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DundrumInformer 15,000 copies delivered monthly

October 2012 • Unit 26, Western Parkway Business Centre, Ballymount, Dublin 12 • Tel: 01 813 8786 • Email: • Web:

Dundrum • Marley • Clonskeagh • Windy Arbour • Goatstown

Evacuated apartment complex to be sold

The Coronas

"If the property bubble hadn’t come to a grinding halt, these apartments would have been sold" The residents of a luxury apartment complex in Dundrum will not be able to return to their homes because fire issues at the complex are too expensive to repair.

Instead, the apartment block, which was in breach of fire regulations, will be sold off. The 130 residents in 75 rented apartments had to leave The Laurels development on Ballinteer Road, opposite Dundrum Town Centre, in July after fire safety hazards were identified during routine repair work at the premises. The residents were initially told that they would be temporarily relocated without having to pay expenses such as rent and utility bills. It was expected that residents would be able to return to their accommodation after three months when the building was deemed to be in compliance with fire safety standards. However, a spokesperson for receivers KPMG said the building will be put on the market in the coming weeks. “When they looked into, it was considerably more than they had anticipated. They have been

By Martin Flanagan communicating with tenants for the last couple of weeks. They won’t unfortunately get back into the apartments. They are working with them to relocate them and either set up tenancy agreements with accommodation they are currently in, or find them accommodation elsewhere, depending on what tenants want to do…their priority has always been the tenants.” Fine Gael TD for Dublin South Peter Mathews has expressed his frustration at the standard of safety in some buildings that were constructed during the boom. "From a safety and regulations standpoint, this case is beginning to look more and more like Priory Hall. What is different is that at least at the Laurels, nobody actually bought their apartment. However, all the occupiers of the apartments have been

greatly discommoded. In July, residents were told that they must leave their homes in order to resolve safety issues because the building did not comply with fire regulations. They were assured the necessary corrective work would be completed in three months, but now they have been left stranded in fresh uncertainty.” Deputy Mathews added: “The shabby standard of construction in this country during the boom period is disgraceful. People residing in apartment blocks need to feel safe in their homes and they cannot do so if basic fire and building regulations are ignored. "If the property bubble hadn’t come to a grinding halt, these apartments would have been sold on the open market. This is a clear example of the need for proper regulation and inspection of apartments during their construction. Self-certification and self-regulation simply is not working.” KMPG are currently liaising with tenants to help them secure alternative accommodation.


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Win 2 Tickets to the Opening Night of Anglo - The Musical We've had the drama, we've had the rescue, heads have rolled, people are hurting and we have the bill. Now we have the musical and you can be there.

See page 2

Fingal's willow Win two tickets to see Why we need allotments Green Day's American Idiot gender quotas Green Scene Page 4

See Page 2

Ivana Bacik - Page 2



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The Informer

The Drift Comment Box

Ivana Bacik

We need gender quotas

Dublin by Numbers


To be precise, 57.34 million tonnes, is the quantity of emmissions emitted by Ireland into the atmosphere in 2011 according to the EPA. This was a fall of 7% on 2010. A lot of the decrease was due to the recession and Ireland is now on course to meet its Kyoto targets. Agriculture remains the single largest contributor to overall emissions, at 32.1% of the total.


The winner of the tickets for the Soul Sister competition Janine Finn, Trim, Co Meath.

Editor: Niall Gormley Unit 38, Northwood Court, Santry, Dublin 9 01 813 8786 • • Sales Director: Declan Keane • Mobile: 087 9145073 For Advertising Enquiries, please contact: Telephone: 01 813 8786

On 28th July 2012, the Electoral (Amendment) (Political Funding) Act 2012 was signed by the President. This Act started life as a Seanad bill, and is known more commonly as the gender quota bill (though it is much more than this). It requires political parties to select at least 30% of their candidates from each gender at the next general election. If they fail to do this, serious financial penalties will be applied. The reason for this legislation is clear. Women have long been excluded from political life in Ireland. Women account for half of the Irish population, yet the proportion of women TDs has never exceeded 15 per cent. To put it another way, the Dáil has always been at least 85% male. In 1990, when Mary Robinson was elected as Ireland’s first woman President, there was a sense that things were changing, and there was an optimism that things would get better for women in the world of politics. Shockingly, however, Ireland’s rate of women’s political representation has reduced drastically over the last twenty years. In 1990, Ireland was in 37th position in the world classification of women’s representation in parliament. Today we are in 89th position – international comparisons show Ireland performing very poorly in the promotion of women in politics. The issue of women’s exclusion from political life has thus long been a concern. Because of this, at my initiative the Oireachtas Joint Committee on Justice, Equality, Law Reform and Women’s Rights appointed a sub-committee on women’s participation in politics in 2009The main objective of our sub-committee was to examine the challenges facing women who wish to pursue a career in politics at local, national and European levels. We published a report in October 2009 which found that women were being excluded from participation in political life by what have become known as the “5 Cs”: Culture, Cash, Childcare, Confidence, and Candidate Selection Procedures ( One of the key recommendations we made in the report was the introduction of legislation requiring political parties to select at least a certain minimum proportion of candidates of each gender – based on successful similar initiatives in Belgium and Spain. This law ensures that voters will have greater opportunity to elect women – but it leaves the choice to the electorate. I am delighted that this recommendation has now become law through the Electoral (Amendment) Act. This legislation should have a transformative effect on the political landscape at the next election - I greatly welcome its passage.


Green Day’s American Idiot – a coming-of-age story about three boyhood friends searching for meaning in a post 9-11 world - is at the Bord Gáis Energy Theatre from November 5th to 10th 2012. AMERICAN IDIOT features the music of Green Day with the lyrics of its lead singer Billie Joe Armstrong

To be in with a chance to win a pair of tickets to see Anglo The Musical on the opening night in Wednesday November 14 answer the following question: Who wrote the Anglo- The Musical? Answers by e-mail only to Please include your contact number Closing date for entries 5th November 2012.

To be in with a chance to win a pair of tickets to see Anglo The Musical on the opening night in Wednesday November 14 answer the following question: What band's music is featured in American Idiot? Answers by e-mail only to Please include your contact number Closing date for entries 5th November 2012.



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Green Scene

Fingal's willow allotments

I’m writing this on Tree Day with the rain soaking down all over Ireland and no chance to plant a tree today, so I’m planning future tree planting instead. Ireland lost its forests to human activity centuries ago and we are one of the least wooded countries in Europe – in most others woodland provides employment, food and leisure opportunities on a substantial scale, and are once more being valued as a fuel source. So I was delighted to hear that Fingal County Council are offering a new kind of allotment to a few lucky people. Instead of being used to grow food these particular allotments, on marginal land around council properties, will be used for growing willow. Planted with a special mixture of fast growing varieties the stems will be cut down, dried and chipped every autumn for use in domestic wood burning heating systems. They grow so quickly that by the next autumn they will be ready to cut again. The first of these allotments will be at the Turvey Road site in Donabate, with half a dozen more beside Skerries Mills, where a willow garden showing many different varieties has already been planted, with more varieties to be added over the winter. I gather that in the future there may also be some wood lots at the Balbriggan allotment site currently under construction. There will be an open day at this site on October 20th when you can also find out about pig rearing and bee keeping at the allotments which put an emphasis on local sustainability and education. If you help to build the pig pens, put up fencing etc, on the day your work can be offset against allotment fees.

Planting under the woods

But back to woodlands which can also be a great food source. We have got used to seeing fruit trees only estab-

lished in formal orchards with the ground underneath them bare, but in many cultures they are part of a multi layered growing system with tall trees, small trees, shrubs, perennial crops and annual crops underneath them. The pioneer of this system was the great Robert Harte, author of The Forest Garden, and I recommend that anyone who is thinking of planting timber or fruit on a large or small scale look at his book or at this video ( October is the start of the tree planting season – bare root trees can go in at any time from now until March and they will feed you, store carbon, produce fuel, and improve biodiversity. If you manage nothing else go for a walk in your local woodland on the first fine day.

Farmers march for big farmers

I found myself wondering this month how representative of Ireland’s farmers those who gathered in Dublin to demonstrate really are? And I wasn’t surprised that that was the most expensive display of printed posters I’ve seen at a demonstration since the beginning of the recession. Because when it comes down to it most of Ireland’s farmers are small farmers, and most of them farm marginal land. And for small farmers on marginal land flat rate payments are far more beneficial than the production based payments that the demonstrators were calling for, which will chiefly benefit larger farms in the East and the Midlands. According to An Taisce it is flat rate CAP payments that will best sustain local economies, protect family farms and boost rural employment and are in Ireland's overall best interests. In fact, a flat rate is the single most important reform to help Ireland maintain population in peripheral counties such as Mayo, to protect and develop

The Informer

By Kathy Marsh, Sonairte tourism across the West and North, and to help stem the tide of emigration which is sweeping across the West once again. The true leaders of Ireland's land struggle, from Davitt and Parnell to Healy, would take an extremely dim view of the very narrow interests currently being pursued by ‘Big Agriculture’, and so will many small family farmers of my acquaintance who are only making their holdings on marginal land pay by adding value to their produce before sale. There is nothing for them in this.

Idiocy of EU fisheries policies

Food Harvest 2020 is being touted as a potential saviour for the Irish economy but the viability of the plan has never been properly tested, nor has its impact on the environment been looked at – indeed it is possible that it could be completely blocked at EU level because of this absence of examination and that Ireland could be severely fined for ignoring the environmental impacts of government actions. Big producers interests are preferred to small producers at sea as well. I don’t think any of us missed the courageous action of Kilmore Quay fisherman Seamus O’Flaherty at the beginning of this month when he gave away a substantial part of his catch of monkfish, “discarding” it to those on the quay rather than throw it overboard at sea, dying or dead. He certainly succeeded in highlighting the idiocy of current EU fisheries policies to the world’s media. At present the rules say that fish which are too small or fall outside European quotas must be thrown overboard, although very few treated like this survive to breed or be caught again at a future date. The rules are intended to protect fish stocks but at present some 38 per cent of commercial Irish whitefish catches are thrown overboard under them.

It is time to demand that Simon Coveney, the Minister responsible, works to ensure that the Common Fisheries Policy is reformed to ensure that priority is given to applying selective fishing practices in order to avoid unwanted catches in the first place. There needs to be better management plans for all fish stocks, with effective monitoring and enforcement. We need to make sure that new rules don’t give commercial advantages to unscrupulous operators. And maybe while he’s doing it the Minister could also fight a bit harder for Ireland to have a fairer share of the quota in Irish waters.

Good news - our air is cleaner

After problems on land and water you’ll probably be glad to hear that over most of the country the air is pretty clean – Ireland has some of the cleanest air in Europe. This isn’t the case in either the centre of Dublin and Cork or in some of our towns. The causes are different in the two cases though. Despite the recession there are still enough cars and trucks in our city centres to cause air pollution from both raised levels of nitric oxide and the fine particles which are a side effect of diesel combustion, and in our towns and villages we are still burning smokey coal, adding a lot more of these fine particles. In fact our EU pollution control agreements mean that we have to cut production of fine particulate matter, AKA soot, by 10 per cent by 2020. We can thank our prevailing Atlantic winds, as well as our low level of heavy industry for our air quality, but we need to burn clean fuels if we are going to improve it in the future. And given that improving air also improves health keeping cars and vans properly serviced and not using smoky coal seems a small price to pay. You can track air quality live at data/. At this moment my local station is showing almost undetectable carbon dioxide emissions – I guess it is being washed out. What does it look like where you live?



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The Informer

Angler's Angles

The sky over Dublin with Conor Farrell, Astronomy Ireland

with Keith McDonnell

The amazing Irish brown trout In the neighbourhood of Jupiter The trout fishing season ended at the end of September on most rivers in Ireland and the fish will hopefully be left in peace to spawn over the next couple of months in the shallower headwaters of our river systems. In general it has been a difficult season for the trout angler as the amount of rainfall made fishing conditions difficult with high river levels for much of the summer. Hatches of insects were poor. In this article I'd like to share some information about the amazing brown trout itself, my favourite fish. The brown trout is a native species to Ireland and is closely related to the Atlantic Salmon. It is said that this fish has been in Ireland since end of the last Ice Age. The brown trout inhabits a large number of streams, rivers and lakes throughout the Island. Trout need clean, well oxygenated water that is

n A stunning Irish brown trout

relatively cool in order to thrive. Many prime trout rivers in Ireland were irreparably damaged in the past by dredging and straightening them in order to prevent flooding. Some of these rivers have become canal-like in appearance and now fail to support populations of trout because they now lack the basic requirements: clean silt-free gravels for spawning and cover for fish to hide from predators. However, we are extremely lucky to have wild brown trout living in most of the rivers in our capital city. This demonstrates the remarkable adaptability of the trout. Trout feed primarily on invertebrates that live underwater. Growth rates of brown trout vary enormously in depending on the type of river and lake and the fishes diet. Some trout become more predatory and feed on small fish. Some of these fish eating trout will become very large in size. Brown trout can live to be up to twenty years old. It is important that we look after this wonderful creature and its habitat and anglers in particular should consider returning the fish they catch as our native brown trout are too valuable to be caught only once! The next time you are out for a stroll by a river or a lake keep an eye out for tell-tale rings on the surface of the water as this is more than likely the greedy trout coming to the surface to eat an insect. Keith McDonnell is a fly fishing guide and instructor and big trout nut based in Dublin.

Although we didn't get a great summer ther away, so appears smaller, but possibly this year we can now start to make the most more impressive than the Hyades. If you of darker and earlier nights, and this month observe this cluster with binoculars or a telethe highlights are the Moon, Jupiter, and a scope you will quickly see that the stars are couple of nice star clusters. surrounded by clouds of interstellar gas and In the late evenings, look out for a bright dust. The stars in the Pleiades are estimated to be about 100 million years old, with those 'star' in the eastern sky. This is the planet in the Hyades aged at 625 million years. Jupiter and you can see its moons and cloud belts using even a small telescope. We're also On November 1st, the Moon will be placed going to use the planet as a 'signpost' this immediately next to Jupiter in this part of the month, as it's placed next to two well-known sky, forming a stunning sight, combining star clusters: Hyades and Pleiades. young and old stars, our nearest celestial When you find Jupiter, look out for a red- neighbour, and the largest planet in the Solar dish-coloured star nearby. This is Aldebaran System. and is in the same region of the sky as the Hyades Cluster. Around Aldebaran you'll see some stars forming a sideways 'V' shape (the horns or head of Taurus, the constellation the cluster is in). These are the brighter giant stars of the Hyades, which is the closest open cluster to our Solar System at a distance of 153 light years. Aldebaran forms one star in the V, and the opposite star is called Epsilon Tauri. Also known as Ain, this star is home to at least one gas giant planet. Above Aldebaran and the Hyades is bright cluster of younger and hotter blue stars: the Pleiades. This cluster is fur- n A photo of the Pleiades Star Cluster

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The Informer

Garden Growing With Gerry Norton Al the leaves are brown - so save them! With September behind us autumn has really started in earnest. I’m not at all fond of the dark mornings but we’ll have to put up with this until the clock changes at the end of the month. September was a reasonable month apart from a few very wet days in the late week. There was no sign of an Indian summer. However let’s keep our fingers crossed as October can be a very pleasant month. A lot to be done

There is a lot of work to be done this month so have a good wander in the garden and work to a plan. Hedges and most shrubs should be pruned now but if there are berries leave these for the birds as they will devour them in a few months when food is scarce. Leaves must be gathered every week for the next eight weeks or so as other-

wise they will do damage to your lawn. Don’t forget to put a few bags of leaves aside for at least a year as leaf mould is a marvellous natural compost. Bare patches on lawns should also be treated now but you need to do this very soon, don’t wait until the end of the month.

cheap, €40 or so. I will put my delicate container grown shrubs into it for the winter, plants like Abutilon, Brugmansia, and Coleonema. A great time for planting

A bit sad now

Your veg plot will look a bit sad now that it’s finished providing us with food. You can make a start on clearing it out and once this is done it’s a good idea to cover it with plastic sheets to keep the weeds at bay. Soon we will have to contend

Tip of the Month

Clean out or buy new bird feeders. We will soon start to see winter visitors such as the blackcap. Make sure to leave out some water as well as seeds and nuts.

n Now is a great time to plant shrubs and trees with the first of the winter frosts. Frost can be expected, especially in the midlands, from now on so get some horticultural fleece which is available in garden centres. Cut it into shape to protect any plants that may be frost damaged.

As we all know a lot of supposedly hardy plants were killed or damaged in the winters of 2009 and 2010. I don’t have enough space for a green house but the cheap mini plastic greenhouse which I bought last year works really well and they are very

Now is a great time to plant shrubs and trees as they will get established over the winter. The garden centres and nurseries will have a good stock available soon but even if you only have a small garden you can still have a few trees. I would strongly recommend Malus or Crab apple as they have lovely small fruits and won’t grow too tall.. October is also the time to lift and store dahlias, gladioli and summer flowering bulbs. Speaking of bulbs you can now start to plant for next spring. My favourite bulb is 'Fritillaria' or snake’s head fritillaria, the bell shaped flowers resemble tiffany lamps and are really gorgeous.

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Finally folks, if you need any information on gardening or if you have any tips or suggestions which I can pass on, please send them to me at I would be delighted to quote for any/all of your garden requirements from set-up organic vegetable plots to restoration of neglected gardens, design, planting and maintenance. No charge for initial visit and I will travel within reason.

Gerry Norton, Living Landescapes, 97 Church Avenue, Drumcondra, Dublin 9 Tel: 087-2462724 or email

The Informer


A new era in toothcare arrives in Ireland

World-leading dental treatment at incredibly low prices! A DRAMATICALLY new dental practice has been launched that provides some of the world’s most advanced aesthetic and cosmetic dental treatments. And you don’t have to travel to central or southern Europe for its huge benefits. It’s now available in the recently opened state-of-the-dental-art Carlow Dental Centre in Graiguecullen. The Centre has been established by two of the best dentists in Hungary – itself acknowledged as a world-leading country in that field. Between them, Dr. William Hayfron and Dr. Krisztian Sallai have two decades of highly successful experience treating patients from around the world. And now, responding to a growing need from Irish patients, Doctors Hayfron and Sallai have opened a practice in Ireland. In doing so, they will enable people with dental problems to achieve major savings while relieving them of the stress and time-consumption of travelling abroad. Making your smile wider than your wallet

The clinic claims three major qualities: Cost, Confidence

and Convenience. Cost meaning low prices. Confidence that comes from being treated by highly qualified dental practitioners experienced in crowns, bridges... and in restoring smiles which adds so much to one’s self-confidence. Convenience is in the surgery’s accessible location and its opening hours at weekends. Then there’s the speed of service delivery. Even the most complex dental restoration can be achieved within two weeks (subject to no inflammation or the absolute need for extractions). Not least, there’s a dedication to minimising discomfort and pain. Indeed, the majority of today’s patients say they feel hardly any pain during and after their treatment. Equally satisfying is the minimum pain to the bank balance. Cost Comparisons:

• A porcelain crown generally costs €700-900 per tooth. At Carlow Dental Centre, it is €380. • A root canal treatment is generally starts at €600-700. At Carlow Dental Centre it costs from €100. And at Carlow Dental Centre the results are fully guaranteed! Dental problems may get only worse if neglected. So people are advised not to put off this opportunity to widen their smile with advanced treatments... at the lowest-possible prices. Early feedback

A recent Carlow patient, Niall Curran, the Tipperary hurling star, declared: “I am truly satisfied. I’ve got my confidence back!” Carlow Dental Centre Unit 9, Graigue Village Centre, Graiguecullen 059 917 3762,

265x160_CN_2012.indd 1

2012.05.13. 11:09:54


The Informer

Coronas - ready to rock the O2 The Informer Interview Cool, talented, but still very much grounded, that’s just a few ways you can describe our very own Irish, rock-indie band, The Coronas who are now about to kick off their European tour this month. Kevin O’Brien caught up with Danny O’Reilly from The Coronas who talks about the band and their musical influences and there's even a few things you may not already know about The Coronas When did The Coronas get together as a band? We started in school but properly started gigging and releasing music when we were studying in college in 2007

What type of artists / music influence The Coronas? The Beatles, Fleetwood Mac, The Kinks, Radiohead, The Frames, too many more to mention.

How did you come up with the name The Coronas? Our favorite film at the time was "Almost Famous" and the main character writes his article on an old school typewriter called a "Corona-Smyth" deluxe. We used to be called Corona but then changed to The Coronas.

Who writes your songs? What are the main themes or topics for most of your songs? We all write songs together. Themes can vary from love and friendships to songs about critics. A lot of our songs are about us as a band trying to be the best we can be

How did you all meet? Knoxy (Bass) and myself have been lifelong friends. We met when we were babies as our parents are friends. Conor (drummer) we met in school, Dave in college.

How has your music evolved since you first began playing music together? I think we've gotten more confident, more accomplished as musicians and we understand how the process of songwriting works better now than when we started out Was it financially tough for The Coronas when starting out? How does that compare to now with you being a successful, international Indie/Rock group? Ha-ha, it's still tough financially! There isn't much money in the music industry these days but we're lucky we have a job that we love. When we started out we still had part time jobs! What is the weirdest thing The Coronas have been asked to do, did you do it? We were asked to support Paul

McCartney which was weird because he's our hero but amazing and of course we did it!.

Name one thing people may be surprised to know about you? I can turn my eyelids inside out.

What type of music do you listen to on your iPods at moment? Mumford and Sons, Roisin O'Hudson Taylor, Muse.

What is The Corona’s best memory as a band to date and why? Playing six sold out nights in the Olympia last Christmas.

Is there anything The Coronas would not do for money, explain? Lots of things! Thankfully money is down our list of priorities. What as a band is The Coronas biggest achievement to date? Playing in the O2 on December 14th

Do you have any favorite venues that you like playing? The Olympia! What is your most memorable gig ever and why? We headlined Marlay Park last summer and it was our biggest show to date, amazing crowd, amazing night!

Do you think manufactured bands like The Wanted or One Direction are good for the music industry, explain? Yeah, why not? They' are selling records and gigs all over the world. Fair play to them! What is on the future horizon for The Coronas? We've a European tour next month, then UK tour in October, then O2 in December! Gonna be a good couple of months! Don’t forget to check out The Corona’s website for more details about band news and gigs,

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The Informer

All about Dublin 1

A Place in the City

The Royal Canal - Binn's Bridge The Royal Canal was the second of the two canals connecting Dublin to the River Shannon to be constructed. The construction of the Royal Canal was one of the most expensive projects undertaken during this period. In 1814 the Royal Canal was connected to the Shannon Navigation at Cloondara, County Longford. The majority of bridges between Dublin and Mullingar wre called after company directors. The forth bridge over the canal at Drumcondra was named after John Binns, one of the founder members of the Royal Canal Company, as it was near his home in Dorset Street. From 1820, leases for a number of mill sites were granted along the Royal Canal. The main reason for establishing these industries on the canal bank was for the availability of water to operate the mills. One of these leases was granted to John Hills, close to Drumcondra, for a glass factory. In more recent times a statue of the playwright Brendan Behan sitting on a bench was erected on the bank of the Royal Canal beside Binn's Bridge. This is an appropriate location for the monument as Behan's most famous

play The Quare Fellow, centring around an execution, was set in Mountjoy Jail, a few hundred yards away. A line from the play reads as follows: 'the ole triangle goes jingle, jangle on the banks of the Royal Canal.' From the 1930s there was a gradual reduction in trade on the canal with the increase of the railway carrying stock.

Lesser Known Dubliners

In 1944 CIE took over the service but When Dr. Barry O'Meara (1783-1836), it was closed in 1963. Recently there born in Newtownpark House, Blackrock, has been a revival of activity on the was thrown out of the British Army for canal, particularly with leisure traffic. taking part in a duel he might have disappeared An excerpt from 'Dublin North from history, but, despite Coast; Drumcondra - Clontarf - Howth his record he was taken on - Malahide,' with paintings by Margaret by the Navy, and there his Field and text by Arthur Flynn. It is fortunes changed. published by Cottage Publictions. When Napoleon was defeated O'Meara was aboard the frigate Bellerophon when the former Emperor was brought on board. The trip to England was a nasty six-day voyage and O'Meara had his hands full - and as he was the only officer who could speak French and Italian he struck up a friendship with Napoleon. When Napoleon's own doctor became seriously ill Dr. O'Meara was asked to accompany him to exile on St. Helena. He agreed, but on condition that he would not be a spy - he would only report if Napoleon was trying to escape. On St. Helena he cared for Napoleon for a year and all went well until a new Governor was installed, Sir Hudson Lowe. Lowe and Napoleon came to loathe each other and eventually Napoleon refused



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Edited by Zoz Dr. Barry O'Meara any contact with him, leaving O'Meara as the only link between the two. O'Meara became concerned as Napoleon's health worsened but was sent back to England and when he tried to explain that Napoleon really was ill he was kicked out of the Navy without a pension, and struck off the medical register. Not deterred, O'Meara set up shop as a dentist on the Edgeware Road, hanging one of Napoleon's teeth in the window as an advertisement. When Napoleon died in May 1821 Dr. O'Meara promptly published his diaries and made a fortune. He was taken back onto the medical register, became a Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons and joined the Reform Club. After attending a Daniel O'Connell meeting he got a bad dose of flu and died a fortnight later in 1836, aged 53. The full Story is told in 'The Emperor and the Irishman,' by Dr. Hubert O'Connor, published by A. & A. Farmar, priced €20.

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The Royal Marine: An ideal venue to enjoy your Christmas

The Royal Marine Hotel, Dun Laoghaire is the ideal venue to enjoy the Christmas Festivities or to relax and unwind in the build-up to the New Year.

Coach and Car parking is complimentary for all Hotel residents, in our underground car-park.

Situated in an elevated site on 4 acres of beautifully landscaped gardens overlooking Dublin Bay, the ‘old world’ Royal Marine Hotel will ensure you leave 2012 behind and concentrate on yourself…

Leisure Facilities: The Pier Health Club features State-of-the-art Cardio & Resistance Equipment, Luxury 18 Metre Pool, Steam Room, Sauna & Hydro Pool

Leave the worries of 2012 behind… Relax and unwind throughout Christmas 2012 at the Royal Marine Hotel Choices during the Christmas Season include Royal Christmas Stay, Christmas Day Royal Buffet, Christmas Party Nights, Christmas Party Spa Packages, New Years Eve Celebrations and of course Booker Rewards. Whatever your requirements this Christmas Season, we are sure that Dun Laoghaire and the Royal Marine Hotel will be able to meet with them. Call the Team on +353 (0)1 2300030 or Email For Christmas & New Years 2012: http://www. The Royal Marine Hotel includes: 228 well-appointed bedrooms, 14 Dedicated Meeting Rooms, Carlisle Conference Centre, Martello Banqueting Suite, The Pier Health Club & sansanaSPA and various Food & Beverage facilities include the Bay Lounge, Hardy’s Bar, Laurels Bar, Pavilion Bar, Dún Steak & Seafood Restaurant Transportation: Dublin City is accessible via the DART, which is within 2 minutes walking distance from the Royal Marine Hotel. A coach service is available at the door of the Royal Marine Hotel, to/from Dublin Airport, taking 40 minutes via the Port Tunnel and costs only €8 single or €14 return journey.

Our luxurious sansanaSPA features Nine Treatment Room, Thermals Suites, Unique Waterbed Relaxation Room, Rock Sauna, Mud Room, Experience Showers, Aroma Steam Room, Manicure & Pedicure Suite. All Hotel residents have Complimentary use of The Pier Health Club. Things To Do: Dun Laoghaire is a busy coastal town with lots to do. Whether it’s shopping, eating, drinking, going to the cinema or theatre, walking, water sports, hiking or horse riding, you will find it all within easy reach whilst staying in Dun Laoghaire. For more information on the area, please click on the link: Previous guests of the Hotel include Frank Sinatra, Laurel & Hardy and Charlie Chaplin. Queen Victoria had a 16 course breakfast when she arrived off the boat at Dun Laoghaire and even Michael Collins is believed to have hidden out in Room 210 with Kitty Kiernan. For more information: Call the Team on: +353 (0)1 2300030 Email: Website: Facebook: Twitter:


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Emotional Stress: Causes and Cures Gemma could not believe that she had been cured of Irritable Bowel Syndrome. Eve has successfully come off antidepressant medications and has been well for more than two years. Fionnoula was able to reduce her medications for Ulcerative Colitis despite the doctors saying it would not be possible to do.

What was common among the three ladies? Answer: They had addressed their ‘Emotional Stress’. According to a study by the Canadian Institute of Stress, prescription drug usage fell by 32%, doctor’s office visits reduced by 53% and grievances reduced by 32% after stress management training. Emotional Stress is responsible for most physical and mental health problems. When you have a road traffic accident or feel bullied at work or in school, your body experiences emotional stress. This causes the body to produce stress hormones that are linked to the body’s memory system. When you later remember the traumatic event, the images come up in the mind to produce stress hormones againtriggered this time by just the memory of the event. This happen because the emotional effects of the trauma remain in the

body at an unconscious level.

Even if you ‘consciously’ forget the traumas, the ‘unconscious’ mind remembers them. The problem arises when one part of the nervous system ‘remembers’ the events and the other part is trying to ‘forget’ them. This clash between the two systems is the reason of Emotional Stress and consequent weakening of the immune system. This causes physical illnesses including many digestive problems. This‘fight’ causes hormonal and neurotransmitter disturbance and is responsible for many psychiatric conditions including depression, anxiety, addictions, eating disorders and PTSD. This is called the ‘chemical imbalance’ by doctors. At BR Clinic Stress Centre, we are able to integrate medication, meditation, coaching and nutrition to bring a harmony in the body. We are also able to provide educational talks and training programmes to groups of public and therapists. BR Clinic Stress Centre is based on Clonsilla Road in Dublin15. Phone number is 018242666. Website: Email:


The Informer

All about Dublin 2

Edited by Zoz

Firsthand History

The Pinking Dindies

In the late 1700s Dublin was infested by an organised body of dissolute young men, individually, you would not suspect them. They normally operated at night and in groups and they were so well prepared for battle that the " ancient and quiet watchmen," of the city were no match for them. The 'pinking dindies' made a rule to be well dressed, and, to a man, they were skilful swordsmen. Their plan of attack was thus:- Two of them, walking arm-in-arm, jostled the victim they meant for prey; then, with their swords in their scabbards, so that the point just protruded, they pricked him in various parts, and if he did not throw down his watch and money, two others came and took it by force; whilst two more in reserve were on the watch to give alarm if any persons approached. In that case they disappeared, and had their hidingplaces adjacent, doors open; so, that if the punctured man was willing to pursue, he knew not where to go, but was glad to get away, bleeding and terrified. The last achievement I recollect of one

of these redoubted champions, was a robbery he committed, at eleven o'clock at night, in Fleet Street, on a merchant, who had reached home, but had not knocked at his door. The robber presented a pistol at him, the merchant delivered his watch and money, and the freebooter escaped ; but the merchant recognised him as a person with whom he had been well acquainted, having been at the same school with him. The next morning he had him arrested and committed to prison. The jury pronounced him guilty and he was sentenced to death, later changed to transportation for life to America. It appears incredible that such a practice should be endured for years without any effort to check it effectually. But the party of pinking dindies were never finally put down until the police was established. That useful institution, though decried by many, was more salutary, and timely to the city of Dublin, than any plan that has been since devised, coercive or otherwise.

n Busáras. Officially it is called Árus Mhic Dhiarmada, after the executed 1916 leader Seán Mac Diarmada, Dubliners just call it Busárus ('the bus building' as Béarla). While Bus Éireann are the most visible tenants, the building is the HQ of the Department of Social Protection, and the bus company merely rents space. Designed by Michael Scott (he also designed Donnybrook Garage and the Abbey Theatre), it was completed in 1953. From 1959 to 1995 Busárus was home to the Eblana Theatre.

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The Informer

eauty Notes

with Kathleen Rowley

Pukka Ayurveda arrives ‘Pukka’ is a term many foodies will associate with celebrity chef Jamie Oliver as he modestly describes the tastiness of one of his dishes while enthusiastically drenching all dishes in oil. Pukka is also Hindi for ‘authentic’ and a new range of products reflects this philosophy as now organic skincare enthusiasts can celebrate the arrival of Pukka Ayurveda products to Ireland. With the growing understanding that what you put on your skin is as important as what you eat, Pukka Ayurveda’s Organic Skincare Collection offers up to 100% certified organic ingredients that are all naturally highly effective. Some of the key products of the range are the Nourishing Brightener and Firming Face Oil.

Graham Connor's Movie Advice Looper HHHHH Directed by Rian Johnson. Starring Joseph Gordon Levitt, Bruce Willis & Emily Blunt In the not too distant future there are hitmen called loopers, targets that are sent back 30 years through time. One day Joe is sent to take care of a routine job when he realizes the man he has been sent to kill is himself, 30 years older. I love time travel movies and the mind bending complexity of them – Back to the Future, Frequency and Primer being brilliant examples. I also find Bruce Willis immensely watchable so the omens for this film seemed great. Thankfully this film is more than great, it’s fantastic! Looper is the kind of intelligent sci/fi film that we have been waiting for since Minority Report. The cast is uniformly excellent, although Joseph Gordon Levitt’s prosthetics to make him look like Bruce Willis are a little off putting. Levitt and Blunt also play out a believable romance which so often in slick sci/fi films gets overlooked. There are numerous moments that stand out, too many to mention – you’ll just have to see them for yourself. Looper is not this generations' The Matrix. It’s better and can proudly stand in the company of Inception and not feel out of place. Advice: Not to be missed!

The Campaign HHHHH Directed by Jay Roach. Starring Will Ferrell and Zach Galifianakis. Long term Congressman Cam Brady, following a major public gaffe, finds himself standing against a rival candidate for the first time in his life, the bumbling Marty Huggins. Can Cam win once more and is Marty as dumb as he seems? Jay Roach gave us Meet the Parents. Will Ferrell gave us Anchorman. Zach Galifianakis gave us The Hangover. In the three main players we have a wealth of comic talent and that is what makes The Campaign such a disappointment as it never seems able to raise more than a chuckle. The film has plenty of moments but not all of them seem to work, many stuck between political satire and slapstick – often getting both confused. The Campaign gets by on the likeability factor of its two leads but for me Will Ferrell has been on a downward spiral for quite some time and he seems on auto pilot here. Zach Galifianakis carries many of the funnier moments but he isn’t a leading man and doesn’t cut it I’m afraid. The Campaign is not a total disaster of a film, but it should have been so much better given the talent involved. Advice: Wait for DVD.

17 Specially blended by Ayurvedic Practitioner Sebastian Pole, Pukka Ayurveda’s Nourishing Brightener- Organic Bilberry and Almond Freshly Ground Exfoliator illuminates dull and lacklustre skin. Bursting with 100% ethically sourced organic fruits, roots, leaves and seeds which gently exfoliate and deeply cleanse, Nourishing Brightener is the most innovative treatment in the collection and is activated by blending with moisture. To suit individual skin needs, combine with water, toner, oil or cream and transform the rich earthy formula into a beautiful purple paste that uniquely exfoliates, brightens and nourishes all-in-one step. Pukka Ayurveda Firming Face Oil has already achieved cult status, garnering awards and accolades for its skin transforming action. This hardworking skin repair hero, blends rich seed oils and plant extracts to condition, plump and enhance tone and texture, restoring lost luminosity. This luxurious elixir blends potent antioxidant herbs and essentials oils to feed depleted skin with beneficial fatty acids including evening primrose, hemp, sesame, rosehip, starflower, poppy and wheat germ, all chosen for their restorative action. Pukka Ayurveda Firming Face Oil Pukka targets the deeper layers of the skin to leave it dewy, smooth and supple.

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The Informer

Ask the A persistant cough Pharmacist

Q: I have had a persistent cough for some time and have been taking Exputex to treat it. I also get breathless if I go out walking or gardening. I thought I needed an antibiotic but the doctor has said there is no infection there. She has prescribed an Atrovent inhaler to treat it. I find it difficult to use because of rheumatism in my hands. She says that I have COPD. Is that the same as emphysema? Is there an alternative that I can use? Should I continue using the Exputex? I smoke about 20 cigarettes a day and she says I need to quit but I’m finding it very difficult. A: COPD is short for Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease. It is a disease in which the airways become narrowed leading to shortness of breath. There is no cure for COPD although it can be treated. Broadly speaking COPD consists of two related conditions, chronic bronchitis which affects the larger airways, and emphysema which affects the alveoli which are sacs in the lungs which pass oxygen into the blood stream. Chronic bronchitis and emphysema frequently exist together, although one or the other may be predominant. A persistant cough with lots of mucus is often a sign of chronic bronchitis. There are a number of factors that can lead to COPD including air pollution, genetic make-up and occupational dust exposure. However, by far the leading cause of COPD is tobacco smoking. Up to 90% of cases of COPD are primarily caused by tobacco. Quitting smoking

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Although COPD cannot be cured, the likelihood of it getting much worse can be greatly reduced by quitting smoking. If you are finding it difficult to quit, ask your pharmacist about nicotine-replacement therapy such as gums, patches or inhalers. If you still find that you cannot quit after giving this a trial, ask your doctor if prescribed tablets would be suitable. You may also benefit from a range of devices and household aids that limit your exposure to dust around the house that may be worsening your condition. A medicine such as Exputex, which reduces the viscosity (thickness) of mucus in the lungs may be useful in COPD although often it has no effect. Ask your doctor if it is appropriate for you to stop it. As regards the inhaler, ask your pharmacist for advice in using it. It could be that you are not using it properly. If, after this you still find it difficult to use, your doctor may prescribe a different inhaler such as Spiriva which is available as a dry-powder inhaler or a device called a Respimat which may be easier to use and has the advantage that it only needs to be used once a day. Atrovent is also available as nebules which are highly effective although they can be inconvenient to use. Atrovent is in a class of drug called anticholinergics which work as bronchodilators, meaning that they open up the airways in the lungs. Although a medication like a Ventolin inhaler

many people with mild COPD. However, they may be used in case of an exacerbation or in more severe disease, either as an inhaler or in nebule form. Sometimes steroids will be given in tablet form which can be useful in an exacerbation although are more likely to cause unwanted effects if given in the long term as tablets. Controlling the breathlessness

also works as a bronchodilator, this class of drug (called a beta-2 agonist) is generally regarded as less effective in COPD. However, an anticholinergic and a beta-2 agonist are often used in combination in an inhaler such as Combivent The earlier that COPD is diagnosed and treated, the less likely it is to progress to severe disease. You should use any treatment prescribed as directed even if you are feeling that you do not need it. If you experience any side effects from any medication, discuss it with your doctor or pharmacist as there may be steps you can take to minimise side effects, or alternative treatments available if this is not possible. Inhaled steroids work to reduce inflammation in the lungs although they may not have any benefit for

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If you have COPD, you will usually be treated by a multidisciplinary team made up of doctors, nurses, physiotherapists, dieticians, occupational therapists, social workers and clinical psychologists. If you are overweight it is important to lose weight, although conversely if you are underweight it is important to eat properly, possibly taking additional nutritional supplements to build your weight and your strength up. A physiotherapist may also train you in breathing exercises to control the breathlessness that can be present in COPD. COPD is a major, largely preventable cause of death and disability. Its major cause is smoking and there is no cure. Remember, it is never too early or too late to quit smoking. If you find that you cannot do it alone (and remember, many people can’t), ask your doctor or pharmacist for more advice.

With Eoin Meany

Eoin Meany works as a pharmacist in McCabe's Pharmacy, Ridgewood Avenue, Swords. If you have a question you would like answered for next issue, please send it by email to or by post to McCabe's Pharmacy, Ridgewood, Swords, Co. Dublin.

Disclaimer: The advice you have been given by the pharmacist should not be regarded as a clinically accurate diagnosis of any disease or a guarantee that a particular medicine is safe for you to take. The advice given is based solely on the limited amount of information provided and so should not be regarded as a substitute for a face to face consultation with a pharmacist, doctor or other health professional who is personally familiar with your medical history.

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The Informer

Dublin Adjusting to job loss and unemployment Advice Our jobs are much more than just the way we earn a living. They provide financial security to ourselves and our family. They give us a sense of identity, value and purpose within our society. They support our plans and dreams for the future and give us important structure and routine to our daily lives. Losing our job can come as a shock and be severely upsetting and stressful. We have to try and come to terms with what has happened while at the same time look for other work. Below are some suggestions to help with the adjustment to a job loss.

starting your own business or part-time / voluntary work. Prioritise your areas of preference before developing a plan of action.

6. Develop a plan: Once you have prioritised areas of interest, develop a more structured plan. Break this plan into manageable and achievable tasks. Prioritise your tasks and identify the steps you need to take to achieve them. Pinpoint any potential obstacles and decide how you will manage them. Review and adjust your plan as you proceed. 7. Develop a routine: Establishing a routine provides a sense of organisation to your day. Try to have a daily plan, begin and end at the same times each day and make sure that, just like your working week, you give yourself time off to enjoy activities.

1. Allow your feelings: Feelings such as shock, anger, shame, fear, helplessness and grief are natural reactions to job loss. Be easy on yourself and give yourself time to adjust. Find ways to acknowledge and express your experience in a healthy way. Talk to someone trusted, write down how you are feeling, meet with others in the same situation. 2. Look for support: Turn to those you know and trust and let them know how you are feeling. As unemployment can affect the whole family, let them know what is happening and involve them in decisions and changes that need to be made. You may be surprised by the amount of support you receive. Consider contacting your GP or a psychologist/counsellor for additional support.

By Kevin Leech, Counselling Psychologist

3. Take care of your health & keep active: Get enough, regular sleep, eat a balanced diet and make sure to get regular exercise. Your hobbies and interests are vital to you as they can provide even a temporary distraction and relief from your situation. Keep socially active and maintain contacts with your friends.

8. Build your networks: Finding others who are in the same situation can reduce the feeling of being on your own. They can help you create ideas for your future. Consider making a list of people that you know and inform them that you are available for work.

4. Managing your finances: Plan how you are going to manage your finances. Consider seeking advice from Money Advice and Budgeting Service (MABS) or contacting the Department of Social Protection & Welfare. 5. Explore your options: Unemployment can be an opportunity to review your career and future direction. Explore your options including retraining,

9. Be patient and keep going: Adjustment to a job loss can take time so be patient with yourself and persevere even when things are at their most stressful. You are not alone. There are many hard-working, skilled and experienced people who have lost their jobs to the current economic recession. Kevin Leech B.Sc.(Hons) Psych., M.Sc.C.Psych. Counselling Psychologist. Tel : 085 1479443 Email : Web:

Return of the dark evenings – time to think about Electric Gates? NOW that the wet dark evening are returning, maybe it is time to think about why Electric Gates are a good idea? Most homes that you pass that have manual gates (the ones you have to open and close your self) tend to leave the gates open all the time – why? Because it is probably too much hassle to get out of the car to open or close them. If it raining, or cold and dark, or you have a crying child in the car, you are not going to walk back to close them. Where’s the point in having gates if you are not going to use them? Automated gates make life that little bit easier. Just think of the other automated systems we have in our homes, the dishwasher (washes and dries the dishes) the heating controls (brings the heat on so our homes are nice and warm and we have hot water when we get home) Sky plus (though I’m not allowed it, makes sure we don’t miss our favourite soaps or other TV programs). Like any automated system in our homes, before you get it, you probably don’t appreciate how much easier it makes life, and once you have it for a couple of weeks, you wouldn’t be without it. Electric or Automated gates are exactly the same. You may say to your self “Now why would someone want automated gates?” I remember years ago, my father saying “why do we need a dish-washer? Sure it only takes a few minutes to wash them?” After a few nights washing up after the dinner he went and bought one (there was ten of us by the way!). ■ Electric gates mean that the gates are always closed, keeping strangers away from your door. Unwanted callers can be dismissed at the gate rather than confronting them at your front door. ■ Closed gates keep children safe away from traffic on busy streets. ■ An open gate is an open invitation to a would-be intruder. A closed automated gate puts another line of defence around you home. A potential intruder would have to climb over a closed gate or wall to gain access – making them a little more obvious. It’s another deterrent.

■ A closed gate keeps your car safe in the drive. ■ High Quality automatic gate systems, professionally installed by a friendly and reliable gate automation company add value to your home. ■ On coming home on a cold, wet, dark night you only have to push a button and the gates open ahead of you and once in the drive, they’ll close automatically.

So why call AutoGate Ireland? An Electric Gate Company you can Trust!

■ We only install high quality gate automation systems that are reliable, strong, secure and suited to the size of gate you have or want to have. ■ We will never compromise on quality for the sake of cost. Just look at our gates and see how heavy the steel is compared to our competitors who use the lightest steel available. We use heavy gauge solid steel for our gates which will still be in use for 20 years. ■ We are now offering a 3 year warranty with all our gate automation systems. ■ All our automation systems are professionally installed so that we guarantee you will be completely satisfied and really pleased with your new automated gates.

Get a Great Deal!

We provide a free quotation, free information, and since it is September and you may have children going back to school or college, so anyone who sends an enquiry through the web-site contact page will receive a 10% discount on their gates and automation for the next 6 weeks. T’s & C’s apply but no tricky stuff. Send us a message through the contact page or Adrian @ and we will send you our Free Report on all you should know before you buy Electric Gates. We will also send you a Free Home Security Report as a bonus as we are now getting back to the dark evenings and need to make our homes more secure. Thanks for reading, Adrian.

Adrian McGivern, AutoGate Ireland

■ We provide a high quality service and excellent value for money. ■ We are really, really nice people to do business with. We treat our customers as we would like to be treated ourselves, as we would like our parents to be treated in fact. Honestly, give me, Adrian McGivern a call and find out for yourself. ■ Ask any of our past customers would they recommend us? Or how they found doing business with us? Have a read through some of the testimonials on our web site. ■ We also do Repairs to all existing systems – even ones we did not install. 3 CLANWILLIAM TERRACE. DUBLIN 2

086-8560063 / 01-6424214

STOP the Burglar NOW! Your home is a target for opportunist thieves unless you make it difficult for them. DON'T make it Easy for them.

THE dark evenings are back and burglary and theft is increasing as the daylight draws shorter. A consequence of the slow economy is that opportunist theft is very common. Most burglaries and thefts from home and businesses are opportunist. Dark driveways and back gardens make it easier for someone to make their way around your home unseen - so security lighting will help eliminate this by lighting up the area around your home. An open window - even thought it might be on the first floor - will provide easy access if the burglar can get to it. A friend of mine thought it was okay to leave a very small kitchen window slightly open as the sash was so small - but the burglars put a small child in through the window to open the door from inside. Keep windows securely locked. Window locks can secure the window in the vent position so you have fresh air and a secure window. Don't leave keys under mats or bins. this is the first place someone will look. If a burglar gets into your home with a key - your insurance is invalid and you have no cover. If your child or friend needs a key - have one cut and give it to them - or have a digital lock fitted - so no keys are required. If you have PVC doors make sure you have good quality locks fitted. Most break-ins walk through the back door. All new doors fitted come with a cheep un-secure lock. Sliding patio doors should have a bolt lock fitted - they don't come as standard. If you have an alarm - make sure it works correctly - then make sure you use it. If you don't have an alarm - consider having one fitted. If you can afford it, have a communicator fitted to it - this will call you if your alarm goes off. The vast majority of homes do not need expensive 24 hour monitoring - you can do this monitoring yourself if you have a phone! You don't even need to have a landline. Use

your alarm at night as many burglaries occur when the occupants are in bed asleep. If you have a gate - close it and consider locking it. An automated electric gate will provide security and convenience. If you don't have a gate - consider getting one - it is a physical deterrent and makes it more difficult for intruders to access your home.It is also good at keeping politicians away from your door! A CCTV system will record any movement outside your home or allows you to see what is happening outside without having to leave your favourite chair. It is also a deterrent to burglars who don't want their faces to appear on Crime Watch or in the local Garda Station. If you are a business owner who might be a target for a robbery at home, you should consider anti-ram devices such a an automatic bollard or Gate Anti Ram Device - as these will make it very difficult for even a determined intruder to access your property. A door intercom allows you to speak to a caller at the door without having to open it. WIN a free door intercom on our web site for a person you think deserves it. We are going to give away three intercom systems in October and three in November. Visit www.AutoGateIreland for details. These security tips have been brought to you by Adrian McGivern of AutoGate Ireland. For more tips on making your home or business secure visit www.AutoGateIreland. com or call Adrian on 01-6424214.

Less than half of mortgage holders know how much they pay for mortgage protection, says Amá survey


✔ 45% of mortgage-holders do not know how much they spend on mortgage protection each month ✔ 11% shop around for mortgage protection – compared with 72% for car insurance ✔ Mortgage protection rates can vary by up to 37% between providers ABOUT one-third of Irish adults have a mortgage but less than half of them know how much they pay each month for mortgage protection, according to the results of a new survey carried out by Amárach Research on behalf of, Ireland’s leading low-cost financial services and insurance provider. The survey, conducted among 1,000 adults, shows that 34% of adults have a mortgage. But when they were asked whether they knew how much they pay each month for mortgage protection, only 55% of them say they did. The amount mortgage-holders spend each month on mortgage protection varies widely, according to the survey, with 28% saying they pay more than €101, 8% paying between €76 and €100, 19% paying between €51 and €75, 27% paying between €26 and €50, and €18 paying up to €25. When all adults were asked whether they knew that they could switch mortgage protection and life assurance cover, just 57% of them said they did. However, just 11% said they had shopped around for mortgage protection in the past two years com-

pared with 72% for car insurance.

1890 989 886

Andrew Nevin, a Director in, said the number of people who do not know how much their mortgage protection cover is costing is ‘alarmingly high’. ‘Struggling householders can free up their money to cover essential bills and boost disposable income by saving hundreds annually on mortgage protection. ‘’s own analysis shows that mortgage protection rates can differ between providers by up to 37% so clearly significant savings can be made,’ said Mr Nevin. Last year,’s average customer saved at least €492 by switching provider. ‘That is a very significant amount, particularly considering figures this week from the Irish League of Credit Unions showed that more than one-third of consumers have had to borrow to pay their household bills in the past year,’ said Mr Nevin. According to the most recent figures from the Central Bank, there are more than 760,000 private residential mortgage accounts in Ireland.

PFP Financial Services Limited (trading as SmartQuotes) is regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland. All quotes subject to underwriting and acceptance by the relevant insurer. The `492 savings is based on the average savings made by all new clients who took out a policy through us in 2011.


Animal Tracks with Fionnuala Rogers, DSPCA

Halloween and your pets Halloween can be a great time of the year with all the costumes, sweets and games but don’t forget to spare a thought for your furry four legged friend. Here are some facts and tips which may help you and your pet have hassle free festivities. Chocolate and all those lovely sweets Make sure it is only you who can tuck into all the goodies, dogs and cats can become very ill if they eat chocolate or sweets. Theobromine is a component found in chocolate and it can be poisonous to your pet. If your animal gets their paws on chocolate then we would advise you to ring your vets immediately for advice. Having the type and amount of chocolate that your pet has eaten can be very useful to the vet in assessing the needs of your animal. Worried pets As we all know Halloween can be a very loud time of year with all the fireworks and trick or treating. There are various ways in which you can help minimise the stress to your pet. • Provide a quiet safe place for your pet to hide if they are feeling scared • Do not indulge in your pet’s nervous behaviour as this will confuse them into thinking they are being rewarded by this behaviour. • Keep windows and curtains closed so your pet cannot see or hear the fireworks • Try not to react to the loud noises yourself as

this may heighten you pets anxiousness

Going for walks • Try to go for walks during the day time as fireworks and other scary noises are less likely. • Use a shorter than normal lead as people in costumes can be quite frightening for your pet and may trigger a fearful or aggressive response. Decorations Pets can become tangled in wires and leads so ensure they are safely assembled. Decorations can be alluring to pets and they may break or eat them which in turn can cause injury or illness. Once all decorations and electrical cables are out of reach you can your pet can enjoy the new spooky feel to your home. Lastly, every year hundreds of pets go missing each Halloween and this can be a very distressing time for pet owners. Our advice would be to keep your pets well secured in your house or garden and ensure they are all microchipped and have a collar and tag on them at all times. Animal cruelty is common at this time of year so please be careful not to leave your pet outside unattended where they can be stolen. If you have any worries or concerns please feel free to call us for some helpful advice on 01 4994780 or check out

Arts Angle

The Informer

With LA Speedwing

Sculpture put in its context Considered by some the ‘Jewel in the Crown’ of Northside Dublin the National Botanic Gardens will open its doors yet again to the Sculpture in Context 2012 for its consecutive 26th year. Sculpture in Context has, over the years, staged highly acclaimed visual arts events at venues such as Fernhill Gardens, the Conrad Hotel, Kilmainham Gaol, the Irish Management Institute, Dublin Castle, Farmleigh House and the National Botanic Gardens. The gardens are not only a quiet oasis on the outskirts of Dublin, they also give the artist the rare opportunity of realising large scale work in a botanical haven. It also gives the visitor an opportunity to ramble and explore, sometimes finding sculptures in the most unusual places. The sculptures are displayed throughout the gardens, ponds, Great Palm House, and Curvilinear Range, with the smaller works exhibited in the gallery above the visitors’ centre. Some of the sculptures are highly original. From Michelle Maher’s “Symmetry” flower heads installed on the surface of the water to “Bobbing Apples” by Ayelet Lalor, and the “Migration” coral-like sea creatures by

Petrina Shortt, viewers will be able to wander in a maze of creativity. There are sculptures that children will enjoy with the large eyeballs “A good Gawk” by Sandra McCowen and the cuddly “Bears Necessities” sculptures by Liz Walsh and Clodagh Murphy. Other participating artists this year include Gavin Friday, Peter Killeen, Cliodna Cussen, Sonja Landweer, Liz Nilsson, Brigitta Seck, Breda Marron, Leo Higgins, Jackie Ball. Claire Halpin and Madeleine Hellier, Peter Koning, Kathleen Standen, Jane Murtagh and many many more. Where: National Botanic Gardens, Glasnevin, Dublin 9. When: 6 Sept - 20th of October. Opening Hours: Monday – Friday 9am to 5pm Saturday & Sunday 10am – 6pm Admission Free. Women’s fiction and children’s stories available for 0.99 cts on Smashwords from this author.

Women’s fiction and children’ s stories available for 0.99 cts on Smashwords from L.A. Speedwing



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The Informer

Dundrum In Brief...

with Martin Flanagan

Apple map glitch locates airport in Dundrum

Local residents expressed surprise after a glitch in Apple’s maps application mistakenly identified an airfield located in the middle of Dundrum. The error occurred after Apple updated its operating system on products such as the iPhone and iPad. Commenting on the blunder, local Minister Alan Shatter said: “I know on occasion mistakes can be made and I am surprised to discover that Airfield, which is in the centre of my constituency in Dundrum, has, in Apple’s new operating system iOS6 maps application, been designated with the image of an aircraft. Clearly the designation is not only wrong but is dangerously misleading in that it could result in a pilot, unfamiliar with the area, in an emergency situation and without other available information, attempting a landing.” He added: “I have arranged that Apple be informed of the error and requested that it be urgently corrected. There are a variety of possible alternative images that could be utilised such a cow, a goat, a sheep, a flower or any indeed other type of plant as Airfield operates a nursery.” In another mistake identified on the maps application update, Dublin Zoo was mistakenly located in Temple Bar.

New Wi-Fi service in Dundrum Town Centre

Dundrum diners will be provided with a Wi-Fi service at the newly re-launched First Floor Bar & Brasserie at Harvey Nichols in the Dundrum Town Centre. Irish Wi-Fi provider Bitbuzz announced that it was providing the service, which has been live for a number of weeks in both the bar and brasserie and the cafe at Harvey Nichols. Customers will be able to use the Wi-Fi service to browse the shopping centre’s app and familiarise with the different stores and latest deals. “Over the past couple of years we have noticed a growing demand for fast, efficient Wi-Fi from our customers in both dining establishments and we are pleased to now offer this service through our partnership with Bitbuzz. A large proportion of our customers have smartphones and the feedback from them so far has been great,” said Harvey Nichols Dublin director Kenny Robertson. Bitbuzz recently announced that it has now reached 411 hotspots and is recording 10,000 peak logins per day on busy days across Ireland and the UK.

New name for Stillorgan shopping centre

THE South Dublin shopping centre in Stillorgan has been rebranded as Stillorgan Village with the addition of a number of new retailers. The centre was hit by a boost in popularity for Dundrum Shopping Centre. But in the past 12 months, a total of nine new brands have been added to Stillorgan including Donnybrook Fair, Kilkenny, Ecco, O'Farrell School & Sports, Kilkenny and Connect Hearing. The new Starbucks is due to open in October and will create 15 new jobs.

Spooky thrills and surprises at Samhain 2012

Dundrum residents have been invited to take part in this year’s Halloween event Samhain 2012. The free event will take place on Sunday, October 28th in Marlay Park. It promises to be a family oriented day full of spooky thrills and surprises. The forest at Marlay Park will come alive on the night with ‘freaky fog’, ‘ghastly spiders’ and ‘skeletons’. There will also be chilling appearances by the ‘spine chilling boat house preachers’ and menacing ‘witches’ and ‘demons’. The event will feature atmospheric lighting, sound effects and smoke that will make the experience all the more exciting for families who attend. The Haunted Woods will be open between 3.30pm and 8.30pm and entry is only free for those who acquire a wristband in advance. Wristbands can be collected at the Dun Laoghaire Rathdown market on Saturday October 20 and Saturday October 27. Entry times for the Haunted Walk will take place every hour from 3.30pm to 7.30pm on October 28. Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council have recommended that people avail of public transport to travel to the events as there will be limited car parking available.

Have you got news for us?

Dundrum Informer Oct 12