission” will look at the various aspects of this fascinating man, with particular emphasis on his work with the development of Irish fisheries and fishery piers. Noel Wilkins recently retired as Professor of Zoology at the National University of Ireland, Galway. A graduate in Science and Law, he started his scientific career in Scotland, where his laboratory overlooked the great north pier of Smeaton and Telford at Aberdeen. In the University at Galway, overlooking the Slate pier of Nimmo, he continued his career researching and lecturing on fish and shellfish genetics and on fisheries. He has lectured and worked widely in Ireland and Britain, on the Continent, in the Arctic, and in the USA and Japan. He has written almost one hundred scientific papers and his books include studies on the history of aquaculture, oysters and shellfish and on salmon fishing. The Clifden and Connemara Heritage Society has been working for years to bring the stories of our past to life by printing journals and presenting talks on various aspects of life in Connemara. The society welcomes anyone who has an interest in history to attend this talk and join the society.

Air Crash Report The investigation into the air accident at Minna near Connemara Airport in Inverin has found that changes in weather and wind conditions that the pilot was seemingly unaware of contributed to the accident. A landing was attempted downwind and a late go around attempt at low speed and high power setting was unsuccessful, causing the plane to hit a mound, left wing first and then cartwheel. The full report on the air crash is available at aaiu/recentreports/index.asp?lang=ENG&loc=1652

Community School Limbo Continues The current situation at Clifden Community school looks set to continue for the time being, and indeed into the future, as the Government appears to have no intention of honouring its commitment to provide a new school building. A campaign by the School’s Board of Management, staff and parents association has been in action for the last ten years to obtain a larger and better equipped school for the area. Padraic McCormack T.D. raised the matter in the Dail recently and urged the Government to reconsider its decision, outlining the long list of inadequacies that the staff and students face. Already seriously overcrowded, the intake of students is likely to increase in the coming years with the closure of Kylemore Abbey. Mr McCormack referenced an engineer’s report detailing the school’s problems and criticized the current government for their failure to deliver on the issue. FF Junior Minister with responsibility for Children Barry Andrews replied that a new school would not be provided but rather an extension and improvements would take place instead. There was no indication of when any work would start however, so as has been the case for many years now, those hoping for a better facility are left waiting and wondering once again. While the Transition Year Grant which provided a minor €100 per student was also scrapped in budget ’08, Clifden Community School plans to continue the Transition Year programme, but on an optional rather than compulsory basis. A nationwide concern is that families under financial pressure may feel unable to cover any additional costs incurred by extracurricular activities, and so discourage their children from taking the programme which has proven very beneficial to students in their overall academic development since its implementation.

Connemara View Newspaper


Bay Water Quality Report The Galway County Council has completed a report in relation to water sampling carried out in Clifden Bay in the last two years. “The results indicate that the effluent discharge from the public WWTP is significantly affecting the water quality in the inner bay. The water quality in the area of the outer bay that is in close vicinity to the discharge from the inner bay is also affected, although to a lesser extent than the inner bay. There is no evidence of any significant effects on the remainder of the outer bay. The levels of contamination at sampling point 1 (where the Owenglin River flows into the Bay) indicate that there may be other significant sources of contamination in the area, however, it cannot be confirmed from the sampling carried out to date that this point is not affected by the effluent discharge from the public WWTP. If further sampling is required, a new upstream sampling location should be identified, at a point where it can be demonstrated that there is no seawater influence. Further in-depth investigations would be required in order to determine if there are other significant sources of contamination of the bay. This would require considerable resources in terms of funding and staff. At present it would be very difficult to determine the extent of contamination caused by sources other than the treatment plant. As it is proposed to a new WWTP it is considered that it would be more practical to carry out an assessment of the water quality following construction of the new plant. If there is evidence of significant contamination at that stage, further investigations could be carried out to determine the source or sources. Approval has recently been granted by the Department of Environment, Heritage and Local Government to the design review report for stage 1 of the Clifden Sewerage Scheme. Works will include the construction of a new WWTP and are due for completion by June 2010.”

Valentine’s Fundraising Disco A “Back to the 80’s” Fundraising Disco in aid of Clifden Community Playschool will take place at the Func Room on Saturday February 14th. The very best of hits from the eighties will be played from 10pm onwards on what will be a great night of fun and dancing, and all funds raised will go towards Clifden Community Playschool, an invaluable asset to both children and parents in the Clifden area. Tickets are €10 and are available from Committee members Gina Boote, Sharon Heffernan and Paula Bann. For further information or to book tickets please contact Gina Boote on 087 769 9078 or Paula Bann on 087 758 9710.

drama for children, cookery demonstrations and much more will make this a fascinating day out for the whole family. Call in to An Bhean Feasa for more details or phone 095-30671.

Library News Reader of the Year Well done to Reader of the Year 2008 Luke Kelly who received a €25 Book Token for his efforts. (See photo)

New Arrivals New to the Library is a series of educational lectures formatted on audio CD from The Teaching Company. These college level courses cover subjects such as: Art & Music; History; Philosophy & Intellectual History; Math, Science & Economics; Literature & English Language. They are available for borrowing and are invaluable for anyone in 3rd level education.

Library Use and Facilities Last year 2008 Clifden Library lent out just under 20,000 books and over 6,000 of these were borrowed by children. The Library is a valuable resource in the community and in 2009 we hope to encourage more people to use this great facility. We have a diverse range of books to suit everyone from toddler to seniors and if we don’t have what you are looking for in Clifden we can obtain it from any other library within Galway County. The Library also has available for readers, The Irish Times and The Irish Independent daily as well as the Connaught Tribune, The Mayo News; various magazines such as Woman’s Way; Time and Magill. Library members can avail of free Internet access on our three computers; printing and photocopying are also available at 10c per page.

Library Open Hours Mon & Wed 2.30pm-6pm &6.30pm8.30pm. Tues, Thurs & Sat 10.30am- 1pm & 2.30pm- 6pm. Fri 10.30pm- 1pm, 2.30pm-6pm & 6.30pm-8.30pm. Membership for Children and Senior Citizens is free. Adults €5 per yr & €2 per yr for students and jobseekers.

Chamber News The Chamber of Commerce has been busy in January, welcoming in a new officer board and planning our program for 2009. The new Officer Board will continue the great work, set in motion by the previous boards, and are prepared to tackle the challenges in 2009. (See photo) Chamber Board: (L-r): Paul Mannion, Secretary; Brian

Hughes, Vice President; Declan Mannion, President; Joe Lynch, PRO. Missing from picture: Brendan Madden, Treasurer; Stephen Foyle, Asst Treasurer; Gerard King, ex President. Photo courtesy of Michele Hehir. 2009 promises to be a challenging year on all fronts for the west Connemara area, however the chamber believes that there will be opportunities for this area to adapt to the changing economic times. It is likely there will be some international tourist numbers which will be under pressure (UK and US) but to counteract this we do anticipate a growth in indigenous tourism in 2009. As always the chamber will be seeking to maximise the tourism aspect of west Connemara to the benefit of all in the area. We will be organising a series of events throughout 2009 to promote the historic and natural amenities of the area and look forward to having all who are interested come on board to help us promote the business of tourism in this area and to ensure we keep as much money and jobs circulating in the area as possible.

Christmas in Clifden Despite all the doom and gloom this Christmas, Clifden shone literally! The town was highly commended by homecomers and visitors. Many thanks to our hard-working Chamber Christmas Committee and to all the Community Groups that participated in Christmas Lights, Window Displays and a Shop Local Campaign- both Criost Linn and Friends of Fatima will be the recipients of all the money raised during our Shop Local Draw. Special thanks must also go to the Christmas Lights Committee ( Cathal Walsh, Shane O’Grady, Michael King, PJ Heffernan & members of Clifden Fire Brigade) , who were still working well into January taking down the lights as well! It showed that community spirit is alive and well in Clifden and we hope to build on that community spirit going forward into 2009.

Tuck, Shane Joyce and Clifden Library. The weekend will be opened by Minister Eamon O’Cuiv, Minister for Rural and Ghaeltacht Affairs on Fri 27th March at 7pm in Clifden Station House and will round up on Sunday 29th March with a bracing walk along a stretch of the Railway Line with Michael Gibbons. Please book your place in advance with Michele on 087 0520295.Full details on

St Patrick’s Day Parade Our St Patrick’s Day Parade will be held on Tues 17th March at 12noon. Please help us to make this parade one of our best yet. Application forms for the parade will be going out this month and we would encourage all community groups to participate. Please contact Michele for any further details

Clifden 2012 Together with interested parties, the Chamber of Commerce has commenced planning for 2012, when we will celebrate Clifden’s 200th birthday. This will be an important time for Clifden, celebrating the birth of the town, educating present generations and leaving a record for future generations. This will be a community celebration and the Chamber will welcome submissions from all community groups on ideas and proposals. An open meeting will be held on Tues 24th February in the Station House at 8pm. Please contact Michele on 0870520295 or email

Railway Weekend Our Railway Weekend this year will run from the 27th29th, March, 2009 in Clifden Station House. The weekend will feature talks from local experts Michael Gibbons and Shane Joyce, as well as Jim Deegan, Railtours Ireland, Jonathan Beaumont, author of “Rails to Achill” and Barry Carse, one of Ireland’s leading railway photographers. Exhibitors will include Ted Turton, Lorraine

Clifden Health Show A special event will take place in the Alcock & Brown Hotel on 21st March next. Organised by Terri Conroy of An Bhean Feasa, the day will be given over to complementary health practitioners, expert advice from leading suppliers on all aspects of health care, lectures will cover the advantages of organic food for good health, Shamanism and its benefits to good health, and Ronnie Plant, Irish naturopath and author will speak about holistic health and answer your questions. If you like Jan de Vries, you’ll love Ronnie! Yoga workshops,

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New Clifden Community Council An election is being organized to reactivate the Clifden & District Community Council. The nomination of representatives is being sought from the community. The closing date for nominations is Monday, February 16th. Elections will be held on February 25th from 6-8pm at the Clifden Station House Hotel. All citizens of Clifden who are 18 or over are encouraged to become involved. (See details and nomination form below). The Clifden & District Community Council has not been active or held meetings for many years. It had been associated with Muintir Na Tire, the national organisation which assists local community councils, who have advised that to get the council reactivated, an election must be held. There is urgency to this. A substantial, approximating 75% of costs, has been allocated to renovate and upgrade the tennis/ basketball court at the Ball Alley into an all-weather, multipurpose facility. In order to access these funds, the trustees of

the property who were appointed by the Clifden & District Community Council, must be directed by the Council on whether to sign approval of the project on behalf of the community. There is no sitting Council to direct them, therefore, a new Council must be formed in order for them to act. The process is being steered by a group of concerned citizens who named themselves the “Clifden Action Network” which formed over a year ago following a public meeting with the objective of developing an organisation to represent the interests of the community of Clifden and its environs. Citizens can nominate individuals from their district (see public notice below for a detailed breakdown). Nominations should be posted or dropped to: “CDCC Nomination”, c/o James B. Joyce Solicitors, Main Street, Clifden, Co. Galway.

Clifden Tidy Towns Clifden Tidy Towns Group is now into its second official year and the work to date is a massive credit to all those involved. Despite only 7 members strong, our goal of achieving Clifden’s reputation as a Tidy Towns winner in a number of

categories is gathering pace. Our Entry Form this year has been tirelessly worked upon by Sandra and Alan Shattock and it will be seen by the Public shortly. We will have copies on display in our local Library as well as on our bulletin board in Super Valu. Clifden Tidy Towns had its latest meeting for its members on Monday 26th January. The chairman PK Joyce filled in all those present as to how well our work went with the County Council representatives and we talked over a number of these issues. Monica Joyce has the posters nearly completed for our Golden Mile Walk. Dooneen, Beach Road, and Racecourse Road are our designated walks. We will be entering Clifden for the first time ever into the Golden Mile competition as run by the Co.Co. Projects that we would like to finish off this year will be as always our Paddy’s Day Parade entry which will also advertise our Annual Super Sunday Clean Up which we would like to have done, hopefully before Easter. This year the Beach Road cleanup will be incorporated into the same day and as said last year, our aim is to have our national day of cleaning based around our Super Sunday. Tidy Towns is going to make a massive effort to raise funds this year so we can replant a lot of the big concrete planters based around the town with shrubs, flowers etc. We are to approach Clifden Town Lotto for funds and we have approached Super Valu to see if we can book one of their “bag packing” fundraiser days, so we can beautify the town on all our citizens’ behalf. As always, should you wish to become part of our happy little bunch you can contact our Secretary, Mary at or you can contact the Chairman, PK Joyce at We are going to create a “Friends of Clifden Tidy Town” and a “Business Friends of Clifden Tidy Town” whereupon any private citizen or business will be able to donate money towards our group and therefore while maybe not being an active part of the Tidy Towns. Our next meeting will be in the Station House Hotel on Tuesday, February 10th 2009 at 7pm. Best wishes to all and my deepest thanks to all members of Clifden Tidy Towns and its supporters. PK Joyce

Clifden Business Move GPA Solutions, Accounts and Payroll training specialists are moving offices this month. Accredited FETAC providers and specialists in QuickBooks, Sage, TAS and various payroll packages. Moving into Market Street will allow more accessibility to customers. More businesses in the locality can now avail of one to one training in the town centre, or alternatively on site in their own premises. A new convenient service being rolled out is “online training” where training is provided specific to customer needs. For more information see or call 095 22377.

Local guard in Galway Sea Rescue Garda Gerard Dunne, from Emloughmore, Clifden undertook a courageous sea rescue in Salthill on January 8th. He is based at Salthill Garda Station in Galway and was called out when a man was reported to have entered the sea near Whitestrand Road in Lower Salthill at about 10pm. He swam out in freezing conditions and brought the man into rocks about 150 feet from the shoreline. The rescue was then completed by the Galway RNLI Lifeboat Dochas and many tributes have been paid to Gerard for his courage and quick action.

Clifden Local CEO of Cancer Care West Richard Flaherty of Clifden has been appointed as CEO of Cancer Care West, which is a not for profit organisation dedicated to supporting those whose lives have been affected by a cancer diagnosis. Richard has held the post of Secretary Manager at the Connemara Golf Club for the past eight years, and as CEO of Cancer Care West he will oversee many new projects, including a Fundraiser in Clifden in March.

Missing Cat Theo, a small, black & grey (short-haired) tiger striped cat with a very short tail has been missing since January 12th from Tullyvoheen near the Clifden Supply Centre. He is a shy cat, unaccustomed to people. Theo may have sought shelter from the wind in outbuildings or may be injured in the garden. Theo’s owner is elderly and very concerned as the cat requires daily medication. €40 reward is offered for the safe return of this cat. 095-21636 or 086-102-0871.

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Connemara View Newspaper

Connemara View Newspaper

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Public Access Defibrillator

An Cheathru Rua

Rally Against Sewage Plant A public rally is planned in Carraroe next weekend to highlight local concerns about the proposal to locate a sewage treatment plant at a site adjacent to the pier at An Sruthán. Concerned Residents and the Pier Development Committee are holding the rally at the pier next Sunday, 8 February at 2pm in order to ensure that local political representatives get an opportunity to inspect the proposed site, meet with local people and hear their concerns first hand. All members of Galway CoCo are being invited to the rally as are all Galway West TDs, local members of the European Parliament and other public representatives. The rally organisers are urging local people to make every effort to attend the event. They will also welcome support at the rally from anyone further afield who might be concerned about the effect the sewage plant would have on the area or on the future development of the pier. At it’s meeting last week, Galway County Council postponed a decision on the treatment plant proposal, pending representations to the Department of the Environment. A meeting between Department officials and local residents is planned within a fortnight. The residents have asked that Minister John Gormley participate in this meeting. They are concerned that the treatment plant will jeopardize plans to develop the pier as a luxury Marina and a resource for tourists. They are also worried that such a plant would have an adverse impact on those living close to the pier. The bay is already an official mooring location for yachts from all over Ireland and abroad. There are also plans to extend Sruthán Pier as a hub for traditional Galway Hookers and as a centre for the sailing fraternity. Sruthán Pier is also a working pier used by local fishermen. All this could be compromised. The area is also a populated residential area and those living locally are very concerned about the effects the plant might have on their quality of life. Local people maintain that the scenic location will be forever ruined if the Council decides to go ahead with the proposed sewage treatment plant.

Funding for Crib na nÓg Éamon Ó Cuív T.D., Minister for Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs, is pleased to announce that he has sanctioned €50,000 for Crib na nÓg, An Cheathrú Rua, Co. Galway to enable them to develop their activities in 2009. The Minister said that he was delighted to be able to provide this money so that Crib na nÓg can continue with the excellent work they do for young people. Crib na nÓg has a central role in organising events for teenagers in the Ceathrú Rua area and indeed throughout Connemara. As the Minister made the announcement, he said that it is his intention to request that Údarás na Gaeltachta would review how youth events are catered for in the Gaeltacht as well as the expenditure involved. “Crib na nÓg has a very new and refreshing approach which appeals to young people and it is very important that these efforts should be given effective assistance,” Minister Ó Cuív said.

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Ann Early, Ellen Nee, Martina Mullen, Anne Steyaert, John O’Malley and John McDermott from Ballyconneely all attended a First Responder/AED (defibrillator) course, held in the Ballyconneely Community Hall recently. All volunteers were successful in obtaining their CROI First Responder/AED certificate. Instructor Catherine Sheridan from Croi Lifeline Project trained the six in the life saving techniques of CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) and use of the AED (defibrillator). The AED is now in place in the Ballyconneely Community Hall and ready for use. The First Responders in Ballyconneely all have a key to the hall in order to be able to access the AED at all times. What’s a first responder? A First responder is a person in your area who has been trained in CPR (cardiopulmonary resucitation) and the use of an AED (defibrillator). What’s an AED? An AED or Automated External Defibrillator is a heart machine used for victims whose heart has stopped beating, also known as cardiac arrest. Cardiac arrest can be recognized when the victim is collapsed, unresponsive and not breathing. The defibrillator, once applied to the chest, can tell if the victim needs a special treatment to shock the heart back into a normal rhythm. It may restart the heart. The machine tells the operator what to do using voice prompts. In order to make the CPR/AED scheme as effective as possible it is crucial to make everybody in the community aware of its existence. It is pointless to have an AED (defibrilator) in place if there is no general awareness regarding when to call an ambulance, where the AED is located, who the trained responders are and how to access them. The emergency mobile number as well as the names and home numbers of the First Responders of the Ballyconneely area will be available from key locations in Ballyconneely such as the Post Office, the church, Keogh’s pub & supermarket, McWilliams’ shopwindow, the golf club, Mannin Bay Hotel, schools, etc. We strongly advise you to keep the AED/ First Responder phone numbers close to your home phone and keep a copy in your wallet. Or, you could simply cut out the information below and keep it close at hand. What to do if you witness a cardiac arrest. You must call 999 or 112 (if calling from a mobile) for an ambulance or have someone else call. Try to keep calm, it is crucial to tell the emergency services where they have to go and if necessary give them directions. Call 085 101 45 40. This defibrillator emergency number will connect you to the First Responder/AED on call in the Ballyconneely area. Again, try to keep calm and give him/her clear directions if necessary. If the person on call is unable to attend, he or she will contact an alternative responder. Names and alternative numbers of First Responders in the Ballyconneely area in case you do not get through to the above mentioned emergency mobile number: Anne Early, Ballafada, 095 23944 / 086-3136314; Ellen Nee, Foorglass, 095 23007 / 087-9469946; Anne Steyaert, Keerhaunmore, 095 23685 / 087-2468294; Martina Mullen, Ballafada, 095 23759 / 086-3564988; John O’Malley, Ballyconneely, 095 23558 / 087-9442308; John McDermott, Foorglass, 095 23795 / 087-7912389

Start CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) immediately if able, and continue to do so until a First Responder with defibrillator or/and the emergency services arrive.

New Position for Local Chef Stefan Matz of Ballyconneely has been appointed Group Executive Chef and Director of Food at the g hotel and Ashford Castle. Stefan has worked in some of the most prestigious kitchens across the world, including Germany, Switzerland, USA and Ireland, and has received many awards and accolades over the years for his culinary skills, including a star rating in the Michelin guide to Great Britain and Ireland and being named Chef of the Year by Georgina Campbell in 2007. As Group Executive Chef, he will oversee all elements of food at the prestigious hotels.


to build a boathouse in Carna. I am certain that this will be a very worthwhile facility as the provision of such a service is extremely important for the country’s coast,” the Minister said.

Cashel The Christmas season was celebrated in Cashel with the welcome addition this year of Johnny O Loghlen’s Bar being open for the festivities. A number of functions were held there including family get-togethers, birthday parties and weddings, one of which included well known musician John Hogan among the guests. Meanwhile the popular bar Tigh Paddy Festys in Recess closed for the Christmas period with new work and renovations scheduled to take place in the coming months. The popular couple who leased the premises, John Joe and Brid Hopkins

Cod Farming Begins A pioneering cod farming enterprise is underway off the South Connemara coastline. 20,000 juvenile fish are now in sea cages at the Trosc Teo farm. Cod have been farmed successfully in Norway, Iceland and Canada but this is the first time that a native strain of the fish has been bred and released in these numbers in Ireland. For this project the eggs were collected from the Celtic Sea, off the south coast, and were then hatched and nurtured at the NUIG Martin Ryan Institute’s base in Carna. The growth performance of the different groups will be monitored up to market size, with the better performing being selected for use in future breeding activities. The objective is that these fish will have been more disease-resistant and have grown rapidly to market size. The development of this project has been hailed as a milestone in Irish aquaculture and will aim to meet the huge market demand for cod, which is under intense pressure in the wild internationally. The Marine Institute and the National Development Plan’s marine research sub-programme financed the fouryear project and University College Cork, Bord Iascaigh Mhara and the Irish Seafood Producers’ Group have been partners in the programme.

Grant for Boathouse Éamon Ó Cuív T.D., Minister for Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs, announced on December 16th that he has sanctioned a grant of €200,000 for Carna and Islands Lifeboat to assist them in building a boathouse in Carna, Co. Galway. €167,000 will be provided under the Gaeltacht Improvement Scheme and €33,000 under the CLÁR Scheme. The Association recently purchased a new lifeboat. The Minister said that he was pleased to be able to sanction such a grant to the Carna and Islands Lifeboat as the boathouse would be a valuable addition. “I am happy that my Department was able to help Carna and Islands Lifeboat to continue with their plans

Febr uar y 2009

have made the bar a popular stop for locals and tourists on the busy Galway to Clifden road and we look forward to it reopening in the coming months. Good wishes also to a popular former employee in Tigh Festys, Mary McDonagh who has leased out the Shamrock Bar in Roundstone. Photos: Micky Coyne of Gowla who recently celebrated his 90th birthday with Colm Redmond of Johnny O Loghlen’s Bar and the Zetland Hotel. Friends and family of popular local man JJ Nee gathered at Johnny O Loghlens Bar for a surprise 60th birthday party where a great night was had by all. Photos and news courtesy of Bernard Lee.


Livestock Grant Heaney Meats Catering in Casla, Connemara has received €637,110 in a scheme of grant aid funding to the livestock and small meat sectors, which it is hoped will help to kick start economic activity and create additional job opportunities in the industry. The grant-aid will benefit 66 enterprises across the country grant-aid totaling €16.7 million under the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries, and Food’s Marketing and Processing Scheme. On the announcement of the funding for Heaney Meats and Catering, Minister Éamon Ó Cuív welcomed the funding and expressed that he thought it would assist the development of the catering sector in Connemara and its environs.

Connemara View Newspaper


Claddaghduff NS News Ribena Cup Soccer Tournament: The Claddaghduff Girls Team won the “A” Final in the Tournament and has qualified for the County Finals in April. Photo: Back (l-r): Ribena Presenter, Hannah Gordon, Marie Bourke, Ciara Hewitt, John Wallace, Roisin O’Malley, Kenneth Delappe, Kelsi Young, Aoife Doyle. Front (l-r): Alice Hannon, Sarah Dickenson, Chloe Wallace, Lauren Delappe.

Olympic Handball: The Omey Under-11 Olympic Handball Team, who were runners up in the County Finals on Monday December 15th in Claregalway. Photo: Back (l-r) Marie Dickenson, Rachel Laffey, Lauren Walsh, Ciara Hewitt, Maura West, Aoife Scullion, Marie Bourke. Front (l-r): Sarah Dickenson, Alice Hannon, Lauren Delappe, Céiti Daly. Absent from photo Molly Walsh.


Kylemore Abbey Past Pupils Reunion Although a closure of Kylemore Abbey School is planned ( June 2010), hundreds of past pupils want to stay in touch with each other and with the spirit of the school. A meeting of all past pupils who can come is being planned for Saturday 27th June 2009. Can You Come? Maybe you would like to contact local girls now abroad with whom you still have contact or try to gather your own class living locally. A great day is promised and everyone is welcome. If you are interested in keeping in touch with past pupils, even if you can’t come to this reunion, please send an email to Sharon Molloy at or to Sr. Karol O’Connell OSB at and for updates you can also contact Margaret Moroney or Michael Cummins, Baunogues, Moyard, Co. Galway.

ganised by local group Conamara Environmental Education and Cultural Centre, Letterfrack who are celebrating their 25th birthday, 1984-2009. An abundance of music, song and dance awaits the visitor – great trad with Sean Tyrell, Yvonne Kane, Michelle Mulcahy, Frank Custy, Teresa Custy, Johnny Mullins, Marcus Hernon and family, Johnny Connolly and lots more. There will also be a dollop of gospel from the Galway Gospel Choir, a blast of country from the great Niall Toner Band, and Sean Nós workshops with the Cunningham family as well as music workshops. A schedule of the weekend’s main events is listed below: Friday Feb 6th Letterfrack NS 10am: Storyteller Clare Murphy will wear her storyteller hat - a great treat for all. Ellis Hall 1pm: The Ballinakill Active Age Club welcomes Letterfrack School Band. An intergenerational occasion for singing, dancing and making mighty music. Letterfrack NS 8pm: ‘Cillin’ - a photographic exhibition will be launched by Oughterard based artist Lorraine Tuck showing local children’s burial grounds. One of the highlights of this year’s Taréis na Féile Bríde festival will be an exhibition titled ‘Leanaí i Limbo’ by Lorraine Tuck, the young photographer from Oughterard. Lorraine is an Honors Graduate in documentary photography from the University of Wales and this exhibition of children’s burial grounds in Conamara depicts a dark part of Irelands past. Lorraine presents us with a haunting photographic exhibition which opens on Friday 6th February at 8.00pm at Letterfrack NS and will be open to the public for the weekend. Renvyle Inn 10pm: Mighty trad with Johnny Connolly, Marcus Hernon and family. Saturday Feb 7th Letterfrack NS 11am: Music workshop for all ages – fiddle with Yvonne Kane, concertina with Jack Talty, various instruments with Frank Custy. Admission Adults €15, Students €10. The Bard’s Den 3:45pm: Session with all the workshop participants and teachers. Letterfrack Church 9pm: Galway Gospel Choir with special guest’s ‘Some Like It Hot’. The Bard’s Den 10:15pm: The great Niall Toner Band. Wonderful bluegrass/country music at its very best. Adm. €10. Sunday Feb 8th Ellis Hall 4pm: Sean Nós workshop with the Cunningham family. Adm Adults €10, Students €5. Molly’s Bar 5pm: Great trad session with the great Sean Tyrell and Johnny Mullins multi-instrumentalist. For more information on events contact Conamara Environmental Educational & Cultural Centre www.ceecc. org;; 095 41034 / 43443.

Dancing at Ellis Hall Social Dancing evenings are taking place at Ellis Hall on Monday nights from 8:30 to 10 p.m. on an ongoing basis. Dancers of all levels and ages are welcome, including absolute beginners and dances taught include Waltzing, Jiving, Quick-step, Foxtrot, Siege of Ennis and more. No partner is required and the cost is €10 per evening. For more information call into the hall on a Monday evening or call Sean on 087-282-4710.

A Connemara woman has become the first Irish person to complete the world’s biggest jigsaw puzzle, entitled “Life”. It took Caitríona Ní Dhraoighneáin, from Leitir Mór almost three months to complete the huge 24,000 piece jigsaw which she mostly worked on at night. The puzzle comes in four packets, breaking the art up into four vertical sections that join together to make ‘Life’. It is officially noted as the world’s biggest jigsaw in the Guiness Book of World Records.


Youth Fundraising Efforts

As usual Letterfrack will be making merry with their annual festival Tar Eis na Féile Bríde Feb. 6th – 8th which is or-

Making good use of their talents, young people from all over North Conamara raised lots of money for good causes over the Christmas period. The Mol an Oige concerts which took place on December 19th in Creeragh

Connemara View Newspaper

Febr uar y 2009

Tar Eis na Feile Bride ‘09 Feb. 6th-8th

Café under new management The newly refurbished café at located at the Connemara West Complex is now under the new management of Orlaith Scannell Wallace and Niall Scannell who have been serving hearty wholesome food there since mid January. Well known Chef Egon Hinze is also on board to serve up tasty hot lunches daily at tempting prices; for example bacon and cabbage or oven baked salmon with potatoes and vegetables for €6.95, with students paying a special rate of just €6. Warming homemade soups and a great range of healthy salads are also on offer. Cooked breakfasts and snacks, and regular vegetarian options also ensure that there is something to suit every appetite. Orlaith’s homemade desserts will also tempt those with a sweet tooth! Future plans involve providing a local catering service, outdoor seating in the summer season, and hosting events in the attractive new space. As well as catering to the students and staff of GMIT, the reopening of the café has been greeted enthusiastically by the staff of Connemara West, FORUM, Connemara Community Radio and all in the surrounding area, and is also open to the general public. The College Café is now open from 9:30 to 5 from Monday to Saturday, and is located at the side of the GMIT building opposite the entrance to Ellis Hall. Photo: The new proprietors of the College Café, Niall Scannell, Orlaith Scannell-Wallace and chef Egon Hinze.

Ballinakill Active Age Funding Ballinakill Active Age Club has received funding of €600 under the Scheme of Community Support for Older People. The Scheme is administered and funded by the Department of Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs with the services delivered by local community and voluntary groups. This Scheme assists qualifying older people, aged 65 years and over, by means of community based grants. Funding is provided towards the once-off cost of installing monitored alarm systems, door and window locks, door chains, security lighting and smoke alarms.

Leitir Mór

Church and in the Church of Ireland Clifden on December 21st, raised over €2000 with €550 going to the Niall Mellon Township Trust in South Africa and €1600 going to the Elm Tree Centre in Clifden. Almost 100 young singers, dancers, actors and musicians took part in these heartwarming events which were organised by the award winning Conamara Environmental Education and Cultural Centre Letterfrack. Not to be outdone, the students of Letterfrack NS who are well known for their music, also used their talents to raise money with a blast of carol singing, and throwing in their annual recycling toy fair money, they raised over €650 which goes to Concern to help with their good work. Mol an Óige agus tiocfiadh siad - and in this case the young people certainly did the business, so well done to all.

Maam / Leenane

Maam Women’s Group Weekend Away 10 members of the Women’s Group spent a weekend away in the McWilliam Park Hotel in Claremorris in December. Nine other women joined the group for Christmas Dinner on 6th. Members and friends enjoyed the music and dancing and everyone got a Christmas gift in the Lucky Dip. We had a fantastic time and would highly recommend this hotel to other groups. Continued on next page

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Maam / Leenane

Maam Women’s Group continued Christmas Social On December 19th the Maam women were off again for another Christmas celebration! This time the venue was Burke’s, Clonbur, and 14 women enjoyed a lovely meal and a great night out. Thank you to the ladies who organised both the weekend away and the Christmas social. Máire Lukes A Party was held in Maire Luke’s Restaurant in Tourmakeady for C.D.S. Staff, and people on the Fás and Rural Social Schemes in the area. Over 50 participants attended the event. Music was provided by Paddy Joe Hoban and a great night was had by all. Golden Mile of Galway Ten people from the Maam area travelled to the Claregalway Hotel on January 22nd for the Golden Mile of Galway awards. Maam Women’s Group entered the Tullaghy Road in this years competition. Coiste Forbartha an Mhama was represented by Jack Hanley and Anita represented Joyce Country Echo. Women’s Group members who attended the presentations included Maura Murphy, Sadie Coyne, Mary McHugh, Breege Gavin, Sheila Laffey, Rosemary Han-

ley, Patricia Kirwan Doyle and Mary Hopkins. The Women’s Group won awards for the Golden Mile in 2005, 2006, & 2007. Peter Feeney, Mayor of County Galway, Marie Mannion, Heritage Officer, Brid Higgins, Assistant Heritage Officer, members of Galway Co. Council and Galway Rural Development attended the event. This year 22 Groups entered the competition and there were 6 awards. Congratulations to Leenane Development Association who won the award for the Best Litter Free/Safe Mile for the Glanagimla Road. Martina Kane and Hazel Wade accepted the award on behalf of Glanagimla, Leenane. Card Games Progressive - 25 Card Games continue every Tuesday evening in Ionad Pobail an Mhama at 8.30pm. Great prizes, raffle, and refreshments served each night. Birthday Parties Congratulations to Frank Lyons, Maam Cross, who celebrated his Birthday with a party for family and friends in Peacocke’s Hotel on January 10th. Music was provided by the Brennan Family. Family, friends and neighbours enjoyed a Birthday Party for Brendan Lydon, Bunnavockaun, Maam, on Saturday, 31st January. The party took place in The Kilmilkin Bar and music was by Cois Tine and Johnny Connolly on the accordion. Births Congratulations to Paul and Marie Therese Keane, Raigha, Maam, on the birth of their daughter Ava. Congratulations to Nico and Kem Venneman, Maam/Galway, on the birth of their son Cian. Rosemary Hanley

Darts in the Valley 2008 Once again the annual charity darts night was held in Keanes Bar, Maam, on Sunday 28th December. This year we were raising money for two charities, Galway Hospice and C.F.Ireland. In total 45 lads played from Tourmakeady, Camus, Cornamona, Cloughbrack, Clonbur, Maam and many other parts of Galway and Mayo. Enda Brown came back to try and win a two in a row. After a long hard battle, he became only the 3rd man ever to win a two in a row Shangi Hi Competition in Maam. The other two winners were Sean Breathnach, Camus and Terry Óg, Maam. Congrats to Enda for winning and to all the other lads for taking time out to play, thanks lads. A big thank you to the ladies who helped in different ways during the night, Mary, Maureen, Patricia, Brid, Rita, Ann Marie, Grainne, Lorraine, Roisin, Sinead, Amanda, Olivia, Ruth and Bridie. Maybe next year these ladies might play in a Ladies Competition. Finally, thanks to Martin and James in the bar. A Big Get Well Soon to Jack from everybody in Keane’s Bar. The grand total raised for the night was €950 Hopefully, we will be at it again next year. T. Higgins


Permission for All Weather Pitch Cllr. Thomas Welby has been informed by Galway County Council that planning permission has been granted for an All Weather Pitch facility in Oughterard. This All Weather Facility will be located in the grounds of St. Pauls Secondary School. The pitch committee was previously allocated a grant of €200,000 under the Recreational Capital Programme of Galway

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County Council and Cllr. Welby worked closely with the committee to secure the funding. Cllr Welby said “I am delighted that this badly needed facility has moved a step closer to construction as it will cater for in excess of 400 students in the immediate area, but it also has the potential to cater for the youth in the wider catchment area for both sport and other activities”.

Sewerage Scheme Stalled Padraic McCormack, T.D. and Cllr Sean Kyne have raised their concerns that there has been no progress made on the provision of the much needed Sewerage Scheme for Oughterard despite his attempts to initiate action on the issue. They both claim the issue is being put back and forth between Galway Co. Co. and the Department of the Environment despite the fact that it is supposed to be in the Works Programme for 2007-09. In a statement on the issue in the Dáil Mr McCormack said “Each time it comes back to the County Council they reply to the points raised by the Department of Environment but once again it was sent back for very trivial reasons. This appears to be a stalling progress as the Government has no money available to allow the scheme to proceed. Cllr Sean Kyne also accused the Department of the Environment of “messing” and condemned the continuous indecision and to-ing and fro-ing on the matter. Cllr Kyne indicated that the Council hopes to have the brief sent back to the Department once again this month.

Golden Mile Award In the Golden Mile of Galway competition, Oughterard was recently awarded the prize of “Mile Showing Best Potential”. Oughterard Culture and Heritage Group made the entry and received the award from Galway County Mayor Peter Feeney at the annual ceremony and 2009 Calendar Launch at the Claregalway Hotel on January 22nd.

Clann Resource Centre A home visitation programme meals on wheels meeting was held on Wednesday 28th January at Clann. Anyone interested in getting involved in the Meals on Wheels programme should contact the centre as volunteers are needed. Jobseekers/unemployed circle meet every Monday at 2.30pm and Thursday at 10.30am for a coffee and a chat, meet others and see how we can help. All are welcome. A Home Management course to help with budgeting etc has started every Tuesday from 10.30-12 at Clann. Comhluadar- get together for a chat and a cuppa, for anyone who has lost someone through suicide. Meetings take place every Wednesday from 8-9pm at Clann. For details of any Clann events contact Bríd on (091) 557633 or 087 6740471.

4th Annual Oughterard Youth Arts Festival The fourth year of the Oughterard Youth Arts Festival (Feb 27-Mar 1) sees a better line-up than ever before! Workshops for younger children as well as teenagers throughout the weekend include Hip Hop Dance, Pottery, DJ Workshops, Story-Painting, Creative Writing, Poetry, Storytelling, Digital Photography, Creating Fashion & Fashion Show Finale, Puppetry, Circle Dance, Nature Arts, and much more – see the full schedule at Continued on next page

Connemara View Newspaper

Youth Arts Festival Continued The Festival is organised by the OYAF Committee of Clann Resource Centre, and supported by the Arts Council and Galway County Arts Office. All workshops cost just €4 (€2 concession). Pre-booking is required. Booking forms are available at the Clann Resource Centre in Oughterard, by ringing 091 557633, or at For more information, contact Clann Resource Centre at 091 557633.

nemara Gateway Hotel on Sunday February 1st. Photo Before the game got underway (l-r) Joe Healy, Michael Conneely, Padraic McCormack T.D., Seamus Acton, Martin Joe Cooke and PJ Burke. Oughterard Photos by Tom Broderick.

Farewell to Reverend Towers

Milestone Birthday Patrick Coyne, originally from Curr, Maam and now living in Ballinrobe celebrated his 98th birthday at the Connemara Gateway Hotel on Tuesday January 20th with family and friends. He and his sister Eileen Clancy were born and brought up in Curr and Eileen (90) now lives in Glengowla, Oughterard. Photo: Eileen Clancy and her brother Patrick Coyne with his children (back l-r) Pat

Coyne, Kathleen Heskin, Maureen Onyrscuk and Martin Coyne, Patrick’s grandson (kneeling) also called Patrick Coyne with his son Adam Coyne (great grandson aged 4).

ORFC Valentine’s Ball A Black Tie Valentine’s Ball will take place at the Ross Lake Hotel on February 14th in aid of Oughterard Rugby Football Club. The dress code is formal; tickets are €60 and can be obtained by calling Paul on 086 648 9427.

Oughterard Playground The Playground Committee is pleased to announce that Galway CoCo has granted planning permission for the development of the proposed playground at Corribdale Grounds. There will be a general meeting on Wednesday 18th February 2009 in the Oughterard Community Centre at 8 pm. New committee members will be invited to join, and from this committee new officers will be elected. Details of the playground will be presented on the night. Please do not forget our fundraising collection boxes which are on display in many retail outlets locally. All donations kindly accepted. Thank you on behalf of the committee. Patrick Faherty, Chairperson

25 for Croi A large crowd participated in a 25 card drive Fundraiser in aid of Croi at the Con-

On Sunday 1st February, Kilcummin Church of Ireland Parish in Oughterard said its very reluctant farewell to its Rector, the Very Rev. Patrick Towers on his retirement. Kilcummin is a country parish, in contrast to Patrick’s lively city parish of St Nicholas in Galway. The attendance at the service spoke volumes about Patrick’s ability to relate to and appeal to people from such a wide range of different ages, life-styles, cultures and attitudes. A spokesperson from Kilcummin said “We wish him everything good in his retirement, sad as we are to lose him.” Photo: Very Rev. Patrick Towers with Anthony Previte who played some airs on the occassion.


New Eagle’s Nest Building A new facility at Eagle’s Nest was officially opened by Minister Eamon O Cuiv. See full story on page 18.

Trad for Africa The annual Traditional Music Session in aid of Famine Relief in Africa was held in Ros’s Bar (formerly Diamond’s Bar) Tully, Renvyle, Co. Galway on December 28th. Some of the musicians who always supported our fundraisers are gone now – Johnny Mark Coyne RIP, and more recently, Charlie O’Malley RIP. Somehow it was very fitting that their two granddaughters Emma O’Sullivan and Sorcha O’Malley took to the floor and delighted all with their Sean Nós Dancing. Brendan and Phroinsias Hernan left down fiddle and accordion and also took to the floor. Nearly €600 was raised which will have already gone to John O’Shea in GOAL as you read this. We thank all the musicians, organisers and participants for their continued support and all who came on the day. It was wonderful to hear the enjoyment in the voices of so many who thanked us for organising the event - audience and musicians alike. We’ll do it again-‘till then. Patricia Keane

Connemara View Newspaper


Roundstone’s Twin Town It’s the 5th Anniversary since Roundstone twinned with Noyelles Sous Lens, France, and I am glad to say that at last the fabrication of twinning pole mounted signs will be erected on both ends of the village. In the first week of June there will be about 30 people from Noyelles coming to stay in Roundstone for a week, to celebrate the 5th anniversary, accompanied by the new Mayor Alain Roger. Then from the 2nd April to the 12th April ten young people from the Roundstone Youth Club are invited to interact with the French young for a week. In the beginning of September a delegation from Roundstone will be going to Noyelles for a weekend of celebrations with the French youth and a tree planting ceremony to mark the five years with Roundstone as a twinned village, so early June should be a good start to the tourist season.

Tidy Towns The adjudicators will be starting in June for the Tidy Town Competition, so there is no time like the present to get our act together! Meetings are taking place on a regular basis, and in fact through the FAS scheme work is very much ongoing, with general tidy ups, and the creation of walled gardens in prominent parts of the village. This sort of tidy up and creation must not just be left to the few, it’s up to all of us as a community to be creative, so if anybody in Roundstone has ideas of what they think should be done to give us a few more brownie points for the year 2009, either do it, or you could suggest ideas to me or Michael Ferron, Paddy the yank, or Donal Nee. I am sure we give our thanks to the representatives of the Galway County Council for Connemara that we are lucky in Roundstone to have such a Scheme as this.

much wider circulation. I have posted on the website the new Roundstone Arts week poster for the year 2009, in the hope I can raise enough money for the Arts week. We are also creating a calendar of Roundstone Community photographs; these will be photos that were taken over the last ten years. So now you know where the money is going, and the importance of getting in the 2009 subscriptions in. If we are going to survive visitor wise we have to make every effort that we are very much alive in this very unique village.

Condolences Sadly after a long illness, Michael Mullen of Dohulla passed away at home recently. After the funeral mass in Ballyconneely he was laid to rest in Gurteen. Our condolences go to his family, from all in the village and on a personal note to his brothers John, Pat, Tom and Michael’s wife Dot. May he rest in peace. Richard de Stacpoole

Slipway & Hall Opneings The Official opening of the Inishnee Slipway and Lower Community Hall took place in Roundstone on Sunday December 14th. Photos: Official opening of Lower Community Hall, Roundstone. (L-r) Michael Reynolds, Aoife McDonagh, Minister Eamon O Cuiv, Martin Conneely, Coilin Gavin of Galway CoCo and Nicholas Griffin. Pictured at the opening of the Inishnee Slipway in December were (l-r) Michael Reynolds, Senator Chris Dodd and Minister Eamon O Cuiv. Photos courtesy of Bridie Davis

25 weekly at the Shamrock It’s been a few years now since we have had a 25 card drive in the village. There will be a game in the Shamrock Bar every Wednesday right through to the end of February commencing at 8pm.

Roundstone Brochure The new brochure for Roundstone is now finished. It contains a lot more information than the one that we did two years ago; also the completed brochure will have a page of its own on the website, which will give it a

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Connemara Conquer Carlow After the Christmas break our first game was at home against Queens from Belfast on January 17th. This game nearly didn’t start as heavy rain and storm force winds meant the game was in doubt an hour before kickoff. We played with the wind in the first half and were 10 nil up at half time, but the

stronger visitors took over in the second half and ran out 26-15 winners. Our next game was away to Waterpark, and with another couple of players back we were hopeful of a good result. Three tries and a few penalties gave us a 26-9 point lead at half time, Peter O’Toole, Bernard Keaney and Frank Leonard all crossing the line. A few slip ups in the second half allowed the home side back into the game, but tries from Sean Joyce and Troy Nathan secured the win with a final score of 40-35 and a bonus point. On Saturday, January 31st, we were at home to the then second placed Co. Carlow, and again after heavy overnight rain a lot of work had to be done to make the pitch playable. A good start from us saw Kevin Keogh charge through for the opening try which Sean Joyce converted. Troy Nathan scored a second ten minutes later and we were 12 nil up before the visitors settled. We defended well and some big tackles kept them at bay until just before half time when they got in for a try. 10 minutes into the second half they got a drop goal to make it 12-8. With Paddy O’Toole, Bennie Bester and Jason East all going off injured and Michael Aspell sent to the sin bin for ten minutes, things were looking bad for us, but a huge tackle by Paddy Madden lifted the team and supporters, and for the rest of the game we were on the front foot. With ten minutes remaining we kicked a penalty to leave the final score 15-8. That win puts us well up the table into seventh for now, and with a break for the Six Nations the lads will have a chance to rest and recover. The next Senior Fixture is away to Naas on February 21st.

Junior Rugby The Junior team were well beaten in the end by Ballina in the Cup on Sunday February 1st. We were well in the game up to almost half time when we made a mistake and let them in for an easy try. The Mayo men got a second try shortly after halftime and although we tried hard we could never get back into the game. They scored two more tries near the end. We are top of the table in the league with two home games left against NUIG on the 15th February and West Offaly Lions, who are currently in second place, on February 22nd.

Youth and Mini The cup games will be starting in the next few weeks for the U18’s, U16’s and U14’s. The Mini’s eventually got back to training after cancellations due to frost and rain. We went to Ballina last Saturday February 31st and despite the mucky and wet pitch after Friday’s heavy rain, the boys and girls had a great day. Well done to the coaches and parents who travelled with them. We hope to arrange a few more blitzes as soon as the weather picks up. Peter Keane

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Febr uar y 2009

Darts: Peter McMahon Memorial Cup The annual Peter McMahon Memorial Darts Cup competition took place at the Atlantic Bar in Clifden on Sunday January 11th. Over 60 players from all over Connemara and further afield competed on the day. In the first semifinal, Joachim McHugh was defeated by Gerry Aspell, while Harry O Toole lost out to eventual winner Richie McMahon in the second semi final. The draw for the Inter Pub fixtures for the year also took place in the afternoon, details of which can be found below. Photos: Winner Richie McMahon is presented with his trophy and the Peter McMahon Memorial Cup by Peter Coneys and Declan Ridge. Runner Up Gerry Aspell receives his trophy from Vincent Leggett and Peter Coneys.

West Connemara Doubles Joachim McHugh and Eamonn Mannion captured the 2008 West Connemara Doubles Championship after they defeated county players Tommy Flaherty and Máirtin Griffin in an epic final at the Atlantic Hotel in Clifden. (See photo right)

Gráinne Mhaols GAA Open Darts Competitions Competition fixtures to March 1st (March dates in next issue): John Canavan/Máirtín Berry Memorial Cup Doubles. Morans, Carna, Friday February 6th at 7.30pm. Peter Veldon Memorial Cup Doubles (Draw for Partners). Atlantic Hotel Sunday February 15th at 3pm. Mary Canning Memorial Cup Ladies Singles. Atlantic Hotel, Sunday February 15th at 3pm. The Atlantic Cup Mixed Doubles. Atlantic Coast, Sunday February 22nd at 3pm. Peter Lydon Memorial Cup Singles. Atlantic Coast, Sunday March 1st at 3pm.

Connemara Inter-Pub Darts Team Championships and Shield 2009 The Inter Pub Darts Team Championships and Shield 2009 is now underway, having begun on January 24th. A full list of venues and competitions is available at the venues or online at Dates and details of the knock out phase which will begin on Friday March 6th will be in the next issue of March 5th. Footnote: The Gráinne Mhaols Darts Administrative Committee would like to wish all the participating teams the very best of luck in both the Group League and Knockout Phases of the Championship and Shield Competitions. It is imperative that all the fixtures are fulfilled. Teams who bring the competition into disrepute through the non-fulfillment of a fixture will be automatically expelled from the 2009 Connemara Inter-Pub Championships and Shield. All the Group League matches must be played in the exact chronological order outlined in the Master Fixture Plan, though not necessarily on the exact dates. The Committee have no problem with any two teams who mutually agree to bring their match forward or to put their match back, so long as they ensure that the match in question is played prior to the designated date of their next official fixture in the Master Fixtures Plan. Please note that an official fixture can only be brought forward or put back if both teams mutually agree to do so. Paul Gannon

Connemara SportsView

Renvyle GAA Juvenile Committee Gets the Green Light at AGM The Marian Hall Tullycross was the venue for Renvyle G.A.A.’s Annual Convention on Sunday February 1st. The meeting opened with a minute’s silence for all the deceased members of the parish in 2008 and a vote of sympathy for Naomh Feichín’s Bernie Kilkenny was also expressed. The Juvenile Committee which was recently established at a specially convened meeting in the Teach Ceoil in Tully was officially ratified by all the members present. The Principal Officers on this committee are Willie Gannon (Chairperson), Stephen O’Callaghan (Treasurer) and Mikey Faherty (Secretary). Outgoing Junior A Manager Thady Salmon and his management team were commended on their excellent work throughout the year which culminated in a retention of the West Board Junior A League Title and also the West Board Under 21 B Championship Title. The heartbreaking one point County Final defeats to Athenry and Dunmore will test the resolve, resilience and character of the Renvyle players in the year ahead with the proposed changes in the competitive structure at County Board level likely to render the attainment of Intermediate status all the more difficult. Outgoing Under 12 Managers Joachim Lydon and Brendan Kane were also singled out for special mention in recognition of their team’s victory over An Cheathrú Rua in the West Board Division 3 Final. Unfortunately the competitive structures did not afford them an opportunity to contest a County Final against the North East Division 3 winners. This team bestowed great honour on the club in October when they were the recipients of Coiste Peil na n-Óg’s Team Of The Month Award in association with PF Sports Equipment, Tuam. Election of Officers: Chairperson-Stephen Salmon; Vice-Chairperson-Ollie Faherty; Secretary-Mark Gannon; Vice-Secretary-Thady Salmon; Treasurer-Jackie O’Farrell; Vice-Treasurer-Mikey Faherty; Registrar-David Kearney; PRO-Fr. Gerry Burns; Development Officer -Gerry Salmon; Delegates to West Board and County Board -Stephen Salmon and Mark Gannon. Election of Managers: Junior A-Thady Salmon; Junior C-Michael John Gannon; Under 21-Thady Salmon; Under 18-Paul O’Neill; Under 16-To be appointed by the Juvenile Committee; Under 14-Brendan Kane and Joachim Lydon; Under 12-David Regan and Gerry Salmon; Under 10-Finian Sheridan; Under 8-Stephen O’Callaghan. A motion submitted by Club Member Paddy Gannon re Tullycross Sportsfield was deferred to a full meeting of the Club Membership at a later date. Paul Gannon Photo: Renvyle Under 12 Players George Mullen and Josh Lydon proudly display the Coiste Peil na n-Óg Team Of The Month Award (October 2008). This team was managed by Joachim Lydon and Brendan Kane.

Grainne Mhaols Historic Junior Success Highlighted At Cruinniu Bliantúil Mná An Iarthair The 2008 Annual General Meeting of Gráinne Mhaols G.A.A. Club was held in Ros’s Bar, Tully recently. Success in adult football within the County competitive structures eluded the West Connemara women who failed to reach either the County Senior League Final or County Intermediate Championship Final. Redemption came late on in the form of a first West Galway Senior League title in four

Connemara SportsView

years at the expense of County Intermediate Championship Finalists and All Ireland Intermediate Sevens Championship Winners Clonbur. Gráinne Mhaols also competed in the latter and after progressing through the group stages in second place, they were defeated in the Shield Semi-Final by The Banner from Clare. In many respects the exploits of the Seniors were overshadowed by those of the Juniors. Melissa Wallaces’ charges annexed the West Galway Junior B Title and the Stella Mangan County Sevens Shield Title and many of these players will be hoping to progress to the ranks of Intermediate Championship and Senior League Football in the year ahead Five Gráinne Mhaols players featured in the thrilling Connacht Junior Championship Final between Roscommon and Connemara with full forward Mairead Coyne receiving the Player of the Match Award. Mairead also played a starring role in the Underdogs narrow defeat to All Ireland Junior Champions London. Lisa Coohill was very much to the fore at senior level with Galway and played exceptionally well in the Championship victory over Laois and subsequent somewhat unlucky Quarter-Final defeat to reigning All Ireland Champions Cork. If participation levels are the true measure of success at underage level then 2008 was a very positive year for girls’ football in West Connemara. Pride of place goes to the Under 11’s who captured a West Galway Title under the management of Johnny Salmon. It was also a year to remember for Zara Mortimer who was part of the Galway Under 14 squad that reached the All Ireland Final. Election of Officers:-Chairperson-Melissa Wallace, Secretary-Paul Gannon, Vice Secretary-James O’Neill, Treasurer-Lorraine Heffernan,Vice Treasurer-Lyn Heanue, Registrar-Colleen Curran, Child Welfare Officer-Mary Young, Integration Officer-Bríd McDonagh, Oifigeach na Gaeilge-Máire Ní Chlochartaigh, PRO-Paul Gannon & Melissa Wallace. Committee Members-Catherine Walsh, Maura Coyne, John Francis Flaherty, Mikey Flaherty. Honorary Presidents-Mary Coyne & Ann Flaherty. Election of Management Teams:-Senior/ Intermediate – Paul Gannon, Mary Young, John Francis Flaherty. Junior-Helena Lydon, Paula Coohill, Maura Cloherty. Under 17/18-Paul Gannon, Mary Young, John Francis Flaherty. Under 15/16-Finian Sheridan, Mikey Faherty, Maggie Birchmore. Under 13/14-Melissa Wallace, Mikey Faherty. Under 11/12-Paul Gannon, Catherine Walsh, Celine Davis, James O’Neill. Under 9/10-Evelyn Faherty, Paul Gannon, Colleen Curran. Pre-Season Adult Training ( Juniors and Seniors) - Every Saturday 5-7pm at the West Connemara Sports and Leisure Centre Clifden for the entire duration of February and March. New players welcome. Gráinne Mhaols G.A.A. would like to take this opportunity to thank the Manager Dave Shaughnessy for making this facility available to our players. The West Galway Ladies Development Association Annual General Meeting takes place in the Atlantic Hotel, Clifden on Sunday February 8th commencing at 2pm. Paul Gannon Photo: Grainne Mhaols Senior Stalwarts Nicola Walsh, Paula Coohill and Noreen Coyne received special awards at Mná an Iarthair’s Annual Social in The Atlantic Hotel on January 24th.

Naomh Fechin GAA AGM Naomh Feichin GAA Club held its AGM on the 16th January 2009 in JC’s Bar Function Room and the following Officers were elected: President: Fr. J. Ronayne. Vice President: Tom Connolly. Juvenile President: Paul Fitzpatrick. H President: Peter Fitzpatrick. Chairperson: Tom Vaughan. Vice Chairperson: Martin Conroy. Secretary: Ann Mitchell. Treasurer: Tony Coyne. Vice Treasurer: John Coneys.

Febr uar y 2009

Coaching Officer: Paul Fitzpatrick. 2 Club Delegates: F. Foley and T. Coyne. Naomh Fechin GAA Club has received a GAA Grant of €6,400 to assist the development of the new Juvenile Training Pitch. Naomh Fechin Treasurer Tony Coyne is pictured above accepting the funds from the Galway GAA County Board Treasurer Bernie O’ Connor.

Mannions AFC

Champions League Sweepstake Mannions AFC have had quite a lengthy break in fixtures over the Christmas period and it’ll be another couple of weeks until we have our next competitive match. We’ve tried to keep ourselves fit over the last while with friendly matches and there’s also some fantastic football on television at the moment to keep us entertained. Mannions AFC in conjunction with The Champions League (don’t tell Michel Platini) will be running our annual Champions League Sweepstake competition. It’s business time in the soccer world’s most prestigious club competition so we’d better focus on what to expect. Over the past 4 finals we’ve had 5 English Teams, Liverpool (twice) and one appearance each from Man Utd, Chelsea and Arsenal, and with all 4 teams in the knock out stages it’s hard not to see at least one of them reaching the final again. Apart from Man Utd, the English teams are not really in form at the moment, dropping points against clubs far beneath them in the league and not showing much consistency. The great thing about the Champions League is that you can forget about your domestic troubles and go on a European adventure like Liverpool most famously did in 2005 when they only finished 5th in the Premier League. Juventus, Roma, Inter and Real Madrid are the opposition for the English clubs and it’s a straight forward battle to see if the Premier League is better than Serie A or La Liga. The Inter v Man Utd match will be the in-form sides against each other. Both won their leagues last year, are top of their leagues this year and have managers which have won the competition before; it’ll probably be 0-0 in the 2 legs with it being settled on penalties. Real Madrid v Liverpool will be my tie of the round as they have had moments of class and complete self destruction this season, and with 14 titles between them they know how to create amazing European nights. With so many great teams it rarely goes to the favourites, and this time the kiss of death is waiting for Barcelona. They have had an amazing start to their season under new coach, and former heroic player, Guardiola, who has tidied up a team of stars to create a powerful football unit. Messi, Henry and Eto’o are now the most prolific attacking unit in club football, Barcelona have a commanding lead over their rivals in La Liga and apart from a last day defeat when they had already qualified they have shown the same form in this competition. Underdogs upsetting the big European clubs is not a rare thing and teams like Bayern Munich, Lyon, Porto, Athletico, Sporting, Villarreal and Panathinaikos will be hoping to do the same, with most of them playing each other they will be feeling confident of a Quarter Final place. The great thing about the Mannions AFC Champions League Sweep Stake is that fate gives you the winner of the competition and you don’t have to study form, fixtures or anything else. My favourite sweep stake memory is when a regular in a pub I was managing got really annoyed when he drew a team which had no chance of winning and got abuse from all his friends for a couple of weeks. It was Euro 2004, the team was Greece and he eventually laughed all the way to the bank. Call in or contact Mannion’s Bar on 095 21780 for more details, entries are €20 each and are limited to 32 places. Kevin Gavin

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Connemara Golf 07/12/08 18 Holes Stableford. Ladies: 1st: Margaret Lavelle (10) 31pts, 2nd: Deirdre Murphy (15) 31pts, CSS 33pts. Mens: 1st: Liam Reilly (4) 36pts, 2nd: Oliver McDonnell (11) 36pts, 3rd: Stephen Heanue (27) 35pts, CSS 35pts. 14/12/08 18 Holes Stableford. Hamper No 6. Ladies: 1st: Deirdre Murphy (15)35pts, 2nd: Kathleen Burke (32)32pts, 3rd: Evelyn King (19)32pts, CSS-34pts. Mens: 1st: Michael King (15) 39pts. 2nd: John Roche (9) 37pts, 3rd: Eddie Flaherty (20) 36pts, CSS- 34pts. 21/12/08 18 Holes Stroke, Hamper No7. Ladies: 1st: Maureen Brennan (19) 70

Nett, front 9: Carmel Gaughan, Back 9: Evelyn King CSS 72. Mens: 1st: Johnny Fitzpatrick (18) 64 Nett (b9), 2nd: PJ Brennan (14) 64 Nett, Gross: Rory Sweeney (4) 75gross, 3rd: John Roche (9) 68Nett (b3), 4th: Gabriel McNamara (15) 68Nett, 5th: Jamie Flaherty (11) 69 Nett (b9), 6th: Billy Reilly (11) 69Nett, CSS 73. 28/12/08 18 Holes Stableford, 1st: Billy Fahey (22) 39pts, 2nd: Jamie Flaherty (10) 38pts, 3rd: Michael Kearney (15) 37pts, CCS: 36pts. 31/12/08 Open 18 Holes Stableford. Ladies: 1st: Grainne Moyles (22) 33pts (b9) Rathfarnham GC, 2nd: Kathy Callaghan (21) 33pts (b9) UK, CSS- 33pts (Red Only). Mens: 1st: Tom Diviney (11) 41pts Gort GC, 2nd: Dermot Nevin (12) 39pts (b9) Beachpark GC, Gross: Liam Reilly (4) 34pts Oughterard GC, 3rd: Peadar O’Flatharta (9) 39pts Bearna GC, CSS: 37pts. 04/01/09 18 Holes Singles Stableford. Ladies: 1st: Deirdre Murphy (15) 35pts (b9), CSS: 36pts. Mens: 1st: Eddie Flaherty (18) 45pts, 2nd: MJ Ruddy (19) 43pts, Gross: Liam Reilly (4) 37pts, 3rd: Jamie Flaherty (10) 40pts, CSS: 37pts. 25/01/09 Singles Stableford, Ladies: 1st: Evelyn King 37pts. Mens: 1st: John Heanue (21) 43pts, 2nd: Pat Casey (14) 41pts, Gross: Paddy Flaherty (6) 33pts, 3rd: Pat O’Neill (20)40pts, CSS: 36pts.

01/02/09 Captains Drive In 1st: Gareth Anthony(6), Marty Courcey (17), Paddy Gannon(18), Evelyn King(19), 56nett, 2nd: Joe Joyce(12), Johnny Fitzpatrick(16), Geraldine McGettigan(21) Bernie Ward(28), 60.3nett, 3rd: Rory Sweeney(3), David Glynn(17), Ernest Herzog(22), Agnes Stokes(23) 60.5nett

Oughterard Golf John Waters and Kathleen Dolly, the incoming Captains for 2009 at Oughterard Golf Club held their Captains Drive Off recently. They were joined by over 100 members and friends to celebrate the start of their year, and as one would expect at Oughterard there was a wonderful friendly atmosphere with no shortage of high spirits which was followed by a 4 Ball Blitz Competition and meal. Photo (l-r): David Walsh (Vice-Captain), Kathleen Dolly (Ladies Captain), John Watters (Captain) and Peggie Blehein (Ladies Vice-Captain). Photo

OAFC First Sod Turned

Oughterard Association Football Club (OAFC) enjoyed a momentous occasion at the beginning of the New Year, when FAI Chief Executive John Delaney turned the first sod on the new sporting development and associated facilities at New Village, Glenn High Road, Oughterard on Sunday January 18th. The event kicked off with a celebratory reception in the Connemara Gateway Hotel, with speeches from Delaney and OAFC chairperson Paul Silke, before guests were transferred by coach to the brand new development, as the well known sporting chief turned the first sod on the sports pitches, overlooking the picturesque Lough Corrib on a sunny winter’s afternoon. To celebrate this marvellous occasion, the FAI Chief Executive invited 50 children from the Oughterard club to a home game of the Irish International Soccer team and four lucky children will have their sporting dreams come true when they are picked to meet with Ireland’s International Soccer Manager, Giovanni Trapatonni and the entire Irish soccer squad! This exciting announcement was made when Delaney stopped off at the local Oughterard national school, where he met with children, parents and teachers. Delaney was joined at the OAFC development by TD Michael D. Higgins, Councillors Tom Welby, Seamus Walsh, Sean Kyne, and Seán Ó Tuairisc, Art Friel of the Connaught Branch FAI, Jim Noone, Regional Development officer of FAI, Nick Leeson, Chief Executive Officer of Galway United, Eamon Naughton, Eircom League Controller, John Cleary, and Michael Geary of the Galway and District League, along with an abundance of local and national media, ensuring the event was a huge success. OAFC has been working diligently to raise the

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Febr uar y 2009

courtesy of Tom Broderick The course at Oughterard which underwent a major redevelopment 10 years ago is now generally regarded as one of the finest parkland courses in the West. The club has continued to upgrade the course and in recent years carried out a major drainage programme the benefits of which have been realised by members and visitors alike despite the record levels of rainfall. For 2009 the club has been honoured by the Golfing Union of Ireland with hosting next August the Connacht Finals of the All Ireland Cups and Shields Competitions. The Green Fees at Oughterard are very reasonable with special offers and discounts available for groups and societies as well as an Open Day every Tuesday from 31st March. The club has vacancies for new members and persons interested in joining or reserving tee times should contact the office or pro shop for more information. 25/12/08 Results of 15 Hole Voucher Competition.1st JJ Faherty (12) 38 pts. 2nd Tom Butler (17) 37 pts. Gross G. O’Cualain (6) 27 Gross pts (17B9). 3rd Martin Callagy (10) 35 pts. Cat A (0-11) Maurice Power (7) 34 pts. Cat B (12-17) John Morley (12) 34 pts. Cat C (18+) Tom Durkin (18) 33 pts (22B9). 01/02/08 15 Hole Voucher Competition, 1st Michael O’Halloran (14) 39 pts (22b9, 15b6). 2nd Brian Fahy (23) 39 pts (22b9, 14b6). Gross: Gay Ryan (9) 24 Gross Pts. 3rd Micky Lee (15) 35 pts (23b9). Cat. A (0-12) Rod Savage (12) 34 pts (18b9, 12b6). Cat B (13-18) Pat Cunningham (13) 35 pts (18b9). Cat. C Gerry Carroll (19) 33 pts.

much needed funds for this development and in order to reach the estimated costs of €1.5 million for full site development, a Pitchmaker Draw is being held on St. Patrick’s Day, with a host of prizes including a sporty Mazda 2 car, boat and trailer, €2,000 Holiday Voucher and a €1,000 Marks &

Spencer voucher, €500 laptop and many more prizes. Tickets for the draw are priced at €50 and are available through the club by emailing or calling 085 1000 074. Photo: John Delaney, Chief Executive of the FAI, with Paul Silke, Chairman Oughterard Association Football Club, pictured with some young club members at the sod turning of the club’s new sporting development and associated facilities at Oughterard. Photo by Iain McDonald

Tuesday Kids Club The Tuesday Club meets at the West Connemara Sports and Leisure Centre at Clifden Community School every Tuesday from 5:30 to 7pm. It is open to boys and girls between the ages of 8 and 11 and a whole range of fun activities, games and sports take place every week. Adult supervisors are always needed so if any parents could help occasionally it would be much appreciated. For details call Michael Coyne on (095) 21622.

Connemara SportsView


Cafés, Pubs & Restaurants Abbeyglen Castle Hotel. Sky Road, Clifden. Open for dinner 7 nights a week. Early booking is advisable. Tuesday Night is Irish Night. Entertainment Nightly. Phone for special hotel rates. 095-21201. Kylemore Pass Hotel and Restaurant, Kylemore. Ideal for small weddings. Tranquillity Room suitable for Civil Weddings, & therapy-use. Restaurant for a special meal. Sailors Bar for affordable meals. Celebrate birthdays, anniversaries etc. Take friends for a drink in our unique bar. 095-41141. email: Steam Café at the Station House Courtyard. Clifden. Mouth watering selection of Salads, Sandwiches & Desserts. All Homemade. Java Republic Coffees and teas. Dinner & desserts available to order for collection. 09530600 Mon-Sat 10:30-5:30. Reopening in March. Mannions Bar. Market St., Clifden. Food served daily. Traditional Irish Music every weekend. Look at our billboard for schedule of gigs and pub quizzes. 095-21780. Oliver’s Seafood Bar and Restaurant. Cleggan. Fresh seafood lunches and evening meals served daily. Live music on Saturday nights. 095-44640. O’Dowds Bar & Seafood Restaurant. Roundstone Harbour. Food served daily from 10am-9:30pm. Fresh seafood daily. 095-35809.


Cards, Gifts & Flowers

Mannions Bikes. Bridge St, Clifden. 095-21160.

An extensive selection of greeting cards and gifts. Lotto. Newspapers & Magazines. Sweets. Office Supplies. King’s Paper Shop. Main St, Clifden. 095-21119. Connemara Florist. Main St, Clifden. 095-21565. Mon-Sat 10am-5:30pm. Amber offers a huge range of handmade soaps, bath balls, milks, scrubs and foams. Essential oils, burners and incenses. Dried flowers and pot pourri. All types of candles, coloured, scented and plain. Silver and amber jewellery. Great personalized gift boxes available made to your preference. Open 7 days, Bridge St, Clifden.095-22766. Gifts by Grace. Courthouse Sq., Clifden. Gifts, lamps, tables, jewellery, novelties. 095-22101. Celtic Shop & Tara Jewellers. Main Street, Clifden. 095-21064. Loads of February specials to greet the arrival of Spring. 20% Off Gold Jewellery. 20% Off Silver Jewellery over €100. Up to 20 to 50% Off Selected Clothing & Gifts. Homeware Plus & Shamrock Dry Cleaners. The Square, Clifden. Everything at discount prices! Household products and toiletries. Cards & gifts. Tools. So much more… 095-21348.

Boat Building

Books Clifden Bookshop offers a comprehensive range of titles with particular emphasis on local Connemara History, Irish literature, guide books, maps, best sellers, memoirs and book tokens. Also stockists of artist’s materials, cards & stationery. Provides ordering and mail-order service. The Clifden Bookshop, Main St, Clifden. 095-22020.

Building & Trade

Robert King Appliance Repair and Oil Burner Service/Repair. 095-22979 or 087-697-7505. Airflow Renewable Energy Solutions, Ballybrit, Galway. Daikin Air to Water Heat Pumps. Ground Source Geothermal Heat pumps. IVT Heat Recovery Ventilation. Solar Panels. System Design & Project Support. Domestic & Commercial. SEI Approved 3 year warranty.

Connemara View Directory

Cut your oil bill by two-thirds with solar powered water heating. Call Michael Carey for a free no obligation quote. Testimonials from satisfied customers available. SEI grants available. Carey Solar Powered Systems. Sky Rd. Clifden. 086-603-9299. Build your house or extension with energy-efficient timber framing. Over 15 years experience timber framing. Contact Pat O’Malley for a free quotation. Full service builder. C2 registered. Limited Company. North Star Builders. 087-228-3862 or 085-780-6351. Painting and Decorating: Interior and Exterior, Timber Floors sanded and varnished. Neat and tidy job guaranteed. Competitive rates. References available. Contact Johnny Coyne, Renvyle, 086-857-0302. MJ Trucks. Recess. Sand & Gravel. 1 ton bags: Sand, gravel, topsoil, all crushed stone material, decorative chippings, bark mulch. All types of building stone. Delivered throughout Connemara. 087-670-6752. 085-705-1367.

Febr uar y 2009

Catering A la Carty Catering: For all your home catering needs contact Joe and Olive Carty. 095-22842. 087-260-5961. Pangur Bán Catering. Award Winning Chef John Walsh is now available for catering private parties. 095-41243.

Computers & IT Supplies Two Dog Computer & Business Solutions. Website design services. Full computer repair services. 095-22194 or 086-404-3125. Office supplies, digital cameras and printers, mobile phones. Vodafone, Meteor, 3 netweors. Galway Rd, Clifden. 095-21911.

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Driver Training

your time, threaten you and the children? If so you may be in an abusive relationship. For free, friendly, confidential advice and support call D.V.R. @ 091-866-740. Clifden Citizens Information Centre provides a free and confidential service to the public. We are in the VEC offices above the Statoil Garage, Galway Rd, Clifden, and can be contacted on 095 22000 and 087-130-1100. Thursday 7pm-8pm and Friday 10:30am- 3:30pm.

John Lyden – Clifden School of Motoring. Road Safety Authority and UK Approved driving instructor. Lessons given in Toyota Yaris Diesel. Also from Mid-February, an Automatic Car. For details and appointments ring 09521170. Wallace School of Motoring. ISM certified instructor. Test routes covered. Dual control car. Car available for test. Nervous beginners welcome. Own car tuition. 086-810-1888.

Items for Sale

Entertainment Station House Theatre, Clifden. Check out our fantastic line-up of cinema and live acts. www.stationhousetheatre. com. 095-30303. Video rental and purchase. Music. Video Games. Video Vault. Main St, Clifden. 095-22033

Fashion Ladies and Mens Clothing.Shoes & Boots. Outerwear. Hehir’s of Clifden. Market St, Clifden. 095-21282. Schu Concept. Bridge St., Clifden. Shoes for women, men & children. Handbags. Hat rental. 095-30606. Massive February Sale. 50% off many lines. Belle Blu. Market St., Clifden. Jewellery, fashion accessories, handbags, cosmetics and more. 095-21321. www.belleblu. com. Schu-It. Ladies, mens and childrens footwear. James St, Westport, Co. Mayo. 098-56738.


Cashel-Connemara Credit Union. Clifden Office at Unit 3, Tom Barry House 095-21101. Cashel Office 095-31128. Sara Horan & Associates Solicitors. Main Street, Oughterard. For a fast and efficient legal service, call us today for an appointment on 091 866992 or email Legal Services Locally.

Groceries & Wine Kavanagh’s SuperValu. The Square, Clifden. Open daily. Free delivery service. 095-21182. Lidl. Galway Rd, Clifden. Clifden Fruit & Veg. Main Street, Clifden. 086-836-5864. Ferguson Wines. Main St., Clifden. Great selection of fine wines both old and New World varieties. Also great selection of Lorge handmade chocolates,French biscuits and various pates and mustards. Contact Helen at 095 22644 or 086 157 4558.

and alleviate depression. Caitríona Nic Ghiollaphadraig, Finisglen, Recess, Connemara, Co. Galway. 095-34664. Email: Web-site: The Hair & Beauty Gallery has MOVED to Bridge Street, Clifden. New Opening Hours: Mon by appt, Tues-Wed 9:30-6, Thurs-Fri 9:30-8, Sat 9:30-5. Manicures/Pedicures: Anna’s Nail Bar. Bridge St., Clifden. 095-30001. Tues-Sat 10-6. Late eve, Thurs & Fri. Reiki/Seichem. Experience the calm and healing energies of this treatment which is drug free and non-invasive. These powerful energies can heal on a mental, emotional, spiritual and physical level. Qualified Reiki/Seichem Master Practitioner, call Yvonne on 086-365-3266. Nicolas Kats, ND, Lic. Ac., is a Naturopathic Doctor and a licensed acupuncturist. Nicolas integrates acupuncture, herbal medicine, diet, supplements, homeopathy and hydrotherapy. To understand health problems he uses three paradigms – modern medicine, naturopathy, and traditional Chinese medicine. Most practitioners of alternative medicine have little or no understanding of modern medicine. Most general practitioners have little or no understanding of natural medicine, such as diet, herbs, supplements and acupuncture. The understanding of both gives him the ability to practice sound complementary medicine. 087-7714710. Ciuin Health & Beauty. Bridge St., Clifden. 095-30205. Caci Microdermabrasion, Danne MediPedi, Dermologica Skin Care, Glominerals, Xen-Tan, Fantasy Tan, Hot Stone Massage, Hand & Foot care, Specialised Waxing. Mon-Wed 9:30-6:30. Thurs/Fri 9-8, Sat 9-4:30. An Bhean Feasa Health Store. Market St., Clifden. Health foods and products. Clifden Holistic Thearpy Centre. 095-30671. Clifden Holistic Centre. Kinesiology, Food Testing, Acupuncture, Bowen Therapy, Massage and Hypnotherapy at An Bhean Fheasa Health Shop, Lr Market St, Clifden.095 30671. Open Mon-Sat 9:30-6 p.m. Ní Ráighne Opticians. Bridge St., Clifden. 095-30995. Eye exams. €35. Medical cards and PRSI welcome. Wide selection of designer frames and sunglasses. Clifden Dental Practice. Clifden Station House Complex. Surgery Hours: 9:30am – 5:30pm. 095-22731.

Fridges & Freezers for Sale: Bosch 4 star no frost upright, 195cm high, 67cm wide, €425 ono. Tricity chest freezer, 82cm high x 159cm wide, €220 ono. Wine cooler fridges for sale, table top height, €150, compact model, €100, perfect condition. 2 piece lounge suite for sale, perfect condition, €300 ono. 086-845-1707. Personalised Candles for weddings, christenings, memorials and anniversaries. Allow 3 weeks for personalisation and delivery. For details call (095) 22101. Two Six Nations Rugby Tickets for Ireland v Italy match in Rome. €120 ono. 086-3855168. Ashton DM55S Solid Top Acoustic Guitar. Built-in Tuner, Engelmann Solid Spruce Top Mahogany Back & Sides, Rosewood Fingerboard Mahogany Neck, w/stand w/o case condition is like new. €150. 085-100-5333. Donkey, 5 month old male, €150. Canvas boat - 18 1/2 ft - Good condition, €700. Two timber car wheels, €100. Cart trailer 5x5, new axle & tyres, €100. Cart axle, €60. Raeburn stove, 8 yr old, very good condition, heats many rads, €600. Old sailing boat, needs repair, €200 – with sails, €500. 087-124-1291. Firebird Boiler. Copper cylinder with immersion. Washing Machine (as new). 087-299-4674.

Office Supplies Office supplies, digital cameras and printers, mobile phones. Vodafone, Meteor, 3 networks. Galway Rd, Clifden. 095-21911.

Pets, Animals & Ponies

Home Furnishings/Appliances Homeware Plus & Shamrock Dry Cleaners. The Square, Clifden. Everything at discount prices! Household products and toiletries. Cards & gifts. Tools. 095-21348. Creative Wood Flooring & Fireplace Warehouse. Kilroe, Inverin, Co. Galway. Factory prices, nationwide delivery. 091-553-995. 087-285-3114. Lydons Carpet & Furniture. Moycullen. 091-555-962.

Photography Services Photos Restored, Rescued & Reprinted. Have your photos digitally scanned, burned to cd, ready for print at Video Vault. Main St, Clifden. Call 095 22033.

Health, Hair & Beauty Connemara Chiropractic. Bridge St. Clifden. 095-21376. The 5 Rhythms® Movement Meditation Practice of Gabrielle Roth is a movement meditation practice- simple, profound, joyful and transforming. The practice helps to free our bodies, still our minds, reduce our stress levels

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Information Services Does your partner? Call you names, constantly criticise you? Control your access to money/phone/car etc? Monitor

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Connemara View Directory

Photography Services

Plant Hire

EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES Full-time Carer required in Letterfrack area. Apply to Box 71, Connemara View Newspaper, Clifden, Co. Galway. Administrative Assistant (CE Scheme): Duties to include general secretarial duties. Candidates should have good computer and administrative skills to include communication skills. Experience essential and knowledge of websites an advantage. Applicants for all CE vacancies must meet specific eligibility criteria. To confirm eligibility, you must enquire at your local FAS office. Please email CV to berniekenny_5@hotmail. com before Feb 14th 2009. Pub staff required for busy Irish pub in Naples, Florida, U.S.A. For details call Paddy Yank McDonagh

(from Roundstone) in USA – 001-239-384-0800, 086-346-9372 in Ireland or email

MJ Trucks. Self-drive hire 13 ton track machine, minidiggers and dumpers. 087-670-6752. 085-705-1367.

Properties Clifden: Rooms to rent in modern, new house in town centre. All mod cons. Reasonable rent. Phone: 086 8377120 Clifden: New 2 bedroomed apartment, with balcony, overlooking Clifden Bay. Fully furnished. Available immediately. Tel: 087-253-8101. Clifden: Attractive 2-bedroomed modern cottage to let 5 minutes from town centre. OFCH. Parking. Available immediately. Contact 086-805-3760. Clifden: 2-bedroomed modern apartment to let, town centre. All mod cons. Recently refurbished to a high standard. Responsible tenants sought. Available immediately. Contact 086-805-3760. For Sale/Bargain Price. 17 Racecourse Lawns (The Spires), Clifden. €259,000. As new, 4 bed semi - 2 en suite, oil fired central heating, extra soundproofing in ceilings fitted at construction stage, oak doors, quality fittings, gardens/small shed, quiet safe estate with large green areas. 5 mins to centre town, hospital, church, school, doctor etc. 086-254-0536 or email: Connemara Coastal Cottages – your local self catering agency requires holiday homes for immediate inclusion on our rental books for the 2009 tourist season. Lots of booking potential, call today for an owners information booklet 095 41844 Book now for your Building Energy Rating certificate which is compulsory for all homes for sale or rent from January 1st 2009 . If you are buying or renting a new house or apartment now, you are entitled to a BER. BERs will be carried out by specially trained BER assessors, registered by Sustainable Energy Ireland (SEI). Call Sinead at Matt O’Sullivan Estate Agents on 095-21066 or e-mail property@mattosullivan. com Listing properties for long term rental.


Connemara View Directory

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Taxi Service

TV/Satellite/Broadband Wireless broadband. Aerial and satellite installation and repair. Peter Keane, Clifden. 095-21827. 087-668-7468.

Vehicles for Sale 04 Citreon Berlingo. Excellent condition, c/l, e/w. 57,000 km. 086-385-5168. VW Passat 1.6 Petrol 06. FSH, 70k, €12500. 087-683-7355.

Websites Website Design: Creative, professional and affordable websites by Cuán Mara Design, Letterfrack, Co. Galway. For pricing and to view portfolio visit www.cuanmaradesign. com. For a competitive quote phone Caroline Herriott on 086-0791918 or email

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Minister Opens New Eagle’s Nest Building There was great celebration, entertainment and an atmosphere of achievement, community and positivity when the new facility at Eagle’s Nest NS was officially opened by Eamon O Cuiv, Minister for Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs on Friday January 30th. Fr. Gerry Burns P.P. began the day’s events by blessing the building and was then joined in the celebration of Mass by Fr. Tony Neville, former Chairperson of the Board of Management and past pupil of Eagle’s Nest, Fr. Raymond Flaherty. Speaking after the mass, School Principal Paul Gannon thanked all those who contributed to the realisation of this

Wedding Services

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very important development for the school; the staff, all the members of the Board of Management past and present who were instrumental in obtaining the funding for the project, the Parents Association, the Dept. of Education, Alan Kaye of ASK Solutions and local contractor Pat Coyne. He also acknowledged the great achievements of his predecessors at the school and expressed his hope that this new building would support and continue the tradition of excellent local primary education in the area. He also emphasised the work of “successive generations of local families behind the school gates, who have supported education and believed in its power and value, and its ability to make us free-thinking educated citizens, who are happy and fulfilled”. Minister Éamon Ó Cuív then spoke and began by congratulating the pupils on their fantastic new facility, and even promised to arrange with the school staff that they would have an evening of no homework to celebrate! He spoke of the importance in communities, of small rural schools like Eagle’s Nest in providing children with the best possible start in life and instilling in them that anything is possible and attainable. “Obviously we are here today to celebrate the opening of the new building, but there is also a much deeper message-we are investing in the future” said the Minister. Musical entertainment throughout the event was provided by the pupils themselves, with accompaniment and direction by Maria Sheridan, Eithne Hannigan and Mary Finn. A sumptuous spread of snacks, cakes and refreshments were then served as all in attendance enjoyed the new top class facility. After the formalities had ended, the children enjoyed a debut performance of a story of St Bridget and a very special pig by Ros and Sean Coyne of Tegolin’s Tales. More music and dance was then performed by the pupils, ensuring that everybody there left with a smile on their face after an uplifting and most enjoyable day. The new building is now available and in use for a whole range of activities and functions. Photo: Minister Eamon O Cuiv performs the cutting of the ribbon to officially open the new building, surrounded by school representatives, the staff, pupils and members of the Board of Eagle’s Nest N.S.

Connemara View Directory

Kylemore Abbey

The landmark Kylemore Abbey is probably one of the most romantic buildings in Connemara, if not in Ireland. It is one of the country’s most easily recognised places, Kylemore Abbey, or Castle as it was known

when it was built in the late 1800’s by Mitchell Henry. Mitchell Henry was born in 1816, the son of a wealthy Manchester merchant. He married Margaret Vaughan, and after visiting the Kylemore area for a number of years to fish and hunt, he decided that he would build his home there. Work began in 1864 to the plans of Samuel Roberts and James Fuller. Can you just imagine the scene; stone and other materials arriving from all around the country, dozens of workmen milling about, and reporters from building and trade magazines visiting the site, reporting on the latest technology which Mitchell Henry insisted on using? There must have been great excitement in the area as men and boys were put to work carrying the loads from Derryinver and Letterfrack, and many other places as well. Mitchell Henry paid well. He believed in fair pay for fair work. I doubt that slackers

Prize winning poster for UN Scoil Mhuire Clifden 5th class student, Leah Dyck of Claddaghduff, (photo above) was the Overall Category Winner in the 9-10 year old age group in the JCI Ireland UN Millennium Poster Competition. Her

or lazy workers were given a second chance, but those that were up to the job were sure of plenty to do. The work on the castle continued until around 1871. Early photographs show a gleaming white building, built of Dalkey granite with its fanciful turrets and mullioned windows, standing out against the dark mountain, with the dark waters of the lake in front. The raised terrace in front shone as brightly, no climbers or plants to soften its appearance. At the same time as this work was taking place, Mitchell Henry was also building his great walled garden, reputed to be the last and most expensive walled garden built in Ireland. It consisted of over six acres, divided into pleasure garden and vegetable and fruit garden. It also contained twenty glasshouses which were heated to specific temperatures depending on what was grown in each. Beyond the walled garden was a semi walled section where trees were cultivated. The grounds of the estate were also planted and paths and avenues were laid out throughout. In keeping with his love of technology and best practice, Mitchell Henry also ran his estate as a model of excellence. The latest ideas in farming, drainage, stock and plants, were all used on the farm and estate. On top of this work, he became more and more involved with politics and represented Galway in Parliament from 1871 to 1884. He was a supporter of Home Rule and tenants rights, but didn’t support Parnell or some aspects of the Land League. To read about his time in Parliament and the time he spent going from meeting to meeting, it was a wonder that he was ever at home. He

had boundless energy and could work all day at the estate then travel to Galway or Ballinasloe and make a speech before moving on to something else, and all this in the age of horse drawn carriages. His family spent a lot of their time at Kylemore but they also had a house in London and would travel from one to the other depending on the season. Margaret died in 1874, which was a devastating blow to Mitchell Henry. He built the beautiful Church, known as the Gothic Church to the east of the castle in her honour. The death of Margaret and other family tragedies seemed to have taken their toll, and slowly he withdrew from the Castle. He decided to sell it in 1903. There was some talk at the time that the Royal Family might buy it as their Irish seat but nothing came of this. The castle was purchased for the Duke and Duchess of Manchester who carried out a lot of work, bringing it up to date and keeping with the fashion of the time. However, they did not have as much luck with it as the Henrys and they were forced to sell. In 1920 the castle was bought by the Benedic-

tines. Their convent in Ypres had been destroyed in the war. From then on, Kylemore Castle became known as Kylemore Abbey. A successful boarding school developed and the Abbey took on a major role in the tourist industry. The restoration of the Gothic Church and the walled garden has brought back some of the glory of Mitchell Henry. No matter what the future holds, Kylemore will always be associated with Connemara. Breandan O Scanaill

winning poster is featured in the UN Calendar 2009.

New Arrival Congratulations to Marlena and Piotr Olchowy of Clifden on the birth of their son Milosz, who was born on December 8th.

Connemara Coast Award The Connemara Coast Hotel have been recognised by the Optimus Mark of Best Practice Award. Photo: (l-r): Aidan Pender of Fáilte Ireland, Ann Downey General Manager and Anne Delany Deputy General Manager of Connemara Coast Hotel and Redmond O’Donoghue, Chairman of Fáilte Ireland.

Connemara View Newspaper

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Healthy Living Learning about Herbs Herbs for your Heart It’s February, love is in the air and Valentine’s Day is coming up. No doubt there will be hearts everywhere – love hearts that is. So whilst our attention is drawn and we’re thinking of hearts, what shape is yours in? Is it lovely and strong and pulsating with life and vigour or are you having a few problems? Is there a history of heart problems within the family that concerns you? Fortunately, despite there being several types of problem associated with the heart and the cardiovascular system, there are herbs which can address the problems and act as preventatives. The cardiovascular system is the term given to the heart, the arteries, veins and capillaries which are the conduits through which blood is transported around the body. When working efficiently, a constant ideal circulation is maintained and the body remains healthy. Diseases that can occur and damage this system are high or low blood pressure, arteriosclerosis, varicose veins, high cholesterol and angina. If problems are ignored, then strokes or heart attacks can result. The main and most relevant herb for the heart is Hawthorn or Cratageus. The Hawthorn has been regarded as a tonic for the heart for centuries. Due to its constituents it is able to improve the pumping action of the heart by increasing blood flow through the coronary arteries. It is the flavenoids within the Hawthorn that is mainly responsible for dilating the conduits which circulate the blood around the body and this effect can be seen in peripheral circulation too, that is, at the extremities of the body. As the functional efficiency of the cardiovascular system is improved, blood pressure is balanced, there is an improvement in circulation, less likelihood of ateriosclerosis and a reduction in the possibility of angina attacks. Hawthorn can also strengthen and stabilise the blood vessels helping to prevent destructive changes taking place. Garlic is amazingly beneficial for the heart as it can help lower high blood pressure and is also full of antioxidants which protect cell membranes from being damaged by free radicals. Garlic is very effective in reducing levels of cholesterol and triglycerides, (fats) in the blood. It is able to reduce the low density lipoproteins while increasing the high density lipoproteins at the same time. This means that cholesterol is more likely to be broken down by the liver and excreted than deposited in tissues. As the HDL to LDL ratio increases, platelet aggregation and plasma viscosity decrease – the blood is thinned – leading to improved blood flow and a reduced tendency for clot formation.

Womens Clinic Venue Change Dr Sophie Faherty has moved premises from Dr John Casey’s Clinic to the Elm Tree Centre in Clifden. Appointments can be arranged for evenings and Saturday mornings. To make an appointment please call 087 222 6783.

Send in your news, views & photos to Page 20

Health Problems & Natural Medicine Q: I have fibrocystic breast. Suggestions? First let me describe this. It is a lumpiness of the breast, often nodules that move freely within the tissue. Typically it is bilateral, and is commonest in the upper outer quadrant of the breast (from nipple to armpit). It may be tender. Tenderness and size change with the menstrual cycle. Menopause stops these changes. It is very common. Let me compare breast cancer. It is a unilateral lumpiness, also typically in the upper outer quadrant. It feels like it is attached to tissue or the chest wall. It is not affected by the menstrual cycle. Please check these descriptions carefully. Which fits? Fibrocystic breast is seen as a problem of estrogen dominance. There is an excess of estradiol, the most aggressive of the estrogens. Estradiol is responsible for breast growth during the cycle, and for proliferation of the lining of the uterus. These tissues are sensitive to estradiol. Too much estradiol causes an excess of growth.There are many ways to moderate estradiol. Herbs are very helpful. I use herbs that moderate estrogen excess and that support progesterone for a more balanced estrogen-progesterone ratio. Since estrogen is cleared from the body during PMT, I use herbs to promote clearance. Herbs that normalize the glands that control If you are suffering from high cholesterol you may want to consider the herb Cynara - Globe Artichoke. This is a bitter herb which works by stimulating the production of bile and reducing cholesterol absorption in the gut. Cholesterol is important for cell membrane structure, bile formation, steroid hormone production and the synthesis of Vitamin D. However, if it is not assimilated correctly, cholesterol deposits build up on the walls of the arteries, blood pressure can increase leading to heart and circulatory problems. Cynara can help reduce cholesterol levels even if high cholesterol is inherited. Another age old remedy for circulatory problems such as varicose veins or haemorrhoids is Aesculus, also known as Horse Chestnut. Varicose veins and haemorrhoids occur when the elasticity of the vein is compromised. Blood then accumulates swelling the veins, and fluid is forced into the surrounding tissue causing swelling or oedema. This can impede circulation yet again, reducing tissue nutrition and leading to varicose eczema. Heavy, tired legs impact on lifestyle and general health making you feel fatigued. As Aesculus is an anti-inflammatory and an astringent, the walls of the veins are toned up making them stronger and swelling is reduced as leaky capillaries are sealed off. Aesculus also inhibits the activity of lysosomal enzymes which can damage the walls of veins and capillaries. Herbs can prevent problems occurring and can also help you to recover from damage to the heart and cardiovascular system. A healthy lifestyle is also important for heart and cardiovascular and health so eat well, organic food where possible, avoid saturated fats and take some exercise. Call in to An Bhean Feasa for any extra information and advice that you may need. Terri Conroy Please note that the information in this article is for information and does not replace medical advice from a registered G.P.

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oestrogen – the hypothalamus and anterior pituitary – may be appropriate. Junk food will make the problem worse; avoid, especially during PMT, the time of oestrogen clearance. Commercially raised chickens and pigs are typically fed large amounts of synthetic oestrogens to speed up growth and sexual maturity. This also applies to eggs and dairy products. Eat only free range or wild meats and their products. If the diet is high in the glycemic index (refined wheat, sugars), reduce your intake of these foods. Ensure that there is adequate dietary fiber, as fiber helps clear oestrogen. Flaxseed (linseed) contains compounds that moderate oestrogen. For freshness you need to grind whole flaxseed (use a coffee grinder). Take 1 heaping teaspoon 1-2 times daily. Studies show that eliminating methylxanthines can have a dramatic effect. Methylxanthines are in coffee, black tea and chocolate. An addiction to or regular consumption of any of these suggests that elimination may indeed help. Obesity is associated with higher oestrogen levels. Obesity is often the consequence of a high glycemic index diet and insufficient activity. Acupuncture can also help. In cases of fibrocystic breast, the diagnosis typically includes some of the following; qi stagnation, excess, damp or phlegm, and spleen deficiency. Nicolas Kats, ND, Lic. Ac, uses acupuncture, herbal medicine, diet and supplements. A US-trained ND, he practices complementary medicine. His clinics are in Clifden (087-7714710) and Galway (091-583260).

Organ Donation A public consultation on systems of consent for the donation of organs for transplantation after death was launched by Mary Harney, T.D., Minister for Health and Children on January 9th. Advertisements have been placed in national and regional newspapers inviting the views of interested parties and the wider public on the merits of ‘opt-in’, ‘opt-out’ and ‘mandated choice’ systems of consent for donation and on how they should operate in practice. The Minister said that she strongly encourages all members of the public and any interest groups to submit their views on this important issue. “Transplantation is an established and very successful treatment which has brought a new lease of life to many people, but its success has meant that demand exceeds supply. Organ donation is a vital lifesaving treatment but it entirely dependent on the generosity of others.” “I would also like to encourage everyone to carry an organ donor card, and most importantly, discuss their decision on organ donation with their loved ones” said the Minister. This consultation on consent for organ donation is part of a broader public consultation in preparing a Human Tissue Bill which will regulate the removal, retention, storage, use and disposal of human tissue from deceased persons and related matters, including the issue of consent for donation of organs for transplantation after death. The three choices are as follows: Option A: Opt –Out. Sometimes called presumed consent. The person is presumed to have consented to donate his or her organs after death unless he or she has specified otherwise. Option B: Opt-in. Sometimes called explicit consent. The person can decide in advance to consent to donate his or her organs, or to nominate someone to make the decision on his/her behalf after death. Where the deceased has not made a decision his or her family may do so. Option C: Mandated choice and required request. People would be required by law to specify whether or not they wish to donate their organs after death. This could be done at specified times such as when applying for a State service or benefit. The provision of the service or benefit would not be dependent on the choice made. If a person is a potential organ donor, “required request” means that the person’s wishes, or their family’s, must be ascertained before death, for example in a hospital A & E Department or Intensive Care Unit. The latest date for receipt of responses is 28th February 2009. Further information on these options is available on the Department’s website or can be requested by telephone (01) 6354732 / 6354452) or by email at

Connemara View Newspaper

Eating for Health This is the first in a series on the benefits of individual vitamins and what foods provide them naturally.

Vitamin A Vitamin A, like all vitamins, is very important to the healthy functioning of one’s body. The facts behind vitamins and their benefits to the human body are essential to make sure you are giving your body the nourishment it needs. Vitamins are indispensable, they’re good for you and your body runs far more efficiently. With a few minor adjustments to your daily food intake you can not only ensure your own health, you can look better as-well… Vitamin A is a fat-soluble vitamin that plays a crucial role in a number of different parts of the body. Vitamin A is highly beneficial to the eyes; it aids vision, especially night vision. It prevents nightblindness, which allows one to see clearly at night. A, aids bone growth and helps reproduction in both males and females, it’s not a sexist vitamin. Cell division and differentation are two of the mostimportant benefits of vitamin A, for it prevents the body from suffering from a vast amount of diseases/viruses. Cell division prevents cancerous cells from infecting healthy cells. Cell differentation is equally important for it’s the process in which cells become part of the brain, muscle, lungs, blood, and other specialized tissue. As important as all that information is, it’s enormously important to give support to one’s body as regularly as possible. To continue the benefits of Vitamins A, and its prevention skills, you should know that it regulates the immune system as well. A, helps the immune system prevent/fight off infections by producing lymphocytes (white blood cells), which destroy viruses and bacteria. So give yourself a fighting chance and keep up on your vitamin A intake. I mentioned earlier that Vitamin A can also make you look better, and I was not lying. Vitamin A helps skin mucous membranes function as a barrier to bacteria and viruses. It aids your eyes as well, as it promotes healthy surface linings for your eyes. It also aids the surfacing of respiratory, urinary, and intestinal tracts, all of which are vital to healthy everyday functioning. Now where do you get Vitamin A? It can come from two different sources, either animals or produce. Vitamin A from

animals is preformed, and is absorbed by the body in the form of retinol. Retinol is one of the most active usable forms of Vitamin A. The highest sources of Vitamin A (Retinol) include: Paprika (1tbsp = 3560 IU, 71% DV) Pepper, red or cayenne (1tbsp = 2185 IU, 44% DV) Chili Powder (1tbsp = 2224 IU, 44% DV) High fiber bran flakes (3/4 cup = 1714 IU, 34% DV) Pumpkin pie (1 piece = 12432 IU, 249% DV) Nutri-Grain bars (1 bar = 2351 IU, 47% DV) Turkey Liver (I liver = 62530 IU, 1251% DV) Chicken Liver (1 ounce = 5987 IU, 81% DV) Pork Liver (1lb = 63712 IU, 1274% DV) Veal/Calf Liver (80g = 56447 IU, 1129% DV) Lamb Liver (1lb = 83810 IU, 1676 % DV) Fresh Eggs (1 cup = 3504 IU, 70%) Butter with/without salt (1 cup = 5673 IU, 113% DV) Fish Oil/Cod Liver Oil (1 cup = 218029 IU, 4361% DV) Margarine (1 cup = 10026 IU, 201% DV) Vitamin A in produce is called provitamin A carotenoid. This has to be made into retinol in the body; this is why Vitamin A from animals is more efficient. Vitamin A from produce isn’t preformed, which means it takes time to absorb into the body. Common provitamin A carotenoids found in plants are beta-carotene, alpha-carotene, and beta-cryptoxanthin. How is that for a mouthful! Beta-carotene is the leader of the group, for it’s most efficiently converted into retinol. To put a picture to those long words, you can get the highest volume of those forms of Vitamin A: Carrots boiled (9 grm =1618 IU 32% DV) Sweet potato baked with skin (I medium size = 21907 IU, 438% DV) Broccoli (1 ounce = 4480 IU, 90% DV) Spinach, frozen (1 cup = 18291 IU, 366% DV) Apricot dehydrated (1 cup = 15076 IU, 302% DV) Cantaloupe (1 cup = 5987 IU, 120% DV) Some signs of Vitamin A deficiency include: Night-blindness, dry scaly skin, increase in infections, and poor growth. If you want little Jimmy to be big and strong, well at-least big, then make sure Vitamin A is on the menu. Now you can see Vitamin A is extremely important, and one must look for signs to ensure they aren’t lacking in the A’s. Unfortunately you couldn’t get A’s through eating in school, but with vitamins you can. Connor McDonough-Flynn For more nutrition information go to www.

Connemara View Newspaper

Driving at Night As the long winter evenings are still ahead of us for another while, here are some simple steps you can take to ensure that you see as well as possible while driving your car at night. Many Irish drivers admit that they find it harder to see clearly when driving after dark, and it’s a fact that more road accidents occur at night than during the day. Common night driving problems include blurred vision, difficulty focusing and glare. The most important thing to remember is to have your eyes examined regularly. Low light levels at night cause the pupil of the eye to become larger and this can accentuate any focusing errors – no matter how minor – causing blur. At night it’s therefore more important than ever to wear a pair of spectacles or contact lenses with an up-todate prescription.

Driving and Age Older people often find night driving particularly stressful. With increasing age, the lens of the eye tends to yellow, reducing vision clarity, but major discomfort from glare can be caused by cataracts – a clouding of the lens. If you have cataracts it is important that you ask your optician or ophthalmologist for advice regarding night time driving.

Anti- Reflection Coating For many people, haloes and reflections around lights and headlamps can make their eyes feel uncomfortable while driving. The most common cause is a dirty windscreen (often on the inside as well as the outside) or scratched or dirty spectacles can be just as bad. Also, reflections from the surface of spectacle lenses can sometimes cause multiple images of lights at night. Anti – reflection coatings are very beneficial for reducing glare at night time.

Tinted Lenses If you do need to wear prescription glasses to drive, never replace them with non-prescription sunglasses when it’s sunny. Never wear dark or tinted glasses for night time driving.

Drivers Eye Wear Some spectacles are more suitable than others for driving, with rimless designs or those with thin rims being particularly suitable as they allow greater all-round vision than those with heavy frames. Glass lenses are rarely used nowadays because of the obvious safety issue. Plastic lenses are lighter and safer. Antireflection coatings can be applied to any lenses at a reasonable cost, helping you to see more clearly and cut down on glare, especially when driving at night.

Eyesight and the Law If you do need to wear spectacles or contact lenses to meet the visual standard for driving, it’s vital to ensure you wear them at all times. This may sound obvious but every day many Irish motorists drive without their glasses because of vanity, or because they have forgotten them, or because they are only driving a short distance. No matter what the reason, if you drive without your glasses and you have been advised by your optician to wear them – you are breaking the law. If you have an accident, when not wearing your spectacles your insurance cover is at risk.

Hints and Tips • Keep your spectacles clean at all times – it is best to keep a cleaning cloth in the car. • It’s sensible to keep a spare pair of spectacles in the car in case you forget them. In many European countries, it is a legal requirement to keep a spare pair of spectacles, and interestingly they have lower incidence of road accidents. • If you normally wear contact lenses, it’s important to have spectacles than you can switch to on long journeys when your eyes get tired. • Alcohol can reduce your vision as well as slowing your reactions. • Some drugs and medications can also reduce or impair your vision – always check with doctor. • Don’t forget that if you pay PRSI or if you have a medical card you are entitled to a free eye examination. Ailbhe ní Ráighne is an Optometrist at Ní Ráighne Opticians, Bridge Street, Clifden, (095) 30995.

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CD Review Mamma Mia! The Soundtrack I was given the CD of the soundtrack from the movie ‘Mamma Mia’ for Christmas. I was thrilled as I had seen the movie and loved the soundtrack. The music was writen by ABBA but the cast of the movie are singing it on the CD. ABBA was a Swedish pop music

St Bridget’s Cross The first day of February saw the annual Feast Day of Ireland’s female patron saint, St Bridget or St Brigid. Bridget was born in A.D. 451 or 452 to a pagan father (Dubthach) and Christian slave mother (Broicsech) just after the time that St. Patrick was preaching in Ireland. There are countless tales and legends of Bridget’s goodness, kindness and compassion which are still learned and remembered by Irish people every year. Her poor mother did her best to raise her well, and a white red-eared cow is said to have provided all the food Brigid needed to grow. This suggests that she was indeed special as white red-eared cows are rare in Ireland. In charge of her father’s dairy farm, she often angered him by giving away much of the produce to the hungry and needy. However, Brigid was strong and determined and continued her charity throughout her entire life, and store always remained miraculously full. Dedicating her life to Christianity, Brigid formed the first religious community for women in Ireland. Her first convent was in Ardagh, and then moved to Kildare. The legend goes that she was refused the land near the oak tree that she loved, so she told the King she’d be happy to accept whatever land her cloak could cover. The King agreed, but when she spread her cloak it miraculously covered all of the Curragh! When St. Brigid died an old woman in A.D. 525, her Sisters kept a fire burning in an enclosure at her Kildare convent. This fire burned for centuries, tended by the Sisters and not burning out until A.D. 1220. St Bridget is a much loved saint all over Ireland and her kindness sets a great example for all Christians. Her symbol is the cross, which she is said to have made to explain the idea of Christianity to a dying pagan chieftain, by explaining about Jesus Christ and his life, death and resurrection. With our step by step guide below, Kid’s View’s Steven Coohill shows you how to make your very own St Bridget’s Cross for your home.

group who became world famous after winning the Eurovision Song Contest in 1974 with their song Waterloo. The name “ABBA” is an acronym formed from the first letters of each of the group member’s given name (Agnetha, Björn, Benny, Anni-Frid). They are one of the world’s best selling bands, having sold over 400 million records worldwide and they still sell two to four million records a year. My favourite song on the CD is ‘Gimme Gimme Gimme’ because it reminds me of my favourite part of the movie when Sam (Pierce Brosnan) , Harry (Colin Firth) and Bill (Stellan Skarsgård) all think they are Sophie (Amanda Seyfried)’s father. This song is sung by the whole Mamma Mia! cast. It is a really fun, happy song. All the songs are enjoyable and well performed and there is a feel good mood through the whole CD from number one all the way through to number 17. It is a good fun dancing CD and since the lyrics are printed inside a booklet inside the case, you can learn the words and sing along. (My mum would probably turn the whole thing into a karaoke evening, but I have my pride!). There is also a hidden track within the CD, so when you buy it, listen out for for it! I think it will become a classic CD and won’t go out of fashion so quickly. After all, ABBA are an old group, long disbanded and yet, they are still incredibly famous! Adéle Biddulph

St Bridget’s Cross The symbol of St Bridget is the St Bridget’s Cross which can be seen in many homes around Ireland. It is traditional to make a cross every year on St Bridget’s Day, the 1st of February. Many children make them at school, but here is a simple guide to make your own. What you need: A small bunch of green rushes (these are plentiful in gardens, fields and roadsides in Connemara, ask around if in doubt.) scissors and 4 elastic bands. How to do it: 1: Take two stalks of rushes and bend them in half, at right angles to each other (see pictures above) 2: Using a third stalk , bend it over the second one, and then a fourth until you have the heart of the cross which you can hold steady with one hand, using the other hand to bend and add stalks . 3: Continue to add bent stalks around the outside of the centre working in a clock wise direction until the centre of the cross is the size you want it to be. 4: Always hold in one hand the end of the branch of the cross you have just added to, in order to keep it secure . 5: When completed, secure the end of each four branches of the cross with elastic bands. Trim the uneven ends with a scissors. So now you have your own St Bridget’s Cross to remember and honour our special patron saint and help her protect the home in which it is displayed!

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Connemara View Newspaper

Happy New Year everyone. The first few weeks of 2009 were great for gardening and I hope that you made the most of it. I have been busy clearing paths and cutting back shrubs and trees. This time of the year gives us a time to start off anew, to turn over a new leaf as it were. Talking about leaves, this Autumn‘s leaf fall seemed to have gone on longer than usual. I have been gathering and bagging leaves for months and there is still more to be raked up. The resulting compost is great and I look forward to using it in general mulch. If the weather remains mostly dry, take advantage of the good days and get ahead of yourself by doing hard landscaping, such as paths, patios, steps, or ponds. Only do these types of jobs if you are skilled, as some if not all of them require building skills. In some of these tasks there can be dangers if the task is not carried out properly so make sure the job is done correctly. There is no reason why you can’t plan these tasks yourself and even do some if not most of the work. I have no major plans for this year, other than repairing a few steps and parts of the paths.

Planting Bulbs Recently I have again been asked about planting bulbs. Normally this would be the wrong time of the year, as most bulbs are planted during the autumn. Possibly due to the bad weather, some people didn’t get

Green Gardening

Get Growing Your Own! Recession or Rethinking? Yes, times are not so good right now, and most likely will get worse. Maybe you have been laid off work or been put on notice or are working less hours per week, or even early retirement. How will you use this time? Just sitting in front of the telly to forget, or are you prepared to look at life a different way? Rethink! Put life in your life by planning to grow your own. Rethink your own backyard. Is there soil available-any kind of soil? Soil gives you food, it gives you life. Do you like fresh vegetables and juicy fruit on your dinner table? Then go out and get a spade, fork, rake, hoe and a pair of garden gloves. That will do for a start! Now in early Spring is the time to get a plot ready. If you have a kind neighbour who keeps chickens, horses, cows etc, and is glad to give you a few bags of this manure; then you are really blessed. But if not, the soil you are preparing for growing is probably virgin soil (that means you never have grown anything before in it), and it should have enough goodness in it for the first year. Some people think if they only grow a patch of lettuces that it will give them the extra nutrition to add to their table. To be fair, lettuce is very tasty; but it is mostly water. To additionally feed yourself and your family you need something more substantial, like potatoes, beans, carrots, onions, cabbages and turnips. Sounds almost like in the old days, when there were no supermarkets and money wasn’t readily available to buy everything. Did your grandparents not live a healthier, longer and more satisfying life? When I speak with some of the older generation, they always reminisce about the big cabbages and spuds

around to planting all their tulips, daffodils or whatever. I would say that it is still fine to plant them but be careful that they are still sound. If they are soft or diseased, I would suggest that you throw them away, but if they feel hard and in good condition, go ahead. The ground might be a bit cold for them, so perhaps they could be grown in pots. I received a late Christmas present of miniature bulbs, which I have planted in window boxes. They should be fine and even if they come up a little later than normal this is no problem. Usually bulbs planted like this will get back into their normal pattern next growing season.

Winter and Spring Flowers There is plenty of colour in the garden at the moment, due to shrubs like Camellia, and Viburnum, both of these have great winter/early spring flowers, as well as having good leaf colour. But there is one invaluable group of plants for this time of the year, and these are the Hellebores. These are often called Christmas rose or even Lenten rose. The common names give a clue as to when they flower, generally between Christmas and Easter. They are also fairly easy to grow, as they are plants of rough places, in their native homes. Often found in shaded woodland or on rocky slopes, they will tolerate a good bit of neglect. They come in a wide range of colours from white to dark red, with many having two colours blended. They prefer a semi shaded position, with soil which does not lose too much moisture, but that is not to say they like waterlogged soil. They can be left pretty much to themselves; new plants can be got they grew, the chickens and turkeys they kept, and nothing was ever wasted. Rethink! How much food are we wasting each year? According to the Organic News, we are throwing away 25 % of the fruit and veggies we buy. Either we buy too much or the stuff doesn’t keep longer than two days, but if you put a little hard work into growing your own and enjoying the taste of it you would not be throwing anything away. I still have Kale, some small winter cabbages and winter broccoli, spinach and leek in the garden to nibble on. In the store there are potatoes, Jerusalem artichokes, oca and other edible tubers to last us through the winter. Also the freezer has some goodies for us. If we fancy strawberries, blackcurrants or raspberries for jam or desserts, we don’t have to go into a shop to buy some. We had a glut of blackcurrants last year so I made a good few bottles of blackcurrant cordial. Rethink! What about the satisfaction you get out of growing your own? Watching it grow and tasting the freshness of your crops? You will eventually say that you’ve never tasted anything like it before: it’s just so good! What about the healthy exercise you get while you are digging, hoeing, weeding and watering? If you have children, share the joy of growing your own with them; make it fun for them; they will love it. Maybe give them a pot with their own strawberry plant to look after or help them to sow some Radish seeds in a tub and let them watch them grow. In the meantime try to push the recession out of your mind and rethink to make your life greener, healthier and tastier. Have an adventure of growing your own! Linda and Vincent Jagobin run Jagür Organic farm in Rossadillisk, Cleggan and an organic produce stall at Clifden Market throughout most of the year.(095) 44855/ 087 691 0234.

Connemara View Newspaper

by division in autumn or very early spring. It is also possible to grow from fresh seed. The powdered root of white hellebore, was used in the past to kill caterpillars. Also in the past these plants were used as a cure for insanity. As the catch phrase goes, ‘don’t try this at home’! There are dozens of varieties to try and once established they will spread around the garden.

Winter Foliage I was driving in County Clare recently and came across an amazing display of winter foliage. Along the roadside, a long bank of cornus, or red and gold barked dogwoods, was planted in what looked like a haphazard manner. But as I looked I realized that there was a swirling pattern being used. These plants are readily available and take easily from cuttings. Before the growth starts, about now, cut the plants back hard, about 5 - 9 cm. This will encourage new growth, and as well as helping the new growth this will also develop the colour. They should grow very well during the summer and when next autumn and winter come around you will be rewarded with the coloured stems again. Of course there are plenty of trees and shrubs which have coloured or ornamental bark, some of the best in my opinion are Acers, and Birchs. A number of Euculyptus and flowering cherries also provide an extra bonus.

Grow your own avocados Someone also asked me about growing avocados. They had some at Christmas time and kept the seeds. This is a great plant to grow and is great to introduce children to gardening. There are two basic ways. First and I think most interesting for children is the following. Use three or four cocktail sticks, or sharpened match sticks. Place the sticks about half way up the seed

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and opposite to each other. Getting a tall and fairly narrow glass or jar, place the seed on top, the rounded part in the glass and the narrow end sticking up, all this held in place by the sticks, then fill the glass to the top. After some time the seed will send out roots, into the water, which you must remember to keep topped up. Then a stem will start to grow and within a few months, you will be able to plant this plant into a pot. It is best kept on a sunny and warm window ledge, but it can be brought out for the summer. The second method is to soak the seed in hot water for a short while, then cut about 1cm off the pointed end. Plant the seed in a small pot of moist potting compost, leaving the cut top just above the surface. Make sure to keep the pot watered. After a few months you should have roots and a shoot. The plants can last for years and can grow fairly tall. If you want to keep it bushy, pinch out the top and you should develop new side shoots.

Starting Seeds This is the time to get seeds started. Seed trays work well. Almost fill the tray with seed and potting compost and smooth the surface. A simple tool can be used for this, - a small block of timber, this will press the soil nice and flat and even. Scatter your seed on top, but make sure that you read and follow the directions as almost all seeds have different requirements. Sprinkle a layer of soil on top and water the tray by standing it in a container of tepid water. Cover with a sheet of glass and paper, check regularly and remove glass and paper as soon as seeds start to sprout. Make sure you mark your seed trays somehow, so that you will remember what seeds are what. Happy Gardening. Breandan O Scanaill

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Now is the winter of our discontent… Connemara has a few key industries on which the majority of the inhabitants rely. These are tourism, agriculture, fishing and, more recently, construction. For many differing reasons; be it the timing of grants, the sale of livestock, poor weather, or low visitor numbers; the first quarter of any year tends to be the tightest when it comes to cashflow. The fact that the global economy appears to be in meltdown makes the beginning of 2009 all the more difficult. There is an old business adage which says “cash is king” and for many business people this is all too painfully true this time of year. Cash flow is a problem in many businesses, and particularly those in the tourism industry know this time of the year is when cash flow and cash levels are at their lowest. A 2006 Clifden Chamber of Commerce business study showed that January and February were by some way the quietest months of the entire year for the majority of businesses in the area. Many businesses will find that they are at the biggest risk of getting into terminal difficulties at this time of the year. In business failures, the last event before closure is that the cash runs out, and even though the business may be profitable and have a reasonably good outlook, if you cannot pay the wages, the taxman or the suppliers, it doesn’t matter how good your future business prospects are, it will be forced to close.

Legal Issues Redundancy

As the recession begins to bite, more and more of us are facing the unpleasant reality of redundancy. For those who remain in work, the fear of redundancy is never far away. This article will address the area of statutory redundancy. The legislation provides a minimum entitlement to a redundancy payment for employees who have a minimum length of service with the employer. Not all employees are entitled to this statutory redundancy payment, even where a redundancy situation exists. If you do qualify for redundancy there are specific redundancy procedures, which employers and employees must follow in order to comply with the legislation. Making an employee redundant should be a last resort and employers and employees should work together to explore all viable alternatives. What is a redundancy? A redundancy situation arises in general where an employee’s job no longer exists and he/she is not replaced except by a member of the employer’s immediate family. Thus, a redundancy must be genuine, and selection for redundancy must be fair, transparent and follow the practice in your work place (for example, last in, last out). You may have grounds for complaint if the manner of your selection for redundancy was unfair. You should be aware that if you make a claim for unfair dismissal, you cannot also claim redundancy. Redundancy is thus work related and not employee related. An employee who is dismissed for any reason other than redundancy (e.g. misconduct, inefficiency) is not entitled to a redundancy payment. He/she may however have a claim for unfair dismissal.

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In most business failures, the final blows are typically delivered by one of three main providers of cash, credit, and working capital. They are the banks, suppliers and the tax man. In the good old days, it may have been possible to buy time from these external parties, but more recently and for a variety of different reasons each of the above are becoming increasingly wary of providing credit. For business owners who had come to rely on the availability of this working capital at this time of year, the dramatic turning off of the cashflow tap may prove to be the final straw that breaks the camel’s back. Banks are obviously feeling the pinch and it would seem that it has become increasingly difficult to borrow funds and overdrafts are coming under more scrutiny. The days of instant access to seemingly unending credit are well over. In fact, until the true scale of the calamitous bad debts from the property boom are fully known, there is unlikely to be a softening of the banks attitudes to lending, particularly in the borderline cases. Suppliers also provide credit to businesses through giving supplies without receiving payment up front. This credit line allowed many businesses to stock the shelves without needing cash to buy the stock in advance. Often the supplier might only get paid when the stock was actually sold to the end customer. Clearly this arrangement suits businesses, but what is increasingly seen to be happening now is that suppliers, many already stung by bad debts are significantly tightening up on their credit terms. This means the suppliers are demanding more prompt payment for their goods and in some

extreme cases are now switching to cash on delivery. This has a knock on effect on many of the small Connemara businesses who had come to rely on favourable credit terms from suppliers to see them through the lean winter times. The tax man also provides credit by allowing businesses to collect taxes (payroll, VAT etc) from the end customer on sales, and this only has to be returned to Revenue after every few months. Again, the Revenue could be tardy in picking up on businesses that failed to file returns on time, and often didn’t follow up on the late filers for months on end. Also, we are increasingly seeing that due to the difficulties in the state finances, Revenue are becoming more active in the pursuit of back taxes and timely tax payments. In the future we may expect to see a more aggressive stance being taken by Revenue for correct enforcement of timely tax payment. These unauthorised borrowings by businesses in the wintertime by delaying tax payments are likely in the future to be met with increasing interest and penalties by Revenue with a view to ensuring that affairs are kept more up to date. If cashflow is critical and your normal sources of credit are not available, then what can you do? Another business axiom often used is that the definition of stupidity is doing the same thing over and over but expecting a different result! What this means is you cannot hope to get out of your current difficulties by replicating the business decisions that got you into trouble in the first place. The first step

is to identify the problem and then develop a business plan and cash flow projection to map a way out of the difficulty (if possible). Knowledge is key to assessing the extent of the problem, and the requirement to solve the problem, and you may find banks are happy to help where they see a reasonable effort being made to turn things around. Also, discuss with suppliers regarding terms. They will understand and may be willing to help share the cash flow burden, particularly if you are willing to put definitive payment plans in place going forward. Finally, if you have tax issues, don’t ignore them. Revenue have power to send any outstanding debt to the Revenue Sheriff for collection and this can result in the confiscation of stock or equipment in cases where the problem has been left unattended for too long. Remember this confiscation can take place without a court order so there is no legal loophole available here. Businesses should avoid the enforcement proceedings at all costs. Again, Revenue can be reasonable where genuine attempts are made by a person to rectify the matter in a reasonable timeframe. Talk to your professional advisors, your bank, your accountant or business organisations. Don’t wait until it all comes to a head as this leaves no time to work out any possible solutions. Head in the sand strategies only work for ostriches!

Who decides if there is a Redundancy? It is up to the employer concerned in the first instance to determine whether or not there is in fact a redundancy situation. Disputes in this regard can be referred to the Employment Appeals Tribunal (EAT) for adjudication. If you are out on maternity leave, you cannot be issued with a Redundancy notice. How much redundancy payment am I entitled to? An employee is entitled to two weeks pay for every year of service, with a bonus week added on, subject to a maximum ceiling on gross weekly pay (currently €600). The Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment, which administers the Scheme, will then pay the employer a 60% rebate. Where the employer is unable or unwilling to pay the lump sum, the Department steps in and pays the amount from the Social Insurance Fund (SIF). What is a Voluntary Redundancy? Voluntary redundancy occurs when an employer, faced with a situation where he requires a smaller work force, asks for volunteers for redundancy. The people who then volunteer for redundancy are, if they fulfill the normal conditions, eligible for statutory redundancy. Of course, once again, there must be a genuine redundancy situation in the first place. How offers or acceptance of other work affect a redundancy lump-sum entitlement. Offers of other work or of re-engagement by the employer or agreed absences from work may affect an employee’s position in regard to a redundancy lump-sum payment. What are the criteria that I must satisfy? • To be eligible for a statutory redundancy payment, you must satisfy the following requirements: You must be aged 16 or over. There is no upper age limit. • You must be in employment that is insur-

able under the Social Welfare Acts. Fulltime employees must be paying Class A PRSI. (This insurability requirement does not apply to part-time workers). • You must have worked continuously for your employer for at least 104 weeks (2 years). Certain absences from work do not break continuity. These include:- maternity leave, adoptive leave, parental leave or carer’s leave, off work through illness, agreed absence, holidays or lay off. What is the situation for apprentices, agency workers and part-time workers? If you are an apprentice, the same rules apply to you and you may qualify for redundancy payment, unless you are dismissed within one month after the end of your apprenticeship. Agency employees and part-time workers are also protected under redundancy legislation. If the employment agency pays the wages, it is responsible for paying the statutory redundancy payment. They must still meet the requirement for 2 years’ continuous service as described above. What period of notice am I entitled to? If you have worked for your employer for between: (i) 2 and 5 years-notice of 2 weeks. (ii) 5 and 10 years-notice of 4 weeks. (iii) 10 and 15 years-notice of 6 weeks. (iv) More than 15 years-notice of 8 weeks. You can also be paid in lieu of notice. Have I to pay income tax on my statutory redundancy payment? No. However, clearance should be obtained from the Revenue Commissioners. Non-statutory Redundancy payments, including payment in lieu of notice, are taxable but may be subject to a more favourable tax treatment than normal income. What does an employer do if he/she needs to make an employee redundant? He/she must issue the relevant notice of

redundancy to the employee (Part A of Form RP50). He/she must also give minimum notice-between 2 and 8 weeks depending on the length of continuous service. When the relevant notice period has expired, and the employee is leaving, part B of Form RP50 is completed and the lump sum payment must be paid over to the employee. The employer must apply for the 60% rebate within six months. Redundancy legislation is quite technical and stilted. Furthermore, the procedures that need to be followed are rather formal. The circumstances of each redundancy will differ. It is thus important to familiarize oneself with one’s obligations and rights beforehand. In this regard, the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment, ( the Revenue Commissioners (www.revenue. ie) and Citizen Advice ( websites are all very informative.

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Declan Mannion can be contacted at Mannion Lochrin & Co, Chartered Accountants, Clifden, Co. Galway. 095 30030. E-mail declan@

This article has attempted to give a brief outline of what is involved in redundancy situations. It is thus not meant to be exhaustive and advice should be sought if one finds oneself facing redundancy - either as an employer or as an employee. Being made redundant is very catastrophic for an employee and indeed expensive for the employer. In light of the negative impact it has on the employee, it should really be the last option exercised. There may be viable alternatives to redundancy such as agreed lengthy and unpaid absences from work, job sharing, reduced working hours and parttime work. In smaller firms, it should be possible to implement alternatives such as these without having to embark on a major restructure. Sara Horan, Solicitor, Oughterard, Co. Galway. Telephone: 091 866992. Email:

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PC Tips & Tricks Make Your Own Website

In this challenging economic climate many Connemara businesses will be trying to mitigate the downturn by considering a website to help their business. A website is often the first point of contact for potential customers, as most people will either know where to find a site, or how to look for it with search engines. It’s like a business card that can inform, make sales, or take bookings. So, why do YOU need a website? Is it a tool to inform potential customers as to your offerings, i.e. an Informational Website, or indeed is it to allow you to sell your goods or services to the end-user, i.e. a Commercial Website (also called an eCommerce Site)? An Informational Website is designed to attract people browsing to the services being offered, with simple ways to request further information, displaying examples of products/ services (a portfolio), customer feedback (positive, of course!), and a simple way to get in touch. A Commercial, or eCommerce Website will be like many you will have already seen: it will allow you to search for and browse products, select items to put in a ‘Shopping Basket’, and then safely enter address and payment details. Good eCommerce Websites will have high-grade encryption to keep your data safe, and often will post any transactions straight to your bank account.

a picture that you have saved. If you want to look for background options, try, for free images and “wallpapers” for websites. To save a background from iconbazaar, you’ll need to first click on the background you like. When the background comes up on a new screen, RIGHT click on the background and save it to your desktop. You can save it to another location on your computer, but you’ll need to remember where you saved it so you can eventually upload it to your website. To insert a picture on your website, click on “Insert” at the top of your Word screen, then select either “Clip art” if you want to use something from Word’s gallery, or click on “from File.” You can then select a picture you have saved to your computer, or a picture you got from a site like Iconbazaar. 9. You’ll need to know how to make Links on your page. You first need to create more than one page in your website and save them. Make sure you save your pages as WEBSITES. To do that you will need to go up to “file” and down to “save as.” When the save window opens, you will need to look at the bottom of that window and select “website.” 10. Make sure you save your page using ONE WORD!!! This is very important. If you name your page “page one” it has to be joined up, “pageone”. This is critical!!!! 11. To make a link, highlight the word you want to use as a linking word. Then go to the linking tool in your button bar at the top of your screen, a globe with a chain link at the bottom. Click on that icon. You’ll get a dialog box similar to the one below.

Where do you go from here? Creating a website can be a simple as using Microsoft Word to create pages, and for a really straightforward website, this may suffice. For more sophisticated sites, there are many development tools that you can use, such as Joomla, ZenCart or Wordpress. Be aware that you may need to be conversant with programming and mark-up languages such as PHP and HTML.

Make your own website in Word: 1. Open Word through the Start menu at the bottom right of your screen. 2. If a blank Word page does not come up, then click on the white paper icon in your button bar, at the far left. 3. In the middle of your button bar you will see the font size. You’ll be able to scroll down to select larger fonts. You may select a font size from 24 to 48. 4. You may also select your font style. BUT you should select only the standard fonts—Arial, Verdana, Times. Not all computers can read the other fonts. 5. Type the Header for your page. It could be something like “Welcome to My Website”. 6. You can highlight this and make it bold or italic, or put it in a different colour by going to the drawing button bar at the bottom of your screen. (If you don’t see the drawing button bar, go to View at the top of your page and click on Toolbars. Click on “Drawing.”) At the bottom of your screen is the letter “A.” Click on the little arrow next to the letter and you will open up your colour selections. 7. If you want to create a background colour or some other background effect, click on Format at the top of your screen, then click on Background. You will see a colour chart, but you can also click on “Fill Effects” and view other background options. 8. If you want to use a picture for your background, then click on the “picture” tab. You will be able to browse for

I have recently been told that the company I work for is to close down. Where do I stand in relation to redundancy and annual leave I have not taken? In a redundancy situation, your employer must pay the redundancy lump sum due to you and give you a “Redundancy Certificate” - section B of form RP50. If your employer has not given you your redundancy lump sum you may apply for this on form RP77 which is available from Clifden Citizens Information Centre. If your employer continues to refuse to pay redundancy, but

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12. Click on “file” in that dialog box. 13. You can search for a file you have created on your computer by browsing through the various directories. You can do that by clicking on the arrow at the top of that window. People often save web files to their desktop because it is generally easier to find things on the desktop than in My Documents. 14. Continue to make pages and link those pages. Make sure you save your work periodically. Once you have your site ready, all you need is to select a ‘hosting company’ for the website to “live” on, such as,, or Clifden’s own (087 4129321). They will help you to register a .com or .ie and upload your website. That’s it in a nutshell. Next month we’ll look at how to develop a website using more sophisticated tools. Two Dog Computer & Business Solutions offers professional web services in Clifden. If you have any questions relating to web design or internet marketing, we would be more than happy to answer them for you. Phone John on 095 22194/086 404 3125, or email has signed a copy of form RP50, you can apply for payment from the Social Insurance Fund (SIF). If you have not been given form RP50 or your redundancy payment, you can apply to the Employment Appeals Tribunal. If successful, you should ask your employer again for payment. In the event of another refusal you can apply to the SIF for payment. If you are leaving your job or are being made redundant, you are entitled to receive a payment for annual leave which you have earned but not taken. The ending of employment is the only situation where it is legal to pay an employee instead of giving annual leave. If your employment stops during the week ending on the day before a public holiday and you have worked for your employer for the previous 4 weeks, you should receive an additional day’s pay for the public holiday. This also

Febr uar y 2009

Help For Businesses: Galway County & City Enterprise Board

Starting and building a small business can be a daunting undertaking. Many Connemara businesses over the years have benefited from bringing their plans to the Galway County & City Enterprise Board who are at all times willing and anxious to explore new ideas with potential to establish sustainable businesses. They provide a wide range of services and act as a first stop shop for budding entrepreneurs and existing businesses hoping to expand or develop new markets. The Enterprise Board has as a priority the creation of an enterprise culture and the growth of economic development. High among the services provided by the Enterprise Board are a dedicated mentoring service and the provision of specific training in small business management. The Board provides advice and capital grants to eligible businesses. They also work actively with the schools in providing basic business education and support towards participation in the National Enterprise Awards Scheme. The GCCEB are also prepared, subject to sufficient numbers being interested, to provide its unique training courses on location in the region. Additionally, they can in certain circumstances provide assistance by way of Feasibility Study Grant to enable the promoter advance their proposal. To access the Board’s services it is generally required that a basic business plan be prepared. This business plan should be based on the recognised five building blocks namely: • What are you proposing to do and why do you feel it should be successful? • Where are you going to do it and are there any special requirements? Such as planning permission, three phase power or water discharge licenses etc. • Who is going to do it? In other words what is the employment, are there any special training needs. • What is it going to cost? e.g. equipment, building modifications etc. • Who is going to buy the product or service? i.e. What is your target market? The Galway County & City Enterprise Board has a very informative website at and can be contacted at its office at Woodquay Court, Woodquay, Galway. Telephone: 091-565269 or by Fax: 091-565384. The CEO of Galway County & City Enterprise Board Ltd. is Charles P. Lynch and Assistant CEO is Therese Connaire. applies to part-time employees who have established a right to the public holiday by working at least 40 hours in the previous 5 weeks. The statutory redundancy payment is a lump-sum payment based on the pay of the employee. All eligible employees are entitled to two weeks’ pay (up to a maximum of €600 per week or €31,200 per year) for every year of service, regardless of age, and one further week’s pay. Further information is available from Clifden Citizens Information Centre, which provides a free and confidential service to the public. Tel:095 22000 & 087 1301100 / Email: Address: c/o VEC Office, 4/5 Statoil Apartments, Galway Road, Clifden Open Thursday 7pm to 8pm, Friday 10:30am to 3:30pm. Citizens Information is also available online at & from the Citizens Information Phone Service, Lo-Call 1890 777 121.

Page 25

Connemara Properties Church Hill, Clifden This three bed property is located at the top of Churchill just a quick walk from the centre of Clifden Town. The property enjoys large off street parking to the front and a large private yard to the rear. The accommodation comprises living room/dining room, shower room, kitchen, upstairs master bedroom ensuite, bathroom and two other bedrooms. Price: €240,000. Matt O’Sullivan Auctioneers, The Square, Clifden (095) 21066 e-mail

Inis Turbot A beautifully renovated traditional cottage on the stunning island retreat of Inis Turbot. Entrance hall, living/dining, 2 bed, bathroom and kitchen. The island is a 10 minute boat ride from the mainland and from the cottage there are uninterrupted views of the Atlantic Ocean & Slyne Head. Asking Price €450,000. Sherry Fitzgerald Kavanagh, Main St, Clifden (095) 21888.

Planning Applications December & January

09/12/08 083611 - McAleer, Hugh, Claddaghduff. For the construction of a serviced dwelling with a septic tank, an effluent treatment system, a percolation area and a garage/shed (gross floor space 140sqm). 11/12/08 083652 – Schley, R, Clifden. For office at Hulk Street, Clifden (gross floor space 79sqm). 12/12/08 083664 - Comhar Chuigeal Teo, Lettermullen. Chun clos spraoi a thogail. 12/12/08 083655 - Grimes, Matt & Ann, Gowlan West. For modifications to the already existing dwelling house on site. Modifications will include: provision of a new pitched roof over the existing flat roofed extension, modifications to elevations including reconfiguration and replacement of windows and doors, removal of the existing 7.6m.sq. storage shed to the side of the dwelling, construction of a new 36.sq garage to the north east of the dwelling and all ancillary site works and services (gross floor space 133.2sqm retained, 37.2sqm proposed). 16/12/08 083688 - Mannion, Bernard, Ardbear. To construct 4 no. two storey 3 bedroomed detached houses, for demolition of existing house, for redevelopment of existing entrance road and for sewage treatment system and percolation area (gross floor space 722.60sqm).

Page 26

18/12/08 083830 - O’Leary, Larry, Tully. To construct a dwelling house, sewage treatment plant, percolation area nad ancillary services (gross floor space 218sqm). 18/12/08 083743 - Gibbons, Michael, Clifden. To retain (a) revised front elevation (b) new rear boiler house in relation to planning ref no. 03/3152 granted on the 23/02/04 (gross floor space 14.5sqm). 22/12/08 083787 - Prendergast, John, Cashel. For retention of alterations to existing dwelling house and revised site boundaries together with full permission for a new sewage treatment system Pl. Ref. No. 96/3022 (Gross floor area 285.3 sqm). 23/12/08 083809 - Clarke, Val, Rosmuc. Chun teach ata doite a leagan agus teach eile nua, garaiste agus coras searachais a thogail (Gross floor area House 223.61 sqm Garage 33.57 sqm). 31/12/08 083828 - O Gabhain, Brendan, Maumeen. To construct a serviced dwellinghosue, septic tank, percolation area with secondary treatment plant. 13/01/09 0925 - Paul McNulty & Trease Ni Chonghaile, Lettermullen. Chun athruithe agus sineadh a dheanamh ar aitreabh, le dabhach coireala nua agus achar siothlaithe chomh maith le hoibreacha laithreain (Gross floor area 56.53 sqm). 21/01/09 0964 - O’Donohoe, James, Ballyconneely. To construct a single storey extension to the north west side of the existing dwelling (gross floor space 22sqm). 22/01/09 0976 - Walsh, Cathal, Clifden. For demolition of existing vacant derelict sheds on Market Hill Lane to the rear of Walsh’s Emporium on Market Street (formerly a bakery) and permission to construct commercial unit at ground floor, comprising 2 no. self storage units and permission for 1 no. apartment at 1st and 2nd floor (gross floor space 193.58sqm). 22/01/09 0979 - Keaney, John, Glinsk. For retention of existing dwelling house, domestic garage and effluent treatment plant (gross floor space 129sqm). 28/01/09 09106 - Needham, Maurice, Cleggan. To construct an agricultural shed for the purpose of housing livestock, together with associated effluent storage tank (Gross floor area 122 sqm). 30/01/09 09142 - Mulkerrins, Sean, Letterard. Chun teach conaithe, garaiste agus coras searachais a thogail (gross floor space 186sqm). Source:

Febr uar y 2009

Failte Ireland Annual Industry Briefing The annual tourism industry briefing by Failte Ireland took place in Galway on January 21st. Various speakers from both Tourism Ireland and Failte Ireland urged the tourism sector to make sure their websites and online services were up to date, and to ensure that the quality of the service, and crucially value that they offered to visitors was attractive. Fáilte plans an aggressive marketing campaign to persuade more Irish people to take a break at home this year. They will invest almost €6 million in the form of direct supports and advice for tourism enterprises including many small and medium enterprises in the Western region. “Connemara - Wild at Heart”won “Best Tourism Brochure” at the 12th Annual Hospitality Sales and Marketing Association International Awards (HSMAI) last week. Local General Manager for Fáilte Ireland in the West, Ms Fiona Monaghan outlined positive achievements in the Connemara area in 2008 as the Killary Coastal Looped Walk, the Connemarathon, and Leenane Walking Festival. A Sailing Event is also in the process of development in the Killary to capitalise on the success of the Leenane Walking Festival. Plans for 2009 include the development of Clifden as a cycling hub and the rerouting of parts of the Western Way. In the concluding questions and answers session, Carmel Murray of Clifden raised the issue of the opening hours of the Clifden Tourist Office, expressing that in her view, it opened too late and closed too early in the season, and being closed for lunch meant that many tourists had no direction or assistance on arrival to Clifden. The most dominant message of the night that all speakers expressed was that Failte Ireland will continue to work with tourism operators.

A Happy Ending for Happy the Dog A much loved family pet had a close call lately, having gone missing in the Cleggan area for almost a week in freezing conditions. Happy, a female collie cross, was re-homed from the GSPCA by Geraldine Ludden and her family 7 years ago and went missing on Sunday January 3rd. After neighbours and friends had been alerted to watch out for her, an interesting story emerged. Marty Coyne heard a crying and wailing coming from a small island, which in a strange coincidence is known as Dog Island. As unlikely as it seemed, all on the hunt for Happy started to think that she might be stuck on the island. At first light on Thursday morning Geraldine went down to the shore nearest the island, where the tide was out and called and whistled. Sure enough she eventually saw Happy, making her way in, having been stranded for 5 nights without food or fresh water. After warming up and a good dinner, Happy the lucky dog is now back to herself and Geraldine and her family would like to thank Marty and Geraldine Coyne and all their friends and neighbours who helped them search.

Connemara View Newspaper

C o n s u m er Watch dog

Connemara Community Radio Weekly Schedule

Broadcasting 11 am to 9 pm each day on 87.8 FM & 106.1 FM Weather Forecast and Community Notices at 3 pm, 4 pm and 8 pm. Monday: 11am-12 Noon: Magazine Pro-

Death Notices Joe Coyne, Cluid, Clifden & Calla, Roundstone Kaye Cunningham (nee Doyle), Co. Kilkenny & Oughterard John Folan, Derrygimla, Ballyconneely Frank Gibbons, Glengowla, Oughterard, Galway Michael Gibbons, Killawalla, Co. Mayo. Brother of Jimmy Gibbons, Clifden. Eileen Hynes, Canal Stage, Ballinafad John Joyce ( John Tom Vickle), Caher, Recess & Oilean West Joseph ( Joe) Joyce, England & formerly of Church Hill, Clifden Paddy Kelly, formerly of Cashel Bernard Kilkenny, Gurteen, Galway and Westport Rd, Clifden Gerard Mannion, Recess Marty McLoughlin, England & formerly of Derryherbert, Letterfrack Michael Mullen, Dohulla, Ballyconneely Bridget O’Shaughnessy (nee Cunnane), formerly Rosscahill, & Inishbofin Helena Springfield (nee King) - London, England & Cleggan The Connemara View would like to extend sympathies to the family and friends of the deceased. This list is compiled from various sources and we apologise for any errors or omissions.

Connemara View Newspaper 7,000 copies distributed monthly throughout Connemara 095-22888/087-290-9351 Editor-in-Chief/Publisher: Ellen McDonough News Editor: Catherine Pryce Ad Sales/Writer: Connor McDonough-Flynn Distribution Mgr: John Dunne Graphic Design/Layout/Features: Marie-Noelle Biddulph KidsView Junior Editor: Steven Coohill Contributors: John Amenhauser, Gareth Anthony, Anne-Marie Bennett, Adele Biddulph, Tom Broderick, John Claró, Terri Conroy, Colleen Curran, Bridie Davis, Richard de Stacpoole, Paul Faherty, Kevin Gavin, Paul Gannon, Leo Hallissey, Rosemary Hanley, Lol Hardiman, Sean Heanue, Michele Hehir, Sara Horan, Bernie Jeff ries, Nick Kats, Patricia Keane, Sean Mac Donncha, Declan Mannion, Marie Mannion, Peggy Mannion, Iain McDonald, Rosie McGurran,Kevin O’Connor, John O’Neill, Breandan O’Scanaill, Donal O’Scanaill, Maurice O’Scanaill, Margaret Sheehan, Thomas Welby, Declan Weir, Tricia Wilder, Caroline Wright, Paul Wright. plus many local schools, groups & organisations.

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Letter to the Editor 2008 I have something to tell you I hope you can wait, It’s about the last year, Two thousand and eight. The tiger has fled, The wolf ’s at the door , Nothing’s safe now The banks are on the floor. It’s not all bad news The airport’s underway, Quiet Church Hill now is gone, It’s the new motorway. David Griffin’s on the mend, He is out and about, Mairtin’s on the radio, Wednesday night, give him a shout. We said goodbye to Willie, To Chrissie farewell, Peter Carroll, Mary Kate Passed on as well. Celebrations in Roundstone, New hall, new pier, Big party for Ann and Richard All round a good year. Eva is Queen, Gorham’s are champs Well deserved Kingstown Dana, Truly all winners, Like Barack Obama. Arts week was hectic We all gave a hand, Border Collies, Sean Nos Dancing, The Mike Denver Band. Politically speaking who will go, Josie, Eileen, P.K. or Eamonn will run, Maybe Mary Carey, Could be the lucky one. Lidl has opened, Bargain store they all say, More shoppers in town, Now Aldi on the way. Annie was class, It topped off the year, Some more of that, please Is what we all hear. I would just like to say To finish my story, That all on the square Will really miss Rory. Sean Heanue, Clifden

Febr uar y 2009

gramme with Heather Heanue. 12-4pm: Repeat of previous evenings broadcast. 4-5pm: Listen Here with Pete Ball. 5.05-6pm: Hooked on Music with John Duane. 6- 7pm: Alternative Weeks - As Gaeilge with Caitriona Nic Ghiollaphadraig OR Hayday with Sinead Mannion & Bobbi O Regan. 7-8pm: Talk Sportwith Vivian Cotter. 8pm: Roundstone Report with Richard de Stacpoole and Anne Conneely. 8.15-9pm: Ann’s Mixed Bag with Ann Conneely. Tuesday: 11am-12 Noon: Magazine Programme with Pat Walshe. 12-4pm: Repeat of previous evenings broadcast. 4-5pm: Gateway Hour with various presenters. 5.05-6pm: Jack’s Spot with Jack Tomlinson. 6- 7pm: Live with John Dunne. 7-8pm: Community Matters with Pat O’Toole. 8pm: Cashel Report with Bernard Lee. 8.30-9pm: Classical Half Hour with Pat O’Toole. Wednesday: 11am-12 Noon: Magazine Programme. 12-4pm: Repeat of previous evenings broadcast. 4-5pm: Gateway Hour. 5.05-6pm: Inishbofin Live from Inishbofin Studio. 6- 7pm: My Kind of Music with Martin Conroy. 7-8pm: Lift the Latch with Michael O’ Neill and Helen King. 8pm: Clifden Report with Breandan O’Scanaill. 8.15-9pm: Music with Pat Keaney. Thursday: 11am-12 Noon: Magazine Programme with Cathy Keane and Brendan O’Malley. 12-4pm: Repeat of previous evenings broadcast. 4-5pm: Gateway Hour with Kathleen O’Brien. 5.05-6pm: Fáilte with Mary Corbett Joyce. 6- 7pm: Take it Easy with Michael O’Toole. 7-8pm: The Great Outdoors with Breandan O’Scanaill. 8 pm: Cleggan Claddaghduff Report with Mary Gordon O’Toole. 8.15-9pm: African Scene with Sam & Beatrice. Friday: 11am-12 Noon: Magazine Programme with Samantha Heanue & Pricilla Diamond. 12-4pm: Repeat of previous evenings broadcast. 4-5pm: Gateway Hour with Tonya Ni Chuirínn. 5.05-6pm: The Friday Feeling with Margaret Sheehan. 6- 7pm: It’s The Weekend with Cliona Sheehan and Liam Joyce. 7-8pm: Injury Time with Brendan Ridge. 8pm: Ballyconneely Report with John O’ Malley. 8.15-9pm: American Country with Brendan Ridge. Saturday: 1am-12 Noon: Monkeying Around with Heather Kearney. 12-4pm: Repeat of previous evenings broadcast. 4-5pm: Gateway Hour with Tonya Ni Chuirrín. 5.05-6pm: Pretty Good Day so Far! with Sean Halpenny. 6- 7pm: Blue Highways with Lol Hardiman. 7-9 pm: Music Spectacular Alternative Weeks - Shelter from the Storm with Dave O’ Halloran OR Coast to Coast with Paul Phelan. Sunday: 10-11am: Sounds a Bit Irish with Eamonn McLoughlin. 11am-12noon: Mass from Clifden. 12-4pm: Repeat of previous evenings broadcast. 4-5pm: Listen Here with Pete Ball. 5.05-6pm: Lyrical Allsorts with Linda O’Malley. 6- 7pm: Footappin’ Time with Tom Mongan. 7-8pm: Senior Side of the Street with Josephine De Courcey. 8pm: Ballinakill Report with Paddy Gannon. 8.15-9pm: Decades of Hits with Michael Coyne.

Page 27

Bogman 46

Bogman 46 Clues Across

1. Being frazzled, Marciano could have got it in the belly. (8) 6. With such a complex tune, go for arrangement for mouth-organ. (6) 9. Strangely, what better tool is there to offset those cold nights? (3,5,6) 10. Keep apart the broken Easter egg. (9) 11. In short, cheese comes at the start of the feast. (5) 12. Stroll on it by the sea when asleep and bothered? (9) 15. It is entirely appropriate to have such attacks of nerves. (4) 16. On the face of it, improper use of cane spoils many a teenager’s life. (4) 18. You could meet none cuter if sorted out. (8) 21. Dine about ten in Rome, to find what’s in the book. (5) 22. During turbulent Avon trip, I suffer the loss of it. (9) 25. Story of a river in spate, told from the bank. (8,7) 26. Fat and unhealthy dog upset, being in such dirty accommodation. (6) 27. Rm or Te - both being welcome to those in form. (4-4)

Bogman 46 Clues Down

2. Those who attain it have ice, crushed. (7) 3. I go out of retail complex looking for change. (5) 4. How refreshing it is to have somehow earned a go, in glasses. (9) 5. How refreshing it is to eat dice, diced, in glasses. (4,3) 6. .. but coming back up east, travel under ground. (4) 7. What successful trawler-men make? (3,6) 8. The meaning of this clue couldn’t be more plain. (7) 13. With soft music at the start, alluded to this, by choice. (9)

Connemara Crossword 52

Enter crossword answers into a draw of correct answers for a voucher for Homeware Plus in Clifden by February 25th. December Crossword Winners

Crossword Across

29. Casserole from the west (4) 30. Plant exterminator (10)

Crossword Down

1. Tepid (4) 2. Christmas show (9) 3. Synthetic fabric (5) 4. Ahead (7) 5. Jubilation (7) 7. Open sore (5) 8. Mail centre (4, 6) 9. Available separately from menu (1, 2, 5) 14. “The happiest time of your life” (10) 16. Common injury from impact (8)

18. Well informed footballer is this (2, 3, 4) 20. Rubbish (7) 21. Tranquillized (7) 23. Adhesive (5) 25. African mammal related to giraffe (5) 26. Support grizzly (4)


1. Windscreen rubber (5, 5) 6. Discard (4) 10. Watery (5) 11. Famous rugby team (3, 6) 12. Injuring, hurtful (8) 13. Collectable (5) 15. Natter (4, 3) 17. Unplug (4, 3) 19. Aperture (7) 21. Doubting Thomas (7) 22. Collar part (5) 24. Rudolph the reindeer is this (3, 5) 27. Helper (9) 28. Decrease (5)

Bogman 45 Lynne Mather, Shillelagh, Co. Wicklow Connemara Crossword 51 Orla Sealy Phelan, Moyard See answers right

Page 28

Febr uar y 2009

14. It’s ambiguous when company six turns up in an identical condition. (9) 17. With no duct, I arrange for somewhere else to pass through. (7) 19. Provide money when internal war-damage leads to a cleaning up in transport (3-4) 20. There’s nothing in the duty list to say he’s on call first thing in the morning. (7) 23. Be stretched around north and torment one because of it. (5) 24. Might this be a just reason for destroying Lyon? (4)

What Do You Know? Quiz 5 The reward for 12 correct answers is now up to €50. Geography: What country has Europe’s second largest river and what is it called? History: How many and which of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World still exist? Sports: At the 2006 IAAF World Indoor Championships, she won the gold medal for 60m hurdles, becoming the first Irish woman to win an indoor world athletics championship. Who is she? Math: In which century did mathematicians first use plus and minus signs? Science: Matter that does not enter chemical reactions is described as what? Cooking: Turkish coffee is made with equal amounts of what two ingredients? General Knowledge: Since the beginning of the modern Olympic Games, only two countries have competed in every single one. Who are they? Politics: What king of Saudi Arabia was assassinated by his nephew in 1975? Music: Who is the youngest artist to have a #1 on Billboard’s Hot 100? Art: What art movement was Yoko Ono associated with during the 1960s? Entertainment: Who has starred in movies by Francis Ford Coppola, Brian De Palma, Sergio Leone and Martin Scorsese? Literature: What Irish literary figure was also a Senator?

December Quiz Answers

Geography: What country in the Mediterranean has no mountains or rivers? Malta. History: What is the earliest surviving system of laws? The Code of Hammurabi. http://www.usefultrivia. com/history_trivia/ Sports: What Irishman won an Olympic Silver Medal in his first ever marathon? John Treacy. http://www. Math: How many five card hands can you get from a 52 card deck? 2,598,960. t7.html Science: Who discovered that a wave’s frequency changes when the source and observer are in motion relative to one another? Christian Johann Doppler, The Doppler Effect. Cooking: What are the two top selling spices in the world? Pepper is first and mustard is second. http:// General Knowledge: Where is the worlds biggest wood church located and what is it called? Finland, Kerimeski. Politics: What English monarch wrote the following poem? “No crooked leg, no bleared eye, No part deformed out of kind, Nor yet so ugly half can be, As is the inward suspicious mind.” Elizabeth 1. http://www. trivia_005a.html Music: How many songs from the Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band were released as singles? Zero. Art: What is the largest statue in the world? The largest statue in the world is Mount Rushmore, the heads of four US Presidents carved into the Black Hills near Keystone. The heads are 18 m (60 ft) tall. http://www. Entertainment: What is the most filmed story of all time? Dracula. Literature: What did James Joyce refer to as the “center of paralysis?” Dublin, his birthplace. http://www.

Connemara View Newspaper

February Horoscopes New Moon was on Monday January 26th. At the start of February, the wide crescent Moon should be visible in the southwestern sky after sunset. The Moon is Full at 14:49 on Monday 9th, in Leo. New Moon is at 01:35 on Wednesday 25th. The new crescent could be visible in the south-west at sunset any afternoon from Thursday 26th onwards. Then each evening it stays up later and sets further round to the right. First Quarter occurs again on Wednesday March 4th. Mercury is at its greatest separation west from the Sun on February 13th. But it rises only just over an hour before sunrise; it will be hard to see this elusive little planet this month. Venus is still a brilliant “Evening Star” in the south-western sky at dusk. Throughout February, Venus isn’t setting until about 9:30 pm. Relative to the stars, it’s moving rapidly north-eastwards, in Pisces; but Venus is far brighter than any of the stars. In the telescope, Venus usually appears as a featureless white disc; but it shows phases, like the Moon. This month Venus appears like the crescent Moon, a few days before First Quarter. Unlike the waxing Moon, the phase of Venus decreases during the month, from 40% to 20% illuminated, while the disc grows from 30 to 45 arc-seconds across. On the evening of Friday February 27th, the narrow crescent Moon will appear directly

below Venus; the two objects will be about 4 degrees apart and should fit nicely into the same field of view in a pair of binoculars. Mars is rising only a few minutes before sunrise. We won’t be getting good views of the “Red Planet” until after the summer. Jupiter, like Mars, rises less than an hour before the Sun this month. This giant planet won’t be easily observable until after the summer. Saturn is rising in the middle of the evening, and it’s well up in the southern sky by dawn. It’s moving very slowly northwestwards at the southern end of Leo. It lies to the lower left of the star Regulus in Leo; Saturn is just a little brighter than Regulus and shines with a steadier light. In a telescope, the disc of Saturn appears 18 arc-seconds across. The famous rings currently appear almost edge-on to Earth; they form a very narrow oval, 45 arc-seconds wide and little more than 1 arc-second high. Many of Saturn’s moons can also be seen in the telescope. The largest and brightest is Titan, which will be 190 arc-seconds east of the planet around February 5th and 20th, and a similar distance west of the planet around February 12th and 28th. Meteors There are no significant meteorshowers in February, and it is generally a quiet time for sporadic meteors too. John Claro

What’s the deal with… The decline of the Irish pub?

Successive governments and politicians looking to make a name for themselves by introducing stricter legislation on drink driving limits and higher taxes on alcohol have all but destroyed the Irish pub industry, especially in rural areas like Connemara. In late 2007 Minister for Rural, Community & Gaeltacht Affairs Eamon O Cuiv announced his intention to roll out a “drop off ” bus scheme to operate in rural areas where there is absolutely no transportation at night to enable people to go their local pub, which is often miles away, in a bid to tackle the increasing issue of social isolation. In May of 2007, 7 groups were chosen from 22 applications for funding for a rural bus service and have been generally successful to date. Far from being a “booze bus” to ferry drunks from pub to pub, the scheme has allowed users to go to mass, bingo, Irish music nights, dancing evenings, GAA social events, and support local Lottos as well as simply going to and getting home from the pub. The concept of these buses is not to offer a late night service where drunken misadventures take place as the latest bus corresponds with pub opening hours leaving younger night club revellers to get taxis as before or arrange their own way home. The concern now is that a serious drop in available funds from the government will prevent the scheme from going nationwide. If done properly, an evening pub bus scheme can and does work, but it is a tall order for publicans to take on without support. That is not to say that it can’t be done - Connemara publicans take note! Some Connemara publicans already offer lifts home to their customers to enable them to still be able to have a few pints from time to time, but they may find it an uphill struggle to keep their businesses alive. According to the VFI, over 1500 Irish pubs have closed since 2001, sometimes at a rate of one per day and 2009 is likely to see that number further increase significantly. Publicans are well aware that they now have

In the present day in Ireland, we hardly need reminding of the effects of the global and national recession we are currently enduring. Of course, there has always been a refuge for the Irish when things just get too much, or you need a lift of spirits, a chat with a friend, a quiet pint or whatever reason-yep, the high stool. So is the Irish pub industry really in crisis or will all the doom and gloom drive us back to the drink as we deal with the economic disaster currently in our laps? In early December, the Licensed Vintner’s Association, which represents publicans in Dublin, and the Vintners Federation of Ireland which represents publicans in the rest of the State announced their intention to effectively freeze prices until December 2009 in an effort to boost the ailing industry. While a commitment from publicans not to further increase the already high cost of drinking is to be welcomed, I can’t help but feel that they should be tempting us with price drops rather than freezes, if they are serious about getting punters back into the pubs. The reasons to go to your local pub in a rural area have continued to decrease drastically in recent years. Supporters of the smoking ban initially rubbished claims that pubs would suffer, but there is no disputing the fact that it has changed the face of the Irish pub scene dramatically. Where possible, most pubs have provided designated outdoor heated smoking areas like beer gardens, laneways or small shelters to try to encourage smokers to still be able to enjoy a smoke and a drink when out socialising. However, when you factor in the completely prohibitive drink driving limits and the sobering cost of a night out including a taxi home, is it really that surprising that mid week trade in particular is virtually nonexistent in a huge number of rural pubs nowadays?

Connemara View Newspaper

Aries (Mar 21-Apr 20) Expect the unexpected this month, because only the world knows what is coming, so be prepared for anything. Taurus (Apr 21-May 20) A timely message from an unknown source should not be trusted this month. The advice proves to be false Gemini (May 21-Jun 21) Work, work, work, and a bit more work. For some reason you just have to buckle down and work hard this month. Cancer ( Jun 22 – Jul 22) Kick back, enjoy the cold, wet, stormy days and nights, let it all wash by you as you stay cosy by the fire with a good book. Leo ( Jul 23 – Aug 23) A bit of a struggle has come to an end and you have upset some of the people who helped you along the way. Try to make amends. Virgo (Aug 24 – Sep 22) It’s a bit early for any kind of harvest but none the less you will reap one this month. A bit out of the blue or early, but beneficial anyway. Libra (Sep 23 – Oct 23) Just get out there and do what it is you want to do. Make sure you have a plan and that you know the outcome you want to achieve first. Scorpio (Oct 24 – Nov 22) This month proves to be a bit of a balancing act for you. The things you want versus those that others want for you. Listen to all sides before you make up your mind. Sagittarius (Nov 23 – Dec 21) The temperature is rising internally even though the weather is getting colder. You need to do something about it. Vent steam or let off some, whichever works for you. Capricorn (Dec 22 – Jan 20) This is a great month for you. Any plans that you have on the go or want to start will work out just fine. Make sure you follow your checklist. Aquarius ( Jan 21 – Feb 19) Happy Birthday! Get away for your Birthday, even if it is just to Westport or Galway. You need some you time after the holiday season so book a week off and enjoy. Pisces (Feb 20 – Mar 20) Not your month yet, so just stay in and rent as many DVDs as you can, catch up on all those books that need reading, stay in and stay warm.

February Tarot The page reversed in the past position is letting you know that you do not follow your own plan and as a result have gone off the proper path of your life. The Hierophant in the present position is telling you to trust in your beliefs (whatever they may be), they will be the strength and guide that will get you back on track. The 6 of Pentacles in the future warns against giving too much of yourself or what you own. Make sure there is a balance between give and take.

February runes

With fertility as the action you are being told be in harmony with the world around you. Adjust all of the relationships in your life to a natural balance. Separation as the challenge tells you that you must shed the old and wrong way of doing things in your life before you can move on. Progress is the lesson taught by Movement and in the overview position it is asking you to take one step at a time and not stop. Keep taking the steps. “Cultivate Your Own Nature” to work a lot harder to get bums on seats but I can’t help but feel that the odds are stacked just a bit too high despite their best efforts with karaoke nights, themed evenings and special offers. The lure of drinking at home, where you can still smoke if you want to and save yourself a good deal of cash is strong of course, but if the rural pub business continues to decline, we may find ourselves stuck at home a whole lot more in the future, simply because we have no choice in the matter. The social importance of the pub is paramount in a community, with milestone events like weddings, christenings and funerals and birthdays traditionally resulting in social gatherings in local premises. A local example might be the enthusiasm with which the re-opening of Johnny O Loghlen’s Bar in Cashel has been greeted in the past year. The people of that area know what it is like to be without a pub, and the return of a local venue in which to have a drink and meet others has been warmly welcomed by the people of the area,.

Febr uar y 2009

On a positive note, quality will always prevail, and traditional established bars are likely to survive; usually the no frills simple places that offer good quality draught beer and simple but good pub grub or snacks like the good old Irish staple soakage of the toasted sandwich. We might do well to cast an eye back to the “miserable” 80’s where the economy was far from booming, but pubs the length and breadth of the country were packed with music, dance and laughter on an ongoing basis. While things may never be that way again, some of us might be inclined to switch off the depressing “recession obsession” media for a while and head down to the pub to laugh in the face of recession. Otherwise, in years to come we might be looking back at photos of smiling faces in pubs, talking about the good old days to a generation who haven’t a notion of what we’re on about. So watch where you spend your cash, but if you want them to stay there, support your local pubs-it’s a matter of national identity. Catherine Pryce

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Upcoming Events Valentines Musical Review A Valentine’s Musical Review will take place on Friday 13th of Feb at 9:30pm in the Func Room (between JC’s Bar & Disco), with an entry fee of €5 at the door. Various singers and entertainers will perform well known love songs in what promises to be very entertaining night for all!

Clifden Arts Society Concert The Clifden Arts Society will present the Callino Quartet in concert at 8pm on February 20th at the Church of Ireland in Clifden. This amazing quartet was formed in 1999, and the members are multi-award winners. They have played with some of the biggest names in music and have given performances in most of the major concert halls in Europe. They have performed p here before and a have always received a warm welcome for their concerts. c The Callino Quartet features tu Sara Sexton on violin, Michaela M Girardi on violin, Rebecca R Jones on viola, and Sarah S McMahon on cello. They are very much associated c with the West Cork Music Festival, and are M regularly, re heard and seen o Radio and Television. on ho e to see ee you the We hope theree fo for what should be a very enjoyable concert.

Ellis’ of Letterfrack Remembered

Two of Ireland’s great unsung heroes, James and Mary Ellis, the Quaker couple who helped establish the village of Letterfrack in 1849 and also helped stave off starvation and hunger for large numbers of people in that corner of Connemara during the grim famine and immediate post-famine years, will feature in a new 9-Part radio documentary series called “Giving The Greatest Good- Quaker Relief Efforts During The Great Hunger”; to broadcast soon on Connemara Community Radio and also NUI Galway’s Flirt FM. The 2 Ellis programmes will broadcast on: Connemara Community Radio 87.8 FM - 106.1 FM on Sunday 8th February from 7 to 8 pm; and on NUI Galway’s

FLIRT 101.3 FM on Monday 23rd February from 1 to 1.30pm and continuing the following Monday 2nd March from 1 to 1.30pm. Programmes 6 & 7 in the series are devoted to the remarkable story of James and Mary Ellis, who in 1849, left their comfortable home in Bradford, England, to go live in Letterfrack in the West of Ireland and help stave off hunger and destitution for a large number of people there by giving much-needed employment at a fair-wage and setting up various job-making enterprises. In the programmes, various local historians and commentators explain the Ellis story in its entirety. As various contributors pointed out, the Ellises helped save the village of Letterfrack. Padraig Lydon aptly put it as follows: “It was the only free anything that ever came into Letterfrack. They came with their money and spent it generously and put all their efforts into helping the area. I’m not too sure there were many other places where that was done.” Photo: Paul Wright of Dublin South FM interviewing Connemara Historian Breandain O Scannaill for the Ellis programmes.

Visual Arts

Rail Exhibition at Heuston A show of Lorraine Tuck’s set of photographs honouring the old Galway to Clifden Railway line was opened by Minister Martin Mansergh at The Irish Railway Record Society at Heuston Station, Dublin in December. Photo (l-r): Micheál Walsh (Chairman off th the IIrish Railway Record i i hR il R d Society) Lorraine Tuck, Minister Martin Mansergh (Minister of State at the Department of Finance and the OPW).

Inishlacken in NY “Inishlacken; the last parish” is an exhibition that includes the work of 23 leading contemporary Irish artists, including many familiar Connemara names such as Kathleen Furey, Gavin Lavelle, Margaret Irwin, Dolores Lyne and Rosie McGurran, who curated the exhibition with Maeve Mulrennan. The impressive exhibition opened with great aplomb on January 15th at the Joan Lukas Rothenberg Gallery at Redhouse Arts Center

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February 2009

in Syracuse in upstate New York. Almost 200 people attended the opening, which was covered by local TV and press, and two artists spoke in addition to musical entertainment provided by Cassidy/McCale, an acoustic Celtic duo from Syracuse. “Inishlacken; the last parish” exhibition is a collection of work made by just some of the artists who have made the journey to the island over the past seven years. Their responses to Inishlacken Island and its rich history are all highly individual. Photography, painting, installation, video, animation and printmaking make up the core of this exhibition. This exhibition, which will run at the Redhouse Arts Centre in Syracuse until March 1st has succeeded in bringing fine and diverse elements of the artistic culture of Ireland to a wider audience, and promoting the West as a place to make art, while also showing the beauty and cultural interests of the area both at home and abroad.

New Exhibition by Lol Hardiman Renowned local artist Lol Hardiman will be showing an exhibition of his latest paintings in Anton’s Artspace in Galway city, opening on March 7th. “Face-A Western Portrait” is an exploration of Connemara with a difference as the artist has chosen to explore the region through its people rather than its landscape. The show is a creative departure for Lol who, as a founder member of The Oileán Project, is known for his many atmospheric depictions of the sea from time spent on the uninhabited islands around the coast which he calls “dream photon graphs of water in its many moods”. “I am really excited by the new work.” said the artist. “This is an exhibition I have wanted to do for a number of years but until now felt I did not have the tools and d experience to pull it off. A friend of mine, who is very accomplished with oils, has been sharing his rly forgotten discoveries of nearly forgotten techniques from the 15th and 16th centuries and started me on a new road of discovery. I hope the paintings capture something of the humour and strength of character I find in the people I share this beautiful corner of the planet with.” The image shown here is as yet unfinished and Lol is not giving away much about the show but he says there maybe some surprises and a number of faces people will recognize. Face-A Western Portrait opens in Anton’s Café and Artspace on Fr. Griffin Rd, Galway City at 6.30pm on Sat March 7th and runs until March 28th. Details of Lol’s work in previous exhibitions of The Oileán Project can be seen at: and he can be contacted on 087 2384040. Photo: One of Lol Hardiman’s works in progress.

Connemara ArtsView

Station House Cinema

Twilight is an action-packed, modern-day love story between a teenage girl and a vampire. Bella Swan (Kristen Stewart) has always been a little bit different, never caring about fitting in with the trendy girls at her Phoenix high school. When her mother remarries and sends Bella to live with her father in the rainy little town of Forks, Washington, she doesn’t expect much of anything to change. Then she meets the mysterious and dazzlingly beautiful Edward Cullen (Robert Pattinson), a boy unlike any she’s ever met. Edward is a vampire, but he doesn’t have fangs and his family is unique in that they choose not to drink human blood. Intelligent and witty, Edward sees straight into Bella’s soul. Soon, they are swept up in a passionate, thrilling and unorthodox romance. Starring: Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson, Taylor Lautner. Duration : 122mins (12A) Beverly Hills Chihuahua. A Pampered Beverly Hills Chihuahua gets lost while on vacation in Mexico. Papi (voiced by George Lopez), an amusing Chihuahua who’s crazy about Chloe, springs into action and heads south of the border to rescue her, while Chloe gets help from Delgado (voiced by Andy Garcia), her newfound friend and self appointed protector. A heartwarming and outrageously funny tale proving once and again that good things do come in small packages! A real treat for the whole family! Starring: Drew Barrymore, Andy Garcia, Piper Perabo, George Lopez. 91mins (G) Bolt For super-dog BOLT (voice of JOHN TRAVOLTA), every day is filled with adventure, danger and intrigue - at least until the cameras stop

Annie-A Christmas Cracker!

The most recent Ceol Theatre production, “Annie” was such a resounding success over the Christmas period that additional shows were added to cope with demand. Maeve Vaughan of Clifden and Janni Coyne of Renvyle alternated the lead role throughout the run, and both put in performances that were polished, confident, funny and hugely entertaining. From the smallest parts to the lead roles, this production was truly a triumph for Ceol Theatre and all who took part and first time director Maureen Corbett more than succeeded in bringing the very best of Connemara talent to all who attended. In an excellent ensemble cast, it is difficult to single out individuals any for particular praise, but the lead roles of Oliver (Daddy) Warbucks and Grace Ferrell, played by John Amenhauser and Alannah Robbins were very sincere, convincing and impressive. John McDermott and Marie McGlynn had the audience in convulsions of laughter as dastardly duo Rooster and Lily, ably assisted by the sometimes terrifying Miss Hannigan, played with wonderful vigour and enthusiasm by Elizabeth Whelan. But of course, Annie wouldn’t be Annie without

Connemara ArtsView

rolling. When the star of a hit TV show is accidentally shipped from his Hollywood soundstage to New York City, he begins his biggest adventure yet - a cross-country journey through the real world. Starring: John Travolta, Miley Cyrus and Susie Essman. 96 mins (G) Go to for dates and times or phone 095-30303.

February Video Releases

the soldiers they are portraying. Stars: Ben Stiller, Robert Downey Jr & Jack Black.

RocknRolla When a Russian mobster orchestrates a crooked land deal, millions of dollars are up for grabs, and all of London’s criminal underworld wants in on the action. Stars: Gerard Butler & Thandie Newton Monthly DVD releases courtesy of Video Vault, Main St, Clifden, (095) 22033.

You Don’t Mess With The Zohan: Outrageous comedy about an Israeli Special Forces Soldier who fakes his own death so he can re-emerge in New York City as a hair stylist. Stars: Adam Sandler & Rob Schneider. Step Brothers: Brennan Huff and Dale Doback are both about 40 when Brennan’s mom and Dale’s dad marry. The sons still live with the parents so they must now share one roof, with hilarious results. Stars: Will Ferrell & John C. Reilly. Burn After Reading: Following on from the success of No Country For Old Men Joel and Ethan Coen bring you Burn After Reading - a dark spy-comedy revolving around a disk containing CIA secrets ending up in the hands of two unscrupulous gym employees who attempt to sell it. Stars: Brad Pitt, John Malkovich & Frances McDormand. Tropic Thunder: Through a series of freak occurrences, a group of actors shooting a big-budget war movie are forced to become

one very special ingredient - the kids. All of the children who played the orphans and sang and took part are what made this show truly special, and should be very proud of themselves. The youngest cast member Ciara McDermott was beyond adorable and thrilled the audience regularly, and along with her fellow junior cast members has a bright future on the stage! The importance and value of this kind of entertainment was widely acknowledged and commented on in the community, and it regularly brings laughter, enjoyment and a ray of light into people’s lives.

Upcoming Ceol Theatre Events Ceol Theatre’s next musical stage production will be “Hello Dolly”. Auditions will take place in March with the shows in June. They will also run a children’s program during the same time where they will make their own Connemara version of “High School Musical”. If you would like to be a part of this show or any of Ceol Theatre’s productions please contact John at 087 750 4697.

February 2009

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A love affair with chocolate and wine... We can pretty much take it for granted that love and being in love is good for us. We feel happy, excited and positive. A bouquet of flowers and a sentimental greeting card will always bring a smile. Additionally, some of our favourite treats are ideal gifts to give to or share with loved ones. A variety of international scientific studies show strong evidence that conservative amounts of both chocolate and wine can have significant health benefits.

Chocolate It is the cocoa in what is called chocolate that is a friend to our hearts. On its discovery, the product of the beans of the cacao pod was christened “Theobroma” meaning “food of the gods”. It is one of the most, if not the most popular sweet-tasting treats in the world, and has been for centuries. Its mood enhancing effects are also one of the reasons it is so globally popular, as it raises serotonin levels (the feel-good chemical in the brain). It is also often regarded as an aphrodisiac, another obvious reason why it is so strongly associated with Valentine’s Day, as a gift for lovers and loved ones. Cocoa beans naturally contain significant amounts of the antioxidant super-nutrients known as flavonoids. These are water-soluble plant pigments, which are beneficial to human health. Dark chocolate is naturally rich in flavonoids, and is therefore the “healthy” chocolate in question. Dark chocolate has no milk solids added to it, so the amount of flavonoids is not diluted by another ingredient. Research carried out in various studies on flavonoid-rich chocolates and cocoas have found that they can have anti clotting and anti inflammatory effects which could help lower the risk of heart disease. Flavonoids also seem to stimulate our bodies to produce more nitric oxide, which helps to widen and relax blood vessels. This may help to lower blood pressure. It is also possible that flavonoids also help to stop bad cholesterol from oxidising, which in practice could prevent arteries from clogging up. The real quality of flavonoids in chocolate is usually indicated in its percentage of cocoa solids used. The dark chocolates we would have consumed in Europe up until the 80’s would have had as little as 30% cocoa, but producers of dark chocolate like Green & Black’s or Valrhona have made 70% dark chocolate widely available and the new standard of genuinely dark chocolate. Milk chocolates are generally very low in flavonoids, while white chocolate contains none. Manufacturers are developing ways of processing the cocoa bean in order to retain more flavonoids, but for now, the only way to be sure you are getting a few is to stick to high percentage of cocoa solids dark chocolate, which is now widely available in supermarkets and heath food shops in Ireland. Restraint is also important as ever, a square or two is best, not the whole bar...

In vino veritas...

“Nothing more excellent or valuable than wine was ever granted by the Gods to man.” Plato In a charming coincidence, a glass of red wine, which of course is a wonderful accompaniment to a nibble of chocolate, can also do some good for our hearts. Various scientific studies in recent years have indicated that red wine may offer some protection against heart disease. Some studies indicated that a moderate amount of red wine drunk daily (one glass for women, two for men) lowers the risk of heart attack in middle aged people by 30-50%. As we may already suspect, the incidence of heart disease and cancer among populations who consume a lot of red wine is dramatically less than those that don’t, even though they may also have a high fat diet. Again we return to our healthy antioxidant friends, in this case, polyphenols, anthrocyanidins and in particular, resveratrol. Resveratrol, which is found in grape skins and seeds, increases HDL cholesterol (the good cholesterol) and prevents blood clotting. It is found in large quantities in red wine grape

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skins, stems and seeds, which is why red wine is better for you than white. Of course it is not the alcohol in red wine that is good for you, so as ever; moderation is the key to getting the benefits that have been medically supported for decades now, (one glass daily for women and two for men). Grape juice and other non alcoholic drinks made from red wine grapes may be just as beneficial. So in addition to being a very enjoyable tipple to share with good company, by having a glass of red wine, you may be protecting yourself against certain cancers and heart disease, and positively affecting your cholesterol levels and blood pressure. So there you have it-as well as giving chocolate and wine as a Valentine’s gift, you will actually be physically helping the heart of the one of you love, and really, what could be more romantic than that?! Catherine Pryce

Cheap and easy ways to treat your Valentine 1 - Just tell them you love them While younger generations are very comfortable saying those three little words these days, there are many Irish people, men in particular who don’t use the phrase regularly with their wives or partners. I am always reminded of a woman in her 50’s who called in to a radio show a few years ago, complaining that in her 30 years of marriage, she could never recall her husband telling her he loved her. She didn’t feel that he didn’t love her, but it upset her that he just never said it. Eventually her husband was contacted by the DJ, who asked him why. His response was that he had told his wife that he loved her on the day they were married and if he ever changed his mind he would let her know! I suppose it’s along the same lines of “Of course I love you, sure didn’t I marry you!” These examples might go some way to showing that since the majority of Irish men are not known for their great grasp of romance, it’s no harm to remind them of it occasionally. Hoping, feeling or suspecting that someone might love you is not enough-so just say the words! 2 - If you just can’t get the words out - spell it out. On the floor of a room you can arrange practically anything into shape to spell out “I Love You” to your partner, from small candles to strawberries or items that mean something to you both. Be creative- getting a laugh or a smile is priceless. For example why not spell out a love message with the aptly coloured pinks or roosters potatoes? While they might think you’re a bit mad, those are the kind of moments that linger in the memory forever. 3 - The Love Note You don’t have to be Shakespeare to give your loved one a few meaningful written words. A simple note with a special personal message will stand the test of time. How many people remember the various Valentine cards they’ve received over the years? But a special note from someone you really love and who loves you can mean a lot more. 4 - Make a personal music CD It might sound juvenile at first, but a compilation CD of all your partner’s favourite music is a great gift. They can listen to it in the car or anywhere and it will always make them think of you-just make sure to fill it with their favourite songs-not your own! 5 - Make a photo montage A simple montage of old and newer photos of the two of you is a great way to mark Valentine’s Day. Old holiday pictures, funny ones or any photos that make you remember fun times can be very romantic and touching when put together in a montage. A simple glass frame or even just a board is all you need-but don’t chop up your partner’s photos without asking in case they are irreplaceable! 6 - A walk down memory lane Re-visit the place where you first met, or go to some of the places you used to go to when you first got together. Remembering how and why you got together can refresh and re-ignite your feelings for each other. 7 - Just do something nice unexpectedly Many ladies would love to come home after a long day to a spotless house, or a nice clean bedroom lit by candles! Back and foot rubs are also always popular and cost nothing so just do something that you know your partner would appreciate. As the saying goes, “Actions speak louder than words”, so give your Valentine a really heartfelt treat! Catherine Pryce

Febr uar y 2009

Connemara View Newspaper

February 2009 Connemara View  
February 2009 Connemara View  

Connemara View Newspaper february 2009. Connemara, Co. Galway, Ireland