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Fun, fun, fun with Skoda’s Fabia Monte Carlo







INSIDE: A local insight into life in Haiti after HERE WE GO-HO-HO: Santa and the the quake P8-9 Gazette team look back at 2011 Page 3

Let there be light: Festive fever hits local homes Swimming: Magic Murphy lands eight national medals Page 32

THERE was a notable increase

in the number of local residents pulling out all the stops in decorating their homes this year. Maybe the recent post budget doom and gloom inspired them to make an extra effort, and they did. This picture shows just one of many fantastically lit homes bringing festive cheer to the community. Picture: Una Williams

Full Gallery on Page 10

Sports Awards: December’s nominees are announced Page 29

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

Dumping spiralling out of control – Cllr Call for huge fines for any illegal littering


“HUGE draconian fines” should be imposed on anyone caught dumping or littering in Fingal. That’s according to Labour Councillor Tom Kelleher, who said that the dumping in the county, particularly rural

areas, was spiralling out of control. The councillor said he now wants to see higher fines brought in as part of efforts to tackle the problem. “I don’t think we are doing enough. There is a huge amount of dumping in rural Fingal and I suspect it is going to get worse when the waivers

disappear. It galls me to think people can drive out to Rolestown and dump 10 to 12 bags and the council are going to pick them up. “There should be huge fines, draconian fines for anyone found dumping or littering,” said the councillor. Full Story on Page 4

2 SWORDS GAZETTE 22 & 29 December 2011



Food appeal THE Sword’s Lions Club Christmas Food Appeal has seen a record number of food donations this year with the charity reporting a 35% increase on collections. Over the first two weekends of the month, the local club received a record 46 trolley loads of foodstuffs during this year’s Annual Christmas Food Appeal at local supermarkets JCs, Superquinn and Dunnes Stores. The food is distributed evenly through the four Swords SVP conference areas.

Graduation: A proud day for Darren NEWLY qualified graduate Darren O’Reilly, from Swords, is pictured receiving his award from Bernadette Costello FCA, President of Accounting Technicians Ireland. Darren recently completed his final year examinations and work experience requirements and graduated among an overall class of 284 new members. Accounting technicians are qualified accounting professionals who work at all levels of finance. They can work in all types of organisations and are widely employed throughout the public sector, industry and commerce and in private accounting practices.

Deferral of Metro North won’t affect Plan Q MIMI MURRAY

THE Fingal Development Plan will not need to be altered following the deferral of the Metro North project, Fingal County Council has said. Fianna Fail councillor Darragh Butler, had asked the council to report on the implications for Fingal and the Fingal Development Plan as a result of the Government’s recent decision to put the light rail system on hold. Responding to Cllr Butler, the council said: “The Metro North project has not been cancelled. Due to the current economic circumstances it has been deferred pending a review in 2015. “Metro North remains as a Government transpor tation policy objective and is also included in the Draft Transport Strategy 2011-2030 prepared by the National Transport Authority. “It is critical to the delivery of other national policy objectives, which include the sustainable development of the Dublin region “The Fingal Devel-

opment Plan does not require to be altered as it is appropriate and correct that the Plan continues to reflect the importance of Metro North in providing for the sustainable planning and development of the county in accordance with national policy and guidelines. “It is acknowledged that the Metro may not be delivered within the

original timeframe and, as such, exploring the most appropriate shortterm development forms and scales within certain parts of the Metro Corridor is taking place on a daily basis through the development management process and through the preparation of LAPs such as the Dardistown/MetroPark (HT) LAP,” the council said.

Fianna Fail councillor Darragh Butler

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GREETINGS A look back at 2011, and looking forward to 2012

Merry Christmas from the Gazette Q CORMAC CURTIS

THE team at the Gazette were busy this week putting together the very best in local news, features, sports and picture coverage, to give our readers the best possible insight into what is happening in your local community over the Christmas season. At the same time, our commercial team were bringing the best value in local advertising to the businesses of Dublin – the kind of businesses that know our industry-leading readership and circulation figures have been approved by the Audit Bureau of Circulation. As regular readers will know, the primary focus of the Gazette is local coverage. We started this year by bringing further news of the “big freeze”, and how it was affecting life in our local communities. As the capital’s residents did their best to cope with the extended extreme weather conditions, the Gazette reported on how local councils, transport services and emergency services, as well as volunteer groups, all coped with the added pressures of frozen roads, interrupted services, and shortages of salt and grit. As the freeze gave way to thaw, and 2011 unfolded, it became clear that our political landscape was changing dramatically. The prospect of further austerity and lack of growth meant Fianna Fail faced an impossible battle, as the electorate prepared to send a clear message to a Government that had left the people feeling betrayed, let down and completely abandoned by its public representatives. As a result, the General Election brought with it the end of an era for Fianna Fail, as well as the complete decimation of the Green Party. Hand-in-hand with these changes came the rise of the Left, as many

Left-leaning councillors took seats in a number of Dublin constituencies. Moving in to springtime, Dublin entered a period of near jubilation, with the historic visits of Queen Elizabeth II and US President, Barack Obama. After a scorching April, our summer weather let us down. Dublin experienced more extreme weather in autumn, as record rainfall figures brought the capital to a flooded standstill. What is encouraging is that, despite a mixed bag of news in a year that saw little or no improvement to the country’s economic standing, our local com-

munities remain as vibrant and exciting as ever. Local community groups, schools, sports clubs and societies have not lost their appetite for activity, and we at the Gazette thrive on their enthusiasm. The Gazette is an open resource for the community, and we would like to thank all of those who involve us, interact with us, and those who go as far as to write stories, take pictures and take the time to contribute material to these pages. If it weren’t for the efforts of these people, it would make it impossible to produce the kind of

material that highlights what is bright, beautiful and unique about our area. So, from the whole team at the Gazette, let me extend our very best wishes to you and your families this Christmas season and wish you a happy and healthy 2012.

The Gazette team wish all our readers a very merry Christmas Picture: Anita Ward

4 SWORDS GAZETTE 22 & 29 December 2011


Work on new schools to start in 2012 Q LAURA WEBB

THERE was good news on the schools front this week following the announcement by the Department of Education that construction work on four schools in Dublin North has been scheduled to get underway in the new year as part of a €430m education infrastructure plan. The announcement was made by Education Minister Ruairi Quinn. Of the 56 schools listed nationwide, four schools are located in the Dublin North area. Listed for an extension/refurbishment is Thornleigh Educate Together National School, in Swords, and Ardgillen Community College, while Holywell Educate Together, also in Swords, will receive a new school and Scoil Chormaic Community Primary School, Balbriggan, will also get a new school building. We l c o m i n g t h e announcement, Labour Party TD for Dublin North Brendan Ryan said: “I welcome any work being committed to north County Dublin by this Government to meet the chronic under investment in our schools over the past decade. However, there is still a lot of investment needed in Dublin North with schools all over the region in need of

new buildings, refurbishment, extensions and renovations. “The issue of prefabs still blights many schools all over the region, from St Sylvester’s junior school in Malahide to Brackenstown National School in Swords, right up to St Molaga’s in Balbriggan, with many more schools in between. There should be a separate stream of money within the Department of Education to address the whole prefab issue. This will be a priority of mine within the New Year when I will be raising this in the Dail. “I have also visited schools such as Loreto Swords, a post-primary school which is so oversubscribed that a lottery system is needed to assign places for incoming firstyear students. Loreto Swords is currently on the list for an extension in order to meet the need of the local area. “I continue to pressure the Minister on behalf of many schools up and down Fingal which are in need of work. I welcome the announcement that four projects are going ahead in 2012. “However, much work needs to be done in the coming years if the infrastructure deficit in our schools is to be tackled effectively,” Deputy Ryan said.

FINGAL Dumping is spiralling out of control, says Councillor

Call for ‘huge’ fines for anyone littering Q MIMI MURRAY

“HUGE draconian fines” should be imposed on anyone caught dumping or littering in Fingal. That’s according to Labour councillor Tom Kelleher, who said this week that the dumping in the county, particularly rural areas, was spiralling out of control. Cllr Kelleher said he now wants to see higher fines brought in as part of efforts to tackle the problem. “I don’t think we are doing enough. There is a huge amount of dumping in rural Fingal and I suspect it is going to get worse when the waivers disappear. “It galls me to think people can drive out to Rolestown and dump 10 to 12 bags and the council are going to pick them up. “Or, if they leave

them inside gates on landowner’s property, they have to clean it up and not all are in the whole of their health. It is unsightly and unhealthy. There should be huge fines, draconian fines for anyone found dumping or littering,” said the councillor. Responding to Cllr Kelleher, a spokesperson for Fingal County Council said that litter wardens were “assigned to the Swords/Balbriggan area to carry out routine patrols in their respective areas and, where necessary, respond to complaints to try to collect evidence sufficient to issue a fine”. “Currently a person can be charged an onthe-spot fine of €150 for leaving or throwing litter in a public place. “There is a maximum fine of €3,000 if they are convicted of a litter offence in the District

Labour councillor, Tom Kelleher


‘It galls me to think people can drive out to Rolestown and dump 10 to 12 bags and the council are going to pick them up’


Court. “A person convicted of a litter offence may also be required by the court to pay the local authority’s costs and expenses in investigating the offence and bringing the prosecution. “Annually, the coun-

cil receives in excess of 2,500 litter complaints countywide, generally by telephone, including the Litter Freephone. All complaints are investigated,” the council said. “Staff from the Inspectorate Division recently attended a workshop,

which included representatives from all four Dublin authorities, Meath and Wicklow County Council, to discuss a tiered approach to fines from €75 to €175, depending on the level of the offence. “The recommendations arising from the workshop were forwarded to the Department of Environment Community and Local Government for consideration,” the council said.

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LANDFILL Dublin councils drop waste plan as the cost of Residents’ victory following 14-year campaign THE decision taken by the four Dublin local authorities not to press ahead with plans for a controversial landfill at Nevitt in Lusk, marked the end to a long-running campaign by local residents and politicians deeply opposed to the proposed development over the past 14 years. The proposed landfill had deeply angered many members of the local community, who are also opposed to plans for a major sewage treatment plant in their area. This week, a spokesperson for the Lusk Waste Watch action group, representing residents opposed to the development of the plant, said that both projects were remnants of the “heady days of the Celtic Tiger” and were simply “no longer realistic”. “Fingal County Council spent a fortune on forcing the landfill on a small community, despite widespread opposition. At least they have now realised that the project was a white elephant and never made sense. Let’s hope they have the sense to see that the proposed sewage treatment plant is in the same category. Both projects are a case of ‘it seemed like a good idea at the time’ but things have changed, and what might have made sense in the heady days of the Celtic Tiger is no longer realistic.” The proposed landfill, which has already cost FCC over €30m, was scrapped after the four local authorities had to make a decision on whether they should go ahead with compulsory purchase orders. The council said they reached the decision “in light of changed circumstances”, adding that the decision to proceed would have incurred “major costs of up to €45 million, which, in today’s market and in light of evolving national policy, could not now be justified.”

Scrapping of a super dump hailed as ‘correct decision’ Politicians are welcoming news on the Nevitt landfill U-turn, writes MIMI MURRAY THE abandoning of plans to develop the controversial landfill at Nevitt, in Lusk, by Fingal County Council and the three other Dublin local authorities, was welcomed by local politicians this week, with Labour TD Brendan Ryan describing it as the “correct decision”. Speaking to the Gazette, Deputy Ryan said he was “relieved to hear that Fingal County Council has abandoned plans for a proposed super dump in the Nevitt area of North County Dublin”. “There were many environmental reasons why this proposal should never have even gotten off the ground; however the primary reason was the location of an aquifer beneath the proposed landfill site. The potential for contamination of the surrounding countryside, which relies very heavily on horticulture and the growing of produce, was too great for such a landfill site to go ahead. “I was proud to stand shoulder to shoulder with the local people in oppo-

sition to this proposal over the last number of years and I share with them relief that Fingal County Council have dropped the project. It is a shame that it has taken 14 years to come to this decision as the past 14 years has been a time of great uncertainty for many people in the area. “Whilst the people of north County Dublin can welcome this news, it comes at a time when the region is faced with yet another proposed waste facility. The waste water treatment plant proposed for north County Dublin has prompted an even greater public reaction than we saw to the Nevitt proposal. Again, I stand with the people of north County Dublin against another massive project which has the potential to compromise the environment of our region.” Meanwhile, Socialist Party TD Clare Daly, who has for years opposed the development said: “This is a monumental decision by the council. It is, firstly, a testament to the


‘This is a monumental decision by the council. It is a testament to the tremendous work over 14 years of the Nevitt Landfill Action Group’ --------------------------------------------------------

tremendous work over 14 years of the Nevitt Landfill Action Group, who fought tirelessly against this development, by taking the issue all the way to Europe and though concerted political campaigning here in Fingal. “For years, I have raised this issue, in the council and in the Dail. I think it is important to say that it was obvious for a long time that this project was never economically or environmentally viable and, because of this, there are serious questions to be answered by the council. Over €30 million has been spent acquiring land, a significant portion of which contained a landfill site, which will now have to be cleaned up at taxpayer’s expense. “Now, as we have raised before, there needs to be

an independent investigation into this project and the money that has been spent on it, it is too much money and too serious of an issue. Socialist Party Councillor for Swords, Eugene Coppinger, will continue to work on this by pushing for an independent investigation to take place. “The overturning of the CPOs on the homes of residents near where the dump would have been is a particularly welcome development coming out of this announcement. It is a victory and an immense relief for people in Nevitt who can spend Christmas knowing that they will not now be forced to leave their homes during the next year.” The decision was also welcomed by Fine Gael TD for Dublin North,

Nevitt, in north county Dublin, was the area identified as a location for a controversial landfill. The decision not to proceed with the plan was welcomed this week.

Alan Farrell, but he also expressed disappointment at the cost that had been incurred throughout the process saying: “I welcome this decision on behalf of the residents in this part of Lusk who were devastated at the consequences of having a 210-hectare landfill site on their doorstep. However, at a price of €32.7 million to the taxpayer, it is worth querying why a revaluation did not take place at an earlier stage. “Fingal County Council have spent €32.7 million on this project over the past 14 years. Financially, this should have been reexamined at the beginning of the economic crisis when we could have avoided such a large cost to the taxpayer, and the stress and worry of families in the local area. “All major projects, such as this landfill site, and the proposed sewage plant in Dublin North should have been revaluated four years ago by the Department when it was clear that the country was

hit with a crippling financial crisis. “The financial crisis began in 2008. It was then that there should have been a proper revaluation of all major infrastructure developments that were still at early stages. In Dublin North alone, this is the second instance of taxpayer’s money being thrown away on projects that have no hope of being realised in the near future; €30 million was spent buying land for Thornton Hall and €32.7 million misspent on the Lusk proposal. Why is it only now, when we have a government that is finally fully accountable, that the authorities have woken up to the reality of the financial crisis? “I have been engaging with the Minister for the Environment in relation to the proposed sewage plant in Dublin North, and I am calling on both the Department, and on Fingal County Council to ensure that taxpayers’ money is not being wasted on another project that we can ill afford.”

22 & 29 December 2011 SWORDS GAZETTE 7

compulsory purchase orders reach an estimated 造45million

8 SWORDS GAZETTE 22 & 29 December 2011


Reduce, reuse and recycle MORE household waste is set to be generated over the festive season than any other time of the year. That’s according to the Environmental Protection Agency, which is urging everyone in Fingal to reduce, reuse and recycle this Christmas. Speaking to the Gazette, Jonathan Derham, from the Agency said: “We’d like to remind people that, by keeping some useful waste prevention ideas in mind, we can all make cost savings and give to each other without giving to landfills this season. “By following these tips from the EPA over the Christmas period, and by making these habits part of our New Year’s resolutions, we can all contribute to a greener future. This is not just about recycling, it is about preventing waste across a range of activities. By not generating waste, we eliminate the need to handle, transport, treat and dispose of it. “In the run-up to Christmas remember to defrost your freezer, it will work more efficiently and create more space to store leftover food. “For leftovers, Stop Food Waste and Wicklow County Council have developed a wonderful recipe guide for the 12 days of Christmas on their website, “Many people will receive Christmas presents of new electrical and electronic equipment from toys to mobile phones, computers, coffee makers, drills, hairdryers or televisions. “Their older model will then have to be disposed of so remember to recycle waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE).” Fingal County Council can direct you to your nearest recycling facilities, or check out http:// w w w. r e p a k . i e / r e c y cling_facilities.php for a list of bring banks and recycling centres.

PEOPLE An insight into the lives of Haitian people

A unique insight into life in Haiti Local teacher Jacinta McGuane brings us a personal account of day-to-day life as a volunteer T H E J a n u a r y 2 010 earthquake devastated the country of Haiti. This week, Swords resident and local teacher Jacinta McGuane, gives a unique and personal account of her dayto-day life at the Nos Petits Freres et Soeurs orphanage where she is currently working as a volunteer on a special needs programme. “We live in Kay St Helene among 456 or phans, carers and support staff. “The home is directed by Sr Altagrace, a strongwilled Salesian nun. The school is directed by Sr Monet, who takes great pride in educating all 600 students, 200 of whom come to school from the surrounding countryside to get an education of the highest standard, and, of course, a large healthy lunch every day before they return to their work on the farms. “On Saturday morning last, we were very surprised to see two new arrivals to the home. “This time it was not visitors from overseas, nor was it new children, the children were amazed at the new arrivals – two tiny kid goats. “The funding for the goats came from Mission Cara via Viatores Cristi, the same funding which supports our classrooms and special needs programmes here in Kenscoff. The children in our class are

responsible for helping with the care of the goats, pigs and gardening within the home in conjunction with the gardening staff of the home. “During break-times, the children in our class are responsible for guarding the kid goats and they help the gardeners to move the goats to and from the grazing to shelter every afternoon. “The children in our class have a variety of educational difficulties, with ages varying from eight years of age to 17 years. “There are two girls and 12 boys. Many of them were abandoned as malnourished babies or toddlers. “Our afternoons include taking the children in Kay Christine to play football and basketball in their wheelchairs, working as classroom assistants with the visually impaired Art teacher, Christian, or with another Irish volunteer, Liz Lawn. “They also help out in the home’s kitchen, gardens or the depot. Living at 2,000 m above sea level has its advantages and its disadvantages. “We do not have the scorching dry heat of Port-au-Prince, but we have the often very cold mountain air, waking out into the clouds can make for a chilly start to the morning. “From 6:30 am every

Tap taps are brightly painted buses that serve as share taxis in Haiti

morning you can hear the children chat and sing as they make their way along the mountain tracks below us to school, wearing the cleanest uniforms you will ever see, and with such great pride. They know that they are some of the lucky few children whose families can spare them from the hardship of the mountain gardens. “Next school year, it may be their turn to stay at home, planting, weeding and harvesting their crops. “Also, making the weekly trek down the mountain with their produce stacked high on their heads to be early to

the markets of Port-auPrince or Petion-ville to sell their produce. “T hey buy necessary supplies and then make the long trek back up the mountain if they cannot spare the change to pay for a ride on the tap-taps. “Since my first visit to Haiti in January for the first anniversar y of the earthquake, and its subsequent tremo r s w h i c h w r e a ke d havoc in the country, the countr y and the spirit of the people has gained momentum and strength. “It is evident in the large tracts of land which have been tended to by hand, the people

proudly carrying their large loads on their heads, the smiling faces as the children coming running down the hill to the school every morning, even after a long trek to get here. “The majority of the tents on the route up the mountain have been replaced by concrete block homes, all to be proudly decorated for Christmas by decree of President Martelly. “Meet some of the children who put a big smile on my face and warm my heart everyday; Joseph, of the soft hands, who loves sitting in the sunshine watching the clouds go by, taking you for walks and

laughing; Cleavens, who loves football and likes to practise his English with you every time he sees you; Yvonne and her handbag, she loves to give rib-cr ushing hugs and tease the goat man; Gladimir, who has been promoted from student to my classroom assistant, he has great patience and wants to improve his English. “He knits scarves to sell to the visitors who come to visit and forget their winter woollies; Manelson takes the children in Kay Christine for walks.” You can check Nos Petits Freres et Soeurs out at or

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whose post quake spirit has gained momentum and strength

The children were delighted to see two new arrivals

The school takes great pride in educating all 600 students

Enjoying a bit of hair care

Helping out in the kitchen

Getting an education of the highest standard

10 SWORDS GAZETTE 22 & 29 December 2011

CHRISTMAS Locals light up their homes and businesses

Illuminating festive cheer VERY year at this time local businesses and homes make huge efforts into putting up decorations and lights to spread a little bit of Christmas cheer. Our photographers were on hand to capture a number of these around the


area. Despite the doom and gloom, locals weren’t going to let the recent tough budget dampen their holiday spirits and were only to determined to make even more of an effort to bring a bit of light and happiness into the lives of people in the community.


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GazetteBEAUTY BEAUTY Brides can win big, it’s wedding time! AZETTE Group Newspapers has teamed up with T h e We d d i n g Journal Show to offer lucky readers a chance to win a pair of VIP tickets, and 10 pairs of runners-up tickets , to the Wedding Journal Show, Citywest Complex, Dublin from January 13 until January 15, 2012. The Wedding Journal Show 2012, in association with Ireland AM, will feature over 450 exhibitors and provide brides and grooms alike with a one-stop-wedding shop, together with all the inspiration they need to plan their big day. From venues and flowers to dresses and cars, the


Wedding Journal Show has it all – and all under one roof! As always, the Wedding Journal Show is pulling out all the stops for their 2012 exhibition. Celebrating all that’s Irish, there will be an Irish Bridal Designers Area to help you find that dream gown, as well as Wedding Journal’s unrivalled international catwalk show, which takes place three times daily. This exclusive event provides a rare opportunity to see a selection of designer wedding gowns, bridesmaids, mothers of the bride and groomswear, some of which have never been seen in Ire-

land before! Whether you are looking for the perfect dress, suit hire, an exclusive venue, flowers, stationery, entertainment, cars, photographer or a delicious cake, every aspect of your wedding planning experience will be covered. What’s more – everyone who buys a ticket to the show – either online or on the door – will be entered into a prize draw to win a wedding work €25,000! For more information, or to book your discounted tickets, visit See below for full details on this incredible competition.

Brides can bag a bargain at the Wedding Journal Show in Citywest next month. See our incredible competition below for your chance to win VIP passes for the inspirational event

WE HAVE 146,000* READERS EACH WEEK *based on standard industry measurements


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GazetteNUTRITION NUTRITION GOT A STORY? Call our NEWS TEAM on 60 10 240 or email

Party time is upon us so, to make sure you keep healthy over the festive period, check out our guide

Surviving the holiday season LEILA JOHARI

THE holiday season has arrived, party time is upon us. We want to look good in that little black dress but all that fun and feasting can take its toll on our bodies. Between late nights, eating and drinking, it is no wonder our bodies find it hard to keep functioning effectively. Research has shown that the average person consumes up to 7,000 calories on Christmas day, and don’t forget about the festive goodies we feast on the weeks before. Christmas is a special time of year we want to enjoy so here are some tips to keep healthy and keep our spirits up!

Don’t go to a party hungry Eat a wholesome breakfast and lunch on the day so that you are not starving when you arrive at the party. Porridge in the morning is ideal followed by a lunch of lentil soup and

whole-grain bread.

Portion Control Allow yourself to try the festive goodies you don’t have during the year but opt for small portions, this way you can try a bit of everything. Make food swaps and limit high-fat foods • Choose open-topped mince pies to reduce the amount of pastry • Serve whole-grain bread sticks with salsa instead of potato crisps and sour cream dip • Swap ice cream for fresh fruit sorbet • Swap salted nuts and chocolates for unsalted nuts and dried fruit dipped in dark chocolate • Ser ve marinaded chicken, beef and fish instead of breaded versions • Avoid the egg nog as this is made with sugar and cream! Choose your drink carefully Instead of beer, cider

and Bailey’s tr y dr y wine, Bloody Marys or spirits with diet mixer, which has fewer calories. Choose organic drinks where possible, as they have less additives, sweeteners and chemicals. Don’t forget that people who are overweight gain weight more easily when they consume alcohol. Drink plenty of water to rehydrate your body and avoid a hangover. Don’t let others refill your glass and only top up when your glass is empty.

morning is unbearable, there are some cures that may help. Fried Breakfast: Yep, believe it or not this is the one time a fried breakfast should be on the menu. Fried foods such as eggs, bacon, mushrooms

that tiredness. Fresh Fruit Smoothie: This will provide Vitamin C which helps the liver to process the last of the alcohol and the liquid content helps you rehydrate. A glass of warm water with freshly squeezed


‘Research has shown that the average person consumes up to 7,000 calories on Christmas day, and don’t forget about the festive goodies we feast on the weeks before’


Holiday Hangover The main symptoms of a hangover are a banging headache and extreme fatigue. Alcohol robs your brain of water resulting in your brain shrinking from the inside of your skull, giving you that throbbing pain. This is best avoided but, if the glare of the sunlight and the crashing sound of cutlery in the kitchen the next

and toast contain lots of salt and amino acids. Your body needs salt after weeing and sweating so much as a result of alcohol, which is a diuretic. The amino acids help to get the liver back on track after it has worked hard to expel the alcohol. A big breakfast will boost your glucose, helping you shake off

lemon juice and grated root ginger flushes out the digestive system and a bowl of pure porridge with mixed berries and cinnamon will stimulate digestion. Finally, get out, get moving and get some fresh air. Take the dog for a walk to look at the Christmas lights and soak up some more of that festive atmosphere.

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GazetteMUSIC MUSIC FastTunes with Radio Nova’s Dee Woods X FACTOR, Glee, Justin Bieber...somewhere there’s a production line spitting out shiny, singing puppets to destroy the brains and ears of young people. Why not give the gift of real music this Christmas? Some of this year’s best albums make great stocking fillers. The Foo Fighters generated earth tremors at a gig in New Zealand recently; see if you can do the same with their great album, Wasting Light, from earlier this year — your neighbours would love you for it! Red Hot Chili Peppers’ I’m With You will get you in the mood for next year’s gig, as will Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds, with Noel announced as support for RHCP. Or, and here’s a few words I never thought would be in the same sentence, Pearl Jam leader Eddie Vedder’s subtle and lilting Ukelele Songs. The Chinese said 2011 was the year of the rabbit. 2012 should definitely be the year of the gig. Huge acts are gracing our shores next year, including The Boss, Bruce Springsteen, who will bring his E Street Band back to the RDS, albeit without the master of sax, the late Clarence Clemons, who died earlier this year. Croker will be the setting for the Red Hot Chili Peppers with support from Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds, while Van Morrison and Tom Petty both have gigs lined up at The O2. Rock n’ Roll on the New Year! Billy Joel may be off Bono’s Christmas card list. He told music fans in Massachusetts last week that when he was at a U2 concert in New York, he found another band under the stage adding to their live sound. I think he may have found what U2 were looking for... Listen to Dee Woods from Radio Nova every weeknight from 7pm to 12am on 100.3FM


MRU ready to listen to the new breed? IF YOU turn on national radio at any time of the day, you will likely hear Rhianna, Coldplay or whatever it was that won The X Factor, all of which have the financial backing of major record labels. But what becomes of our Irish home-grown t a l e n t ? R i g h t n ow, according to ukairplaychar, the Irish Radio Airplay Chart consists of a top 10 list of artists who all are international. According to the website, the top 10 list was compiled over 99.7% of the general audience in Ireland. If 99.7% of the general public are currently listening to international artists in Ireland, it means an industry rich with talented musicians don’t have an opportunity to create a platform for themselves and get to the level they truly deserve. However, local artists have now a voice in the media. Music Review Unsigned (MRU) was set up in 2006 by Ballyfermot man, Trevor Halpin. The website reviews unsigned musicians from all over the world, and has set up a social side to their site, attracting many unsigned artists to set up profiles for free and share their music and get reviews from MRU users.

Dave Duggan, David Spain (WDAR), Keith McLoughlin supporting Music Review Unsigned

The website is involved with local r a d i o s t a t i o n , We s t Dublin Access Radio (WDAR) 96FM, which runs a weekly char t show every Thursday at 4pm. They also play all the latest unsigned music on the show. One of the ideas behind putting on such a show was to give more airtime to local talent. Keith McLoughlin, a local radio presenter with West Dublin Access Radio 96fm and Dublin South FM, is on the front line in the battle to create this platform for many artists. “I have been going to gigs and watching unsigned acts for

many years, and I go home feeling buzzed by watching new talent,” said Keith. “But when I turn on the radio, all I can think is why are these artists not getting the recognition they deserve?” For almost six years, Music Review Unsigned has quietly built a strong following in Ireland and now around the world. With over 1.5 million views per month on their website, together with an online magazine that is published every month, the company has now become a staple in the Irish music industry, and has given many artists another platform to showcase their music.

David Duggan, online design editor for musicreviewunsigned said: “We could blame it on the government not putting proper legislation in place to force commercial stations to play unsigned music, but if we have a strong s t r u c t u r e t o m a ke musicians and bands aware of the financial and bureaucratic system that exists in the Irish music industry, we could see a 50/50 share of listenership in Ireland for existing and unsigned acts.” Trevor Halpin, the editor of MRU, is equally enthusiastic about the site’s potential. “It could be many years before such art-

ists as The Barley Mob, Autonomous I, T he Slick Hippy’s and many more local acts reach the ears of the general public on prime-time radio. “We should be trying to put the proper infrastructure into the Irish music scene where our artists could work alongside promoters, venues and industr y insiders to build the knowledge that would help new acts to succeed. “If we were honest, money can buy you success, and a number one single or album, but we know the real listeners would prefer to hear real Irish home-grown talent on their radios.”

22 & 29 December 2011 GAZETTE 17


Brought to you by Miriam Kerins of the DSPCA


Support the DSPCA this Christmas HIS Christmas it’s business as usual for the good folk at Ireland’s oldest and largest animal welfare charity, the Dublin SPCA and our wonderful staff and volunteers are all bracing themselves, not just for the cold snap, because, let’s face it, the conditions are practically arctic up here in the Dublin mountains, but for the surge in the many rescue requests we’ll no doubt receive. Last year, the Dublin SPCA helped in excess of 4,400 animals, an amazing feat when you realise it costs us €2m to run the shelter and we do all of this without Government funding; depending heavily upon donations from kind members of the public. So, while most of you will be opening your presents and tucking into the turkey and ham, our frontline staff will be on full alert, helping animals in need. And, even though we all adore Christmas at the shelter, animal welfare, just as it is every other day of the year, remains our top priority. However, the great part is we arrive at work to cheerful barks, luscious licks and energetic tail wags and every animal gets their visit from Santa, who puts lots of animalfriendly treats and toys into their stockings… now, how many of you reading this gets to experience that type of yuletide pleasure? How lucky are we? So, in order to help rescued animals and support the country’s favourite charity this holiday season, take a quick look at my hints below.


A few coppers This yuletide, designate a day where co-workers, family members, schoolmates, etc., donate their small change to the Dublin SPCA. Make it a Puurrrfect

Christmas We’re always looking for foster families to socialise our cats and kittens throughout the year. Why not become a “feline friend” this Christmas and give a cat a home over festive season. New Year/New You Throw a New Year’s Eve party at your house and ask guests to make a resolution to become more animal friendly in 2012. Adopt the Perfect Partner Visit us and adopt your forever friend. We have lots of wonderful animals, all deserving good homes, just waiting for their new families to love and cherish them. Our adoption consultants are all expert at placing the right animal with the right family using their unique, “meet your match” programme.

Animal welfare remains the DSPCA’s top priority even on Christmas Day

Go Online: www. The Dublin SPCA’s gift shop has lots of gifts for this holiday season, from Christmas cards to wrapping paper, from 2012 calendars to cute, cuddly teddies, complete with full veterinary scrubs, from stationary to novelty mugs and aprons, etc.,

You could even Sponsor a Pet by going online at and sponsoring one of our much-deserving shelter animals as a goodwill gift for a friend or family member.

A Symbolic Gift Gesture: Why not support us

by becoming a monthly member? By donating a small amount each month, you could provide our charity with a sustainable income that will help us give sick, Injured, cruelly treated, abandoned and forgotten animals a happy ending. For example: If you donate €5 per month you will enable us to buy vaccines for 30 dogs and cats. If you donate €9 per month you will help us provide special milk to bottle feed 40 orphaned kittens. If you donate €21 per month, or more, this will qualify for tax relief,

which means your annual gift will be increased from 20-42% (depending on your tax bracket) at no additional cost to you. If you donate €32 per month you will save a life. Let me explain. The average cost of a rescue, veterinary treatment and boarding of each animal we take care of is €475. When we re-home an animal, having rescued, treated, rehabilitated, spayed/ neutered, micro-chipped, vaccinated, de-flead and de-wormed him, and after adoption fees are paid, there is still a deficit of €379 on each animal, or €32 per month.

Too Much Stuff Take a look at our wish list on and see if you have anything in your home you no longer want that you can donate to us. Lobby for Legislation Contact your local TD and lobby him/her to get legislation passed at local and national level and join us in the fight to save animals’ lives.

For more information, log onto or email miriam.kerins@

18 GAZETTE 22 & 29 December 2011

GazetteMOTORS MOTORS RoadSigns Road Signs HONDA TOP OF THE CLASS IN RELIABILITY: THE latest Car Reliability from Which? Car said: “Not only did Honda owners respond in the largest numbers to the 2011 Which? Car Survey, they also reported that Honda was the most reliable of all 34 brands we covered. “That’s no mean feat, and it makes Honda one name that’s worth remembering when it’s time to replace your car.” That is praise indeed from the biggest survey of car reliability and owner satisfaction in the UK. The Which? Car Reliability survey,

that asks car owners to rate their own cars, is calculated from the number of breakdown, faults and niggles suffered by all models in the last 12 months. The score for each of these are then combined to provide an overall reliability score for each manufacturer. As breakdowns are more serious than faults or niggles, they are given a heavier weighting than the other two areas. Frank Kennedy, of Universal Honda, was delighted with the result: “The Which? Car Survey is very comprehensive in that car owners who live with their cars are the people who rate the cars. This means that potential buyers will be able to make an informed decision as how good it is to own a Honda which has been rated so highly.” Honda is up one place from last year when it came second.

Back in black, but she’s laden in red Pretty as a picture, but it’s not a case of style over substance with Skoda’s Fabia Monte Carlo – there is some real fun to be had here too, says Cormac Curtis LAST WEEK, the eco credentials and mind-blowing economy of the Skoda Fabia Greenline were at the centre of the Gazette motoring pages. This week, without wanting to be too repetitive, we’re going to take a look at another Fabia, but this time, it’s something that brings a lot more fun to the table. Enter the Fabia Monte Carlo 1.2TSI. It’s an interesting experience when you get two different versions of the same car to drive back-to-back, and that is what happened to me with the Fabia Greenline and Monte Carlo last month.

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, Skoda are hitting all the right notes in the looks department these days. From the time I picked it up, this car made me smile. I find the overall look of Skoda cars very easy on the eye, and the designers kept it simple when they were styling the Monte Carlo. Sporting a bold red body, “sunset” tinted windows, and enhanced by a black roof, black boot spoiler and black painted body parts, the car stands out with the addition of a set of 17” black alloy wheels. Eye-catching interior details include stainless steel pedals

and “Monte Carlo” inscribed sill strips. The red and black upholstery lent an exciting feel to the cabin, even if the dash is a little less imaginative. So far, so Skoda – ticking all the right aesthetic boxes. But does it have enough of the fun-factor to back up its impressive looks? The short answer is yes – within reason. The car I drove was the 1.2TSI version, working off 105 bhp. Let’s just say it never ceases to surprise me just how much poke car manufacturers can get out of such modest engines.

SPECS Skoda Fabia Monte Carlo 1.2TSI 0-100 km/h:

11.7 sec

Max speed:

177 km/h


121 g/km



This is a driving car, and its turbocharged petrol engine, with direct petrol injection and just delivers a wonderful level of performance to a car that isn’t weighed down by anything as superfluous as air conditioning. But, being honest, I would

have liked a few buttons on the steering wheel to avoid being distracted by music that didn’t fit the driving experience. The week I spent with this car saw me travel to and from Dundalk on a number of occasions, detouring through Drogheda twice. The mix of off-peak motorway driving and some fun secondary roads really let me have some fun with this car, and it didn’t disappoint - and, as far as I am aware, my driving licence is still clean. It’s also worth noting that Skoda are currently offering zero per cent credit terms on the Fabia range.

22 & 29 December 2011 GAZETTE 19

20 GAZETTE 22 & 29 December 2011

GazetteMOTORS MOTORS RoadSigns Road Signs Renault create 47 jobs in six months MOTOR company, Renault, generated 47 jobs in Ireland over the last six months. The jobs were as a result of the launch of Renault Finance, the introduction of ZE ambassadors and the opening of two new dealerships. In August, Renault Finance saw 15 new jobs created in their operations, finance and marketing roles. In September, Renault announced eight new recruits. These ambassadors are dedicated to the Renault range of electric vehicles and will help to build awareness and assist customers in making informed choices. November saw the opening of two brand new premises; Tullamore Motors in Offaly and Dennehy Motors in Limerick. The two new premises will see 24 new jobs created over the next 12 months, which is great news for both counties. The Clondalkin-based AD Dublin have opened in the former Capital Brake & Clutch building

New premises a fresh start for AD Dublin THIS month sees AD Dublin motor factors move into a new location in the former Capital Brake & Clutch building in Clondalkin. AD Dublin is a branch of AD Ireland, that has a network of 19 branches countrywide. From this strategic location, the firm plans to further develop and expand their quality parts delivery service to their existing, as well as their new, customer base. In addition to the Clondalkin branch, AD Dublin also have a branch in Stadium Business Park in Ballycoolin, which services their cus-

tomers on the northside of the city. Traditionally, AD Dublin was a car and lightvehicle parts business, but this move sees the company becoming the first one-stop-shop for car, van, comercial vehicle and body repair parts in the Dublin area. They have a fully equipped diesel fuelinjection workshop on site, with full capability to diagnose and repair any diesel pump and injector problems. AD Dublin’s new location supports 30 jobs in the locality, and they hope to grow this as the business expands.


‘The company boasts a wealth of experience to help customers’ --------------------------

The company boasts a wealth of experience to help customers with all of their requirements. They carry a full range of car, van and commercial vehicle parts, as well as a full range of auto body repair shop requirements. Diagnostic equipment is becoming more prevalent in the auto repair business. AD Dublin are the

distributors for Delphi, Denso, Bosch And Texa diagnostic equipment, to which they have dedicated staff to answer any questions or queries their customers may in relation to auto diagnostics. For the company’s full range of products and services, visit their website at The AD Dublin team can be contacted at 01- 4613400 and are located at Unit 15/3 and 15/4 Crag Terrace, Clondalkin, D22. They can be emailed at, and their Ballycoolin number is 01 8975210.

22 & 29 December 2011 GAZETTE 21


Supported by AIB

AVIATION NEWS: Airline’s first flights to Dubai depart Dublin in January

The HTC Radar, running Windows’ Mango OS, is available from a number of outlets

Emirates cabin crew Zana Greer, from Australia; Kristina von Heideman, from Sweden; Emma Allen, from Cork, and, inset, Thierry Antinori

Emirates gear up for a new takeoff WITH Emirates’ inaugural flight from Dublin to Dubai just around the corner, senior executives from the award-winning airline arrived in Dublin recently to meet the media and host a gala dinner at the Convention Centre. Thierry Antinori, Emirates’ executive vice-president, passenger sales worldwide, said that Emirates had made a considerable investment in the Irish market, and was confident of the success of the new route, following unprecedented bookings for the first weeks of service. “We can see unusually high demand for the first two weeks after launch,” Mr Antinori said. “This is an excellent response from the Irish market, and we have not witnessed this level of bookings, nor such strong interest in a new route, for many years. This gives us huge confidence in Ireland and the figures support the commercial research that precedes any decision we take to launch a new service.” From January 9, daily flights will connect Dublin to Dubai, the airline’s intercontinental

hub. The new route will be served by an Airbus A330-200 with a combination of Irish and multinational cabin crew. By January, passengers will be able to conveniently connect from Dubai to more than 100 onward destinations across the Middle East, Africa, Asia and Australasia. Emirates has 70 flights per week to the key Ireland market of Australia, including an A380 service to Sydney. The airline is also the largest A380 operator in the world with 19 double-deckers in the fleet and 71 on order. “We are in the process of establishing our new office in Dublin, employing 25 staff on the ground in Ireland in the areas of management, sales, cargo and airport services,” Mr Antinori said. “Emirates has demonstrated just how committed it is to the new Dublin–Dubai service, supported by a high-profile national marketing and advertising campaign, which extends around our route network,” Mr Antinori added. In the four years to 2010, Irish

nationals made almost 170,000 visits to Dubai hotels, according to Dubai’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM). Amongst that figure will be those who travelled via the UK to join the Emirates’ network. “Dublin has always been on our radar, and there are already strong levels of trade and tourism activity between Ireland and the UAE, not to mention the important equine affiliations,” said Mr Antinori. “Equally, Emiratis like to travel to Europe, particularly during the hot UAE summer and, with its rich cultural heritage and reputation for hospitality, we think that Emirates will have a role to play in encouraging inward tourism to Ireland,” added Mr Antinori. The direct daily service will open new business opportunities for trade and commercial relations between the two countries and Ireland’s direct export capacity will be expanded with 15 tonnes of bellyhold space on each Emirates’ passenger flight, leaving the capital city. Emirates

SkyCargo, the air freight division of Emirates, is already active in Ireland and will have a dedicated team in Dublin supporting the new route. Exports trade is expected to flourish as the United Arab Emirates (UAE) is one of the fastest-growing markets for Irish companies in the Gulf region, with sales by indigenous Irish companies growing by 23% in 2010 to €58.5m, according to Enterprise Ireland. An estimated 5,000 Irish nationals live in the UAE. More than 250 Irish staff are employed across the Emirates Group in areas such as cabin crew, flight deck crew, sales and cargo. Recently, nearly 500 candidates showed up across four separate cabin crew recruitment days held in Dublin, Limerick, Galway and Cork. Successful cabin crew applicants will be brought to Dubai for seven weeks of training. The new Emirates’ team for Ireland will be headed up by country manager, Margaret Shannon. For further information, see

Microsoft put a ‘cloud’ in pockets WITH Christmas around the corner, many business owners and professionals are considering their next move, keen to upgrade their phones for the New Year to help maximise their working day in the current, challenging economic climate. Step forward Microsoft, in partnership with HTC, with their working relationship proving a natural fit in making a mobile office a practical reality on a mid-range smartphone. In addition to a wide range of the “usual” social and casual programs found on smartphones these days, and sporting Microsoft’s colourful Windows 7.5 (or Mango) OS, the HTC Radar features a fully integrated office hub, presenting a full suite of office applications. This free software – Excel, Word and PowerPoint – puts mobile working on the go in the palm of the hand, cleverly using the SkyDrive system to make cloud computing a

mobile reality. With this ability to easily edit and synchronise data when out and about via what Microsoft have cleverly dubbed “a Cloud in your pocket”, it’s hard not to be impressed by the flexibilty of seeing “mobile computing” now expanded to being truly “mobile working”, as well. When coupled with particularly well-adapted calendar integration, which, again, can synch data with ease, and it’s clear that Microsoft has faced the challenge of creating a mobile offce – and succeeded, with ease. With such useful office heavyweight programs sitting under the bonnet, the HTC Radar, running Microsoft’s Mango, lays down a serious challenge for rivals to match, with the phone potentially proving a must-have for business people and professionals – and even students – in 2012. The HTC Radar, running Microsoft’s Mango OS, is available now at a range of outlets.

22 GAZETTE 22 & 29 December 2011

GazetteTTRAVEL FastTravel Why not join the Scots or Danes on New Year’s Eve ... Celebrate New Year’s Eve in Black and White style at the Burlington

RING in 2012 in style this December 31 at the Burlington Hotel’s New Year’s Eve Black and White Gala Ball, where New Year dreams and wishes can be made for the year ahead. Taking place in the hotel’s stunning ballroom, which will be decorated in accordance with the Black and White theme, the Ball is sure to draw Ireland’s finest to say goodbye to 2011 and welcome in 2012. The party starts at 7.30pm with a prosecco reception, followed by a mouth-watering four-course dinner, expertly prepared by executive chef, Tony O’Donnell, and his experienced team. Revellers can enjoy a delicious organic curedsalmon starter, followed by curried parsnip soup, a choice between sirloin of Irish beef, grilled sea bass or spinach and asparagus tartlet for the main course, followed by a wintery wild berry tart, and tea or coffee.

Live music The celebrations will continue into the night with a late bar extension, as well as music performed by The Camembert Quartet and a DJ until 2am. When the clock finally strikes midnight, attendees and their table will enjoy a complimentary bottle of prosecco to toast the New Year. Tickets for the Burlington Hotel’s NewYear’s Eve Black and White Gala Ball are available for €75 per person. Take the stress out of travelling home once the party is over – overnight accommodation with breakfast the following morning, and a ticket to the Gala Ball, costs €149, or, for two people sharing, including a pair of tickets to the Ball, prices are from €229. Alternatively, a package, including overnight accommodation for three people sharing, with full Irish breakfast the following morning and a ticket each to the Ball, is available from €299. For further information, contact The Burlington Hotel on 01 618 5600, email, or see


FOR those looking to celebrate New Year’s Eve in memorable style, a trip to nearby neighbours, Scotland or Denmark, could be just the ticket. Ring in 2012 with one of the world’s best New Year celebrations – Hogmanay A key event in the Scottish calendar, Hogmanay celebrations on December 31 will be taking place across Scotland. Events included in this year’s line-up are sure to surprise visitors, as Scotland will play host to incredible bands and entertainment from every corner of the globe. You could join some 80,000 party goers at the Edinburgh’s worldfamous Hogmanay festival. Set beneath the stunning backdrop of Edinburgh Castle, Mark Ron-


‘Whether interested to head to sublime Scotland, or delightful Denmark, there’s lots of choice for holidaying on New Year’s Eve’


son, electro-pop band Friendly Fires, Primal Scream and Bombay Bicycle Club will be one of many bands to ensure that Edinburgh hosts a night to remember. Alternatively, one of the most surprising sites to see in the New Year is the “The Fireballs” – known as Stonehaven’s

most unique festival, and which attracts thousands of spectators each year. Swinging fireballs around their heads in a spectacular style, participants parade 175 yards up and down the High Street in the Old Town, illuminating the dark skies as they walk. The event is finished off by throwing each fireball into the sea at the harbour as the New Year sets in. Meanwhile, over in Stirling, and adding to the appeal of one of the brightest and best Hogmanay parties, and set against the stunning backdrop of Stirling Castle, Scots singer and songwriter, Eddi Reader, and the emphatic rock ‘n’ roll bagpipers – the Red Hot Chilli Pipers – are sure to bring 2012 in with style. The combination of fantastic live music, a



60 10 240

Historic Hollyrood House Palace is just one of the many stunning sights to take in on a Scottish visit, whether for New Year’s Eve or at any time of the year

friendly atmosphere and a great firework finale is set to make Stirling the place to be as the bells peal. As another destination to delight, and widely recognised as a fantastic destination for bagpipers and lovers of the bagpipes, but also for its diverse and busy music scene, Inverness will have you jiving this New Year’s Eve. S t i r l i n g ’s m u s i c a l extravaganza takes place from 8pm, right through to the wee hours of the morning. Scottish bands, Skerryvore, Hoodja, Bags of Rock and Wolfstone, and renowned Scottish comedian, Craig Hill, will be in attendance on the night to ensure that visitors are entertained, right through to 2012’s arrival and beyond. To help visitors plan a New Year break in Scotland, VisitScotland has put together more than 300 offers on places to stay, and things to see and do. For further information on Scotland’s many New Year celebrations and destinations, see www. Meanwhile, if you still haven’t decided how to ring in the New Year, or feel like taking to a further afield destination, then why not consider a romantic, seaside gourmet getaway, nestled

The delightful sights of the

amid giant sand dunes, or a sky-high designer dining experience above one of the world’s liveliest cities? Denmark, the country that lays claim to having the happiest inhabitants in the world, has it all for your New Year’s Eve experience. Check out the following fantastic events taking place this New Year’s Eve around Denmark. Join thousands of people on the lawn of Ame-

22 & 29 December 2011 SWORDS GAZETTE 23

Edited by Mimi Murray


A steam train ride with mince pies is just one imaginative New Year’s event in Northern Ireland

So much to help celebrate New Year’s around Northern Ireland

rising ranks of Edinburgh’s historic streets and buildings, rising to the imposing silhouette of the castle

lienborg, the winter residence of the monarch of Denmark. The Danish equivalent of Times Square in New York will ring in the New Year with a boisterous crowd and fireworks, after Queen Margrethe II gives her New Year speech. Fireworks in Tivoli Gardens is an exciting way of celebrating New Year’s Eve in Denmark. In fact, they offer a full five-day festival of fireworks right after Christmas, and all

the way through to New Year’s Eve. The fireworks are also accompanied by music, which makes the event even sweeter. If your idea of a New Year’s celebration is being at one with nature, then Denmark’s northernmost town, Skagnen, may be the perfect location for you. Book into a historic hotel and sample their gourmet offerings as you enjoy the surrounding

sand dunes, wide open beaches and the roaring sea. Alternatively, you could celebrate the arrival of 2012 at one of Copenhagen’s designer sky restaurants, and watch the fireworks light up the night sky. Take in the city views from Hotel Bella Sky Comwell – Scandinavia’s largest design hotel – or Radisson Blu Royal Hotel, the world’s first design hotel.

Of course, Copenhagen isn’t just a city of design, it’s also a city of music. Start your New Year’s Eve celebration with a classic music extravaganza at the city’s heritage Royal Danish Theatre. Clubbers and nightowls will enjoy the New Year’s Eve party in one of Copenhagen’s top nightclubs, Culture Box. This event started in 2005, and has grown since then. This year promises to be the best

yet, with a massive DJ line-up, featuring the likes of Tom Collins and DJ Bjarke. Don’t miss out on any of the action – SAS fly direct from Dublin to Copenhagen, twice daily, from as little as €69 one way, including all taxes and charges. So, whether you head to sublime Scotland, or delightful Denmark, there’s lots of choice for holidaying New Year’s Eve revellers.

NORTHERN Ireland has a host of activities for the New Year period that are not all that far from Dublin. Belfast’s wackiest winter event – Penguin Curling – returns to W5, and all the family can have a go from Tuesday, December 27 to Tuesday, January 3. The aim of the game is to freeze out your opponent by knocking their penguin away, and get the points to snatch the match. For a different start to the year, why not make a trip to the New Year’s Day Dip in Antrim? CLIC Sargent, the leading children’s and young people’s cancer charity, is calling for people to brave the elements and sign up for a sponsored dip in Portrush East Strand Beach to help raise money. Meanwhile, Christmas on Ice at Lisburn Leisure Park is guaranteed fun for everyone. Not only is the 2,500 sq ft fully-enclosed synthetic ice rink in place until Sunday, January 8, but a brand-new activity is also available – Water Ball. Here, you can get in a watertight Zorb-like ball and walk, roll or run on water. Alternatively, board a steam train at the Downpatrick and County Down Railway on New Year’s Day for the popular Mince Pie Special. The same steam train used by Santa will coast through the County Down countryside while all guests enjoy free mince or apple pies, and some festive mulled wine or winter punch. Why not walk the woods with an experienced guide? Take part in the New Year’s Day Walk at Mount Stewart. Dogs are also welcome, so no member of the family has to stay at home. People planning a festive visit to Northern Ireland can take advantage of the exclusive accommodation offers available from the Tourist Information Centre, which include a two-night break with breakfast and one evening meal from £64.50 pps at the Ramada Encore, Belfast; £99 pps at the Ramada Portrush; £89 pps at the Armagh City Hotel; £79 pps at the Tower Hotel, Derry; £85 pps in the Clandeboye Lodge Hotel, Bangor; £89 pps at the Killyhevlin Hotel in Fermanagh, and £89 pps at the Silverbirch Hotel in Omagh. For further information on these and many other events and offers, contact the Northern Ireland Tourist Board on Callsave 1850 230 230; visit the Tourist Information Centre, Suffolk Street, Dublin 2 to avail of its free advice and booking service, or see

24 SWORDS GAZETTE 22 & 29 December 2011


DESPITE Christmas being upon us, The Pavilion is showing no sign in slowing down its line of great shows for arts and theatre fans, with a number of terrific acts heading to The Pavilion right after Christmas. For example, in mid-January, 47 Roses will bring the sights and sounds of 1960s’ Dublin to life, in a coming-of-age tale that recreates the bygone era. This tale of the past is definitely one to look out for – in the very near future! For more, see

MILL THEATRE 01 296 9340 Rainbow’s End

WHAT a colourful way to prepare for the end of the year! In Rainbow’s End, The Mill presents a delightful family show, as the tale of a lost Crown Prince and missing rainbows is sure to delight audiences of all ages. Can Wendy, a student witch, get the rainbows back and save the day? And did anybody say they heard pirates? All will be revealed with Wendy to the rescue ... Catch Rainbow’s End on Wednesday, December 28 at 2.30pm. For full ticketing and performance details, see

DRAIOCHT 01 885 2622 Caroline Donohue

A LONG-term exhibition, Caroline Donohue’s body of work has been fascinating visitors to the first-floor gallery since its installation in November. Her selected works, to date, examine the point where Man and the natural world co-exist, or in some cases, collide. By examining these spaces, and their occasional paradoxes, Caroline provides glimpses of places to think, and dream, as internal and external worlds collide. You can see Caroline’s thoughtful body of work at Draiocht until her exhibition closes on Saturday, February 25.

Some films for your consideration this Christmas season ... Puss in Boots, Arthur Christmas, Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn and New Year’s Eve – all competing for your attention, adding to the diverse range of films out this festive season

Xmas crackers ...? Some may be duds, while others will entertain, in Kate’s seasonal roundup of some films on release this season Q KATE CROWLEY

’TIS the season to be jolly – jolly glad that the only turkey I’ll be going near for the next couple of weeks will be the one located close to the Crowley household’s Aga, rather than the type of turkey I see all year round on a big screen in the city centre, quietly driving me gaga. Turkeys – of the cinematic variety, at least – well, those turkeys can live on to fight (for the remaining Recessionist buttons and fluff clattering around in my Hermes purse) another day. However, as much as I love cinema – despite being nicknamed TwoStars back at Gazette Towers, on account of my harsh-but-fair ratings – I imagine that most readers will be celebrating the joys of Christmas by concentrating on the small screen at home, rather than the big screen, over the next

FILM OF THE WEEK: Various +++ (G to 12A) Directors: Various Starring: An adventurer cat, Santa’s son, angsty vampires and Stock Characters – though not, sadly, all in the same film

OUR VERDICT: ALTHOUGH not a collection of true Christmas crackers, a selection of some of the (previously unreviewed) films on current release features some interesting choices for cinema fans, this Christmas. Children and families are well-served with these, and other choices, while, although new blockbusters are as thin as snow on the ground, there’s still an interesting choice of films on release for all audiences.

couple of weeks. Still, should the delights of turkey-surprise for approximately 18 days, or the comforting glow of an Eastenders Christmas Special somehow fail to keep you at home, let me point you at a few Christmas crackers to catch, if you haven’t already. (Note that I use the term “crackers”with more dryness than the Crowley turkey if Mr Crowley is allowed near the Aga, but let’s proceed.) For families, there’s a bunch of child-friendly films to take in, such as Puss in Boots (G, 90min,

+++), which sees Antonio Banderas return to voice the popular Shrek character, who gets his own adventure. If you ever wanted to learn more about the talking cat adventurer, and how he came to be so well-known, this is the one for you. Meanwhile, Arthur Christmas (G, 97mins, +++) sees Wallace and Gromit makers, Aardman, present the definitive version of how Santa Claus’ annual Christmas operation really works, courtesy of his blabbermouth son, Arthur.

I can’t say I knew very much about one Arthur Christmas beforehand, but this cheerfully daft film takes an interesting approach to the iconic figure, making it okay family fare, and at least there are no vampires around. I spoke too soon. The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn (12A, 117min, +) continues the love affair between bland Bella and drippy Edward. Personally, I think the Twilight saga would be somewhat livened up if only someone would call for Buffy, the girl with an oft-remarked-upon dislike for vampires. Alas, but no. Still, as relentlessly awful as all of the Twilight films have been, I’d stake my Christmas dinner on this being a massive hit, even though I still insist – fangs, but no fangs. Sticking with the 12A slot – and comparable levels of quality – New Year’s Eve (117min, ++)

is another one of those American rom-coms that appear a couple of times of year, typically when one’s resistance is lowered by seasonal celebrations. You all know the drill by now – a big cast, comprising stock characters (The Beautiful But Sad One, The One With Ishhoos, The Bad One With A Heart Of Gold, etc), with disparate paths and life journeys and lessons to be learned, all colliding on – well, as I love saying – the clue’s in the title, folks! Seeing as it’s Christmas, the kindest thing I can say is that it’s not totally awful. (New Year’s Eve, you owe me...) And that’s yer lot, as I doubt many are so interested in cinema for the next week or two. That said, ol’ Two-Stars here would like to wish all my readers (yes, both of you) the very best this Christmas, and a Happy New Year, both at home and at the cinema. Humbug!

22 & 29 December 2011 SWORDS GAZETTE 25

GazetteGAMING GAMING Trigger memories of great 2011 games SHANE DILLON

IT’S been another great year for games, with some superb titles appearing on all formats, and giving lots of choice for great Christmas presents. Regardless of gamers’ platform of choice, and whether or not titles were platform-exclusive or multi-platform, some vintage titles came out in 2011. Starting off, Microsoft had plenty of terrific titles, with some enormously popular franchises seeing very strong additions. Although “hardcore” gamers were busy tackling the Locust menace in Gears of War 3 and the like, it was interesting to see how Microsoft’s Kinect began to make inroads into mainstream gaming. While I expect there’ll be lots of people having fun with Kinect Dance Central 2 this Christmas, and a number of other cool Kinect-enabled titles, it was seeing


‘Regardless of gamers’ platform of choice, some vintage titles came out in 2011’


Kinect enabled in racing title, Forza 4, that was a bit of an eye opener for the XBox 360. Meanwhile, while Microsoft had some outstanding titles, Sony were hardly a slouch in the games department either, with recently-released Uncharted 3 proving a particularly strong contender for Game of the Year. The PlayStation 3 was also well served by a number of exclusive titles, with Killzone 3 proving another big winner. In fact, virtually anything with a “3” in the title served both the 360 and the PS3 well, as did

other sequels and iterations. Unfor tunately, “3” wasn’t quite as lucky for Nintendo, as its 3DS underperformed for a variety of reasons - and, to be fair, 3D hasn’t quite caught on with people as had been expected. With the 3DS somewhat floundering, Nintendo seemed somewhat adrift this year, leaving the bigger games’ battles to be slugged out – as usual – by the two biggest contenders. Still, a late return for Link, in the latest, highly-imaginative Zelda adventure, and notable other titles, showed that Nintendo still has plenty of life, whether on the Wii or the DS. However, the biggest gaming story of the year was also one that was somewhat under-reported – the rise and rise of Apple as a major gaming force to be reckoned with. Main street retailers, and international com-

panies, continued to report on declining sales, and issue profit warnings, as the industry seemed to contract more than ever before, with key titles propping up otherwise slack returns, and with several games companies going under this year. Lots of theories were bandied about, from digital distribution channels siphoning away customers to consumers having less money. Few paid much heed to the idea that lots of casual gamers – the kind who’d never think of spending €40 on a game, but easily snapped up iPhone games from €0.79 a pop – were suddenly focusing on Apple products, and eating into mainstream gaming markets in this way. Meanwhile, PC titles continued to flail around this year, with few titles of note, and with nowhere near the same level of public interest as on the more “mainstream” platforms.

Eve n t h e m i g h t y World of Warcraft lost some lustre, with its intermittent official magazine folding – pun intended – after just five issues. And so, despite some superb titles, but considering the volatility of the gaming sector, it’ll be interesting to see how the markets develop in 2012, and to see what these platforms have lined up. Still, looking ahead, gamers have lots to look out for in the near future. Gotham City Imposters , Final Fantasy 13-2, Metal Gear Solid HD collection, Binary Domain, Max Payne 3, Silent Hill: Downpour, The Secret World , Diablo 3 and many more titles are on the way, helping to show that, no matter what’s going on in the rest of the increasingly poor world, at least gamers’ worlds will be as rich, imaginative and varied as ever. Here’s to a happy new year of great games, on great consoles ...

Bytesandpieces Crazy Dave’s Xmas bid to help Concern IT’S not often that zombies can be counted on for help, but this year, they’re doing their bit to help fundraise for Concern. Or, rather, Crazy Dave – the oddball shopkeeper with a saucepan on his head from the hit comical strategy game, Plants vs Zombies – has temporarily taken a break from selling garden rakes, bacon strips and compost to make a fundraising Christmas single. Ignoring the peril of nearby garden-invading zombies, Crazy Dave – or “Cray-Z”, as he’s renamed himself – has released Wabby Wabbo,

with games developers, PopCap donating all PopCap proceeds earned from the single’s sale, before December 22, to Concern Worldwide. With more than 465,000 views of his single on YouTube, and with almost 5.5 million followers of Plants vs Zombies’ Facebook page, Cray-Z is looking for lots of his fans to purchase the track, and help to support Concern. Wabby Wabbo is available on iTunes, priced €0.99.

Kinect prize giveaway competition for the XBox 360. With the chance to win a copy of the games, Kinect Sports 1 and Kinect Sports 2, lots of readers emailed in the correct answer to the following question:

Winners picked for Kinect competition

The correct answer was Darts. Under the strictest of conditions (involving a hat), all correct answers (with one per entrant) were put into the hat, with five winners then

THE Gazette had a great response from readers for our

Which of the following sports can you play on Kinect Sports 2? A. Darts B. Rugby C. Water Polo

Five Fi e readers eaders ha have e won o a co copy of Kinect Sports 2, for the XBox 360

selected at random. The five winners are: Patrick Kavanagh; Rita McTague, Blanchardstown; Michael Wisely, Navan Road; Mary Doyle, Windy Arbour and Ann Crowley, Glenageary. Prizes will be posted out at the start of the New Year. Congratulations to all the winners!

A modern-day cross between Lara Croft and Indiana Jones, Nelson Drake’s continuing adventures proved a 2011 gaming highlight in Uncharted 3, on the PS3


26 SWORDS GAZETTE 22 & 29 December 2011







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22 & 29 December 2011 SWORDS GAZETTE 27


SPORT STARS: December’s nominees are revealed: Page 29


Lavery switches to new British Giordana outfit

COOLMINE cyclist Phil Lavery has made the switch from the Irish-owned An Post Grant T hornton M. Donnelly Sean Kelly professional team to race instead for the new Node4 Giordana squad in 2012. Speaking this week about the move, Lavery said the new team is likely to provide him with a better fit. “I felt

that An Post was not the right team for me. The kind of race programme like the [An Post] Ras, Tour of Britain, Tour of Norway and stage races in France, Spain and Portugal suits me more than a lot of the Belgian races. “There are also the Premier Calendar events and I will be released to ride the midweek Nation’s Cup Under-23 races for Ireland. At the start I plan to remain in

Dublin but will move across during the season.” Lavery is one of seven new riders, with James Moss, K ieran Frend, Matt Higgins, Dave Clarke, Matt Cronshaw and Rico Rogers to join the new team. Rogers won a stage on the Tour of China – where Nicolas Roche picked up his maiden win – and will be the t e a m ’s m a i n s p r i n t option.

Phil Lavery, in international action, has switched from Sean Kelly’s team to a new British pro outfit

The Blanch man could make his debut in the Australian Criterium championships early in the New Year, a competition in which he finished fourth last time around.

It has not yet been announced when Lavery will begin his season. He finished second in the Under-23 classification at the Irish road race championships last year and rode solidly in

Europe. He adds that this new team can provide the springboard to pushing on in the professional world. “I still have plenty of international ambitions

and would like to get on a ProTour team in the next couple of years. I know I have the ability, it is a question of showing the confidence and getting the right results.”

28 SWORDS GAZETTE 22 & 29 December 2011

GazetteSport Sport FastSport

Kettle returned as chair of Dublin Board FINGAL Ravens Andy Kettle was returned unopposed as the chairman of the Dublin County Board at Monday night’s convention at Parnell Park. He remains in situ as the chairman as well as sitting on the central council to stay in the post for a second year since taking over the biggest job in the country board from Naomh Mearnog’s Gerry Harrington. Indeed, Kettle was voted into the central council position just ahead of Harrington in the one vote on the night. Kettle’s tenure has already proven a memorable one as long waits for a national hurling league title and the All-Ireland senior football championship came to an end. The chairman now hopes this can be a springboard to further success at senior level but stressed during the week that such outcomes are only the product of doing the right things at grass-roots level, saying this week that “if you stand still, you go backwards”. His second-in-command is Sean Shanley, the Craobh Chiarain man holding the vice-chairman berth with Whitehall Colmcille’s Jim Roche taking on the assistant secretary position for a 20th year. The other positions on the board were filled by St Pat’s Palmerstown’s Finbarr O’Mahony as Treasurer, taking over from Sean O’Mahony. Donal Hickey is in the development officer role while Ballyboden St Enda’s man Gerry O’Sullivan has the PRO duties. Noel Murphy (Trinity Gaels), Con Clarke (O’Toole’s) will report to the Leinster council. The main item for discussion was the format of the senior football and hurling championships which creaked under the success of the Dubs.


Canada-based SHane Dagg has been impressing at school and club level in British Columbia and has been selected for an Under-17 side

’Hide pair set for call

T WO M A L A H I DE Rugby Club alumni, Killian Sweeney and Shane Dagg, have been chosen to represent their countries, playing rugby on the highest platform of youth level in the sport. Killian Sweeney, who plays with Malahide RFC’s Under-19s team has been chosen for representative honours with the Irish Under18 squad. This is a very proud moment for Killian, his family and Malahide RFC. More good news for Malahide Rugby Club came when they were told that former underage player, Shane Dagg, whose parents emigrated to Canada a few years ago, had been selected to train with

the Canadian Under-17 Development Academy during 2012. Shane’s grandfather is Malahide businessman and former Malahide Rugby Club president, Eric Crampton. Killian has been named in a 25-man squad in the Irish Under18 team for a one-day camp in December. There will be further training camps toward the end of the month in preparation for Ireland’s games against Italy, France and England. K illian said: “T he experience, so far, has been amazing. After all the hard work I have put in over the last few years in the Metro Regional Squad, TIP program and for the Leinster Youths, it is nice to see it pay off in the form of, hope-

fully, going out onto the pitch to represent my club and country against Italy in February.” Shane, meanwhile, has been invited to participate next season in the Canadian 2012 Development Academy. Shane learned his rugby as a young boy with Malahide Rugby Club, where he played on underage teams before emigrating to British Columbia in 2003 with his parents, Alan and Gillian Dagg, and his sister Emma and brother Ryan. Since arriving in Canada, Shane has played schools’ rugby and also club rugby in Delta, British Columbia. He is now looking forward to his rugby future with great enthusiasm.

Killian Sweeney was selected to train with Ireland U-18s

22 & 29 December 2011 SWORDS GAZETTE 29

in association with




+ STARof the

Railway Union join voices to salute Leinster effort





THE Swords swimmer claimed eight national titles in one weekend and broke two national records in the 100m butterfly and the 50m butterfly at the Irish national short course championships at Lisburn this month.

THE National Yacht Club member was in rare form in Perth, Australia, this month, qualifying for the 2012 London Olympic Games with impressive performances in the Laser Radial class that saw her challenge for a medal.

THE Dublin South Dublin athletic star showed his growing maturity on the international stage with a fifth-place placing in Slovenia at the European Cross-Country championships this month against top class opposition.

+ TEAMof the MONTH




THE Russell Park side exceeded expectations and came within seconds of a heroic comeback in the Leinster final against Garrycastle, but were denied a deserved win by a free late on in the match.

DONNYBROOK’S finest were crowned Leinster Senior League Shield winners at home this month, winning their first Leinster senior title since 1985 when they defeated Greystones in the final in a thrilling match.

UNITED reached the fourth round of the FAI intermediate cup in spite of being in a league four divisions below the teams that they faced in the competition, impressing with their determination and fearlessness.

WELCOME to the 2011 Dublin Sports Awards, as we mark our local sportsmen and women’s December sporting achievements across the capital and, indeed, across the nation. We’re delighted to once again be able to celebrate the finest achievements in Dub-

lin sport, with some huge efforts at local levels coming to our attention in a variety of well-known, and some, less prominent, sports. Ever y form of sporting achievement, at any level and in any sport, is valuable and gives an indication of the diversity of sporting commit-

ment there is around our fair city at all times of the year.

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. You can also check out the latest stories from GazetteSport at our new website,

PLAYERS from Railway Union Rugby Football Club got Heineken Cup match-goers into the festive spirit last weekend when they serenaded Leinster and Bath fans on their way to the Aviva stadium. The Sandymount club were raising funds for much-needed floodlights for their Park Avenue pitch, and impressed the fans with their carolling. With many sports clubs struggling in recent times to secure funding for necessary facility additions and repairs, several have turned to innovative ways of raising the funds. Railway Union RFC decided to flex their vocal chords and the players were put through their paces in the changing rooms every night after training. Leinster fans were treated to the dulcet sounds of the Railway Union choir at two locations in the hours leading up to the important Cup showdown.

Brennan race set for Phoenix Park launch LIFFEYValley’s Athletic Club annual Tom Brennan Trophy 5k Race will launch the Office of Public Works’ celebration of the 350th anniversary of the establishment of the Phoenix Park on NewYear’s Day. The Minister of State at The Department of Finance, Brian Hayes will formally launch the year of celebrations by starting the race at 12 noon. The Phoenix Park was established in 1662 by one

of Ireland’s most illustrious viceroys, James Butler Duke of Ormond, on behalf of King Charles 11. The race will start at 12 noon on the Furze Road and will consist of two laps of the Ordnance Survey Road and Chesterfield Avenue lap. A relatively flat course which will enable runners to get their NewYear off to a good start with a new personal best for 5k provided, of course, they have not been celebrating too much on NewYears Eve. European Cross Country Champion Fionnuala Britton set a new women’s course record last year of 16.39.

30 SWORDS GAZETTE 22 & 29 December 2011

GazetteSport Sport FastSport

Aboud ends year on high with European gold FINGAL fighter Chloe Aboud has been laden down with medals in recent weeks, and topped a fine 2011 with two gold medals and a bronze medal at the European Tae Kwon Do Championship that took place recently in Slovakia. The Irish team were rewarded with the bronze medal overall, and there were great successes throughout the grades for Irish fighters. Cloe’s success comes weeks after the Irish Taekwon-Do Association Irish Cup in Limerick, where she won the best overall competitor honour, taking three gold medals. The competition attracted 530 competitors, with Dublin ITF sending a team of 45 who performed to a very high level.

Swords U-18s face Templeogue in semis SWORDS basketball club’s Under-18 men will play Templeogue in Cork in January followed the release of the revised schedule for the 2012 National Cup semifinals. The Neptune Stadium in Cork will host the SuperLeague National Cup semi-finals (men and women), while the Under-18, Under-20 and senior sections (both codes) will take place in the Parochial Hall, Cork. As such, Swords will play their tie at 12.30pm on January 15 as they bid to

reach a landmark AllIreland final. Swords progressed to the knock-out phases when they emerged from the group stages with a perfect record with wins over Killester, Neptune, St Brendan’s and Father Matthews. It set up a Dublin derby date with Marian in the quarterfinals whom they duly overcame in early December with plenty to spare, notching a comfortable 97-55 victory over their southside rivals. On the other side of the draw, Maree will face the Dublin Raiders after they produced last-eight victories over Killester and Ballincollig, respectively.


Conan Byrne, right, seen here playing for Sporting Fingal, was one of the players to commit to Shelbourne for the next season

Swords men re-sign for Shels

SWORDS’ men Lorcan Fitzgerald and Conan Byrne both confirmed they have re-signed for Shelbourne for the 2012 season following an impressive first season at the club. They were among Alan Matthews’ list of 11 signings for the new term following the club’s promotion to the top tier of League of Ireland. Both had found themselves out of contract at the end of the 2010 season after the collapse of Sporting Fingal after a couple of years climbing the ladder, culminating

in an FAI Senior Cup success. But the inability to secure the funds left the Swords pair in search of a new home, with Shelbourne coming calling and embarking on a superb season. Indeed, Shels picked up the pieces to bring in a string of former Fingal men to add to their ranks. It led to promotion from the first division, denied the title at the last by Cork City while they produced an epic performance despite being reduced to ten men early in the Senior Cup final, with Stephen Paisley immense.

Floating on Ayr: St Paul’s take home Corn an Chladaigh ST PAUL’S, Ayrfield, were celebrating

their success this week when they claimed the Corn An Chladaigh following their victory over near neighbours Holy Trinity, Donaghmede, on the finals day at the annual Allianz Cumann na mBunscol at GAA headquarters in Croke Park. The event celebrates the best of primary school Gaelic games with the first half of the season focusing on football for both boys and girls.

Ultimately denied on penalties by Sligo Rovers, their ability to compete was shown in spades and will hold them in good stead going into the new term. To that end, Matthews has been quick to act to pin down the likes of Fitzgerald, Byrne and Paisley. Also kept involved are Ian Ryan, Brian Clancy, Gareth Matthews, David Cassidy, Kevin Dawson, Andy Boyle and Philly Hughes. Glenn Cronin has made the switch from Bohemians having won the title with the Dalymount club in 2008 after a number of years in the

English leagues one and two. Elsewhere, Swords’ man Matt Doherty put in a strong performance for the Wolves’ reserves last week as they took the spoils from a Black Country ‘mini-derby’ against West Brom as Johnny Gorman settled the tie late on. The Northern Ireland international winger drilled home substitute Zeli Ismail’s left-wing cross from 12 yards at the far post. The 1-0 win was just reward for a strong second-half performance against the FA Premier Reserve League South

leaders. Doherty produced an excellent block to keep out Romaine Sawyers’ drilled effort from just inside the box as part of an assured performance at right-back. It continues a decent year for the rising star who signed a new contract with the Midlands club in September that could keep him at the club until at least 2014. He cost the club just £70,000 from Bohemians in 2010 after impressing Mick McCarthy on a preseason tour to Ireland and has made a couple of inroads into the first team in the past few months.

22 & 29 December 2011 SWORDS GAZETTE 31

in association with


CLUB NOTICEBOARD FINGALLIANS Tickets are now on sale for the Car

So bring the whole family down.

Development Draw. It may make the

The Club will be adding to our full-

ideal Christmas present - Please

time coaching staff with Simon Lam-

email, or con-

bert, who will start on January 12. In

tact Declan Brady 086 388 7361 if you

addition to his qualifications, Simon

require a ticket prior to December

will also bring the experience of


being a member of the Dublin hurling

Annual mixed Married v Singles

panel since 2007. His medal collection

match is on St Stephens Day in the

includes five club SHC, one club SFC

club at 12 noon.

and NHL Division 1 winners medals in

Are the married players slowing


down? Will the single players have

Our Irish language group are meet-

partied too much? Its time to find

ing in Club Chonradh na Gaeilge, 6 Har-

out. Captaining the Singles team in his

court St, D2, on Thursday,December

final appearance will be David Markey

22 at 8pm for a Cóisir Nollaig or

and the married team will be cap-

Christmas Party. Fáilte roimh chách.

tained again this year by Paul O’Neill.

After Christmas they are back in the

The bar will be open from 12.30pm and

clubhouse each Wednesday at 9pm.

the evening will finish with a Trad session.

The club would like to pay tribute to Brian Fahy who died recently.

FINGAL RAVENS WELL done to Darren Daly who Dublin ladies’ captain of 2010, Denise Masterson, will line out agains for the Dubs’ Stars. Pictures:

Locals named in the 2011 Dubs Stars side Q

LOCAL trio Cliodhna O’Connor, Sinead Aherne and Denise Masterson have all been named in the ladies football Dubs Stars selection for an incredible third successive year. All-Ireland winners in 2010, they have been included in the team of the Dublin championships every year since the event was introduced in 2009 showing their consistently brilliant performances for club and county. O’Connor and Masterson are among three Naomh Mearnog club members to be called into the side with Anne Clarke getting the nod in the selection, too, while Kathleen Colreavy is included on the management ticket. Aherne is the sole St Sylvester’s player to get the call after an incredible year for the Malahide women in reaching the

All-Ireland junior club semi-final before their run came to an end at the hands of Aherlow. En route, Aherne was named Player of the Match in both the Leinster and Dublin final victories while she was also the top scorer in the intercounty championship season and picked up the Golden Boot for her efforts. They take their place in a very strong line-up which features recently honoured DLGFA Player’s Player of the Year, Sinead Goldrick, Round Towers’ livewire forward Hannah Tyrell, as well as a couple of St Brigid’s young tyros, Olivia Smartt and Aisling King. The 2011 Dub Stars will take on the Dublin senior team under the management of new boss Peter Clarke on Tuesday December 27 on St Brigid’s GAA club all weather pitch at 12.30pm. The football game will be preceded by the cam-

ogie fixture which has an 11am throw-in time. To date the Dubs Stars and Dublin have one win each under their belts so it’s all to play for on December 27, the man in charge of this exciting encounter will be Keith Tighe, of St Anne’s GAA club. The list included 13 first-time winners, making the achievements of O’Connor, Aherne and Masterson all the more impressive as plenty of new names have hit the scene in recent times. Naomh Mearnog, St Brigid’s and Round Towers Clondalkin lead the

way with three award winners each followed by Parnells and Raheny with two winners while Foxrock Cabinteely, Kilmacud Crokes, St Sylvester’s, Na Fianna, Skerries Harps, Ballyboden St Enda’s and Clontarf all have one representative on this year’s panel. The footballers will be managed by another local, St Margaret’s man, Pat Stritch. On the camogie side, the line-up is dominated by players from Erin’s Isle, Raheny and Ballyboden St Enda’s who make up 11 of the players in the line-up.

Kettle’s Hotel.

received his All-Ireland medal on Sun-

A few copies of A Rare Auld Season,

day, Darren is the first member of our

€18, and the Dublin GAA yearbook,

club to receive a Celtic cross.

€15 are still available, please text or

Thanks to everyone who supported

call Desy on 087-9957429; either of

our Christmas raffle on Saturday;

these books would be a very welcome

thanks to everyone who very kindly

Christmas present.

donated prizes. Thanks to every-

Congratulations to Micko and Deb-

one who bought tickets and special

bie White on the birth of their son,

thanks to the group of people who


sold tickets: 1st prize, turkey, ham

Lotto numbers were 7, 11, 15 and

and wine – Karla McCullagh, 2nd tur-

27. There was one winner of €250 for

key and ham – Ciaran McGrath, 3rd

three numbers - Elaine Casey. Next

overnight stay in Castleknock Hotel

week’s jackpot is €3,060 approx.

– Aoife Convery, 4th Meal for two in Kettles Hotel – Banjo Jnr.

We would like to wish all our members, players, mentors, committee

A full list of winners on our club web-

members, sponsors and all their

site, on our

families a very happy Christmas and

club Facebook page, or in the bar of

a prosperous New Year.

ST FINIAN’S T HE exe c u t i ve c o m m i t t e e a r e

The juvenile section will be carry-

delighted to announce the appoint-

ing out bag-packing on Thursday

ment of Denis O’Keeffe as chairman

and Friday in Supervalu Boriomhe.

of the club for 2012.

We would also like to wish all our

We wish Denis the best of luck in

members a Happy Christmas and

his second spell as chairman. Full

best wishes for a healthy and suc-

details of the 2012 committee can

cessful 2012.

be found on our website: w w w.

Remember, if you would like to work off some of the Christmas

We are also pleased to announce

excesses, we will be having the

the appointment of our new adult

annual Married vs Singles football

football team manager, Stephen

match on St Stephen’s Day at 11am


in Nevinstown.

We wish Stephen lots of success in

The Lotto jackpot was €2,800 and

the coming year. He will be meet-

the numbers drawn were 9, 10, 14

ing all adult and minor players this

and 16. There was no winner.

week in the clubhouse. The Fashion Show DVD is now available for €10, you can order yours by sending an email to info@stfinians.

The €50 winners were Linda Dolan and Jen Byrne. N e x t w e e k ’s j a c k p o t w i l l b e €3,000.

com. A small number of DVDs will be

Follow us for on Twitter @StFini-

available in the club shop but please

ansSwords, and check out our web-

place your order by email.



NEW DEALS: Swords footballers secure contracts for the 2012 league season P30

DECEMBER 22 & 29, 2011

DECEMBER’S STARS All the nominees for the final month of 2011 P29


BARRY Murphy stole the headlines from the Irish Open short-course championships in Lisburn last weekend when he smashed a string of records and took home a series of gold medals. His final tally was eight golds, one silver and two national records. Indeed, four of these medals were confirmed on day one of the gala last Friday as the Olympic qualifier blazed a trail through the field at the meet. He marked everyone’s card with a stunning 100m butterfly swim in which he broke Steve McQuillan’s national record by over half a second with a time of 53.34. He subsequently added the 50m breaststroke (27.53) and 100m individual medley (55.71) before helping his home club, Aer Lingus, to the 4x50m medley relay. Aided by his ALSAA club mates, Sean O’Brien, Conor Turner and Andrew Meegan, the gold was annexed in a

time of 1:47.42. A fifth gold followed on Saturday when the Londonbound Murphy took home the men’s 100m breastroke, albeit in a relatively slow time of 1:04.17. Given the packed nature of his programme, Murphy had decided to withdraw from the final of the 100m freestyle but he would later bring home a sixth medal with a silver in one of the other relays he took part in. This came in the 4x50 freestyle team, finishing behind the team of Andy Hunter, David Graham, David Thompson and Steven McQuillan.

Records But he came back with a vengeance on Sunday when he smashed the Irish Senior 50m butterfly record in the heats of the 50m butterfly (24.03), where he knocked half a second off the old record, which has stood since 2002. He broke this record again in the final, dipping under 24 seconds to record a time of 23.95.

Olympic-bound Barry Murphy produced an impressive showing in Lisburn last weekend

And his weekend was completed when the Aer Lingus SC men’s team of O’Brien, Murphy, Meegan and Turner picked up gold in the 4x100 medley relay, and with Gavin Truman replacing O’Brien, the team also picked up the gold in the 4x100 freestyle relay. It was a weekend of high

achievement for the club as Meegan and Turner picked up a one-two for Aer Lingus in the 1500m freestyle. Turner produced a brilliant swim to go under the existing Irish Junior Record in a time of 8.12.73. Meegan also won the 400m Individual Medley in a thrilling race between Philip Duffy







Murphy’s monster medal haul

(St Paul’s) and Cian Duffy (Galway) with Meegan coming out on top in 4.29.59. It followed the club’s superb performance at the Leinster Winter Championships in which they captured the best overall team award with a staggering 1,671.50 points, nearly 1,000 points ahead of their nearest rivals.


Let there be light: Festive fever hits local homes Fun, fun, fun with Skoda’s Fabia Monte Carlo ALSOINSIDE: MOTORING: P18 A FESTIVE DOUBLE E...