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INSIDE: Remembering a blooming good flower festival P10

Cycling: Local rider takes Euro track gold in Italy Page 32

Football: St Peregrine’s ladies maintain run in Cup tie Page 31

ALSOINSIDE: GALLERIES ....................10 MOTORS ........................18 BUSINESS .................... 21 TRAVEL......................... 22 ENTERTAINMENT ........ 24 CLASSIFIEDS ............... 26

August 18, 2011

EXHIBITION: Show of paintings and photographs of bygone era See Page 8

€6m for work on vital N2N3 link route Q LAURA WEBB

CONSTRUCTION on a vital piece of infrastructure in Dublin West linking the N2 to the N3 will get underway this September following the allocation of €6m worth of funding by the Department of Transport. Transport Minister and local TD Leo Varadkar said: “This is a major breakthrough for the transport network in Dublin West, as the road will provide

a crucial link between the N2 and the N3. “The new road will relieve traffic on the N3 in the Mulhuddart and Hollystown areas, and open up new industrial lands in north Blanchardstown for job creation. The total cost of the project is €24m but some €15m will be recovered from levies imposed on land owners and developers.” Full Story on Page 3

Field of dreams: Local firm wins business competition GEORGE Howlett and Philip Gillen,

directors of local firm, Safefood 360, proudly show off their award after they were announced winners of the LINC JumpStart 2011 Annual Business Competition recently.

As winners of the competition they received a prize worth €25,000. Safefood 360 is a web-based safety management system. Full Story on Page 5

2 BLANCH GAZETTE 18 August 2011

ATTACK Local estate is held to ‘ransom’ by group of kids

Youths pelt council workers with stones in D15 Q LAURA WEBB

A LOCAL estate was held to “ransom” when out-of-control youths pelted council workers, who were attempting to fix a broken fire hydrant, with stones in Dublin 15. The attack on the council staff has been condemned by local Fine Gael councillor Kieran Dennison who said: “How in a city like

Dublin can this type of thing happen, that a group of kids can hold a whole estate to ransom like that? It is just unacceptable.” “The council staff tried to fix it and they were stoned. They had no option but to turn off the whole water to the estate.” Council staff were finally forced to cut off the water supply to the entire Fortlawn area in an attempt to

deal with the situation. Speaking to the Gazette, a spokesperson for FCC confirmed there was “interference with fire hydrants in both Wellview and Fortlawn Estates”. Fingal said that normal water supply was restored a few days later adding: “Because of water conservation issues throughout the Dublin Region, avoidable water wastage cannot be tolerated.

“Fingal County Council apologises for having to take drastic action to deal with these situations. Residents are encouraged to report any incidents of criminal damage like this in the future, including the identity of any vandals, so the council and the gardai can take appropriate action,” the spokesperson added. Meanwhile, Councillor Dennison said he was urging parents to see if their children


‘Fingal County Council apologises for having to take drastic action to deal with these situations’ ------------------------------------------------------------------

were involved in the incident: “I would ask parents in the area to check to see if their kids were involved and to what extent. “Obviously these kids have parents somewhere, and most

Stations are to be upgraded A NUMBER of Dublin 15 train stations are set to be refurbished on the Maynooth line as part of a €2m upgrade project. The stations will include Ashtown, Castleknock and Coolmine. We l c o m i n g t h e announcement by the Department of Transport, local TD and Minister Joan Burton said the objective of the project would be to “enhance customer’s facilities and presentation at train stations along the Maynooth line”. “This is to be greatly welcomed as the Maynooth line is one of the fastest-growing routes in the Irish Rail network with approximately 15,000 passenger journeys daily. “In recent years, the frequency of the service has improved and the MP3 Parkway Docklands route was introduced. However, the stations have not been upgraded since they were constructed and are in need of modernisation. These works will provide a more welcoming environment for customers and it is anticipated that the works will be completed by the end of the year.”

likely in the estate and there seems to be no parental control or parental interest in what happened. It was probably the first good weather for a while, and obviously someone had the bright idea to do this.”

Launch: Roses red-dy to help THE Rose of Tralee International Festival 2011 finalists helped celebrate the launch of the new Carlton Hotel in Blanchardstown recently. Formerly The Plaza Hotel, Tyrrelstown, the Carlton Hotel Blanchardstown was launched in the company of the 32 Roses. The Carlton Hotel Group is one of the main sponsors of the Rose of Tralee, and every year the Roses begin their Official Rose Tour at the Carlton Hotel Dublin Airport. This year the location of the Ball was changed to the new Carlton Hotel Blanchardstown to coincide with its launch. The Roses then travelled to Carlton Shearwater Hotel in Ballinasloe in Co Galway on Wednesday and met their escorts at the Carlton Castletroy Park Hotel in Limerick yesterday. On Friday they were due to arrive at the Carlton Hotel Tralee for the world-famous festival. Pictured is last year’s Rose of Tralee winner, Clare Kambamettu with Daithi O Se.


HSE denies daytime-only plan for A&E at Connolly Hospital Q LAURA WEBB

THE HSE dismissed claims by the Socialist Party that it plans to turn the accident and emergency service at Connolly Hospital into a daytimeonly service. According to local Councillor Ruth Cop-

pinger (SP) the HSE is currently costing a daytime-only accident and emergency service for Connolly. This week the local councillor called on the HSE to clarify its plans for the A&E service at Connolly. But when contacted by the Gazette, a HSE spokesperson said: “(The) HSE Dublin North East must comply with its statutory obligations and remain within its allocated budget. “Every effort will be made to do that in a way that has the least impact on patients and clients.” Management at the

hospital are examining all options to ensure they remain within budget by year end. “There is no plan to change the role and function of the Emergency Department at Connolly Hospital.” Resisted

Representatives of the Socialist Party in Dublin West, including Joe Higgins TD and Cllr Coppinger, say any attempt to downgrade Connolly will be “resisted by the community who depend on it”. “Staffing of the A&E and hospital generally has been run down to

intolerable levels. “There are now only half the number of registrars required for casualty, with nursing levels pared back and all locum recruitment banned by a formal instruction to hospital management in a threatening letter of July 22,” said Cllr Coppinger. “If the HSE is allowed to downgrade to an 8am8pm A&E, the entire hospital would effectively be downgraded. It would also place huge pressure on the A&E at Mater, Beaumont and other Dublin hospitals, already under strain. “Savage cuts in the

order of €20 million have taken place in the hospital’s budgets in recent years. This is in the context of a greatly-increased population in greater Blanchardstown and the wider catchment,” she added. Meanwhile, local TD and Minister for Transport, Sport and Tourism Leo Varadkar accused the Socialist party of “exploiting concerns over Connolly Hospital’s Emergency Department”. “The HSE has confirmed that there are no plans to ‘change the role and function’ of the emergency department in the hospital.

“This hasn’t stopped the Socialist Party from running to the barricades and stoking up concerns for its own political ends. “Instead of trying to find practical solutions to the deep problems afflicting Ireland, time and again the Socialist Party prefers to indulge in cheap rhetoric. “For tunately, the Government prefers to take a more level-headed approach. I will be meeting with Health Minister James Reilly to discuss the finances at Connolly Hospital, and to highlight the need to safeguard critical services,” he said.

18 August 2011 BLANCH GAZETTE 3

TRANSPORT Works due to begin in September

€6 million worth of funding for vital infrastructure Q LAURA WEBB

CONSTRUCTION on a vital piece of infrastructure in Dublin West, linking the N2 to the N3, will get underway this September following the allocation of €6 million worth of funding by the Department of Transport. It’s hoped the new link will relieve traffic on the N3 between Clonee and Blanchardstown. The first phase of the road, from Clonee/ Damastown to Tyrrelstown is the only part of the link road complete. This final phase is constructing a road between Tyrrelstown and the Cherryhound junction on the N2. Once the final part of the road is complete, local TD and Minister for Transport Leo Varadkar said he was hopeful that the new road will relieve traffic on the N3 between Clonee and Blanchardstown, on the Ratoath Road through Hollystown, and the rural road that currently links Hollystown to Tyrrelstown. Planning permission is already in place, and Fingal County Council has approved a contractor to carry out the work, due to start in September. The Department made the €6 million funding available under the condition that the money is spent this year. The funding for this project was diverted from another road project that has stalled. The Minister said the funding represented a major breakthrough as the road has been planned for years, but was never progressed due to a lack of finance. “I am very pleased to allocate €6 million to this important road project. This is a major breakthrough for the transport network in Dublin West, as the road will provide a crucial link between the

N2 and the N3. “The new road will relieve traffic on the N3 in the Mulhuddart and Hollystown areas, and open up new industrial lands in north Blanchardstown for job creation. The total cost of the project is €24 million but some €15 million will be recovered from levies imposed on land owners and developers.” Meanwhile, local Cllr Kieran Dennison (FG) added: “This new road will take north bound traffic away from local roads in Blanchardstown, and provide better access to business parks and residential areas such as Hollystow n and Tyrrelstown. It will eventually form part of an outer ring route from the Naas road to the M1 north of the airport. “I have long campaigned for funding for this project and I’m delighted that Minister Varadkar has given

Local TD and Minister for Transport Leo Varadkar says he is hopeful the new road will relieve traffic

approval. “This road also clears the way for development of a large retail park,

One Five West, beside the Park Plaza Hotel at Tyrrelstown,” Cllr Dennison added.


Teams to battle it out in aid of St Francis MEMBERS of An Garda Siochana and Dublin Fire Brigade will bat it out in a cricket showdown at the Phoenix Park in aid of St Francis Hospice in Blanchardstown later this week. Cricket is the chosen sport for the charity match between members of An Garda Siochana and Dublin Fire Brigade. The game will take place on Friday, August 19. Local Blanc h a r d s t ow n s i s t e r s , Clodagh and Louise, are running the event in memory of their late father. On the day there will be a range of raffle prizes with tickets being sold in advance of the game and on the day. Buckets will also be on hand to help with fundraising.

4 BLANCH GAZETTE 18 August 2011

SUMMER Many politicians planning staycations

Minister Leo Varadkar would encourage everyone to holiday in Ireland while Minister Fitzgerald TD plans to spend time in Connemara

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TDs divulge their plans for a holiday Q HIROMI MOONEY, LAURA WEBB AND PAUL HOSFORD

WITH everyone tightening their belts and counting the pennies, most TDs are planning staycations this summer. This week, the Gazette chats to them about their favourite holiday spots and how they plan to relax over the summer break. Tourism Minister and TD for Dublin West Leo Varadkar is also joining the staycation clan with a holiday in Ireland this summer. However, he does hope to spend some time in either NewYork or Spain too: “I’m taking at least one holiday in Ireland this year, and would encourage everyone to do the same. There are some great deals to be had in Ireland, even at this late stage. All the signs suggest the tourism industry is picking up this year, which is great news for our economy. I also hope the Jobs Initiative, which focused heavily on the tourism sector, will help to kick-start economic recovery and create jobs. “For myself, I intend to take a few days in Kerry. I’ll be staying near Killar-

ney, where the Tourism & Sport sections of my Department are located. But I intend to get plenty of time off to explore the county.” Meanwhile, Dublin North Fine Gael TD Alan Farrell says that he will not be holidaying abroad this year due to “the imminent arrival of my first child”, but says that he may visit his sister’s family in Louisburgh, County Mayo. “I regularly visit Louisburgh, both off-peak and during the summer months, and, is an ideal place to relax after busy periods in political life,” he says. “I would certainly encourage people to holiday at home and spend their money in the Irish economy.” Minister for Children and Dublin Mid West TD, Frances Fitzgerald, is a huge fan of West Cork and says she plans to visit friends in Schull and spend time in Connemara this August. “This summer I will be spending time in Connemara, which is one of my favourite places in Ireland. I plan to revisit West Cork as I have had some fantastic family holidays

there in Schull over the years.” One of the two women in the Cabinet with a senior portfolio, the Minister also plans to catch up on some books: “I have been inundated with recommendations from friends so I have a nice pile accumulating. I am looking forward to reading Room, by Emma Donoghue and also A Visit From the Goon Squad, by Jennifer Egan.” But the mum of three says it will be a shorter break than usual, adding: “My summer break won’t be long as I have a lot of work going to do in the Department of Children and Youth Affairs so most of my time during the Dáil recess will be spent working in our new office in Mespil Road.” Meanwhile, In Dun Laoghaire, Tanaiste Eamon Gilmore also plans to holiday in Ireland while Dublin South TD, Olivia Mitchell, who recently became a grandmother again, said she plans to spend as much time as she can with her grandchildren. Fellow Dublin South TD, Alex White, says that he was going to Portugal

with his family during the last week of July and spending the rest of his time in Ireland. “During August I’ll be spending time in Wexford, Kerry and in County Sligo. I plan to bring my bike and to enjoy long summer evenings cycling the country roads of rural Ireland,” he says. Independent TD Shane Ross says he plans to holiday with his family by travelling by boat from Rosslare to Fishguard in Wales, drive south and then take the ferry to France. He goes to France almost every year, and says that he also hopes to travel to the west of Ireland this year. And Fine Gael TD for Dublin South, Peter Mathews, also hopes to spend some time on the west coast of Ireland. He says that he is looking forward to his summer break. “I enjoy the west coast. We’ve been up in Galway, Mayo, Sligo, and maybe this year, we might go down towards Kerry,” he says. “We hope to enjoy the local countryside and the people and any of the events that might be happening in the areas that we’re going to.”

18 August 2011 BLANCH GAZETTE 5

JUMPSTART Safefood 360 receives €25,000 prize

Dublin 15 firm wins business competition Q LAURA WEBB

A DUBLIN 15 company has been given a major business boost after winning the 2011 JumpStart Competition. Local business, Safefood 360, was announced the winner of the annual competition recently at a special ceremony with judge and Dragon Den star, Gavin Duffy, presenting them with their award. The winners of the competition, organised by The LINC, ITB, received a prize worth €25,000. Safefood 360 is a webbased safety management system. It allows food processing businesses

manage all aspects of food safety in one fully integrated solution. Owners and co-founders Philip Gillen and George Howlett are both experienced in the technology and food industry. The company was launched in April 2011 and the software application has received a very warm welcome from the food industry globally and has already received interest from plants on all five continents. “Clearly the winners, Safefood 360, showed the benefits of start-ups being well supported in an incubator programme like the LINC. The Special Award to Woods Whelans is merited because Brendan

Woods demonstrates all the qualities of an entrepreneur driving a start-up with great potential,” said Duffy. Meanwhile, Lucia O’Riordan, Regional Retail and SME Manager, AIB added: “AIB is delighted to be the lead sponsor of JumpStart for the second year. The standard this year was very high, which made the judges’ job difficult. Safefood have made great strides in developing their business model to-date – this was clearly demonstrated in their presentation and they deserve this recognition. Brendan Woods, of Woods Whelan, shows clear determi-

George Howlett (left) and Philip Gillen, directors of Safefood 360, winners of the LINC JumpStart 2011 Annual Business Competition, pictured with Lucia O’Riordan, Regional Retail and SME manager of AIB

nation in developing his software and I am sure we will hear more about Brendan in the future.” The four companies shortlisted for JumpStart 2011 were Woods Whelan Ltd., 2020feedback. com, Safefood 360 and ZUP Manufacturing and Distribution Ltd. Each company was judged by a panel of wellknown entrepreneurs,

including the Dragon Den’s Gavin Duffy, Lucia O’Riordan, Regional Retail and SME manager, AIB, managing director, Emer Jameson, editor Sorcha Corcoran, Oisin Geoghegan, Fingal County Enterprise Board and Assumpta Harvey, manager,The LINC. Oisin Geoghegan, CEO Fingal County Enter-

prise Board, said there had been a particularly high quality in this year’s entries: “The quality of applications for JumpStart 2011 was very high and it ensured a lively and thorough discussion among the judges.” Jump Start 2011 is proudly supported by AIB and, Fingal County Enterprise Board and Enterprise Ireland.


Sweet time for Society REHEARSALS for the Coolmine Musical Society’s next big stage production are to begin next week during an information and enrolment night for new members. They will be bringing the show, Sweet Charity, to Draiocht this November but, before the big event, practise must make perfect and rehearsals are set to begin this Monday, August 22. Sweet Charity is a show that captures the rhythm, sounds and fun of 60’s New York. Sweet Charity will run from November 15 to 19 in Draiocht. Rehearsals for the show will start on Monday, August 22 with an Information and Enrolment Night in Scoil OIlibhéir, Coolmine at 7.45pm. For further information contact the society’s secretary at coolminems@

6 BLANCH GAZETTE 18 August 2011

POLICING The Gazette learns all about how

Garda horses

Irish lore inspires a modern horse unit Heroes of old provide fitting inspiration for a thoroughly modern Garda support unit Q HIROMI MOONEY

DISBANDED in 1919 due to civil unrest, it would be almost a century before a new mounted unit was established by the Gardai in the grounds of Aras an Uachtarain, in the Phoenix Park. While there had been numerous attempts to reestablish the unit, it would only be when the North Yorkshire disbanded, allowing the Gardai to acquire the horses and equipment, that Garda Commissioner at the time, Pat Byrne, decided to set it up as a national unit in May, 1998. The facilities include a 15-horse box stable, with a yard, tack rooms, a wash room, paddocks and an all-weather training sand arena that is used for public order training. They operate as an operational support unit, alongside the air, dog and water support units. Today, the mounted support unit comprises 14 indigenous Irish Draught geldings, two civilian support staff, 12 Gardai, and


‘Our primary function is to police on the horses, but we do everything else as well’ --------------------------

Sgt Brendan Duffy


Sergeant Brendan Duffy. All of the horses are named after Irish folklore figures – Cumhall, Deaglan, Lir, Connall, Conn, Donagh, Fiachra, Cian, Embarr, Setanta, Fionn Rua, Ruairi, Lorcan and Finn. The horses serve on average up to 13 years in the unit before retiring, with 15-year-old Lir currently the largest horse, measuring 19 hands. Four-year-old Embarr is the newest, having joined the unit in June, and is sponsored by Horse Sport Ireland. And, although Embarr’s the new kid on the block, Sgt Duffy says he has been getting on well since joining the unit.

“He’s still a baby, so we’re not going to rush him. He’s still doing patrols in the park, and kind of getting used to meeting and greeting people,” he says. The mounted unit has a variety of duties, but shares the same duties as their colleagues on the ground. They operate based on both proactive deployment (which is selfdetermined deployment), and reactive deployment (which is deployment when requested). “Our main duties are high-visibility proactive policing, dealing with crowd control at major events, and public order events on occasion,” says Sgt Duffy. “We do open ground and rough terrain searches, on occasion, for missing people, or for evidence, and we tend to do a lot of community engagements as well, with community schools, community group visits and special needs visits.” W hen joining the Force, the horses must be between four and six years

of age, be even-coloured, pass a vetting, be a minimum of 16.3 hands and have a six-week trial with the unit. The trial will determine whether they are temperamental, and are capable of facing various obstacles without panicking. This means that only one in every 10 horses that are trialled is chosen. The in-house training is a slow process that involves gradually introducing the horses to various hazards, and building confidence in dealing with smoke and other obstacles that they may be faced with whilst on duty. “With a young horse, what we start doing is lunging them – circling them around with a long reign – and eventually we start riding them in our all-weather arena, slowly introducing them to walking over tyres, plastic – let them see different things – and drape flags over their heads,” says Sgt Duffy. “Then, we slowly start to introduce them to slow traffic – you know, it’s not

Mounted Gardai officers, Richie Owens Garda horses, Fiachra and Cian. Pictures:

and Lisa Halligan, going out Paddy Barrett

Part of the perfectly-kept setting of the Garda stables

busy in the Park. “If you see that they’re getting fearful of something, you don’t keep pushing them. You back off, and you try again the next day, and you try and encourage them. “Eventually they build up this level of trust – that’s the theory, anyway. “Sometimes, they just don’t get it, but we should have that identified during the six-week trial. “At the end of the day, they’re horses. They’re ‘fight or flight’ animals – that’s their two instincts, and they’re prey animals, so they think that everything bigger than them is going to eat them, and their first reaction is they want to go. “You have to try and

get over their natural instinct to flight, and to try and build up this level of trust, that they start getting accustomed to it and start getting happy with it; that there’s no major threat here. “Then, with the younger horse, we bring them out with older, more established horses, and they draw confidence from the other horse. “Horses work particularly well in public order situations, or with bigger numbers [of people], because they have reassurance – they’re back in the herd. “That’s the way you have to think about it. You have to try and get into their heads and see,” says Sgt Duffy.

The horses are at work every day, whether they are on patrol or crowd control duties. They have an 8am to 4pm shift, a 2pm to 10pm shift, and also a night shift, on Friday and Saturday nights. They also work according to particular events, such as outdoor concerts, when required. “Our primary function is to police on the horses, but we do everything else as well. It’s all hands-on, then. If something needs to be done we’ll do it – it’s not selective. “The main emphasis is that the horses are being worked, that they’re not flighty, that they’re ready for patrol, and that they’re well turned out,” says Sgt Duffy.

18 August 2011 BLANCH GAZETTE 7

are prepared for their

support roles on the Force



member of the team, Fred, leads out

Sgt Brendan Duffy and Donnagh

on patrol with their Some of the Garda horses look out from their immaculate stables




8 BLANCH GAZETTE 18 August 2011


Laurel Lodge Carpenterstown Fr Mick to walk again for Hospice FATHER Mick Cullen, PP St Thomas the Apostle Parish Laurel Lodge, is off on his annual walk to Santiago de Compostella again this year, in aid of St Francis Hospice, Blanchardstown. It will be Fr Mick’s fourth walk on the Camino for the charity – a subject that readers will have seen many times in The Gazette. This year, he is doing the final section – but with a change. This time, he will be approaching Santiago from the south – the Old Portuguese Pilgrim Trail.

Gruelling sun He will be walking 22kms per day for six days, so it is a fairly strenuous undertaking under a Spanish sun, and requires plenty of stamina. The new St Francis Hospice is up and running now, but still needs our continual support to help provide the services that are so important to its patients and their families. Fr Mick is pragmatic; he knows that people are finding it tough in the present economic climate, and says he will be glad of any sponsorship whatsoever. Support To support Fr Mick’s efforts, and to subscribe to a really worthwhile cause – St. Francis Hospice, Blanchardstown – contact the Parish Office Church of St Thomas the Apostle, Laurel Lodge in Dublin 15. Alternatively, contact Fr Dan Joe O’Mahony in the Oratory, Yellow Entrance, Blanchardstown Shopping Centre. You can also telephone the Parish Office at 01 820 8112, or 087 634 4248.

With Jim Lacey Phone: 087-2401308 Email:

Exhibiting fascinating views of a bygone era INGAL South West Heritage Society asked yours truly to gather and select a collection of prints and photographs of the Fingal South West area – which is, essentially, greater Blanchardstown/Castleknock – with a view to exhibiting them for Heritage Week. I have a large collection of pictures and photographs dating back to the time I was researching and writing A Candle In The Window – A History of the Barony of Castleknock. Many of these images appeared in the book, but many didn’t, owing to pressure of space, and some appeared in black and white where full colour would have been better. Some of my favourite pictures have now been selected, cleaned up, where necessary, and



‘The exhibition consists of 62 images, including paintings and photographs. Many of them date back to the early 20th Century, and are the work of anonymous photographers and, perhaps, this exhibition will help to reveal their identities.’ --------------------------------------------------------

enlarged, where possible, and will go on display in the foyer of Blanchardstown Library next Saturday, August 20, until the following Saturday, August 27. The official launch of the exhibition will take place on Monday, August 22 at 6.30pm, when Labour councillor Gerry McGuire, the Mayor of Fingal, will perform the official opening of the exhibition. The exhibition consists

of 62 images, including paintings and photographs – the work of Fr Eugene Kennedy, who greatly assisted me when I was writing my book, which I am now delighted to present in the full colour that these beautiful works of art deserve. There are the magnificent landscape paintings of this area, executed by Gabriel Beranger in the 1760s and 1770s. I also sourced images relating to this area from

An old photograph showcasing an event of historical note in the Dublin 15 area, with an exhibition at Blanchardstown Library highlighting other fascinating events

other collections in the National Gallery and the National Library. Many of the old photographs on display date back to the early 20th Century, and are the work of anonymous photographers and, perhaps, this exhibition will help to reveal their identities. T he Fingal South West Heritage Society,

of which I am a member, gave much support, but so did many local people, such as Norah Comiskey, Sheila Browne, Maureen O’Rourke, Marie Cummins, Fr Eugene Kennedy, Gerry and Loretta Tynan, Celia Burke and Mary Eustace. The National Gallery of Ireland, and The National Library, were

most kind in allowing me to exhibit pictures in their collections. Finally, I want to thank the management and staff of Blanchardstown Library, who have always been unfailingly helpful. So, come along next week and visit the exhibition, and I feel sure that you will enjoy the images on display.

Local Lions appoint Alan Halford as new president HE Castleknock Lions recently elected Alan Halford as their new president. Alan, a member of Castleknock Lions since 1994, when the club was first chartered, previously served as president in 2005. He has held many senior positions in Lions Club Ireland, and is a former Vice-District Governor for Lions clubs in Ireland. The Lions District Cabinet


presented him with the Bert Mason Humanitarian Award in 2010. Alan has selected the Message in a Bottle project as his major project for his term of office. This is an initiative that will be of great benefit to elderly and vulnerable people in the community. The initiative is aimed at providing crucial information to emergency services when

they call to a household in difficulty. It entails placing a particular bottle in a fridge, containing all relevant medical details, such as their medication, allergies etc, relating to the occupants of the household.

Participants Inside the front door, beside the lock, there will be a sign indicating that the household are participants in the scheme

and, on the front door of the fridge, there will be a similar notice. The immediacy of the access to the medical information can save lives – but more of this in September, when the initiative is being launched. Last week, the club sent 10 local children to Birr Activity Centre for an introduction to outdoor pursuits. The club have been doing this for many years, and it has

been a great help to youngsters who might otherwise not get a summer break. This year, for the first time, it included a photographic competition, also funded by the Lions. So, there’s a busy time ahead for Alan and his colleagues in their work for Lions projects that support the community. We will hear more of their work over the next few months.


18 August 2011 BLANCH GAZETTE 9

10 BLANCH GAZETTE 18 August 2011

PICTURES Spot anyone you know here?

Lee Daly

Kaleigh McEntee, Sinead Brady, Janice O’Riley and Saoirse Daly

Cultivating young minds at Bloom EMBERS of staff from the Institute of Technology, Blanchardstown, together with the students from St Philip’s, Mountview, Clonsilla, attended the official opening of the ITB garden. It was one of 27 stunning gardens on display at Bloom, Ireland’s largest gardening, food and family event that took place during the June bank holiday weekend for five days. This is the fifth year of the event and has been the most successful yet. Bloom attracted almost 90,000 visitors to the 70-acre site at the Visitor’s Centre in the Phoenix Park in Dublin. The garden itself was officially launched by the children from the Gardening Club of St Philip’s, Mountview, Dublin 15, who helped to create the inserts for the water feature.

Megan Gallagher


Emma Gilhooly and Sarah Maples

Lauren Riordan

We are adding more and more pictures to our site, log on to have yours delivered direct to your door

18 August 2011 GAZETTE 11

12 GAZETTE 18 August 2011

PEOPLE Singer a Byrne natural to star in the hit musical

A delighted Mary’s up to her eyes in Grease Q LAURA WEBB

MARY Byrne captured our imagination with her amazing singing voice when she starred on the multi-award-winning show, The X-Factor. Now, she is taking centre stage with a different role, as Teen Angel in Grease – The Musical, at the Grand Canal Theatre, a role she hopes she can make her own.

The Dublin motherof-one has seen her life turned upside down – for all the right reasons – after appearing on the hugely popular TV show last year. Since becoming a household name, Mary has gone on to achieve the kind of accomplishments that most singers and artists can only dream of. Speaking to the

Gazette before the show started on August 9, Mary said she was excited about her new venture. “I am excited and quite nervous as well. It is really the first time to do anything like this in my life, but I am absolutely looking forward to it, bigtime!” she said. Mary plays Teen Angel, a role that was played by a man in the original film, but, despite this, she

Despite her lack of experience, Mary byrne told The Gazette she was “delighted” with her role in the hit show

is determined to make it her own. “There was only one other woman who played Teen Angel; a South African woman. “I went over to see the show in Bedford, Leeds, and when I watched the show, I just thought: ‘God, I am not going to be able to do this’. “Then, you realise the person that goes into the show puts a bit of themselves into it, so I am

going to have to put a bit of me into it,” she said. Being a huge fan of the film, Grease, Mary says it’s like a dream come true to be part of the show. “I remember when it first came out; I dragged my nieces to see it so many times! “I also bought the vinyl album, and the video when it came out first, and then I got the DVD, so I have always been a big fan. It is a dream

come true. I am really so honoured to be asked to do this. “The show is just great. It has everything and more that the film has; it works so well on stage. People will just have so much fun – it’s great.” If someone had told Mary five years ago that she would perform in front of millions on TV, sing for Queen Elizabeth II, and support a Neil Diamond concert in Ire-

land’s biggest stadium – the Aviva – Mary said she would have laughed at them, and asked: “What planet are you on?” “I would have never dreamt anything like this would have happened. This is the stuff that fairytales are made of. “You are expecting somewhere, along the line, that the Fairy Godmother will come along and say: ‘Okay, wake up now’. “I am so grateful for the way my life has changed since I went on The X-Factor,” she said. Acting as a future career for Mary is something she might look at. “I said to someone the other day: ‘I would love to do a play or musical’. “I have never had any experience in it. I have no training, but people put challenges up to me, and it is only in the last five years that I am really accepting the challenge and, when you accept the challenge, whether you can do it right or not, it makes you feel alive. “Life is all about trying stuff. We can sit back and be bored out of our heads, or we can get up there, face the challenges and enjoy them – that is what I love doing,” she said. Grease the Musical runs until August 27 at the Grand Canal Theatre. For further information, see Tickets can be purchased through Ticketmaster.

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14 GAZETTE 18 August 2011


Rap regency roll Q ROB HEIGH

Diamonds up: Kanye West and Jay-Z

COLLABOR ATIONS are the current cornerstone of most modern music, whether it be a “featuring” credit or a guest appearance from either a legend or someone completely unknown who the lead artist wants to propel into the spotlight. Seldom is it the case that legends of a genre come together to create an entire project — although this is the month that Superheavy, which features the stellar talents of Mick Jagger, Joss Stone, Dave Stewart and son of Bob, Damian Marley, release the first music from their association — but

that is exactly what rap superstars Jay-Z and Kanye West have done on their new release. Finally, eight months after HAM, the first fruit of the collaboration that would come to be known as The Throne, comes the gold-plated, beat-encrusted Watch The Throne. With Jay and Kanye insisting that this would be “no ring-in”, where most collaborations see artists recording in opposite sides of a country, or even the planet, and their product being married together in a studio in another time zone, both these colossus of the rap game were in the same studio at the same time — something

that makes it a stronger, more coherent, album from start to finish. And, to start at the beginning of the beginning, when Kanye dropped the tempo on the Jackson 5’s I Want You Back to create the beat under Izzo (HOVA), a track that began to push Jay-Z into legend status, a marriage of minds was born. Kanye provided production duties to some of the best tracks on The Blueprint, the album that defined, and still defines, Jay-Z’s career, and Hov returning the compliment later on that record, that “Kanyeeze you did it again, you a genius!”.

In return, Jay provided ve r s e s a n d s u p p o r t throughout West’s still immense debut album, The College Dropout, these two giants of music coming together to create something more monolithic than their individual careers have delivered to date was inevitable. Both Jay and Kanye are undoubtedly at the pinnacle of their careers; it would be debatable whether they were both at the top of their games. Jay’s Blueprint 3 featured some tracks that define him as a recording artist in the wider cultural horizon (Empire State of Mind, Run This Town) it was a sprawling and,

18 August 2011 GAZETTE 15



out regal new release at times, overinflated record. Meanwhile, Kanye comes into this project on the back of one of the best records of the last decade, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, that saw his imagination as an artist and his production skills rise above any negative criticism thrown at him over recent years (“Even if it goes through Taylor Swift, tell her this”) Watch The Throne, therefore, is an act of alchemy, the melting of minds and styles and skills to create something more, but the same things said about the previous recordings by the pair ring true once again, still present

in the mix. It is an epically wellproduced record, taking some inspired samples (Otis Redding, Nina Simone, and the inevitable James Brown) and beats to create another widescreen collage. It’s a record so knowing as to allow Kanye to drop in a Will Ferrell quote (“It doesn’t actually mean anything, it’s provocative”) to lighten the tone with a selfdeprecating moment, something Mr West would not previously be noted for. But under the surface is the feeling that Kanye is the one pushing the envelope, while Jay only sporadically provides the quality of

rhymes and verses that his long-time fans know he is capable of. But when the fates conspire and the light hits the throne right, there are some magnificent moments here, and you remember why every release by the two kings remain an occasion deserving of a public holiday. There are more ideas than only one record can contain, and that’s maybe why it feels as though there are better things to come. And the ongoing sense that when Jay-Z and Kanye We s t wo r k t o g e t h er, something really inspired and historic will appear. Long may they reign.

The opulent cover of Watch the Throne, by Italian designer Riccardo Tisci

Call our NEWS TEAM on 60 10 240 or email

16 GAZETTE 18 August 2011


SNAPSHOT The stories of the day

Disappointed with attitude of some dog owners DEAR EDITOR,

I HAVE had two experiences recently, which made my regular Sunday walk particularly unpleasant, a walk on which one, or both, of my granddaughters frequently accompany me. The first experience took place a few weeks ago when I chose to walk to the East Pier in Dun Laoghaire to enjoy the views of the north city and coastline. On approaching the pier, a sign, which is clearly displayed and mounted on the wall, informs people walking their dogs that they must keep their animals on a lead at all times. They are also advised to clean up after their pets or risk a fine, and possible prosecution, if they fail to do so. Despite this, dog owners repeatedly and blatantly ignore this law and, as a result, the pier has become an unpleasant place to walk. I believe this selfish disregard of the law by many dog owners, not all – I hasten to add – should be addressed by the authorities. In all the times I have walked on either of the piers, which is usually once a week, I have never once seen a warden or port official patrol the area. The second experience I refer to is when I went walking recently through Killiney Hill Park, where the same problem exists. An even

higher number of dog owners let their pets loose here, where fouling on the paths and grass areas is very much in evidence, despite the fact that children run, play and roll in the grass. Again, despite visiting the park frequently, I have never seen a park warden on patrol. The recent protests by Dogs Unleashed Group in Dun Laoghaire show how many dog owners think their animals should be treated like humans. Expecting them to be allowed run free in public seems to be acceptable to them, despite the fact it is against the law, outside the safe confines of the owner’s property. Most people like animals, to some degree, but a great many are nervous of dogs and should not be made to feel frightened or uncomfortable by such animals running loose in our parklands, beaches, open spaces or any public place. I do agree that many more of the larger parks should follow the excellent example of Marley Park and Shanganagh Park and introduce dog pens. I have a lovely Labrador and use the dog pen in Marley Park and find it very successful. Also, the park is very well maintained, with regular patrols and enjoys a strict adherence to park laws, making it a pleasure to visit. Name and Address with the Editor

GazetteContacts Block 3A, Mill Bank Business Park, Lucan Tel: 01 6010240 Fax: 01 6010251 Managing Director: Liam Holland email:

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Advertising Sales: 01 6010240 email: Gazette Group Newspapers Ltd. Terms and Conditions for acceptance of advertisements Reserve the right to omit or suspend or alter any advertisement(s) in any of its publications. We also decline any responsibility in the event of one or more of a series of advertisements being omitted for any reason whatever, nor do we accept liability for any loss or damage caused by an error or inaccuracy in the printing of any advertisement. If your advertisement appears incorrectly, contact the Advertising Department immediately, as responsibility cannot be accepted for more than one week’s incorrect insertion. Responsibility cannot be accepted if the complaint is made more than two weeks after insertion. If one places an advertisement for more than one week and then cancels it after the first week, no refund or credit will be given for weeks cancelled. The advertiser undertakes to indemnify the Proprietors against any liability for any civil action arising out of the publication of the advertisement or any other matter printed or published in the Blanchardstown Gazette, Castleknock Gazette, Clondalkin Gazette, Dundrum Gazette, Dun Laoghaire Gazette, Lucan Gazette, Malahide Gazette and Swords Gazette. The placing of an order or contract will be deemed an acceptance of these conditions.

Time for a spot of tea at Browns Bar and Cafe Models Teo Sutra and Angelica Salomao were pictured indulging in Afternoon Tea with a stylish twist as Carton House, one of Ireland’s most luxurious hotels, officially opened the doors of the most fashionable café in the heart of Dublin – Browns Bar & Cafe by Carton House, which is housed within the iconic department store

A fabulous new cafe for Brown Thomas BROWNS Bar & Cafe by Carton House will be housed on the lower ground level of the Brown Thomas flagship store on Grafton Street. Cathal Kavanagh, executive chef and creative mind in the kitchen at Carton House, has chosen a selection of some of the most popular and mouth-watering dishes from Carton House for the new menu, along with a wide range of coffees created by the Carton House barista. The cafe will also sell products from the gourmet Carton House food range such as dressings, sauces and seasonal offerings, including Christmas and Valentine’s Day products. The indulgent rest stop will offer visitors a selection of gourmet sandwiches, including Smoked Salmon Croque Monsieur, Rare Roast Irish Beef, Pear and Blue Cheese; a selection of salads, including Carton Caesar Salad and Seasonal Mixed Salad; Anti Pasti and Afternoon Tea by Carton House, including mini scones, finger sandwiches, fruit cake and pastries with clotted cream, a hot beverage of your choice and a glass of chilled champagne for €14.90 per person

DIARY It’sTreasure Island, but not as you know it FOR five fun-filled days from August 22 to August 26, Ballet Ireland’s Annual Summer School will be running workshops on art, mime and dance. This will lead to the main event on Friday, August 26, with their take on Robert Louis Stephenson’s classic, aptly renamed Treasure Island, The Ballet! The performance takes place at the Pavilion Theatre in Dun Laoghaire at 4 pm. The ballet will be a culmination of the efforts put in by two separate workshops, one for Dance and Art and the other for Arts and Craft, which will be running from Monday to Thursday of that week. Ballet Ireland’s Annual Summer School is now into its 11th year and is open to all ages and competency levels. The company mounts two major new productions a year. For more information on the workshop and performance, con-

tact the box office on 01-2312929 or visit

Let’s hear it for our Rose DUBLIN is rooting for its very own Rose to do well in this year’s Rose of Tralee festival this weekend. Clondalkin native, Siobheal Nic Eochaidh, was picked from hundreds to represent Dublin in the world-famous festival that is watched by nearly every household in Ireland every year, whether they like to admit it or not. Her self-taught dance moves, and her bubbly personality bowled over the judges at the Dublin Regional finals recently and it is hoped that she can win over the festival judges again this weekend. The festival begins this Friday, where Siobheal will take centre stage with 31 other international Roses from around the world in front of an audience of thousands. Siobheal will be joined by Darragh McGrath, who was deemed the 2011 Dublin Escort of Year. Tune into RTE 1 on Monday, August 22 and Tuesday, August 23 for a live broadcast from the Festival Dome at 8pm and support our own Dublin Rose – Come on Siobheal!

18 August 2011 GAZETTE 17


Brought to you by Miriam Kerins of the DSPCA


Pets can pile on the pounds, but what may be the cause? You! OULD it surprise you to know that approximately 53% of cats, and 55% of dogs, are overweight? Well, they are, according to the findings at the fourth annual Association for Pet Obesity Prevention (APOP) which, in my opinion, clearly suggests we’re placing our pets at a serious risk of dying early. So, I hear you ask: “What constitutes an overweight animal?” Overweight animals, or pet obesity, sees an excess of body fat that’s enough to impair the health, welfare and lifestyle of the animal. To put it simply – and setting all lame excuses aside – your pet is taking in more calories than he requires, and any excess weight in an otherwise healthy animal is very likely to be due to overeating. When experts speak about humans being obese, they usually define it as being 20-25% above ideal body weight. However, in animals, the degree of obesity that impairs health, welfare and quality of life has not been fully defined, and will vary from one individual animal to another, but it’s more likely to be similar to that seen in people. Still, it must be stressed that obesity is a serious health issue in pets for several reasons:



‘Your pet is taking in more calories than he requires, and excess weight in an otherwise healthy animal is very likely to be due to overeating’ --------------------------

• It causes suffering, and can be disabling for the animal. • It can affect an animal for a long period of its life. • It’s preventable. What are the causes of obesity?

The main reason is the type of food being fed to the animal. This is something that’s controlled by you – the owner. If your dog eats too much and doesn’t exercise enough, he can become obese. Let me explain a typical scenario. A lovely pet parent visits the clinic, and the dog is clearly overweight, so I very politely and respectfully suggest that, err, perhaps Fido could do with losing a few pounds. Here are just some of the replies... “Ah, but you don’t understand – he barks all night if I don’t give him his choccie biccies.”

No, he barks all night because he’s copped on

that the more noise he makes, the more he gets attention. You give in, and reward him with a biscuit. You’re training a beggar! “But he never eats a thing, and I worry about him, so I give him some of my own dinner.”

He does eat; he’s just a grazer who goes back and forth to his food to nibble during the day. That’s normal. However, when the humans eat, they feed him from the table, which fills him up, leaving no room for his dog food. This means his total calorie intake is excessive, and now he’s a roly-poly! What are some of the health risks of obesity?

• Diabetes mellitus, or sugar diabetes. • Complaints in joints and bones. • Heart disease. • Problems with breathing. • Heat intolerance. • Surgical risk. • Risk giving birth. • Constipation. • Cancer. The link between obesity and certain forms of cancer is unknown. There have been studies suggesting that obese dogs tend to have an increased risk of developing certain types of cancers. A recent study has found that dogs who are obese at one-year-old are at a greater risk of developing mammary tumours.

How do you tell if your animal is obese?

Here are just a few telltale signs: • Excessive panting, particularly in hot weather. • Lagging behind during walks. • Sluggish behaviour. • Reluctance to exercise, resulting in fewer calories being used up, thus being stored as fat. • No visible waist. When viewed from above, your pet should have slight curves; as in a gentle dip after the ribs, turning to a gradual slope to the hips. If he hasn’t these curves, perhaps he’s overweight. Steps in avoiding obesity:

• Only offer food recommended by your vet. • Offer no snacks/ scraps. • Measure food intake carefully. • Increase exercise; this is easier for dogs than cats. Put your cat’s food upstairs, thus encouraging her to walk up to get it; play with her more, and rotate her toys. • Ensure everyone who plays a part in your pet’s life understands how important his health is. Remember, these are only guidelines, and there are some diseases that can cause obesity in your pet – so, if in doubt, check with your vet. For more information log onto or email me at

Miriam warns that, in many cases, Fido’s obesity can be blamed on one thing – the owner, who may be failing their pet’s care in a number of areas, from diet to exercise

18 GAZETTE 18 August 2011


LIN Ford Dealers, Ashley Ford, North Circular Road and Finglas Ford have both claimed prestigious Ford of Europe Chairman’s Awards. Ashley picked up the award for its outstanding customer service last year whilst Finglas Ford collected their award for parts sales and aftersales performance. The Ford of Europe Chairman’s Award programme is based on direct feedback from customers who have purchased a vehicle from the dealership and is in recognition of a dealer’s performance in meeting those customers’ expectations. Extensive research has been carried out by Ford in assessing these expectations and providing guidelines to dealers to satisfy them.

Seat’s new Alhambra MPV is a big family car with a similar design and almost identical fittings to the Volkswagen Sharan. The entry price for the seven-seat version is more competitive at €38,130 before delivery charges

New Seat Alhambra arrives Seat has upgraded its range with the new Alhambra model, which MICHAEL MORONEY took for a drive EAT is back in strength with new model designs that aim to boost the company’s image. Seat is part of the Volkswagen group so naturally we can expect lots of Volkswagen bits and performance from the new Seat range. And that’s just what I found with the new Seat Alhambra that I’ve been driving. This is designed as a family MPV with seven seats and lots of comfort. The car has all of the VW bits under the skin in terms of things mechanical, while the Seat badge means that the price is more competitive. Look closely and you’ll find that the body styling is also similar, more so than with the previous Alhambra models. Seat provided me with the 2.0-litre, turbo-diesel, entry-level Reference


SPECS: SEAT ALHAMBRA Top speed: 194 km/hr 0 – 100km/hr: 10.9 secs Economy: 17.8 km/litre (5.6 l/100km) CO2 emissions: 146g/ km Road Tax Band: C (€302) Euro NCAP Rating: 5-Star (2010) Warranty: 2 years Entry Price: €38,130

version for my test drive. While it sports the Seat badge front and rear, in every other sense it’s almost the identical in terms of dimensions to the related Volkswagen Sharan. The test car came with seven-seat capacity. The third row of rear seats on the test car folded easily out of use to give a big boot, five-seat car if needed. Seat also offers a

slightly cheaper five-seat version. For the test car, the rear row of two seats was easy to use. I found that the seats folded into action in seconds and with ease. This rear space is adequate for children, not adults, while there is great room in the middle row for your bigger passengers. When the third row of seats is tucked away, the boot is very sizeable. You can pack loads in there, and the floor is level with the boot rim. The new Alhambra is powered by a 2.0-litre Volkswagen turbo-diesel engine. This engine has some eco features to allow it to compete in fuel economy with the Volkswagen Sharan, which has similar Blue Motion technology. These features include stop-start systems, gear selection indicator and

low-rolling resistance tyres. In power terms, this 2.0-litre turbo-diesel engine produces 140bhp and 320Nm of torque. That’s a perfect match for the performance of the Volkswagen Sharan. It’s also a match for Ford’s Galaxy when fitted with a similar size engine. The Sharan is marginally more economical than the Seat; you’ll get an extra kilometre for your litre of diesel, while the Galaxy is, economy, similar to the Alhambra. All three use six-speed gearboxes which, on the Alhambra, was very smooth to use. I found the Alhambra an easy car to drive as I quickly got used to the electronic handbrake and stop-start system. That economy performance was almost matched with my driving style, so I

came close to the official figure of 17.8 km/litre (5.6 l/100km). I covered over 900km on the test drive and there was enough fuel to bring that nearer to 1,000km before a re-fill of the 70-litre fuel tank. The safety fittings are a match for the competition with seven airbags, iso-fix seating in the rear and a recent Euro NCAP crash test rating of five-stars. The car comes with a Volkswagen-type car computer system that’s easy to use and understand. The radio is also clearer than that fitted to other Seat models, which is a welcome change. Because of the brand relationships you just have to compare the Alhambra to the Volkswagen Sharan because it simply offers more value. Volkswagen re-sale prices are still holding up

higher than those of Seat and that alone may be a factor that’s putting some buyers off the Seat brand. The features and the equipment levels on the new Alhambra model will change that a little. At €38,130 before delivery charges, the entry price for the Alhambra is nearly €4,000 cheaper than the Volkswagen Sharan and almost €4,500 cheaper than the equivalent Ford Galaxy, with equal driving performance and some additional features. On the figures, the Seat deal may well be more competitive than either Volkswagen’s or Ford’s where you pay that bit more for the brand image. That means that you’ve a little more room for a lower valuation when the trade-in day looms in the future. In the meantime you’ll be impressed with what’s on offer from Seat.

Toyota develops its own crash avoidance technology CRASH avoidance technology is nothing new. Car manufacturers, such as Mercedes-Benz and Volvo, have already implemented collision-avoidance systems on select vehicles, such as the system used on the new Volvo XC60. Toyota is the latest company to

announce a new offering along these lines. Unlike the others, Toyota is developing technology that will both slow the car and steer it away from an impact with another vehicle or pedestrian. Toyota’s system claims to use both cameras and sensitive “millimetre-wave”

radar to detect objects in the vehicle’s path. It then calculates the amount of both braking and steering necessary to avoid a collision. If steering away from a pending crash is an option, the system takes control of the vehicle’s steering and executes an avoidance manoeuvre.

Toyota has defined an idealised goal of zero injuries and zero fatalities. Other safety systems under development at Toyota include a pop-up hood, and shaded high-beams, which reduce glare from high-beam lights for oncoming traffic.

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GazetteMOTORS MOTORS RoadSigns Road Signs New Honda CR-V – a first look HONDA has the first photographs of the new CR-V Concept, providing the first official glimpse of styling direction. The new, fourth-generation CR-V is set to go on sale in the United States by the end of 2011, and in Europe in autumn 2012. The new CR-V Concept embraces a new styling direction. Compared to the previous generation, the concept-model Honda claims that the new model takes on a more aggressive stance, with deeper sculpting of the body lines and a bolder front fascia. The lower front bumper wraps smartly upward to convey SUV capability. The overall, lower front-bumper design now integrates more smoothly into the fascia for improved aerodynamics. The CR-V’s vertical tail lights remain for the next model with a more threedimensional style that wraps further into the design of the vehicle. Honda claims that the new CR-V will be equipped with more efficient engines compared to the current model. The new CR-V is expected to deliver a significant improvement in fuel economy. The CR-V is one of the top-selling SUVs, sold in more than 160 countries throughout Europe, Asia, North America, South America and Africa.

The new Honda CR-V Concept will be on first public display in California next month and will be on sale in Ireland during 2012

OPEL IS NOT FOR SALE, SAYS GM CHIEF: GENERAL MOTORS CEO, Daniel Akerson, has weighed in strongly to say that Opel, its European business, is not for sale. Speculation about Opel’s future was mooted back in June by German media as they repor ted that Opel could be sold and that possible buyers included Chinese automakers or Volkswagen. In 2009, GM dropped plans to sell Opel to the Canadian Magna Interna-

tional after months of negotiations. GM stopped the sale of its Opel brand in 2009, and it has been rumoured that some GM management had concerns Russian car companies would gain access to Opel’s technology and patents. Since then GM has launched a restructuring Opel, which lost $1.6 billion last year and brought it back on track. GM Europe posted a profit in the first quarter and the company claims that Opel had gained market share this year.

The new-look 2012 Toyota Hilux will go on sale in Ireland towards the end of the year

Hilux builds strength with new design OYOTA’S “indestructible” Hilux has been given a new look and some additional hi-tech features for 2012. The pick-up has been given a re-style from the A-pillar forwards, with a new bonnet, radiator grille, headlamps and bumper, plus new wheel designs and new side bars and steps for the top-of-the-range Hilux models. The interior has been given a new look, too, with new upper dash-


board design and horizontal instrument cluster that emphasise the breadth and roominess of the cabin. The revised lay-out incorporates the new Toyota Touch multimedia unit with a full colour 6.1-inch touchscreen. The Touch package, fitted as standard to the high-end models, also includes Bluetooth and a USB port for connecting digital music players. The quality feel of the cabin has been improved with new, uniform dark

finishes and new chrome surround for the instrument binnacle on the Invincible. The 2012 Hilux carries forward its current engines, the 142bhp 2.5-D-4D and 169bhp 3.0-D-4D units, but these now comply with the Euro 5 light commercial vehicle emissions standards ahead of their introduction at the beginning of next year, thanks to the adoption of a diesel particulate filter (DPF). With these engine changes the CO2 emis-

sions for the 2.5 D-4D (Double Cab) have been cut by more than 10% to 194g/km, becoming best in class, and combined fuel consumption has also improved by more than 10% to 13.7km/litre (38.7mpg). The emissions figure for the 3.0-litre D-4D Double Cab automatic has fallen to 227g/km and the manual to 203g/ km. Combined fuel consumption figures are improved from 31.7 to 32.8mpg and 34.0 to 36.7mpg respectively.

The standard fivespeed manual transmission and the optional five-speed automatic for the 3.0-litre D-4D engine, exclusive to the Invincible, are also retained. From launch, Hilux will be available with a comprehensive choice of accessory packs to tailor the vehicle to suit the needs of both business users and those owners who need to use Hilux for more everyday driving duties, or want to give their vehicle an extra dash of style.

Fords moves to digital as CD sales drop CASSETTE tapes that once revolutionised in-car audio entertainment were driven out of the dashboard by the compact disc revolution. Now in-car CD players are poised to follow a similar path as Ford and other car companies respond to customer demand for all-digital systems with increased connectivity. With the new Ford Focus, Ford has scrapped once-popular multi-disc CD changers, while a USB connection and Bluetooth are standard equipment in the UK – both of which cater to the increasing popularity of iPods

and other digital music players. Music industry studies show that sales of CD albums have fallen by more than 35% between 2006 and 2010, while the number of digital album sales increased more than seven-fold. As music-lovers relocate their CD catalogues to digital storage and move to digital download purchasing of music, Ford plans a targeted move towards “all-digital” in-car entertainment. Across Europe, Ford currently offers USB and Bluetooth audio connectivity, as well as auxiliary inputs for MP3 devices, to sup-

plement the existing CD player. But as CD usage becomes less prevalent, these digital devices will become the norm. “Ford will obviously continue to offer CD players while there is demand,” said Ralf Brosig, multimedia manager, Ford of Europe. “However, over time we expect customer preferences will lead us quickly into an all-digital approach to in-car audio entertainment.” Ford will take a big step forward with the arrival of the advanced SYNC with MyFord Touch system in Europe, arriving

first in the Ford Focus. The system will cater directly to the demands of Ford’s tech-savvy customers, offering a sophisticated multimedia infotainment hub providing connectivity options, including multiple USB inputs, SD card ports, RCA inputs and Bluetooth connectivity. The system also will act as a password-protected wireless hotspot for up to five devices, providing connectivity through USB or mobile phone broadband modems. Ford expects two million SYNC equipped vehicles to be on the road by 2015.

18 August 2011 GAZETTE 21

GazetteBUSINESS BUSINESS Harvey Norman takes in almost €4.5bn HARVEY Norman has revealed that worldwide sales from its Australian, New Zealand, Slovenian, Irish and Northern Irish businesses totalled a whopping €4.45 billion for the 12 months to June 30, 2011. The company said that, when compared to sales for the same period in 2009, this was an increase of 1.7 per cent. The Republic of Ireland operation managed to stabilise sales with only a slight decrease of 0.2 per cent for the same period, while sales in Northern Ireland increased by

3.2 per cent. Both Irish divisions grew sales for the second half against last year, with the Republic of Ireland operation growing sales in quarter three by 1.9 per cent and quarter four by 4.6 per cent. “It was really a year of two halves for us, with sales flat before Christmas, and then some encouraging growth in the six months to June,” said Blaine Callard, chief executive of the Irish operation. “Consumer sentiment continues to be very weak, and

shows no signs of recovering soon. “Big ticket retail sales in furniture and electronics have been hit the hardest, so it’s about getting a bigger slice of a smaller pie. “We will continue to improve our operation, investing in our people, our service and our stores. “The strategy for us is to focus on growing marketshare. Revenue growth in the second half is very positive for us against such a difficult economic backdrop,” he added.

ANSWERS TO YOUR PERSONAL FINANCE QUESTIONS QUALIFYING FOR MORTAGE TAX RELIEF Q – How do I qualify for mortgage interest relief and how are the rates of payment calculated ? Jean - Greystones On the mend: Harvey Norman has stabilised its Irish interests

A – When you receive your final mortgage documents, your monthly repayment will be the first item to catch your eye. Generally Tax Relief at Source (TRS) is


deducted automatically from this payment and your direct debit to your current account is the NET mortgage repayment after tax relief. If you bought your property after 1st

New look for Argos to mark 15 years MIMI MURRAY

ARGOS has launched 21 revamped stores throughout Ireland this month as part of a €4 million refurbishment and development project. The new layout and format was unveiled on August 6 in 21 stores across the country. Celebrating 15 years in Ireland and securing more than 1,300 jobs, the refurbishment of the stores comes at an exciting time for Argos as they enjoy the 15-year milestone, while continuously updating their services, stores and catalogue to ensure customers have a satisfying shopping experience. Speaking about the launch, Alison Evans, Argos Regional General Manager for Ireland, said: “This extensive refurbishment shows that Argos is

committed to developing and improving its stores in Ireland. “We are dedicated to continuing our investment in Ireland, and increasing the number of stores across the country, in order to give our customers more choice, value and convenience when shopping.” The refurbished stores include a new format with updated jewellery and watch galleries, allowing customers to try on items before purchasing. New dedicated technology display areas showcasing cameras, video cameras, plasma TVs, mobile phones and satellite navigation systems will also give customers a chance to view and handle technology products before purchasing. Each store has benefit-

January 2004 and up to 31st December 2011, you are entitled to TRS on mortgage interest paid up to €10,000 per annum for single people, and €20,000 for married couples. By 1st January 2013, all mortgage relief will be withdrawn. Currently there are three rates up to 2017 applicable; first two years – 25% tax relief, second three years – 22.5%, and Last two years – 20% To give you an example, a mortgage of €200,000 at an interest rate of 3.85% will create a € 7,700 per annum interest bill.


‘If you bought your property after 1st January 2004 and up to 31st December 2011, you are entitled to TRS on mortgage interest paid up to €10,000 per annum for single people, and €20,000 for married couples. By 1st January, 2013, all mortgage relief will be withdraw’ ---------------------------------------------------For the first two years, whether single or married, because it is under both threshModels Pippa O’Connor and Rosanna Davison unveil the newly-designed Argos

olds, the relief at 25% will amount to €1,925

store in St Stephen’s Green as part of the company’s €4 million revamp

per annum or €160.42 monthly. In the third to fifth years, because the tax

ed from new lighting and eye-catching displays, giving them a more contemporary look. New state-of-the-art touchscreen browsers have been installed in each store, enabling customers to browse and search easily for items to buy. All of the stores have new quick pay kiosks, where customers have the option to pay for their items electronically rath-

er than queuing up for a cashier. “Our new-look stores have a fresher, more contemporary feel, which we hope our customers will enjoy, and the new facilities such as the computer systems and payment kiosks, will make their shopping experience much easier and more convenient,” Evans said. To celebrate Argos being in Ireland for 15

years, every month from August 2011 through to January 2012, Argos is giving Irish consumers the opportunity to win €1,500 of Argos vouchers to spend on whatever they want. The competition went live at midnight on July 30 and to enter all you have to do is go online at . For more information on Argos, please visit

relief has dropped to 22.5%, the monthly relief will be €144.37 – €16.05 less than the first two years. Be very careful also about claiming TRS if you in fact have rented out your property – this is a no-no and you must advise Revenue using a TRS 4 form. Contact them at 1890 46 36 26 or trsadmin@ for all enquiries. Contact John with your money questions at or visit his website at John Lowe, Fellow of the Institute of Bankers, is founder and managing director of Money Doctor

22 GAZETTE 18 August 2011

GazetteTTRAVEL FastTravel

Limerick’s hidden treasures and lovely people make it a cool trip MIMI MURRAY

60th anniversary of The Quiet Man honoured at Ashford Castle IN 1951, John Ford’s greatest movie; The Quiet Man starring John Wayne and Irish-born actress Maureen O’Hara, was made in the beautiful landscape of the west of Ireland. John Ford’s award-winning comedy has been both reviled and celebrated for its larger-than-life portrayal of Ireland. The Quiet Man outdoor scenes were shot in various locations in counties Galway and Mayo - mainly around the scenic Maam Valley on the shores of Lough Corrib, Ashford Castle and the nearby village of Cong. To celebrate the 60th anniversary of the making of the movie, the five-star Ashford Castle Hotel is offering two unique and luxurious Quiet Man packages, which will be available until September 30, 2011. Package one consists of two nights accommodation in a Corrib View room; full Irish breakfast for two people each morning; fivecourse dinner for two people in the George V on one evening; one-hour tour by Gerry Collins visiting five local sites that were featured in the film in the village of Cong; entry into the Quiet Man Museum in the village of Cong. It also includes dressing up in the costumes in the Museum and allowing pictures to be taken. This package costs €415 per person. Package two consists of two nights accommodation in a Corrib View room; full Irish breakfast for two people each morning; fivecourse dinner for two people in the George V on one evening; half-day tour visiting most of the locations used in the film capturing the splendour of Connemara, Galway and Mayo. This costs €500 per person. For reservations contact 094 954 6003/

LIMERICK, bless it, gets a bad rap. However, when asked to sample the county recently I jumped at the chance, having never been and being easily accessible from Dublin, we headed off on a Friday evening. We were eager to sample both a country and city location and decided to stay in the Mustard Seed at Echo Lodge which is just past the quaint village of Adare. The place is a charming old country house painted in deep, rich colours and is kitted out with comfy antique furniture. The staff couldn’t be friendlier and on arrival the owner, Dan, gave us a warm welcome. We ate in the charming dining room that evening, which was quite busy. Our French waiter was attentive and we thoroughly enjoyed the fresh country kitchen cuisine, much of it coming from the garden that morning. The next day, after a comfortable night’s sleep, I was treated to a Thai massage. Having been to Thailand recently I know only too well the merits of this type of massage if done right, and this one didn’t disappoint. I was left feeling relaxed and rejuvenated as we set off for Limerick city.

No. 1 Per y Square was launched two and a half years ago and is in a quiet area of Limerick beside the People’s Park. A stylish old Georgian building, it houses a restaurant, an underground spa, a bar and is all very compact. After a quick drink we headed out towards O’Connell St and our destination that night, the Corn Store. This was a real find, with some delicious seafood on the menu. After dinner we were happy to discover there was a live jazz band set up to play for the rest of the evening. We fell in with a fun crowd who took us on a tour of some of Limerick’s choice venues, including The Sin Bin, where we danced the night away to some suspect 90’s music.

T he following day the underground spa allowed us to rejuvenate and our weary bones and feet that had taken a battering the night before got some much needed pampering. Next it was off to picturesque Adare, which really is worth a look. It has some stunning boutiques offering topend designer labels. Many are perfect for bridal and mother-of the-bride outfits. We spied a wedding about to take place at the stunning local church and waited around to see the bride step from her vintage car and wave at the gathering crowds. After gorging on all things bridal we headed back to the city for dinner. The restaurant staff were very well versed in Brasserie One and

Onglet steak were interesting, as was the pork belly. There was one fish dish but more could be added and, having dined on hake the night before, I didn’t want to go for the same again. The Milk Market is worth a look on Saturday and Sunday mornings and all the locals gather to catch up over coffee and peruse the many stalls on offer. So, back to that bad rap: Limerick is a cool city with plenty of interesting people and is definitely worth a look.

Above: A bedroom in No. 1


‘No. 1 Pery Square was launched two and a half years ago and is in a quiet area of Limerick beside the People’s Park. A stylish old Georgian building, it houses a restaurant, an underground spa, a bar and is all very compact ’ -------------------------------------------------------------------------------One thing I will say our friendly waiter recabout Limerick – eve- ommended a bottle of ryone is exceptionally Slovenian wine, which friendly and helpful, was perfect on a sunny and, at one point when summer’s day. The menu was slightwe appeared a little lost, a very nice young ly wintry for the time of lady offered us direc- year but was tasty nonetions without us having theless. Beef cheek and to ask.

Above and below; images from Echo Lodge

18 August 2011 BLANCH GAZETTE 23

Edited by Mimi Murray

BeachTravel Beaches by day and nightlife provide fun and sun in equal measure IT HAS great beaches by day and great action by night. Tenerife’s Playa de las Americas is rightly famed as an all-round attraction for holidaymakers seeking sun and fun in equal measure. For those itching to get away this month, Direct Holidays has online offers from just €469. All-inclusive packages, with meals, drinks and entertainment, included in the price, are flavour of the season this year, and the 3-star Playa Olid in Costa Adeje, with its multiple swimming pools and bars, is a real bargain at just €569 per person for seven nights departing Dublin on August 20. Playa Fanabe, close to the exclusive Playa del Duque, offers a relaxing stay but with a great choice of restaurants and nightclubs. Alongside its great location, the 4-star Sunwing Resort Fanabe features exciting shows several nights a week. Departing August 20, Direct Holidays are offering seven nights at the resort for just €469 per person on a selfcatering basis. All prices are based on two sharing.

Pery square, Below, right: The hotel’s underground spa

The perfect sun getaway awaits in Tenerife

Packages or flight-only holiday deals this month along Bulgaria’s stunning coastline BULGARIA’S Sunny Beach resort on the stunning Black Sea is famous for its beautiful beaches, sunny climate and safe, warm sea. Concorde Travel are currently offering package holidays or flight only deals at great prices. Concorde Travel Self Catering Packages at the 3-star Golden Dreams Apartments start from €385 based on six sharing a two-bedroom apartment; €399 based on four sharing a one-bedroom apartment and €494 based on two sharing a studio apartment. Hotel prices start from €564 in the 3-star Grand Hotel Sunny Beach on a B and B basis. Packages include return flights, transfers, seven nights accommodation, rep services and all taxes and charges. Flights operate every Monday from Dublin and Cork. Visit for more details.

Cyprus calling for sun and relaxation ESCAPE to the stunning birthplace of Aphrodite, the ancient goddess of love this August. Concorde Travel has the ultimate romantic escape to Paphos in Cyprus. The beautiful UNESCO World Heritage Site combines historical sites with the warmth of the Mediterranean Sea where relaxing and sunbathing will be an unforgettable experience. Stay at the 4-star Hotel Avanti on a B and B basis from only €699pp, which has been reduced from €974pp. Package includes direct flights from Dublin to Larnaca, return transfers to the Hotel, rep assistance and seven nights accommodation on a BB basis, based on two sharing. Visit for more details.

24 BLANCH GAZETTE 18 August 2011


GoingOUT GoingOUT PAVILION THEATRE 01 231 2929 Treasure Island BALLET Ireland’s annual summer school sets sail for the Pavilion Theatre with a twist on the classic tale of Treasure Island, which will be presented by the participants of the summer school. Four highly-skilled dancers from Ballet Ireland’s core company will lead the participants, preparing and training everyone for the grand finale. Running from Monday, August 22 to Friday, August 26, the week-long course costs €90. For full details, see

THE HELIX 01 700 7000 Panto Camp A WEEK-long course for children aged from 6 to 13 will give children a wonderful experience to remember, as they all have the chance to work with the production team to participate in the Christmas panto production of Aladdin, which will run during the Christmas period. With a choice of two week-long panto camps to take part in, there’s something for all children to enjoy. Running from 10 am to 2.30pm daily, the course costs €120. For full details, see

Summer Films AS PART of its summer season of family films, The Helix has a number of favourites for all to enjoy. Running at 2pm, and priced €6, €4 conc, or €20 season ticket (phone booking only), James and the Giant Peach plays on Saturday, August 20; Matilda on Wednesday, August 24; Fantastic Mr Fox on Saturday, August 27; and Willy Wonka and The Chocolate Factory on September 3.

All hail Caesar (a motion-captured Andy Serkis), a chimpanzee given a giant intelligence boost by well-meaning scientists looking for a cure for Alzheimer’s. Unfortunately, Caesar’s new-found self-awareness will lead him to spark a rebellion against humans ...

Some japes with apes As suitably bananas as anything Hollywood usually reheats, this franchise reboot looks to ape the success of its forebears Q KATE CROWLEY

WITH serendiptous timing – or perhaps with one film seeking to ape the likely success of another – there are not one, but two films starring our simian sidekicks on release this week. One is a fascinating glimpse at the efforts to humanise a monkey, in a documentary about a halfforgotten project, while the other is a glimpse at how the worm could turn and enslave us all. By “worm” I mean “monkey”, of course, as Rise of the Planet of the Worms sounds rather less menacing than Rise of the Planet of the Apes – which comprises most of this week’s review. First, as an entree, it’s worth mentioning Project Nim; a new documentary about Nim Chimpsky – a chimpanzee raised from birth with humans, and which was studied extensively (in controversial

FILM OF THE WEEK: Rise of the Planet of the Apes +++ (12A) 106 mins Director: Rupert Wyatt Starring: James Franco, Andy Serkis, Tom Felton, Freida Pinto, John Lithgow, Brian Cox, one smart monkey

OUR VERDICT: THOSE looking for one smart monkey would do well to catch up with a fascinating documentary, Project Nim. However, the big release offers an interesting version of how the well-known film franchise’s back-story could have started out, telling of how the first apes came to rise up against Man. So, your box office choice is: a cute chimp in a red jumper, or angry apes out to seize the planet. Over to you ...

circumstances) to see if he could learn language skills, thus shedding light on how humans develop language and rationalisation abilities. The late Nim, who died in 2000, would possibly conclude that humans are all bananas, on the basis of this fascinating film, which is more a study of human ambition and vanities than about whether well-meaning projects with chimpanzees are doomed. Then again, I imagine that “bananas” was rarely far from Nim’s mind, much as “bananas”

comes to the forefront when faced with Rise of the Planet of the Apes – yet another Hollywood re-imagining and reboot of an old franchise. Will Rodman (James Franco) is a well-meaning research scientist working away in San Francisco on developing a cure for Alzheimer’s, with the lab performing tests on lots and lots of monkeys, or one species or another. A n e xc i t i n g n e w “cure” – which I’ll call the McGuffin – is given to an ordinary chimpanzee, called Caesar (Andy Serkis), whose mental

powers begin to rapidly accelerate and develop. Caesar’s growing intelligence is a marvel – and a menace, as the McGuffin has given him The Smarts to realise that – wait a minute – all the humans want to do is monkey around with him and his kind, with a nice little trip to the Dissection and Autopsy labs awaiting him, down the road. Caesar’s new-found self-awareness, and his realisation that he, and the other test subjects, serve only to serve the humans’ experimentation needs, lead him to rebel against his role. Will believes that the McGuffin is of enormous importance, and that it’s the breakthrough that the lab have been looking for – but he’s deeply troubled by the ethical questions and consequences of their playing God in this way. However, all hail Caesar – as the chimpanzee follows the well-worn

phrase of monkey see, monkey do. He decides to put the boot on the other paw, spreads the McGuffin to many of his peers, and, suddenly, instead of there being just one smart ape, there’s an army of fast and angry apes going bananas in San Franciso. Banana skins or not, it’s possible that humanity faces a slippery slope, with an ape army on the loose. But what can a bunch of not-so-dumb apes really do? (Hint: what’s the name of the film, folks?) Held back as a summer blockbuster, it’s likely to do swingingly well at the box office, despite being a little more thoughtful than Transformers, et al. Not quite as ridiculously entertaining as Troy McClure’s showboating role in the musical, Stop the Planet of the Apes, I Want to Get Off!, it’s the best film about monkeys around, bar one.

18 August 2011 BLANCH GAZETTE 25

The physical disc’s long, slow death impeded the brand’s march to dominance? To some degree, people were put off investing in Blu Ray because they were only just getting ove r t h e switch from VHS to DVD; the prospect of another expensive upgrade was more than a little unpalatable. However, the real reason for the slow growth of the Blu Ray has been the hesitance of the early adopters – those who buy

of elements; hard drives have got bigger and cheaper, internet connections have got faster, and the computer has become a part of the sitting room,

instead of the bedroom. Just as the iPod made CDs less necessary, the vast improvement in computer technology is making the DVD (or Blu Ray, as the case may be) redundant. Companies such as Apple have seen the way the wind is blowing. A few years ago, they released the MacBook Air; a super-slim, super-light laptop with no disc drive. L a s t we e k , t h e y released a new version of their Mac Mini desktop, one that dropped the disc drive, too. They also made the latest version of their operating system (reviewed

below) download-only, meaning you could not buy a disc version of it, even if you wanted to. The attraction for companies such as Apple to do this is obvious. They now have tighter control on software, so it is harder to pirate, and they do not have to waste money printing and distributing discs to send out to shops around the world. For the user, it also makes sense – it is quicker, less messy and often cheaper than physical discs. However, there are downsides, and we are likely to hear plenty about how having a digital film is not the same as a physical one. That said, this is the way the trend is going, and it is only a matter of time before people will

have to go out of their way to find a computer with a disc drive.

Mac IS X Lion

THE latest release of Apple’s OS X – the operating system used on Mac computers – show a company clearly trying to blend its desktops and laptops with the iPad. Following the big cat theme of previous OS X releases, this latest version is called Lion, and is arguably the most blatant upgrade from the company in a long time. Many new features are now in place, including Mission Control and LaunchPad, which make it easier to see what is running and open to applications respectively. The latter is effectively

the same as the iPad and iPhone home screen, and there is no doubt that Apple has applied a lot of its learning from those devices here. If you are not used to gestures, this can take a bit of getting used to, but in many ways it can be handy. Overall, the same can be said for Lion – it has plenty to like, but a lot of things that existing and even new Mac users may feel uneasy about. Expect some of these creases to be ironed out when the first tweak is released in the weeks ahead. Mac OS X Lion is available on the Mac App Store, for €24. Visit for the latest tech news, reviews and views.


group All of your latest local news, sport, features and pictures are now just a click away


ONLY a few years ago, a fierce battle raged between two new video formats, both of which were vying to replace the DVD. Both offered better quality video and audio, more flexibility and plenty more space; eventually, Blu Ray won out. However, since it became the de facto next generation of video formats in early 2008, the format has struggled to really gain a foothold in the market. This is despite the cost of Blu Ray players and discs plummeting in the past few years, and despite the migration of viewers to high-definition TV sets that suit the format perfectly. So, what barrier has

into technology before it goes mainstream. For them, technology has moved passed the disc format, and there is no reason for them to invest in equipment that they no longer need. They have gone the digital download route instead. What made this possible was a perfect storm




26 BLANCH GAZETTE 18 August 2011







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Permission sought for retention of the following items: (A) Fire escape stairwell from first floor area to rear, (B) additional disability access doorway from café area to the side and (C) additional single storey floor space with retail use to rear of building all at St. Brigid’s Cottages Shopping Centre, Main Street, Blanchardstown, Dublin 15, For Patrick Molloy. This planning application may be inspected or purchased at a fee not exceeding the reasonable cost of making a copy at the offices of the planning authority during its public opening hours and a submission or observation may be made to the authority in writing on payment of the prescribed fee (20 Euros) within the period of 5 weeks beginning on the date of receipt by the authority of this application.

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18 August 2011 BLANCH GAZETTE 27

28 BLANCH GAZETTE 18 August 2011

GazetteSport Sport

Doyler’s Dreamboats in action

Super Injunction were not to be put under wraps

Aoife of Odd Shaped Balls

Coolmine Tag End of the summer of rugby fun T

HE Coolmine-organised summer of tag rugby came to an end recently when the final of the competition was held in Barnhall’s Parsonstown grounds. Fifty teams from all over the country took part in the one-day competition. This year, three teams from Coolmine RFC were invited to play in this prestigious competition, Super Injunction, 3 Girls 1 Tag and Odd Shaped Balls. Each side played exceptionally well, with Odd Shaped Balls reaching the final of the Bowl competition.

Odd Shaped Balls reach the final of the Bowl competition but they lost to Raging Hormones

Daff Taggers team were all smiles

Paypal untouchable in attack

Mary Callaghan heads for the line

3 Girls 1 Tag

18 August 2011 BLANCH GAZETTE 29

in association with



STARof theMONTH SHEENA MCELROY GRANGE golf club’s Sheena McElroy secured her third Irish senior title at Adare Manor when she defeated Pauline Walsh in the final of the national event, another accolade in what has already been a successful year, continuing to underline her dominance of this event in recent years by closing out the match on the 13th green. This win came on the back of her international success earlier in the year.

TEAMof theMONTH INSAKA FC THE fledgling club’s maiden double arrived in style when they claimed the Ronnie Bradshaw Cup and U-18 NDSL Premier titles this season, vindication of the management’s faith in their abilities and commitment to soccer, moulding Blanchardstown-based players from Angola, Congo, South Africa, Nigeria, Poland, Romania and Serbia into a cohesive unit.

AUTUMN has more than arrived, well ahead of schedule, and the sporting success of our teams and individuals continues to impress. Sheena McElroy continued the form that saw her lead the Irish Seniors Team at the European Senior Team Championships in Berlin last August and winning the Portuguese Senior Ladies’ Golf Competition at Vilamoura in the Algarve in January, with her success in the Irish senior competition. Insaka FC are attracting to soccer children from all sorts of different backgrounds, building a capacity for integration. Their coach said: “We

can encourage them to go on and join clubs in their locality, like Hartstown or Corduff. They develop their skills through us and then go off to play for the local clubs.”

Let us know! Let us know about your achievements in sport, so that the Gazette can tell the rest of Dublin — and give you, or your team, a chance of being one of our monthly stars. Contact us on 01 601 0240 or to tell us all about your successes, and follow us on Facebook at gazettesport.

Local triathlete Irene Walsh on her way to victory in the Focus Ireland triathlon in Dun Laoghaire

Home win for Walsh in triathlon event

THE Borough of Dun Laoghaire Kingstown was once again host to this year’s Focus Ireland sprint Triathlon last week. Local lady Irene Walsh stormed home to take the women’s title for the third time in four years, just missing out on the tri hattrick last year by coming in second place. Having undertaken her first Ironman in 1989 in a time just over 14 hours, she is one of Ireland’s longest-competing female athletes, well known and respected by her peers. Her winning time of

1:14:25 secured her top spot on the podium, along with the male top performers from Pulse Tri, who put on an impressive show. King for the day was John Connolly with a winning time of 1:06:39. The shorter tri distance male and female event was won by Brian McCann, in 1:16:05, and Alexandra Birney in 1:15:21 respectively. The early start for volunteers, marshals and the 200 competitors was taken in good spirits. According to Joyce Loughnan of Focus Ireland, “91 cent in every €1 goes towards providing core services

for the homeless charity. The triathlon event alone has raised over €490,000 since 2005, with a target of €100,000 for 2011.” The multi-sport event of swimming, cycling and running attracts many new competitors, as well as experienced athletes and weekend warriors, training up for more challenging events later on in the season. After a quick bike check by local husband and wife team, Eddie and Monica Roe, of Mike’s Bikes, the first wave set off at 8.15am. The swim conditions for the 350m or 750m distances in the East Pier

were close to ideal with, a bit of a pull needed on the way out, and somewhat easier on the turnaround. The closed road and no drafting on the bikes made it safe and achievable for all levels, while the two loop run of the pier made perfect viewing for the many spectators who had gathered to join in the atmosphere and cheer home the entrants. The cost of hosting the event is made possible by donations from the main sponsor, KBC Bank, promotion through Q102 and the participants, who raise sponsorship and train to compete in the event.

Big winner: Win tickets to see UCD in friendlies Hession reward for performance

Villarreal finished UCD AFC have announced recently that fourth in last seasons La they will host two friend- Liga and so are qualifiers ly matches at the Belfield for next season’s ChamATHLETE Hessionpions of Athenry League. As well Bowl againstPaul Scotland’s presented as this,with they have a wide St Athletic JohnstoneClub FC onisJuly cheque after the best performrange of talented foot10,aand Spain’s Villarreal of16. the weekend at the at their disposal ballers CFance on July Woodie’s DIY AAI Senior with Track Barcelona target St Johnstone finished and Field at MorManchester eighth in theChampionships SLP last and former ton Stadium, season, and have aSantry. long United player, Giuseppe tradition in Scottish Rossi, on the top of the Picture credit: Patplayers Murphy / SPORTSFILE list. football. Former GazetteSpor t and include Sir Alex Ferguson UCD are giving lucky and Ally McCoist.

readers the chance to win pairs of tickets to these matches. Simply answer the following question: Where was Villarreal striker Guiseppe Rossi born? Send your answer, together with your name, address and mobile phone number, to sport@, with “UCD Friendlies” in the subject line of the mail.

UCD’s Robbie Benson

30 BLANCH GAZETTE 18 August 2011

GazetteSport Sport FastSport

No long faces here: Carrick claims title in charity challenge TWENTY-one teams competed in the Supporting Ovarian Cancer Knowledge (SOCK) Team SJ Challenge last week at the Cheval Riding Club in Oldtown as part of the Blanchardstown-based fundraiser. Taylor Cummins and Laura Carrick were the only two captains who managed to keep all poles in place. Laura Carrick, riding My Foxy Lass, was the eventual winner on a time of 34.69 while Taylor Cummins passed the finish line on 38.22.

Clonee host debut T20 match at Porterstown


CLONEE Cricket Club, with the support of group of local people, organised a T-20 cricket match at the new Porterstown Park to raise funds for the Imran Khan foundation. A number of food stalls were set-up in the park where it was estimated over 250 people attended during the day. Special guest on the day was the Minister of Transport, Tourism and Sports, Leo Varadkar along with Cllr. Eithne Loftus and the chairman of Cricket Ireland, David Williams, also attended the event. A special thanks to Fingal Co Co for their continued support in developing cricket in West Dublin.

Leinster, featuring four North Dublin Eagles players, brought home the province’s first ever provincial title last week

Locals shine as Leinster win IRL INTER-PROVINCIAL Leinster Munster

24 23

A LEINSTER side featuring four North Dublin Eagles’ players claimed the province’s first ever interprovincial success, wrestling the title from Munster in Limerick last week. Conor McNally put in a player-of-the-match performance, and he was joined in the panel by clubmates Peter Carr, Mick Fitzmaurice and Stephen Boyle as they edged home in a humdinger of a match. In what would turn out

to be a nail-biting clash, Brian O’Brien took just three minutes to open the scoring when he slipped in down the right-hand side to put Leinster ahead. Munster gathered themselves and came straight back at the champions-elect when they won possession and, after sustained pressure, Joe Keane crossed over to put his side back in the game. Shane Mullally failed to add the conversion, leaving Leinster in front by just two points, but it was a margin that was overturned when a 20-yard break from Brendan Guilfoyle gave them the perfect platform.

Prop Aaron McCloskey pushed towards the Leinster try line and touched down for Munster’s second try of the game. It pushed into an 8-6 lead with the half-time whistle looming. It left Munster looking to kick on in the second half as they needed to win by 22 points if they wanted to retain their interprovincial title. And they did just that when what appeared to be a loose kick from Mullally found its way in behind the Leinster defence was chased by wing Mark Tuohy, who outpaced everyone field to touch down.

This time Mullally added the extras as Munster took a ten-point lead. The Blues needed to rally, and forcing a mistake at scrum time, Wayne Kerr gathered possession and crashed over to pull his side back to within two. Munster bounced back, thanks to Lemaki Veipulu rounding his opposite man to touch down in the corner, leaving the score at 18-12 to Munster. Stephen Mullhall found his way over the line to make the game 18 apiece. Mullally slotted over a drop goal to give his side a one-point lead going into the closing moments

of the game. True to their form Leinster bounced back once more, thanks to substitute Peter Carr who put them 24-19 up with just one minute left in play. All Leinster had to do was gathered the kick-off but great work from Munster meant they were back on the front foot. After getting into the Leinster ten-yard line, a swift back-line move put Alan McNamara into the corner to set up a nail-biting finale. Luckily for Leinster Mullally missed for the fourth time on the day to hand Leinster a hardearned win.

18 August 2011 BLANCH GAZETTE 31

in association with


CLUB NOTICEBOARD ST BRIGID’S THE final summer camp week will

Colleen Barrett, Sorcha Furlong,

run from August 22 to 25. Get your

Elaine Kelly and Noelle Healy in their

application form from www.stbrig-

All-Ireland quarter-final vs Cork

this Saturday.

Congratulations to Paul Winters

Senior footballers face Plunkett’s

and the Dublin minor hurlers on

on Sunday at 10.30am in Mar tin

their superb win over Waterford to

Savage Park. Senior 2s face Per-

reach the All-Ireland final.

egrine’s in Blakestown on Sunday

Hard luck to Alan and Daire on

Junior A and B footballers also

Daire vs Antrim this Saturday in the

play league games on Sunday at

All-Ireland U-21 semi-final.

12pm in Russell Park.

Well done to Eoin Kennedy who

Club lotto is on its summer break

advanced in the 60x30 All-Ireland

and will resume on September 1

h a n d b a l l s i n g l e s . Eo i n f a c e s a

with a jackpot of €15,000.

quarter-final showdown vs Ducksie Walsh this Saturday. Best of luck to Aisling McKenna,

Peregrine’s keep up their flying form 0-9 2-6

ST PEREGRINE’S continued their fine form in the Ladies Cup recently when they followed up a draw against Kilmacud Crokes a week earlier with this fine win over St Margaret’s in Balreesk. Against the side managed by Pat Stritch, the current Dublin B ladies’ manager, Peregrine’s star ted the brighter, but struggled in the final third of the pitch against a good St Margaret’s back line. Although they were finding the breaks hard to come by, they did manage to get on the scoreboard through J e n ny J u d g e i n t h e fourth minute. Margaret’s equalised shortly thereafter, but a Helena Reddy goal in the 14th minute put the Clonsilla side three points clear. That precipitated a

Margaret’s onslaught, and they went on to dominate the remainder of the half, but could not convert in front of the posts, kicking five wides in 17 minutes, along with being b l o c ke d d ow n f o u r times by the brave Peregrine’s defence, who were doing everything in their power to keep their rampant opponents at bay. Amongst that defensive rigidity, stand-in goalkeeper, Orla Cawley, pulled off a super top-corner save while, at the far end, Annette Redican sent over a fine point from a pass back out on the edge of the D from Judge in the corner for a 1-3 to 0-5 half-time lead. Again, the second half saw St Margaret’s up the ante further when they went in search of scores, and were relentless in the first 10 minutes. But for solid defending from Niamh Brady and Louise Kidd, the

hosts could have been well ahead shortly after the break. It was Brady’s first game back after three weeks in the States on holidays, which made it all the more impressive. Both chased down runners and put pressure on kickers as St Margaret’s amassed ten wides in the second half alone. Nonetheless, they had equalised after six minutes of the second half and looked the better of the two sides, dominating the play. Peregrine’s were in no mood to lie down, though, and Judge showed her form to point once again in the 40th minute before her side found a new gear. Dublin Duo Louise Kidd and Emma Travers won four of the next five kick-0outs, taking huge pressure off the back line and set up a platform for attack. A superb pass from Reddy inside to full for-

Harolds Cross.

THE annual Erin go Bragh golf classic

Maria on 087 238 0741 or Carol-Ann

will take place in the K Club on Friday,

on 087 629 2024.

August 26. The format is scramble. A

There was no winner of last week’s

team of four is €320. For more infor-

lotto jackpot. Numbers drawn were

mation, please contact George Burke

12, 15, 17 and 22. This week’s draw

on 087 9709 795.

jackpot will be €1,500. The draw will

Annual club dinner dance is taking place on Saturday, November 5 in Park Plaza, Tyrrelstown. Tickets are €60 per person (strictly over-18s).

St Margaret’s St Peregrine’s

Club night at the dogs will take place on Frida y, Oc tober 2 1 in


St Peregrine’s ladies footballers registered a fine win over St Margaret’s at Balreask


at 10.30am.

their defeat to Tipp. Best of luck to

ward Judge set her free and she found the net to relieve the pressure. Margaret’s added two more points in the final ten minutes. However, Megan Leech was substituted back on into corner forward and she won two fine balls and laid off both for Judge and Reddy, both in great form at this stage, to register vital scores and wrap up the win. Speaking afterwards, manager Conor Barry was delighted with the progress his side was making. “It was a great result, and great to back up last week’s huge draw against Kilmacud Crokes, a team who had beaten us 5-20 v 0-04 only 15 months ago before I took on the job. “What was most impressive was our work rate in the last 15 minutes when Margaret’s had equalised, we didn’t lie down and, just like last week, we worked extremely hard.”

Five-course meal, band, DJ, and bar extension until 2am. Deposit of

be held this Friday in Kelly’s Bar in Ongar. To be in with a chance to win the jackpot, please return your completed lotto tickets to the box in the Paddocks before 9pm this Friday.

€20 required and people can pay in

It is so easy to forget to return your

instalments over the coming months.

Lotto tickets, so why not sign up to

Contact Natasha on 087 959 5048,

the annual draw membership.

ST PEREGRINE’S CONGRATULATIONS to Eric Lowndes and the Dublin minor hurlers on

All the best to Dan Smyth on his travels.

reaching the minor All-Ireland final.

Club lotto was not won; numbers

Hard luck to the Dublin senior hurl-

drawn were 6, 7, 11 and 26. Next

ers in their defeat to Tipp, they did the county proud. Adult ladies were unlucky in their defeat in cup game last week. Back to football this week: AFL 2 footballers are home to St Brigid’s on

week’s jackpot is €3,800. Any member not buying lotto tickets, visit and support your club for only €2 a week, and is also available to play online using the link on the club website.

Sunday at 10.30am; AFL 6 footballers

Club shop is open on Mondays,

are home to St Sylvester’s Sunday at

Wednesdays and Fridays from 6 to

12pm; AFL 9 footballers also home to

7pm, and on Saturdays from 10am to

St Sylvester’s Sunday at 3pm.


Tickets for the Dublin / Donegal All-

Club will be running a fundraising

Ireland semi must be ordered ASAP;

initiative, Take Me Out, based on the

please contact Ciaran Murtagh on

popular TV series. This is planned for

086 359 4194.

September 17.

Follow GazetteSport on Facebook and Twitter and online at


PEREGRINE’S FLIGHT: Blakestown ladies continue to shine in football cup P31

AWARDS July’s winners revealed inside P29


Orwell Wheelers’ Stephen McNally on the podium at the European Masters’ Track Championship event in Italy last week

AUGUST 18, 2011

McNally claims a Euro gold medal

STEPHEN McNally has described his gold medal ride in the European Masters Track Championships as his “best moment in cycling.” The Dunboyne resident took victory in the final of the 3km Pursuit in the 45-49 year-old category at the Fassa Bortolo Velodrome in Montichiari, Italy, beating Britain’s Trevor Burke in the final by just over 2.3 seconds in a time of 3m35.641s. McNally had qualified fastest in a time of 3m33.801 seconds, fractionally under three seconds faster than Burke. Heading to Italy for his first international competition, indeed his first-ever competition on an indoor track, McNally had expected that he would need to better his best Sundrive Road 3km time of 3m45.69s by at least ten sec-

onds to challenge for a medal. Lowering his personal best by almost 12 seconds was, therefore, a matter of some personal pride. “This is my best moment in cycling,” he said afterwards. “I went out a bit fast in the qualifying run, and eased back slightly in the second kilometre. Luckily, I still had something in the tank. “We only had a couple of hours before the final and it was oppressively hot in the velodrome, but I guess it was the same for Trevor, too. I just tried to recover as well as I could, drink plenty of water and keep my feet up. “The plan for the final was to track Trevor all the way and wind it up with three or four laps to go. I guess he had a similar plan and he pulled the trigger with four laps to go. I waited another lap before beginning my finishing effort

and I managed to pull out a decent gap by the finish. “The final was the hardest pursuit ride I’ve ever done, it was so hard to even match Trevor for the first two kilometres. “This was my first indoor competition so hopefully there’s scope for improvement, particularly on my lines. “I’ve had great encouragement from many people but I’d like to say a special thank you to Aidan Ryan and Mark Kiely who helped with my training, and to Aideen Collard who kept me updated every lap during both rides and especially my family who have been very supportive throughout my training.” McNally hasn’t had much opportunity to celebrate his success as he is due to compete in the 750m Time Trial on Wednesday and the 10km Scratch Race on Thursday.


INSIDE: Remembering a blooming good fl ower festival P10 TRAVEL: P22 & 23 August 18, 2011 Local rider takes Euro track gold in Italy Foot...

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