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Raheny Informer 15,000 copies delivered monthly

March/April 2014 • Unit 55, Western Parkway Business Park, Ballymount, Dublin 12 • Tel: 01 813 8786 • Email: info@informer.ie • Web: www.informer.ie

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Campaigners call for new Stardust inquiry

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"They are seeking an independent expert to examine the new facts" Support is growing in north Dublin this month as locals demand that a new inquiry be opened into the Stardust fire. The tragedy which took place in the Artane nightclub in mid February 1981 By Ed Diggins is seen as one of Ireland’s biggest disasters where 48 people lost their lives worth of evidence. “There were no photographs of the with almost another 220 injured, some kitchen, the remains of the first floor seriously. Last month, the department of store, the lamp room, the purported Justice stated that there was no new basement, the cold room, the ground evidence available that warranted a floor stores or the ground exit passage to the door below the first floor exit new investigation. However campaigners now believe and the external escape stairway. This that this stance should be change and is new evidence not considered by in both a statement to the national Keane,” McGrath said. media and a speech in the Dáil Éireann, Differences local public representative Finian Other differences between the origiMcGrath called on Minister Alan Shatter for action, on behalf of the nal and subsequent reports in 2008 and 2009 are also considered as new evivictims’ families. “Today I raise the issue of new and dence which has led to calls for the important evidence relating to the coroner to reopen the inquests into the Stardust fire tragedy and I ask the cause of death for all 48 victims. “The families' position is quite clear. Minister to examine the new facts and They are seeking an independent evidence,” said Deputy McGrath. It is claimed that the original Keane expert to examine the new facts I have enquiry in 1981 only presented 100 of presented, somebody who would go the 500 available photographs of the through the new evidence, link it with scene in its transcript of 122 days’ the previous reports and deal with

Renewables save us €1 billion Green Scene - Page 4

particular issues that arise. “There is much hurt and sadness, we need to be compassionate but we also need to be open to the idea of getting the truth and the facts,” said McGrath. Meanwhile two members of the Stardust Victims’ families entered and refused to leave government buildings demanding to meet Taoiseach Enda Kenny following comments he made about the investigation. Their protest fell on deaf ears as Mr. Kenny was not in a position to meet them which led to a backlash from campaigners. “We are disappointed that the Taoiseach has failed once again to see the seriousness of the issues we have raised and are angered that he would not meet us over the past day whilst we were just a stone’s throw away from his office,” said one campaign member. “That he didn’t think it important to meet us and frustrated attempts to have the Stardust Tragedy discussed in the Dáil chamber this morning shows the true nature of these people - they don’t care about justice,” she said.

What causes the Northern Lights?

The Sky over Dublin - Page 6

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The Informer The Informer

Raheny In Brief... Artane abuse payout

The High Court has this month awarded a substantial payout of €370,000 to a man following severe abuse he suffered almost four decades ago. The man now in 40's told the court excruciating details of the abuse which started when he was eight years old and lasted until he was 13 while he was under the care of the Christian Brothers at their facility in Artane. The court heard how the brother who assaulted the victim had previously come to the attention of his superiors for other incidents and he had since died. Mr Justice Kevin Cross slammed the order for not controlling the brother in the manner which was expected of them and that they had failed "to take any steps whatsoever to supervise the brother or to prevent his access to a vulnerable child." In describing the case as one of the worse he has seen, Justice Cross said that the order had "full knowledge that the brother had been, in the past, guilty of child abuse of young boys," and rejected their claims that they had not been negligent.

Upcoming local events calendar

Starting off with sport and two local organisations have announced details of their upcoming school break camps. First off the Clontarf Cricket Club are running their Easter camp for kids aged 6 to 11 and this will take place from April 22nd to 25th , from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. each day. Cost is €55 per child and parents who are interested in registering their kids or needing more information can contact apsports25@gmail.com to do so. The Raheny GAA camps will take place from

with Ed Diggins Monday the 14th of April to Thursday 17th and caters for children between 4 and 12-years-old. Anybody who registers before the 4th of April will receive a €5 discount on the €45 registration fee. Full details are available on the clubs website www. rahenygaa.ie The St Francis Hospice Raheny is hosting its 13th Kaleidoscope Palliative Care Conference in the coming months. The event which focuses on "life and living at the heart of palliative care" takes place over two days on Wednesday the 28th and Thursday 29th of May, at Dublin Castle. More details are available at www.sfh.ie where all interested parties can sign up and register for a special discounted price before March 28th. Finally the Mount Temple Parents' Association would like to remind everybody that their annual fundraising table quiz will take place on Thursday March 27th at The Clontarf Rugby Club, starting at 8pm. For more information, please contact maryorinn@gmail.com. All funds raised at the event go to Mount Temple School.

Callely enters guilty plea

Local public servant Ivor Callely has this week pleaded guilty at the Dublin Circuit Criminal Court for fraudulently claiming expenses. The former Minister from St Lawrences Road, Clontarf was faced with charges under Section 26 of the Theft and Fraud Offences Act, charges that can receive a maximum prison sentence of up to ten years or a fine. It was claimed that Mr. Callely used invoices from three phone companies as false instruments at Leinster House for receipt of expenses for handsets and equipment, under the Oireachtas members direct

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n Recently in D-Light Studios, Dublin, the four Life Style Sports Style Ambassadors –Dave Kearney (Leinster), Conor Murray (Munster), Ian Madigan (Leinster) and Peter O'Mahony (Munster) enjoyed an afternoon of banter and inter provincial rivalry as they battled it out in the inaugural Life Style Sports Rumble. www.lifestylesports.com.

purchase mobile phone scheme. It is believed that Gardaí launched an inquiry following an official complaint by former Green Party TD Paul Gogarty. He is due for sentencing in late July.

Pieta House campaign goes global

London and Sydney will host Darkness Into Light events this year as Pieta House’s flagship fundraiser is set to go global. The suicide prevention charity will, this May, mark its sixth year of Darkness into Light events.

Taking place in the early hours of Saturday, May 10th, Darkness Into Light is a unique, early morning experience which begins in darkness at 4.15am, as thousands of people walk or run a 5km route while dawn is breaking. The early dawn represents hope and is symbolic of the work of Pieta House; bringing people from darkness back into the light. Proceeds from last year’s event helped to fund Pieta House’s recent expansion into counties Cork, Galway and Kerry. Registration for Darkness Into Light is available online now at dil.pieta.ie

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The Informer

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Editor: Niall Gormley • Address: Unit 55, Western Parkway Business Park, Ballymount, Dublin 12 01 813 8786 • news@informer.ie • www.informer.ie Sales Director: Declan Keane • Mobile: 087 9145073 For Advertising - Email: sales@informer.ie • Telephone: 01 813 8786

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4

The Informer

Green Scene

Pylons, turbines and greens Power, health, environment, tourism and of course, always, climate. There are always more questions than answers. Last month Minister Jan O'Sullivan dropped something of a bombshell into the debate around our power supplies when she told Westmeath County Council that they had to revise their guidelines on where wind generators can be positioned from over a mile from the nearest home to a few hundred yards. I can understand why she did it. Ireland is a country of very scattered housing, not dense villages of the kind found in other countries, and there aren't many places you can throw a rock without hitting someone's windows. Even with Westmeath recommending cutaway bog as the best place for wind farms a glance at any satellite image shows how many farms and cottages crop up. Living next to a turbine

But who wants to live close to a wind farm with the noise of the turbines and flicker of the blades a constant background? I don't see the Minister snuggling up to one. And how safe are they really for wildlife and human beings? The jury is still out on the dangers to bird life - my statistician's brain doesn't like any of the studies I've seen so far but some species certainly seem to have difficulties with them. As for how they affect human beings, there are even more questions. I'll be honest, I find the sound of the blades, and the sculptural qualities of the structures, beautiful. But that's at a distance. At 300 yards I'm pretty certain I'd change my mind. Nor do I fancy the thought of pylons marching across the countryside bringing the energy from the wind farms to the cities at all attractive. Again, they can be seen as amazing art works, but more often we see them as an interruption between us and the landscape,

and they surely don't do anything to enhance our value as a tourist destination. Another area still up for debate is the impact of the magnetic fields generated by high voltage cables on the internal magnetic fields of the people and animals that live close to them. Of course we can avoid the damage to scenery, and minimise potential health impacts, by burying the cables, but this costs at least twice, and often four times as much, as overground cabling. And when something goes wrong the result can be catastrophic to homes and industry because for various technical reasons it is very hard to find where a cable break has happened underground. So when putting cables underground it is necessary to run a parallel system that can take up the slack if damage occurs. During the Christchurch earthquake the overground cable system largely survived, but the underground system was almost totally destroyed. We still haven't sorted out the problem of wind energy storage either - ideally one has a handy hydroelectric power system close by and when there is a wind power surplus one uses it to build up a head of water that can be used to generate power when it is needed. But we don't have much hydro of that type here in Ireland. Everything on the table

So back to Minister O'Sullivan's bombshell. It really is time to put all the research on health, environmental impacts, real economic costs, the value of public goods such as scenery, and whether wind power really is a good way of generating electricity onto the same very public table where we can all look at it and decide whether we are making decisions for the public good or protecting our individual back yards. We've made enough mistakes in the past - it would be really nice if we did one thing properly.

By Kathy Marsh, Sonairte Green news‌Green news‌Green news‌ Renewable energy has saved Ireland over â‚Ź1 billion in fossil fuel imports in past five years In the past five years renewable energy has saved over â‚Ź1 billion in fossil fuel imports; has reduced CO2 emissions by 12 million tonnes and has not added to consumers’ bills according to Dr Brian Motherway, of the SEAI. Motherway pointed out that Ireland is highly dependent on imported fossil fuels, spending â‚Ź6.5 billion per year on such imports. “This creates risk, and bleeds large amounts of money from the domestic economy. Wind and other renewables will allow us to gain greater energy independence, and massively reduce our carbon emissions as well.â€? “Those who argue that wind is expensive and unnecessary are quite simply wrong. Because Ireland has such a good wind energy resource, we can get cheap clean electricity from it. Making comparisons with other countries about wind effectiveness is not always valid. Ireland has a uniquely strong resource. We have one of the lowest support regimes and wind is not raising electricity prices.â€? Dr Motherway said that good planning is essential. “There are undoubtedly places where wind farms should not be built. That is why we have a transparent and functioning planning process, which has proven itself capable, time and again, of making objective decisions. Dr Motherway was speaking at the publication by SEAI of Renewable Energy in Ireland which shows good progress towards our renewable targets with over 7% of Ireland’s energy demand coming from renewables in 2012 resulting in â‚Ź250 million less expenditure on imported fossil fuels.

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DĂĄil Report

McGrath Launches New Bill for Children with Downs Syndrome Down’s Syndrome (Equality of Access) Bill 2013 Purpose of the Bill The purpose of this Bill is to afford statutory recognition to Down’s Syndrome as a ‘‘low incidence disorder’’ and in doing so to ensure that adequate provision is made for the resource teaching hours to be allocated to pupils with Down’s Syndrome. The terms of the Bill are principally based upon a Department of Education Circular — Special Education Circular (SP ED 02/05). Therefore, in addition to Down’s Syndrome, the Bill gives statutory effect to the allocation of resource teaching hours, in respect of all low incidence disabilities which are referred to in Appendix 1 of the Circular. Provisions of the Bill Section 1 defines 13 key terms which are relied upon

in section 2. These definitions very closely reflect the meanings which have been assigned to those terms in the Department of Education Circular, with the addition of a definition of Down’s Syndrome which though referenced in the Circular has not been defined. Section 2 requires that resource teaching hours, at the level specified in the Table which accompanies the section, shall be delivered by a school to each pupil who suffers from one or more of the 12 types of low incidence disability. Section 3 sets out the short title of the Bill. The Bill will come into effect immediately upon its enactment. Deputy Finian McGrath

ďż˝ Clontarf ward councillor Damian OFarrell (Ind) pictured with Dublin Bay North TD Finian McGrath (Ind).


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The Informer

Ask the Chronic pain Pharmacist

Q: I have been suffering chronic pain in my back, neck and legs since a car crash two years ago. I have been prescribed all sorts of painkillers, some of which help somewhat, although none have gotten rid of the pain entirely. I have had various scans and x-rays, and nothing major has been seen in any of them. My GP eventually sent me to a pain specialist who has prescribed me a medicine called Cymbalta. I have read that Cymbalta is an antidepressant, but I don’t really feel depressed.

A: Pain that has lasted for more that around six months is referred to as chronic pain. When pain continues for a long period of time, after the original cause of the pain (in your case, the damage caused by the car accident) would be expected to have healed, it is regarded as chronic pain. Medicine is moving in the direction of regarding chronic pain as a disease in its own right, although many doctors do not have a high awareness of chronic pain, its causes and treatments. It is great that your GP has referred you to a pain specialist as treating chronic pain can require a high level of expertise. While the causes are poorly understood, it is becoming clearer that chronic pain and depression are closely linked, and treatments for these two conditions can frequently overlap. While Cymbalta (which contains a drug called duloxetine) was originally developed as an anti-depressant, it has become clear that it can also be an effective treatment for chronic pain, even where depression is not a serious issue. Other drugs that can be used to treat chronic pain include some anti-epileptics, and other drugs commonly used for psychiatric problems such as lithium. Non-drug therapy is also beneficial in the treatment of chronic pain and treatments may include physiotherapy, a type of psychotherapy called cognitive behavioural therapy, mindfulness meditation, hypnosis and lifestyle changes which may be part of a complete occupational therapy regime.

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 eoin@mccabespharmacy.com 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 sky over Dublin with Conor Farrell, Astronomy Ireland

What causes the Northern Lights? A few weeks ago you may have noticed a lot emit light, which is what we see as northern of talk in the news about the northern lights lights. Different gases (like oxygen and nitroappearing over Ireland. However, you didn’t gen in the air) give rise to different colours. miss much: I checked to see if they could be The northern lights are usually spotted spotted and unfortunately Dublin was covfrom countries in the Arctic Circle, but someered by clouds! That said, our friends in the times a particularly strong display can push northern counties got a bit luckier and manthe auroral oval down further south where aged to see a very strong display of the we can see it from Ireland. During the last northern lights, also known as the aurora solar maximum about 10 or 11 years ago I borealis. managed to see the northern lights faintly We’ve been experiencing more northern from Dublin, so make sure to keep watching lights than usual lately as the Sun has just the skies over the next couple of months! passed its peak in solar activity. This cycle You can get your equipment to scan the lasts 11 years, and when it’s at its maximum, Dublin sky at nightskyoptics.com the Sun experiences more magnetic fluctuations on its surface. These fluctuations cause sunspots, and are also the starting point for solar flares and coronal mass ejections (CMEs). When a CME fires out from the Sun towards Earth, its own magnetic field can sometimes connect with Earth’s, in a manner that makes material from the CME flow down towards our planet’s poles. The charged particles from the CME hit the gas in the air, making them energised. When those atoms lose the energy again, they n Northern Lights as seen from the Space Shuttle (credit: NASA).

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The Informer

Garden Growing With Gerry Norton Gardeners' favourite season

Some suggestions for work to be done over the next few weeks:

• Keep on top of weeds with small but regular digging • Start getting your veg plot ready but don’t overdo the digging as your back may give in after a (more than likely) sedentary winter • Short amounts of regular tilling and digging is best • Prune bush and shrub roses • Lift and divide overgrown perennials • Bare patches on lawns can be reseeded now • Early potatoes that have been chitted can be put into the ground now • If clipping hedges, be very careful as birds are building their nests • Start feeding fish if you have a pond

Spring is without doubt my favourite time of the year and I think most gardeners and growers would agree. There is a great sense of relief bearing in mind that we have just been through the wettest winter since records began, over one hundred and fifty years ago. Add to that equation the near hurricane force winds which I hated more than the rain. Both factors caused massive destruction throughout the country. Burst into life

Finally, our gardens have burst into life with all kinds of familiar plants emerging to gladden the heart and in only a few weeks we can expect longer evenings as summer time clocks will go forward and millions of us will engage in the twice yearly ritual of manipulating time. My own small spring garden looks wonderful now with Hellebores, Dwarf Narcissus, Cyclamen, Daffodils etc, all in abundance and with other delights

Each tree is a work of art and are all the carefully nurtured work of Andrew J. Murray, of Lusk, North County Dublin. The exhibition runs until the 22nd of April. Mow carefully

n A trip to the Botanic Gardens is extra special at this time of year

to follow such as Lily of the Valley and Giant Snowdrops. Visiting the 'Bots'

Regular readers will know that I often enjoy a ramble in one of the capital’s jewels, The National Botanic Gardens in Glasnevin, which is always marvellous and inspiring, particularly at this time of the year, and it is free. The ‘Bots’ is bursting with new life and as you walk through it you can see the wonderful work of the staff, teachers and stu-

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dents. If the ‘Bots’ is too far away for you to get to, could I suggest a short walk to your local park as we Dubliners are very fortunate to have beautiful parks in all areas of the city. Amazing exhibition

While on the subject of the ‘Bots’, there is currently an amazing exhibition of Bonsai in the new green house by the car park. Inside you will see dozens of the most stunning bonsai you will ever witness.

As spring gets underway the first thing most gardeners think about is mowing the lawn. I’m surprised by the growth during this awful winter but I guess this is because we had no snow or serious frost. Don’t over-do the first cut. Always set the blades to their highest point and it is also no harm to leave some of the cut grass as mulch. Most readers that grow their veg etc from seed will already have chosen their edibles for this year and will be propagating and planting out in a few weeks. Don’t worry if you haven’t been able to start from seed as the garden centres will soon have the usual small, established plants ready to go into your hopefully well prepared veg plot.

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 livinglandescapes@eircom.net. 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

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The Informer

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Porcelain man 10

Where did you grow up? I grew up in the countryside on the Essex/Suffolk border. There was a lot of running, jumping and climbing trees going on! My parents still live there so it’s nice to go back as much as I can.

When did you first get into music? I grew up making a lot of noise singing! My Mum always said I was very in tune. I started singing properly around the age of six in school plays. I started playing guitar when I was 9 or 10 and found myself in various bands during my secondary school days. Music has always been a huge part of my life. You were in two bands before the X-Factor, do you prefer being a solo singer or being part of a band? I love the control I retain being a solo artist, but there is nothing better than thrashing it out with a band. It’s great when I get to go on tour because you get to share the buzz on stage with friends behind me. Was entering the X-Factor a last chance attempt at making it big or was it something you would have always been up for doing? To be honest I didn’t put myself up for it, it just

The Informer

Matt Cardle Interview with Rachel Murray

happened. A friend sent a video of me singing to the online audition without me knowing and I got a call asking me to audition in front of the Judges. I wouldn’t change what happened for the world. Singing to an audience of 19.1 million for the final, on stage with Rihanna, was incredible and a memory I shall never forget. What is the biggest thing you’ve taken from winning the X-Factor? I guess an even bigger drive to chase down my dreams. You have to believe anything is possible. Do you keep in touch with anyone from your time on the X-Factor? Yes. I made lots of friends on the show. Some were contestants and others work behind-the-scenes in the industry. I still keep in touch with lots of them. Dannii Minogue has always been a complete rock.

Both during the show as my mentor and years later as a friend. We’ve stayed in touch and she has always been at the end of a phone or email during the ups and down of it all.

Guitar or singing? I can’t really choose. Do I have to? If forced I’d have to choose singing, but they both go hand in hand for me.

You helped Kian Egan pick his team for The Voice, who do you think are the stand-out contestants? It was such an honour to help out Kian, he is a great guy. All the people he has picked are great and have amazing potential. Jay Boland has an amazing voice and Laura O’Connor has real star potential if she can beat the nerves.

Who are you listening to now? I love love love love love London Grammar. I can’t stop listening to their album. I have a real soft spot for Hannah. Not only is she one of the most incredible vocalists but she is also absolutely gorgeous

The X-Factor or The Voice? Both shows are incredible and the most amazing launch pad for anyone young or old who is looking for their big break in music. You have played lots of festivals which has been your highlight? I absolutely loved playing the Isle Of Wight Festival last year because I was on the same bill as Pearl Jam, Tom Petty, Starsailor and Melanie C, to name a few. It was a real pinch-my-skin moment. I’m looking forward to playing some more great festivals this summer and including some songs from the Porcelain album.

Who are your musical inspirations? The King Of Pop – Michael Jackson is my ultimate inspiration. I has great fun the other day listening to accapella vocal out-takes from his Dangerous album. I also love Eddie Vedder and Peter Gabriel. When you’re not touring or writing music, what are you up to? We are all guilty of not spending enough time with family and friends so this year I’ve been making a huge effort to spend more time with loved ones. I’m feeling so fit and healthy which has left me feeling more sporty. I’m really looking forward to some snowboarding trips later this year with a group of mates, that will be fun. I also bought my first apartment last year, so that’s keeping me busy with renovations and making it feel like home. You are playing Dublin’s Academy April 2nd, what do you like to do when you come to Dublin? I used to drink Guinness but I haven’t touched a drop of alcohol since just after Christmas so that won’t be possible on this trip. I loved watching all the beautiful women, so I guess that will need to take up all my spare time on visits to Ireland in the near future. Yes, I’m still single! After the tour what’s next? I’m working on a few projects at the moment which are all very exciting, but I can’t talk about them just yet. I’m already writing and recording new material however going on tour is a huge pressure but also one of the most rewarding parts of my job. I’m putting in lots of hours to make this the best show possible for everyone and it’ll be great to perform tracks from my latest album (Porcelain) for the first time. Once the rehearsals are over I can really focus on the second part of this year. There could be some trips to the US coming up as I hear Loving You, the duet I did with Melanie C, is receiving a great reaction there. It’s a huge country but I’d love to give things a go over there. Will you be playing any Irish festivals over the summer? I’d love to. I always look forward to stepping on Irish soil. It’s feeing a little like a second home these days. Watch this space! See Matt Cardle live on ‘The Porcelain Tour’ at Belfast Mandela Hall on April 1st and Dublin the Academy on April 2nd. mattcardlemusic.com/live to book tickets. Matt’s album ‘Porcelain’ featuring the hit singles Loving You (with Melanie C), when you were my girl and new single hit My Heart (released March 31st) - is out now!


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12

The Informer

Game Reaction with Denis Murphy

South Park: The Stick of Truth is a surprisingly fresh, varied and not to mention absolutely hilarious gaming experience. Be warned though, despite its cute visuals it, much like the TV show, is for adults. Game Reaction: 10/10

The LEGO Movie Videogame Developer: TT Games | Platform: Multiple

South Park: The Stick of Truth Developer: Obsidian Entertainment Platform: Xbox 360, PS3, PC3 There have been plenty of games based upon the TV series South Park, and while most have been absolutely awful, South Park: The Stick of Truth tries to stay true to the series while also delivering a great RPG experience. You start The Stick of Truth by creating your very own South Park character, and are eventually thrown into the iconic town in Colorado. From here you're free to explore the town, talk to its many foul mouthed inhabitants and pick up loot. The game looks and feels exactly like an episode of the series, but make no mistake- South Park: The Stick of Truth plays like a classic RPG complete with quests, turn based battles and a very, very detailed upgrade system. Out now for the Xbox 360, PS3 and PC,

The game focuses on Emmett, a guy who lives the boring and mundane life of a simple Lego construction worker. That is until Wildstyle comes into his life, a girl who believes that Emmett is a Master Builder. Now, with a Lego tyrant planning to glue all Legos together, Emmett must join up with the other Master Builders in a bid to stop him. The story is pretty basic but fun, and ultimately makes for a great set up for a game through its many action set pieces. The formula largely remains the same in The Lego Movie Videogame. Throughout the course of the game the player controls various characters, starting with Emmett himself. Through levels the player needs to solve various puzzles to advance further. These puzzles generally call for Emmett to build, break or fix something. The Lego Movie Videogame is a game for all ages. Kids will love it, parents playing with their kids will share in a wonderful experience together and gamers playing it by themselves will have a lot of fun with it.

Graham Connor's Movie Advice The Dallas Buyers Club HHHHH Directed by Jean Marc Vallee. Starring Matthew McConaughey, Jared Leto and Jennifer Garner. In 1986 Ron Woodruff is told that he is HIV Positive and has 30 days to live. Encountering a lack of HIV knowledge among his doctors, Woodruff takes his medication into his own hands and begins to treat himself. This is a true story. It is not a melodrama; it is not a blatant puller of heartstrings either. It is a very honest film, McConaughey portraying Woodruff as he was, a drug addicted womaniser. Ordinarily he isn’t a character you can easily like but you certainly do feel sorry for him and that is the true testament of McConaughey as you grow to like him because you understand him. But this isn’t just about McConaughey, he is surrounded by equally talented actors, chief amongst them is Jared Leto, a man who returned from a six year acting hiatus to play a HIV Positive transgender street hustler. He has garnered a lot of awards talk from this role and it is all warranted. The film does lose its way a little towards the end as it confuses what is important; the politics of the story or the human element but it is a small quibble. Dallas Buyers Club deservers to be seen, it is a well-told story that is genuinely affecting. Advice: Must see

Robocop HHHHH Directed by Jose Padulha. Starring Joel Kinnaman, Michael Keaton and Abbie Cornish It is 2028 and Det. Alex Murphy is mortally wounded in the line of duty. Waking up, he is informed that he has become Robocop, a fusion of man and machine. The original Robocop was an ultra violent sci-fi film. This remake attempts to be just that, just without the violence. Surprisingly that doesn’t mean it’s a bad film, it certainly is action-packed but it’s nowhere near as violent as it’s 1987 predecessor. It also attempts to satirise modern society, the power of social media, fear in the home and the struggle between man and machine. One main problem is that Kinnaman’s Robocop isn’t a patch on Peter Weller’s original, he hasn’t got the physical presence but then again, this Robocop is a much trimmer creation and looks like a black coloured ipod. But Kinnaman is a great Robocop, he offers a lot more humanity than Weller could as this version of Robocop knows exactly from the start what has become of him. The cast in this film is universally excellent, Keaton and Samuel L. Jackson expecially. Abbie Cornish adds a lot of depth to the family side of Det. Murphy/Robocop, she illustrates the conflict between man and machine. If I am honest I believe that this is a film that did not need to be made. At the same time I found if quite enjoyable, there are several nods to it’s 1987 predecessor. If you have never seen the original then you’ll probably love it. Advice: May be better on DVD

Game Reaction: 6/10

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14

Dublin Advice

T An Introduction to Shamanic Healing Th The Informer

To talk of shamanic healing can only be done from the heart. It is a subject as small and strong, powerful and intuitive, as our own hearts. The people who come to me for shamanic healing are people who may have ignored their hearts’ needs, or had to ignore them, and years later, are feeling the consequences. This could be in sadness, depression, feelings of loss or ill health. It could be in the inability to find direction or satisfaction or to move forward in their lives, possibly unable to create relationships or have the babies they desperately desire. Origins of Shamanic Healing

by Shamanic practitioner Constance Harris

Shamanic healing is probably as old as how long human beings have been on the planet. Every culture had its own version of it. The shamans I learnt from, the Q’ero, are the last direct descendants of the Inca in Peru, although it is believed their tribe originated from the O'er Apache Snake Clan in Central America. To avoid the Spanish conquistadores’ massacres, the Q’ero retreated high up into the Andes Mountains where the altitude was too much for the marauding Spaniards. There they remained untouched and unspoilt for 500 years until anthropologists ‘found’ them. In fact, the Q’ero’s own prophecies held they were to share their knowledge with the people of the West in the interest of saving Mother Earth. But that is another story. Alberto Villoldo, author of several books including “Shaman, Healer, Sage”, was one such anthropologist. He founded a school of shamanism, The Four Winds Society, and it was with him my training

began. Q’ero healers – shamans - believe that we, everything on the planet, are all spirits, alive and interconnected. We are children of Great Spirit, brother and sister to each other. They believe that at all ill health and suffering comes from the severing of our relationship with the Mother Earth, usually. They talk of plant, animal and mountain spirits when they talk of healing. They sometimes talk of family spirits ‘passed over’, or toxicity from our society - be it incidental such as stress, or intentional such as drink and drug abuse. They call on spirits – mountains, water, animal, plant, Grandmother Moon, Father Sun, Mother Earth – to assist their brother or sister to shed that which ails them. How Healing Happens

Shamanic healers work at a person’s soul level. They believe and operate in a non-ordinary reality. It

is not necessary for the person seeking assistance to believe. It is a very beautiful healing to experience; deep while being peaceful. The important thing is that the healer does believe and that the person seeking assistance desires something to change. I have had atheists and skeptics, as well as Christians, Muslims and Jews, come to me who found they enjoyed the rich language of metaphor in the healing, as well as the results. It is non-religious healing so there is no conflict of beliefs. Some people like to hear the story of the ‘journey’ I go on for them. Others don’t. If people don’t want to know, they don’t have to. The healing happens. Still, after ten years of practice, what I love about shamanic healing is not just the beauty of the experience and the sometimes extraordinary results that sessions can bring about, but also the reciprocal nature of the healing. Often the theme of what a person brings to be dealt with is shared in some part by the healer; it may be a theme of their past, their present, or their future. When the person sheds some of the toxicity of what has ailed them, they lighten not just their load, but my load and that of the collective planet. Constance Harris, Appletree Health and Wellness, 126 Ranelagh, Dublin 6. Tel: 087-252-4701 Web: www.constanceharris.com. www.appletreehealthandwellness.com, five minutes walk from the Luas Green Line Ranelagh stop.

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Animal Tracks with Gillian Bird, DSPCA

The greatest thing to happen for Irish animals in 103 years! The DSPCA is thrilled with the passing of the Animal Health & Welfare Bill into law. The legislation will replace the outdated Protection of Animals Act 1911. The new animal welfare legislation will improve the rights of animals, will make animal owners more accountable, will increase the powers of seizure of animals in neglected situations, allow for prevention of cruelty in numerous situations and increase the penalties for convictions particularly with the appointment of the DSPCA among the officers authorised by the Minister and by local authorities. The introduction of this modern Animal Welfare legislation will reduce the unnecessary suffering on animals as authorities now have the backing of appropriate legislation. This is particularly important with regard to trafficking of animals which remains a significant issue in Ireland. In those cases, where trafficking is suspected, we will now be able to trace the source of those engaged in this cruel trade and prosecutions will be possible. On an average day the DSPCA receives

over 400 calls to its emergency and cruelty line which is up by 150 a day in 2013. So far this year the DSPCA has seen an increase in the numbers of calls it receives each day with calls concerning animal cruelty increasing by 60%. Established in 1840 to prevent cruelty to animals, the DSPCA is Ireland's largest and longest established animal welfare organisation. Its primary role is the prevention of cruelty and neglect through the provision of homing, rescue and care services for injured and sick animals. The DSPCA is a leading advocate for animal welfare and works closely with the Gardai and the Fire Rescue services.

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Lucid Dream I am running through a field, the warmth of sun on my skin and the light touch of a whispering breeze. I revel in the supple movement of my limbs, jumping this way and that, deftly avoiding protruding clumps of rushes and weeds. I’m immersed in the sights and sounds of a sunny summer’s day. My mood is one of carefree joy, the freedom of a child at play. Leaping from foothold to foothold I notice something rather strange. In mid-leap I seem to hang in the air for a little longer than seems normal. It is as if gravity has somehow slowed down, relaxing its normal iron grip just a little. At first this seems a mere curiosity but soon I am consciously willing myself to stay airborne for as long as possible increasing the distance travelled in each jump. To my delight it seems that I can control this effect and soon I am jumping fifteen or twenty feet with ease. My descents are slow and serene and on landing I take off effortlessly in another gigantic bound.

It then strikes me that this has happened before and that in fact I no longer need to jump from place to place as I can, by an effort of will, stay airborne indefinitely. Soon I’m no longer leaping from foothold to foothold – I am actually flying! It is not like the flight of Superman, more like the gentle glide of a hang-glider pilot or a parachutist coming in to land. The wind buffets me gently but mostly I can travel in any direction that I want. It is an exhilarating experience. I am now gliding along a hundred feet in the air and my speed is increasing. The fields are a rolling carpet far below. Trees and hedges whizz by. I feel a thrilling sense of power, exploring my extraordinary new abilities. After some time I look up ahead and see a sudden end to the green vista, I am approaching a cliff-edge. I descend for a closer look and see the fields fall away in a sheer drop down to the sea. I see boulders casually tossed like pillows far below. At the base of the cliff the sea tumbles and roils, hurling itself against the rocks. My flight takes me past the edge to open sea. Waves, like grey wrinkles, march in stately progression below me.

Now my mood begins to change, I feel uneasy, the beginnings of fear. What if I should fall? How is it that I am not falling? But, as fear threatens to overwhelm me and drag me down into the icy depths, I have a sudden and astonishing revelation - this is not real! I am dreaming, now aware that this is a dream but yet the dream continues, a lucid dream. From having had lucid dreams on rare occasions before, I know that soon I shall wake up. I’m fascinated by the fact that everything I am experiencing, all the sights, sounds, the feeling of wind against my skin, are all in some way an invention of my own mind. It is like a vast virtual reality simulation of which I myself am the author. How realistic it all seems! I look around me and try to compare this self-created illusion with the real world. It seems almost as complex, almost as real though I know that it isn’t. But now I am becoming aware that my body is lying on a soft surface, not gliding through the air. I know that the spell is breaking, my adventure almost at an end. I wake to a feeling of disappointment, once more bound by pitiless, unrelenting gravity.

Graham Connor's Movie Advice The Grand Budapest Hotel HHHHH

Directed by Wes Anderson. Starring Ralph Fiennes, Adrien Brody, Saoirse Ronan and Bill Murray. An author recalls a visit to the titular hotel when it was once one of the greatest hotels in Europe and discovers how it changed hands through the years. If you have seen Non-Stop and loved it, chances are that you are going to hate this film. Did you like The Life Aquatic, Rushmore or Moonrise Kingdom? Because this, Wes Anderson’s latest is the best of the bunch. It’s an absolutely bonkers film, one that straddles the fine line between genius and nonsense very carefully. Fiennes has never been as enjoyable in a film before, he really buys into the farcical tone of the film and he’s a true revelation. It has all the Anderson flourishes, the long slow tracking shots, the uber deadpan wit, the intertitles and, of course, Bill Murray. Admittedly the plot is wafer thin but this film is all about looks and it looks amazing. The set design is eclectic, as are the hairstyles and costumes and colours. It’s just bonkers but brilliantly so, full of excellent performances, a film that will make you laugh out loud two days after you’ve seen it. It’s pure brilliant and one of the best looking and most inventive films I have seen in years.

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Non-Stop HHHHH Directed by Jaume Collet-serra. Starring Liam Neeson, Julianne Moore and Linus Roache Bill Marks is a troubled US Air Marshall. On a transatlantic flight an unseen terrorist demands $150 million dollars otherwise 1 passenger will die every 20 minutes, the problem being that Marks is the number one suspect. If, when watching this film, you feel like it’s all a little familiar it’s probably because Jaume Collet-serra, the same man who directed Unknown, another of Liam Neeson’s surprisingly successful action flicks, directs nonStop. And Neeson’s character is just an unhinged version of Bryan Mills, his character from the Taken series of films. Yawn? Surprisingly not. Now, Non-Stop is not at the Hitchcock level of ingenuity but it is quite clever in places, keeping the tension building nicely for the most part. The film does take a nosedive in the last third, which is a shame, and undoes a lot of both Neeson and Colletserra’s good work. Neeson is rock solid, the gravitas that he lends the role really is the saving of this film; no one else could have played Bill Marks. Julianne Moore is a little wasted to be honest but she does her best to add a bit of depth to her character. If you liked Unknown and Taken then don’t even think about it, just go buy a ticket and see this movie. You’ll love it. It’s an enjoyable but ultimately forgettable film. Advice: May be better on DVD

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18

The Informer

Say hello to your slimmer and healthier figure

All

A Place

The design Victorian resi in 1860 by Skipton Mul particular clie number of progress it to years to co dwelling. It house which h an extremel structure of appearance. The first re were Richard wife. Richar wife by thre buried at St. N As soon a wealthy wine export merc dence in 188 with his exten tions. Traces (E.B.) are to posts of the i case in the Gortmore. Other addi tions which w ing the reside ed billiard a The idea of in


19

The Informer

All about Dublin 1

A Place in the City The design for this elaborate Victorian residence was drawn up in 1860 by the architect John Skipton Mulvaney. It was for a particular client and because of the number of projects he had in progress it took the architect ten years to complete this ornate dwelling. It included a tower house which has been described as an extremely well-built stone structure of authentic medieval appearance. The first residents at Gortmore were Richard Atkinson and his wife. Richard predeceased his wife by three years and he was buried at St. Nahi's graveyard. As soon as Edward Burke, a wealthy wine and foreign spirit export merchant, took up residence in 1884, he spared no time with his extensive plans for alterations. Traces of Burke’s initials (E.B.) are to be seen on the newel posts of the impressive oak staircase in the stately interior of Gortmore. Other additions and modifications which were introduced during the residency of Burke included billiard and smoking rooms. The idea of introducing the garden

Gortmore, Dundrum

into the house was a feature of the 19th century, and this was carried out by Burke in the form of the erection of an impressive domed conservatory. Burke’s residence was followed by John Gardiner Nutting, a relative and chairman of the Burke business. Other occupants included such family names as Macready, Sir Joseph Redmond, Hegarty, Dudgeon and LeFroy. Gortmore, with its fifty acres of land was finally sold for £12,000 by Mr. B. St George LeFroy to the

Qrder of Carmelites in March 1944. The name was soon altered from Gortmore to Gort Muire. Its initial function was as a Novitiate, later as a House of Studies in the early 1960s and more recently as a Conference Centre. An extract from 'Dundrum, Stillorgan and Rathfarnham Gateway to the Mountains", with paintings by Olivia Hayes and text by Christopher Ryan. It is published by Cottage Publications and is priced around €22.

Edited by Zoz

Lesser Known Dubliners William George Nicholas Manley You are not really conquered until the British decide you don't own the land anymore! It's a simplification .. but it was one of the main cause of the Maori War (1845-72). In general it was a hit and run, guerilla war, with few set piece battles and a gradual attrition of the Maori. One of the few outright defeats suffered by the British occurred on April 29, 1864, when troops besieged a Maori hill (Gate Pā) which had been fortified with ramps, palisades, trenches and deep anti-artillery bunkers. With around 1,700 troops attacking an estimated 200-250 lightly-armed Maori warriors the outcome was never in doubt... After a bombardment lasting eight hours, during which an estimated 30 tonnes of shot and shell, troops fought a five minute battle before reporting that the hill was captured and quiet. And then, as further troops advanced from the rear of the hill, heavy fighting broke out again. Such was the confusion that to this day no-one is quite sure what happened - did British troops mistake each other and open fire, or had the Maori force remained largely hidden, waiting for a chance to strike? Thirty-one of the British force died, including 10 officers, while 80 were wounded. Maori losses were not recorded but were lower. During the confusion of battle, as officers fell, a Dublin doctor, assistant-surgeon William Manley,

32, earned the Victoria Cross, the highest British military award. His citation read, in part: "Having volunteered to accompany the storming party into the Pah, he attended on that Officer when he was carried away, mortally wounded, and then volunteered to return, in order to see if he could find any more wounded. It is stated that he was one of the last Officers to leave the Pah." It was reported in the Daily Mail of 24 January 2006, that Manley was awarded the German Iron Cross for tending the wounded during the FrancoPrussian War of 1870-71 - becoming the only recipient of both the VC and the Iron Cross. He also earned himself 18 medals, including the most prestigious medals of France and Afghanistan. In 1878-79 he was in Afghanistan during the Second Anglo-Afghan War, and in 1882 he was in Egypt during the AngloEgyptian War. He was present at the Battle of Tel el-Kebir (the soccer club TEK in Deansgrange is named after it). He turned down the offer of a knighthood from Queen Victoria on the grounds that he couldn't afford the lifestyle. Manley eventually achieved the rank of surgeon general and retired from the army in 1884 with a distinguished service pension. He died on 16 November 1901 in Cheltenham.

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The Informer

20

All about Dublin 2

Edited by Zoz

Making History

The early days of Stephen's Green

The history of Stephen's Green goes back to the time of the Crusaders, who, it was said, brought the disease of leprosy from the East. On the site of the Green a lazar (leper) hospital and church were erected, and placed under the care of monks. In the Reformation days hospital, church, and monks were swept away, and the Green remained a public common, the haunt of wild birds, especially snipe, which were attracted by the marshy nature of the land. In 1766 the historian Harris wrote that snipe-shooting was a constant practice in Stephen's Green, although at this time on three sides of the Green stood fine houses occupied by the nobility. Better advantage than feeding snipe

In 1663 the burgesses of the City began to awake to the fact that such a large area as 60 acres might be turned to better advantage than feeding snipe. The Green was therefore parcelled out in lots, and seven years later the further step was taken of enclosing a portion by a thick hedge, outside which ran a deep ditch. Inside the hedge a wide walk was made between two rows of lime trees. Later on a high wall was added. By 1775 it had become a fashionable promenade, especially on Sundays after church, one of the celebrated beauties of Dublin in 1767, Dolly Monroe, was so besieged by admirers that her only chance of getting fresh air was to make the round of Stephen's Green at 6 o'clock am.

This feature was researched with the help of n Photo of a protest against evictions in York Street, Dublin, in 1964. The image is one of more than 1,300 taken by Elinor Wiltshire between 1951 and 1971. A full article with more photos can be fun on the National Library of Ireland website (http://tinyurl.com/o2rdxwq).

The best cuts of beef for casseroling are rib and shoulder. You can make the casserole and par boil the potatoes in advance, then assemble and reheat when you are ready to eat it. Serves 6.

Ingredients ➽ 750g rib steak, well trimmed & cut into cubes ➽ 2 onions, finely chopped ➽ 1 tablesp. soft dark brown sugar ➽ 200mls stout ➽ Sprigs of thyme ➽ 1 tablesp. good quality wholegrain mustard ➽ A little salt and freshly ground black pepper ➽ 50g mature cheddar cheese, finely grated

➽ 2 tablesp. olive oil ➽ 2 cloves garlic, chopped ➽ 1 tablesp plain flour ➽ 300mls water ➽ 1 tablesp. red wine vinegar ➽ Pinch of ground cloves ➽ 850g large potatoes, peeled

Cooking time: 2 Hours Method: Set oven to Gas Mark 3, 160°C (325°F). Heat a tablespoon oil in a frying pan. Then brown the beef, a few pieces at a time. Remove the meat as it brown to an ovenproof casserole dish. Heat the rest of the oil in the pan then add the onions. Cook for a couple of minutes to soften then add in the garlic. Cook for another minute, be careful not to let the garlic burn. Then stir in the sugar and flour. Add in the stout and water or stock, stirring all the time. Then add a few sprigs of thyme, the red wine vinegar, mustard, ground cloves, a little salt and lots of black pepper. Bring to the boil then pour the sauce over the meat in the casserole dish. Cover with a lid or tin foil and cook in the oven for 1½ hours or until the meat is tender. Meanwhile cook the potatoes in a saucepan of boiling water for 8-10 minutes. Drain well. Slice the potatoes into 1cm rounds and overlap them on top of the beef in the casserole dish. Season with salt and pepper then sprinkle over the cheese. Increase the oven temperature to Gas Mark 6, 200°C (400° F). Place the casserole dish back in the oven and continue to cook until the potatoes are golden and cooked through – approximately 15 minutes. Serve with a selection of root vegetable which have been tossed in a little olive oil and seasoning and roasted along with the casserole for the last 30 minutes. Serving Suggestions: Roasted root vegetables. Nutritional Content: Protein: 36g; Carbohydrates: 36g; Fat: 31g; Iron: 3.3mg; Energy: 576kcal

The Monthly Morsel

Beef Casserole with Sliced Potato Topping

Recipes from


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Do you have social anxiety? Social anxiety is the fear of social situations and the interaction with other people that can automatically bring on feelings of selfconsciousness, judgment, evaluation, and inferiority. Social anxiety is the fear and anxiety of being judged and evaluated negatively by other people, leading to feelings of inadequacy, inferiority, embarrassment, humiliation, and depression. If a person usually becomes anxious in social situations, but seems better when they are alone, then "social anxiety" may be the problem. Specific and Generalized Social Anxieties A specific social anxiety would be the fear of speaking in front of groups (only), whereas people with generalized social anxiety are anxious, nervous, and uncomfortable in almost all social situations. It is much more common for people with social anxiety to have a generalized type of this disorder. When anticipatory anxiety, worry, indecision, depression, embarrassment, feelings of inferiority, and self-blame are involved across most life situations, a generalized form of social anxiety is at work. Symptoms of Social Anxiety Disorder People with social anxiety disorder usually experience significant emotional distress in the following situations: • Being introduced to other people • Being teased or criticized • Being the centre of attention • Being watched while doing

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