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July 4, 2013

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Blanchardstown • Blakestown • Hartstown • Coolmine • Tyrrelstown • Dunboyne • Corduff • Mulhuddart • Ongar

Month XX, 2012

2 BLANCH Gazette XX Month 2013

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Tell your minions this Despicable sequel is pretty delightful, actually

CINEMA P20 July 4, 2013

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Month XX, 2012 Blanchardstown • Blakestown • Hartstown • Coolmine • Tyrrelstown • Dunboyne • Corduff • Mulhuddart • Ongar

INSIDE: Horse-riding fans neigh where to see some of the very best equestrian skills in the country P10

courts: Armed man avoids jail after breaking into woman’s home Page 4

Shout out: The swinging 1960s brought to stage Camogie:

St Brigid’s host successful mini-leagues Page 31

Jiu Jitsu:

Gold and silver for local fighter in Rome Page 30

ALSOINSIDE: GALLERIES....................... 8 DUBLIN LIFE....................11 OUT&ABOUT...................17 CLASSIFIEDS.................26 SPORT............................27

tivoli Theatre presents Irish

premiere of hit Off-Broadway comedy revue - Shout! The Mod Musical, directed by Blanchardstown native Daniel Maguire. Opening July 4, this show is a nostalgic nod to London’s swinging sixties. Pictured are Stella Bass, Sharon Clancy, Laura Bella Griffin, Laura Kelly and Kelly Marie Ni Cheallaigh.

Train station opens after three-year delay Hansfield facility cost €10 million and was left idle after construction

 laura webb

Dublin 15’s ghost train station has come to life following the official opening of the long-awaited Hansfield facility. The €10 million building,

lying idle since it was constructed back in 2010, saw its first train stop at the station on June 28, almost three years later. It was due to open in September 2010 but could not because it had no access

road. Following numerous meetings between developers, Irish Rail, Fingal County Council and the National Transport Authority, construction on the access road began last year and was

recently completed. The new station will come as a welcome relief to local residents in the area who bought on the understanding that there would be a train station on their doorstep. Full Story on Page 5

4 BLANCH Gazette 4 July 2013

dublin GAZETTe newspapers i n f o r m at i o n

courts Victim declines to accept apology

Block 3A, Mill Bank Business Park, Lucan Tel: 01 - 6010240 Dublin Gazette Newspapers publish eight weekly quality free titles, covering the greater Dublin area from Swords to Dun Laoghaire

c o n ta c t s Managing Director: Michael McGovern Editor: Mimi Murray Judge Mary Ellen Ring suspended the five-year sentence because of the accused’s efforts to rehabilitate

Production Editor: Jessica Maile Acting Picture Editor: Laura Webb Sports Editor: Rob Heigh Financial Controller: Carly Lynch Advertising Production: Suzanne Sheehy Advertising Sales: 01 - 6010240

Find us on 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.

Armed man threatened to ‘chop up’ woman’s son A man has avoided jail after bursting into a woman’s house armed with a sword-like blade and threatening to “chop up” her son. A follow-up search of the accused’s house revealed €8,000 worth of cocaine and an invoice book. Andrew Farrell (31) has 18 previous convictions including three counts of indecency. These involve a case where he exposed himself to teenage girls three times in one day. Farrell, formerly of Grove Cour t, Grove Road, Blanchardstown pleaded guilty to aggravated burglar y and criminal damage at Lisa Breen’s home on Whitestown Drive, Blanchardstown and possession of drugs for sale or supply at his home between December 13 and 15, 2009.

Judge Mar y Ellen Ring imposed a suspended sentence despite hearing from Ms Breen that Farrell’s apology was unacceptable and “there should be consequences” for his actions. The judge said she was “going to take a step that many may find difficult to understand” before imposing a fiveyear suspended sentence. She also ordered Farrell pay €5,000 in compensation.

Counselling Dublin Circuit Criminal Court heard the victims do not want money from Farrell but Judge Ring said they may find it useful to pay for counselling. She said the money can be paid to charity if they continue to refuse it. Judge Ring said she

was suspending the sentence because of Farrell’s efforts to rehabilitate and the fact that he has been offered a job “in this economic climate”. She also took into account a favourable report from the Probation Service.

Fear Ms Breen, who was in the house at the time with her 18-year-old daughter, told the court that she was rooted to the spot with fear as Farrell swung the large knife around. She said the incident had a huge effect on their lives and her daughter now locks herself in her room and suffers panic attacks whenever she goes outside. Farrell apologised to Ms Breen from the witness box and said

he hates himself “for p u t t i n g my s e l f , t h e victims and my family through this”. Ms Breen, who was at the back of the court, responded: “His apology, after three-and-ahalf years, is not acceptable. There should be consequences for things like this.” Garda Adrian Kildea told prosecuting counsel Fiona McGowan BL that on December 13, Ms Breen arrived home to find her front window smashed. Two days later she saw Farrell standing outside her house, shouting “Where’s Daniel?” He pushed his way into the house while w av i n g a f o o t- l o n g blade with a bend in the middle. Farrell searched each room of the house before approaching the girl who was getting

ready for school. He demanded to know where her brother was and said he was going to “chop him up”. He then said to Ms Breen: “Tell your son I’m going to cut him into pieces.” H e a d d e d : “ H e ’s going to get that” while making a gun sign with his fingers. Gardai later arrested Farrell. They failed to find the weapon in his house but did locate the cocaine, invoice book and weighing scales. Farrell claimed in interview that he went to the house after a row several days previously with a group which included Ms Breen’s son. He denied having the blade and said he would have just punched his target if he found him in the house.

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transport Lack of access road caused the delay

Hansfield train station finally opens  laura webb

The train has finally reached its destination with the official opening of the long-awaited Hansfield Train Station. It took almost three years to open after being constructed back in 2010, but on June 28 Hansfield train station was used for the first time. The station was built by local developers as part of the M3 Parkway Rail Commuter project development. The multimillion euro

project was due to open in September 2010 but was unable to because there was no access road to the station. Following numerous meetings between developers, Irish Rail, Fingal County Council and the National Transport Authority, construction on the access road began last year and was recently completed. The construction of the road was funded by the National Transport Authority. The new station will come as a welcome relief

to local residents in the area who bought under the pretence that there would be a train station on their doorstep. Residents held many protests and campaigned hard for the station to open. Speaking at the opening, Minister for Transport Leo Varadkar said it marks the end of a long campaign to get the station opened. “I am very pleased to see that trains are finally stopping at the station and I want to thank Iarnrod Eireann, Fingal Coun-

Hansfield station, open three years after construction was completed

ty Council, the NTA and developers for their efforts to resolve this issue. “Residents can now take the Dunboyne train from here into the city, in just 25 minutes on the fastest services.” Local Mulhuddart Cllr Ruth Coppinger (SP) commented that residents deserve credit for its opening. “Residents should be

cutting the ribbon to open Hansfield station today. It was primarily the campaigning of local residents two years ago which forced this issue onto the agenda. “It was the public meetings, petitions and particularly the march in June 2011 from Ongar Village to the ghost station which pressured the government, Irish Rail, Fingal

County Council and the developers to tackle this,” she added. A planning application for a car park is also expected to be lodged with Fingal County Council once the Hansfield Strategic Development Zone (SDZ) is changed. In the meantime, there are 70 on street parking spaces at the station and bicycle racks.

house tax Raising funds for campaign Hundreds of people are expected to attend a local fundraising event organised by Dublin West Community members of the Campaign Against Property Tax and Austerity (CAPTA) The event is set to take place on July 6 in St Peregrine’s GAA club in Blakestown. There will be music and a DJ, with a raffle and spot prizes. The night will also outline CAPTA’s nominating candidates for the 2014 local elections. Organisers said: “Although the night will be a fun-filled event, it will also be used to briefly highlight pertinent issues now facing the campaign, and the next steps.” For further information contact

6 BLANCH Gazette 4 July 2013

radio Project looks to help minorities in Dublin 15 area

Phoenix FM announce free training courses Phoenix FM is delighted to announce a new free training and volunteering opportunity thanks to the Caring Communities Foundation Grant Scheme. The project aims to equip members of migrant groups

and/or ethnic minorities operating within Dublin 15 with the necessary skills and training to actively engage with mainstream, community and independent media. Free training will be pro-

vided to 10 participants. The course will meet the requirements of the QQI Level 4 course Introduction to Community Radio and will also include modules on media literacy and media for social justice.

The course will run from July 16 until Tuesday, August 13 from 10.30am to 5pm every Tuesday. If you are interested in getting involved in the project, email with a

subject line of Introduction to Community Radio Course July 2013. Places are allocated on the first come first served basis and people living or working in Dublin 15 will be prioritised.

Garden: Grounds cleared pictured are a

group of staff members from the Digital Experience team in Symantec, Dublin 15, who took part in a volunteering event to clean the grounds and gardens of the Irish Institute of Naturopathic Medicine Suicide Prevention. The IINM were very pleased with the work done and the team from Symantec said the event was “inspiring”.

Job seeking: New Web service to enhance CVs for users

FastNews Original stage production The Dublin 15 Youth Theatre will meet every Tuesday throughout the month of July as they prepare an original piece of theatre for stage. Follow the D15 youth Theatre Facebook page for up to date details and audition dates for the show or see for further updates.


Get stars in your eyes The Dunsink Observatory holds special family and youth group evenings for those who want to learn more about astronomy and space. Families are given a short presentation followed by live stargazing (weather permitting) and a lively question and answer session. For more information or to register for the next family event see www.dunsink.

Get an intro to make your CV stand out in the crowd  Laura Webb

A Dublin 15 company is helping jobseekers enhance their CV with a new website that is getting potential employees noticed. Clonee business, has been up and running since April. With the Irish jobs market at its most competitive, standing out from the hundreds of applicants is what many jobseekers want. Local man Mark McDonald realised thought enhancing CVs was the way forward for those actively seeking employment. “I was

in the manufacturing industry and for the last 10 years I recruited engineering personnel. During that process is where the idea germinated from. “I used to find that when you got to a stage in the recruitment process when you have filtered through CVs and down to 30 trying to get the six to ten you want to call for interviews, when you’re at that point, you start to see a large degree of repetition. “It was at that point when I thought if there was another tool for employers and recruiters at that process it would really help someone’s

application stand out,” he said. The company’s main aim is to help job seekers get noticed. “We achieve this by creating an online profile page which, when completed, the job seeker can then use it to accompany any job application. “The CV Intro profile will contain information relevant to a particular job application as well as the option for the job seeker to utilise their own 60 second elevator pitch video. “This is their opportunity to introduce themselves to a potential employer and highlight their skills, talents, and

expertise. “There is an option for the jobseeker to use CV keywords or buzz words. They would be words in the CV that are relevant to that particular job application. “In the recruitment process, those looking at the hundreds of CVs tend to speed read them and isolate key words you want to see that are relevant on a jobs spec that you designed as an employer. The job-seeker is advised on this along the way. “T here is also an option for employers to print out CVs from the jobseeker’s profile. All that information comes

in to us, we tidy it up, validate it and when it is done the jobseeker has full access to their account for 12 months.” He went on to say that the business is not taking away from the importance of a traditional CV. “We are not trying to diminish the role of a traditional CV because it still holds a huge amount of importance in the recruitment process. “What the CV intro profile is all about is, rather than doing away with the CV, it is about enhancing and augmenting whatever is contained in the CV and bring you up to an online platform,” he added.

4 July 2013 BLANCH Gazette 7

8 BLANCH Gazette 4 July 2013

gazetteGALLERIES bike Check: keeping it safe at millennium park

Wheely good fun cycling in the park A

s part of National Bike Week locals had a pedal around Millennium Park recently. The road safety section of Fingal County Council, in conjunction with community gardai and representatives from An Taisce met fifth and sixth class schoolchildren from three local schools for a bike

safety talk, a helmet and bike check with a bike mechanic and some fun events such as slow bike races and an obstacle course, and finishing with a bicycle parade Pedal Around The Park, featuring some historic bicycles and some work bicycles such as An Post, St John’s Ambulance and Garda bikes.

Teachers with Jack Lawlor, Denis Drutas, Benjaman Mihutesu and Fingal’s new mayor Kieran Dennison (FG) with Megan Ward Byrne

Conor Hanlon Houlihan

Garda David Maher

Ihab Benkhalifa and teacher Siobhan Maguire from Castaheany Educate Together

4 July 2013 BLANCH Gazette 9

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Cian McCollagh, Megan Ward Byrne and Gift Osazee

Garda David Maher and Kerrie Ward

Aoife O’Driscoll and Kaci Bolger

Sergeant Connolly, Eugene Sweeney, Jade Oliver, Stephen Taylor and Silvana DiCioccio

Paul O’Connor and Anara Ibe Bobo

Karl Duffy and Darragh Rothwell

10 BLANCH Gazette 4 July 2013


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Lucy Kennedy and Ailbhe Stephens

Maria Fusco and Danielle Macari

Jessica Joyce, Tori McCormack and Niamh Kelly

Dublin horse show T

HE 140th Discover Ireland Dublin Horse Show had its dates announced recently. The announcement event, hosted by the Royal Dublin Society, was held at The Champagne Bar in the RDS overlooking ring 2 where an incredible side saddle show jumping demonstration

by Susan Oakes took place, as well as pony rides for children who attended. The Discover Ireland Dublin Horse Show is the largest summer event in Dublin, attracting tens of thousands of people and 1,500 horses and ponies to the RDS annually.

Norma Sheahan with Capall the Horse and her children Isabelle, Jessica and Jodi

Etain Boyd and Romy Carroll

4 July 2013 Gazette 11

feature P15


Let Dublin Gazette Newspapers take you on a tour of the news and events taking place across the city and county this week, as well as the latest from our schools

asdfsdaf businessP27 P16


diary P14

centenary: shedding light on the 1913 Lockout

Exhibition puts day-to-day tenement living in spotlight n e w ly- e l e c t e d Lord Mayor of Dublin Oisin Quinn (Lab) last week launched a new look at the 1913 Lockout. The innovative Dublin Tenement Experience: Living the Lockout is a performance and interpretation-based exhibition on the 1913 Lockout. Living the Lockout will be the first in a series of activities to mark the centenary of the historic

1913 Lockout and is part of Ireland’s Decade of Commemorations. D u b l i n Te n e m e n t Experience: Living the Lockout will make use of the ground floor of a former tenement house – 14 Henrietta Street – to tell the story of the Lockout as well as portraying what day-to-day life was like in Dublin’s tenements 100 years ago. The exhibition will tell the story of the times through the use

of drama, audio-visual presentation and exhibition materials including archival records, photographs and personal testimonies. As well as the formal launch by the Lord Mayor, the event included a ten-minute excerpt from the Living the Lockout’s drama, a tour of 14 Henrietta Street’s groundfloor and short presentations from each of the partners in the project.

This unique project – which is a joint initiative of Dublin City Council, the Irish Congress of Trade Unions (ICTU) and the Irish Heritage Trust – will be open to the public for two months only from July 4 to August 31, 2013, six days per week and it will be closed on Wednesdays. Tickets are priced at €5.50 and can be bought for any admission from 10am to 5pm.

Some scenes from the Dublin Tenement Experience: Living the Lockout which opens this week


12 Gazette 4 July 2013



Avoid mugging by staying alert - and using Krav Maga  Natalie Burke

A lot of people have a tendency to be distracted when out and about, either because they are looking at their phones while walking or listening to music. But it’s this distraction that can result in you becoming a victim of mugging, according to Matt Comerford, an Israeli-trained instructor with the International Krav Maga Federation. Matt, who teaches Krav Maga, a form of selfdefence, in Celbridge, Co Kildare, says that when it

comes to muggers choosing their opportunities, it is believed they will choose a target who is distracted and likely to be surprised. W hen it comes to being prepared for any situation, Matt says prevention is the best medicine. “Being able to prevent an attack/mugging is preferable to being able to physically deal with it. If we can successfully prevent an attack, then we have exposed ourselves to considerably less risk, even if you are trained in what to

do, prevention is always best!” he said. To prevent a potential attack, Matt says people need to be more aware of their surroundings, take in what is going on around them, and stay alert. Having practised Krav Maga for over six years, Matt has more than 10 years of experience participating in physical training and fitness. In 2012, he travelled to Israel for intensive training with some of the top Krav Maga experts from around the world. Phoenix Krav Maga

is running self-defence classes in Celbridge using Krav Maga; one of the world’s most renowned self-defence systems. It is used by military and police units globally because of its effectiveness and simplicity. In classes, par ticipants learn to deal with a wide range of confrontations, either by de-escalating and avoiding potential attacks completely, or by disabling the attacker if necessary. For further info, visit www.phoenixkravmaga. ie, or e-mail:

Matt Comerford Phoenix Krav Maga Instructor

awards Women in business Network Dublin, an organisation for women in business, hosted its annual Businesswomen of the Year awards. The luncheon took place at the Dylan Hotel recently, presented by AIB, to a crowd of high achieving businesswomen, and a few men too. President of Network Dublin, Kate Fox, said a record number of nominations were made this year and she was delighted at the high level of interest. Winners of the three categories for the 2013 awards were: Ruth Savill - Paris Bakery and Pastry Ltd - Businesswoman of the Year (self employed), Kate Mullahy – Ormsby & Rhodes - Businesswoman of the Year (employee) and Aileen Rogers – Ready Girls - New Business of the Year.

Ruth Savill, Kate Fox, Network president Dublin and Aileen Rogers

4 July 2013 Gazette 13


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Promoting our city for Italians BUZZ-Y SPELLING BEE CHALLENGE A STILLORGAN boy was crowned the best speller in Leinster recently, taking the title of Eason’s Leinster Spelling Bee winner . Niall Meagher, from St Laurence’s BNS, went on to represent the province at the Eason Spelling Bee All-Ireland Final in RTE. Niall started his Spelling Bee journey in January and soared through the Dublin County Bee. The Eason Spelling Bee, in association with RTE 2FM’s Tubridy, is now in its third year

All aboard The Gathering bus at Dublin Airport ... Calogero Urruso, Roberto Rambaldelli, Valentina Salaris (of Tourism Ireland), Giovanni Carlo Rossi Barilli, Ivan Pertusi and Paolo Giovanni Bianco

and is Ireland’s ultimate spelling contest, with all four provincial finals and the All-Ireland Final broadcast live on 2FM’s Tubridy. Although Niall lost on the day to a Galway girl, his spelling success was deservedly congratulated by Tubridy at the event.

CELEBRATING THE ICONIC HILL 16 DUBLIN Fringe Festival is calling on all GAA fans, actors, volunteers and sports fans to get involved in a project about Dublin GAA and the iconic Hill 16 stand, which will take place as part of the festival in

September. The project is being put together in association with Belgian theatre company CAMPO/hetKIP, which previously created a piece about local football fans in Ghent in Belgium. This September, their local version of the

show will be all about Dublin’s GAA fans and Hill 16. With a large ensemble cast, the production team is hoping to get fans on board with the project. To find out more, or to get involved, email or call 01 670 6106.




Bar, their action-packed itinerary included traditional “iconic” attractions such as the Guinness Storehouse, Trinity College and Dublin Castle, as well as some of the city’s clubs and bars, including The George, The Dragon Bar and PantiBar. Designed by Failte Ireland, their itinerary also included visits to St Patrick’s Cathedral and the Hugh Lane Gallery, while they enjoyed some of our world-class cuisine at Cornucopia on Wicklow Street, as well as visiting the Winding Stair on Ormond Quay.


MORE than two million Italians will be reading about Dublin in the coming weeks, after a group of journalists set their sights on Dublin for the gay travel market in Italy. The Italian journalists, who write for a variety of print and online publications, arrived in Dublin recently on a three-day fact-finding visit here to check out some of the many things to see and do around the city, as well as visiting some of the city’s gay-friendly venues. While staying at The Morgan Hotel in Temple

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

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Homeward bound for O’Sullivan


A R ATHFARNHAM woman recently got the chance of a lifetime when she was one of the lucky ones chosen to work on gender and equality issues in Brussels, during the six months of Ireland’s EU Presidency. Fiona O’Sullivan is packing her bags to leave the EU headquarters in Brussels on June 30 as Ireland’s presidential tenure expires and Lithuania prepares to take up the position until the end of the year. Department of Justice and Equality attache Fiona spoke to The Gazette about her time spent in Brussels working on gender and equality issues.

“I have been here in Brussels as part of the Irish Presidency dealing with equality issues relating to a few different legislative proposals on gender balance on company boards and such. “The Commission is trying to get 40% women on non-executive corporate boards but there is a lot of controversy over it from member states. “A lot of them think the matter should be a national issue and should be achieved through voluntary approaches. “We had working groups set up last year on the gender balance proposal and since then the proposal has been redrafted for the council. “We have just finished the first reading of it to all

the member states. The Lithuanian Presidency will continue to work with it from [this month] on, when they take over.” “It’s difficult to progress the proposal when lots of the Member-States are against it. Gender balance is an important goal. We have made progress though; and on a national level in Ireland, for instance, the female quota for the election of a political candidate is now 30% or else the parties will not get State funding. On State bodies the targets are also 30% in Ireland. “We are concentrating now on the private sector and companies listed on the stock exchange in Europe; so these are big companies. “Ireland opened the

Fiona O’Sullivan, Department of Justice and Equality: “The whole Irish Presidency has been seen as a great

negotiations on this in the [European] council and now the report on it is due.” Fiona, who comes from Rathfarnham, started off doing a business and politics degree in Trinity College. It is not the first time she has made Brussels, the base of the EU Parliament, her home. As an undergraduate, she discovered that she had a greater interest in the EU side of her degree, so she went on to read European studies for her MA before going to Brussels as an intern after her graduation. “After that internship I spent six years working in

Ireland as a civil servant but I always said I’d love to go back to Brussels. “This presidency has been great for me and was a way of putting forward Ireland’s position in Europe. I’ve chaired many meetings here because we had all the power due to the presidency. There is a lot of behind the scenes work here too and I’ve worked with many NGOs and lobbyists too over my term here. “Some of the most popular gender and equality issues I came across here were to do with

equal treatment, maternity rights and the free movement of immigrant workers. Women in the media is a big issue too as, although there are a lot of women working in this field, they are not in decision-making roles and the percentages of women at the top level are much lower. Although they are not binding, we (as part of the Irish Presidency), made recommendations on all of this.” Although she is looking forward to coming home to Ireland, Fiona is also wistful about leaving

Brussels. “I can’t believe it’s coming to an end. The whole Irish Presidency has been seen as a great success and we’ve achieved a lot during the six months. “Personally, it’s been a great opportunity and is really a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Because there are a lot more states in the EU, with the number reaching 28 as of July 1, it now takes 14 years for your turn at the presidency to come around. “I don’t know if I’ll be able to come back then but we’ll see.”


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More ways to save money THIS week, the money doctor continues his series on saving cash. With more than 100 top tips to dip into, he’s sure to have plenty of ideas you haven’t thought of. However, if you have any cash-saving suggestions of your own that you’d like to share, please send them to

Neill Callan, Harvey Norman

Plugged in to provide the best shopping experience Neill Callan has worked with one of Ireland’s leading retailers for over nine years. Neill began working in Harvey Norman, Dundalk, while in college, before moving to the Tralee store for three years. He is now the manager of the electrical department in Harvey Norman’s flagship store in Blanchardstown Retail Park, at Blanchardstown Shopping Centre. He says: “Harvey Norman has made a sizeable investment into revamping the Blanchardstown store. “The focus of the renovation was

to heighten the customer’s shopping experience within the store. Customer interaction and technology are at the forefront of the design. We have introduced a lot of new live demonstration areas so customers can experience new technologies from laptops to cameras, from TVs to docking stations and from ovens to vacuum cleaners. We have almost everything plugged in so you can try before you buy; our technology showroom is now easily the most innovative showroom in Ireland”.

How long have you been in business?

our competitors who often try to compete on price alone.

Harvey Norman has been trading in Ireland since 2003. The Blanchardstown store opened in 2006 when we took over the old ESB unit. In November 2012 we expanded the store into the old Reids and Clerys units to create one big Harvey Norman superstore.

What makes your business successful?

There are many factors that contribute to the success of the Harvey Norman Blanchardstown store. We only stock the best quality brands, our prices are always competitive, our staff are highly trained and we aim to be first to the market with new technology. All of which has helped us to build up a fantastic loyal customer base.

What do you offer your clients that differs from your competitors?

Our biggest asset is our staff. We invest heavily in training our staff to become specialists in their relevant departments. Our staff focus on passing the relevant information on to our customers, allowing the customer to make an informed decision. We aim to find the best product to suit the customer’s needs at the best price; this differentiates us from

How has the recession affected your business?

The recession has, in a way, been a good thing for Harvey Norman. It has made us refocus on the core values of our business. Customer service is king. We have introduced initiatives to heighten every customer’s before and after sales experience. As stated previously, investing in our staff continues to be at the core of our success and combined with a customer orientated marketing strategy is driving more people through our doors, growing our sales and increasing our market share.

What is your ambition for the business?

For the Blanchardstown store to be the number one store in the Harvey Norman group and the number one retail destination for customers looking for electrical, computers, furniture or bedding. With our newly renovated store, I believe that we can achieve this.

What was the worst job you’ve had?

I worked for my uncle for the summer when I was 15 in his sawmill dipping boards to make garden sheds… never work for family!

4. Check your mortgage and loan interest rates Sometimes we go to great lengths at the initial stages of obtaining a mortgage or loan trying to ensure we get the most competitive interest rate at the time. Once taken out, there is a tendency to overlook the maintenance of that loan. You could very easily find out that your lender’s original rate, or current advertised interest rate, bears no resemblance to your own. This is also a time to check if currently on a variable rate and your lender is uncompetitive, to see whether you should switch to another lender. 5. Avail of your annual capital gains tax (CGT) exemptions The first €1,270 of chargeable gains to an individual arising from the disposal of a capital asset (eg shares) is exempt. This is allowable for each tax year, but is not transferable between spouses. The rate payable on capi-

tal gains tax is 33% over the threshold. For capital acquisition taxes (CAT), remember the threshold from parent to child (Group A of three groups) is currently €225,000 for each child. The tax rate for CAT is also 33% over the thresholds.

6. Check your life and health cover You could be over insured. Do a review on all your insurances. Are you getting the best value ? What happens if you or your spouse die or become permanently incapacitated? If you took out life cover ( with home mortgages it is mandatory ) you may have been a smoker at the time. Once you are smoke free for 12 months, you could save yourself over 50% of the annual premiums. Worth checking out.  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

funding: boost for start-up business

Government announces new €21m commercialisation fund  Bairbre Ni Bhraonain

FUNDING worth €21 million is to be made available for start-up business in Ireland, Minister for Jobs Enterprise and Innovation Richard Bruton (FG) announced recently. The new funding will be delivered through Enterprise Ireland’s commercialisation fund and will be targeted to make innovative, new products by technology start-ups commercially viable. Commercialisation fund projects must fill a gap or market need and include developing innovations which will be ready to be launched as start-up companies in two to five years. Making the announcement, Minister Bruton said: “Over the past decade, Ireland has built a system of research and innovation that ranks

extremely well internationally – the challenge now at a time of jobs crisis is to put in place measures that will turn these achievements into economic growth and jobs. “Through the Action Plan for Jobs we have implemented a range of changes aimed at turning good ideas into good jobs, including the research prioritisation exercise, the creation of a central technology transfer office, a onestop-shop for commercialising research out of universities, and the establishment of new technology centres.” So far this year, Enterprise Ireland has funded 24 commercialisation projects which have been valued at €5.3 million in a wide range of areas including ICT (information computer technology), lifesciences, food, manufacturing, engineer-

Minister Richard Bruton:

ing and energy. Director of ICT commercialisation Gearoid Mooney said: “The [current] commercialisation fund is making a real difference in terms of business growth and competitiveness in Ireland. “The breadth of projects targeting new market opportunities is remarkable. Projects funded so far this year

range from a vaccine to protect against harmful bacteria commonly affecting cystic fibrosis patients to the development of a fuel cell power module which will turn hydrogen into electricity in a more cost effective and efficient way.” Enterprise Ireland is seeking applications for the new funding and the closing date is August 28.

4 July 2013 GAZETTE 17



OUT&ABOUT Never be out of the loop on what’s happening in Dublin! Let Out&About be your guide to all that is stylish, cultural and essential across the city and beyond this week




Frances has been busy splitting her time between a number of musical performances across the country and the work of the charity she set up in 2008


Big heart, stronger voice


IT has been over four years since wellknown singer Frances Black set up the Rise Foundation, a charity dedicated to helping families understand the nature of addiction. With her time split between her dedication to a cause so close to her heart, and furthering her career as one of Ireland’s most well-loved singers, Frances is feeling “stronger” than ever. And it’s no coincidence that her recently released album has been named just that. Stronger, a compilation of cover songs, was released just two months ago. “It is an album of cover version songs

that I have a very strong connection with. They are all songs that mean something special to me and it was just one of the most enjoyable experiences I have ever had. So far we have got great reviews and a great reaction,” she said. Following the release of her album, Frances has been busy splitting her time between a number of musical performances across the country and the work of the charity she set up in 2008. “I’m constantly working and constantly gigging. I’m hoping to go to America at the end of the year, so it’s very busy. It’s hard sometimes to manage both, but you just get through the days, you get through the hours. It keeps me going, that’s for sure.” Frances has previously dealt with

alcoholism and now in recovery, has dedicated her time to helping the families of those who have yet to take the same route. The charity is so close to her heart, she went back to study as an addiction counsellor and says it helps when it comes to battling her own demons. “Giving back is a very important part of my life. So I certainly feel very happy around the work that I do. I love working with the families and it’s very rewarding and very fulfilling, particularly when you see family members getting the support and the help that they need.” The RISE (Recovery In a Safe Environment) foundation runs 10-week family programmes to help educate families about addiction.

With funding an ongoing problem for the charity, Frances will be taking part in a family fun day, in Baldoyle, in aid of the charity this weekend. “I want to raise awareness about the work that we do but also to help raise much-needed funds.” The family fun day and sale of work will take place on Sunday, July 7 at Baldoyle Community Hall on Main Street, Baldoyle. The event will see face-painting, balloon making, angel card reading and a wheel of fortune, as well as an appearance by Frances herself, who will be saying a few words about the important foundation. The event will be held from 11am until 5pm. For more information about the charity, visit www.

THE Gazette Newspaper has teamed up with Dogs Trust to help find homes for unwanted and abandoned dogs. Our Dog Of The Week is Adele. She is a threeyear-old old Rottweiler. With her super sweet adorable nature, Adele has really captured the hearts of her canine carers, and just wants cuddles at every available opportunity! She is an incredibly sociable lady who loves meeting new people, playing and chasing her toys. She would really enjoy some basic training as she is just so eager to please. If you think you could give beautiful Adele the home she so badly needs, please contact Dogs Trust on 01-879 1000. They are based in Finglas, just off exit 5 on the M50. Map and directions can be found on their website www. You can also find them on Facebook dogstrustireland or Twitter @DogsTrust_IE.


18 Gazette 4 July 2013



tech review: a microspeaker with a loud punch

A little speaker that whips up a big e-Storm Britain’s Bitmore have been earning a reputation over the last few years of being manufacturers of genuinely solid state technology, and Gazette Music were intrigued when we heard about their new e-Storm Superbass Speaker. Having been awarded the RedDot design award in 2012, the reviews and word of mouth about this speaker stopped us in our tracks. But that was the last time the tracks stopped since our

 ROB heigh

e-Storm arrived, as it has been wall-to-wall music as we tested its capabilities with everything we could think to throw at it. From its Apple-esque unboxing experience, the e-Storm surprises and

delights. It is a deliciously compact and surprising piece of bluetooth audio tech. At a teeny six by six by five cm in size, its silver and black frame packs a surprising weight which gives a vivid hint that it packs a punch well above its division. Having purchased a similarly-sized speaker as a birthday present recently, the e-Storm knocked it out clean, with its crisp clarity and deep bass capability.

Simply and quickly connected via Bluetooth and charged via USB connection, the e-Storm was up and running in seconds. It also has an SD slot for cards up to 8GB, and a headphone jack connection if bluetooth is not available. But how does the speaker perform under laboratory conditions? Well, last week’s immense, complex Kanye West album Yeezus was first up to the plate, and the e-Storm

Easily sync’d with your device, the e-Storm speaker is the ideal microspeaker

more than coped with its complexities and low frequencies. More nuanced works like Bon Iver and The Blue Nile hold all of their gentle majesty. Being a podcast afficionado, Gazette Music’s shower listening tends to

mean taking tech into the bathroom, which has its own dangers. This makes the e-Storm a waterproof joy, as no longer do we need to worry about condensation damaging built-in speakers. This is genuinely an alloccasions microspeaker.

It makes no sense that such a small speaker at its very affordable price point could be this good, but it is, and that makes it a solid recommendation for music lovers. The e-Storm is available from for £49.99 plus shipping.

4 July 2013 Gazette 19


20 Gazette 4 July 2013



THE pavilioN THEATRE 01 231 2929 Paperbelle

PAPERBELLE’S world is black and white and she likes it that way. She’s heard of colour; but would prefer things to stay as they are. The colours, on the other hand, want to play games and they want Paperbelle to join in. Paperbelle’s world is changing – will she try to stop it or might she find it’s not as bad as it first seemed…? July 6, tickets €10/8.

Draiocht 01 885 2622 Aidan Bishop

NATIVE New Yorker Aidan Bishop began his comedy career in his hometown and since moving to Dublin he has become one of the top comics working today, best known as resident MC of the International Comedy Club in Dublin for the past 10 years. July 6, tickets €12/€10.

Mill THEATRE Dundrum 01 296 9340 Ferguson & Barwick

KATHY Barwick is a household name in folk and bluegrass music circles in Northern California. An acclaimed master of guitar, banjo, mandolin bass, and dobro she currently performs with The Mountain Laurel Bluegrass Band and The Mike Justis Band. For this tour she teams up with singer songwriter Gary Ferguson who hails from Baltimore, USA. July 16, tickets €12.


review: Gru is back

Your minions will love this one THE discussion about the pantheon of animated films is usually along the lines of “best non-Pixar movie”. Such is Lu xo Jr ’s dominance of the field, others can barely get a look in, which at times just feels unfair. At Dreamworks, they produced the Shrek, Kung Fu Panda and Madagascar franchises, as well as the excellent Croods among others. Un i ve r s a l S t u d i o s have had their own successes, most notably a few years ago when a super-villain adopted three kids to live with him and his little yellow minions. Given the success of its predecessor, it was to be expected that Despicable Me 2 wasn’t far away. T h e o r i g i n a l g ave Universal the animation franchise it craved, a veritable money printing machine with its quotable leads (“It’s so f luffy!”) and toy-bait minions. Indeed, the film joined the bona-fide Universal cash cows last year when it got its own ride at Universal Studios in Orlando, joining such luminaries as Twister and The Mummy. O k ay, s o m ay b e

 Paul hosford

Things have really loosened up at Gru’s place (above and below)

that isn’t the ringing endorsement I made it sound like, but the ride is excellent and is proving to be one of the most popular in the park (for the record, The Mummy ride is excellent, too. The movies were not). So, with the sequel and blockbuster season well under way, comes the first big animated feature of the summer. With Pixar having sent Mike and Sully back to University last weekend in the States, opening on an incredible $82 million, the bar has been set pretty high. This time around, the script is f lipped and Gru is looking to get out of the super-villain game altogether, turning his one-time weapons of mass destruction into food processing machines and taking care of the three sisters he adopted first time around. It is a difficult transition for Gru, with the girls growing up and

Film of the Week: Despicable Me 2 hhh (U) 98 mins Directors: Chris Renaud, Pierre Coffin Starring: Kristen Wiig, Steve Carell, Russell Brand, Ken Jeong, Steve Coogan, Benjamin Bratt


SOME tremendously funny bits, some great visual gags and the presence of minions willl make this a thoroughly worthwhile trip to the cinema. Kids will love the slapstick provided by the minions, while Gru is a phenomenal character for adults. It’s just a shame the plot is a bit all over the place.

beginning to date. All in all, it is a rough transition for the onetime super-villain. That is until a shadowy organisation called the Anti Villain League ask for his help in recovering an entire lab that is making a serum that can turn people into monsters.

So, yes, the storyline is weak, but when a man in lycra is dominating the box office, is too much to ask for a bit of suspension of disbelief for a kids’ film? In fact, the film doesn’t necessarily suffer that much from a lack of storyline, it suffers because it tries to

shoehorn a storyline in. I would have been h a p py e n o u g h w i t h some kind of retread of the last film with new jokes, so winsome are the characters. Kristen Wiig’s addit i o n a s G r u ’s l ove interest is particularly pleasing, but isn’t Wiig always great? The neglect of two of the three daughters leaves the youngest, Agnes, to shine once more and the minions, who are set to get a spin-off film, get plenty of screen time, which is excellent. All in all, it’s a very enjoyable and funny 90 minutes.

4 July 2013 GAZETTE 21



A challenging game to master

IT’S been ages since I featured any PC games – apologies for that, as PC games (and gamers) are often overlooked for console games instead. As, err, I prove about 97.3% of the time ... Of course, PC gamers continue to enjoy terrific games in many genres, with the platform proving perfect for a tactical title like Company of Heroes 2, the long-awaited sequel to the hit 2006 game that’s out now. Simply put, it’s a real-time strategy (RTS) game, based on the particularly bloody conflict along the Eastern Front around 1945. History records how the Communists eventually crushed the Nazis with a brutal war machine from the East – under your control, however, things could go very dif-


ferently. CoH2’s meaty singleplayer campaign takes in a significant chunk of the period, from the chaotic siege of Stalingrad through to the final march on Berlin, with you directing your troops on the field through a number of historically accurate theatres of war. At first glance, Relic’s title looks pretty similar to a hundred similar strategy games beforehand – albeit a very pretty and detailed one, at that – but a number of interesting management options,

coupled with challenging line-of-sight rules that affect what you see (and what the enemy sees), can quickly seize defeat from the jaws of victory – or vice versa. Throw in some quirky, but slightly gimmicky, weather conditions that can affect the flow of battle, and it’s another memorable touch to have added on the sequel. Ultima tely, CoH2 hasn’t tinkered with the winning RTS formula of its predecessor too much – but then, when you’ve crafted such an enjoyable, challenging title, why would you? And all that is before you even try multiplayer matches to really test your armchair general skills ... Company of Heroes 2 is available now; prices vary at retail.

The intricately-designed troops and machinery in the Eastern Front-based environments in Call of Heroes 2 will push your tactical skills to the limit


Photo-sharing app adds video capability JUST in case you missed the recent news (or haven’t been updating your apps), Instagram, the popular photo-sharing and editing application, can now also shoot (up to) 15 seconds of video clips, too. While most users will just use Instagram to take photos, there’s no doubt millions will shoot video clips to share. So, if you have any great clips from your area, feel free to let me know by emailing its link to: sdillon@, for possible inclusion in a future best-of gallery for readers. Happy shooting!

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22 GAZETTE 4 July 2013



TRAVEL Castlemartyr, Co Cork

Enjoy 20% off a great weekend retreat  NATALIE BURKE

A SPECIALIST for luxury self-catering breaks and holidays, Natural Retreats is offering 20% off on all stays until July 19 to guests visiting its Irish and British properties. This is a saving of up to €340. This exclusive offer applies to the last remaining holidays in Castlemartyr, Co Cork, and The Heritage, Co Laois, as well as Natural Retreats locations across Britain – John O’Groats and West Highlands in Scotland, the Llyn Peninsula in North Wales, Trewhiddle and Fistral Beach in Cornwall, and the Yorkshire Dales. Guests receive a complimentary welcome hamper filled with local produce such as bread, cheese and wine, and are granted full access to the five-star hotel facilities, including spa, restaurants and championship golf courses. The Natural Retreats concierge team can discuss available dates with you, as well as offering further information. For further information, call 01 685 3013. Terms and conditions apply, and offers are subject to availability.

The Spa Salveo at the four-star Knockranny House Hotel in Westport, Co Mayo, offers a range of indulgent treatments to leave you feeling refreshed


West is best for a break  NATALIE BURKE

THERE are plenty of reasons why we are all so tempted to flock to the west of Ireland when we get the opportunity to take a few days off. For some of us, it’s the scenery. For others, the adventure sports on offer along the west coast. More often, it’s the ideal destination for avid golfers, surfers and anglers. But, when it comes to treating yourself to a relaxing, rejuvenating getaway, it seems that the west of Ireland is just the place to make your escape. Knockranny House Hotel and Spa is a fourstar hotel in Westport, Co Mayo. Perched on the outskirts of the bustling town, the hotel is located just far enough away to feel secluded, but close enough to walk into town. With bedroom views facing the magnificent

Croagh Patrick, it was tempting to leave the mountain trekking to the more adventurous and instead soak up the intimate and cosy atmosphere of the hotel. A handsome Victorianstyle manor, Knockranny is vast with numerous rooms, yet still manages to feel intimate and capture a warm atmosphere, which was well-promoted by the friendly staff. The log fires, vintagestyle furniture and oldfashioned charm add to the hotel’s general sense of a traditional Irish welcome.

Comforts And it was the extra comforts that helped the huge bedrooms feel like a home away from home – the choice of old paperbacks on the book shelf in the bedroom, the reading chair in the corner, and the wide windows with mountain views. However, it was the Spa Salveo that I was mak-

ing a beeline for; in my books, the most essential ingredient to any “relaxing” weekend away. The award-winning spa encompasses a vitality pool with hydrotherapy stations, an expansive thermal spa suite, various relaxation areas and 12 spacious treatment rooms. With a range of spa treatments offered, Spa Salveo has a huge array of tempting treats to choose from, with everything from facials and body wraps to manicures and massages. I opted for the spa’s newest signature treatment – the Wellness and Radiance Ritual, which incorporates a two-hour treatment using luxury products from the Kerstin Florian range. The ritual includes a deluxe foot soak and destressing foot massage, a full-body salt scrub, a wellness back massage and a pro-radiance facial.

Knockranny House Hotel: ideal for a romantic getaway or a weekend with the girls

To say that I felt rejuvenated afterwards would be a slight understatement. And, since no pampering weekend is complete without feeding the soul, it was imperative that we made the most of the culinary wonders that were offered by the hotel’s impressive La Fougere restaurant. With chef Seamus Commons – twice named Best Chef in Connacht by the Food & Wine Maga-

zine Awards – the restaurant itself has earned the title Best Restaurant in Connaught 2011, along with two AA Rosettes, making it worth the road trip purely for the food itself. Starters ranged from goat cheese parfait to beef carpaccio, while mains included pan-fried seabass, baked Atlantic cod and parmesan gnocchi. Grapefruit parfait, bitter chocolate tart and Carrowholly cheeses

were just some of the desserts to top it all off. Ideal for a romantic weekend away or a getaway with the girls, Knockranny House Hotel and Spa offer a range of deals for your next ramble to the west. The two-hour Wellness and Radiance Ritual costs €105 per person, and includes a light lunch. For further information, see or call 098 28600.

4 July 2013 BLANCH GAZETTE 23


Lots to see, and so much more to do  MIMI MURRAY

DRIVING past Castlebar with Croagh Patrick looming in the distance, we knew we had almost reached our destination – the pretty town of Westport. It’s a hotspot for hen and stag parties, but also a place filled with outdoorsy things to do and lots to keep young folk entertained. We stayed in the heart of the town, in the Westport Plaza and Castlecourt Hotel. We were per fectly positioned for all the activities we intended to partake in that weekend. Westport Plaza is a friendly, family-run hotel that has a courtyard linking it to the Castlecourt Hotel. Rooms are extremely spacious, and ours had plenty of room for our inquisitive 11-month-old to roam around in. Beds are big and bathrooms feature sleek, black marble. One of the big draws

to the Westport region is the Great Western Greenway – a traffic-free cycling and walking trail that follows the route of the old Westport to Achill railway. At 42km, this is the longest offroad walking and cycling trail in Ireland. After conferring with the very friendly and knowledgeable people --------------------------

‘Westport Plaza is a friendly, family-run hotel. Rooms are extremely spacious’ --------------------------

at Clew Bay bike hire, and deciding not to have the stamina for the full trip, my husband started his journey at the second leg, from the picturesque town of Newport, and on to Mulranny. The journey is probably the most scenic leg of the trail, taking in the spectacular views of the

rugged Nephin mountain range on one side, and Clew Bay on the other. This trail will really appeal to the leisurely cyclist as the gradient is pretty flat. There is also plenty of wildlife to see, including the odd stag and hen. With a headwind coming in from the Atlantic, the journey to Mulranny offered a bit of a challenge in places; however, there are plenty of viewing platforms for a wellearned rest and most bike hire companies will pick you up at different points on the trail. Myself, my mum and my little boy headed for Westport House, which is an amazing place for children, with lots to do including zorbing, archery, bouncy castles, playgrounds, a mini train ride and swan boats on a very pretty lake. My 11-month-old was too young for many of the things on offer, but his eyes lit up, after a little trepidation, at the



TRAVEL New York is gearing up for Restaurant Week

Tuck into a Big Apple dining deal  NATALIE BURKE

If you can tear yourself away from the comfort of Westport Plaza and Castlecourt Hotel (right, below), there are many activities to see and enjoy around Westport, including the 42km Great Western Greenway (main)

sight of the soft ball and activity area. He climbed and tumbled and had a fantastic time playing, making sure mammy was always a short distance away. The train ride, which circumnavigates the lake, extracted squeals of delight. Before we took our leave, we toured the magnificent house, which hosts the Westport Festival. Westport is also a great food destination. On our first night we ate in the hotel, and our meal was prepared to a really high standard. My husband went for sea trout, whilst I went for sirloin steak – something I never usually order, but which was a delicious cut of meat.

My mum loved her salmon starter, which was infused with lots of coriander. On the second night, we ate in an exceptional restaurant – An Port Mor. Our starters of crab cake and scallops were devoured with gusto, and mains included hake, blue sea trout and crab tagliatelle. Desserts were summer y and light, and included a marshmal-

low-textured raspberry meringue. To top it all off, we had delicious homemade limoncello, which was on the house and extremely potent! After a hearty breakfast the following morning, we packed our bags and departed for home, with a promise to return to the West for further adventures. For details on Westport Plaza, see www.

FOR a bite of the Big Apple, experience New York City Restaurant Week this summer with American Holidays. Visitors can enjoy more than 20 days of dining deals, from July 22 to August 16, with three-course lunches for $25 ($19) and dinners for $38 (plus tip and tax) at more than 300 restaurants. American Holidays is offering a special NYC package of a threenight stay at the threestar Wellington Hotel from just €1,059pp. Alternatively, you could upgrade to the four-star Crowne Plaza Hotel, Times Square from only €1,075pp. The price includes return flights from Shannon (prices from Dublin are available). For further information, call American Holidays at 01 673 3804, or see

24 BLANCH gazette 4 July 2013





The Citroen DS range is touring the country

Citroen roadshow to highlight the DS range LAST year, I was nothing short of bowing before the Citroen DS5, such was my love for the unique design of the car. Thankfully, Citroen is taking the DS range on a tour of Ireland to let potential buyers get up close and personal with the award-winning models from the distinctively-styled DS line – DS3, DS4, DS5 and the new DS3 Cabrio. The DS Tour launched in Drogheda in May and will travel the country until August, visiting most major cities and towns. Those interested in checking it out should visit their nearest DS Discovery Tour location over the coming weeks, and get behind the wheel of one of Citroen’s most exclusive and stylish cars. For further information, you can see

Weathered logos can be replaced, free

Ford owners can avail of a logo replacement OVER time, the iconic blue oval on all Ford vehicles can become faded or damaged, but Ford Ireland has just announced a free replacement programme for the logo at participating Ford dealerships. The replacement offer is open to anyone with a Ford vehicle that is up to 10 years old. First introduced on the 1928 Model A car, the Ford blue oval was devised by Ford’s first chief engineer and designer, Childe Harold Wills. Today, it is one of the most recognisable brands in the world. Like any part of a motor vehicle, it is liable to corrosion and accidental damage. Ford drivers can get more information on the blue oval replacement programme at www., or by contacting their local Ford dealer.

The V40-R Design: unbelievable presence, with a visual personality that is so understated it is almost sinister

V40 R-design: volvo deliver an impressive piece of kit

Hats off to the surprising motor that oozes coolness n Cormac Curtis

PRETTY much every car company out there is trying their best to appeal to new buyers – the kind of buyer that wouldn’t have necessarily been attracted to them in the past. Some of the larger, premium brands are making some big noises about their new models, fresh designs and outside-thebox thinking – but along comes Volvo. They’re a conservative bunch, and they tend not to get involved in extravagant fanfare – they just do things right. So, when it came to the new V40, I nearly fell out of my cot when I saw it. If there is one car that has taken me by complete surprise in 2013, then this is it. In a shade that Volvo calls Rebel Blue, this little rocket looked unlike any Volvo I had ever seen. Unlike so many cars in this segment, it’s so much more than a boy racer’s fantasy hot hatch.

It has unbelievable presence, with a visual personality that is so understated that it is almost sinister – think Javier Bardem in No Country for Old Men, and you’ll get the picture. It has a low stance, without any dramatic, over-the-top or aggressive lines, and features a purposeful front end, without resorting to wildly-angled headlights or a massive front grille. The look is determined, purposeful, strong, and really attractive.

Highlights The lines of the car flow nicely toward the rear, with some very pleasing chrome highlights drawing the eye across the body, tapering toward the boot – and the rear end doesn’t disappoint, either. The rear lights are a beautifully-designed, boomerang shape, and they dictate the unusual shape of the boot. I was expecting a bit of

a sheep in wolf’s clothing, to be honest, but the V40 R design does even more on the inside than it does on the outside. The V40 R-Design that I tested was priced at €30,865 – about €3,000 over the entry-level price, but for that you get an impressive list of kit. In terms of visual appeal, I can’t compare it to the ES or SE specs, but this a very special car on the inside. At this level, the interior is treated to sports floor mats, aluminium sports pedals, sports upholstery with R-design logo, aluminium trim and an incredibly cool active TFT screen with blue instrument dials. There is a leather sports steering wheel, with a shape unlike any other I have driven, that is a delight to touch. Front sports seats with side support were incredibly comfortable under all the conditions I drove it – including some of the nastiest speed bumps in

Unlike so many cars in its segment, this V40 is so much more than a boy racer’s fantasy hot hatch

north County Dublin – striking 17” IXON-alloy wheels, and lots of special R-Design silver pieces, including lower front nose and grille, matt grille with logo, twin exhaust pipes, an ironstone rear diffuser and the all-important lowered chassis for rear sports performance. The controls were pretty intuitive, if not the greatest I’ve ever used, but within a day or two I could control all the important stuff without looking – which is a plus! Despite being completely blind-sided by this car, it was truly reassur-

ing to see that Volvo were at pains to point out the extensive safety features at the top of the standard features specifications list for this car. The first 13 features mentioned were airbag and safety features to protect both occupants and pedestrians. Simply put – my hat is off to Volvo for the V40 R-Design. It oozes coolness, it drives and handles like a proper driver’s car – and even the guys who run the car park next to my office stopped me to talk about it for a good 10 minutes, so it’s got to be good!

4 July 2013 BLANCH GAZETTE 25






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For Recruitment contact Fidelma on 01 652 3269 COMPUTER SOFTWARE DEVELOPER PHB DUBLIN SOUTHSIDE DUN Laoghaire Immediate opportunity exists Technology

We are seeking a Computer Software Developer who can convert the current DataEase 4.52 Dos working environment of our busy International Car Rental Operation to fully interface with DataEase 7.2 and our web site written in PHB language. • The person should have strong knowledge of Dataease,SQL, RDBMS and have relevant experience of 2 years. • The system will also interface with other Web platforms and Windows Applications in XML feed. • The candidate will have totally fluent English at International level • Excellent communication skills • Must have at least 2 years work experience using PHB • Be available within One Months notice and available for interview 2 days notice required. • References must be available upon request The product will be focused on operator ease of use and customer friendliness. Please forward CV for consideration and cover letter to HR Manager, Sixt Rent a car, Rochestown Avenue Dun Laoghaire, Co Dublin. NO AGENCY ASSISTANCE REQUIRED.

4 July 2013 BLANCH Gazette 27

feature P29

asdfsdaf gaelic games P27 P31

dublinsport Let the Gazette keep you up to date with all the best local sporting action from around the city as we cover all the stories that matter to you and your community


athletics P28

FastSport Win a place on dublin ladies summer camp:

Ireland Under-18 internationals Jessica McGirr and Hannah Grieve, Sean Walsh, Electric Ireland and Ireland senior international Nikki Symmons at the launch

hockey: gathering event set to bring cream of european sport to UCD

International championship graces Dublin later in month THE Irish Hockey Association launched the Electric Ireland U-18 Women’s EuroHockey Championships this week, starting the countdown for the event which will take place in UCD from July 29 to August 4. The tournament, running as part of The Gathering, will feature the cream of European underage hockey with Germany, Netherlands, Belgium, England, Russia, France and Wales joining the hosts for six days of competition. Having finished fourth two summers ago in Utrecht, Ireland have good pedi-

gree at this age group and will be hopeful in a group that features Celtic rivals France and Wales. The Dutch, however, are an imposing force at underage level and they make up the other component of the initial four-team group with the top two teams going on to play in the semi-finals and the other sides contesting the relegation battle. Irish Under-18 players Jessica McGirr – a Loreto Beaufort student – and Hannah Grieve were on hand to launch the event in Dublin along with senior inter-

national Nikki Symmons. Symmons spoke of her pride in playing underage hockey for Ireland and the spur it gave her to push for the senior setup: “I know how special it is to pull on the green shirt for Ireland having just received my 200th cap for the senior team last weekend and these girls will be bursting with pride when they get to do this in front of our home support at UCD in a major tournament. “There is a great opportunity for the Irish public to see the future stars of Irish hockey in action up close and many of

these players will be knocking down the door of the senior team in the very near future. I’m looking forward to getting out and supporting them myself.” The IHA have launched an early bird season ticket offer for the tournament to allow fans to watch the six full days of action including the finals day at a fraction of the cost of individual tickets for the tournament. Supporters can avail of the early bird six-day ticket for €30 up until Friday, July 19. Early bird tickets will be available on

Dublin Gazette Newspapers and the Dublin Ladies Gaelic Football Association are inviting you to join in a competition for one of two places at the 2013 Dublin Ladies’ Summer Camps. To win a place at either of the camps, which run from July 29 to August 2 at St Margaret’s GAA club and from August 12 to 16 at St Peregrine’s, answer this simple question: In what year did Dublin win the Ladies’ All-Ireland final? Email your answer to, including your preferred week of attendance. For more information about the camps, log on to

c o n ta c t s Sports Editor: Rob Heigh

For more information or to send in news and photos: Phone: 01 651 6205


28 BLANCH Gazette 4 July 2012


athletics: stadium will greet internationals

DublinGazetteNewspapers 2013 dublin sports awards june winners


Action from last year’s thrilling Morton Games

dean carpenter Collinstown FC player Carpenter has had an impressive month, with his club side achieving a double after securing the Myles O’Neill Cup, and capped it with a call-up and appearance for the Ireland amateur side against Northern Ireland

Morton Games set to host fine field 

TEAMof the MONTH H holy family national school THE St Finian’s feeder school side have had a fine year, with eight teams representing the school, six of whom reached finals, and four of those sides taking title honours in boys and girls GAA codes, including the Cumann na mBunscol crown

FastSport Ipswich Town continue Shels’ Festival of Football Mick McCarthy’s Championship representatives Ipswich Town are the latest side to take part in the Macron Festival Of Football running through July at Shelbourne’s Tolka Park. The second match in the four game series takes place this Saturday, July 6 at 5pm, to be followed later in the month with games against SPL side Aberdeen on Saturday, July 20 at 3pm and a Leeds United XI on Monday, July 29 at 7.45pm. Tickets for each game cost €10 for adults, €7 for students and €5 for children and OAPs, and are available from or from Tolka Park on 01 837 5536.-

Athletics fans from all over the city will be converging on Morton Stadium in Santry on Wednesday, July 17 for the 2013 Morton Games, which promises to be a cavalcade of international track and field, and include the classic Morton Mile and a Ladies Mile in a total of 26 events. Fifteen London 2012 Olympians participated in last year’s event, and this year’s event will be another celebration of the sport.

Last year, the 2012 Morton Mile was won by the USA’s Will Leer in 3.56.39. A total of 10 athletes broke the fourminute barrier in a thrilling finish which had the crowd on their feet and was too close for the TV commentators to call. The ladies’ mile saw Nicole Schappert of the USA set a new stadium record for the distance, coming home first in a time of 4.30.69. Confirmed for the 2013 Morton Mile are regular visitors to Santry, Americans Jack Bolas and Craig

Bringing big smiles Graeme McDowell chips in at Our Lady’s Crumlin golf star Graeme McDowell took time

out before the Irish Open to make children feel way above par when he visited the Cardiac Unit at Our Lady’s Hospital for Sick Children, Crumlin, where he met Holly and Carol Gorey. His recent visit allowed him to see the building changes that will transform children’s time in hospital if the urgent Fix Crumlin Appeal reaches its fundraising goal. McDowell’s G-Mac Foundation donated a further $200,000 to the rebuild campaign.

Miller will be appearing in their fourth Morton Mile. They will be joined by Paul Robinson (St Coca’s) and recently confirmed Riley Master (USA). Ireland’s two-time European Cross Country Champion and European 3000m indoor bronze medallist in the ladies event, confirmed for the Mile, is Fionnuala Britton. She will lead a strong home charge against Laura Crowe and Kerry Harty while Scot Lennie Waite will look to take the title though US athletes Brie Felnagle and Debo-

rah Maier will have a say in matters. Brian Gregan, fresh from victory in the European Team Championship 1st League 400m with Irish team mates Ailis McSweeney, Amy Foster, Shauna Cannon, Kelly Proper, Jason Harvey, Anto Lieghio and Eoin Everard will all be in action for the build up to the main event, The Morton Mile. The event website will provide regular news updates and tickets for the 2013 Morton Games.

4 July 2012 BLANCH Gazette 29


Creating ability and strengthening ties


St Peregrine’s GAA club’s athletic development programme St Matthew’s movie now aims to set up players with a base ability that will last them a lifetime, according to games promotions officer Gordon Ward available to view online

 rob heigh

A windy and grey afternoon at St Peregrine’s GA A club saw their Under-16s go through an extensive training programme. To the untrained eye, it may look like a fairly routine process, but underlining the session is a strong commitment to the ongoing athletic development of their young players, a commitment that starts at a very young age level at the club. The session is being run by St Peregrine’s games promotions officer Gordon Ward, whose background and study of physical fitness and development at Setanta College have informed a programme at the club that has positive implications for their young

players, and the club as a whole. “The two big things we concentrate on in Peregrine’s is retaining players in the club and their ongoing improvement in fitness. With athletic development, the children do not tend to get injured as much, and the skills they are being asked to perform in the sport, if their physical literacy is fluent, are not going to result in injuries. “Athletic development begins at a young age with children at the club, so they have history with it when they come to a stage, around 14 or 15, when they can begin strength work in the gym,” said Gordon. “It’s something that is ongoing, starting with children in the nursery, from four years of age, right up to 16 years old. It’s

a progressive programme that has been running for around four years now.” Gordon says that the programmes that he has helped to introduce are part of an ethos that runs through the sport in the capital. “The Dublin County Board would be very encouraging in terms of physical conditioning and for GPOs to start programmes in their various clubs. As part of my studies, I’ve had to develop programmes, and encouraged the club to adopt those programmes. “I could definitely see other clubs picking up on this type of programme. If a parent sees their child getting this kind of care and attention, it is only going to encourage more children into sport, not only the club.” There is also a wider

thinking behind the athletic development programme. “At a younger age, children are not as active as they used to be. PE programmes in schools are limited. A child lunging or squatting or having lateral movement is not a given any more, and those

there was some opposition, but with some education and presentation to the parents and players, they bought into the idea, and they love it. “It definitely improves the players’ performance - I’m not saying that they will play for Dublin, but they will enjoy their sport


‘They may not play for Dublin, but they will enjoy their sport more’ - Gordon Ward


movements and skills need to be taught before they can get out on the pitch to play a game. “ The athletic development programme was not immediately accepted at the club, but Gordon has seen a buy-in to his way of thinking, which has beneficial effects. “Definitely at the start

The St Peregrine’s players in action in their training session, and, inset, GPO Gordon Ward

more because they will not pick up so many injuries. The kind of injuries that occur, like hamstring and groin injuries, can cost up to €500 to deal with, and most players will end up paying for that themselves.” There is also a positive impact beyond the GAA, according to Gordon. “There is a big crossover here. The kind of skills we teach in athletic development are generic - so if you play rugby or basketball or tennis, the skills are applicable there, too. Though we would love them to stay in GAA! “If you can get a child active at four or five, that makes a difference, and the chances of them staying involved in the club remain very high. As they get older, those starting the sport are few and far between. There is a level here for everyone, and for everyone to remain involved.”

After proving a knockout with a packed audience at the Fingal Film Festival earlier this year, Boxing Clever, a documentary about St Matthews boxing club has now been released to pay per view, with the proceeds going toward the building of a ladies’ changing room at the club. The club is currently restricted from offering membership to the growing number of women interested in the sport as they have no facilities for them. The documentary shows the positive impact the club has had on Ballyfermot since it opened its doors in 1979 and how the club continues to prove an asset to the local and wider community. Steven Murray, the award winning screen writer and director of the documentary, believes the story of the men behind the boxing club, past and present, is inspirational, and the film was described by Dave Byrne of the Fingal Film Festival as: “A great watch, insightful, funny and compelling.” The film can be seen if you go to the club website and click the Boxing Clever documentary link.

Dun Laoghaire set to host 2013 regatta event Watersports lovers from all over Dublin are gearing up to attend the 2013 Volvo Dun Laoghaire Regatta which runs this year on Dublin Bay from Thursday, July 11 to Sunday, July 14. 350 boats, including 112 visiting boats, across 25 classes and 2,500 sailors will compete in the biennial regatta event that is a celebration of sailing in the city and internationally.

In addition to the events on the water, the organisers and Dun Laoghaire town’s waterfront yacht clubs have put together an on shore programme combining the excitement of world class sailing, great food, and entertainment for all sailors, visiting and local, their families and friends and members, which can be downloaded from DownLoads/414.pdf For more information, log on to www. and www.facebook. com/dlregatta


30 BLANCH Gazette 4 July 2013



jiu jitsu: gold and silver in rome for local fighter

Ongar Chasers celebrate their debut year in D15 Ongar Chasers Basketball Club last week held their end-of-year academy tournament this Saturday from 12 noon to 3pm at Ongar Community Centre at St Benedict’s NS to celebrate the successful year for the club and their academy program, where over 80 children have enjoyed learning to play basketball. For the last year, the Ongar Chasers Youth Basketball Club community project has gone from strength to strength. At this time last year, the club had two boys’ teams, and next season will see the club fielding five boys’ and two girls’ teams in league competition. Speaking about the club’s successes, club secretary Sladjan Kutijevac said: “As of last Monday, more than 250 kids have attended at least one of our training sessions, and over 150 of them remained in as members in one of three sections of the club: boys, girls and academy. “More than 15 nationalities are represented in the club, and over 10 of our younger members are getting engaged further as coaches or referees to help. “We have been so busy getting the Ongar Chasers Youth Basketball Club community project off the ground and our modest project generated massive momentum in the area and by far exceeded any expectations we had.” The club are holding a summer basketball camp from August 19 to 23 in Phibblestown Community Centre at the CP Setanta Secondary School. The camp will run every day from 10am to 1pm, and costs €40 per child. For more information on the camp or the club in general, contact 089 415 6447 or email

Roger Dardis in pole position, claiming the gold medal at the Rome Open Championship last weekend

Double success for Dardis  peter carroll

Roger Dardis claimed a double podium last Saturday at the Rome Open Jiu Jitsu Championship, taking silver in the middle heavy brown belt bracket, before winning the absolute (all weights) division with some fantastic movement and his signature skills. Having earned his brown belt under one of the sport’s greats, Marcelo Garcia, while living in New York, the Kells man returned to Ireland this year and took up a coaching

role at Blanchardstown club, Royal Grappling Academy, alongside established Irish purple belt Paul Fox. “T he training has been great since I came back,” said Dardis after the weekend’s success. “I’m very happy with the club and I’ve been able to keep myself in competition condition.” Although many would have been delighted with two medals in a big European meeting, Dardis confessed he was disappointed with the results in the end, with a very close decision causing him

mochta’s a cut above Clonsilla side celebrate new shirt sponsor ST mochta’s FC’s Under-10 football-

ers, located in Clonsilla were delighted to announce their new sponsors last week, West End Barbers, and presented a framed shirt to the business. Pictured are Thomas Slevin, Reagan Trower and Lee Ryan from West End Barbers, and assistant manager Peter Brady. West End proprietor Barry Caesar Hunt wished the team all the best for next season.

to miss out on double gold. “I think I could’ve done better, I’m a little bit disappointed, but I’ll look to put that right in the next competition outside of Ireland, which is looking likely to be in October at the London Open,” he said. A number of Irish competitors came back from the weekend with medals, and Dardis believes that the popularity of the sport will grow in Ireland on the back of the success of the athletes abroad. “The regional scene and the community

built around the sport over here is fantastic and that’s one of the big reasons why the Irish are doing so well when we go away to compete. “Competitions over here are a lot more organised than their equivalents in the States and that allows people to focus a lot more on their matches without the stress of figuring out where you have to be at certain times. “Jiu Jitsu is a fantastic sport and a great outlet for everyone. More and more people are becoming involved with the sport in Ireland and

it’s no surprise to me because it’s a fantastic way to keep fit and practise a discipline in a stress-free environment. “It’s a sport for all shapes and sizes, you can make it work whatever your body type or level of fitness and if you haven’t tried it yet, you should really give it a go.” For more information on jiu jitsu in the Blanchardstown area, log on to where you can avail of discounted beginner rates or contact Paul on 086 8408183.

4 July 2013 BLANCH Gazette 31


Brogan points to competition as driver  

ST OLIVER Plunkett’s/ Eoghan Ruadh man Bernard Brogan says that the level of competition for places in the Dublin senior football line-up is having a huge impact this year. Speaking after their 4-16 to 1-9 win over Kildare last Sunday, Bro-

gan said it is keeping the former Player of the Year hugely motivated. “Just look at the competition; I can’t even get 50 minutes as the young lads coming into the team are pushing on. The competition in training matches is unbelievable. It was a great team performance. “Kildare came out of

the traps and so we had to take a good look at ourselves. We stopped their flow and got a few scores on the board and I think the goal just before half-time knocked a bit of the stuffing out of them. “The first 10 minutes of the second half, we got on top and pulled away from there,” said Brogan.

Club Noticeboard st brigid’s THERE we r e g r e at l e a g u e a n d championship wins last week for our senior, AFL3, AFL4, AFL5, AFL 7

An important document on the

and minor B footballers and minor

penultimate stage of our develop-


ment plan is now in the club and on

The final club nursery for four -to

camogie: st brigid’s host over 150 children

Well done to all involved in 2013 camogie mini-leagues last week.

the website.

seven-year-olds is this Saturday

There is a new clothing collection

from 9.30am to 11am. New members

point in Russell Park, please drop

and families welcome.

down any old clothes you have.

The nursery resumes after the

Well done to all our Dublin rep-

summer break on August 24. Con-

resentative on what was a great

tact Paul on 087 915 4748 or email

weekend. Keep an eye on website

for ticket information.

This week’s Lotto draw will be in

Fr Tom Russell Jnr celebrates the

Myo’s on Friday, July 5. The jackpot

50th anniversary of his ordination

remains at €15,000 and the reserve

with a Mass in St Brigid’s Church on

will be €4,400.

July 14, all welcome.

The club shop is open every Fri-

There is a new club loyalty card

day from 7 to 8pm and every Sat-

with Captain America’s and Waga-

urday morning from 10.30am to 12

mama, see website for more.

noon. Our Inter 2 footballers are

Finally, make sure you check out

hosting a table quiz in the Vineyard

the latest brilliant classes on offer

this Friday, July 5; teams of four

in our TWIST HPC. Open to every-

cost €40 and all are welcome.


st peregrine’s THE junior B footballers have their

the in the Dublin Puc Fada on Friday

Sheridan Cup final this Thursday at

last, and good luck to her when she

7.30pm in Galtymore Road v Good

represents club and county in the

Counsel at 7.30pm. All support wel-

national skills test in Limerick.

come. It was a great weekend for Dublin St Brigid’s mini-leagues at Russell Park were a great success and bode well for the future of the code at the club

Mini-leagues see magnificent turnout 

County flags flew in the summer sun when over 150 girls took part in St Brigid’s Camogie mini-leagues last week. The girls, aged five to 13, played 32 games over two evenings, with St Brigid’s home turf Russell Park in full festival mode, with flags flying and pitches in pristine condition, and families gathered on the touchlines to cheer on the teams. The aim of the event was to get children out playing, and organising committee member

Clodagh Rodgers said: “The number of children who registered exceeded all of our expectations. Parents realise that children need to be active in order to develop physically and sport is such a fun way of getting exercise. It was just great seeing the kids enjoying the games .” Speaking after the event, camogie chairman Barry Lyons said he was delighted with the response the event had brought from the local community and club members. “The event was so successful that we have

committed to run it again next year. St Brigid’s GAA club was voted camogie club of the year by the Dublin Camogie County Board and this in no doubt was as a result of the incredible work that the club puts into developing the game. “The facilities and support available in St Brigid’s are a great asset to the local community. We have a very active group of committed mentors and camogie is thriving in Russell Park as more and more children are taking up the sport. “Our GPO, Paul O’Brien, is working

closely with the local community. He is fully committed to making sport a lifestyle choice for many young people. In addition, our camogie development director Brendan Skehan’s player pathway support programme is putting St Brigid’s Camogie up there with the best clubs in the country. ” St Brigid’s nursery runs ever y Saturday during school term from 9.30am to 11am. For further information visit or call Clodagh Rodgers on 0868 596992.

The club will be celebrating The Gathering, details to be confirmed.

GAA with great wins for the football-

The club lotto was not won. Num-

ers and hurlers. Ticket orders for

bers drawn were 17, 18, 23 and26.

both Leinster finals to Mary ASAP.

Next week’s jackpot is €6,400.

Well done to the U-11s and all who

If anybody has anything for club-

climbed the Sugar Loaf last week-

notes please email robert.keogh82@

end. Big congratulations to the U-12

girls and their mentors who won Division 2 of the Ger Canavan tournament on Saturday; also well done to Karla Whelan who finished third in

Bingo runs on Wednesdays at 8.30pm, this week’s jackpot is €800. Entertainment in the club this Saturday from The Mutts.

westmanstown/garda There were three games last week

Your coaches are delighted with the

with the juniors suffering two narrow

work and commitment from every-

defeats and the intermediates coming

one, including parents, all season and

from behind to earn a well-deserved

hope to see as many U-8s as possible


in our Cul Camp on July 8 where they

The juniors lost in the championship at home to Kilmacud Crokes by two points on a score of 1-12 to 1-10. Best of luck to Kilmacud in the next round.

will have great fun while learning the joys of Gaelic football and hurling. The U-9s hosted Thomas Davis and won while the U-10s played Na Fianna

The Juniors then also lost away in

and lost narrowly. Well done to the

the league to Ballinteer St John’s on

U-11 players who played two tough

Sunday morning by 0-12 to 1-6.

challenge matches v Hollywood from

The Intermediates turned in a great

Co Wicklow, then had to climb a moun-

second half performance to earn a

tain six pitches tall. Well done lads, and

draw in the league against Scoil Ui

thanks to all the parents for helping

Chonaill, finishing on a score of 0-12


to 1-9. Westmanstown Gaels U-8s hurlers narrowly lost to a strong Cuala team.

The Gaels has a great day at the St Mochta’s Parish Picnic Funday on Saturday in Luttrellstown Castle.

32 BLANCH Gazette 4 July 2013