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SandyfordInformer July 2011 • Unit 38, Northwood Court, Santry, Dublin 9 • Tel: 01 813 8786 • Email: • Web:

Sandyford • Leopardstown • Stillorgan • Stepaside • Foxrock

Bailey takes over the role of cathaoirleach Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council has elected Fine Gael Councillor John Bailey to the office of An Cathaoirleach, with Labour Councillor Jane Dillon Byrne elected to the office of Leas Cathaoirleach. The newly elected Cathaoirleach has several key issues that he wish- By Graham Connors es to address during his tenure, the main aim being the regeneration of commercial rate in the 2012 Budget. “This will not be an easy Dun Laoghaire. “I am very conscious of the dif- task,” he stated, “but I believe it is ficulties being faced by the busi- a worthy objective that can be realness sector across the county and ised by working together with especially by small businesses as a Council management and will consequence of the severe decline directly benefit all businesses in the county and help sustain employin the economy," he said. "I am very anxious to promote ment.” the regeneration of Dun Laoghaire Bloomsday celebrations town in order to ensure that the Councillor Bailey wasted no town recovers lost ground and realtime in praising the huge efforts ises its enormous potential. I am convinced that this can be best made by the traders and business achieved by reinventing the Dun people of Dun Laoghaire, Laoghaire town brand based on the Sandycove and Glasthule in putting exciting work of the BRAND together a programme of entertainproject, building on the many posi- ment and events for the Bloomsday tive initiatives already underway.” celebrations which were held in Another task that Councillor June. Speaking about the event, Bailey has set for himself is to significantly reduce the Council’s Councillor Bailey said that it was

Is Fracking a Dirty Word?

Green Scene - Page 4

“a great day for the town of Dun Laoghaire to see local business interests coming together in such a positive and dynamic way”. Councillor Bailey believed his hopes to see a revitalised Dun Laoghaire were showing their first buds as the success of the Bloomsday celebrations bore witness to “the spirit of co-operation and a determination to move forward that had made the difference.” People came out in their hundreds with Don McManus, Chair of the Dun Laoghaire Business Association echoing the beliefs of Councillor Bailey, claiming that the day had been an “unqualified success, with people giving generously of both their time and their energy”. He added that for 2012 it was hoped to extend the celebrations over a whole weekend and that planning was already underway to put an exciting programme in place.

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Grease is the word! Hollywood Motivator!

Derek O'Neill Interview

Win tickets to see grease at the grand canal theatre

Page 12

Grease is the word in Dublin! Irish singing sensation Mary Byrne will make her stage debut to guest star as ‘Teen Angel’ in the smash hit musical. The X Factor star will join the cast of Grease, this summer’s hottest ticket, for the show’s limited 3 week season at the Grand Canal Theatre Dublin from 9- 27 Augus. See Page 23

Metro North Can pay! Opinion Page 3

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The Informer

The Drift

Q The month in Quotes The News of the World is in the business of holding others to account. But it failed when it came to itself. James Murdoch delivering the verdict on the doomed News of the World. It is my baby and if I want to bring it out to play again I will J K Rowling on whether the Harry Potter magic is over Every person who made those phone calls, I'm paying for those phone calls now. I'm the only person in Ireland paying for other people's phone bills. The whole use of phones in the Houses of the Oireachtas should be looked into and should be checked. Michael Healy Rea makes the right call The reason I didn’t run was not because I didn’t think I’d get the nomination. I was quite confident of that. The reason I didn’t run was because I didn’t think I would win it. Niall O'Dowd drops out of the presidential race Only for it I would be imprisoned in a hospital room through no fault of my own. Now I am free. Patricia Ingle (22) who is paralysed and brain-damaged, who claimed she contracted a rare brain disease from parrots was awarded damages of more than €7.5m. Mr. Strauss-Kahn will not be pleading guilty to anything William W. Taylor III, lawyer for Dominique Strauss-Kahn, foresees a trial Ireland is not Greece. Ireland is not Portugal. Finance Minister Noonan considers selling t-shirts I'm detached from that. To me, that is another issue that is happening somewhere else. We are dealing with the issues, right with us at home in our own family. Mickey Harte on the trial in Mauritius The county board issued him with a lifetime ban from any involvement in or with Ladies Gaelic football Comeuppance for a supporter in Tyrone who knocked out a referee

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This is the proportion of Dublin people believe it is okay to take or make calls, texts, emails while in the toilet, according to the BACARDI Together Poll on people's attitudes to social media. Other findings include 60% of the online population feel there should be a social media free day; 43% of Nortsiders believe they are more family orientated than Southsiders and 35% of Southsiders agree that Southsiders text more than Northsiders. So now you know.

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The Informer


Comment & Debate

I admire Leo Varadkar. He is a bright young man with a great political career ahead of him and he is not afraid to take the tough decisions. However I really hope that he takes the time to look at the bigger picture when it comes to Metro North. It is NOT just a public transport service. It is NOT simply a budgetary issue for the Department of Transport. And it is NOT a political football for various parties to score points. Saving Metro North will generate 4,600 construction jobs, 2,000 add-on jobs and a further 25,000 jobs in North Dublin. It is vital as the CSO Census 2011 reports a 13% increase in Fingal’s population. And it has support across from all public representatives, community groups and businesses in North Dublin. Fingal’s population rising to over quarter of a million for the first time ever, Minister Varadkar must

The Peter Pan Competition Winner Janet Smith Lucan

Metro North will pay ensure that the Metro North is constructed. The facts speak for themselves. The population in Fingal has risen to 273,051, which is up 13%. North Dublin from Swords to the city centre is the only area with no viable rail system. Equally important the Metro North will create sustainable employment in Dublin and to contribute much needed funds to the Exchequer. I have also looked at the number of jobs Metro North will create and the contribution these jobs will make to the Exchequer in terms of dole savings and tax contributions. When you match these with the €2 billion foreign direct investment from the successful bidders, it makes no sense to stop the construction of the Metro North at this

By Anne Devitt Fine Gael Councillor, Fingal

stage. According to the RPA, the construction of Metro North will cost between €3 billion and €3.5 billion. €2 billion will be provided by private investment from the successful bidder to construct and run the light rail service under a Public Private Partnership (PPP) agreement. The Irish Government will be required to provide a total of €700 million over a five year period starting in 2012. Appreciating €700 million is a lot of money in the current economic climate, Minister Varadkar must understand that investing this in the project over a five-year term

Metro North – The Sums

Estimated funds generated by Metro North Enabling work- 600 jobs: dole savings for 3 years ......................... €36 million 4000 construction jobs: circa 2,000 off dole for 5 years.............. €260 million 2000 indirect jobs: circa 1,000 off the dole for 5 years................. €140 million Estimated ‘tax take’ from 4,600 jobs ........................................... €300 million 25,000 jobs created once Metro North opens. ............................ €500 million Total contribution from Metro North ........................................ €1,236 million Government contribution to Metro North from 2012 -2016.............. €700 million

will generate over €100 million for the Exchequer. This will come from the tax returns of those who are employed on the construction phase, the savings on dole payments as well as those who will get jobs in the new companies expected to come to Dublin when the Metro North is up and running. 600 jobs will be created to carry out the initial ‘enabling’ work in advance of the construction phase. A further indirect 300 jobs will also be created during this phase mainly in construction supply, accommodation and retail sectors. 4,000 jobs will be created for the construction of Metro North, which facilitate passengers at Dublin Airport, national hospitals and two universities. 2,000 indirect jobs will also be created during the construction phase. Between 25,000 and 37,000 jobs

The Galway Festival Competition Winner Carol Barry From Leopardstown

will then be created locally in the following decade, according to the economic plan for Metro North. The Minister must also take into consideration the fact that decisions on all the business development plans and sustainability plans for Fingal County Council in recent times have been made against the background of Metro North providing greater access to the people of North Dublin. The Council has commitments

from industry to set up companies in the area once the Metro North is completed. Our plans for this local authority are based on this project being completed. We cannot stop now. If a company announced 25,000 jobs for Ireland, every member of the Oireachtas would be at the event and queuing up to talk to the media. So we must support Metro North for the sake of Fingal and for the sake of Dublin.

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The Informer

Green Scene

Fracking: a dirty word?


f you are a keen member of the environmental lobby you’ve probably already signed up to one or another petition to ban fracking. If you aren’t a member of that groups it’s odds on you’ve never heard the word. So what is fracking (spelt fracing by oil industry professionals), who is doing it, and why should you take an interest? Its full name is hydraulic fractioning, which means, using water to break something into small pieces, and what is being broken in this case is rock – water and a collection of chemicals are forced through existing tiny natural gaps in rock layers. So why would anyone want to do this? The answer is that the process is used to pump out oil and natural gas trapped in rock layers, and on February 14th of this year, in the dying days of the last government, licensing options were given to three oil companies. Tamboran Resources PTY Ltd has rights over 986 sq km in the Northwest Carboniferous Basin, Lough Allen Natural Gas Company Ltd gets 467 sq km in the Northwest Carboniferous Basin and Enegi Oil Plc gets 495 sq km in the Clare Basin. Which means that there are 12 Irish counties subject to fracking. And this should worry us all because there have been some disturbing events around fracking in other countries. These have included a water well exploding in Dymock Pennsylvania on New Year's Day in 2009. The state investigation revealed that Cabot Oil & Gas Company had, while extracting natural gas through fracking “allowed combustible gas to escape into the region's groundwater supplies." In the same year there was a small earthquake in Cleburne, Texas which appears to have been caused by hydraulic pressure from fracking building up along a fault line. In America the Environmental Protection Agency announced two weeks ago that it will examine claims of water pollution related to hydraulic fracturing in

Texas, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, Colorado and Louisiana. The questions that were worrying the EPA included the impact of the use of large volumes of water for fracking instead of drinking, irrigation and other water use. They also wondered whether the contaminated water might get mixed with drinking water and what would happen if it did, and how water that had been used for fracking could be cleaned. We can’t help wondering whether our own EPA is asking the same questions and what the current government is answering. Fracking requires the injection of vast quantities of water and potentially hazardous chemicals into the ground to force the release of natural gas. Energy in Depth, an oil and gas industry organisation, has published a list of chemicals in a "typical solution used in hydraulic fracturing.” These include hazardous chemicals that may cause health risks that range from rashes to cancer. Some chemicals found injected into the earth have been identified as endocrine disrupters, which interrupt hormones and glands in the body that control development, growth, reproduction and behavior in animals and humans. In fact the whole process is so dangerous that the French parliament voted on June 30 to ban it.The vote was divided along party lines, with the majority conservative party voting in favor and the opposition voting against the bill, mostly because it did not go far enough.

Skeletons at Rogerstown


here has been a wave of speculation in both the press and the blogosphere about human remains found close beside the old road alongside the Rogerstown estuary, between Rush and Lusk, in the course of EirGrid’s work on its €600 million interconnector with the UK National Grid. According to an EirGrid spokeswoman the burial site, which is of

unknown date, was not marked on any maps. Fragments of bone were spotted when workmen were backfilling the trench over installed ducting, and EirGrid’s site archeologist called in further expert assistance who confirmed that the remains were human. The site was immediately covered to protect it from rainfall and archeological work is ongoing. Local historian Kevin Thorp, the editor of Rush Community News, mentioned several possible sources for the bones ranging from the Viking settlement which is known to have existed close by to the victims of the John Tailleur shipwreck in the nineteenth century who were denied burial in local graveyards by both Catholic and Protestant clergy because their religion was unknown. Radio carbon dating will be carried out on the bones to find out exactly what period they date from.

see replacement of carbon fuels by sustainably produced biomass as one part of an overall programme, which needs to include other renewable sources of energy and government schemes for the householder such as affordable insulation retrofitting schemes, replacement of open fires and ranges with modern more efficient equivalents. ” It is hoped this will lead to the development of a national code of practice for all biomass electricity generation plants and will be adopted as THE standard to be achieved by future developers. David Shaffer, Project Manager with Mayo Renewable Power, said: “This plant will be a world class biomass project and represents significant foreign direct investment of both treasure and technology. The agreement today makes it an even better project.”

Creating sustainable jobs



n Taisce are often seen as blocking jobs and progress when they carry out their remit to protect Ireland’s built and natural heritage, but a recent agreement in Mayo shows how looking after the environment can create long term jobs. When An Taisce raised concerns over the sustainability of the source of biomass for its new 50 megawatt, all biomass, high efficiency combined heat and power project Mayo Renewable Power reacted positively and agreed a ‘Mayo Renewable Power Code of Practice for Monitoring & Control of Biomass Production’ which will ensure that the biomass crops for the plant will only be produced from suitable land and in accordance with agreed codes of practice that ensure environmental sustainability. An Taisce has withdrawn its objections to the plant and Chairman, Charles Stanley-Smith, said, “We recognise the importance of this plant and its jobs to the economic and social sustainability of the area. An Taisce Issue 102

Green things to do in July

regular feature of the summer green calendar is the Organic Centre Garden Party, which started off as a small thank you to members and is now established as one of the best days out around for delicious food and gardening advice. Sunday July 17th will see a full programme of events, led by chef Neven Maguire’s cookery demonstration in the barn and the results of the centre’s peat free compost trials.


outh tends to get missed by those driving north or south – the wee county can be the invisible county. But check out Birdwatch Ireland for details of a boat trip to look at sea birds that will be held on the first Sunday in August when the sea is calm enough. Or have a look at the amazing wildlife in the Cooley Mountains at www. You can either book a course or just head out on one of the fine walking trails that the area is full of. If you start from Carlingford you can take advantage of the towns fine collection of eateries.

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All About Dublin (1)

A Place in the City One of the most impressive eighteenth century terraces in Dublin, Marino Crescent is located on the north side just beyond Fairview Park. The houses have small front gardens and are framed by railings. Across from the terrace there is a near park. This elegant terrace is invisible to most passers-by. Today it is sandwiched between the coast road, Malahide Road and the Howth Road. Marino Crescent, also known as Clontarf Crescent, is a pleasant curved terrace of Georgian houses, erected in 1792 by Charles Ffolliot, a builder from Aungier Street in Dublin. Originally the terrace looked directly across the bay and was separated from the water by the public road. Ffolliot had a dispute with a neighbouring land owner, Lord Charlemont, over charges for crossing his property and they were at logger heads. As a reprisal Ffolliot deliberately increased the height of the three-storey terrace to block Charlemont's view of the sea from the nearby Casino. The Crescent was one of a series of terraces and villas built in this period for the wealthy and professional classes of Dublin. The residents were chiefly of the legal or medical profession, merchants or bankers. Their children's governesses took them to play in the park. The author, Abraham, better known as Bram, Stoker, was born on 8 October 1847 at number 15. He attended Trinity College and became a civil servant. His most famous work was the

The Informer

The Crescent, Marino

novel Dracula that took him six years to write. He published 18 other books mainly on gothic themes. He was manager of the Lyceum Theatre, London for 27 years, working with the actor Henry Irving. The writer, Oscar Wilde, fell in love with Florence Balcombe, daughter of a retired army officer who lived at number 1. Florence later married Bram Stoker. For a period in the early 1800s the writer, William Carleton, lived with his family at number 2 the Crescent. In 1890 the writer James Joyce at the age of eight lived with his family at nearby number 8 Inverness Road. Progress has encroached on the Crescent and it appears out of place in the modern age. Multi-storey apartments have been erected at the northern end of the terrace and the view of the sea has long been obliterated. 'Dublin's North Coast - Drumcondra Clontarf - Howth - Malahide', with paintings by Margaret Field and text by Arthur Flynn, is published by Cottage Publications. It is available from bookshops, priced around e22.

Edited by Zoz

Lesser known Dubs

Henry James O'Farrell

Born in Arran Quay in 1833, Henry James O'Farrell is still well, though not fondly, remembered in Australia. His family arrived in Melbourne in 1841. Aged 17 he entered a seminary but, after a dispute with Bishop Goold, was never ordained. He became a sheep farmer and, later a grain merchant. But business did not go well for him and he took to drinking heavily. He had a mental breakdown in 1867 and, claiming others were trying to poison him, took to waiving pistols about in front of people. He was hospitalised for a while and, on his release, moved to Sydney. His sisters sent him money to keep him going. It was noticed that he got agitated anytime that the Fenians were discussed. On 11 March 1868 he did some pistol shooting - the following day he shot Prince Alfred - the Duke of Edinburgh and the second son of Queen Victoria - in the back at a picnic in Clontarf, north of Sydney. When questioned he initially claimed that it was an assassination undertaken on behalf of a group of Melbourne Fenians, but later said:- 'From continually thinking and talking of … “the wrongs of Ireland”, I became excited and filled with enthusiasm for the subject, and it was then under the influence of those feelings that I attempted to perpetrate the deed for which I am now justly called upon to suffer.' Even though it was clear that he was insane - there never was any evidence of a plot - the verdict of the trial was never in doubt - he was found guilty of attempted murder, Prince Alfred, who was on a world tour, was not badly

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injured and made a quick recovery. He tried to get the sentence over-turned but it was not to be - O'Farrell went to the gallows at Darlinghurst on 21 April 1868. There was an odd postscript to the story, 14 years later Henry's brother, Peter, shot and wounded the now Archbishop Goold.

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First hand History "One great misery in Ireland is the number of holidays, when no work is done or wages received. Often have I seen at the cabin doors, dozens of the poor ragged children lying basking in the sun, not allowed to work, yet having, perhaps, nothing to eat. Fortunately for the Irish peasant, however, he cannot well starve, because even the poorest of them have their potato garden; but, should they not have it, potatoes can generally be bought at three halfpence for twenty-one pounds, and six quarts of butter-milk for a penny. A pig, called "the landlord,'' is generally kept, and pays the rent of the cabin. I observed on most of the commons a great number of geese, which, like the pig, cost little. . . . I entered Dublin through large suburbs, meanly built, stopped at the post-office, a handsome building, to put down the mail. After breakfasting, I went to the Castle to see the guard mounted. There is nothing remarkable in this ancient brick building. Here the Lord Lieutenant holds state levees and drawingrooms. The chapel is a neat modern Gothic building. From the Castle I drove to the Phoenix Park, which is very fine; it contains 1,186 acres, Irish plantation

The Informer

All About Dublin (2)

Edited by Zoz

Getting it wrong on the potatoes!

measure, and in circumference is five Irish miles and a half. It formerly belonged to the Knights Templars, but, being surrendered to the Crown, was converted into a deer-park in the reign of Elizabeth. The park is beautifully diversified with woodland, open level countryside, and rising ground, embellished with extensive sheets of water, and plentifully stocked with deer. It contains the vice-regal lodge, which, since the improvements made by Earl Hardwicke, the Duke of Richmond, and Lord Whitworth, has become a residence befitting a viceroy. The houses of the ranger and principal secretary, the powder-magazine, the Hibernian school, the Royal Infirmary, and a fine plain called the Fifteen Acres, where the troops in garrison are reviewed. About the centre of the park is a fluted column thirty feet high, with a phoenix on the capital, which was erected by the Earl of Chesterfield during his viceregality. At the salute battery is placed a granite column, two hundred and five feet high, in honour of the illustrious Wellington: it was built by Smirke, and the subscription amounted to £16,000.; it does not appear finished, and many faults are found with the design.

n Kingstown Pier, Publin Penny Journal, Jan. 25, 1834 In Sackville street is a very noble monument erected to the memory of the immortal Nelson: it consists of a pedestal, column, and capital of the Tuscan order, the whole being surmounted by a well executed statue of the hero, leaning on the capstan of his ship. The entire height of the column and statue is 134 feet three inches. There is a staircase within by which you ascend to the top, from whence you command a magnificent view of the city and bay of Dublin.

Amongst the handsomest squares is St. Stephen's, said to be a mile in circumference; Fitzwilliam and Merrion Squares are also handsome, but many of the largest houses belonging to the nobility are either pulled down or uninhabited. This is, no doubt, the effect of the union: the nobility, as a matter of course, follow the court. Still there is no excuse for a nobleman of large fortune not residing on his property, at least part of the year, instead of employing

agents, who it cannot be supposed have the same interest in the land as the proprietors themselves. I have heard of some landlords who never have even seen their estates, and who justify their absenteeism, from the country not being in a state to live in. The Bank, formerly the House of Parliament, is, to say the least of it, a magnificent building; near this is Trinity College, with its fine library, chapel, hall, and an elegant small

park. Also entitled to notice are the Customhouse, Four Courts, Royal Exchange, College of Surgeons, Leinster-house, now the Dublin Society-house, where there is a very splendid museum. Here I saw a very fine skeleton of the elk or moosedeer; the antlers being from tip to tip nine feet. . . . I took a drive to Enniskerry, passing the Scalp, apparently part of a hill rent in two by a convulsion of nature. I passed Colonel Howard's, Bushey Park, Lord Rathdowne's Cavatigini, the Miss Byrne's, a large place, and Mr. Grattan's. I walked through the Dargle, which is very beautiful and romantic, a thick wood with a great deal of rock, and a rapid river running below. The county of Wicklow has many beauties to boast of. I returned to Dublin by Kingstown and Black Rock; saw the great work, the new harbour; passed the LordLieutenant on horseback with another friend. The domain lately belonging to Lord Fitzwilliam (one-time Lord Lieutenant, died in 1833) was pointed out to me, now parcelled out and built upon." "Reminiscences of Half a Century," by 'An Accurate Observer,' published in London (1838)

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The Informer

Informer Interview

Motivating Hollywood Celebrities Where did you grow up? I was born beside St Patrick’s Cathedral in Dublin city centre and moved to Tallaght at about age six or seven. Do you have family? I have a son and daughter, Gavin and Orla, and a new addition to the family being my granddaughter, Alexa. Gavin and Orla continue to be a great source of help and have stepped up specifically in the charitable and business elements of my organizations How would you describe your profession? Motivational Analyst, i.e. I find the root cause of your successes to build or problems to eliminate. What are your qualifications? I am a psychotherapist, hypno-analyst, marital arts sensei, and CEO of an international wellness company called SQ Worldwide. Why did you become a psychotherapist? Starting martial arts at a very young age, I was exposed to Japanese, Korean and Chinese cultures that thought differently about health and well-being than in the West. This motivated me to go on to take psychotherapy training. Are you a spiritual person? Yes. Similar to Carl Gustav Jung, the world famous Swiss psychiatrist, I have injected spirituality into the psychological therapies after extensive studies of all the World's major religions. How do you differ to other lifestyle coaches / psychotherapists? Unlike other life coaches and psychotherapists, I am very open about my own experiences in life that were also motivating factors in the training I received. Some people may compare you to American lifestyle guru Anthony Robbins or Dr. Phil. Is this correct and what makes you different? I am not different, per se, I utilize the tools they teach and then add my own. I bring heart, humor, and lightness to even the most traumatic situations, which only an Irish person can do. Your clients include some of most powerful and influential people in Hollywood and the world, how does each client’s requirements differ? There is a blueprint in life that every person on the planet is made up from, no matter who they are (i.e. we all are attracted to pleasure and averted by pain.) Keeping this in mind, we all have our own unique experience of life and so finding what’s needed for each individual is part of the adventure that we share together as therapist and client. Can you tell us what recent projects you have you been working recently? I have just been working on the Broadway play, Spiderman - Turn Off the Dark, working with the cast and crew to help turn it around. I have also worked with actors in the current movie Transformers 3 as well as actors from the long-running popular animated series, The Simpsons. It’s all go but I enjoy my work. We know you are prohibited from mentioning any of your client’s names, but do you have any

interesting stories to tell us about working with celebrities? Yes, I once had an A-list Hollywood actor who needed my help. Because of my extremely busy schedule, I agreed to see him in my New York hotel room. Neither of us realised that the session was going to get very deep, very fast. He abreacted (recalled a trauma in his life) and remembering the anger of the situation, began to scream at the top of his voice whilst in hypnosis, causing such confusion that the police were called thinking somebody was being assaulted in the hotel. From then on, I always use offices. Do you think the people of Ireland are in a dark place at the moment? Yes, I think people are beginning to wake up from the champagne party that has been Ireland for the past 10 years, and the hangover feels dreadful. But this too will pass if we return to our community spirit and hard work that we have always thrived on in this country. How do you think we as a nation can climb out of the current recession? One of the ways would be to make our leaders not make the same mistakes by demanding that they listen to the people and not take their eye off the ball. Another way would be to begin to look around us for everything positive going on in our communities, and not focus so much on the negative which has always been a problem. Serving others is one of the greatest ways of achieving this. Why is it that the 'not so well off' seem happier than the rich? What you have never had, you will never miss. Again, it is the simple things in life that give most pleasure and are stress-releasing, not stress-making. When was the last time you walked by a river, played with your children in the park, or just went camping instead of staying in a hotel at a top resort. There is more to being rich than the amount of money in your bank account. Do people ever criticise your work? Unfortunately, in my line of work, where you deal with highly emotionally charged issues for people and organizations, there will always be those who will project their issues on you. This is called transference in the world of psychology and can be played out in criticism of myself, my work, and my organization but the understanding is, 'What Peter says about Paul, tells you more about Peter’s issues.' You have a huge following in America so much that you have just signed a major TV deal to bring you to an even wider US day-time TV audience, is this daunting for you? Going from doing live workshops attended by thousands of people at a time to being in front of a TV camera with a live audience is not daunting but a new learning curve, and I do enjoy learning. You dedicate a lot of your time to raising money for the poor of the world and even have set up your own worldwide charity called the SQ Foundation. Tell us more about that? After a trip to India in which I saw people living in devastating conditions, my late wife Linda and I decided rather than talking about it, we would do something about it. This led to us doing workshops

n Pictured, Derek with Simon Cowell at a Charity fundraiser in Hollywood

From Spiderman to Transformers, one of Ireland’s best kept secrets until now, down to earth motivational analyst to the Hollywood stars and directors, Derek O’Neill talks to Kevin O’Brien about his life and the challenges facing him as he embarks on his new adventures in America and giving all the proceeds after expenses to charity, that charity being one that we set up ourselves, SQ Foundation, to make sure that all the monies would arrive and be used properly. This foundation grew very large and is now operating in India, El Salvador, Bolivia, Scotland, Ireland, Peru, Ethiopia and the United States, in which we have built schools, orphanages, medical clinics, brought water, education, nourishment, and all basic needs with the message of hope and that they have not been forgotten. You give millions of euros to charity every year and are also helping Irish charities such as Irish Autism Action, Variety Ireland and Charity 25. In your opinion does the government do enough to help charities in the country? As far as I understand, the Irish government gives many millions every year in charity to various countries. Whether or not the government does due diligence on the use of this money is questionable. And do I feel that they do enough for Irish charities? Absolutely not. But I don't understand the politics behind this, nor do I care to be distracted by them. That’s why I feel it is my honor to be able to serve my country, my neighbours, and friends with the charitable donations

that SQ provides, and the diligent follow-up to make sure that the money is being spent wisely, getting value for every euro. You have recently started to operate workshops here in Ireland where people can come and here you speak, are these accessible to anyone? Yes. I have been in private practice for just under 20 years and have recently opened a healing center in New Ross, County Wexford to accommodate the demand for the services that I provide. People can come for a friendly chat, cup of coffee, treatments, stay over night or longer, and there I give free to lowcost talks every month. I am also available from time to time to give these talks in the greater Dublin area or around the country, time permitting and should they be required. More information on these talks can be found at What’s the saddest thing to happen to you? There were many sad events in my life, including the unnecessary death of my wife, but the very things I teach are that events like these will visit our lives from time to time, and they can cripple us or make us stronger. I choose not to dwell on the past sadness but on the future joyful possibilities. And even though my rock has left this life, she is now my rock in heaven. Does anything get you down? The one major thing that gets me down is watching people's inhumanity to other people. To see people grab at materialistic objects that never really last, only to suffer greatly when these objects are taken away again. And watching the younger children growing up with no respect whatsoever for property or elders. What does the future hold for you? If I had a crystal ball, it would probably lie to me and tell me that life is going to be wonderful. But the truth may be very different, actually. I don't know what the future holds but I am going to manifest it in as easy a way as possible. How can people get in contact with you? Through the websites,, or, or call Creacon Lodge at 051 447 666.

A few changes for big savings

The Minister of Finance has recently called for the public to start spending again to re-ignite the economy. He has reduced the VAT on various tourist related services (including hotels, restaurants and hairdressers for example). Furthermore initiatives such as Fiver Friday have really helped focus the consumers mind on spending money again but in a cost conscious way. We wanted to identify a few areas where we believe significant savings can be made on monthly outgoings which will allow you to take advantage of some of the excellent offers available with your extra cash. 1. Switch to a cheaper gas/ electricity provider ESB are now able to compete with the likes of Airtricity, Bord Gais and Flogas to offer lower cost electricity and gas. For existing ESB customers who haven’t switched in the last few years this is a very easy way to save money. Existing ESB customers can simply go online or call 1850 30 50 90. There is really now no excuse for not making savings on your electricity needs. Total savings of approx €15 per month 2. Switch to a cheaper Mortgage Protection provider with If you have a Mortgage it is likely you will have Mortgage Protection. Life Assurance rates have come down significantly in the last number of years due to a more competitive marketplace. A recent issue of the Sunday Business Post highlighted that savings of up to 30% can be made by reviewing your Life Assurance. It may therefore be worthwhile reviewing your cover to see if you can obtain a lower monthly premium. The cover you took out with the bank at the time of taking out your Mortgage may not be the most competitive available. It is important that borrowers realise that they have a choice, and that they were not under any legal obligation to purchase these types of products from their lender only. The average monthly premium for Mortgage Protection is €60 per month. A saving of 30% would equate to €18 per month. This is over €4,000 on a 20 year policy. In addition also offers 70% off the first twelve months premiums. For someone paying €60 a month this is a minimum saving of €504 in the first twelve months.This saving in the first twelve months could go towards a holiday, savings or paying off your credit card for example. Contact on 01 6853813 to get a quick quote or go online. It only takes a few minutes. Total saving of €18 per month (additional saving of €504 in the first twelve months with 3. Take advantage of the Group buying sites while the deals are still around It is still open to debate whether the retailers who advertise on group buying sites such as, and get much repeat business from them to justify the big discounts. However for consumers there can be fantastic value to be had by using these sites. If you are someone who likes to eat out you can expect to pay €20 for your meal for two rather than your normal €40. It only takes a few seconds to register and the deals come directly to your email. Total saving of €40 per month (assuming two meals per month) 4. Switch to e-mobile With e-mobile customers can enjoy unlimited talk and text for €69 per month. This compares with the Meteor Unlimited Offer of €85 per month. And now you can even get an iPhone for free as well with this contract. Further comparisons can be made at Total saving of €32 per month (€16 per month per adult) 5. Review your tax credits and claim a refund While you can only do this once a year you can also go back four years to claim a refund of monies due (medical expenses, bin charges, certain dental costs, tax relief on pension contributions/ income protection). Every situation is different but on average a refund of circa €600 is achieved. There are additional potential savings involved if you are entitled to claim flat rate expenses (Doctors, Nurses and Dentists can claim these). Contact David Twomey at . Total saving of €50 per month (€600 spread over 12 months) The above gives a total saving of €155 per month to spend as you please without making any significant changes to your lifestyle The above should not be construed as advice and is only the opinion of the author.


The Informer

Garden Growing

The delights of summer gardening I really enjoy the garden at this time of year, as in comparison to other months there really isn’t a huge amount of work to do. High summer is all about enjoying all your hard work which started many months ago in the depths of winter. While June was a very poor month on the weather front, July has started very nicely and hopefully it will continue that way. The long evenings and bright early mornings give me a marvellous lift and winter seems a very long way off. Edible goodies

My own small garden is producing an amazing array of edible goodies at the moment. I harvested some of my early potatoes last weekend that I had grown in a large container. Regular readers will know the variety is ‘Orla’. As far as I can remember four seed potatoes were planted in this container which produced about 30 spuds of different sizes but all gor-

geous. You can’t buy potatoes that taste this good. My main crop in the veg plot will stay put for a few more weeks. The courgettes are great at this time of year as they are small and very tasty, while the beetroot are swelling up nicely to be enjoyed in a few months. Holiday arrangements

If you are planning a short holiday don’t forget to make some arrangements to have your garden watered. Most of us rely on a family member or neighbour to do it, otherwise an irrigation system is a great idea. The cost about €85 and are a great investment.

I only really use mine for plants and veg that are in containers, as all the other plants in the ground can usually fend for themselves. My small pond is great now, the few small plants are in great condition and the water quality is great. We had a visitor recently, i.e. a frog ,which has now moved on. I don’t know where it came from but it was great fun to see it swimming around with the fish. Don’t forget to keep topping up the water with rain water from your water butt. The water evaporates very quickly at this time of year. Feed that grass

Tip of the month

n Pond invader!

Bring a secateurs with you when wandering about the garden. There are lots of plants like Verbascum and Foxglove, that will flower again if carefully pruneddeadheaded in July.



Gerry Norton

n National Botanic Gardens - lots of ideas Your lawn could do with a liquid feed at this time of year as they can look a wee bit tired. You will notice the effect within about three days or so. Make sure to follow the instructions exactly and don’t overdo it. Only newly established lawns should be water at this time of year, don’t waste water on your old lawn even it if looks brown, it will recover later in the year, and always remember ‘the one third rule’, don’t cut any more that one

third of new growth. Finally I would strongly recommend a visit to the National Botanic Gardens in Glasnevin. The gardens are really beautiful and you will come away with lots of ideas for your own garden no mater how large or small your garden is. It’s free admission and is a great place to spend an afternoon. The expert staff are very helpful and will answer any of your questions so don’t be afraid to ask.

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


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The Informer

Personal Finance

Pensions Levy: what can I do about it? The introduction of the Pensions Levy of 0.6% in the recent 'Jobs Budget' has caused outrage amongst the general public. The introduction of this levy provides an opportunity to review our charges to see if we can obtain a low charging structure to compensate for this new levy. There are a number of different types of charges some of which are detailed below. Typical charges vary

Pension charges vary significantly depending on the insurance company and the time the policy was taken out. The typical charges levied on pension plans are the Allocation Rate (amount of your money invested) and the Fund Management Charge. An allocation rate below 100% is effectively an entry charge. Entry charges of 5% are not uncommon. Fund Management Charges can vary depending on the types of funds you have chosen to invest in and the overall charges associated with your plan. Another charge that may be levied is what is known as a bid/offer spread. A bid/offer spread is basically the difference between the price the pension company buys units in a fund and the price it sells them to you. Typically it is 5% and is effectively a 5% charge on your investment. Ascertain exactly what you are paying

This along with 'initial units' i.e. higher management charges on the first number of years contribu-

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Customers spend countless hours analysing the cost of their home and car insurance annually and may only save €50 however by reviewing you pension you could save hundreds and possibly thousands over the lifetime of your pension plan.   Charging structures in general have become more transparent in recent years. This is due to a more competitive marketplace and advances in regulations which have imposed an obligation on providers to disclose charges levied on certain pension plans. Charges have also become more competitive as, like everything else, customers have become more savvy and have demanded more value in these recessionary times. Effective way to plan

The Pensions Levy, while a tax on capital and not to be welcomed, we believe should not act as a disincentive to plan for your retirement. Due to the tax reliefs available on premiums paid and the tax free growth of the fund a pension remains the more effective way to plan for retirement. Paddy Mahony, is a Director of, a low cost full service pensions intermediary.

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The Informer

Animal Tracks with Miriam Kerins, DSPCA

Take responsibility - microchip your pet Every week at the Dublin SPCA, Ireland’s oldest and largest animal rescue shelter, we help a number of lost cats and dogs; many bearing no identification details. We never know why they’ve become lost, they can’t tell us; nor do we know how far they’ve roamed. What we do know is – none are implanted with micro chips! I mean, how can any pet parent claim to love their animal yet fail to adequately protect them with an implanted, inexpensive, painless and permanent, piece of technology no larger than a grain of rice (right)? It’s true, we all know animals give us enormous comfort, companionship and unconditional love and I would imagine the last thing any owner wants is for them to disappear. However, it stands to reason that by nature, animals are curious; not to mention practiced escape artists, and if the front door is accidentally left open, well, your cat or dog will just venture out to see what’s going on across that busy main road. Think about it! How many times have you noticed a poster in a shop window, an ad in a local newspaper or a plea on Facebook; desperate for the safe return of a missing family pet? So, do the responsible thing and have your pet implanted with a fast, painless to your pet -and your pocket- microchip! Our vet can implant a non reactive chip, the size of a single grain of rice, under your pet’s skin. To be precise, between the shoulder blades, by

way of a needle. This tiny chip holds your pet’s unique information; visible only through a special scanning device. The unique number on the chip, along with the name of your pet and your own contact information is then registered on our data base and the following is how it all works: 1) If a member of the public finds your pet they can contact us using the 087 ‘phone number on the special disc around his collar. We ask them to quote the four digit pin number at the base of the disc. Upon hearing this, our operator can identify the lost animal’s owner, who is then contacted. 2) If your pet is found and brought to our shelter, a vet or a dog pound, but is not wearing his disc; staff will scan him using a special scanner. This exercise will reveal his identifying details and the owner is contacted. Remember, most animals are found by members of the public who don’t have micro chip scanners as part of their kitchen appliances. We cannot stress enough that all animals should wear proper fitting, appropriate collars and tags. However, as a permanent form of ID and the best possible insurance of getting your beloved pet home safely, we recommend you have a micro chip implanted. For more information log onto or email me at Miriam Kerins is Education Officer with the Dublin SPCA.

Why should you consider using Hypnosis? By Tom Ryan Hypnosis is an altered state of consciousness during which extraordinary events may occur. it is powerfully effective and is the most misunderstood of all therapies. Hypnosis brings us into resourceful states of mind. one can stop smoking or change habits in just one session. it’s a wonderful solution for stress or to stimulate one to achieve their true potential. ‘scientific study… has begun to identify how the approach can work to alter processes such as memory and pain perception…" sarah Graham, ‘scientific American’ June 2005 Dr Jack Gibson a surgeon at naas Hospital performed four and a half thousand operations using only hypnosis as an anaesthetic. Hypnosis has been practiced for 200 years and is now used extensively by swedish and Russian olympic Athletes to maximise their performance. The Most Effective Therapy A survey of psychotherapy literature by Dr. A. Barrios revealed the following recovery rates (source: American Health Magazine) • Hypnotherapy: 93% recovery after 6 sessions • Behavior Therapy: 72% recovery after 22 sessions • Psychoanalysis: 38% recovery after 600 sessions What is Hypnosis? Hypnosis is an increased state of receptivity to suggestion. However one will never accept suggestions contrary to their morals.

Hypnos is a Greek word meaning sleep. However electroencephalographic (EEG) tests show hypnosis to be a waking state. you may remember the experience of a teacher in school droning on and your mind drifted like the experience of a music lover closing their eyes and merging into the musical experience. The key to change Hypnosis is a highly successful therapy that can unlock ones true potential. This is due to its ability to bypasses the critical faculty of the conscious mind so direct communication with the subconscious can take place. The programmes that run all automatic processes and habits can then be directly communicated with and influenced. Our bio computer Think of the mind as a bio computer and the Hypnotherapist as a programmer. This explains the profound influence hypnosis can have on the mind. imagine the conscious mind as an operating system with lots of programmes running in the background with additional dormant ones ready to run when called upon. We need to update our programmes as we change and grow. programmes can be in conflict with each other. We can have viral programmes disrupting the entire system. Hypnotherapy is the most effective way of dealing with the mind. For more information Phone: 086/3366713

Seven Critical Qualities you should expect from a Quality Electric Gate Company An essential guide to choosing the right gate automation company - whether your budget is large, medium or small.

You have got to choose your Electric Gate Company carefully - not all are the same. To help you identify the best Electric Gate Company, no matter of the size of your gate or your budget, here are seven critical qualities you should expect. 1. You do not have to pay a fortune. A quality gate automation installer can do a first class job at a competitive price. 2. Designing and building gates and installing automation is a skilled profession. Look for a company who has many years experience in gate automation. 3. Choose a company that will freely give you expert advice about the various systems that are available, the best method of operating your gate and the size and design of your gate. They will help you design the gate that suits you entrance best. These small points often make a world of a difference to you. 4. A quality electric gate company should freely offer reference and testimonials from previous customers - to demonstrate customer satisfaction, quality and reliability. 5. A quality electric gate company will look after all aspects of the installation, including the provision of power supply, the gate design and manufacture, installation and automation and after sales service. 6. A quality electric gate company will show you all aspects of the gate operation, including what to

EXCLUSIVE REPORT do if the power is off - so that you never become trapped by your gates. 7. The best electric gate companies will provide you with an out of hours contact number in case of an emergency. They will also provide a comprehensive guarantee on their work and equipment, and provide an excellent after sales service. An Electric Gate Company you can trust one companies approach is simple - they see you, their customer, as ‘the Boss’. owner Adrian McGivern’s father founded the business 22 years ago and based it on providing real value and good old fashioned hard work and quality workmanship. He wants you to have the very best electric gates with the highest quality equipment and materials that you can get anywhere. Plus they are surprisingly competitively priced. The company, AutoGate Ireland had been in business for 22 years. Few companies have more experience in building and installing modern electric gate systems. Even more impressive, they put their money where their mouth is by guaranteeing that you will be

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Beauty Notes


with Kathleen Rowley

Health & Beauty

The Informer

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Manicures and pedicures aren’t known for being everlasting. They chip and they smudge. Sometimes a nail is ruined even before you get home from the salon. Usually just a few days after a manicure, your polish doesn’t have that high gloss shine anymore! Now you can say good-bye to chips, smudges, and dry time and say hello to Shellac Nail Colour. This innovative nail polish goes 'On like Polish. Wears like Gel. Off In Minutes.' More important, once applied, you get 2-3 weeks of high gloss

Some new and exciting products on the market…

With one sold every four seconds Lancôme’s Hypnôse mascara is the stuff of legends! The enigmatic French brand has updated its trusty mascara and created Hypnôse Dolls Eyes. A new wand, formula and even fragrance means this mascara really opens up your eyes and gives a ‘false doll-lash effect’. Once the mascara is applied there is a visible difference in volume and curve but the lashes are not weighed down or clumpy looking. (€25.50 available from 11th July) Recession and earth friendly brand The Body Shop have a new Honey Bronze range. Honey is known as one of nature’s best moisturisers – it’s used in the range as when skin is moisturised it feels and looks smooth, so you can enjoy even application and a natural-looking bronzed and beautiful complexion. Discover new Honey Bronze Shimmering Dry Oil, Brilliance Powder, Bronzing Gel for Face, Lip Nectar and Bronzing Powder. These products are ideal whether you want a subtle hint of bronze, or you prefer deeper tones. Bobbi Brown cosmetics have become synonymous with understated beauty. Its new Tortoise Shell Eye Palettes (€54) come in two ranges which include eight eye shadows each. Sand is palette for lighter skin tones, with light to dark shadows in flattering warm neutrals. The eight shadows in this palette are designed to be layered–there's no blending required. Bronze is a flattering collection of warm neutral makeup for medium to darker skin tones; this palette lets you go from soft to smoky in no time flat.

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shine with no chipping and looking like you just left the salon. Soak-off gels look like polish but last much longer, because they are cured onto the nail with an ultraviolet lamp. The colors are hypoallergenic, and '3-Free' - no formaldehyde, toluene or DBP. It is very important that the Polish is applied and removed by a professional manicurist. Trying to remove it yourself will damage your nails. It goes on with a base coat, two colour coats, and then a top coat. But after each coat your nails will go under a special ultraviolet lamp which will also leave your nails dry as soon as you're done. Goodbye to flip-flops in the snow post pedicure. A predecessor product, hard gels, took too long to remove and involved filing, which damaged nails. However, unfortunately the new gel polishes won't work for everyone! If your nails are dry, or there’s flaking of the natural nail, the polish will crack or chip where those peelings are. So for all those women out there who are not coming to the salon for a manicure right now, they are going to be coming for Shellac, and they are going to be blown away.” Linda, Senior Therapist, Rathgar Laser & Beauty Clinic Tel: 014976434


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Health Issues

I'm travelling to a malaria prone area

Q: I am going on safari in Botswana next month for two weeks. Can you let me know what malaria medication is the best to take? Are there any herbal alternatives I could take instead? A: Malaria is a disease which is carried by mosquitoes of the Anopheles genus. Its range is extensive and malaria can be contracted in most of Africa, southern Asia and much of South America. It is caused by a parasite with a complex life-cycle, relying on both humans and mosquitoes for its development. Simply put, a mosquito infected with the parasite bites a human to extract a meal of blood and injects the parasite into the blood stream from their saliva. In the human body, the parasite grows and reproduces in the liver before being released to attack red blood cells. The victim can then be bitten by another mosquito which picks up the parasite allowing it to be passed, via the mosquito to another victim. Malaria affects about 400 million people worldwide each year, about 2 to 3 million of whom will die from the disease and so should be regarded as a serious, potentially fatal disease. If travelling to any area where malaria occurs, it is essential to take anti-malarial medication. There are NO herbal medications or vitamin combinations which are effective in preventing malaria. It is foolhardy to rely on good luck to avoid contracting malaria. There are a number of different medications that can used to prevent malaria. Which medications are effective vary from region to region and are also subject to change so you should contact your doctor who will help you

decide which medication is right for you. Currently, there are three medications that are recommended for malaria prevention in Botswana (and most of sub-Saharan Africa). One of the most popular choices is a drug called Malarone. This generally has fewer side effects than other antimalarials and has the advantage of a shorter course than other drugs. It is however, very expensive, with a course necessary for a 14 day trip likely to cost over â‚Ź100. Mefloquine (sold under trade name Lariam) is another option. It is cheaper than Malarone and has the advantage of only having to be taken once a week. The downside however is that it has a tendency to cause psychiatric side effects which can range from abnormal dreams on the night after taking it, to depression and even occasionally overt psychosis. For this reason it is not recommended for anyone who has a history of psychological problems. Although it can be started one week before travelling, doctors often prescribe a three week trial beforehand to ensure that you can tolerate it before you travel. Lariam needs to be con-

tinued for four weeks after your return as well. Doxycycline is also recommended for malaria prevention. It is generally well tolerated, although it should be taken with food and washed down with plenty of water. Occasionally it can make your skin very sensitive to sunlight so you should ensure that you wear plenty of sunscreen at all times. It also needs to be continued for four weeks after your return. Although each of the above medications is effective at preventing malaria, due to problems of resistance, they do not absolutely guarantee that you won't get it. For this reason it is important to take insect repellent with you (and to actually use it)! The optimum repellent is one containing 50% DEET. It is particularly important to use this at dusk when the mosquito is at its most active. It should be applied to any exposed skin, except around the eyes, mouth and the corners of the nose. It will also help to wear long sleeves and trousers. If you are travelling independently it is best to take a mosquito net with you for night time use. If travelling on an organised tour, enquire with them as to whether mosquito nets are provided. Malaria can have a prolonged incubation period, so although you may be feeling fine on your return home, there is a small chance that you will develop malaria symptoms up to one year after your return. The initial symptoms of malaria include severe headache, fever, joint pain and profuse periodic sweating. If you develop any of these symptoms, you should seek medical attention straight away and inform your doctor that you have been travelling in an area with malaria.

The Informer

Ask the Pharmacist With Eoin Meany

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

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

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Family Focus

The Informer

Helping teenagers reach their goals Learning to talk with the TV on

Make it Happen: A Success Guide for Teenagers by Padraig Lawlor and Philip O’Callaghan is an Irish motivational book aimed directly at teenagers, enabling them to achieve their goals. This interactive guide examines the subconscious and the power of thoughts/ beliefs in influencing actions – much in the same vein as hit-film Inception. This is a vital book not only for teenagers, but also parents and career guidance teachers. Make it Happen is not like a serious adult self-help guide, but genuinely teenage-friendly. It uses styles and techniques such as ‘Channel Hop’, ‘Reality Bites’, ‘Replay’, and other reader-friendly terms to highlight and examine the most important aspects of the book. It focuses on the subconscious, and shows teenagers how

easy it can be to achieve any goal or dream. By interspersing technical and informative notes with real-life stories and examples of Make it Happen’s strategies in practice, this fast paced and varied book ensures the teenage reader stays captivated. Modern day examples such as U2, Facebook, and the X-Factor also feature to emphasise points, with the attractive and colourful layout further appealing to the target market. Make it Happen: A Success Guide for Teenagers is published by Liberties Press and costs e14.99 from bookshops.

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The Irish Association of Speech and Language Therapists (IASLT) recently published guidelines into how much time young children should spend watching TV. They say that research has shown that watching TV does not improve a child’s vocabulary or communication skills. It is not interactive, therefore it is a passive activity as the TV does not talk back. For children under two years, the IASLT recommends no more than a half an hour per day of television. This can increase to an hour per day for 3-5 year olds. There are a number of things that parents can do to make their children’s TV watching a more positive learning experience for them: Get books related to your child’s favourite programme so that you can sit and talk about the characters in an interactive way. Five minutes of interaction with a book is much more valuable to a child’s developing language than 30 minutes passively watching TV Talk about what is on screen in order to encourage your child to talk. Talk about the characters in the programme. How do they feel and why? What do you like or don’t like about specific characters? What character would you like to be and why? Young children are easily distracted. Turn off the television when it is not being watched as the background noise can affect your child’s ability to talk and listen.

Pregnancy and work in Ireland

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2,300 mothers across the country took part in a recent Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI) survey into the attitude of their employers while they were pregnant, maternity leave and how they were treated on returning to their job. Up to 30 per cent said they experienced unfair treatment at work during pregnancy: 5 per cent said they were dismissed, made redundant or forced to leave because of mistreatment.

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Just take a look at this cute gear for littlies. Both little girls wear long sleeve dress approx. e35 and two pack leggings approx e20 from Mamas and Papas. Call 0845 268 2000 or 1890 882 363 for stockists in Ireland A pregnancy essential, the stripe T-shirt is a favourite with many mums to be. This one costs approx e30 from Mamas and Papas.


The Informer

Graham Connor's Movie Advice

Grease Win tickets to see

at the Grand Canal Theatre


Bad Teacher HHHHH Directed by Jake Kasdan. Starring: Cameron Diaz, Lucy Punch, Jason Segel and Justin Timberlake

Transformers: Dark of the Moon HHHHH Directed by Michael Bay; Starring: Shia LeBeouf, Rosie Huntington Whiteley, Josh Duhamel and Tyrese Gibson.

Elizabeth Halsey is a bad person, and a bad teacher. When the romancing of a wealthy co-worker fails miserably Elizabeth decides she needs a boob job to nab a rich husband and maybe her class results could help her get it. Bad Teacher has a great ensemble comedy cast but unfortunately the script (written by the men that brought us the woeful 'Year One') lets them all down as it runs out of steam far too early. There are no standout moments in the film but plenty of scenes that will make you grin, but with a cast as strong as this grinning isn’t enough. Jason Segel, as the dogged gym teacher, and Phyllis Smith as Diaz’s wonderfully dowdy and reluctant friend keep the film ticking along, as does Lucy Punch’s psycho perfect teacher. Once the film’s focus changes from shallow Diaz to her quest for something resembling affection then the film picks up but unfortunately, it is too little, too late. Advice: Wait for the DVD.

The Autobots discover their human allies have been keeping secrets. During the Apollo space missions they discovered a Cybertron space ship on the moon. Now the Autobots must find it before the Decepticons can unleash a fury to end the human race. Let us get one thing straight, none of the Transformer movies have ever been complicated or challenging. They are bombastic, loud, easily digestible and ultimately great fun. Transformers 3 gives you loads of bang for your buck, but very little else. At nearly three hours long it is the longest of all three and director Bay tries to fill up the time with loads of explosion eye candy, namely Rosie Huntington Whitely. It’s just a pity she can’t act and Shia LeBeouf looks completely uninterested. A step up from the second film but nowhere near as enjoyable as the first. Advice: Built for a big screen

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The Informer

Great times for Dubs fans

Dublin GAA Outside of the boot

with Mick Hanley GAA Sportsdesk on 103.2 Dublin City fm Wednesdays @ 7pm

It has never being a better time to be a Dublin GAA supporter although it might cost you a small fortune. Trying to fit all the games that our county stars of men’s football and hurling, and ladies football and camogie into our diaries is proving difficult at this time. There is an array of activity and with that comes some successes. In men’s football as I write, our senior team are about to enter another Leinster final, up against Wexford this time out. Win or lose they will still be on the road in the All-Ireland series for at least one more game and hopefully until September. On the hurling front Dublin’s minors, Under 21s and seniors all reached a

Leinster final for the first time in GAA history. Hats off to Shay Boland’s minors as they overcame a late challenge from Kilkenny to take the honours. Unfortunately, the seniors came up against a rejuvenated Kilkenny side with Tommy Walsh, Henry Shefflin, Michael Fennelly and Richie Power returning to the side that the Dubs defeated in the Allianz National league final. Dublin have been cursed with injuries since the league final and the power of the ‘Cats’ was too much on the day. Dublin now head to the qualifiers and looking at the permutations they will probably play the winners of Limerick and Antrim. The Under 21 hurlers are up against

Wexford in Wexford Park attempting to retain their title that they won when beating the Model county in a fascinating game in Parnell Park last year. It will be winner takes all here as there is no backdoor in the under 21 grade as you head into the All-Ireland semi-finals. In ladies football, Dublin were going into the championship series as All-Ireland holders but Meath shocked them in the Leinster semi-final at Portmarnock winning by a point and now the ‘Jackies’ must head on the tourist route if they are to reclaim the Brendan Martin trophy. But it hasn’t been all doom and gloom as the ladies under 14, under 16 and minors have all won Leinster titles this year.

Our camogie girls are going through a transition phase at present and the success of winning two All-Ireland junior titles is a distant memory. The seniors and juniors are struggling somewhat in their championship but the minors continue to make progress which is good for the future. Finally, a big cheer for the Ballymun Kickams football feile team who won the All-Ireland title this month. Former Dublin footballer Paddy Christie managed the side as they ran out winners against the local St.Finbarrs club in Pairc Ui Chaoimh. Not a bad year so far and more to come. Support the Dubs and enjoy.

Golf tips with Aideen Rogers

Setting up correctly to the golf ball for any fairway shot and how to remember 1. Posture and solid stance: with your feet together or slightly apart you have to bring your upper body and shoulders over enough so that it allows your arms and hands to hang from your shoulders (your shoulders should not feel rounded or slouched in any way and your legs should still be fairly straight at this point to help you maintain as much height as possible), your arms and hands are hanging just in front of your toe line when you look down. Step shoulder width apart (the inner step of your foot to shoulder width) and un-lock your knee’s to create a solid feeling stance through the balls of your feet (no-one should be able to push you over) and at this stage your arms and hands should still be hanging just in front of your toe line when you look down! This is the place in our set up to grip the golf club. *(pin a piece of string onto the front of one of your shoulders and when you un-lock your knee’s, your arms and hands should be hanging downwards with the piece of string just in front of your toe line!) 2. Grip and ball position for a right handed golfer: we have now established that we hold the golf club where our arms and hands hang! Before taking your grip we must make sure we have the ball and the club face set in the correct position in our stance (the bottom part of your club, called your leading edge, lies square and fairly flat to the ground). For a pw-7 iron the ball/club face is in the centre of our stance (making sure your stance is the correct width) and the top of the golf club (grip) is left side of our body along with a fairly straight left arm, “under your heart“. This will create an angle in the shaft down to the ball when you look down. With the club and your left arm set this will help us grip the club correctly in our left hand. (the golf club should have the feeling of being held in the fingers and not in the palm of your hand). • Mobile 087-9906738

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The Informer

Sandyford In Brief... Concert at Airfield

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Playing at Airfield House, Kilmacud on Wednesday July 20 at 8pm are “This Is How We Fly”. This unique contemporary folk band first came together through a 2010 Dublin Fringe Festival commission to play a one-off show. The group have performed ever since. Fusing Irish traditional music, improvised jazz and electronics, Swedish fiddle music and traditional dance, the group are one of a kind. The band features Caoimhín Ó Raghallaigh on fiddle and hardanger fiddle, Seán Mac Erlaine on bass clarinet, saxophones and live electronics, Peter Berndalen on drums and percussion and Nic Gareiss on percussive dance. Tickets are €16/14 with concessions.

'Port Authority' at the Mill Drama at Mill Theatre on July 15 and 16 - Port Authority is the hit play from leading Irish dramatist, Conor McPherson. First staged in 2001 at the New Ambassabors Theatre in London, Port Authority went on to be a success in Ireland and New York. The play tells of three interwoven lives and the challenges of intimacy and relationships in modern day Ireland. This new production is directed by Peter Reid (Krapp’s Last Tape, The Birthday Party, Waiting for Godot, Happy Days). Performed by Dick Tóibín, Art Kearns and Edwin Mullane. Tickets are €18/15 with concessions.

Martello Towers of Dublin exhibition Martello Towers of Dublin is a joint public exhibition between Fingal and Dun Laoghaire/Rathdown County Council running until the end of August 2011. The display features 50 panels documenting the history of the 28 Dublin Towers from their construction in the early 19th century until today. Stretching from Balbriggan to Bray, Dublin's Martello Towers were built to defend the capital from French invasion in the early years of the 19th century, and the exhibition looks at why they were built, where the idea for the Towers came from, their military role, how they are being used today, and where other similar Towers are found across the globe.

IADT places for unemployed announced Dr. Annie Doona, President of Dun Laoghaire Institute of Art, Design and Technology (IADT), has announced the securing of funding for over 135 places for the unemployed, to be offered through the Springboard programme. The Springboard initiative, launched last month by the Minister for Education and Skills, Ruairi Quinn, TD, is a programme for jobseekers, which will provide 6,000 new places on higher education programmes across Ireland. The initiative is targeted at the unemployed who, with some up skilling, could fill current or future job shortages. Dr. Doona said that “At IADT we aim to offer opportunities across the traditional boundaries of practice. We do this through our unique blend of programmes and our strong relationship with industry and the creative and cultural economies” “Yesterday’s announcement is very significant for the economic prosperity of this county, said An Cathaoirleach, Cllr. John Bailey. “ We are proud to be associated with a third level institution that continues to offer so many innovative and exciting educational programmes, especially those that offer opportunity for the unemployed to up-skill with a view to re-entering the workforce”.

Crossing the Atlantic for ALONE Two Irish sailors, Darren Nicholson and Michael Murphy are currently preparing to tackle one of the most gruelling and prestigious ocean races in the world. Aimed at amateurs, the TransQuadra, is an adrenalin fuelled two part race across the Atlantic ocean. The 100 entrants will set sail on July 10th, leaving St. Nazaire on the Brittany Coast to Madeira, taking approximately 10 days to cover 1,200 km. The second stage, taking place in January 2012 will double the distance covered, clocking in at nearly 2,400 km. . Both sailors are undertaking such a mammoth journey for the Dublin charity ALONE. ALONE provides a vital befriending and support service for older people, including affordable housing, yet does not receive any state funding for its good work. Both sailors have asked for any well-wishers to make a donation to ALONE.

Sandyford Informer July 2011  
Sandyford Informer July 2011 page 12 opinion page 3 20,000 copieS deLiver...