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Rathfarnham Informer 15,000 copies delivered monthly

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

Rathfarnham • Nutgrove • Churchtown • Ballyboden • knocklyon • Edmonstown

Ballyroan Library returns in spring

We're working 9 to 5...

Yer man from the 'Telly'

Building handed over to South Dublin Libraries in early November

The re-development of Ballyroan Library will see a new state-of-the-art facility opening in February 2013 to cater for the growing population in South Dublin. Construction workers handed the By Anne Sharkey building over to South Dublin Libraries in early November to begin the task of fitting it out with access, language classes, different shelving, furniture, book stock and newspaper titles available to read computer infrastructure. and a space for research. The Local Councillor, John Lahart library will form an incredible part welcomed the the latest develop- in the community. The new library ments at Ballyroan. “The physical will also be carbon neutral.” work has been completed and all The re-opening of Ballyroan that is left now is to stock up the library. There will then be a 'soft' opening in March and the library will then be officially opened to the public in June.” With 100,000 users each year, the library will cater for a range of activities. “The new facility is not just library. It is also a media centre. The range of activities is end- n Inside the new building. From less. There will be free internet Box Architecture.

library will necessitate the closing of the Hub at the Pastoral Centre in Rathfarnham on November 2nd, as staff will be working in the new library building to ensure that it opens on time in 2013. Whitechurch Library will continue to offer its extended opening hours while this refit is underway. Items reserved at Ballyroan Library will automatically be forwarded to Whitechurch Library for collection from 5th November, 2012. The population of South Dublin is now 265,174 persons. The 2011 Census shows that South Dublin now has 21% of the population of the greater Dublin region and a recent mapping of library membership indicates that people from the counties surrounding South Dublin who study and work in our County are significant users of the Council library services.

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Bernard O'Shea Interview Win 2 Tickets to the Opening Night of 9 TO 5 - The Musical Dolly Parton's 9 TO 5 is heading for Dublin at the Bord Gais Energy Theatre in January and you can be there on the opening night of this fabulous production.

See page 2

Cut Tobacco Duty

Forest Eireann - Page 2

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The Informer

The Drift Comment Box

By John Mallon, Forest Eireann

Cut tobacco duty

Dublin by Numbers

1,720 This is the number of teenagers who gave birth in Ireland in 2011. The good news here is that the rate of teenagers giving birth has been falling. In 2001 the number was 3,087.


The reasons for this fall are varied but greater use of contraception is a big factor. Research shows that teenagers who received sex education were 1.5 times more likely to use contraceptives.

The winners of the tickets for the American Idiot competition Steve Brennan, Leopardstown. Robert McWilliams, Malahide.

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The story of our low Corporate Tax rate and how it came about is odd to say the least. It was one single individual who suggested the rate should be lowered, not increased, in order to bring in more revenue. This counter intuitive proposal was met with hostility from the Department of Finance at the time but it was eventually done anyway, and the rest, as they say, is history. Today, all of the big names in the I.T. industry and many of the biggest Pharmaceutical Industries also have their European Headquarters in Ireland because of the bold move to lower taxation rather than increase it. The truth for these companies is that they would have simply set up elsewhere had our tax rate remained so high relative to other countries, and Ireland would have lost out on much needed revenue. Today, the average price of twenty cigarettes in Ireland is the highest in the EU and there are calls from the usual quarters to increase it even more. Unfortunately, smokers have a choice, in fact two choices. They can legally purchase their tobacco from any of the other EU countries and save significantly that way. Or, they can buy the smuggled variety almost anywhere in this country for even less again. And before the moral majority point the finger of blame, many good citizens avail of laundered diesel whenever they can find it or purchase pharmaceutical products abroad because the prices are so artificially high here. On the issue of smoking prevalence, in 2005, the Office of Tobacco Control announced that the rate had fallen to 23.5% but last year, the Eurobarometer report put smoking prevalence at 31%. In the six years that tobacco prices were raised, the numbers smoking also increased. This would suggest that high prices do not fulfill their stated function. Forest Eireann believe that the counter-intuitive move to lower taxation on tobacco products, would actually increase revenue to the State, at a time when it is most needed. While benefitting from huge savings by buying smuggled products, there is a distasteful angle for the smoker in so doing and the uneasy feeling that the proceeds of the sale may go to criminality. It is well known also, that the dealers in smuggled tobacco products will think nothing of selling to children also. A move to lower taxation on legally purchased tobacco products will hurt nobody except the criminals, whose sole motivation is the profits to be made from our artificially high pricing.

opening night 9 TO 5: THE MUSICAL is coming to the Bord Gáis Energy Theatre, Dublin in January 2013. 9 TO 5: THE MUSICAL is written by Patricia Resnick, with music and lyrics by Dolly Parton. This a hilarious new musical comedy, based on the hit movie and centres on three office workers who turn the tables on their sexist, egotistical, lying, hypocritical bigot of a boss To win two pairs of tickets to the Opening Night of the show on Monday 21st January 2012 answer the following question: Who wrote the music for 9 TO 5: THE MUSICAL? Answers by e-mail only to Please include your contact number Closing date for entries 10th January 2013.

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Green Scene

The Informer

By Kathy Marsh, Sonairte

Informer Eco Christmas 2012

Christmas wrapped up!

The power of Christmas

So it’s that time of year again. All of us have a little less in our pockets than we did last year or the year before, but that need not stop us enjoying Christmas with our friends and relations, giving gifts and sharing in the traditional joy of the season. But like it or not we’ve had to cut our budgets, whether it is less to spend on Christmas dinner or less to spend the children’s toys. So let’s have fun saving money and let’s keep it green.

You didn’t throw away last year’s wrapping paper did you? You did? Oh dear. Well you’ve got two options (besides buying new of course). For small objects you can use pretty pages from magazines, or you can use brown paper and decorate with motifs cut from those magazines or junk mail. This year tie your parcels carefully with string or pretty ribbon so that the wrappings are easy to recycle next year. It is also easy to make pretty and unusual gift bags with those same pages – there are lots of patterns on line.

If you buy presents with batteries, buy rechargeable batteries and a charger – and make sure they are charged up for Christmas morning. And toys that aren’t being played with can be cleaned, tidied, and given to a local charity, or indeed to a friend’s children. The same goes for that toiletry set someone gave you that isn’t what you would actually use. If you are buying cosmetics and perfumes make sure they made from sustainable ingredients without animal cruelty. Maybe you can sit down as a family and decide you will only give each other token gifts and instead you will give an animal to a needy family -

Christmas card ideas I’ll start with Christmas cards. How much do you usually spend on them? How many trees get cut down to provide them? How much diesel gets burned delivering them? I’ve got two suggestions here. One is for those who live close to you or who you see regularly, and the other for those who live far away. For those nearby just make your own and hand deliver them – turn the children loose with card and paintbrushes or markers, glue and glitter. Sit down and help them – you’ll all have a great time and the cards will be original. For those who live further away it’s time to go virtual and this is where you really save a lot of money. You can design and send your own e-cards – there are lots of sites to tell you how – but to really make a difference go to one of the charity e-card sites such as that of the Society of St Vincent de Paul ( And don’t throw away cards after Christmas – you can use them to make next year’s cards, gift tags, Christmas decorations and gift boxes. There are a host of suggestions for these and for home made gifts using recycled materials for both children and adults to make at www.

Prezzies, prezzies... When it comes to presents I’m not suggesting that you deprive the children of toys – but I am suggesting you think hard about how long they are going to play with them. One young lady of my acquaintance says she 'depises' most tv and movie themed toys once she’s had them for a week – so don’t give them to her in the first place. Buy something that will grow with the child – every youngster needs more construction equipment – and then help them learn to expand its possibilities. Give them the gift of the great outdoors – buy them binoculars and birdbooks and then go out with them to look at birds. Or buy a bike for every member of the family – buy second hand if you can’t afford new – and get out together. You’ll be so warm when you get home, especially if you are wrapped up in that new Christmas sweater, that you’ll be able to turn down the thermostat a couple of degrees – 18C is fine. There are great outdoor gifts from IPCC ( nature-shop) and BirdWatch Ireland ( In fact if you join the latter you can have fun taking part in their annual garden bird survey.

Surviving the festive feast When it comes to celebrating Christmas perhaps it would be a good idea to think about the weight we all put on, only to go on a diet on New Years Day. It is possible (hard I know, but possible) to plan Christmas so you don’t need to go on that diet. Think about all the lovely locally grown seasonal foods there are – expand the fresh vegetable part of the dinner and cut back on the meat and potatoes – and you won’t have as much room for pudding and cake. I’m not saying don’t eat the fattening foods – just try to eat more fresh food so you won’t have as much room for the fattening ones and think about portion sizes to avoid waste – I’m horrified every year by friends who tell me they got tired of leftover turkey and threw the rest out for the birds, or dumped it in the bin. If that is what happens in your house buy a smaller bird, or if you don’t like dark meat just buy the breast. In our house December 27th is when I turn leftovers into ready meals that can go into the freezer to come out in January. It only takes a few minutes and I’m so glad of them later. I freeze them in takeaway containers.

And if you don’t like rich fruit cake don’t buy it – if you want a pretty Christmas cake base it on a type of cake you do like – it won’t keep as long so make a smaller one, or make two and store the second in the freezer. The same goes for Christmas pudding – only get one that is the right size for the number of people who will eat it and if people don’t like it make a fruity dessert. Keep what you offer your guests light – you don’t try to stuff them like the turkey the rest of the year, why do you do it at Christmas? Include good long walks in you holiday schedule to work all the food off.

Looking like Christmas And how about decorations. This year it has been good to see that all the shops have LED Christmas lights – that should cut down considerably on national electricity usage. Door wreaths and garlands are easy to make too. Willow twists easily into a frame and ivy will wrap around to make the base. Then you just need to tuck sprigs of other greenery and holly into it. Likewise long strands of ivy will loop gracefully all over the house and you can twine the LED lights into it. At the end of the season rescue the lights and compost the rest. These make great gifts too and the kids will enjoy helping you make them. We buy a new Christmas tree every four or five years – the potted kind. OK, it is pretty small the first year but each year we move it up a pot size until it gets too heavy to carry and we have to plant it out in the garden (you may need a friend with a big garden for that bit – but remember you can give them the tree as a Christmas present).

and lights out. Finally, don’t forget to turn off the Christmas lights when you go to bed at night – Santa will have no problem finding your chimney in the dark.


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Angler's Angles with Keith McDonnell

Ireland’s wild salmon under threat In Ireland we are extremely lucky to have populations of Wild Atlantic salmon in our river systems. This majestic fish annually migrates from Ireland all the way to its feeding grounds off the coast of Greenland and then miraculously finds its way back to the very stream where it was born in order to reproduce. It is one of the great migrations on Earth. The Irish salmon is also one of the greatest game angling species. Salmon anglers are among the most passionate about this fish and have gone to great lengths to conserve and protect it. The Atlantic Salmon is under serious threat and in recent years stocks have become critically low to the extent that many rivers in Ireland have been closed to angling. Anglers also fought hard to limit the amount of commercial netting for this species in our coastal waters. Now, one of the greatest threats to the species is the ever increasing salmon farming Industry. One might think that farmed salmon would take the pressure off the wild salmon but unfortunately the opposite is true. Many of the wild salmon returning to our rivers to spawn are being infested with concentrations of sea lice emanating from the salmon farms dotted n Visiting American Angler around our coast. Ireland’s Fisheries Zenas Huchison delighted Department ‘Inland with his first Wild Irish Salmon Fisheries Ireland’ took

part in a recent international study and it concluded that 39% of deaths among wild salmon are attributable to sea lice in areas where salmon farming takes place. Our current Government have recently decided to expand the salmon farming industry in Ireland. One of the first additions will be a ‘Mega’ salmon farm in Galway Bay. This farm will produce 300 times more farmed salmon than we currently produce in the entire country. Bord Iascaigh Mhara are leading this project and have carried out an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) on the location of this farm but according to Inland Fisheries Ireland (the state body in charge of protecting our valuable natural resources) this EIS has failed to address the potential impact on wild Atlantic salmon populations. It has been scientifically proven commercial salmon farms decimate wild salmon and cause serious pollution to the environment. Apart from the potential decimation of our salmon stocks, our tourism industry is likely to suffer job losses when visiting anglers stop coming here. It has been said that a visiting angler spends an average of e300 euros in Ireland in order to catch one wild Salmon. We have a world class sport fishery here in Ireland and I believe our environment is one of our greatest assets. However it is fragile and could very easily be destroyed in pursuit of a quick buck. Keith McDonnell is a fly fishing guide and instructor and big trout nut based in Dublin.

The Informer

The sky over Dublin with Conor Farrell, Astronomy Ireland

Once upon a time in Bethlehem

A long time ago, astronomy and astrology may have been interpreted as the Star of were interlinked with each other, with reli- Bethlehem. In 5BC, Chinese astronomers docgious clerics often studying the movements umented a new star that was visible for sevof stars and planets to link astronomy into enty days. This is consistent with a nova or prophecies and so forth. One such link supernova (massive stellar explosions). Comets between the two is the Star of Bethlehem, can often look like 'arrows' pointing in a cerwhich led the Three Wise Men to the birth- tain direction, possibly leading the Three place of Christ. Wise Men to Bethlehem. However, comets So what was the Star of Bethlehem? One were considered bad omens, even though school of thought suggests that it was a con- Halley's Comet was visible in 12BC. junction of Jupiter and Saturn (where they The Moon and Jupiter are in conjunction were both placed very close together in the on November 28th and will look spectacular, sky) occurring in the constellation Pisces. but the best view will be on Christmas Day, Jupiter symbolised a king, Saturn was the star when the Moon and Jupiter will for their of the Jewish people, and Pisces symbolised the end of an age and the beginning of a own 'Christmas Star' in the night sky! Clear skies and Happy Christmas! new one. Indeed, in the year 7BC this conjunction took several times – something that occurs every 800 years. In this case, the two planets and Pisces were visible in the east just before sunrise, and before they were made invisible again by daylight. It has been suggested, as a result, that Jesus was born in November, 7BC. Of course, there were other events around that time that n Adapted from Stellarium (


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The Informer

Garden Growing With Gerry Norton A year of amazing growth and poor yeild As we enter the final month of the year and our gardens start to settle down for the winter, it’s always worthwhile to have a good think about what worked in the last year and what didn’t. The past year was a very challenging one for all gardeners with amazing growth due to an abundance of rain combined with warmth yet very poor yield due to a serious lack of sun. The tomatoes, for example, were a total disaster as were strawberries and other soft fruits. However, as we are not in control of whatever the weather throws at us we will probably make the same mistakes next year. I’m sure I’ll try the same varieties of tomatoes and fruits next year and hope the sun does us a few favours. Last chance

December is your last chance to settle your garden down for winter as very little will be done in January and February of

remember that by doing this you get free plants for next year. Germinating your own seeds is easy and a cheap way to get new plants for the new season. Most seeds can be germinated on a sunny inside window sill or by using a heated propagator which are widely available at a reasonable cost. If you have a pond make sure to disconnect the pump as it may be damaged if we have serious frosts.

2013. It’s very important to keep removing leaves from your lawn and tidy up overgrown shrubs and bushes. Having done this pruning and tidying up you will need to dispose of the green waste. New Mulch

Which brings me nicely to mention a fairly new green waste company located in Coolock Industrial Estate, Dublin 17 called ‘Mulch’. They set out to replace the St. Anne’s Park garden waste depot that closed in 2007. Since Mulch opened about two years ago they have gained an excellent reputation with domestic as well as commercial customers. Mulch also sells a variety of soil improvers, peat free compost, kiln dried firewood and bark. This new exciting company also operate a loyalty card discount scheme at their indoor drive through facility which is a first in Dublin. In addition the kind guys at Mulch, John, Aengus

Have a good one

n Germinating your own seeds is easy - a cheap way to get new plants and Joe offer their customers a really good cup of coffee free of charge. Cut down dead growth

Apart from the usual end of year tidy up of leaves and shrubs, etc, it's also important to continue to cut down dead growth on herbaceous perennials and continue



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to tidy up borders. There will be little or no growth of weeds during the winter months so the more you tidy now the better your garden will look in a few months time. December is also your last chance to gather seeds from this years spent perennials. Always

Finally as the year is about to leave us, I would like to thank you for reading my monthly Informer gardening articles and many thanks to readers who have contacted me during 2012 for advice or to offer invaluable suggestions to other readers. I wish all Informer readers a very happy and peaceful Christmas and a prosperous and green 2013.

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 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:

The Informer


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The Informer

Yer man from the 'Telly' The Informer Interview Funny man, Bernard O’Shea is all set to bring Vicar Street to life this Christmas as he takes to the stage on Friday 7th December 2012. When he is not making us laugh on the Republic of Telly, the Laois man takes to the live stage to show his unique humour, guaranteed to make you laugh out loud. Bernard chats to Kevin O’Brien about his life as a comedian and the upcoming Vicar Street gig.

Where did you grow up? Durrow in Co Laois. Married, children? Married no Kids yet Fondest childhood memory, good or bad, what was it? Myself and my sister hiding in the boot of the car when my mother was driving up to Dublin. She found us in Naas and went ballistic.

doing a college gig and the audience had little to no English it was going horribly wrong. I said "thank god no one knows me" and this voice from the back of the room went "I went to school with your mother". Do you enjoy TV work or gigging most? When I'm doing Telly I love doing live stand-up and when I'm just doing stand-up I wish I was doing telly.

What made you want to become a comedian? A friend of mine ran a comedy competition in college and I was the only one who entered. I won a support slot at a bigger gig and it went from there.

How do you rate Irish humour to that of other countries? It's very story driven and not as harsh maybe as English humour but it’s very similar to most of the English speaking world.

Do you remember your first gig, were you nervous? It was in college in front if all my class mates and I was very nervous.

Has the recession had an effect on you personally? Yeah, I lost a radio job. It's harder to get work same - as everybody else really.

You have performed all around the world, what is your most memorable gig? Kavanaghs in Portlaoise. One night my mam walked in while she waiting outside for me (I was on crutches at the time) and said "I've been waiting outside for ages... Is this what you do?

Do you care how critics judge you? No matter what a critic says I'm always harder on myself than anybody. You have to remember as well, nobody but the people involved reads the reviews. The public (your audience) don't read them or don't care.

What’s the best heckle someone has thrown at you and what was your response? Again mother related. I was in Bruges years ago

What’s the funniest thing to have ever happened to you? I have a terrible sense of direction. Once in

Germany I got on the wrong train and ended up in France. When I woke I just presumed I was in Germany (Cologne) for a few hours until I couldn't find the pub I was playing music in and realised I was in Strasbourg. I went around trying to talk German to French people for hours - they hated me. Do you watch what you eat or can you simply eat and not pack on the pounds? I've lost four stone this year by basically exercising. I track all my calories on the iPhone but I eat like a horse. I have to learn how to chew. I normally gobble stuff down then feel really guilty so I go for a walk or swim. If you were to appear in a Hollywood blockbuster, what type of character would you like to play and who would you like to co-star with? I would love to play a leading man alongside Angelina Jolie where we try and set up and car parts garage on the long mile road. Who would be your own favourite comedian or all time and why? Jason Byrne. Is an epic incredible stand-up. You are playing Vicar Street this December , how does this show differ to anything you have done before? It's more expansive. When you have an Edinburgh

show it's less Irish driven or on TV it's such tight writing. In Vicar Street on the 7th it's an hour of stand-up that has been developed over the last two years and it’s by far the most personal stuff I've ever written. OK, finally, you are about to enter the jungle in 'I’m A Celebrity, Get Me Out Of Here', Name six people you would like to go into the jungle. But here's the snag. Two of them have to be Irish politicians, two singer/musicians and two other comedians. Tell us why for each? Richard Dunne (he could stop anything), Rachel Allen (to make the dinner), The Green Party (because I think they know about Jungles), Lady Ga Ga (for shelter), Jamie Cullen (to see him carry a piano around a rain forest). And, I suppose, Dermot and Jen. What does the coming year hold for Bernard O’Shea? Hopefully, 365 days, a decent summer and eh... Global Domination. Bernard plays Vicar Street on Friday the 7th December and tickets are on sale NOW priced €23 (including booking fee) from He is definitely worth the look as he’s not your typical, predicable comedian.

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Animal Tracks with Fionnuala Rogers, DSPCA

Adopt Don’t Buy this Christmas The DSPCA are urging the public to “Adopt Don’t Buy” a pet this Christmas as part of a campaign to prevent trafficking and to provide a second chance to many of the pets in its rescue centre. Christmas sees thousands of pets given as presents, many of which are bought online from unscrupulous breeders. The DSPCA is asking people to give pets in rescue centres such as the DSPCA a second chance by adopting as gifts rather than purchasing. Many of the pets bought come from sources who have no respect for the animals or their welfare. Unfortunately many people buy pets on line, in good faith, not realising that in the many of cases these animals are being bred to order in appalling and stressful conditions. We are asking the public to consider adoption as a way of giving a healthy pet a second chance. The pets at our rescue centre have had the full care of the DSPCA including vet checks and vaccinations. Furthermore, we can advise families on breeds and pets that best suit their family home life. The DSPCA dealt with 3319 cases of reported animal cruelty and took in over 4400 animals. We hear upsetting stories reported to us in the DSPCA every week and the public can help in many ways. If you can’t adopt an animal then consider fostering an animal short term. If you can’t

foster, volunteer, if you can’t volunteer donate and if you can’t donate educate to end animal cruelty. Get the Santa Experience The DSPCA is also running the Santa Experience again at its centre in Rathfarnham. Children and their families can visit Santa, surrounded by animals, in the picturesque setting of the Dublin Mountains. A visit to Santa at the DSPCA will create a cherished new memory for families while supporting a good cause that children will love. We sell out every year so be sure to book your place early! There are no queues and every child is guaranteed a present from Santa. Space is limited and you must book in advance. To visit Santa at the DSPCA book online at


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Arts Angle

The Informer

With LA Speedwing

A Christmas treat at the RHA It is always nice to come back to a place you enjoy. Spacious, luminous and quiet, the Royal Hibernian Academy can offer a place of heaven right in the centre of our busy capital while offering a wide variety of exhibiting works. For this month and next, they have succeeded again in providing both. Between Eithne Jordan’s exhibiting work, John Beattie’s beautifully crafted HD film projection, Michael Warren’s chairs and Sean Keating’s oils, watercolours and mixed media paintings art lovers will feel like going for a treat right until before Christmas. Eithne Jordan is one of the most respected painters of her generation and this series follows her interrogation of the urban of European cities

and specifically in Dublin. Sean Keating’s exhibition shows his artistic approach towards structural engineering while working at Ardnacrusha and at Poulaphouca; The exhibition features work from the ESB collection and is sponsored by the company. John’s Beattie films explore the relationship between traditional academic ideas of the artist and their practice and contemporary approaches to art making. Michael Warren worked on a series of eight chairs in an attempt to refine their horizontal supports to greater accentuate and mimic the architecture of Renaissance compositions All four exhibitions represent the essence of Irish contemporary art in its many forms and diversity. These artists have developed platforms which represent the breadth and quality of Irish art over the last two centuries. And if these exhibitions fail in providing a sense of depth to the Irish art, I’m sure RHA is hoping to provide pride in showing how art has been and will keep on being a part of Ireland to its citizens.

Where: 15 Ely Place, Dublin 2. When: Until the 21th December. Opening Times: 11am – 5pm- Except Wednesday – Saturday until 7pm. Sunday 2 – 5pm Women’s fiction and children’s stories available for 99 cents on Smashwords from this author.

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

Winter Sun Breaks at Sunset Beach Club LOCATED on the sea front in Benalmadena, Costa del Sol, Sunset Beach Club is the perfect setting for a relaxing winter sun break. This fabulous resort is just a short 20 minute drive from Malaga airport and combines the convenience of apartment accommodation with all the facilities and services of a 4 star hotel. This FBD owned hotel is open all year round, and is as popular for great value Winter breaks as it is for family holidays in the Summer. Their friendly animation team also provides daily organised activities in the Winter, including cooking lessons, exercise classes, petanca, darts, bingo and much more. The promenade in front of the hotel is ideal for a stroll by the sea, or you can just lie by the pool and soak up the winter sun with a good book! If you’re feeling a little more adventurous, the hotel’s leisure desk can help you to book car hire and excursions which will allow you to discover and explore the beautiful towns and cities which this part of Spain is famous for. Some of the most popular day trips

include a cultural tour of Malaga with its Picasso Museum, historical buildings, churches and monuments; a trip to the world famous Alhambra Palace in Granada and a day in the Andalucian capital city, Seville. After a busy day of sightseeing it’s time to relax. The Panorama Bar on the 6th floor of the hotel commands spectacular views over the Mediterranean and has a popular evening Happy Hour. Dinner is served every evening in the Oasis Restaurant; with an extensive a la carte menu and live music entertainment it’s the perfect place to wind down and taste some delicious Mediterranean cuisine. Prices start at just €29 per person per night (based on 2 people sharing) for an exterior apartment with full buffet breakfast included. For more information, please visit or call +34 952 579400.

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New Champions in 2012 Following the frenzy of the inter county championships the focus over the last few months has been on the club championships. In Dublin we have new champions in senior football, hurling and ladies football with only Ballyboden St.Endas in camogie, who won their third consecutive title, retaining their crown. The senior men’s football championship provided an excellent Dublin final with Ballymun Kickhams winning their first title since 1985 with a one point victory over Kilmacud Crokes. In a cracking game Ballymun played some of the best football seen at club level in the first half with Kilmacud Crokes coming back in the second period to reduce the deficit to just one single point at the end. Ballymun Kickhams have also been the form team in the league all year and after a few days celebrations they knuckled down to the serious preparations for their Leinster club campaign under the guidance of former Dublin great Paul Curran. Again they proved what a good side they are by dismissing Mullingar Shamrocks on a score line of 2-13 to 0-7. Can they win Leinster? Well let’s hope so. Kimacud Crokes had been on course for a Dublin senior double after their hurlers won their first title since 1985 with victory over Cuala in an all Southside final. Goals were the difference here with Barry O’Rourke and Ryan O’Dwyer hitting the net in a 2-10 to 0-9 victory. Unfortunately for Crokes, their journey in Leinster was thwarted by Wexford champions Oulartthe-Ballagh who defeated them by one point in Parnell Park. Like Ballymun Kichams in football and Kilmacud Crokes in hurling the ladies

footballers of Foxrock Cabinteely became the new kids on the block in their senior championship. Drawn in the group stages with the reigning champions Na Fianna and the Queen’s of ladies football Ballyboden St Endas, the young Foxrock Cabinteely girls' displays brought a freshness to the championships. Coming through the group at the expense of Ballyboden, they went on to defeat Na Fianna in the Dublin final by three points 0-12 to 0-9. Driven by Dublin star Sinead McGoldrick, who won a TG4 Ladies football All-Star, they went on to contest the Leinster club final but lost out to Wexford champions Shelmalier on a score line of 0-10 to 3-2. In camogie Ballyboden St. Endas were the only senior champions to retain their crown. In fact, they went one better by winning their third consecutive title by beating St. Vincents. Another great achievement for the Firhouse Road team. Unfortunately their Leinster campaign was halted by Oulart the Ballagh. Special mention to the Cuala Intermediate footballers on their promotion to the senior ranks after their third consecutive attempt to win the Intermediate final. What made their win special was the fact that many of the players were on the senior hurling team beaten in the Dublin final a week before. The inter county scene may be more glamorous to the watching public but the club scene is the heart of the GAA. We have had many great club games in all codes in recent months and the more support they get the better all round. So as the New Year approaches put this resolution on your to do list for 2013.

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It's not everyday that you arrive at a farm decorated with thousands of twinkling lights, meet Santa & his deer Dancer & Prancer or see a crib with a live cow & donkey, except of course when you visit Ireland’s Lapland at Glendeer Pet Farm. Glendeer Farm, which is just outside Athlone off the M6 (Tuam/Monksland Exit 13, follow Drum signs) has all facilities undercover. There are Christmas themed cabins with scenes like ‘ The Night Before Christmas’, an animated snow scene, Santa’s Workshop & a real ‘Winter Wonderland’ where the kids can run around as the snowflakes fall down around them. A variety of animals await your arrival also, including our cheeky monkeys George & Gina. Ireland’s Lapland has something for everyone, young & old alike. The children get their little bag of food to feed the animals as they make their way over to see Santa, have a chat with him & receive a gift, & adults can treat themselves to fresh coffee/cappucino & homemade snacks in the warm surroundings of the cosy coffee shop. There is plenty to entertain the kids with the new INDOOR Skywalk play area with lots of slides & bridges so Glendeer is perfect even on those wet or snowy days, just remember to wrap up warm! Don’t forget to bring along a camera so you can take plenty of memorable pictures of your lapland experi-

ence. This year Santa arrives by sleigh on Sat 1st Dec at 5pm & will be at the farm every evening until the 23rd Dec. Special rates for groups of 20 & over, catered for by appointment during the day. Admission: Adults € 8, Children € 16 (includes visit to Santa & gift) Opening times for Ireland’s Lapland : Mon to Fri 4pm – 7pm, Sat & Sun 3pm – 7pm There is no need to pre-book tickets, they can be purchased on arrival. It is a queuing sytem for Santa, but it moves quite quickly & children can feed the animals while they wait. No one will be turned away! For more info. or directions on Ireland’s Lapland @ Glendeer Farm, Curryroe, Drum, Athlone visit or contact us on 090 6437147.



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The Informer

eauty Notes

with Kathleen Rowley

I know it’s early but.... While wandering around A-Wear in the vain hope of finding the perfect top that would make me look both slimmer and taller my ears were assaulted by an unusual sound, WHAM’s ‘Last Christmas’. Yes it is only mid-November but looks like the season of good-will is upon us whether we like it or not! If you want to avoid the last minute stress of Christmas Eve panic shopping and oompa loompa tan then start now. L’Occitane is a fantastic spot for present ideas and they have two new gorgeous additions, Magical Leaves and Marvellous Flowers. Marvellous Flowers is a personal favourite as it boasts a delicate rose fragrance accompanied by a burst of red berries. The body cream in this range would also be great for

Graham Connor's Movie Advice Skyfall HHHHH Directed by Sam Mendes. Starring Daniel Craig, Javier Bardem and Judi Dench James Bond, nearly killed in the line of duty, comes to M’s rescue, charged with recovering a list of active undercover agents she has lost. Soon Bond finds himself facing his greatest opponent in a battle to save MI6. Daniel Craig as Bond suffered serious ‘second album syndrome’ with Quantum of Solace. He needed Skyfall to be more than a return to form, he needed it to be magnificent. Thank God Sam Mendes had the same idea - Skyfall is a fabulous film, certainly one of the greatest Bonds ever made. Craig makes Bond human, giving him hopes and fears. Gone is the suave Bond; Craig brings the rock hard Bond that Fleming wrote and it is brilliant to see. Javier Bardem is a wonderfully manic villain, the villain that Bond films have been crying out for – dark, malevolent and insane. Judi Dench is given something to do with M in this film and the dynamic between her and Bond is beautifully played out. Skyfall is not just a fabulous Bond film, but a great action thriller in it’s own right and deserves to be seen. Advice: Not to be missed!

Argo HHHHH Directed by Ben Affleck. Starring Ben Affleck, Bryan Cranston and Tate Donovan. It is 1979 and six Americans have been caught up in the Iranian hostage crisis. CIA tasks ‘extraction specialist’ Tony Mendes with rescuing these six people anyway he can. It should be noted now that Argo is a true story – what happens in this film actually happened to actual people, the plan that Mendes devised was real. That then makes this film all the more unbelievable, yes unbelievable, as how he goes about it is just amazing. Enough about the plot though, the less said the better. Like The Town, for me Argo is one of the best films of the year and another fabulous directorial effort from Ben Affleck. Like The Town, Affleck has surrounded himself by the right actors, not big name stars. Cranston is brilliant as a CIA chief who has to fight for Mendez’s mission and Tate Donovan is warmly welcomed back to the big screen. One of the major successes of Argo is how real it feels, how Affleck has captured the tone of the 1970’s perfectly, from the music of the era right down to how films were shot in the 1970’s. Argo proves that there is life in American filmmaking, a testament that films from Hollywood can be made without the use of mega money. Advice: See ASAP.

17 post-tan moisturising as it light and non-greasy. In terms of fake tan/ Christmas party preparation the Almond Shower Scrub is enriched with almond oil and crushed shells and will gently cleanse and exfoliate your skin without being too harsh. Green Angel’s product range continues to offer up high quality creams, lotions and scrubs at excellent prices. This Christmas they have a beautiful skincare set for €39, it comprises of the Seaweed Night Cream which contains six essential oils and the Seaweed and Collagen Face Cream. The Face Cream really boosts the complexion and is great as a face mask before a night out. No Christmas party dress would be complete without a bit of fake tan. St.Tropez remains the leader in all things tan related and they have a number of gift sets on offer. Runway Radiance (€37.99) includes the selftan lotion along with tan optimiser products to ensure a long lasting colour. Red Carpet Ready (€49.99) includes the self-tan mousse which provides a deeper colour along with optimiser and body polish.

The Little Black Dress Treatment Perfectly times for the arrival of the festive season! Rathgar Laser & Beauty have introduced the ‘Little Black Dress Treatment’ using the sumptuous ‘Aromatherapy Associates’ products. This treatment has been designed to leave partygoers with smooth glowing skin before they head out for the night!

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The Informer

Dublin Advice

Age-ing or Sage-ing?

seeks to recruit a

By Maeve Halpin, Registered Counselling Psychologist

Getting older positively

In our youth-orientated culture, disempowering attitudes towards ageing are pervasive. Getting older is associated with slowing down, becoming unattractive, isolated, lonely and ill, and with losing our engagement in and enjoyment of life. These negative associations are reinforced by the endless marketing of “anti-ageing” products, diets and medical procedures that promise to stave off the seemingly inevitable decline into marginalisation, depression and loss. Such stereotypes of ageing are outdated, inaccurate and do not reflect the reality of life for the vast majority of older people. Not only do we have control over many aspects of ageing, but there are numerous positive dimensions to ageing that get lost in the barrage of negativity.


Social Worker

internet and mobile phones breaks down isolation and empowers older people to develop new skills and interests. By keeping a positive attitude and seeing ageing as an opportunity to exercise a new-found freedom, we can ensure that our options and possibilities expand rather than shrink as we age.

The ideal candidate will be a professionally qualified social worker with experience in intercountry adoption, and with language capability in Vietnamese, Chinese and/or Spanish.

© Maeve Halpin Nov 2012, Registered Counselling Psychologist, Appletree Health and Wellness, No. 126, Ranelagh, Dublin 6. Tel: 087-2877837 •

Contact for more information

Well-being in older age.

Far from being depressed, the over-55's report the highest level of life satisfaction of all age groups. A number of factors contribute to this enhanced level of well-being. Relieved of the pressures and responsibilities of childrearing, older people often enjoy better relationships with their adult children, and can gain great satisfaction from their relationships with their grandchildren. They are less constricted by the roles that they had to fulfill in their earlier years, whether at home, socially or in the workplace, and become more “their own person”. Ageing brings a depth of wisdom, insight and understanding that can only come through life experience. People tend to become more compassionate and less judgemental of both themselves and others as they age, realising that making mistakes is an inevitable, and indeed essential, part of life. Getting older can bring greater confidence and release people from concerns about what other people think, allowing them more personal freedom. They worry less, partly due to having fewer responsibilities, but also through discovering that allowing things to unfold without interference often leads to the best results. They stress less about small things, and are able to see a bigger picture.

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Demographic factors

Populations are ageing and the birth rate continues to decrease. For the first time in history, married couples have more living parents than children. Sociologists refer to this as the “demographic time bomb”, asserting that a country top-heavy with older people will create a “social burden” for the shrinking younger population to carry. In reality, only a tiny percentage of older people require expensive, longterm care. The vast majority of seniors are healthy, active and productive members of society. Far from being receivers of social care, they are net providers, through the help they give to their families, their local communities and through volunteering and other civic activities. They offer a growing market for providers of adult education, sporting and cultural activities, and are free to contribute their time and experience to political, spiritual and charitable causes. An older population will engage in less crime and create greater social capital, i.e. more interconnectness through informal networks which provide the “social glue” that keeps communities together. Staying healthy as we age

The “baby boomer” generation will be the healthiest, wealthiest and most active group to ever enter the “third age”, as life post-retirement is now called. Advances in medical science, as well as increased awareness about the importance of diet, exercise and other lifestyle factors, means that physical health and ability does not have to decline significantly as we age. Keeping mentally and physically active, not smoking, drinking in moderation, exercising regularly and eating fresh, unprocessed food have all been shown to have measurable effects in maintaining cognitive abilities and physical health. Access to information and communication through the




Flowerhill win best decor award

Flowerhill Furniture showcased their Amberwood range at the recent Ideal Homes Exhibition in the RDS, coming away the the award for “Best Décor” for their stand Introduced in 2012 The Amberwood range of handpainted kitchen and dining room furniture has gone from strength to strength , with orders coming in from all, over Ireland. This award winning furniture includes dressers, cabinets, bookcases, showcases and dining sets in a wide variety of environmentally friendly colours and finishes. Furthermore, all pieces can be made to measure with nationwide delivery available. Amberwood, produced in regular, distressed or an antique finish, is handpainted in a one-colour or two-colour finish, with up to 30 shades to choose from. To complement this beautifully crafted furniture, designed with a little more than a nod to nostalgia, Flowerhill Furniture stocks a popular range of vintageinspired kitchen and homeware accessories. These country-style products, functional but beautiful, have character and are readily adoptive to most home styles. The range is unique to Flowerhill Furniture, where its rustic look, combined with a fresh and stylish approach to today’s customer demands, can be readily appreciated. The knowledgeable and experienced staff are ideally equipped to afford the best possible service and advice to quality-seeking shoppers.

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Wanted Motorcycles


Turn your unused motorcycles into cash!!

Anything from 1 year old to 100 years. Clear out those unused motorcycles from your shed ,՘˜iÀÃÊ>˜`ʘœ˜ÊÀ՘˜iÀÃÊUʘÞÊVœ˜`ˆÌˆœ˜ÊVœ˜Ãˆ`iÀi`

Phone 01 2830195 or 087-2331559





All Types of Window and Door Locks

Upgrade your locks today!!

Call Brian: 086-6014188 • 01-8601546 D15 Locksmiths, 2nd Floor, Unit 12, St Brigids Shopping Centre, Main Street Blanchardstown, Dublin 15. (opposite Ryan's Garage)

Bespoke Jewellry


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Adamas Jewellery

Professional Floor Restoration Services

    

Wood Floor Sanding & Refinishing Stone Floor Restoration Tile Floor Restoration Vinyl Floor Strip, Seal & Polish Fast Drying Carpet Cleaning

For all your specialist floor care needs just call….

Ollie on 086 824 7814 or 1890 252 383 (Office)

We Buy Old Gold, Silver & Diamonds PH: 01 4627422 St Dominic's Shopping Centre, St Dominic's Road, Tallaght

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The Informer

Rathfarnham In Brief... Straighten yourself up! Following ‘Straighten Up Ireland’ week this month, the Chiropractic Association of Ireland (CAI) will continue to visit schools stressing the importance of looking after posture and overall well-being. Now in its fourth year, ‘Straighten up Ireland’ was first started to raise awareness of spinal health among adults and children. The CAI has developed a series of simple everyday exercises, which will act to improve posture, stabilise core muscle groups, enhance health and prevent spinal disability. Free spine and nerve system checks are available at the Life and Balance Centre in Rathfarnham between now and Christmas. For more information visit or or call 01 2079881. RNLI fundraiser seeks to rein in participants The third Dublin RNLI Reindeer Run will take place at Marlay Park in Rathfarnham on Sunday, December 2nd. All abilities and ages are catered for with participants choosing from a 5km or 10km walk, run or a shorter Santa Saunter. To get into the Christmas spirit all participants will be given a pair of novelty antlers to wear and an RNLI Reindeer Run t-shirt. ‘Rookie’ the Reindeer Run mascot will also be on hand throughout the day to join in the fun. The closing date is November 30. The cost is €9 for the Santa Saunter, €20 for the 5km and €22 for 10km. Entrants for the Dublin Reindeer Runs are asked to register online at reindeer. Events at Ballyroan Community Centre • Every Monday; Whist 2pm – 4.30pm. Contact the centre on 01 4958576. • Breakfast Club run by Chestnut Montessori 8am – 9am. Laura 087 1380332. • Irish Grinds Leaving Cert(H) 5.30pm – 6.30. Irish Grinds Leaving Cert(O) 6.30pm – 7.30pm. Irish Grinds Junior Cert(H) 7.30pm – 8.30pm. Contact Helen on 086 1529723. • Thump – Boxing without the Fight 9.30am –

with Anne Sharkey 10.15am. Contact Grainne 087 3892750. • Every Tuesday; Unislim 9.30am – 10.30am. Contact the centre on 01 4958576. • Probus Mens Group 11am – 12pm. • Playball(2years) 12.30pm – 1.05pm. Playball(3years) 1.05pm – 1.35pm. Contact Michael on 087 7819229. • Extend Chairobics 10.30am – 11.30am. Call Andrew on 087 6500815. • Spanish Lessons(5-7years) 3pm – 4pm. Spanish(812years) 4pm – 5pm. Contact Anne on 01 4939543. • Ladies Tummies and Thighs toning 9.30am – 10.30am. Jean 087 6130714. • Rathfarnham Radio Club 7.30pm – 9.30pm. Contact Tom on 087 6125302. • Pilates 7.15pm – 8pm. Contact Grainne on 087 3892750. • Every Wednesday; Walkers Group 1pm – 2pm. Contact Centre for more. • Personal Care Course 2.30pm – 3.30pm.Contact Irene on 087 0682040. • Maths grinds Junior Cert(H) 6.30pm – 7.30pm. Maths grinds Leaving Cert(Ord) 7.30pm – 8.30pm. Call Eddie on 085 1546579. • Irish dancing 4.30pm – 5.30pm. Contact Kevin on 087 9690622. • Caring for Carers(HSE Group) first Wednesday of every month 5.30pm – 7.30pm. Contact Pauline on 01 8794054. • Karate Beginners class 6.30pm – 7.30pm. Karate Red-Purple Belt 7.30pm – 8.30pm. Karate Brown and Black belt class 8.30pm – 9.30pm. Call Brendan on 086 0887210. • Every Thursday; Computer class 12 – 2pm. Contact Aine on 087 6732219. • Musical instrument lessons 12pm – 8pm. Contact Sean on 087 2563549. • Marian Bridge Club 7pm – 10.30pm. Contact the centre on 01 4958576. • Kids sewing class 3.15 – 4.15. Contact Elaine 085 1198713. • Every Friday; Ballyroan Mens Shed 10.30am – 12.30am. Contact the centre. • Friday Club – community Active Age Group 10.30am – 1pm. • Breakfast club 8-9am. Contact Laura 087 1380332.

Rathfarnham Informer Nov 2012  
Rathfarnham Informer Nov 2012