Slaney News, Issue 167, April 2024

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ServiNg Co. wexford for the laSt 13 yearS Frizelle McCarthy Solicitors Annette McCarthy B.C.L. Suzanne Carthy B.A. L.L.B. Jillian O’Shea L.L.B. Reliable advice on all aspects of the law since 1929 Solicitors & Commissioners for Oaths Mill Park Road, Enniscorthy, Y21 W5T1 Tel: 053 92 33547  Email: DUFFRY HILL, ENNISCORTHY. T: (053) 9234660. Haven Kavanagh’s Pharmacy Pharmaton Immuno 10 30 pack Special April Deal €9.95 Food & Drink Celebrations & Occasions Private Dining Function Room Hire The Bailey The Home of Good Food +353 92 30353 Barrack Street, Enniscorthy, Co. Wexford Food Served all day from 12pm Bar & Eatery WHILE STOCKS LAST Sla ney News Enniscorthy Rugby Club Chairperson Annette Soraine with club member and current Irish rugby international Aoife Wafer. See story page 131.
SlaNey adS 10th April 2024 - Page 3 Contents of this issue of Slaney News... News page 4 Leisure & Lifestyle page 68 Arts page 107 Food & Drink page 110 Business & Finance page 115 Pets page 125 Motoring page 126 Sport page 128 History & Heritage page 138 Environment page 145 We would be delighted to receive stories and photos from our readers around the county. If you have anything you’d like us to share, please email and we will do our best to include as many photos and stories as possible. A family-owned Wexford company providing you with a reliable and quality service since 1988  Ask about our Easy Pay Budget Plan  All Major Credit & Laser Cards Accepted Delivering Kerosene, Diesel, Gas Oil, Agri Diesel to homes, farms and businesses all around Co. Wexford. TEL: 053-9255219 - RATHNURE - ENNISCORTHY PAT MURPHY OIL LTD.

Welcome to the April issue of the Slaney News.

As always there’s lots happening around Enniscorthy at present and hopefully we’ve managed to cover most of it in this bumper 154-page issue.

The Hope & Dream 10 event has just taken place – a huge success with 1,675 people having registered.

Enniscorthy Credit Union is celebrating 60 years serving its members this year – a remarkable success story, now with assets of €230 millon and 32,000 members. As we go to press, the second Enniscorthy Forum Buildings Action Coalition Summit is taking place in the Riverside Park Hotel, Enniscorthy. Enniscorthy continues to lead the way internationally when it comes to establishing near-zero and resilient buildings as the new norm worldwide by 2030.

Having just celebrated Easter and St Patrick’s Day (both extensively covered in this issue) we look ahead at three upcoming festivals – the Enniscorthy Rockin’ Food & Fruit Festival taking place over the May bank holiday weekend, to be followed in July by the Wexford Strawberry Weekend in the Village at Wheelocks, and in August the All Ireland Fleadh Cheoil comes to Wexford town but no doubt Enniscorthy will benefit from plenty of Fleadh-related activity also.

We include as always a huge number of photos taken around Enniscorthy, and beyond. If you would like to purchase any of our photos please get in touch by email at

If you have any news or photos you’d like us to share in the Slaney News, please email them to and we will do our best to include as much as possible. Also, please let us know what you think about our new format. Telephone: 087-2403310, or message us through our Facebook page, ‘Slaney News’, which now has over 11,900 Followers. And, of course, if you like our online format please spread the word so we can grow our online readership. Thank you

A fun evening to help raise funds for the Enniscorthy Street Rhythms Dance Fest:

Put your knowledge to the test and enjoy a fun evening at Enniscorthy Golf Club with family and friends. All are welcome to go along and take part on April 12th at 8pm.

SlaNey ad SlaNey NewS Page 4 - 10th April 2024 SLANEY NEWS SLANEY NEWS, CLONHASTON, ENNISCORTHY Tel: 087-2403310 Email: Facebook: Slaney News Online: PUBLISHED in Enniscorthy by Corcoran Print & Design comment To advertise in the Slaney News please contact: 087-2403310 Disclaimer: Slaney News reserves the right to accept or reject any advertisement submitted for publication. Slaney News does not attempt to investigate or verify claims made in advertisements appearing in our publication. The appearance of an advertisement in this publication in no way implies endorsement or approval by us of any advertising claims or of the advertiser, its product, or services. Slaney News disclaims any liability whatsoever in connection with advertising appearing in this publication. Every effort has been made to ensure that all articles published in Slaney News are true and accurate but if any errors do occur please let us know and we will gladly rectify them in our next issue. Where details of future events are given in this publication, we recommend that you check these details directly with the organisers as event details may be subject to change. Slaney News strongly recommends seeking independent professional advice before acting on any financial, medical or other information contained in this publication. My team and I are ready to help you Of昀ce Open Weekdays: 10am-12pm, 2pm-4pm. Browne TD James Minister of State at the Department of Justice TD for Wexford Contactme Lower Church Street, Enniscorthy, Co. Wexford 053 9235046 @JamesBrowneTD
Tel: 053 9233593 Email: Donanore, Enniscorthy, Co. Wexford, Y21 X6V6 Open Monday – Friday 8.30am – 5.45pm Call today 053 9233593 TESTING OF ALL COMMERCIAL VEHICLES TACHOGRAPH & PLATING STATION ...................................................................... ENNISCORTHY WINDSCREEN CENTRE DIRECT BILLING TO MOST INSURANCE COMPANIES Vans & Jeeps Trucks & Trailers Buses & Ambulances Motor caravans Tractors Mixed fleets & other vehicle types SlaNey adS 10th April 2024 - Page 5 Mobile: 087-6736966 Email: COUNCILLOR Barbara-Anne Murphy Working hard for you We are currently looking to recruit the following: LGV CVRT Tester Or LGV/HGV CVRT Tester & HGV Mechanic, must have level 6 or National Craft Certificate. Suitable candidates should be able to work as part of a team, have good people skills, be able to work on own initiative Apply to: The Manager Windmill Autos Ltd t/a VTN Enniscorthy Donanore, Enniscorthy, Co. Wexford, Y21 X6V6

Please note the following:

To log a report regarding any dumping, street litter, road oil spills and potholes, ring Wexford Council on (053) 919 6000 or email:

You will receive a log number to refer to if you need to call again.

You can also ask to register for group or individual cleanups of your environment.



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It’s time to cultivate your summer dreams with our full range of flower and vegetable seeds in stock. We also have all the accessories you will need to help you have a bountiful supply of fresh veg and a tidal wave of summer colour. And don’t forget our huge range of patio and container plants and our serene range of houseplants. And now is the time to think about your summer and autumn flowering bulbs. Why don’t you call in store now and we’ll be more than happy to share our advice.

Kilcannon Garden Centre and Restaurant, Old Dublin Road, Enniscorthy. Tel: 053 92 35514. Find us on and

Enniscorthy Tidy Towns news...

Enniscorthy Tidy Towns is calling on everybody to please spare five minutes to complete its online survey. With over 2,000 Followers on Facebook and lots of good will throughout the town, the group would love to get some more volunteers on board.

Enniscorthy Tidy Towns aims to make Enniscorthy a cleaner and greener town but needs to grow its volunteer numbers. New volunteers would bring fresh ideas and enthusiasm to the group which is an open, transparent and welcoming one.

So please complete this survey (link below), it's anonymous, takes less than four minutes, and it would be hugely appreciated by the dedicated Tidy Towns group. IpQLSf7EO0NNdx9tPNgxliYJm_pH2OO


Enniscorthy Tidy Towns organised something a little different recently to celebrate 25 years of An Taisce National Spring Clean. They asked the excellent Know-How Media Agency to take to the sky to film their 30 volunteers helping out on 1st April to make Enniscorthy cleaner and greener.

The group expresses a massive thanks to Wexford County Council who collected over 18 bags of litter gathered at the Spring Clean event, and their thanks also to the dedicated volunteers who separated and recycled over 1,100 items.

Never ones to rest on their laurels, the group ’ s next event will be held on the River Slaney at Edermine where, thanks to, the group will be holding a clean up event on 21st April, details to be announced soon. This event is being kindly funded by the Local Authority Waters Programme. n



O’Rourke is now a Peace Commissioner
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Congrats to Enniscorthy Councillor John O’Rourke on his appointment last month as a Peace Commissioner.


This year’s Hope & Dream 10km and 10 mile event took place in Enniscorthy on Sunday, April 7th, with the option again this year of doing a virtual event. In total 1,675 people registered – an amazing achievment for the Hope Cancer Support Centre and all the volunteers who helped out before, during and after the event.

All proceeds will go to supporting Hope Cancer services such as support worker assessment and support, counselling, reflexology, massage, lymphoedema treatment, bra and prosthesis fitting, and support groups.

Check out and for more information on the event and check out the upcoming May issue of Slaney News for a full report and lots more photos. n

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month’s issue.
Full report and photos

Dedicated to restoring your strength, mobility, and overall well-being

I am Martin Conway, a devoted Neuromuscular Therapist dedicated to restoring your strength, mobility, and overall well-being. My medical journey commenced at 14, and since then, I've relentlessly refined my skills, amassing knowledge and certifications in medical care and sports therapy.

Rooted in compassion, my desire to aid others led me to the Order of Malta cadet corps, where I received training in first aid, advancing to advanced techniques. As a first aid trainer, I had the privilege of imparting life-saving skills to the public.

Navigating medical challenges transitioning to the R.N.L.I., I served as a first aider and local trainer in Wexford, facing and embracing the challenges

of providing maritime medical care, further solidifying my dedication to medicine.

Specialising in advanced therapies, diving into neuromuscular therapy, massage therapy, and orthopaedic sports massage, I trained under John

Sharkey at the National Training Centre, equipping me to address various musculoskeletal issues effectively.

A career in elite sports with roles in top SSE Airtricity League teams like Wexford F.C.'s academy, I handle prematch preparations, first aid, and physiotherapy, ensuring athletes' optimal performance. I've also contributed to G.A.A. teams under renowned physiotherapists like Donal O’Connor.

Empowering athletes and individuals beyond sports therapy, I offer personalised care to clients of all ages and backgrounds. Leveraging my expertise in skeletal, muscular, and nervous systems, I tailor treatments to each individual's unique needs, always striving for optimal outcomes.

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Direct Rosslare to Dublin train line under threat

Sinn Féin TD for Wexford, Johnny Mythen, has said that the train service between Rosslare and Dublin needs strengthening, not threats of closure.

Deputy Mythen was responding to reports that the National Transport Authority is currently considering a proposal to terminate the Rosslare service in Greystones or Wicklow town.

Teachta Mythen said: “For decades, Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael have been responsible for closing down and selling off our rail system. That is the very reason why the Rosslare to Dublin is currently running on a single line.

“The reality is that an enormous amount of funding will be required to bring the entire rail network back up to spec thanks to generations of underinvestment by Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael governments.

“But instead of threats to the Rosslare to Dublin service being run down, we need to see the service strengthened.

“We need to see a fleet that can adequately accommodate people travelling with luggage, and we need to see improved frequency, an issue which is constantly reported by constituents.

“The All-Island Strategic Rail Review called for increased frequency to support connectivity for lines such as the Wexford to Dublin line, and the use of a DART is understood to support that frequency improvement.

“But terminating the Wexford service in Wicklow or Greystones would be disastrous for commuters from Wexford as well as tourists travelling to and from Rosslare, particularly at a time when we are supposed to be encouraging people to use public transport and reduce car use.”

The proposal has also been strongly opposed by Gorey Senator Malcolm Byrne who has always been a strong advocate for the Dublin-Rosslare line.

Senator Byrne says: “These proposal by the National Transport Authority to force passengers to change trains in Wicklow is unacceptable and Iarnrod Éireann must make clear it will not

happen. I will continue to oppose. We need investment in the Rosslare line.”

Wexford town Councillor George Lawlor has also come out to voice his opposition to the proposal.

“The proposal to terminate the direct Wexford to Dublin Rail service raises serious and legitimate concerns about the accessibility and connectivity of transportation options for residents and visitors in Co. Wexford and is ‘a lazy response’ to consistent calls for improved services. This proposal must be vehemently opposed by all stakeholders in the County,” said Cllr. Lawlor. “Such a decision will have far-reaching consequences, affecting commuters, tourists, and businesses reliant on efficient transportation links.

“Tourists visiting Wexford using the rail link, a link known for its scenic beauty and vistas, will be deterred by the lack of a convenient rail connection to Dublin, limiting economic opportunities for the local tourism industry.

“I have met with my Labour party colleague Deputy Brendan Howlin on this issue and he has written to both the CEO of Irish Rail and the CEO of the National Transport Authority to ask what detailed engineering and timetabling alternatives have been considered. Deputy Howlin has also submitted a parliamentary question to the Minister for Transport for a direct political response on the matter,” said Cllr. Lawlor.

“Reducing direct transportation options to the capital will no doubt exacerbate traffic congestion and environmental concerns as people decide to use their car to travel directly. This goes against all efforts to promote sustainable transportation and combat climate change.

“In light of these considerations, it is imperative that decisionmakers thoroughly assess the implications of ending the Wexford to Dublin rail service. Alternative solutions, such as improved scheduling, increased investment in rail infrastructure, or collaboration with local stakeholders, should be explored to ensure that transportation remains reliable, efficient, and accessible for all,” he concluded. n

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Enniscorthy Rockin’ Food & Fruit Fest

All festival activity normally associated with the August Bank Holiday in Enniscorthy is moving to the weekend of Friday 3rd May to Sunday 5th May this year and very probably next year. This is to facilitate Ireland’s biggest festival, the Fleadh, taking place in Wexford town in early August.

With footfall of 50,000 visitors at last year’s festival, the Rockin’ Food & Fruit Festival is now recognised both nationally and internationally as a flagship event on the Irish festivals calendar.

The Rock ‘n’ Roll Town Weekender will also run over the May Bank Holiday Weekend attracting some of the best Irish and International Rock ‘n’ Roll bands to Enniscorthy. There will be bands on the Main Stage in the Market Square in addition to a gig trail at night. Some of the bands who will be performing are listed on the accompanying graphic on this page, one of the main headliners being The Rocketz who are travelling from the USA. For all the music updates, keep an eye on hy

The full programme has yet to be announced but we can confirm that the Festival will open on Friday evening, 3rd May, with a spectacular fireworks display on The Promenade kindly sponsored by the Riverside Park Hotel. And another highlight will be the appearance again this year of celebrity chef Kevin Dundon who will be just one of many expert chefs doing cookery demonstrations over the course of the weekend.

Keep and eye on: over the coming days where the full programme details will be published, and also check for updates on andfruitfestival and the Slaney News Facebook page. n

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Enniscorthy’s Rockin’ Food Festival returns May 2024

Get ready to rock your taste buds and groove to the beat as the highly anticipated Rockin' Food & Fruit Festival makes its triumphant return to Enniscorthy, now set to take place over the May Bank Holiday Weekend.

As County Wexford prepares to welcome over 700,000 visitors for the Fleadh Cheoil in August, the Rockin’ Food Festival will move from its usual date in August to the May Bank Holiday Weekend.

Festival goers can expect all their favourites including an Artisan Food & Craft Market, Live Chef Demonstrations and Food Workshops, Grow Your Own Workshops, Kids Activities, and much more.

The Rock ‘n’ Roll Weekender will run alongside the festival, bringing the best of Irish and international rock ‘n’ roll bands to Enniscorthy for locals and festival goers from Ireland and beyond to enjoy. While the format remains the same, this is now a separate festival organised by Richie Cotter, Eamonn Doyle and the members of the Southeast Rock ‘n’ Roll Club.

In 2023, the festival attracted an estimated 50,000 visitors to Enniscorthy and is the leading food festival in the region. Visitors come from all over the island of Ireland, UK and France to enjoy this firm favourite in the Irish festival calendar.

Food Fair: Indulge in a culinary journey like no other, as some of the country and county’s finest chefs, food vendors, and food producers showcase their talents and creations. From gourmet street food to artisanal treats, there's something to satisfy every palate.

Family-Friendly Activities: The Rockin' Food Festival is a celebration for all ages, with a range of family-friendly activities and entertainment on offer. From cooking demonstrations and interactive workshops to children's play areas and face painting, as well as the funfair on the Promenade, there's plenty to keep the little ones entertained.

Artisan Food & Craft Market: Discover a range of handcrafted goods at the festival's artisan craft market, featuring a diverse array of local artisans and crafters. From handmade jewellery to gourmet condiments and homeware, you're sure to find something special to take home.

Save the

Dates: Rockin' Food Festival 2024 – Opening with Fireworks on Friday 3rd May and closing on Sunday 5th May, 2024.

"We're thrilled to announce the return of the Rockin' Food Festival to Enniscorthy, now scheduled for the May Bank Holiday Weekend," said Eric Barron, Festival Chairman. "We look forward to our re-

vised date and see it as an opportunity to bring more visitors to the town in a traditionally quieter time of year than August.”

Follow on Social Media: enniscorthyrockinfoodandfruitfestival

Visit website for further information: n

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As we go to press, the Enniscorthy Forum Buildings Action Coalition is holding its second summit in the Riverside Park Hotel, Enniscorthy, running from Monday April 8th to Wednesday April 10th 2024.

The event entitled, ‘Metrics of Success: Securing Real Progress Toward Sustainable Buildings’ is being held both in-person and online and is being attended by people from all over Ireland and around the world speaking on many topics to do with Buildings and the Built Environment.

Minister Jack Chambers TD is due to address the summit in person today, Wednesday April 10th.

Under the dynamic leadership of Bun-

clody’s Barbara-Anne Murphy, the Enniscorthy Forum is a non-profit organisation established in Enniscorthy in 2021 with the support of the Irish government to accelerate attainment of the United Nations’ development agenda. The activities of the Enniscorthy Forum are conceived to support the UN 2030 Agenda and its Sustainable Development Goals, and more immediately, the objectives of the GlobalABC (Glo-

bal Alliance for Buildings and Construction) and the Buildings Breakthrough Target.

The Forum has an Memorandum of Understanding with The United Nations Environment Programme to raise the performance of the built environment.

The vision underlying the Enniscorthy Forum’s Buildings Action Coalition and the partnership with the UN is to deliver sustainable development by optimising building envelopes, building systems, information and communications technology (ICT), mobility, water and waste management, and other facets of an integrated built environment, thereby improving quality of life including health, poverty, resilience, social justice – as well as carbon emissions. n

SlaNey ad SlaNey NewS Page 16 - 10th April 2024 Full report and photos in next month’s issue of Slaney News.
Top left: Barbara-Anne Murphy (on right) with participants in the Enniscorthy Forum Buildings Action Coalition summit at the Riverside Park Hotel, Enniscorthy. Top right: Enniscorthy architect Tomas O’Leary addresses the summit. Above left: Enniscorthy’s Michael Bennett (on left) with fellow participants. Above right: Some of the international participants.

Recruiting for Community Visitor

Community Employment Programme Details:

 Scheme Category: Community Health Worker.

 Scheme Location: Community Information Services, 6 Main Street, Enniscorthy, Co. Wexford, Y21 YE16.

 Contract Type: Temporary.

 Job Type: Community Employment.

 Start date: To Be Confirmed. End date: To Be Confirmed.

 Hours per week: 19.5 Hours.

 Positions: 6.

Application Details:

Eligibility to participate on CE is generally linked to those who are 21 years or over and in receipt of a qualifying social welfare payment for 1 year or more, or 18 years and over for certain disadvantaged groups. Your eligibility will have to be verified by the Department.

You can register your interest by contacting Mr Patrick O’Shea at the email address below, or contact a case officer in your local Intreo Centre.

Applicants should supply suitable character references and be prepared to complete a Garda vetting application form.

Duties Will Include:

This is a developmental opportunity, no experience necessary. Accredited training will be provided to support your career.

Visitation of the elderly in their own homes and delivery of meals on wheels.

More Details Available From:

Mr Patrick O’Shea, Chairman, Enniscorthy Community Services Council CLG, 6 Main Street, Enniscorthy, Co. Wexford, Y21 YE16.


We operate the meals on wheels service for Enniscorthy town, we deliver Monday to Saturday. We are looking for Voluntary Drivers who can help us out, it is one hour a day for six days, once a year. If you can help, please ring us on 053-9233746 giving your name and contact details and you will then be contacted by us.

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Young Enniscorthy man highlighting the plight of the people of Gaza

Brian Corcoran is a 23-year-old Enniscorthy man with a strong interest in human rights, and is a member of Amnesty International Wexford Group.

Brian says, "I started my 3-day fast on Sunday, 23rd March, in my camp in front of Rectory Heights on the outskirts of Enniscorthy, and finished it on Wednesday, 26th. During this period I ate no food whatsoever, restricted total water usage/consumption to 2.5L per day, lived in a tent outside, as well as foregoing phones/ipads/TV/kindle etc, to try and get a slight insight into the inhumane hardship and suffering that Palestinians in Gaza experience on a daily basis, and not forgetting Palestinians in the West Bank who are suffering also.

"Amnesty International has condemned

Hamas for their targeting of civilians which resulted in 1,139 deaths. Similarly, Amnesty has condemned the killing of 33,207 Palestinians in Gaza, and condemned the 16-year-long illegal blockade of Gaza and the forced restricted access to humanitarian aid for those in need. We are on the precipice of a potential genocide,” says Brian, “with Gaza already undergoing a famine and children dying from hunger. I ask that you support my protest by signing Amnesty International's ceasefire petition to help increase national and international pressure on Hamas, the Israeli government, the EU and the UN to call for a ceasefire. Amnesty is also calling for states to ensure they are not directly or indirectly supplying arms to Israel to help prevent further bloodshed."

"The response I got from local residents

and passers-by was incredible and heart warming. My favourite moment was chatting to a man who's from Gaza and whose family is currently living there. My protest might make zero difference whatsoever but after that encounter I'm okay with that. As to show this Palestinian man that the Irish people are trying their best to support his family and the people of Gaza, who for the last six months have faced possible war crimes, starvation and inhumane living conditions, meant a lot to me."

Brian thanks all those who have supported his protest. And also mentions that Amnesty International Wexford Group is constantly looking for new members so reach out on instagram or facebook to join up.

Facebook: Amnesty International Wexford Group Instagram: Amnesty_wexford_group Email: n

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Check out videos of Brian’s protest on the ‘Amnesty International Wexford Group’ Facebook page.

Wexford’s solidarity with Gaza

Taking inspiration from the words of Martin Luther King Jr: "Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere", the Wexford branch of Amnesty International is holding weekly vigils in solidarity with the people of Gaza, highlighting the sav-

age, brutal and terrifying injustices occurring there every day, remembering all those killed in the Israel–Palestine conflict, calling for a permanent and immediate ceasefire and demanding Israel allow unimpeded urgent medical aid into Gaza.

The vigils take place at 6.30pm every Thursday at Redmond Square in Wexford town. All are invited to attend and show support.

Follow ‘Amnesty International Wexford Group’ on Facebook. n

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Wexford Strawberry Weekend launched at Wheelock’s

The 12th March 2024 marked the launch of this year’s Wexford Strawberry Weekend food and drink event which will be held on the 6th and 7th of July at The Village at Wheelocks.

Last year’s event attracted not only locals, but also visitors far and wide! Cyril Wheelocks says, “We would like to say thank you to every single pertson who came down to the village last year, you are amazing and we hope we'll see you again this year. We can't wait to do it all over again.”

Best of luck to Cyril, Margaret and team on the 6th and 7th July. yWeekend n

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OPPOSITE PAGE: Top: Pictured at the Launch of the Wexford Strawberry Weekend which will be held on the 6th and 7th of July at The Village at Wheelocks were Cyril and Margaret Wheelock, Verona Murphy TD who launched the Festival, and guests. Left: Members of the Wheelock family and Village at Wheelocks staff. Below far Left: Jimmy and Rosemary Sharkey. Below left: Cyril Wheelock with Carol Nolan and Aisling Ryan. Top left: Last year’s Wexford Strawberry Weekend. Top right: Cyril Wheelock and Joe Druhan. Above left: Cyril Wheelock, Clodagh Davis and Paddy Kavanagh. Above right: Isaac Wheelock, Cyril Wheelock and Trish Wheelock. Right: Roa Clarke, Margaret Wheelock and Kathleen Barden. Below left: Warren Wheelock, Liam Sharkey, Jimmy Sharkey, Kathleen Barden, John Reilly. Below right: Brenda Kavanagh, Cyril Wheelock and Verona Murphy TD who launched the Festival. Last year’s Wexford Strawberry Weekend.

Enniscorthy Credit Union Ltd celebrating 60 years serving the community

Enniscorthy Credit Union is celebrating 60 years serving its members this year having faithfully served 32,000 local members over six decades. Through its loans and saving accounts, Enniscorthy Credit Union has enhanced the lives of people across their common bond area during this time and has always been there for its members.

Enniscorthy Credit Union Limited (ECU) was founded following a public meeting held in the Bennett’s Hotel, Enniscorthy, on Monday 13th April 1964. The first board of directors decided to provide credit union facilities on Friday nights between 7.30pm and 8.30pm with accommodation being provided by the Governing body of the Athenaeum. At the end of its first year it had assets of £1,018-2-11 (1,018 pounds, 2 shillings and 11 pence); Loans to members were £447 which were financed by members shares of £987. Today it has assets of €230 millon, a measure of the success of the credit union and of the esteem in which it is held by its 32,000 members.

ECU used the Athenaeum accommodation until the 1st November 1968, when it moved across the street to a room let by Mr. P Bourke, Castle Street (see photo).

Friday night opening still applied with directors and other committee members acting as tellers. The credit union was growing from strength to strength and becoming a very popular place to save and borrow in Enniscorthy. In December 1970 the directors decided to advertise for a full-time employee and on the 11th of Janurary 1971 ECU hired its first employee, Mr. Seamus Comerford. This allowed the credit union to open to the public four days a week. Almost from the time of its inception, the directors harboured the ambition of purchasing a premises for credit union use. The board of directors acquired No.1 Market Square in April

1972. A Post Office Bond to the value of some £5,000 was cashed in to help pay for the new building. The new credit union office when renovated and fitted out was offically opened in October 1973 by the then president of Ireland Mr Erskine Childers.

In 1972 a second member of staff was employed, and this coincided with the purchase of an accounting machine which was the first sign of technology and computers in the credit union. By 1973 ECU had grown at a very fast pace, so much so that the demand for loans exceeded the shares and the board had to introduce restrictions. Loans were only issued as funds became available to service them and a waiting list was put in place for loans greater than £300 with members having to wait up to two months before they could draw down their approved loan. By 1975, as an indication of the continued growth, the Common Bond was extended for a second time from the original 3-mile radius to now include all within a 6-mile radius and to include Ferns. Then in 1981 the pinnacle of development occurred when the credit union invested in some of the most modern computer equipment available which enabled the members to receive an up-to-date balance on their account each time they carried out a transaction.

One of the first significant milestones from a financial perspective was reached in 1983 when the assets passed that magical onemillion-pound mark. In 1994, thirty years after the initial meeting was held to establish a credit union in the town, the membership had grown to a staggering 9,500 who held a combined savings of €6,844,681 and had loans to the value of €5,298,791. By now the credit union had become one of the great success stories of the community and had outgrown its premises in the Market Square. Following the Christmas break of 1994, ECU opened its doors to

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Office rented in 1968. The Athenaeum where the Credit Union started in 1964.

a brand-new, purpose-built building in Abbey Square, where it is currently located.

For the decade following the move to the new premises in Abbey Square, the growth of the credit union continued to rise at almost an exponential rate. Membership increased from 9,500 in December 1994 to a staggering 22,700 in December 2005, an increase of over 100 new members per month. During that same decade, many more changes took place when authorisation to act as Insurance Intermediaries was obtained. This allowed the credit union to offer many more services to its members such as Repayment Protection Insurance RPI, Death Benefit Insurance DBI, House Insurance and Travel Insurance. Regulation also took on a major change during the same period with the introduction of the new Credit Union Act 1997.

Early in 2010 another chapter began in the life of Enniscorthy Credit Union when proceedings began to carry out a transfer of engagements of Ballymurn Credit Union to Enniscorthy Credit Union and in early 2016 Enniscorthy Credit Union and Piercestown & District Credit Union entered talks about a transfer of engagements. Once the transfers were complete, the credit unions merged into one and there are now sub-offices in Ballymurn, Murrintown and Taghmon which provide services to the members across the heartlands of the county.

The past decade has seen continued growth of Enniscorthy Credit Union and the services offered to members. The Vision of Enniscorthy Credit Union is to support the community in their lifelong financial needs. Enniscorthy Credit Union remains, as always, a vital and accessible provider of affordable and ethical financial services. There are now 32,000 members with total assets of €230m and Enniscorthy Credit Union can look after almost all its members’ financial needs with its current account with Debit Mastercard®. It also has a highly successful Mortgage product, and offers Cultivate loans to its farming members. The loan book now stands at €54 million, and savings of €196 million, and it is going from strength to strength. Enniscorthy Credit Union also now offers a full suite of online services allowing members, by their own choice, to conduct most of their financial needs from the comfort of their own home, including opening an account and current account, applying for a loan and drawing it down. Enniscorthy Credit Union while now offering full digital services is committed to looking after its members and its staff in its offices and on the phones and will always be available. n

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First computer installed at Enniscorthy Credit Union in 1981. Abbey Square premises, Enniscorthy. No. 1 Market Square, the first premises owned by Enniscorthy Credit Union.

Enniscorthy looks to the Fleadh

Wexford town will be hosting the All Ireland Fleadh Cheoil in August 2024, when over 500,000 people will visit the town over the duration of the event, but there are potential benefits for Enniscorthy also and the local Enniscorthy Chamber of Commerce is preparing for what will be the biggest influx of visitors the county has ever experienced with Enniscorthy town and district benefiting considerably from the spin-off to be derived from such a large gathering.

The Chamber is compiling a directory of information of what is available in the town and district in terms of hotels, restaurants, fast food outlets, licensed premises, accommodation, car parks, camping sites, etc. which will be posted online as a guide for visitors. The directory will also include bus and rail times to and from Wexford, private bus hire, taxi services, entertainment venues,

places of interest to visit and any other information which may be of assistance to visitors.

Accommodation is expected to be in huge demand right across the county and persons with available housing, bed spaces or spare rooms, and willing to host visitors should contact the Chamber Office so as their names and telephone numbers can be posted online and will also be forwarded to the Fleadh Office in Wexford for posting on their website. One can also register accommodation directly at

Enniscorthy & District Chamber of Commerce can be contacted by email at: or by phone at 053 9232006.

Meanwhile, Cllr Aidan Browne has called on Wexford County Council to develop a programme of fringe events for Enniscorthy town when the Fleadh

is held in Wexford town this August. Cllr Browne commented, “It’s wonderful that Wexford town will host this year’s Fleadh festival. The streets of Wexford will be taken over with a celebration of traditional music and cultural activities. I’m calling on Wexford County Council to develop a programme of fringe Fleadh events. Enniscorthy is ideally located as many people attending the Fleadh may


local traders

The Trader Application process for Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann 2024 is now open.

Businesses interested in trading at this year's Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann, to be held in Wexford Town this August, can submit their applications from Wednesday, 20th March. The event offers a unique opportunity for traders, from food vendors adding unique flavours to the Fleadh, to craft makers infusing the town's streets with creative flair. Applications can be made via the event's official website.

Fleadh Cheoil is the world's largest annual celebration of traditional Irish music, language, song, and dance. It provides a platform for traders to showcase their products to a diverse and enthusiastic audience from all around the world. The event, organised by Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann and hosted by the local Fleadh Executive Committee, is expected to draw over half a million visitors to the sunny southeast.

Due to the high level of interest, only successful applicants will receive responses. Further information will be provided directly by the event organisers to the successful candidates. The closing date for applications is 19th April.

Interested traders may apply through the the link here:

For more information and to stay updated on Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann 2024, click here: n

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Fleadh Cheoil seeks local volunteers


Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann is scheduled to take place from 4th to 11th August 2024 in Wexford town, featuring its world-acclaimed programme of traditional Irish language and music events. The Wexford Fleadh Executive Committee is calling on the people of Wexford to volunteer to make this event a huge success for the town and county.

As the Fleadh Cheoil heads to the sunny southeast, over half a million visitors are expected to visit Wexford this August to celebrate Irish culture. With such an unprecedented number of attendees visiting the county, there is a real need for volunteers who can help during the Fleadh week, with many opportunities to lend a hand.

Volunteers will be asked to fill several roles, including:

Street stewards

Assisting at competitions

Members of the environmental/sustainability committee

Fleadh ambassadors

Volunteering at concerts

Social media support

Photography support

And other support roles for the Wexford Fleadh Executive Committee.

Cathaoirleach of the Wexford Fleadh Executive Committee and Interim Chief Executive of Wexford County Council, Eddie Taaffe, says: “We are thrilled to welcome Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann to Wexford this summer. It was clear from the start that Comhaltas Ceóltoirí Éireann and Wexford County Council share a mutual vision for the joy that is traditional Irish music and culture. The Fleadh will bring life and music to our

streets in a very inclusive way that all can enjoy. We are working together towards a truly memorable Fleadh Cheoil in August. In addition to the visible, structural supports being put in place, the people are a key part of the process. Volunteers are the heart of the Fleadh and will be instrumental in welcoming the world to Wexford. We are recruiting volunteers from all over our great county to lend a hand. By volunteering, people can make lasting connections with fellow volunteers, performers, and traditional Irish music lovers from across the globe while being a key part of this landmark event for County Wexford.”

The Wexford Fleadh Executive Committee welcomes everyone to sign up as volunteers for the Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann 2024! Get in on the action, and join the team! For more information and to sign up as a volunteer for the Wexford Fleadh Cheoil 2024, visit n

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Easter commemorations

The Annual Easter Monday commemoration organised by Enniscorthy Municipal District took place on Monday, 1st April. The ceremonies began with a Special Mass in St. Aidan’s Cathedral at 10am with readings, prayers and recitals read by Cathaoirleach of Enniscorthy Municipal District Cllr. John O’Rourke, Martin Whelan, Keith Doyle and Bridget O’Brien. The Mass concluded with a beautiful rendition of Boolavogue sung by Niall Wall.

The Reserve Defence Forces provided a Colour Party that led the parade to the Market Square. “It is an honour to speak with you this Easter Monday morning as we commemorate the 108th Anniversary of the 1916 Easter Rising,” said Cllr John O’Rourke. “Today we remember the sacrifices of the Irish rebels for us. We remember the unsung heroes, men and women who believed in the cause for Irish Freedom. These heroes blazed a trail for our freedom as an Irish nation. Today we owe it to the rebels of the past to honour the legacy of the Easter Rising to make Ireland a place where we honour the interest of our communities well into the future.”

The event was attended by the Ballindaggin Pipe Band, Enniscorthy Historical Re-Enactment Society, Martina Leacy’s School of Dance who performed and brought up the gifts at Mass, Judy Heffernan who read the Proclamation, Anthony Nolan who played the Last Post and the proceedings were concluded by the Ballindaggin Pipe Band playing Amhrán na bhFiann.

Cllr. John O’Rourke laid a wreath at the 1798 monument with a second wreath being laid by Cllr. O’Rourke and Martin Whelan at the Seamus Rafter monument in the Abbey Square. n

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in Enniscorthy




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Left, L-R: Claire Lawless (Enniscorthy Municipal District Manager), Cllr. Aidan Browne, Cllr. BarbaraAnne Murphy, Minister James Browne TD, Paul Kehoe TD, Cynthia Ní Mhurchú, Cllr. John O’Rourke (Cathaoirleach Enniscorthy Municipal District), Layla O’Rourke, Cllr. Jackser Owens, Johnny Mythen TD, Cllr. Kathleen Codd-Nolan, Senator Malcolm Byrne, Cllr. Cathal Byrne.
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St Patrick’s Day in Ennisco
St Patrick’s Day in Kiltealy
Above: Promoting the everyday use of the Irish language. Right: Cllr Cathal Byrne with St Patrick in Kiltealy.
Above Maria Nolan and Richie Cotter aka St Brigid and St Patrick. Right: Martin Murphy, Event Controller. Far right: The Colour Party leading the Parade.

The reviewing stand.

rthy St Patrick’s Day in Bunclody

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Cllr Barbara-Anne Murphy addresses the Bunclody parade, 17th March 2023. Below: Some of the colourful participants. Bottom: Kilrush-Askamore GAA Club. All pics courtesy of Senator Malcolm Byrne.
See more photos on pages 80-87

Enniscorthy St Patrick’s Day Parade winners

The St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Enniscorthy was one of the best in recent history with almost 30 groups and 700 people taking part in this year’s event.

The theme for the parade was ‘Mardi Fleadh’ which brought an abundance of colour, creativity, music, diversity, and fun to the parade.

Enniscorthy Municipal District, Wexford County Council and Enniscorthy Creative Places kindly sponsored prizes for the St. Patrick’s Parade this year.

The winners of the prizes were:

€500 Martina Leacy Dance Academy.

€500 Brazilian Community Group.

€500 Smyth’s Homevalue for the best Business Window Display.

Philomena Murphy won a €100 Hamper prize from Pettitt’s SuperValu, Ennis-

corthy, for the Best Dressed person on the day.

The Cathaoirleach of Enniscorthy Municipal District Cllr John O’Rourke presented the winners with their prizes and said: ‘Enniscorthy Municipal District are delighted to sponsor the prizes for this year’s event. On behalf of the Elected Members, I would like to thank all the participants in the parade and the business owners who entered the best business window display competition for their creativity and the great effort they put into this year’s St. Patrick’s Day.’

Deryn O’Callaghan, Creative Places Enniscorthy, who also sponsored the prizes, congratulated all involved in this year’s parade saying that the parade was a huge success.

A new St. Patrick’s Day Committee was formed earlier this year, and they organ-

ised a parade to be proud of in a short space of time.

Special thanks to Martin Murphy, Event Controller, who has been co-ordinating the event for many years and all the other volunteers on the committee who gave up their spare time for the benefit of the town including Mary Murphy, Maria Nolan, Sarah Kelly, Alfie O’Sullivan and Tom Boland, and to the staff of Enniscorthy Municipal District and Wexford Co. Council.

The organisers would like to extend their thanks to all the participants who took part in the parade and to the people of Enniscorthy and beyond for turning out with pride and wearing green on the day.

New members are always welcome on to the committee. If you are interested in joining, please email or call 053 9196830. n

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Left: Smyth’s Homevalue won €500 for the best Business Window Display.

Smyth’s staff and management Donna Dobbs, Tim Masterson, Noelle Murphy, Dermot and Betty Kavanagh, with St Patrick’s Day committee members

Tom Boland, Mary Murphy, Martin Murphy, Enniscorthy Municipal District staff Claire Lawless and Edel Nolan, and Cathaoirleach Cllr John O’Rourke.

Below: Brazilian Community Group winners represented by Andres Gethings, Tatiane Goncalves, Monique and Maya Goncalves.

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Right: Tia Robson and Martina Leacy of the prizewinning Leacy Dance Academy

Templeshannon Community Centre

Keep an eye on: mmunityandChildcareCentre

Enniscorthy Eastside Facebook page: 438762

Enniscorthy East Community Development:

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Vinegar Hill – A jewel in need of polishing

The second of a regular series by the team at Enniscorthy East Community Development looking at community matters in Templeshannon

OPW) is to manage and maintain the most important of Ireland’s historic buildings and heritage sites. They take care for over 700 historic and heritage sites across Ireland, including 70 sites which have visitor services. The purpose of Heritage Ireland is to work hard to give visitors from Ireland and abroad the best experience they possibly can.

Recently I checked out the Heritage Ireland website to see if Vinegar Hill was listed as a site managed by the OPW through Heritage Ireland. Surprisingly there is no mention of Vinegar Hill in any of the search options and it does not show the famous landmark hill on their site-finding map. Why is this iconic site and symbol of the struggle for Irish Freedom not even getting a mention?

There are a number of reasons.

In this age people expect a lot from their visitor experience. In our modern take-away culture a fresh coffee is a minimum requirement. After travelling long distances, tourists also expect good quality toilets to be available. Vinegar Hill as a destination doesn’t really provide either.

Even you are ok with not having any facilities, Vinegar Hill can be a very hard place to find. Signposting is woefully inadequate and residents along Hillview Heights often tell me of tourists calling to their door asking for directions. Indeed, for visitors to the 1798 National Rebellion Centre there is no link between the centre and the actual hill.

For tourists that do find their way to the entrance then they must navigate a very tight drive to the car park. Herein lies another problem, if you are a coach or tour operator then you can’t access the car park as the laneway that leads up to it is too narrow.

Walking around Vinegar Hill is lovely and if you live nearby it’s a great place to walk and take in the beautiful views. However, for the tourist, a visit can be disappointing. Recently I met a couple of German tourists on one of the walks and they stopped me to ask where were the paths leading to? They seemed genuinely confused by the lack of any kind of marker post or signs.

This all adds up to a significant tourist attraction punching way below its potential. Coach tour operators actively avoid the site and it’s not feasible for schools to take groups there on field trips or school tours either. What a pity when we think of the spin-off economic benefits these tours could bring to the area and indeed the town at large. Also, from an education perspective, a visit to Vin-

from all over the country. Indeed, our local citizens would also benefit from opportunities to work in a visitor centre as well as working as professional tour guides.

Enniscorthy’s business community has recognised the spending power that tourists bring to this lovely town. We may not have the larger retail chains that some of our neighbouring towns have, but we have a unique and historic place that tourists love.

I’ve often heard it said that if Vinegar Hill was in any other town in Ireland it would be a major national tourist site. In many ways Vinegar Hill was the most significant occurrence in Irish History. The United Irishmen rebellion was a forerunner to the Act of Union which brought a period of stability to the country. But it also inspired the next generations of Irish Nationalists to continue the struggle for freedom. A little over 100 years later Enniscorthy would again be to the fore as one of the few towns in Ireland that fought for freedom at Easter in 1916.

The United Irishmen leaders were visionaries, driven by a dream of a country that would be free of injustice and oppression. Utilising our National Monument now requires a bit of vision to honour the great deeds and sacrifices of all those who gave so much on that fateful day in 1798. When are we going to have a visitor centre near the site? A state-of-the-art visitor centre will help Enniscorthy showcase the tremendous history and pride that we all have in our local town.

Finally, returning to the Heritage Ireland website. One of the recommended sites that caught my attention was a place called “Scattery Island”. Located in the Shannon estuary not far from Kilrush in Co. Clare, I was surprised to learn that it is believed to be the burial place of our own St. Senan. Described as an ”extraordinary man”, St. Senan was born near Scattery Island. As in the case of Enniscorthy, he established a monastic settlement there in the 6th century. I wonder what the great saint would feel now if he saw how his famous settlement in Enniscorthy is effectively closed and hidden from view. This great saint, from whom the River Shannon takes it’s name, certainly wouldn’t be impressed with how the parish he founded centuries ago has been neglected in recent years.

If you are interested in making Templeshannon a better place to live for all its residents, feel free to come along and get involved. We meet once per month and our next meeting is on Tuesday, April 23rd, at 7.00pm in the Templeshannon Community Centre.

Keep up to date on Facebook by clicking on this link: n

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Oilgate to Rosslare Motorway could be done in eight years

A huge 800-metre bridge to span the River Slaney. It’ll be about a kilometre upstream from Ferrycarrig bridge carrying the traffic to and from Rosslare for everywhere. Think of the Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy bridge across the Barrow. It’ll be that big. It’ll be in one span crossing from Ballyharran/Killowen townlands on the Crossabeg side to Barntown. Because the area is a SAC (Special Area of Conservation), and the river can’t be touched, it’ll cross the existing roads, the Slaney and the railway line not far from the Irish Heritage Park.

A few kilometres away, there’ll be a huge ‘up and over’ footbridge to cross the New Ross Road Roundabout (Maldron Hotel). There may even be a flyover there too. This will be a massive intersection between the N25 and N11. It’s being specially designed to ease the flow of traffic to and from Rosslare Europort to Cork and Waterford.

Active travellers will be pleased that there will be three or maybe four Park and Ride centres between the Maldron, Duncannon Road Roundabout and Killinick from where you may walk, cycle, run, drive a wheelchair or get on a bus to anywhere, to Dublin if you want, or locally to the magnificent, ever-developing Johnstown Castle or Rosslare Strand for the birds, the golf, the food and the beach. The route will run, safely and segregated, along beside the new motorway/dual carriageway.

And then there’s Ballygeary, or Ballygerry or Ballingeary and Ballygillane and Churchtown, better known together as Rosslare Harbour or Rosslare Europort, where work is progressing on sites spread over the port’s 50 acres, soon to be 100 acres.

Will transform the county

Those are some of the features of the N11-N25-M11-M50-A1 Road corridor, final 30km leg of the Belfast to Dublin to Rosslare Harbour M11 motorway/dual carriageway expected to start construction in five years.


An excellent video and narration of the route of the N11/N25 Oilgate to Rosslare Harbour motorway is given on the dedicated Wexford County Council website:

Also on the website is a video and narration broadcast during Covid 19.

See also the Transport Infrastructure Ireland website:

Construction will be fast and, all going well, it’ll open two or three years later. Every aspect of this project will be big and new and great. It will be huge and it will be historic.

It will be built for Wexford County Coun-

cil where engineers and staff are burning the midnight oil to make it happen. Engineers with hard hats and theodolites have been figuring out the alignments along the 30km route from Oilgate or Oylegate. A source told us the alignments could be sorted more or less by

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September. The entire project will cost half a billion euro or thereabouts (at 2020 prices, according to Transport Infrastructure Ireland or TII), most of which, taxpayers will be relieved to know, will be funded by the EU.

It will transform the once neglected and forgotten Model County and it will impact on the entire south of Ireland, connecting it to the entire Trans-European Transport Network European Road grid, (TEN-T) of roads, railways, airports and water.

James Whelan, the long experienced chartered engineer/senior roads engineer, native of Wexford town, is the project liaison officer for the entire N11/N25 Oilgate to Rosslare project. His aide de comp, Áine Roche, based in Wexford County Council at Carricklawn, is also from Wexford town. Working with them is Bratislav Dimitrijevic, the project engineer, who was engineer on road projects in his native Serbia and on the massive Marrakesh to Casablanca motorway in Morocco, North Africa.

No more traffic snarl-ups

Gone will be the growling snarl-ups of traffic puffing tonnes of carbon emissions into the air at Rosslare village, Kilrane village, Tagoat and at the roundabouts at Ashfield Cross junction with Rosslare Strand.

To get to or from the N25 or Enniscorthy, or Dublin, no more stopping at the Rosslare Road Roundabout (at Meadows and Byrnes/Kelly’s Café /McDonalds), the Duncannon Road Roundabout (at Whitford Hotel), the New Ross Road Roundabout (at the Maldron Hotel), slowing at the notorious Ferrycarrig speed limit 60km honey trap or at Tagoat, Kitestown Cross, Kyle Cross, Oylegate village and Edermine. The villages will be by-passed and the cross-roads or junctions will be re-configured to allow a seamless flow of traffic.

Although it took our researcher 28 minutes to travel the 28 kilometres (coincidence) from Oilgate to Rosslare Harbour, Google Maps said it takes between 40 minutes and 53 minutes. Of course, on busy mornings, traffic crawls at 70km per hour from Rosslare up to Kyle Cross. The new motorway may cut that time to 15 minutes on a fine day.

The travel times of the juggernauts delivering produce from the West of Ireland, through New Ross along the N25 to London and Paris, will also be cut. The new motorway will intersect with the N25 at the New Ross Road Roundabout (Maldron Hotel), cutting the time to and from Cork, Waterford, Kilkenny or anywhere else in Leinster, Munster and the West.

Noise will be faint whispers

They will be faint whispers, hurtling, powering along at perhaps 120km toward their destinations, because within six or seven years, they’ll all be electric. Or hydrogen! They won’t disturb the rabbits in the fields, the birds in the trees or the fish in the Slaney.

Leaving Enniscorthy/Oilgate, the motorway route will dodge and weave, leaving Oilgate village to the west, veering through a revamped Kyle Cross, moving slightly inland to cross the new bridge over the Slaney, arriving back at ‘a reconstructed ‘Maldron’ roundabout. Then it’s on to the Whitford, and bypassing the present ‘Meadows’ roundabout at Drinagh (the Rosslare Road Roundabout) before veering left and on to Rosslare.

The cars and trucks and buses hell-bent for Rosslare from Dublin or from Rosslare to Dublin or from Cork or Waterford or Kilkenny or Carlow or Wicklow or the UK or mainland Europe, will be almost noiseless on the beautiful new bridge crossing the Slaney valley up to Enniscorthy and further.

Bratislav Dimitrijevic, the project engineer, who lives in Kilkenny but is based in Tramore House in Waterford, came down to Wexford town in his own time to address 17 or so scientists about the project. He spoke at the Wexford Science Café, hosted by Brian Trench, (retired head of the school of communi-

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Bratislav Dimitrijevic and Brian Trench. New Ross Road Roundabout at the Maldron Hotel, Wexford. Building work at the Europort. Harbour works.

cations in DCU) in Wexford town library, and gave an exclusive update and progress report to those present.

Progress is good – next is Phase 4

He revealed to the assembled seers and sages that the Wexford County Council team had now reached Phase Three of the seven defined phases in the project. It’s making steady progress. He had anticipated adjustments but not the many adjustments to be quickly made following the arrival of the government’s Climate Action Plan last year.

He would not be drawn on specific times for opening of the new motorway/dual carriageway when he addressed the attendance. However, he gave clues from which a number of experts there guesstimated a projected timeline of ten years. Sceptics around County Wexford, basing their opinions on history, said it could be 20 years and a cost of billions. However, James Whelan, Senior Roads Engineer, and Áine Roche and Wexford County Council and Bratislav and TII will be doing their best to prove them wrong.

One of the seers and sages at the Wexford Science Café, who obviously came from a wealth of experience in engineering and civil service, suggested to Bratislav that to ensure progress on the project, he and fellow engineers should find shelter from the politicians and the bureaucrats and focus only on the engineering. There were nods all round.

Could be only 8 years away

Our own research has found from talking with officials and engineers behind the scenes that the entire N11 Oilgate to Rosslare motorway/dual carriageway project could be completed from now in April 2024, within seven to eight years, making it 2032. That would be five years to cover An Bord Pleanála (estimated

two years), EU project approval, Government approval (our Government have to sign it off) and an EU-wide tender process. And three years to construction and opening. But it all depends. Bratislav explained that a disruption or an objector from anywhere or a Government policy change could set it all back. By how long, he wouldn’t say.

Map C is the chosen route. On a sevenphase timescale, the entire project is progressing steadily forward at phase three (Phase 3), which he said is good. The concept and feasibility phase (Phase 1) and the options selection phase (Phase 2) have gone well. The statutory process (Phase 4) is next. Compulsory Purchase Orders and agreements have to be made with 380 landowners along the 300-metre corridor of the 30 m route.

Every landowner should be registered for CPO (Compulsory Purchase Order) he said and those who do not, may not benefit. So far, landowners he met are eager to hurry it up and get it done.

Huge economic and social benefits

The entire Oilgate to Rosslare motorway project will create huge economic benefits including creating thousands of quality jobs (pick a figure: 10,000, 20,000), creating inward investment, cleaning the environment and generating growth. The effect will transform the county and the entire south-east region, economically, socially and culturally.

Meanwhile, Irish Rail, the operators of Rosslare Harbour/Rosslare Europort, are working to make the port the digitised gateway to Europe and the renewable energy centre of the universe. The investment overall is said to amount to perhaps another half billion.

The N11, to become the complete M11, will eventually hit Rosslare Harbour at a

point far to the left of the present Ballygillane Roundabout, where the current Customs post is. It will run along by the bay, bypassing the existing village, to connect with the access to the ships in the port. It too will be transformed beyond current recognition. That is happening already. What will happen to the existing Customs buildings hastily built, near the Ballygillane roundabout, to cope with Brexit, nobody is telling.

It “All Depends”

An ORE (Offshore Renewable Energy) hub, with a projected investment of €350 million, is planned alongside the entrance to the port. That will be transformative, capitalising on the existing opportunity of offshore wind energy, and piping it to the national grid. It will have enormous economic impact, and eventually may allow Ireland to become independent of gas and nuclear.

For walkers and cyclists, a Greenway, which is a separate project, will run from Rosslare Harbour to Rosslare Strand, five km away. The present Irish Rail station will stay as is.

Coastal erosion is not an issue here with Irish Rail building seawall protection along by the railway line.

In the context of major business developments in Enniscorthy town and in New Ross, together with the establishment of the South East Technological University and developments in Wexford town including the Trinity Wharf project, the N11/N25 motorway project will cause unparallelled prosperity throughout county Wexford and the South-East.

Bratislav told the Wexford Science Café members that achievement of it “all depends”. One objector and one disrupter could set the entire project, which cost generations of hope, investment, debate and energy, back for a long time.

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– M.F.
Rosslare Harbour and ORE Hub plan. Ferrycarrig.

Update on riverside trail in Enniscorthy

The rehabilitation of the Riverside Trail is proceeding well and is expected to be completed prior to 26th April.

As at the beginning of April, the Urrin Loop on the south bank is complete and the contractor is preparing to start realigning the Urrin Loop on the north bank. The intention is to move onto the Blackstoops Link (The Banks) after these works.

Wexford Co. Council apologises for any inconvenience caused, but based on the accompanying photos the work to date is looking good and the current inconvenience should be well worth it. n

Enniscorthy’s new armed Response Unit

Wexford TD and Minister of State for International Law and Law Reform at the Department of Justice James Browne has confirmed to the Slaney News that the development of a purpose-built Regional Garda Armed Response Unit to be located at Enniscorthy Garda Station is progressing through the tender stages.

Commenting on the development, Minister Browne noted that, “The OPW is leading the tender assessment in recent months. I am confident that a contract will be awarded in the coming weeks before construction gets underway in the summer of this year.”

“This is a very positive development to have a regional armed response unit located in Enniscorthy town. Enniscorthy is ideally centrally located for this unit whose role is to rapidly response to armed threats by organised crime gangs and other threats to public safety. I want to thank Chief Superintendent Derek Hughes and his management team for supporting this development and Minister O’Donovan for his support.” n

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Above and below: The Urrin Loop on the south bank (the path leading from the footbridge over the Urrin at the end of the Prom up to Munster Hill) has been totally transformed.

Enniscorthy Tidy Towns is looking up! Are you?


Last year was a historic year for Enniscorthy, for the first time ever the town won silver in the Tidy Towns competition. This achievement would not be possible without the support of local businesses, residents, and Wexford County Council.

In March 2024, Wexford County Council organised for an experienced Tidy Towns adjudicator to visit Enniscorthy to meet members of the group to share insights and advice. The group was delighted to welcome Ann O’Leary to our town for a walkabout of Fair Green, the Peace Park, Main Street, Cathedral Street and Pig Market Hill. The group then carpooled to Templeshannon, Spring Valley and the historic Vinegar Hill.

“The town has a lot going for it”

The adjudicator admired the unique layout of Enniscorthy, with narrow streets like Slaney Street and Templeshannon giving a medieval feel. Elsewhere, wide streets and squares with handsome, imposing buildings were noted as giving a European feel.

However, the adjudicator commented there are many buildings where the upper stories lack attention to detail, colour and in general do not look as good as the ground floor units.

The adjudicator commented how even a small paint job or adding window boxes to upper stories would improve them. She suggested identifying focal point buildings, e.g. at the entrance to key shopping streets or on the corner of squares and focusing improvements here. Attractive buildings and shopfronts that she praised included Glamour’s “elegant simplicity”, Reid’s colourful window boxes on upper stories, and George's hairdressers.

“Approach roads let us down”

Approach roads form the first impression of the town, and first impressions last. Unfortunately, Enniscorthy’s approach roads are disappointing, as per the adjudicator.

Road signs and commercial signage were highlighted as unat-

tractive or in poor condition and need to be removed, repaired, or cleaned. The adjudicator suggested prominent business premises on the approach roads could plant attractive boundary hedging, such as native pollinator friendly or beech hedging with year-round foliage, to screen fencing, yards, and hard lines from view.

The adjudicator also mentioned how some boundary walls along Summerhill from Blackstoops roundabout past the cemetery could be improved with some power hosing or painting. The longstanding, vacant ‘Minch Norton’ building was also mentioned as an area which would benefit from having the windows and hoardings painted a bright colour. The green moss-

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Left: Pollinator friendly section of the Orchard Peace Park, Enniscorthy. Above: Spring bedding in the town. Tidy Towns’ Áine Doyle and Jonathon Hughes with experienced Tidy Towns adjudicator Ann O’Leary (centre), on Vinegar Hill.

stained roof was also highlighted as a particular eyesore whilst driving into town.

A series of service poles near Treacy’s Hotel and Templeshannon dominate the skyline with multiple cables trailing from them. The adjudicator recommended these be highlighted to the council and utility providers to see if they could be rectified.

It was fantastic for the group to get the perspective of an experienced adjudicator. Many of these very constructive comments took Tidy Towns committee members by surprise. The group regularly picks litter with eyes downcast, which means we very often forget to cast an eye at the upper levels of our historic town. We must look up!

Enniscorthy Tidy Towns is encouraging residents, landlords, and businesses to look up, look around, look afresh at Enniscorthy, and see what you could do to your building, street, or housing estate to make it more attractive. Some cleaning, planting, or painting could make an enormous difference. A small splash of colour, biodiversity or artwork would also impress any adjudicator – particularly during the summer when we typically get judged!

Community Involvement

The Tidy Towns competition is funded by the Department of Community and Rural Development, so community involve-

ment, collaboration and inclusivity are crucial. Enniscorthy Tidy Towns invites all businesses, residents, groups, and schools in the town to contact them on to highlight your contribution to the town with details of current or future projects that would help the town’s application.

A picture speaks a thousand words

A good application form with attractive photos gives an adjudicator their first impression of Enniscorthy before even setting foot in the town. If you, or anyone you know, has suitable photographs of any projects completed that they are willing to share, please email them to Enniscorthy Tidy Towns at

Before and after photos showing projects and cleanups, with dates the photos were taken, are particularly welcome. Photos should tie in with the eight categories: 1. Community Involvement; 2. Streetscape & Public Places; 3. Green Spaces & Landscaping; 4. Nature & Biodiversity; 5. Sustainability; 6. Tidiness & Litter Control; 7. Residential Streets & Housing Areas; and 8. Approach Roads, Streets & Lanes.

Enniscorthy Tidy Towns looks forward to everybody helping to make Enniscorthy a cleaner, greener, attractive, award-winning Tidy Town. If you are interested in getting involved, please make contact via social media or email n

Enniscorthy Tidy Town’s National Spring Clean event, 1st April 2024, about 30 dedicated volunteers tidied at Gimont, Abbey Square, Fairgreen and Quarry Park.

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A small splash of colour makes a big difference. Looking good. Pic: Courtesy of Enjoy Enniscorthy.

Davidstown Confirmation

Davidstown Church 15th March 2024

Make a positive decision today to stop smoking

We Can Quit is a free stop-smoking programme, offering group support, one-to-one support and stop-smoking medication (NRT). Contact details and start date are in the above graphic.

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Davidstown School Confirmation in Davidstown Church, 15th March 2024. Twins Darragh and David Doyle with their Godparents Bridget (left) and Ciara (right).

Sustainable Enniscorthy

This month the local Sustainable Enniscorthy group looks at Air Quality in Enniscorthy.

Well Done Everyone – Air Quality in Enniscorthy is Improving!

In October 2022, we talked about air quality, just as the new solid fuel regulations were coming into operation. We outlined the impact of poor air quality on our health and highlighted that the key sources of air pollution in a town like Enniscorthy are solid fuel burning and pollution from traffic.

In fact, recent research has highlighted that older Irish people who use an open fire as their main means of heating their home are much more likely to have a respiratory disease and even lighting for cosiness could also pose a health risk.

Enniscorthy has received some unfortunate headlines over the past few years for the quality of our air, particularly over the winter months when cold weather, still nights and high levels of smoky fuels and waste being burned saw a dramatic increase in air pollution within the town.

For those of us out walking, running or cycling or training at our sports clubs these events are very noticeable although we don’t necessarily link these to impacts on our health.

The new solid fuel regulations mean that only low-smoke fuels should be available to purchase across the country, compliance from retailers in Enniscorthy has been largely excellent but is this helping improve the quality of the air within the town?

We’ve looked at the data from which provides the information on air quality within the town and forecasts up to three days in advance.

If you would like to get involved in Sustainable Enniscorthy or be kept informed of our initiatives, please follow us on Facebook or Instagram.

Contact us to get involved!

Figure 1:

Source: EEA, "Healthy environment, healthy lives" 2019.

The good news is that in general air quality has improved between October and March this year compared to the same period since 2020, as most people choose to burn low-smoke fuels.

Over 1,300 people a year in Ireland die prematurely from the impact of air pollution from solid fuel burning. In 2023, the Government set some ambitious targets to reduce air pollution in Ireland in our Clean Air Strategy. These are aligned to the most recent World Health Organisation guidelines to make sure that we see a reduction in the number premature deaths and other health risks.

The most recent data indicates that Enniscorthy is in line to meet these new targets up to 2030, however a lot more work is needed to make sure we can hit our 2040 targets so what can we do to help?

 Only light the fire if you need to – if you have other ways to heat your home, use these first.

 Clean your chimney at least once a year – the summertime is a good time to get this done.

 Only use low-smoke fuels – these should be the only fuels available to buy, however we know that some people are still using turf and smoky coal.

Turf is one of the most inefficient fuels you can use in the fire – it takes almost 3 times the amount of turf to heat a room compared to low-smoke coal and creates more dust and pollution within your home.

Smoky coal is illegal, it appears to burn hotter but you will need to use more over an evening than low-smoke fuel. It is also very polluting for your home.

The spring and summer are good times to look at things you can do in your home to improve your energy efficiency, so you don’t need to use as much fuel next winter. Simple things can make a big difference and are not as expensive as a retrofit like: Servicing your boiler, bleeding radiators, getting windows and doors serviced and increasing your insulation.

Remember what you burn in your fireplace or stove impacts on your health and the health of your community, we’ve made some great progress in just one year so let’s keep it up so we never see Enniscorthy’s poor air quality in the news again! n

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monthly column
Impacts of Air Quality on Health.

To mark the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination on March 21st, 2024, the Members and staff of Wexford County Council officially launched ‘Wear Red Day’ at the Council meeting on the 11th March.

Speaking at the launch, Cllr. John Fleming, Cathaoirleach Wexford County Council, said, “We are sending out a strong message that we as communities and people of Wexford, welcome diversity, celebrate it, and take a stand against racism in all forms.”

Wear Red Day is part of the Show Racism the Red Card anti-racism programme, which is operated in Ireland by the Immigrant Council of Ireland. The programme provides educational resources, workshops, training and awareness-raising activities for primary and secondary schools, youth groups, work-

Showing racism the red card!

places and sporting stakeholders nationwide. Everyone in the community is invited to get involved.

“Wexford County Council is proud to stand in solidarity with those experienc-

ing racism and will continue to work with all our partners to build strong and inclusive communities in Wexford,” added Amanda Byrne, Acting Director of Services. n

Elected members and staff of Wexford County Council showing racism the red card.
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Wexford Independent Alliance is launched

A packed Riverside Park Hotel was the venue for the official launch last month of the Wexford Independent Alliance – a group of ten independent candidates brought together by Verona Murphy TD to contest the upcoming local elections in Co. Wexford’s five districts on 7th June.

Around 700 people heard Deputy Murphy tell the gathering that the ten candidates will listen to, and work hard for, local commnunities. “The Alliance will offer the people of Wexford a real alternative to the current party politics who are not working

for our county. Party politics must be challenged at local level to ensure stability and prosperity for people alongside sustainability for communities throughout Co. Wexford.”

The guest speaker on the night was Senator Michael McDowell SC, former Minister for Justice, who called for increased powers for local authorities.

MC for the event was former Minister and TD Ivan Yates who interviewed each of the candidates, one by one, on the impressive stage specially set up for the event.







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Majella Wall Paddy Kavanagh Cyril Wheelock


Inis Corthaidh Confirmation

15th March 2024

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Top left: Katie-Rose Ni Cheallaigh with her family. Top centre: Nathan Redmond and Marie Carton. Top right: Anne, Aeibhin and Sean Ward. Above: Waiting for the Confirmation ceremony to start. Far left: Alex, Katherine, Pippa, Denis and Lissie Callaghan. Left: Katie-Rose Ni Cheallaigh. Below left: Brooklyn, Doireen, Aoife and Katie-Rose waiting for the Confirmation ceremony to start. Below centre: Brian, Aoife and Eileen Walsh. Below right: Aoife Walsh and gran Wendy.
Above left: Confirmation boy James Caomhanach with parents Garret and Lisa and family. Above right: Blathnaid, Declan, Tiernan, Cathron and Adhran Cullen. Left: Deirdre, Cian, Brian and Laura Kehoe. Right: Kieran, Fiachra, Tracy, Isabelle and Sophie Dagg. Below left: Louise, Kevin, Paul, Niamh and James Armstrong. Below right: Nathan Redmond and his family. Bottom left: Harry Roban and family. Bottom right: Aidan O’Shea and family.
St Senan’s School
8th March 2024
Top left: James, Andy and Bridget Connors. Top centre: Anthony Kennedy-Flynn. Top right: Kathleen O’ Connor, Pamula O’Toole and Billy and John O’Connor. Above: Niamh, Eddie, Darragh, Clodett and Tyghe Kenny. Left: M J Dobbs and family. Below far left: Kai Kavanagh and Mary Murphy.
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Below left: Lisa, Sophie and Colm Garry. Top left: Confirmation boy Paddy Cashman and his family. Top right: Kennett, Shancee and Nicole Farrell. Above: Catherine, Soad, Frankie and Savannah McKeown. Above right: Stephen O’Reilly, Mia and Carmel Dobbs. Right: Luke, Kay and Elisabet Connors. Left: Kian and sister Macey Lee Carlaon. Below left: Dylan, Kian and Danielle Kelly and Macey Lee Carlaon.
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Below right: Linda Kirwan, Steven Sheridan and Daniel Kirwan.

€630k in additional funding for two Co. Wexford organisations supporting victims of domestic violence

Wexford TD and Minister of State for Law Reform James Browne TD has confirmed that over €630k in additional funding will be distributed to two County Wexford organisations supporting victims of domestic violence.

Minister Browne outlined how, “My Department of Justice has made it a priority to tackle Domestic, Sexual and Gender Based Violence. I’m delighted to confirm that Wexford Women’s Refuge and the Wexford Rape Crisis Centre will both benefit from additional funding from my department to support initiatives that will support victims of crime. The funding comes in addition to a landmark provision of approximately €4.5 million towards a new building for Wexford Women's Refuge, which is currently under construction.

“For Wexford Women’s Refuge, a grant of €560,897.31 will enable the refuge to increase its staff and meet its operating costs. The staff roles will include a project leader, finance role, childcare role, support worker, play therapist, team leader, household staff and relief staff. Meanwhile a grant of €70,000 to Wexford Rape Crisis Centre will fund the employment of two part-time counsellors, a finance worker and overhead costs.

“My Department colleagues and I understand the need to support victims through the provision of relevant supports and services. Today’s Government funding will play its part in enhancing these important supports for the good work led by Wexford Women’s Refuge and the Wexford Rape Crisis Centre.” n

Award for Linda

To mark International Women's Day last month, Linda O'Rourke received an "Inspirational Woman" award from Wexford Local Development.

The award was richly deserved as Linda is very much the heartbeat of the local parish and wider community.

Left: Linda with Julie Grant of Wexford Local Development. Below: Linda receiving congratulations from members of the local community n

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This year the GRA (Garda Representative Association) conference seems to have caught the attention of the general public more than other years.

Issues that received an airing generated varying degree of comment. The problem that members of the force are leaving due to the cost and availability of accommodation in Dublin is a real and present problem retaining staff. The teaching unions are repeating this claim as a blockage to recruitment. This has being a major concern for many sectors and has been flagged in recent years. The failure to plan and adjust the national special strategy to correct this imbalance is a fundamental flaw in government policy. The chickens have come home to roost.

The debate on the new uniforms raised a few eyebrows. It is unclear how the uniforms were not tested properly to see if they were suitable. The bottom line is if they are not suitable they may be tweaked to be more appropriate.

The debate on pensions and conditions of work is always a factor when appealing for much-needed new recruits.

The most difficult issue to resolve is the request for mandatory prison sentences for assaults on first responders and if this is not dealt with correctly it may cause trust issues between the public and the force well into the future. We


all have heard of many harrowing and disgusting stories about attacks on first responders. This again has been going on for far too long and has not been addressed. Attacks on Gardai are commonplace, statistics can bear this statement out. There are areas where firefighters need a police escort to attend fires as they may be lured into a trap for attack. Nurses and doctors run the gauntlet so much at weekends that they are considering vetting patients at

Cameras don’t lie and they protect all parties involved so what are we waiting for!

the entrances with security for their safety. All this requires tough action but let’s get it right the first time. You see freedom is a basic right, a civil right at that. Taking that right away from someone cannot be left to a blanket law that may be used and abused like what is experienced in the American justice system. It is a felony to assault a police officer and it has been used to attach a second charge to strengthen a charge sheet. Often it transpires that it may be an interaction between a person and the officer while in the act of an arrest and the claim of resisting arrest. This was not why the law was put on the statute and is clearly an abuse of a well-intended law to protect first responders. As a result of this type of action, respect and trust has been eroded in the police and the system.

If implemented it must be fit for purpose and stand up to scrutiny. This is where the cart was put before the horse. I understand by listening to certain comments that the implementation of bodyworn cameras is some time away as they have to check out various types all over the world. This is double talk and really a means to slow this process down and perhaps scuttle it all together. I believe that in order to create a workable law, with public support, it must go hand in hand with body cam evidence. Cameras don’t lie and they protect all parties involved so what are we waiting for! n

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Cllr Murphy fighting for local democracy

Councillor Barbara-Anne Murphy, Member of Wexford Co. Council, travelled to Dublin last month to address the Seanad Committee Public Hearings on the Future of Local Democracy. In her address, Barbara-Anne spoke of many of the changes made to local government over the last 30 years –almost all which centralised power back to government and reducing power and decision making of Councillors for their local area.

Leas Cathaoirleach, Senators, elected colleagues, I didn’t come here today to complain, but I do want to bring several matters to your attention.

Over the last 30 years or so we have seen ‘improvements’ to local government in Ireland. From Better Local Government to removal of Dual Mandate to the most recent, Putting People First. It hasn’t resulted in better local government.

We still have Oireachtas members deeply engaged in the activities of the Local Authority.

And I cannot see who has benefitted from Putting People First. Towns that lost their town councils and financial autonomy didn’t, nor did the councillors or our constituents.

And as for the ending of the Dual Mandate, do any of you truly believe that TDs and Senators are happy to leave the activities, decisions, and day to day issues of the County Council to the elected Councillors? In our democracy, on our electoral cycles, that is most certainly not the case.

Over the 20 years many services have been taken away from local authorities – limiting our relevance. Higher Education Grants, Refuse Collection and issuing Driving Licences and so on. More powers have been given to the executive – taken away from elected Councillors.

Planning legislation – the OPR hugely restricts our decision making in many areas when we are drawing up our County Development and Local Area Plans

To devolve or disperse power and control requires trust. But sadly, it does not appear that National Government trusts Local Government. Certainly not Local Councillors.

Much of Wexford County Council’s funding comes from Central Government – and the accompanying ‘terms and conditions’ are very prescriptive and restrictive in how that money is spent.

As I said there is a lack of trust in the decision-making capacity of councillors and council staff.

For example – if we know in Co. Wexford that it costs €200,000 to provide a social home in Enniscorthy, why can’t the funding be provided for housing units at that level and if the costs go beyond that level, then permission must then be sought from the department? We have professional architects, engineers etc at national level, checking and rechecking the work of professional architects, engineers etc at Council level. It is utter madness and a waste of resources.

The current methods of funding local government appear to me

to be designed to keep the poorer councils poorer, and better off councils richer.

In Co. Wexford, we don’t stand a chance of ever raising sufficient funding to run our county as we would like, and this is despite us raising RPT by 15% locally to fund economic and community development projects and increasing commercial rates.

Our roads need massive investment and yet we do not receive any extra funding to take that need into consideration.

In a 2022 report from the Local Government Audit Service, it was found that almost half of Co. Wexford roads were in a ‘structurally distressed’ state. That includes National Primary, National Secondary and Local Roads – the result of decades of underfunding by the state for Co. Wexford’s 96,000 km of roads.

And this year’s allocation is not going to rectify the situation. And we all know that potholes in roads is one of the most regular complaints to our councils across the country.

The Joint Policing Committees are being discontinued and their replacement will have vastly reduced number of elected councillors, let’s just say, I’m dismayed. It is further erosion and diminishing of the role of the elected councillor.

There are 34 members on Wexford Co. Council of whom six are women. Getting more women to stand for election is proving more difficult than I ever thought possible. It is something we are working at through our Wexford County Council’s Women’s Coalition. We have been proactive working with See Her Elected and Women for Election.

When we took a ‘flip it’ photo in the council chamber last summer, one of my male colleagues asked me why bother? ‘Sure we don’t need 28 women on Wexford Co. Council’ and ‘Why do you want to give away your seat?’ My reply was that I didn’t. I wanted to give away his seat. He didn’t laugh. If the elected member of the County Council’s role is going to continue to be diminished, why would a woman want to put herself forward?

Central government must learn to trust local government and to devolve more powers, give us more autonomy.

Devolution or dispersal of power requires trust. We must restore trust to allow Co. Councils to do the work they can and should be doing. n

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Town Centre First Plans

The Minister for Rural and Community Development Heather Humphreys TD, and Minister of State with responsibility for Local Government and Planning Kieran O’Donnell TD, published the first ever Town Centre First plans for 26 towns across every county at a National launch event in Adare on Wednesday 28th February 2024.

The Plans which were developed in consultation with local communities represent the vision of local people for their area and contain proposals for a diverse range of projects such as redeveloping derelict sites, creating community parks and walkways, boosting SME and tourism potential, and protecting historical landmarks.

New Ross was the designated pathfinder town for County Wexford and along with the other pathfinder towns was officially launched at the event. This Plan was launched locally in December of last year and is available to view on the Wexford County Council website or physical copies can be viewed in the Tholsel or New Ross Library.

Cllr Anthony Connick as chair of the New Ross town centre first team was delighted to represent New Ross at the launch along with fellow town team member Sean Connick, and they were joined by Deputy Chief

Executive of Wexford County Council Eamonn Hore, Director of Services with responsibility for Town Centre First Liz Hore, and Town Regeneration Officer Mick McCormack.

Cllr Connick welcomed the launch and pointed out that this strategic document can be used by business and community groups to strengthen their applications for funding supports and will also be used by Wexford County Council in applying for future funding and he was proud to be associated with this urban regeneration plan.


Wexford County Council has been awarded €30,000 to complete a Town Centre First Plan for Courtown/Riverchapel. This is the first announcement on a suite of supports that will be available to County Wexford under the Town Centre First initiative. Wexford County Council will be applying for further funding in the coming weeks under this suite of supports for towns and villages around the county. The suite of supports are:

1. Town Support Fund whereby up to three towns/villages in County Wexford will receive up to €10,000 to establish a Town Centre First Team.

2. Town Centre First Plan whereby one town will receive €30,000 to complete a Town Centre First Plan (Courtown/Riverchapel being the Wexford Town).

3. Project Development Measure. Two towns will receive up to €50,000 to develop a project to shovel-ready status.

Welcoming the news, Cllr Pip Breen (pictured) Cathaoirleach of Gorey/Kilmuckridge Municipal District saw this as a great opportunity to move Courtown/Riverchapel forward and was looking forward to the collaboration that informs a Town Centre First Plan. n

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Cllr Pip Breen, Cathaoirleach of Gorey/Kilmuckridge Municipal District.

Carraig Briste & Killegney Early

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Below: Mary and her class from Carraig Briste join with Orlagh for St Patrick’s. Below right: Killegney join Orlagh and Ciara. Above far left: Freya and Ava with proprietor Orlagh Doyle. Above left: Isla and Zoe with Orlagh and Amy. Above right: Max and Noah. Below left: Ruby. Below centre: Carraig Briste and Killegney join Amy, Anne and Orlagh.

Years celebrate St Patrick’s Day

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Above: Celebrating St Patrick’s with Orlagh. Above right: Maria’s class from Killegney celebrating St. Patrick’s parade with Orlagh. Right: Forest School. Above: Celebrating St Patrick’s in style. Right: Ellie. Far right: Clodagh. Below right: Forest School. Below far right: Hayley and Harvey.

A new era for Enniscorthy’s Waterfront Pool & Leisure Centre

The Board of Enniscorthy Swimming Pool and Leisure Complex Limited (trading as The Waterfront Pool & Leisure Centre) was pleased to confirm last month the operational transfer of the Pool & Leisure Complex to Wexford County Council.

The Board and Management Committee of the pool's operating company formally stepped down last month, having served close to 160 years between them and after securely transferring management to the Council.

The current Board and Management Committee are among the leisure centre's existing founding committee and have been involved since the charitable company was first established in 1995 with the ambition of building a swimming pool for the people of Enniscorthy and surrounding communities. By mid-1999, the Company, with support from the local community and Department of Sport, had successfully secured significant funding to design, construct and open a state-of-the-art leisure centre in the heart of the town, designed by renowned architect Duncan Stewart.

Following a successful 24-year operating period, a review was undertaken by the Board in 2023 in terms of succession planning. Arising from this review, the Board entered discussions with the Council about taking the Centre under the custody of the local authority – with the expressed intention of ensuring the complex continues to serve the people of Enniscorthy and District into the future. Discussions with the Council have been ongoing for several months and concluded last month with a formal transfer process.

Importantly, there will be no significant changes for staff or current users of the pool. The ex-Board members and Wexford County Council will work together during the next number of months to help ensure a smooth operational handover.

Cllr John O’Rourke (pictured above), Chair of Enniscorthy Municipal District, said, “The Waterfront Pool & Leisure Centre is a valuable and much-used amenity for the people of Enniscorthy District. I am pleased that Wexford County Council recognises the impor-

John O’Rourke, Chair of Enniscorthy Municipal District.

tance of the facility to the town in stepping in to take over operations. I would also like to recognise the significant voluntary contribution made by the original committee and Board members since 1995, that has brought us to where we are today. I look forward to many more successful years of operation.”

Carolyne Godkin, Director of Services for Enniscorthy Municipal District, said, “I am delighted to confirm the transfer process of The Waterfront Pool & Leisure Centre, Enniscorthy, from the current Company Directors to the Council was completed.... On behalf of Wexford County Council, I wish to formally thank the previous committee members and outgoing Board members, whose vision, ambition and resilience for Enniscorthy resulted in the opening of a state-of-theart centre in 1999, in the heart of the town. The outgoing Board members, Dan Kickham, Noeleen Redmond, together with Management Committee members Mary Carroll-Murphy and David Murphy, have contributed an immeasurable amount of time as volunteers and have operated a twenty-five year success story for the town.” n

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A monthly column by GreenTechHQ


Steve Jobs said, “The most powerful person in the world is the storyteller. The storyteller sets the vision, values, and agenda of an entire generation that is to come.”

At the South East Sustainability Cluster held in GreentechHQ we were fortunate to hear from three expert visionaries – Eleanor Saunders, Ronan Power and Michael Griffin who shared their stories around green tech and sustainability. Hugely interesting and great networking, the cluster is becoming an important platform for discussion and collaborative thinking.

Thank you to County Wexford Chamber for their continued support, very appreciated.

Our next cluster is on Wednesday 24th April - see you there! #southeastsustainabilitycluster

GreenTech HQ: Pioneering a Sustainable Future for South East Ireland

In the heart of Enniscorthy, in the Technology Park, here we are! Hoping we stand as a beacon of innovation and sustainability. After all, within Enniscorthy and YOUR community, GreenTechHQ is Ireland’s first and only Sustainability Innovation Hub. For that the community can be proud.

This not-for-profit incubation hub, set up by Ed Murphy using his own funding, an example of putting money where one’s belief is. GreenTechHQ is not just a testament to the future of business; it's a vibrant, thriving community where the seeds of sustainability are nurtured, and local businesses are empowered to grow and thrive – we are here for you, your local start-up and SME businesses, our door is open to you.

Empowering Local Businesses with Sustainable Innovation

At GreenTechHQ, our mission is clear: to infuse resilience, productivity, and innovation into scaling SMEs, with a keen focus on ushering in new sustainability opportunities. But what sets us apart is our approach to achieving this mission. We offer tailored programmes in collaboration with a broad range of national and international partners. We’ve managed to establish ourselves as a centre of excellence that not only supports local businesses but

also elevates them to compete on a global scale. Join us to become part of our and your collaborative journey.

From Tangent Ideas Workspace to DogPatch Labs and Skillnet Innovation Exchange, our collaboration with top-tier specialists ensures that the support provided is not just comprehensive but cutting edge. This means local businesses in the South East aren’t just surviving; they’re thriving, innovating, and leading the way in sustainability.

A Vision for Sustainability in the South East

Sustainability is not just a buzzword at our headquarters; it’s a commitment – a vision for a greener, more sustainable future for the South East and beyond. Situated in Ireland’s first commercial Passivhaus building, we hope we are a living example of sustainable practice in action. This dedication to sustainability is more than just an operational ethos; it’s a blueprint for the businesses we support.

We know our objective is bold but achievable: to transform the South East into a region synonymous with innovation, business excellence, and sustainability. By fostering a collaborative business habitat, we aim to provide a distinct advantage to regional enterprises, ensuring that initiatives are transformative and add significant value to the existing regional infrastructure.

Engaging the Community: A Call to Action

Community engagement is the lifeblood of sustainable change, and we are eager to weave this ethos more deeply into the fabric of the South East. Whether you're a local entrepreneur, a budding start-up, or a resident passionate about sustainability, there’s a place for you at GreenTechHQ.

Imagine a community where local businesses not only succeed but do so by championing sustainable practices. A community where innovation is not just for the few but accessible to all. This is the future we envision for the South East, and it's a future that can only be achieved with the support and engagement of the local community.

A Sustainable Future Together

As we continue to pioneer sustainable business practices, our doors are always open to those who share its vision for a greener, more prosperous South East. Whether through participating in its tailored programmes, collaborating on sustainability initiatives, or simply engaging with our activities, there are myriad ways for you to get involved.

The journey towards sustainability is a collective one, and we hope to stand at the forefront, ready to support, innovate, and lead the way. Together, we can transform the South East into a beacon of sustainability and innovation, setting a precedent for Ireland.

In the spirit of sustainability and community, we invite you to join this transformative journey. Let's innovate, collaborate, and engage – for the future of our region, our businesses, and our planet. n

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Recent South East Sustainability Cluster event held in GreenTechHQ in the Enniscorthy Technology Park.

Enniscorthy’s new tailoring and alteration shop

On Saturday 9th March

Elena Turcan opened her new shop on Enniscorthy's Wafer Street, next door to Astor, specialising in tailoring, alterations, dressmaking, bridal wear etc and working with a range of materials including leather, curtains, zips etc.

One of our accompanying photos shows a group of eight women modelling at a charity fashion show in Wexford all wearing fashion sketched, designed and tailormade for each of them by Elena. In total Elena made 18 outfits over a two month period for that show.

Follow ‘In Stitch’ on Facebook to keep up with all the happenings at Elena's new and exciting venture.

Open Saturdays and Mondays 10am-4pm and Tuesdays to Fridays 10am to 5pm.

Elena may also open soon on Sundays if there is sufficient demand.

Elena can be contacted on: 085-1978485. n

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Davidstown Confirmation Davidstown Church 15th March 2024 Below L-R: 1. Aoife Murphy. 2. Louis, Roisin, Zoe, Barry and Rhys Murphy. 3. Mirsana, Viktorisa, Gabrisla and Ansa Bakaric. 4. Claire, Sarah and Patrick Wickham. PAT’S PICTURE PARADE OUT AND ABOUT WITH PHOTOGRAPHER PAT O’CONNOR 087-2870006
Above left: Three generations of the Mernagh family, Jim, Charlie and Paul. Above centre: Pa, Harry, Denise and Luke Redmond. Above right: Ryan and Samantha Murphy. Above: James, Darragh, David and Orlagh Doyle. Above right: Naomi Kinsella, second from left, with her family. Right: Confirmation girl Sarah Wickham with godparents Paddy Furlong and Lisa Doyle Wickham.

Enniscorthy Community College

Great range of courses available at Enniscorthy Community College. Check them out at: n

Information sharing

Wexford County Council has developed a free online information sharing portal for not-for-profit community owned facilities to inform the public and promote usage. You can submit facility details at: n

Oulart storytelling house

At Bygone Days Storytelling House in Oulart, a great welcome awaits all, with good music, songs, stories and plenty of craic, tea and refreshments served. Eircode: Y25 YP70. For details of upcoming events keep an eye on: n

Enniscorthy Toastmasters

The group meeets fortnightly on Tuesdays in the IFA Centre, Enniscorthy, at 8pm. All welcome! for updates. n




Enniscorthy Library events

For upcoming Enniscorthy Library events see: n

Enniscorthy Christian Fellowship

Enniscorthy Christian Fellowship would like to invite all women over 16 years of age to its free Ladies Easter Craft Night on Friday 8th March at 7.30pm behind Bellefield Design, Reachability, Enniscorthy.

Tea and cakes will be served. All ladies are welcome to join.

For more information contact Lorna on 085 1367341 or check out the website n

Enniscorthy Women Walking Together

The group meets Monday - Thursday at Eurogiant Carpark at 7pm and also has a WhatsApp group. Check out their Facebook page: ‘Enniscorthy Women Walking Together’. n


Enniscorthy Tidy Towns volunteers meet on Sunday mornings to collect litter and tidy up around the town. Volunteers are always needed and welcomed!

So if you are sick of seeing rubbish on your road, street, estate or elsewhere in the community, please contact: 053 923 6518 or email

Keep up to date on Facebook:

Let's all help to make Enniscorthy cleaner and greener! n

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Change at the Top

We have a change at the top. Or have we? That is the question. Simon Harris takes over from Leo Varadkar as leader of Fine Gael and many are wondering as to what, if any, difference it will make to them. In his acceptance speech, Simon Harris indicated that it was his intention to return Fine Gael to its roots. Well, the roots of Fine Gael are in the farming and rural community far removed from the more recent incarnations of Fine Gael under the leadership of Leo Varadkar and his merry men and women. The political agenda pursued by people like Helen McEntee and supported by all Fine Gael TDs in the Dáil, because of the Whip system, is as far removed from the traditional party supporters as Brisbane is from Dublin. There are a few Fine Gael TDs like Michael Ring of Mayo and indeed Paul Kehoe of Wexford who are probably not that far removed from the original party base, but the party has been effectively taken over by a city or urban left-of-centre group who only use the name of the party as a flag of convenience. The same could be said for a lot of Fianna Fáil Oireachtas members of course.

Fine Gael lost a wonderful opportunity here which I believe that they will live to regret. Other than Paschal Donohoe, the only other viable candidate would have been Heather Humphries. She’s rural and comes from a background which is pure Fine Gael. They would also have burst the Sinn Féin dream of Mary Lou McDonald being the first woman Taoiseach. She would also have resonated better with the old stock Fine Gael voters. The younger crowd that Harris and Varadkar before him are chasing are lost for the moment. They will go Sinn Féin simply because they see it as different. Although it is not. However, that’s for another day.

Local Elections

June 7th is the day on which we will select our new or not-so-new county councillors. At this remove it is difficult to make any specific predictions in relation to the various districts because we haven’t seen a full slate of the candidates yet. One thing is sure though and that is the impact that Verona Murphy is going to have in County Wexford.

View from the Centre

A local contributor, based in the centre of the county, looks at life today in Co. Wexford and beyond

Her Wexford Indepenent Alliance group is going to grab a significant number of seats on the 34-seat council. She has ten candidates in the field and many of them are well known faces and community activists in their own areas.

Pat Barden of New Ross is the only outgoing councillor who incidentally headed the poll last time out and should have an excellent chance of being returned.

Paddy Kavanagh, a former county councillor, standing in the Gorey-Kilmuckridge District, must also be regarded as a strong candidate.

In Wexford, Raymond Shannon, a very active campaigner on mental health is-

sues, deserves a chance of serving as a councillor as he is already doing much of the work of a public representative.

In Gorey, Jimmy Fleming, who has been around the block as a member of Sinn Féin and Fianna Fáil, is also a former councillor and is one to watch.

The other candidates for the Wexford Independent Alliance are Marty Murphy, New Ross; Nicky Boland, Gorey; Cyril Wheelock, Enniscorthy; Jack Barden, Rosslare; Michelle O’Neill, Wexford; and Majella Wall, Enniscorthy.

Only time will tell as to how many of the above will be elected but I’m sure that the political parties are viewing this development with some concern.

Next month we may be able to look at the makeup of some of the other teams going forward for election.

Celebrity Candidates

I see that Fine Gael has selected Nina Carberry as one of its candidates to contest the European Elections in Ireland Midlands–North West constituency. She joins another celebrity candidate Maria Walsh whose claim to fame before the last European Election was that she was a former Rose of Tralee. The value of this type of candidate is that they have name recognition and that seems to be all the qualification required to get on to the ballot paper. We, of course, live in a democracy, so far at least, and it is free to anyone to put their name forward as a candidate in any election. The electorate should be discerning however. Your vote is a very valuable tool in the armoury of the vast majority of us who only get our say in these things once every five years or so. Therefore, we should use it very wisely indeed and not throw it at someone whose name is familiar for some reason other than working for the people at some level or other.


Last month I asked the following question which I had seen on the Chase television programme. “In football , if a direct free kick goes straight into a team’s own goal, what is awarded to the opposing team? A. Goal. B. Indirect Free Kick. C. Corner.

Answer: A Corner Kick to the opposing team. n

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Ferns Diocescan Pilgrimage 2024 to Lourdes

Bishop of Ferns Ger Nash has sent out information to the parishes about the upcoming Pilgrimage to Lourdes in May this year. See extract from his letter opposite.

It should be noted that applications for the assisted pilgrims closed on 15th March. This is the first year that assisted pilgrims will return to Lourdes since Covid so the diocese is looking forward to welcoming them on the journey. n

Honda 50 enthusiasts’ Hope Centre fundraising

Members of South East Honda 50 Club will undertake a 32 County Charity Trip from Sept 5th to Sept 8th 2024 in aid of the Hope Cancer Support Centre in Enniscorthy.

Keep an eye on their Facebook page for more details and how to contribute: ?id=61556764437539 n

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Dr Karina Daly is new CEO of WWETB

Waterford and Wexford Education and Training Board (WWETB) is pleased to announce the appointment of Dr Karina Daly to the post of Chief Executive of WWETB. Karina has been the acting Chief Executive since October 2023, following the retirement of Kevin Lewis.

WWETB provides education and training to over 28,000 students in the areas of primary and post-primary education, further education and training (including apprenticeships). It employs 1,850 staff across Waterford and Wexford.

Since late 2016, Karina has worked as Director of Organisation Support and Development (OSD) with WWETB. One of her key roles has been leading the preparation and overseeing the implementation of the WWETB Strategy Statement as well as leading the key corporate areas of HR, Finance and Corporate Services. Karina has previously worked at University College Dublin, as Research Services Manager. She subsequently held the role of Deputy Director, and laterally Director of Assessment for UCD and was responsible for managing assessment processes for the university.

Karina holds a PhD in modern Cultural History from UCD, and a Masters in Business Studies from the Smurfit School of Business. She has written two academic books based on her PhD studies.

We extend our congratulations to Karina and wish her every success in her new role. n

FCJ Bunclody students learn to produce quality beef

FCJ students Hollie-Mae Power Sinnott and Grace Warren recently exhibited at Croke Park for the prestigious Certified Irish Angus Schools Competition.

The competition, supported by ABP and Kepak, challenges students to rear five Irish Angus calves and learn about the care and attention required to produce quality beef for consumers. Five out of the forty-three exhibiting schools that best demonstrate an understanding of the project along with innovative ideas will be presented with Irish Angus calves at the National Ploughing Championships in September 2024. n

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Dr Karina Daly L-R: Hollie-Mae Power Sinnott and Grace Warren from FCJ Bunclody exhibiting at the 2024 Certified Irish Angus Schools Competition. Photography by Chris Bellew, Fennell Photography.

NZEB upskilling programmes now available in Enniscorthy

Future Skills in Construction – Nearly Zero Energy Building (NZEB) upskilling programmes are available now through Waterford Wexford Education and Training Board (WWETB).

Aligned with Government policy to tackle climate change, a suite of NZEB (Nearly Zero Energy Building) courses, designed to upskill those working in the construction sector are available at the NZEB Centre of Excellence, operated by Waterford and Wexford Education and Training Board (WWETB).

Delivered locally through WWETB, in partnership with industry and supported by SOLAS, the further education and training (FET) authority, NZEB courses offered by the training centres in Enniscorthy and Waterford are tailored to meet the specific skills needs of industry.

These short, flexible training programmes aim to provide the workforce with the skills to deliver on the Government's climate action and retrofit targets by equipping learners with knowledge and awareness of NZEB standards under current Building Regulations, so that they can develop and maintain energy

efficient buildings.

Delivered at little or no cost for employees, NZEB and Retrofit programmes are easily accessible to industry workers with time spent off-site for upskilling minimised through short, flexible, hybrid courses with evening and weekend provision available across the majority of programmes.

SOLAS Chief Executive Andrew Brownlee said: “The FET sector continues to play a key role in driving the national training infrastructure available to deliver on critical NZEB and retrofitting commitments in how we build and maintain houses.”

“The collaborative partnership between SOLAS, the NZEB Centres of Excellence and the construction industry has been key to the provision of this targeted suite of NZEB and Retrofit programmes that

Civil Defence included in new pilot programme

Local Fianna Fáil Senator Malcolm Byrne has said he was pleased to receive confirmation from Tánaiste and Minister for Defence Micheál Martin that a pilot programme is progressing with three Civil Defence Units, including the Wexford unit, which is intended to test the process of holding stocks of a single additional controlled drug (Midazolam), which is used at paramedic practitioner level as emergency treatment for seizures.

The three civil defence units (Wexford, Kilkenny and Laois) will be registered up to paramedic practitioner level by HPRA (Health Products Regulatory Authority). Senator Byrne said, "I very much wel-

come this update from Tánaiste Micheál Martin. It's particularly important to the Wexford unit in the context of supporting Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann, which is set to take place in August of this year.

"I understand that the pilot programme will commence as soon as the registration is complete. The programme will be monitored for a period of six months. It is intended that lessons learnt will be shared with the wider Civil Defence and the Local Government Sector in the context of finalising a national strategy.”

Senator Byrne also acknowledged the importance of Civil Defence and thanked all the volunteers for the enormous contribution they make to their communities. n

meet the current and future skills needs of the sector. Our pledge at SOLAS is to equip every learner with the right skills to play their part in the climate action response.”

Dr Karina Daly, Chief Executive of WWETB, concluded: “We are delighted to be partnering with SOLAS to deliver on this important agenda and address a real need. WWETB has taken the lead nationally in developing the specifications for NZEB and continues to work closely with its partners to ensure that these courses are relevant and crucial for anyone looking to upskill or future-proof their careers in construction.

“WWETB will continue to invest in the delivery of these important courses. Developed with industry for industry, courses are easily accessible to reduce time spent off-site, with many offered outside of working hours.”

Discover NZEB and Retrofit courses by visiting or find out more at:

Check out: jpuS2MhK4 n

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Senator Malcolm Byrne

Extended Cath Lab service at University Hospital Waterford

Wexford TD and Minister of State for Law Reform James Browne has welcomed the approval of additional staff to facilitate an expansion of cardiac services at University Hospital Waterford (UHW) to cover weekends.

Minister Browne noted how the approval of 19.5 Whole Time Equivalent (WTE) staff positions “will facilitate the extension of Cath Lab hours to a 7-day, 8am to 8pm service. The current service in place across both Cath Labs at UHW is 8am to 8pm, Monday to Friday. The next big step is the provision of a weekend service, which is now a reality following confirmation of these additional staff posts.”

“This allocation of additional staff includes two Senior Cardiac Physiologists, a Consultant Cardiologist, two

Clinical Nurse Managers, two Senior Radiographers, eight General Staff Nurses as well as Clerical Officers (2),

Porters (1.5) and a Health Care Assistant (1).

Minister Browne referenced how “continuous engagement with Government colleagues including the Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly TD and HSE managers has made a massive difference to securing these extra staff posts. Combined with the impending extension of hours, these additional staff members will likely cover 90% of all potential cases, once in place. This is obviously very reassuring to the public and is also an indication of how far we have come since the days of the 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday service.

“These changes will make a significant difference for healthcare services in the south east and it’s a further example of the government delivering for County Wexford and the south east.” n

Daffodil Day at Enniscorthy Credit Union

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Minister James Browne TD Above: 22nd March 2024, Liz, Sinead and Mary presented the Daffodil Day collectors with a donation on behalf of the staff of Enniscorthy Credit Union.

Section 75 of Roads Act 1993 Temporary Closing of Roads

Notice is hereby given that Wexford County Council intends to close the road listed hereunder to vehicular traffic on Sunday 19 May 2024 from 08.00 to 19.00, to facilitate the holding of the New Ross Aims Choral Festival.

Road Closure: South Street (L4500-3), New Ross, from its junction with Little Michael Street to its junction with Charles Street.

Alternative Route: From Charles Street to South Street (north) to Mary Street to Barrack Lane to Michael Street to South Street (south).

Alternative routes will be signposted. Local access will be facilitated. Any person wishing to object to the closing of this road should lodge the objection in writing via the online portal or in hard copy before 12.00 noon on Tuesday 23 April 2024 to the County Secretary, Wexford County Council, County Hall, Wexford.

Alt 75 d’Acht na mBóithre 1993

Dúnadh Sealadach na mBóithre

Tugtar fógra leis seo go bhfuil sé i gceist ag Comhairle Contae Loch Garman an bóthar atá liostaithe thíos a dhúnadh do thrácht feithicle Dé Domhnaigh 19 Bealtaine 2024 ó 08.00 go 19.00, chun reáchtáil Fhéile Chórúil Aidhmeanna Ros Mhic Thriúin a éascú.

Dúnadh Bóthair: An tSráid Theas (L4500-3), Ros Mhic Thriúin, óna hacomhal le Sráid Mhichíl Bheag go dtí a hacomhal le Sráid Shéarlais.

Bealach Malartach: Ó Shráid Shéarlais go Sráid Theas (ó thuaidh) go Sráid Mhuire go Lána na Beairice go Sráid Mhichíl go dtí an tSráid Theas (ó dheas). Cuirfear comharthaí ar bhealaí eile. Éascófar rochtain áitiúil.

Ba chóir d’aon duine atá ag iarraidh cur i gcoinne dhúnadh an bhóthair seo an agóid a dhéanamh i scríbhinn tríd an tairseach ar líne nó i gcóip chrua roimh 12.00 meán lae Dé Máirt 23 Aibreán 2024 chuig Rúnaí an Chontae, Contae Loch Garman. An Chomhairle, Halla an Chontae, Loch Garman.

Section 75 of Roads Act 1993 Temporary Closing of Roads

Notice is hereby given that Wexford County Council has decided to close the roads listed hereunder to vehicular traffic on Sunday, 21 April 2024 to facilitate the holding of the Pettitt’s Wexford Half Marathon.

Road Closure 1: L3505-2 – The Faythe (Billy Kelly Pub side of the road ONLY), from the northwest boundary wall of the Faythe Guest House to the start of the fork in the road opposite Mulligan’s Funeral Home.

Times: From 09.00 to 14.30 on Sunday 21 April 2024 (Road Closure 1).

Alternative Route: From Faythe Lane to Kevin Barry Street to Parnell Street to Trinity Street to William Street to The Faythe to Faythe Lane.

Road Closure 2: L3507-1 & 2 (Coolballow Road) from its Junction with the Rosslare Road (R730) to the Rathaspeck Roundabout.

Times: From 10.00 to 13.30 on Sunday, 21 April 2024 (Road Closure 2).

Alternative Route: From the Rathaspeck Roundabout to Piercestown to Levitstown to the Rosslare Road via the L3042, L3043, N25 and the R730.

Alternative routes will be signposted. Local access will be facilitated.

Notice of Grants under the Community Recognition Fund 2024

Wexford County Council, in conjunction with Wexford Local Community Development Committee (LCDC), gives notice of the launch of the next round of grant funding through the Community Recognition Fund 2024.

The Community Recognition Fund (CRF 2024) is funded by the Department of Rural and Community Development, to recognise the huge efforts made by local communities in welcoming and supporting new arrivals from Ukraine and other countries.

A total fund of €1.6 million has been made available by Wexford LCDC for the CRF 2024, to support medium to large-scale projects for not-for-profit community or voluntary groups in County Wexford. This new round of funding will develop projects that will deliver long term benefits to those living in areas identified as having significant levels of new arrivals and where there is a clear need for investment identified. The focus of the 2024 scheme is on projects of greater scale and impact.

The minimum grant aid per individual project is €50,000, with a maximum potential grant of €500,000 applying. Match funding is not required. Projects to be funded will be capital in nature.

If the fund has not been fully allocated in the first round, it is expected that further rounds of applications will apply in July and December of 2024. This may be suitable for projects not yet ready for application by the first expression of interest deadline (May 2024).

The Community Recognition Fund will support groups, particularly in areas of: Comhairle Contae Loch

SlaNey ad Page 66 - 10th April 2024
Wexford Y35 WY93
053 919 6000 Carricklawn,

• Development or refurbishment of community or cultural facilities

• Local club and sports facilities; school/parish facilities

• The purchase of equipment for clubs, festivals, community events and organisations

• Transport infrastructure, such as community vehicles.

Online application forms and programme guidelines will be available at from Monday 15th April 2024 (fund opening date).

For queries, please call 053-919 6851 or email ref: CRF2024.

Closing date for receipt of completed applications is Wednesday 15th May 2024.

All projects must be fully delivered by end of 2026.

Information Sessions on Grants available for Vacant / Derelict Properties

Wexford County Council are holding a series of information sessions around County Wexford in April, at which staff from Wexford County Council will be in attendance to offer expert advice on the National grants and supports available to renovate vacant and derelict properties.

These information sessions will give people an opportunity to discuss options privately regarding the restoration of vacant and derelict properties. Supports available include the Croí Cónaithe Grant amongst other supports.

New Ross

This walk-in session requires no appointment. Further details of all vacant home grant schemes are available at

Call for Expressions of Interest for the Supply of Social Housing and Development Land

Wexford County Council has an ambitious 5 year capital programme under the Housing For All Action Plan. As part of a range of housing solutions, the housing authority is seeking expressions of interest from private developers, building contractors and landowners.

Wexford County Council is seeking expressions of interest from interested parties who are capable of delivering turnkey units within the County or the provision of development land.

Wexford County Council will consider land or units in areas which have an established need. An explanatory document will outline the areas of need across the County.

In particular, Wexford County Council is seeking: -

• Turnkey developments. Acquisitions are on a turnkey basis; potential payment is a fixed price lump sum, on completion of a development, within an agreed timeframe.

• Mixed development schemes where social residential components could be incorporated.

• Development land, varying from small sites (circa 4-6 units) in rural areas with modest demand to larger sites in urban areas (circa 50-70).

• Delivery of adapted dwellings to meet the requirements of those with specific needs.

All developments and associated works must be fully compliant with the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government guidelines and standards.

A preliminary proposal via the official application form will need to be submitted along with required documentation.

Application forms must be received by 5pm on Thursday 11th April 2024.

Application forms and accompanying explanatory documents should be requested by emailing or may be downloaded from

Wexford County Council is subject to the provisions of the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act 2014.

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Municipal District Date Venue
Monday 8th April, 2pm to 6pm The Tholsel, New Ross. Rosslare Tuesday 9th April, 2pm to 6pm Murrintown Community Centre. Wexford Wednesday 10th April, 2pm to 6pm Borough District Offices, The Bullring, Wexford. Gorey Thursday 11th April, 2pm to 6pm Civic Offices, Gorey.
Friday 12th April, 2pm to 6pm Municipal District Offices, The Market Square, Enniscorthy. Street Lights Broken? Report on Outside office hours call: 053 919 6000 Register on for free text and email alerts about service disruptions in your locality Planning app. lists available at

Enniscorthy Community College TY Variety Show

Riverside Park Hotel, 7th March, 2024

Thursday 7th March at the Riverside Park Hotel, families, students and locals gathered and were in for a real treat with this year's Transition Year Students from Enniscorthy Community College (Gairmcholáiste Inis Córthaidh) hosting their Variety Show. The venue was tightly packed, all ages sat together eagerly awaiting the show's start.

MC for the evening was the ever engaging Liam Sharkey delivering amusing quips, bringing a taste of theatrics through the mic with the audience and the show's acts – he also smoothly keeps the night's programme on track and moving along comfortably.

The students’ first offering was a stage rendition of ‘Grease Lightning’ from the classic theatre show and famous film Grease.

The boys with their slick, greased and quiffed hair, danced Travolta style, while a student played electric guitar on a plinth, the girls donning colourful swinging skirts reminiscent of the ’50s, bopped and jived at the front of the stage. This sets the mood for the entire show, as audience members are taken on a journey back in time, clapping along to the music as they watch their children, grandchildren, brothers, sisters, nieces and nephews showing likely a different side, with their performances.

We can already see how much hard work had gone into the preparations as we watched the teamwork of the TY students on and off stage, during and between acts.

Mr Maher, TY Coordinator, hops to the stage to say a few words about the behind-the-scenes and the school before we

are handed back to Liam, who lets the audience know about the evening's raffle with some rather substantial prizes donated by local vendors and businesses to which he names and gives thanks – €100 sponsored by ECC, “with one for every student in the school…Gee’s if you believe that you’ll believe anything!” he quipped.

A Meal for Two in the Riverside Park Hotel, €100 voucher for The Wildflower Cafe in Beechdale, a Coffee Cup + 10 Free Coffees from Creative Grounds, a Set of Headphones and a Voucher from Smythbyrne Solutions, and Galway Crystal from Somers Commercial.

The comedy sketch Phobias Workshop was up next, and it had the audience in stitches along with sore ears from the comedian's AAGH!! screeching multiple times! Perfectly timed execution, as in the words of renowned comedian Spike Mulligan,

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Left: Some of the student cast of ‘Grease’. Above: Enniscorthy Community College staff, Conor Dempsey, Alison Cooney, Aidan Browne.

“Comedy is the hardest script to write.” All-Stars GAA followed, a skit taking place inside a nursing home, filled with past GAA All-Stars, it also added hilarity, inducing laughter from the audience, with honking horns to accentuate the comedy and create an atmosphere. A lot more dialogue was written for this piece, and each player owned their character’s personality.

In between acts, Liam never fails to keep the room focused on the stage, with a strong mix of informative, comedic and interaction.

Emigration is the dramatic scene we witness next, depicting a piece of Irish history from a local and individual point of view, whereby the film Brooklyn portrayed it in full a decade ago.

We were blessed with the delightful voice of Katie Cloke, who performed her version of Hopelessly Devoted to You, in keeping with the night's overall theme, Grease.

The piece formed three acts, written and performed concisely, dramatically yet informative, delivering a narrative in a story fashion, that reflected the time when the need to leave home, country and loved ones was a necessity and the heartbreak that emigrating caused.

Throughout the night, Liam would mention and thank the staff for their hard

work in the classroom, and during the show’s preparational weeks.

First Dates, a short act before the intermission, was the cleverest act of all, it tells the story of a lad going to meet the parents of his girlfriend, seems bland enough, but it is all done with mime, utilising excerpts of songs/lyrics to guide the scene – it was unique in its offering, and the choice of song lyrics was impeccably done, it was of course not without its comedic element.

Under Construction Band comprising Jack Redmond, Andrew Kehoe and Ric Jones, came on stage to perform The Clash cover ‘Should I Stay or Should I Go’ a song recognised by all walks of life.

The Teacher's Lip Sync Battle brought the staff to the stage to perform in their own way (or in My Way for Ole Blue Eyes!)

The set was a copy of X-Factor with judges Simon Cowell and Louis Walsh. First up, we had the Barbies lip syncing to Barbie Girl, followed by S Club 7 who choreographed their bubbly song.

Sharkey’s Angels blended MC with 4 of the female staff members, a take on Charlie’s Angels, followed by The Boys with ‘The Boys Are Back In Town’, ending with Ole Blue Eyes performing Frank Sinatra’s NY New York.

You can guess who won, yes?

Frank of course!

Junk Kouture Fashion Show is a regular item on TY year nowadays, it aims at building teamwork, organisational skills, advocacy, crafting, recycling, and designing fashion pieces with a theme to be modelled on the catwalk.

These were abundant ideas that had been implemented through fashion design.

“She’s Kicking It” was designed by Sophie Gannon (Model), Amy Williams, Sarah Jane O’Toole and Holly Boland. Their chosen theme was ‘Women's Equality in Sport - Symbol of Empowerment’.

“De-Caffeinated” was designed by Aideen Mirka (Model), Keira Byrne and Abbie Dobbs. Their theme is ‘Highlighting the increasing dependency on caffeine in young people across the world’.

“Go With The Flow” was designed by Eva Luchian (Model), Lila Garcia, and Jules Araba. Their inspiration was ‘Ocean Pollution – how it affects our environment and the people around us.’ Plastic makes up 80% of marine pollution.

“Broken Hearts” is already a finalist in the National Junk Kouture competition, and is solely designed and modelled by Katie Cloke. The theme is highlighting ‘Heart Conditions are the Leading Cause of Death Globally’, Katie says, “As a person who has lost a close family member to a heart condition (SADS) I have been greatly inspired for this design”.

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Left: Some of the student cast of ‘Grease’. Above: Enniscorthy Community College Principal Dr Iain Wickham and Deputy Principal Tina Merriman.
overleaf ➤

“Hard Knock Life” designed by Keeley Tobin has a strong message as their theme is to highlight ‘The Positives and Negatives in the Foster Care System’.

“Roman Soldier” was designed by VJ Broader Brooks, Jamie Levingstone and Killian Duggan. The theme, as in the title, Roman Soldier, with the Spear having been the woodwork project of VJ.

“Juicy Couture” was designed by Jack Redmond (Model), Tommie Morrisey, Andrew Kehoe, and Ric Jones. Their inspiration was ‘Repurposed with Ingenuity’ as they witnessed days on end the waste of numerous juice cartons being abandoned, and even the pants of their suit were fashioned from old woven coal bags.

Last, but not least, “The Bear” was designed by Darragh Jordan, Abui Finn and Anna Byrne. The theme highlighted ‘Animal Cruelty’. Darragh (a Man Utd fan) gives a wondrous finale to the fashion show with his catwalk dance to The Smiths track ‘This Charming Man’.

The evening closes with more of the Grease theme, with a performance of the Hand Jive which had many members of the audience joining in from their chairs.

Well Done ECC TY – that was a fantastic show!

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‘Broken Hearts’, a finalist in the National Junk Kouture competition, designed by Katie Cloke and modelled by her at the Enniscorthy Community College TY Variety Show. Above left: Warren Wheelock and Aaron O’Neill. Above centre: Liam Sharkey and John Reilly keeping everyone entertained. Above right: Terri Foley and Kay O’Leary. Below left and right: Helping out at the show.

Mother’s Day break fast

Mother’s Day Breakfast in aid of Oulart Strictly Come Dancing and Oulart GAA in the Community Centre, 10th March 2024, organised by Peter Sutton and Seanon Crean.


Two of the dancers keeping their energy levels up at the breakfast morning,

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Michael and Marion Quigley. Seanon Crean, Fran Davis, Margaret Sutton, Mag Evans, Peter Sutton and Marie Redmond. Ellie, Ciaran and Tom Fenlon. Peg Nolan, Bernie Kehoe and Hugo Davitt. Bridget O’Toole and Anne Nolan. Jim, Tom Snr and Tom Dunne. Niamh, Anne and Ned Dunne. Jack and Kimmy Nolan. Kate Roche and Darryl Gray.

Film screening of ‘Shadow of Freedom 1 & 2’

niscorthy’s ancient past that remains today, were used to depict the scenes script to screen.

In her introduction, Maria walked us through the historical accuracy of the film, how the scenes were filmed at actual historical landmarks and places where the events depicted took place in this town so many moons ago.

The film is set in and makes references to the reality of both the Irish War of Independence and the Irish Civil War within our town, focusing on the McDonald family who are part of Enniscorthy’s ancestry.

Upon arrival, expecting the film soiree, we were surprisingly met by the tail end of the Annual Open Call Exhibition still in full swing, with Alec Michael Wilson and Vistafutur performing as Irate Yeats, electric guitars in hand and where else than atop the Presentation reception desk!

March 9th, The Presentation Arts Centre hosted the official film screening for The Shadow of Freedom 1 and The Shadow of Freedom 2 – A Country Divided. The films are adaptations of the novel of the same name by local author Maria Nolan.

As a book, The Shadow of Freedom is the sequel to The Shadow of the Hill, and as a film, it has been shot in two parts, under the direction of Dick Donaghue, who also wrote and adapted the screenplays.

Both films invite us into the world of Enniscorthy in 1922 and the homes of the McDonald family.

Producers Jer Ennis and Maria Nolan have taken their locality, and its history and utilised their skills to develop a landmark homage to the town’s ancestry with creative flair.

Local talents across the board, actors, writers, and filmmakers, all collaborating and working together.

One of the highlights of Enniscorthy itself is the widely diverse arts in the town, and how each branch works with the others to create this wonderfully maturing tree of artistic initiative in the town, as they all work together to bring the dreams of many to the fore, whilst showcasing the sheer abundance of the arts and talent in the town.

With the collaboration of Wexford Film Workshop, Enniscorthy Drama Group, and Enniscorthy Historical Reenactment Society, the film was in production, drawing on local actors, historians, proprietors, property/home-owners, Enniscorthy Castle, Ferns historic grounds, and many spots of En-

The foyer was a bustling hub of artistic clientele and film ticket gatherers, members of the cast and crew of The Shadow of Freedom mingled, and support was shown by many others in the industry attending, such as international award-winning cinematographer and documentarian Michael Benson.

It was a full house once the event got underway, upstairs and downstairs there was not a free seat, the screensaver on the projected screen was a promo still shot taken from the film’s second part, inlaid with the six official selections and film awards that Part 1 already has under its belt.

Best Director, and Best Short Film at European Arts Festival, Best Actress ‘Fiona McDermott’ at Best International Film Festival - Bucharest Romania, with Official Selections in Cork Film Week, Swedish International Film Festival, and Semi-Finalist at Benelux International Film Festival.

The first movie begins, and it takes us back, with the chosen locations still giving the authenticity of bygone days.

Shot rudimentarily, the story drove the film, with character introductions, historical references and neatly sewing together a narrative – what was prominent from the start was the closeknit connection to Enniscorthy and the descendants of those we see being depicted onscreen.

The grainy feel could have the ambition of delivering an old stock footage effect, however, the drama of the script itself is what brought it home.

The intermission gave Dick time to address the audience offering further anecdotes about the film's origin, stories and the effectiveness of the generosity of the town, without which the

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film could not have been made.

The Shadow of Freedom 1 & 2 were solely zero-budget productions he informs us, (and this is often how many local filmmakers get their movies made). He gives further thanks to the cast, crew and the helpful locals.

The proceeds from the event are going towards submitting the films to more film festivals in Europe and Internationally –we wish them much success.

The Shadow of Freedom Part 2 leapt in immediately, transporting us back into the past.

The characters now truly developed, the quality of the filming increased, and overall the technical production was crisp and clear whilst maintaining the historical envelopment and aesthetic.

The story weaved the narrative delivering an ancestral account of events. We are fully introduced to additional characters by actors Lorraine Fox and our local star Fintan Kelly, and both give fabulous performances. There’s always that one small character part that can impact the entire film, and that part was Peggy played by local thespian Madeline Breen, the execution was paramount and she delivered it perfectly, with Lorraine and EDG’s Karen Franklin to compliment the scene.

Another passing character that was of note, had minimal dialogue, yet the loitering and facial expressions said it all, played by Edel Kelly

All in all the drama exploded, quite literally, in The Shadow of Freedom Part 2

The two films could easily be used as a proof of concept to gain funding for a major production feature film, which like Brooklyn, would bring revenue to the region and highlight Enniscorthy on the global film map.

Full Cast:

Fiona McDermott, Marja van Kampen, Summer Venn Keane, Deirdre Mernagh, Jer Ennis, Ray Murphy, Maria Nolan, Jamie O’Rourke, Madeline Breen, Paul Redmond, Karen Franklin, Ian Kidd, Fintan Kelly, Billy Redmond, Edel Kelly, Sean Lacey, John Kirwan, Billy Heffernan, Lorraine Fox, Richard O’Sullivan, Billy Phayers, Paul Murphy, Joe Mernagh, Conor Kelly, Kate Breen, Donal Kelly, Fergal Kelly, Joan O’Rourke, Dave Parsons, Tim Connaughton, Brendan Robinson, Mary Kelly, Tom Boland, Pat Murphy, Jacqui Killeen, Tim Corrigan, Barry Lacey, Paul Stafford, Margaret O’Neill Wall, Billy Stafford, Graham Cadogan, Sharon Whelan, Bridget Murphy, Tommy Whelan, Antione Fischer, Jimmy Franklin. n

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Some awards won. Some of the cast and crew behind the hugely successful ‘The Shadow of Freedom’ parts 1 and 2.

A Fleadh fo

Fleadh Cheoil na hÉirea take centre s in Wexfor

Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann 2024, organised by Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann and hosted by the Wexford Fleadh Executive Committee, is expected to draw over half a million visitors to the Sunny Southeast. This year's theme, 'A Fleadh for All', reflects its inclusive nature, welcoming both seasoned attendees and first-time visitors. The festival will bring together 15,000 musicians, dancers, singers, and storytellers from diverse communities across Ireland, showcasing traditional Irish music, dance, and culture.

The countdown begins as the county gears up to welcome the world to Wexford Town.

On 30th March 2024 the Wexford Fleadh Executive Committee and Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann officially launched this year’s Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann. From 4th to 11th August 2024, Wexford Town will come alive with the world’s largest celebration of Irish traditional music and heritage. The event, organised by Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann and hosted by the local committee, is expected to draw over half a million visitors to the sunny southeast.

This year's theme, 'A Fleadh for All', truly embodies the festival's spirit of inclusivity and diversity. It's a celebration that warmly welcomes everyone, from seasoned attendees to first-time visitors. The

Fleadh will host a significant international audience and feature a diverse lineup of 15,000 musicians, dancers, singers and storytellers from various communities across Ireland, all brought together by their love of traditional Irish music, dance and culture. With an exciting and varied programme that caters to all tastes, there's something for everyone at Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann 2024. The recent launch offered just a taste of the thrilling cultural experiences in store for attendees this August.

Cathaoirleach of the Fleadh Executive Committee, Eddie Taaffe, said:

“We're honoured to have our beloved town play host to this year's Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann. This celebration is a tribute to the volunteers, businesses, musicians, Comhaltas branches, and the global community, all of whom will contribute to making this year's event

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r all!

ann 2024 set to stage rd

unforgettable. The Fleadh is a festival for everyone, inviting both those who have experienced a Fleadh before and those who have yet to discover its magic. We’ve been working towards this Fleadh for many years, and we can't wait to showcase the rich Wexford culture of music, song and dance with the world.“

Wexford Town, nestled in Ireland’s Ancient East, offers more than just a picturesque backdrop for the celebrations. Attendees are encouraged to explore the wider county, with its sprawling coastline, bustling towns, and rich history.

Fáilte Ireland Tourism Officer for Ireland’s Ancient East, Aileen Dowling, said:

“As proud event partners, Fáilte Ireland is thrilled to celebrate the Fleadh Cheoil 2024 in Wexford this August! Rolling out the red carpet for visitors from near and far, we’re looking forward to welcoming visitors to the Fleadh and sharing all the wonders of Ireland's Ancient East."

Speaking on the Fleadh’s arrival in Wexford, Director-General of Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann, Labhrás Ó Murchú, said:

“The 2024 Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann promises to be one the most spectacular Fleadhanna of all time. Against the backdrop of historic Wexford – famous in music, song and story – up to 600,000 Fleadh fans from all over the world will assemble for one of the greatest cultural festivals in the world. The economy will benefit by over €60,000,000, and Irish culture will be substantially enhanced.”

The Irish diaspora stretches to 80 million people worldwide. Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann, the largest event of its kind, serves as a melting pot of culture, of people coming together to celebrate traditional music and Irish heritage from across the world. For the Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann 2024, visitors can expect lively sessions in quiet pub corners, dancing, singing, and on-street performances, with céilí bands galore. This year is set to feature many highlights, with the eagerly anticipated traditional music and dance competitions serving as high points in the week.

Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann is kindly supported by Wexford County Council, Fáilte Ireland and Wexford Credit Union. RTÉ and TG4 will once again act as broadcast and live broadcasting partners respectively.

For more information and to stay updated on Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann 2024, visit n

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Oulart-The Ballagh’s Strictly Club Dancing

A massive crowd of 800 people filled Whites Hotel in Wexford town on Saturday 30th March for the final of the Oulart-The Ballagh GAA Strictly Club Dancing competition.

Right: Oulart-The Ballagh GAA Strictly Club Dancing winners Niall Nimmo and Eleanor Hammell.

Below: Competitors and comperes for the Oulart-The Ballagh GAA Strictly Club Dancing final in Whites Hotel, Wexford.

If you missed out on attending the night itself you can catch up on all the action on:

We will be carrying a full report and photos in our May online issue. n

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Co. Wexford’s festivals to receive financial support


Small Arts Festival & Fáilte Ireland Festival Grant Scheme 2024:

Wexford County Council is pleased to announce that 20 festivals throughout the county have been awarded funding in 2024 through the Arts Office Small Arts Festival Fund and Fáilte Ireland Festival Scheme. This amounts to a total investment of €50,000 in local communities. This year the Grant Scheme was broken into 2 strands:

Strand 1 – Small Arts Festival Grant Total Fund €25,000:

This grant supports a diverse range of small arts festivals or experimental artistic events throughout Wexford County. The focus is on festivals of artistic quality that have a strong emphasis on public engagement and promote cross disciplinary artistic collaborations and experimentation.

Strand 2 – Fáilte Ireland Festival Grant Total Fund €25,000:

This strand, supported by Fáilte Ireland, aims to support festivals that drive domestic tourism, help to improve the visitor experience in County Wexford, focusing on historic festivals, traditional culture festivals, and festivals promoting food culture.

A total of 20 festivals were awarded funding of between €1,000 - €3,000 each, out of a total of 37 applications.


The Gap Arts Festival 2024 – A full weekend to celebrate, enjoy, and discover new perspectives, offering engagements with art/artists, innovative performances and participative workshops, GAF has developed collaborations between artists and community telling our own stories in this landscape.

The Gorey May Bush Féile 2024 – A programme of community engagement events starting in April 2024 and culminating in the annual and final community performance/participatory event on May Eve 2024 in Gorey District. Flow Youth Dance Festival – a two-day

festival of dance workshops and a live dance performance in New Ross aimed at young people.

New Ross Guitar Festival – a festival showcasing the best of local, national and international guitarists, includes concerts, workshops and various busking events in various locations in New Ross.

FuddleFest – presents a multi-genre music festival with an emphasis on high quality contemporary music performances over 2 days indoors and outdoors in the rural environment of Fuddletown Farm, Killinick.

Jazz at Johnstown – Offering three days of jazz music playing across multiple stages in addition to indoor evening concerts at Johnstown Castle.

‘Write By The Sea’ Literary Festival – is an annual literature festival that brings a hive of literary activity into Kilmore Quay, by presenting readings, interviews, discussions, storytelling and workshops with international, national and local writers.

‘SpringMoves’ Dance Festival – In partnership with the National Opera House. A two-day festival celebrating dance for children and adults alike with invited local, national and international dancers. Includes workshops, street dance performances and talks.

One Voice Festival – Wexford Reflections 1974-2024 – A festival celebrating new playwrighting voices in Wexford, culminating in 8 short monologue plays, performed over a series of evenings in Wexford Arts Centre.

The Wexford May Bush Festival 2024 –online and in person arts festival celebrating the May Bush with events from midApril to mid-May.

Coolcotts Halloween Fest 2024 – A festival of music, magic, opera and extreme rhythm for young people in Wexford town.


Enniscorthy Rockin' Food & Fruit Festival – a fun filled weekend for families, rock ‘n’ roll enthusiasts, foodies and lovers of Irish craft in Enniscorthy.

Leo Carthy Weekend – this two-day festival incorporates a wide range of enter-

tainment that caters for all age groups with live music across many musical genres, plays, story-telling and art workshops.

Rosslare Harbour Festival 2024 – a festival that is a series of community lead events that explores the rich heritage of the village, port, surrounding areas and the relationship with the wider world.

North Wexford Traditional Singing Féile – a weekend of traditional song workshops, singing events, and singing & historical walking tours.

The Eugene O’Neill International Festival of Theatre – a festival celebrating the unique historic legacies of actor James O’Neill and his son, the celebrated playwright Eugene O’Neill, in their ancestral home area of New Ross, Co Wexford.

Blackstairs Blues Festival 24 – a threeday festival of Blues events, workshops and live performances in Enniscorthy. Festival of Ferns – a two-day annual festival celebrating Ferns heritage and culture. There will be a colourful carnival type parade and celebratory re-enactment when a new King of Leinster (previously ruled from Ferns) will be crowned – alongside a variety of fringe events.

Kilanerin Food & Heritage Festival – a festival including an artisan food market, exhibiting locally produced food, alongside two days of food demonstrations from local chefs, food experts and producers in north Wexford.

Rebellion Day & 1798 Summer School – A municipal commemoration to recognise the anniversary of the Longest Day in 1798 and Summer School with a programme of special guest lectures and guided tours at the The National 1798 Rebellion Centre, Enniscorthy Castle and Vinegar Hill focused on the events of 1798.

Liz Burns, County Arts Officer, Arts Department, said, ‘Wexford County Council is delighted to support twenty unique festivals in 2024, that each celebrate Wexford’s vibrant arts and cultural heritage for locals and visitors to enjoy. I wish all the festivals every success in 2024 and look forward to attending them.” n

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Elena’s Nail Bar

On 11th March 2024 the offical opening of Elena’s Nail Bar and Beauty salon took place at 21 Trinity Street, Wexford town.


To contact Elena’s Nail Bar and Beauty tel: 083 1464739 or check out facebook: n

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SUPPORT YOUR LOCAL ARTS CENTRES Wexford Arts Centre: 053-9123764. The Presentation Arts Centre, Enniscorthy: 053-9233000 The Courthouse Arts Centre, Tinahely: 0402-38529 ENNISCORTHY LIBRARY Lymington Road - Enniscorthy Phone: 053 9236055
Right: Proprietor Elena Ripko and assistant Marta Sowanges at the official opening of the premises. right: Carol Jackson wishing Elena Ripko the very best at the official opening in Wexford.

Enniscorthy choirs open to new members

In Enniscorthy, there are at least three choirs open for new members: Enniscorthy Gospel Choir, the Silvertones and the new singing group called The Templars based at Templeshannon Community Centre.


Enniscorthy Gospel Choir: Tel: 087 652 2198. Facebook: ‘Enniscorthy Gospel Choir’. Silvertones: Danny 087 2465250 or Mary: 089 414 2626.

The Templars: Tel: 053 9237511. Meet every Thursday morning at 11am in Templeshannon Community Centre. n


Email: Phone: 053 9236055


Monday 10.30am - 5.30pm (closed 1pm to 2pm). Tuesday 10.30am - 5.30pm.

Wednesday 10.30am - 5.30pm. Thursday 10.30am - 8.30pm.

Friday 10.30am - 5.30pm. Saturday 10.30am - 5.30pm (closed 1pm to 2pm).

Closed Saturday & Mondays of bank holiday weekends. n

Over €9,000 raised for charity


Enniscorthy Gospel Choir were delighted to recently present a cheque for €9,281 to Parkinson’s Association of Ireland, Wexford Branch, after a very successful fundraising concert in the Riverside Park Hotel on the 25th February.

Enniscorthy Gospel Choir would like to thank everyone for their support: Their amazing musical director – Anita Mahon, soloist – Emily Furlong, Music Generation Wexford’s Yellow Bellows, and Singing for Health Parkinson’s. Also, the wonderful musicians who accompanied

all the choirs – Greg Semla with Rory Cooper and Eddie Blake; Liam Sharkey who presented the show and entertained the audience, all the very generous sponsors and, of course, the huge audience who helped make the night such a success. n

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St. Patrick’s Day Parade hits all the right notes

The 2024 St. Patricks Day Parade hit all the right notes with locals and new arrivals to the town despite the fact that there wasn’t a marching band in sight!

Coming together at short notice, the Parade Committee under the direction of Event Manager Martin Murphy and Town Manager Claire Lawless, Sarah Kelly, Mary Murphy, Tom Boland, Alfie O`Sullivan and Maria Nolan, pulled together a parade that the town could be proud of.

Following in the footsteps of people like the great Sean Doyle and his dedicated committees who kept the parade going strong down through all the years, the 2024 Committee vowed to make this year’s parade a display for all to enjoy. Putting out a call not just to groups, clubs, and organisations who have been welcome and regular participants in the parade, the Committee adopted the title and theme Mardi Fleadh with a nod to creativity, music, diversity and fun, and to the 2024 Fleadh which will be hosted in Wexford town in August and to the Mardi Gras ethos of colour, movement and dance, and invited all the nationalities who now call Enniscorthy home to come and join in the fun and the craic on St. Patrick’s Day.

To the Committee’s delight, Enniscorthy’s Indian, Brazilian, and Ukrainian


communities entered groups certainly adding to the spectacle of the occasion.

A call was also made to the people of Enniscorthy to turn out in support of their national Feast Day wearing the green, and they certainly answered the call showing up in huge numbers to view the parade.

With approximately 30 groups and 700 people taking part along with the many moving vehicles and floats, this year’s parade will go down as one of the most successful in many years.

The parade was led by Marshals, St. Patrick and St. Bridget.

In light of the fact that nothing had been done in the town to celebrate St. Bridget’s first ever national Feast Day this year, the Committee thought it only right and proper that there should be a nod to Bridget in the parade and besides St. Patrick being a gentleman didn’t mind sharing the occasion with his female counterpart.

Enniscorthy Municipal District, Wexford County Council and Enniscorthy Creative Places kindly sponsored prizes as follows: €500 went to Martina Leacy Dance Academy for Best Turned Out Group.

€500 to the Brazilian Community – for Best Community group.

€500 to Smyth’s Homevalue for Best

Business Window Display.

Philomena Murphy won a €100 Hamper kindly sponsored by Pettitt’s SuperValu for the Best Dressed Individual.

The Cathaoirleach of Enniscorthy Municipal District Cllr John O`Rourke presented the winners with their prizes saying , ‘Enniscorthy Municipal District are delighted to sponsor the prizes for this year’s event. On behalf of the Elected Members, I would like to thank all the participants in the parade and the business owners who entered the Best Business Window Display competition for their creativity and the great effort they put into this year’s St. Patrick’s Day.’ Deryn O`Callaghan, Creative Places Enniscorthy, who also sponsored the prizes, congratulated all the team, new and old, and said that the parade was a great success.

Thank you to all who took part in the event, thank you to the Council staff for all their help, and thank you to the people of Enniscorthy for turning out and wearing the green with pride on St. Patrick’s Day.

New members are welcome on the committee. If you are interested in joining please email or call 053 9196830.

Lets make 2025 even better! n

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Slaney ad Slaney leiSure & lifeStyle Page 82 - 10th April 2024 St Patrick’s Parade in Enniscorthy PAT’S PICTURE PARADE OUT AND ABOUT WITH PHOTOGRAPHER PAT O’CONNOR 087-2870006
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Parade in
17th March 2024
Slaney leiSure & lifeStyle 10th April 2024 - Page 85 Left PAT’S PICTURE PARADE OUT AND ABOUT WITH PHOTOGRAPHER PAT O’CONNOR 087-2870006
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The Phantom is about to

is thrilled to have secured the rights to stage the wonderful hit musical The Phantom of the Opera by composer Andrew Lloyd Webber with lyrics by Charles Hart and additional lyrics by Richard Stilgoe. This stunning show will run at the National Opera House, Wexford, from Monday 24th April to Saturday 4th May nightly at 8pm with a matinee performance on Saturday 4th May at 2pm.

Such has been the enthusiasm to see this amazing show that tickets are completely sold out for all performances, and with the restricted release by the rightsholders it’s not possible for WLOS to extend the run.

The production is packed with musical favourites such as: The Phantom of the Opera, The Music of the Night and All I Ask of You.

The superb cast for the upcoming production is as follows:

Christine Daaé - KARLA TRACEY

The Phantom - TONY CARTY


Gilles André - PAT LAWLOR

Carlotta Giudicelli - AMI STAHLUT

Madame Giry - NICOLA ROCHE

Ubaldo Piangi – GEORGE LAWLOR

Monsieur Reyer - DYLAN WALSH


Joseph Buquet - ERIC HAYES

Confidante (in Il Muto) - CATHERINE WALSH

Monsieur Lefèvre- JAMES McDERMOTT


Auctioneer - STEPHEN BYRNE.

The production team for The Phantom of the Opera is:

Director - Christine Scarry

Musical Director - David Hayes

Chorus Mistress - Eithne Corrigan Choreographer - Thérése O’Sullivan.

Rehearsals are well under way for what promises to be an award-winning production.

The Phantom of the Opera was officially launched on Saturday 6th April 2024 at La Vista Café & Restaurant located on the third floor of the National Opera House. The launch was performed by Wexford’s Aileen Donohoe who has appeared with WLOS on numerous occasions. Aileen was part of the ensemble for two years in the West End production of The Phantom of the Opera some time ago.

Chairperson Colin Murphy welcomed everyone and thanked the various people without whom it would not be possible to stage this ambitious show. Then Director Christine Scarry introduced the talented cast of The Phantom of the Opera. n

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Some of the talented ladies in the cast. Some of the main cast members and director with Aileen Donohoe (centre) who officially launched the production.
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Cllr George Laewlor, who plays the role of Ubaldo Piangi, with two of the younger cast members. Colin Murphy, Chairperson of Wexford Light Opera Society, speaking at the launch. Director Christine Scarry introduced the cast of The Phantom of the Opera. Aileen Donohoe who officially launched the production of The Phantom of the Opera. Above: Four of the stars of the show: Niamh Cullen, Nicola Roche, Karla Tracey, Ami Stahlut. Below left: The Phantom, Tony Carty, with fellow cast member Daniel Furlong. Below right: Catherine (Biddy) Walsh (second from left), a stalwart of WLOS, with fellow cast members.

At the Riverside Park Hotel Enniscorthy

Stay in touch

Wexford Public Libraries Social Media: Wexford Public Libraries on Facebook. Wexford Public Libraries on Instagram @wexfordlibraries

Wexford Public Libraries on Twitter @wexlibraries

YouTube: "Wexford Public Libraries" n

The Riverside Park Hotel, Enniscorthy, upcoming event: 11th May 2024 – Pat & Faye Shortt. Tickets from hotel reception or online at Overnight packages also available including tickets and accommodation. n


Wexford Arts Centre: 053-9123764.

The Presentation Arts Centre, Enniscorthy: 053-9233000

The Courthouse Arts Centre, Tinahely: (0402) 38529

Enniscorthy Retirement Association

The Enniscorthy Retirement Association holds monthly meeting on the first Tuesday of every month at 2.30pm in the Riverside Park Hotel, The Promenade, Enniscorthy.

The April guest speaker was Minister James Browne TD who, following his talk, answered a variety of questions from members of the Association.

For further details about Enniscorthy Retirement Association go along to any monthly meeting or see ‘Enniscorthy Retirement Association’ on Facebook or email:

Check out the new website which is now live at n

Dancing with Declan

Keep up to date with the local dancing scene on: n

What’s On Wexford

Check out for the best listing of what’s happening all over Co. Wexford. n

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Minister James Browne TD with Valerie Morris of the Enniscorthy Retirement Association.

Ladies Night at Coast Hotel, Rosslare, in aid of St Mary’s Day Centre, Tagoat

22nd March 2024.

Above left: Beauty Cot beautician Siobhan Burke puts the finishing touches to the nails of Noreen Walsh who looks well pleased.

Above right: Filling the bags with loads of goodies for the attendees were Aoibhe Kehoe, Siobhan Murphy (Manager St Mary’s Day Care) and Kristina Platkeviciene.

Left: Relaxing treatment being given by Maria Butler of Soul To Sole, Rosslare Harbour.

Right: Caron Concar shows off her handmade cupcakes.

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Above left: Bridie Scannell and Katherine Thompson with their selection of jams, tarts, and homemade cakes. Above right: The roving reporter, book editor and Three Sisters Press publisher asks two ladies what they thought of the Ladies Night and according to Daphne Kelly and Imelda Kehoe-Kelly it was a great success! Left: Liz Power, Tagoat Knitwear, shows her selection of knitwear to Brenda O’Connor. Above: Elena Ripko gives a treatment.
Right: Kata C Rigo of Mavis Nest shows her products to customer Tanday Power.


An International Women's Day event was held on 8th March in the Presentation Arts Centre, Enniscorthy, hosted by the Delightful Dollies and Wexford Local Development, with a purple theme. Inspirational awards were given to various women to recognise all the work they do in the community. The event included music, dancing, and lots of food and fun, with other community groups and individ-

joining in including Ukrainian and Brazilian women.

Below centre: Liz O’Brien and Mary Sinnott.

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Above left: Catherine Cahill, Liz O’Brien, Patricia Wheeler and Bridget Major. Above centre: Julia Syrotenko (WLD), Sarah Bolger (WLD), Liz O uals Left: Winnie Connolly, Marion Morrissey, Winnie O’Connor, Theresa O’Connor, Julie Grant (WLD) and Edel Kenny. Below left: Eileen Coady, Gertie Bolger and Kit Kenny.
Below right: Marion Morrissey and Catherine Rossiter.
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O’Brien. Above right: Tetiana Kozyrski, Alina Svystun, Kate Riabko, Tetiana Dobel, Olena Tymoshenko, Olena Demenkova and Oksana Heste. Above left: Catherine Quigley, Helen Wildes, Eliz Brinton and Annette Davis. Above right: Margaret Brady, Evelyn Davitt and Josephine Rowson. Left: Sarah and Cora Kelly. Right: Sing-along with Ann Dunne, Philomena Murphy and Ita Kinnard. Below: Lisa Byrne (The Presentation Centre), Cllr John O’Rourke (Chairman Enniscorthy Municipal District) and Larry Dunne (The Presentation Centre). Below right: Mary Manning and Mary Joel alongside Mary Joel’s ‘Bird Box’.
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Above L-R: 1. Leighna and Marion Ryan. 2. Willow-Rose Dunne. 3. Myles and Olivia Ryan. 4. Joan
PAT O’CONNOR 087-2870006
Above L-R: 1. We were told that little Ava Rice doe
Above L-R: 1. Aaron Rice, Robin and Sam Quirke. 2. Marie O’Neill, Mellissa Dickson and Michelle Codd. 3. Ra
Slaney leiSure & lifeStyle 10th April 2024 - Page 95
and Gavin Carroll. esn’t smile and no matter how much we tried we couldn’t succeed! 2. Mia and Sarah Egan. 3. Keeping an eye on baby Soaibhe Hyland were Sam Burke and Aaron Rice. achel and Alice Cogley.

South East Techological University students have worked with children from St Patrick’s School, Enniscorthy, and Martina Leacy Dance School on this amazing project...

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Amigos take to the stage

A new theatre company, Amigo Productions, was founded by Mayo man, Paul Hughes, and has now established strong Enniscorthy and Co. Wexford roots.

The company decided to put out a call for new writing before Christmas and the response was phenomenal. Receiving well over 50 one-act plays from not only all over Ireland but from as far as Canada and Germany as well!

After much deliberation, five were picked as standouts. And they were announced on the 12th of January in Red Books, Wexford.

The plays selected were:

Borussia Mönchengladbach by Thomas Byrne, directed by Carol Long.

Went A Furze Smashing by Diarmuid McGuinness, directed by Julie Fox and Pat Murphy.

Merry Go Round by Joe Bergin, directed by Paul Hughes.

The Narrow Bench by James Sweetman, directed by Jamie T Murphy.

Burning Bridges by Eamonn Dolan, directed by Joan O Ruairc and Paul O’Reilly.

The shows will be staged on the 13th and 14th of April in the Arts Centre, Wexford. See details in accompanying poster.

Check out: m/amigotheatre n

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Movie Review with Kyle Walsh 

I was fortunate enough to grow up and be influenced by a great era of film. Films that really made your imagination run wild. I would daydream of great adventures with my friends. The 80s had some wonderful films that took me away from the reality of life. Films such as The Goonies, Gremlins, Superman, Stand by Me, Indiana Jones and many more. Even the likes of The Poltergeist.

I remember seeing a TV trailer for the original Ghostbusters movie back in the mid 80s and I couldn’t wait to see it. So when I eventually got it on VHS I absolutely loved every second of it and repeatedly watched it over and over again. It still remains one of those classic films that left an influence on me and to this day I still love it.

Like every other successful film, the studio smells the cash flow and always gives the green light to make a sequel or prequel depending on what IP you’re talking about. When they gave the greenlight for a sequel it subsequently failed to live up to its predecessor. For those of you who are like me and old enough to remember, the 90s Ghostbusters cartoon was far more superior to the film sequel. It was a great cartoon. So they waited to 2016 when they released another Ghostbusters movie which was just

desperate. One of the worst movies of that year. Then in 2021 they released Ghostbusters Afterlife which for a moment brought some life back to the world of Ghostbusters. But for all the plaudits it received, in my opinion it was only ok. So when I thought that was the end of Ghost Busting, what do they do, they drag me back to Wexford Omniplex Cinema to watch its new entry, this time it’s called Ghostbusters Frozen Empire. So, I hear you ask, what did I think of it? Where do I start!!!

For me, this was a really poor film and one I’d like to forget and definitely one I will never revisit. It lacked humour which the original one had plenty of. I didn’t find it amusing at any time, I did not smile to myself or laugh out loud. It lacked a lot of personality. The whole film was so bland and it had no identity, it didn’t know what it wanted to be, and lost itself in the confusion of the story and all the past characters, the newish characters and the new characters. Maybe that’s what is wrong with this movie, it just had way too many characters in it. They were trying to do 100 things throughout the film instead of concentrating on one or two things. It was just so boring.

The perfect example without spoiling it for you, would be the actor Fin Wolfhard who was in Afterlife, he’s in this too but my question is why is he in this because he literally gets nothing to do in it. It’s just a complete mess of a movie. An absolute snorefest waiting for something to happen and when it does it’s just underwhelming. Guys, the storyline is just so bad and even after all the mess they couldn’t even get the bad ghost right. This film makes no sense at all and is a complete disaster. The young girl of the family wants to be a ghostbuster but the town representative says she’s too young to be a Ghostbuster. She’s trying to get used to her mam’s new relationship. She plays chess on her own, then a young girl ghost appears to her and before you can say Ghostbusters, the two of them start to fall in love, with the young Ghostbuster now wanting to turn into a spirit to be with her ghost girlfriend. I ask you, are you confused because I am. Then there’s something about the world being frozen and some fella is a fire bender, all of a sudden, and without any training or anything like that he is able to defeat the evil.

All the old characters are back basically for pay cheques and why not if you can, I would and I guess ye would too. The most exciting part for me was seeing a bit of slimmer, imagine!

This film is utter garbage. When are these studios going to start making original films. We are bamboozed with so many sequels and prequels of original IP. I for one am getting seriously tired of it. It’s like a roundabout and there’s no sign of getting off it. Please folks, if you’re in the mood for some Ghost Busting stick to the original or the 90s cartoon version.

Stay well away from this lame excuse Ghostbusters... it gets a 2/10 from me. n

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Full report on Enniscorthy Musical Society’s very successful run of ‘Happy Days - A New Musical’ in next month’s issue

Vintage news...

The Over the Water Vintage Club will hold their first ‘Martin Kearon Memorial Tractor Run’ on Sunday 14th April 2024 starting from Screen village Registration at 11am Take off at 1pm

It is in aid of the Hope Cancer Support Centre at Wafer Street, Enniscorthy – a very worthy cause indeed

Your help and support on the day would be most welcome n

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Exciting news!

Join the launch night in The Presentation Centre, Enniscorthy, for the town’s newest comedy extravaganza – "The Laughing At The Crossroads Comedy Festival"!

Get ready for a night filled with laughter, entertainment, and good vibes.

Some incredible big-name acts are lined up for the festival, promising unforgettable performances! And as a a special treat, enjoy a performance by the hilarious Father Ted and Naked Camera comedian, Pat McDonnell! Plus, brace yourself for fantastic local acts who will add their own flair to the evening.

So save the date – 18th of April, and don't miss out on this spectacular night of comedy and camaraderie!

It’s a FREE event, so no tickets needed, but will be first come, first served on the evening.

Stay tuned to: for more updates and surprises as the organisers gear up for an unforgettable festival experience in Enniscorthy. n

Scorthy Smiles Comedy Association

Introducing Scorthy Smiles Comedy Association – a group founded by local comedians Galina Orlova, Blayne Hosey, Brendan Robinson, Natasha Brooks and Leona Eustace Breen.

With a focus on comedy and mental health well being, the group is so excited to introduce this group and cannot wait to share all the plans that it has in the pipeline.

Like and follow its Facebook page for updates:

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Scorthy Smiles at Creative Grounds

The amazingly talented local comedy group Scorthy Smiles Comedy Association took to the Creative Sounds stage, Irish Street, Enniscorthy, on April 7th, in what is likely to be the first of many shows there. And the performers were certainly up to the challenge.

Check out the Scorthy Smiles Facebook page for updates:



Drop in to Irish Street, Enniscorthy, Y21P8K6. Tel: 087 090 8783.


Facebook: ‘Creative Grounds Enniscorthy’ n

Join Enniscorthy’s new Social Singing Group

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Old Fogertys charity fundraiser

The legendary Old Fogertys, consisting of Eddie Crean, Richard King, Pat Murphy and Brendan Carthy, held their annual fundraising gig in Holohan’s Pub, Enniscorthy, on 15th March 2024, this year’s theme being the 1970s, and raised an incredible €2,380 for the Hope Cancer Support Centre, Enniscorthy.

The quartet would like to thank all those who performed on the night, the hugely supportive audience, Niall Holohan and staff for their support and sponsorship, Therese for rattling the bucket, Martin Crimmins for the fab poster design and, of course, all of you who donated. n

All pics courtesy of Maria Nolan

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Acko to release new single ‘Born on Earth’

Enniscorthy-based musician Acko returns on the 26th of April with the new single Born on Earth – his first release since his 2022 debut solo album St. Dominic’s Disappearance.

Acko is the former frontman with Dublin band Grasshopper and co-writer and producer of two critically acclaimed albums by The Revelator Orchestra.

Born on Earth serves as a ‘soft reunion’ for Grasshopper as it features his former Grasshopper bandmates Brian K. Adams on guitar, Dan Straight on bass and Peter Murphy (AKA Cursed Murphy) on spoken word duties.

"It's the closet we're ever going to get to a full-on reunion," says Acko, "I think it combines the best parts of Grasshopper and The Revelator Orchestra."

Recorded and mixed by Acko in his home studio, Born on Earth is a BIG loud beast built around a twochord riff. The song was inspired by a George Carlin quote, "When you are born in this world, you are given a ticket to the freak show."

The single also includes a live version of Traditional Song and the Digital Lice remix of Born on Earth.

Acko will release his second solo album Easy Journeys to Other Planets in the summer.

Born On Earth is available from Bandcamp and all the usual streaming platforms. n

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Prolific Wexford writer Luke O’Connell has just published his latest book – Reggie Rex and the Lost Egg and Luke says it’s the ‘proudest I have been with a book yet... thank you to everyone who helped make it happen!’

Check out Luke’s Facebook page oconnell.102 for more information or to order a copy. n Luke’s new book is his best yet!

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Luke O’Connell

The 8th Annual Open Call Exhibition at The Presentation Arts Centre, Enniscorthy –Celebrating Creativity! March 9th 2023 – May 4th 2023.

After a hugely successful 7th Annual Open Call Exhibition where 140 artists from all over Ireland shone brilliantly on the gallery walls, the 8th Annual Open Call Exhibition is back for 2024 in Enniscorthy’s primary gallery space. In what has been described as a staple of the arts and culture calendar in the south east of Ireland, this exhibition showcases all types of artists – professional or beginner, using any technique.

Saturday March 9th, 6pm - 8pm: Official Opening & Awards Ceremony. May 8th to May 11th, 10am - 10pm: Artwork Collection Days. n

The Slaney Writers group meets in Enniscorthy Library on the second Thursday of every month at 6.30pm. New members are always welcome. If you are interested please contact Enniscorthy Library on 053 9236055.

Enniscorthy Library Adult Book Club meets on the third Thursday of the month at 7pm and is free to join. Book clubs are a great way to meet others and discuss books. If you would like more information or to join, contact Enniscorthy library on 053 9236055. All are welcome. n

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Funding boost for local artists

ArtLinks is a partnership of the four Local Authority Arts Offices in Wexford, Carlow, Kilkenny and Waterford, supported by the Arts Council/An Chomhairle Ealaíon. The bursaries for emerging and professional artists provide professional development opportunities and supports for artists who are resident in the four counties.

The recipients of the €30,000 bursaries from the Arts Office, Wexford County Council are:

Bernadette Doolin - Visual Art;

Josephine Whitmore - Visual Art/Textile;

Mayumi Nakabayashi - Visual Art;

Cillian Byrne – Music;

Caroline Busher – Literature;

Ciana Fitzgerald - Visual Arts;

Vivian Brody Hayes – Dance;

Aileen Lambert - Traditional Arts;

Brendan Fahy - Circus;

Deborah Reidy - Visual Arts; Alec Moore - Visual Arts;

Keli-Ann Masterson – Opera; Mirona Mara - Visual Arts;

Serena Caulfield - Visual Arts.

In thanking all the ArtLinks members who submitted applications, Liz Burns, Arts Officer, Wexford County Council, said: ‘I am pleased that the Local Authority could support so many artists in the development of their arts practices and careers. The competition in Wexford was very high in 2024 with 46 applicants in total. Out of an increased fund of €30,000 the assessment panel awarded 14 Bursaries in total to Wexford based artists across art forms of Visual arts, Literature, Music, Drama, Film and Street Arts.’

For all ArtLinks enquiries please contact

Follow on Facebook and Instagram for more information and updates. n

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Artlinks 2024 Recipient, Deborah Reidy. ArtLinks 2024 Bursary Awards Announced Artlinks 2024 Recipient, Basciville.

A public reading

Words and pics by Maria Nolan

The Polished Trunk, a beautifully written and moving piece of drama by Reenagh McCall, had its first public reading at the Wexford Arts Centre recently and it blew me away.

Set in Wexford, the Polished Trunk tells the story of John who answered the call of MP John Redmond in 1914 to take up arms for the cause of little Belgium conquered and occupied by the ever-advancing Germans.

John believes that he is doing the correct thing going to fight for the rights of a small nation in the hope that after the war Britain will grand Home Rule to Ireland in recognition of the 200,000 Irishmen who enlisted in the British army.

John leaves Ireland a hero, amid flag waving and cheers he sets off to fight in a foreign war like many an Irishman before him.

Surviving Suvla Bay and the Dardanelles, John returns in 1918 to a very different Ireland than the one he left.

While he has been away fighting for the British Empire his family and friends at home in Ireland were fighting against it.

In Easter Week 1916 a terrible beauty is born changing the course of Irish history forever and John has been caught like many others who returned on the wrong side of it.

While returning soldiers were being revered and celebrated all over the world, John and those who left Ireland with him returned not as heroes but as villains who had sided with the

enemy and instead of being revered were reviled.

While their Allied counterparts were being decorated they had to close their mouths and hide their medals as they were stripped of all dignity and pride and very quickly became isolated and forgotten.

John’s story told from the perspective of his granddaughter unearthing the secrets of his polished trunk after his death portrays the terrible division in Ireland during the period and the playwright Reenagh McCall strikes a wonderful balance in this exquisite piece of writing that had me in tears at times for the lad who went to fight on foreign shores and at others for the lads who walked out on Easter morn feeling betrayed by those who left – all believing that they were doing what was right.

Spellbinding in the extreme, brilliantly directed by Katie McCann, with no set, no costumes, no props, no interval, and hardly any movement on stage, it is a testament to the writing, the direction and the superb performances that the Arts Centre audience were captivated from beginning to end.

Lovely to see the father and son combination of Michael and Naoise Dunbar, each as good as the other, among the wonderful cast that included Enniscorthy’s Fintan Kelly.

The Polished Trunk is a compelling and memorable piece and so worth seeing, supported by Wexford County Council under the Decade of Commemorations Programme. n

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The cast of ‘The Polished Trunk’ reading pictured with author, Reenagh McCall (fifth from left) and Arts Centre Director, Elizabeth Whyte.

Enniscorthy students competing in Texaco Art Competition

Young artists who submitted entries to this year’s Texaco Children’s Art Competition are currently having their works evaluated as the judging process gets underway.

Pictured is adjudicator Dr Denise Ferran admiring one of the entries received from Enniscorthy this year – a work entitled ‘The far away castle’ by a pupil from St. Aidan's Primary School.

Winners in the seven age categories, including one exclusively for artworks by young artists with special needs, will be announced in mid-April. Now celebrating its 70th year, the Texaco Children’s Art Competition is the longest-running art sponsorship in Ireland. First held in 1955, it is hosted by Valero Energy (Ireland) Limited – the company that markets fuel in Ireland under the Texaco brand. n

Calling All Artists

Slaney artS 10th April 2024 - Page 109 Deryn O’Callaghan is the Project Co-ordinator. For any queries, suggestions or ideas, tel: 087 9578984. Email: n
Creative Places Enniscorthy is holding a network session for ALL artists as detailed below. This is an opportunity to connect and chat with peers. There will also be information about funding streams and an opportunity to ask questions.

Tried-Tested-Tasted by Caitriona

Caitriona Barron from Drinagh, Wexford, grew up on her dad’s farm with plentiful homegrown veg and their own meat so “we really knew the value of good food. My mother started a seafood business after meeting my stepfather fisherman, my brother now runs the seafood business so I’m well used to fresh food.”

“I worked with the family business before leaving to be a stay-at-home mother but soon got bored (lol!) and started taking pics of my food, sharing my recipes on social media. When people started showing interest, I realised this could be a job so I bought myself a camera and threw myself in the deep of it. I love it and I get to work with amazing companies. Seeing my pictures in magazines, in shops, and occasionally on TV is pretty amazing. “I’m a mother of two boys and, yes, juggling it all can be very tough. But I keep it going as it’s my passion now and it’s very rewarding.” and Caitriona_barron on insta


Lemon Sugar:

¼ cup white sugar

1½ tsp lemon zest


Blueberries and 1 jar of lemon curd

Dutch Baby Pancake Batter:

2 tbsp butter, melted and slightly cooled 4 large eggs

¾ cup milk

¾ cup all-purpose flour

1 tbsp sugar

1 tsp vanilla

1/8 tsp fine salt

2 tbsp melted butter, for pan

Icing/confectioner's sugar, for garnish


Place a 12-cup or two 6-cup muffin tins in oven and preheat oven to 220c (with muffin tins in oven). Mix up the lemon sugar by stirring together the white sugar and lemon zest in a small bowl. Set aside. Make the Dutch baby batter by combining all the pancake ingredients in a blender and mixing well, until frothy. Leave in blender.

When oven is preheated, melt additional 2 tbsp butter. Remove hot muffin tins from oven and quickly brush bottoms and sides of pan with melted butter. Turn blender on for a few seconds to re-mix batter, then quickly pour in to hot muffin cups, dividing equally between 12 cups, filling about half full.

Place in oven and bake for 15-18 minutes, or until puffy and deep golden colour.

Let cool for 10 mins, add lemon curd to centres with blueberries and sifted icing sugar.

Enjoy! n

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n Caitriona Barron
Pic: Caitriona Barron.

ooted in exford

Mark Cooke invites you to grow along with him.

Hello fellow gardeners! As we step into April, it's time to gear up for some exciting planting endeavours in our gardens. I want to share some insights into growing three delightful vegetables: pumpkins, peas, and cucumbers. Whether you're a novice or a seasoned gardener, these veggies are sure to add a splash of freshness to your plate come harvest time.

Let's start with pumpkins, the symbol of Halloween. To get started, pick up some pumpkin seeds from your local shop or online store. As the weather starts to warm up, around mid to late spring, it's time to sow your pumpkin seeds. You can plant them directly into well-drained soil around late May but I like to give them a head start and plant them in pots first.

As summer rolls around, typically in June or July, it's time to transplant your pumpkin seedlings into their final growing spots. Make sure that it is a sunny spot as pumpkins thrive in these conditions. Ensure they have plenty of space to sprawl and continue to water them regularly. With patience and care, you can expect to harvest your pumpkins around September or October, depending on the variety. Keep an eye on them as they mature, and when the skin turns firm and the vines begin to wither, it's time to harvest your homegrown pumpkins!

Next up, let's talk about spring onions, these are great additions to salads, sambos, and stir-fries. Spring onions are in-

Enniscorthy Community Allotments, and has a huge passion for growing fruit and veg which he shares on his Instagram platform @rootedinwexford which has over 7,500 followers. Mark describes himself very much as a ‘hobby gardener’ who is not academically trained in horticulture. He started planting with very little knowledge a few years ago and that knowledge has now ‘mushroomed’! Mark loves sharing his passion for growing with readers of the Slaney News.

credibly easy to grow and can be sown directly into the ground as soon as the soil warms up late spring. Choose a sunny spot with well-drained soil and scatter your spring onion seeds in clumps across your beds (about 10-15 seeds).

Cover the seeds lightly with soil and keep the area consistently moist until germination occurs, usually within a couple of weeks. As the seedlings grow, it’s a good idea to cover them so the birds don’t dig them up out of the ground on you. Spring onions are relatively low maintenance, requiring only occasional watering and minimal fertilisation.

With proper care, you can expect to harvest your spring onions in about 8-12 weeks after sowing. Harvest them when they reach the desired size, typically when they are about the size of a pencil. I like to trim off the green tops as needed and enjoy the fresh flavour on my sambos!

Last but not least, let's talk about cucumbers, the crisp and refreshing addition to any salad or sandwich. Cucumbers are warm-season vegetables, so they do best in a greenhouse but there are many that are suitable to grow outside too. If you want to grow them outside ensure you check the packets to make sure that they are suitable. Around late spring to early summer is the perfect time to get them in the ground.

If you grow them outside make sure to choose a sunny spot with well-drained soil. Space them around a foot apart to give them room to spread out. Keep the soil consistently moist, especially during

the hot summer months as cucumbers like plenty of water.

As your cucumber plants grow, you will need to provide some support, such as trellises or cages, to keep the vines off the ground and prevent them from rotting. With proper care and attention, you can expect to harvest your cucumbers in about 50-70 days after sowing, depending on the variety. I’m trying a snack variety this year which means that the cucumbers are small and fit easily into lunchboxes. Harvest them when they're young and tender for the best flavour, and enjoy the fruits of your labour all summer long.

So there you have it, a beginner's guide to growing pumpkins, spring onions, and cucumbers. I hope you found these tips helpful and inspiring for your own garden adventures. For more gardening tips and inspiration, be sure to follow me on Instagram @rootedinwexford. Happy gardening! n

Slaney food & drink 10th April 2024 - Page 111

Your local

Slimming World Consultants in Enniscorthy

Providing you with a huge choice of sessions throughout the week:

Tuesdays @ 6.30pm

The Salt n Pepper Pot, Community Workshop

Call Tony on 087 1785384

Wednesdays @ 8.00am, 9.30am, 11.00am, 5.30pm and 7.00pm

Enniscorthy Rugby Club – Call Trish on 087 3607615

Thursdays @ 9.30am

Enniscorthy Rugby Club – Call Trish on 087 3607615

Saturdays @ 9.00am and 10.30am

The Salt n Pepper Pot, Community Workshop

Call Tony on 087 1785384

Slaney ad Slaney food & drink Page 112 - 10th April 2024


April is spring-clean season and as many of us take to our kitchens to clear out cupboards and pantries, we take a look at the “Top 5 Must Haves for Every Pantry” which allows us transform the simplest of dishes to an array of culinary delights.

1. Extra Olive Oil

From sautéing vegetables to drizzling over salads, olive oil adds depth and richness to any dish. Its fruity notes can elevate a humble tomato sauce or add a velvety texture to homemade vinaigrettes. Adding it to marinades, helps tenderize meats and infuses them with flavor. Its uses are endless.

2. Garlic

This aromatic bulb is the cornerstone of cuisines worldwide. Whether minced, crushed, or roasted whole, garlic imparts a pungent, earthy flavor enhancing savory dishes. Adding flavour to soups, stews, and sauces or tossed it with roasted vegetables for a tasty side dish. And lets not forget the humble garlic bread, simple yet irresistible to soak up sauces or enjoyed on its own.

3. Canned Tomatoes

Versatile and convenient, canned tomatoes serve as the backbone of many dishes, from hearty pasta sauces to zesty salsas. Crushed, diced, or pureed, these offer bright acidity and sweetness which balance rich flavors. Whip up a quick marinara sauce, simmer a comforting chili, or layer them in a lasagna – the possibilities are endless.

4. Dried Herbs & Spices

No pantry is complete without a selection of herbs and spices. These flavor-packed powders can transform ordinary ingredients into extraordinary creations. Sprinkle them generously over meats, vegetables, and grains, or use them to craft homemade spice blends and rubs. With the right combination, you can transport your taste buds to distant lands without ever leaving your kitchen!

5. Rice

Rice deserves a permanent spot in your cupboard. Its neutral flavor and fluffy texture makes it the perfect accompaniment to a wide array of dishes. Whether you're serving up stir-fries, curries, or hearty grain bowls, rice provides a comforting and satisfying base. Experiment with different varieties like jasmine, basmati, or brown rice to add depth and complexity to your meals.

These five cupboard staples are the building blocks of countless culinary adventures, but if you don’t want the hassle of cooking, pop into The Bailey Bar & Eatery in Enniscorthy where our chefs will do all the work for you.

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Best of luck to Cafe 98 now open at the 1798 Centre

Last month, Tim and Fiona Phelan’s new cafe at The National 1798 Rebellion Centre in Enniscorthy opened to the public, and since then the high quality fare on offer has gone down exceptionally well with both locals and tourists alike.

Tim is originally from Waterford but has been resident in Bree for many years while Fiona is a Galbally native. Both are Ballymaloe trained which helps explain the wonderful standard of food that is being produced in their newly installed, state-of-the-art kitchen at the 1798 Centre.

Tim worked over the years in several leading restaurants around Co. Wexford and is also be known to many through his involvement in getting the Farmers Market set up in Enniscorthy in 2004, and serving on its committee for 16 years while operating a stall there re-

nowned for its bread, cakes, pesto, etc as well as hot food.

A serious motorbike accident a couple of years ago forced Tim to take things a bit easier, but the lure of the restaurant trade combined with the opportunity to operate in such an iconic building as the 1798 Centre proved too much to resist and voila he’s back at the helm again and delighted to be serving the people of Enniscorthy and visitors from all over the world.

Tim and Fiona produce as much of their own food as possible in-house, as well as supporting local producers and suppliers which they see as a key objective.

The full restaurant opening hours are Mon-Fri 9am to 4.30pm serving mouthwatering breakfast and lunch menus, and also open for tea/coffee and sweet treats on Saturdays and Sundays 12 noon to 4.30pm.

You can find Cafe 98 on Facebook and Instagram, and tel: 085 1993775.

Tim, Fiona and staff members Jessica Durkin, Alexandra Giran and Pasquale Casciello (pictured below) are very much looking forward to seeing you soon at their impressive Cafe 98 at the National 1798 Rebellion Centre in Enniscorthy. n

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Paula takes the helm

County Wexford Chamber announces Paula Roche

as new CEO

County Wexford Chamber is delighted to announce the appointment of Paula Roche as its new Chief Executive Officer, effective 11th March 2024. With a background in senior leadership and delivering customer solutions, Paula brings a wealth of experience in driving business growth to the Chamber.

A Wexford native, Paula’s previous roles include Managing Director of Consumer Solutions at Equifax Ltd, the global consumer credit reporting agency. In that role, Paula’s responsibilities encompassed strategic management of revenue and expenditure, while driving cross-functional delivery across product, marketing, change, and sales.

Working at the top-tier level in the financial and tech sector in London, Dublin, and Wexford, Paula has spearheaded critical regulatory programmes, implemented large-scale digital transformations, and led the product development lifecycle from design to launch.

Aligning with Strategic Vision

Paula's appointment comes at a pivotal time as County Wexford Chamber embarks on its "Sustainable Prosperity for All" mission, as outlined in its Strategic Plan. Her leadership will be instrumental in advancing the Chamber's strategic objectives, which include:

Promoting sustainability in business and the wider community, in alignment with the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Representing and growing membership, ensuring the voice of County Wexford businesses is heard at all levels.

Advancing economic development in County Wexford by showcasing it as a centre of business excellence and supporting innovation and entrepreneurship.

Encouraging tourism, culture, and the nighttime economy, working to enhance County Wexford's reputation as a vibrant destination.

Supporting workforce development and education initiatives, collaborating with educational institutions to nurture talent within the community.

Exciting Chapter for County Wexford Chamber

Lorcán Kinsella, President of County Wexford Chamber, expressed enthusiasm for Paula's leadership, stating, “Paula's appointment marks the beginning of an exciting chapter for the Chamber. We are confident that, under her leadership, County Wexford Chamber will continue to champion the interests of its members while contributing to the economic vitality and community wellbeing of County Wexford.”

As the newly appointed CEO, Paula Roche expressed her commitment to delivering on the goals outlined by the Chamber. “I am really looking forward to implementing the Chamber’s purpose to connect, support, and represent the vibrant business community of County Wexford. My own leadership style is focused on collaboration and inclusivity, delivering results, and building strong relationships with stakeholders. With the support of the Board and the Chamber team, I am energised about the exciting year ahead for County Wexford, including the boost that Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann will bring to the business and wider community of our county.”

About County Wexford Chamber:

County Wexford Chamber is dedicated to promoting and supporting business growth and development within the region. As an advocate for the business community, the Chamber works tirelessly to foster a thriving economic environment that benefits all stakeholders. n

Slaney buSineSS & finance 10th April 2024- Page 115
Paula Roche, CEO, County Wexford Chamber, and Lorcan Kinsella, President, County Wexford Chamber.
Slaney ad Slaney buSineSS & finance Page 116 - 10th April 2024 LOCAL ENTERPRISE OFFICE Wexford County Council, Carricklawn, Wexford, Y35 WY93 Contact: 053 9196020 Email:


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Slaney buSineSS & finance 10th April 2024 - Page 117

Visit Wexford networking

Visit Wexford, the organisation dedicated to promoting tourism throughout County Wexford, hosted a highly successful Industry Networking Event at Wells House near Enniscorthy last month. Drawing together approximately 100 members of the tourism industry, the morning was filled with insightful presentations, engaging discussions, and valuable networking opportunities.

Colm Neville, Chairperson of Visit Wexford, set the tone with a comprehensive overview of the role and strategic direction of Visit Wexford. He emphasised siezing all opportunities linked with Rosslare Europort and fostering connections with Visit Savannah in the USA.

The team from Rocket Science Media, the recently appointed marketing company tasked with executing the Visit Wexford Brand Marketing Strategy, were on hand to present their marketing plans to the group, with both Amanda Whitmore and Neill Ikbal dis-


cussing the various elements of the plans throughout the morning.

Insights into broader plans by Failte Ireland and Ireland’s Ancient East were shared by Sarah Fitzpatrick, Regional Manager for Failte Ireland's ‘Ireland’s Ancient East’. Both Sarah and Carmel Moran from the Local Enterprise Office elaborated on the range of resources and supports available to businesses within the tourism sector, encouraging their utilisation.

Billy Byrne, County Wexford's Tourism Officer, delivered an impressive overview of the Wexfordia Tourism Investment Projects. These initiatives, undertaken by Wexford County Council in collaboration with Failte Ireland, represent a total investment of €26 million, aiming to increase bed nights and enhancing the economic impact of tourism in County Wexford and the South East region.

Key projects discussed included the Curracloe Watersports & Activity Centre, the Southeast Greenway, Forth Mountain Activity Centre, and the Monck Street Retractable Roof, the first of its kind in Ireland. Additional works are to be carried out at Hook Lighthouse, the Irish National Heritage Park, the Dunbrody Famine ship and the new Norman building in New Ross.

The Industry Networking Event wasn't just informative; it provided ample op-

portunities for attendees to connect with one another. Facilitated by MC Cllr. Maura Bell, the event featured a lively fireside chat and an interactive Q&A session with all speakers.

The event underpins Visit Wexford's commitment to supporting and promoting the tourism industry in County Wexford, encouraging collaboration among stakeholders, and driving sustainable growth in the region's tourism sector.

Reflecting on the importance of such events, Cllr. Maura Bell remarked, "The Industry Networking Event hosted by Visit Wexford was a fantastic opportunity for tourism professionals to come together, share insights, and make valuable connections. It's events like these that truly highlight the collaborative spirit within our industry and reaffirm our commitment to showcasing all that County Wexford has to offer."

For more information about Visit Wexford, please visit n

Slaney ad Slaney buSineSS & finance Page 118 - 10th April 2024
Wexford hosts successful Industry Networking Event, Wells House, 5th March 2024 Sarah Fitzpatrick, Regional Manager for Ireland’s Ancient East. Billy Byrne, County Wexford's Tourism Officer.

Colm elected vice-president of national body

Hotelier Colm Neville has been elected Vice President of the Irish Hotels Federation (IHF), the national organisation of the hotel and guesthouse sector.

Mr Neville is the owner of the Riverside Park Hotel & Leisure Club, the Crown Quarter hotel in Wexford and the Midlands Park Hotel in Portlaoise. He joins IHF President Michael Magner and fellow Vice President Matt O’Connor in representing over 900 hotels and guesthouses, which employ 65,000 people throughout the country.

Mr Neville has been an active member of the IHF since 2007 and brings extensive experience to the role of Vice President having previously served as Chair of the IHF’s South East Branch and as a member of the IHF National Council and Management Committee.

Commenting on his election, Colm said: “It is a tremendous honour to be elected Vice President of the Irish Hotels Federation and to represent our sector, which makes such an important contribution to the economy. I look forward to working closely with my IHF colleagues and engaging with our Government and industry partners to address the challenges facing our sector and wider tourism industry. A particular focus for us over the coming year is the need for meaningful measures from the Government to tackle the very high operating costs of tourism and hospitality businesses. This is a growing concern in terms of our competitiveness and requires decisive Government action.” n

Slaney buSineSS & finance 10th April 2024 - Page 119
Bridget Purcell, Recruitment Consultant, with Paula Roche, new Chief Executive Officer, Co. Wexford Chamber, at recent event in GreenTechHQ, Enniscorthy. Colm Neville. Pic: Ger Lawlor. Congrats to Coláiste an Átha, Kilmuckridge, student Katelyn Browne Kehoe, winner of the One to Watch award, at last month’s Local Enterprise Office Wexford’s Student Enterprise Awards.

Announcing the integration of Enniscorthy & District Chamber with County Wexford Chamber are L-R: Ed Murphy, board member of Enniscorthy & District Chamber; Paula Roche, CEO, County Wexford Chamber; and Lorcan Kinsella, President, County Wexford Chamber.

Business community unity

County Wexford Chamber was excited last month to announce the integration of Enniscorthy & District Chamber, with the negotiation process having been chaired by Lorcan Kinsella, President of the County Wexford Chamber. This significant step heralds a new chapter for both chambers, enhancing support, expanding networking opportunities, and strengthening advocacy for businesses throughout County Wexford.

The unanimous decision by the members of Enniscorthy & District Chamber on March 11th, 2024, demonstrates a shared vision and dedication to fostering a vibrant business environment across County Wexford. By coming together, the two chambers unite the four pivotal districts of New Ross, Wexford, Gorey, and Enniscorthy, forming a unified force for economic development

and improved services for members.

"The inclusion of the Enniscorthy & District Chamber marks a significant milestone for our community and signals a promising future for local businesses,” said Lorcan Kinsella. “I am honoured to have chaired the negotiations leading to this successful outcome, underscoring our collective ambition to enhance and unify the business landscape across County Wexford."

With Enniscorthy & District Chamber now part of County Wexford Chamber, this combined effort will continue under the County Wexford Chamber banner.

The focus will be on delivering expanded innovative support, advocacy, and services to a broader membership base.

Special thanks are extended to the negotiation committee members from

both chambers: Lorcan Kinsella, Brendan Crowley, Conor Robinson, and Mary Browne from County Wexford Chamber; and Michael Dempsey (President of Enniscorthy & District Chamber), Ed Murphy, Eric Barron, Colm Neville and Majella Wall representing Enniscorthy & District Chamber. Their dedication and collaborative efforts have been crucial in achieving this landmark agreement.

As it embarks on this exciting new phase, County Wexford Chamber remains committed to advancing the regional economic landscape and providing unparalleled support to its members. It eagerly anticipates engaging with members from all districts, listening to their needs, and collectively working towards a thriving future for the County Wexford business community. n

Slaney ad Slaney buSineSS & finance Page 120 - 10th April 2024

Neville Hotels opens its new Ravenport Resort in Curracloe

Ravenport Resort at Curracloe is a holiday complex comprising a 58-bedroom hotel, luxury 2- and 3-bedroom holiday lodges and an 18-hole championship golf course designed by renowned course architects Fry Straka. The hotel building sits within a woodland area and commands panoramic views over the golf course layout to the Wexford coastline beyond. It is the newest addition to the Neville Hotels group and is now open for business.

Shane Carroll has been announced as its new General Manager. With over 30 years of experience in the hospitality indus try, including ownership of the award-winning Silver Fox Seafood Restaurant, Kilmore Quay, Shane brings a wealth of expertise to his role.

Shane's background in operations management and customer relations, coupled with his commitment to excellence, make him an invaluable addition to the Ravenport Resort team. His passion for supporting local suppliers and dedication to providing exceptional customer service align perfectly with Ravenport's values of excellence and community engagement.

proven track record of success and his deep understanding of the industry make him the ideal leader for Ravenport Resort."

The second phase of the project, including 22 holiday lodges and the 18-hole championship golf course designed by Jason Straka of Fry Straka from Ohio, is due to open this summer.

Speaking about his appointment as General Manager of Ravenport Resort, Shane commented: “I am delighted to join the Ravenport Resort team as General Manager, and I am eager to contribute to the success of Neville Hotels. Together, we will create memorable experiences for our guests and uphold Neville Hotels reputation for excellence in hospitality.”

"We are excited to welcome Shane Carroll as our new General Manager," said Therese Kelly, Director, Neville Hotels. "His

The hotel, located on a 75-hectare site, has been designed by HM Architects in Waterford, who have previously worked with Neville Hotels on the renovation and redesign of The Tower Hotel in Waterford, and most recently, the renovation and extension of The Bridge House at the Kilkenny River Court Hotel.

For more information about Ravenport Resort please visit: n

Slaney buSineSS & finance 10th April 2024 - Page 121
Shane Carroll, General Manager, Ravenport Resort, Curracloe.

Enniscorthy Forum hosts Paris

The Enniscorthy Forum hosted a workshop on March 5, 2024, ‘Rebuilding disaster zones to high standards of performance – Ukraine and beyond’ to support the Buildings and Climate Global Forum hosted in Paris, France, by the government of France and the United Nations Environment Programme.

This workshop brought together officials and staff from both national and local governments, policy experts and advocates, and leading building practitioners for an engaging session on the reconstruction of Ukraine as an example of supporting communities that have been destroyed by conflict or natural disasters.

The tragedy of destructive conflict or natural disasters sets the stage and hence opportunity to rebuild affected areas to a new standard of performance. It is unfortunate that examples of such “opportunities” abound around the world. Ukraine is one such opportunity for reconstruction over the near and long term. Design and deployment of high-performance buildings that are truly sustainable and that support a just transition away from fossil energy will enable the country to rebound from the war with buildings that deliver on a broad spectrum of quality-of-life measures including, notably, health, comfort, resilience, affordability, security, and the like. The session brought together leaders from multiple social, business, and educational sectors to describe the tangible commitments, milestones and action steps needed to support attainment of the Building Breakthrough Target in Ukraine.

Barbara-Anne Murphy, CEO of Enniscorthy Forum, observed that, “As part of the shift in the building community of Ukraine, a deep and enduring transition to high performance buildings will require a shift in the culture of the building industries that drives innovation, action, and change with the requisite knowledge and skills. Such transformation can be achieved only through activation, training, and education from youth through advanced professionals.”

The technical challenge of building performance transformation is vast and focused not only on individual buildings, but how buildings leverage one another and community systems, especially the electricity system, that form the infrastructural ecosystem within which buildings deliver needed services efficiently to their occupants. The transformation of the energy system of Ukraine likely will involve a reorientation to and integration with the electrical grid of western Europe, deployment of distributed and intermittent generation, and reconstitution as a smoothly operating national grid. Elements of the holistic equation include residential, commercial and industrial buildings, green power generation, distribution and load management, explosion of data and data centres with district energy potential from recovered heat, and links to water, waste water, transportation, and other essential community services and activities.

The key recommendations emerging from the session:

While it is essential to deliver short-term reconstruction of destroyed communities and infrastructure, it is also important to set out

a long-term strategy for a resilient, economically viable, and sustainable Ukraine so that action taken in the near-term is not in conflict with a long view;

Training and education in the professions needed for reconstruction will be vital; actions in this area must start now and EU and the North Atlantic have the capacity to provide the needed resources without further delay; Developing a fully-connected ecosystem to enable delivery of high performance communities will require efforts to align and coordinate the range of industries involve as well as the citizen, policy-makers and financiers; The needs of the different regions in Ukraine will vary. Financing sources and effective financial models are required for the reconstruction of Ukrainian cities, focused on the specific needs identified by the local stakeholders.

Addressing these recommendations, the Enniscorthy Forum is launching an initiative to support Ukraine and other conflict zones in leveraging the opportunity they confront – first with workforce training, but followed on quickly with in-the-field, fully-resourced projects with support from the EU and the North Atlantic community and in collaboration with local communities. This session explored various approaches and framed the discussion around commitments and action plans. The session set the stage for Enniscorthy Forum’s Ukraine reconstruction task force to outline actions in multiple sectors and milestones in education, tangible projects, and building-infrastructure interdependence to enable a rapid and sustainable recovery from the tragedy of war.

Slaney ad Slaney buSineSS & finance Page 122 - 10th April 2024
Above left: Scott Foster (Senior Advisor Enniscorthy Forum) with French Government Minister at the Buildings + Climate Global Forum in Paris March 2024. Above right: Members of Enniscorthy Forum's Building Action Coalition at the Buildings + Climate Global Forum, in Paris, March 2024. Breandán Goss (Senior Innovation & Accelerator Manager, Trinity College Dublin); Marc Costa (Director of Policy & Planning The Energy Coalition, California); Duydu Erten (Turkeco Construction & Energy); Scott Foster (Senior Advisor Enniscorthy Forum); Barbara-Anne Murphy (CEO Enniscorthy Forum); Richard Orr (Head of Asset & Regeneration River Clyde Homes, Scotland); Michael Bennett (Michael Bennett Group, Enniscorthy).


The Enniscorthy Forum joined forces with The UK Department of Energy Security and Net Zero and The U.S. Green Building Council to host a workshop on 6th March 2024 entitled ‘Engaging policy to advance low carbon, resilient communities and quality of life’ to support the Buildings and Climate Global Forum, hosted in Paris by the government of France and the United Nations Environment Programme.

The pre-forum event was organised to:

Highlight the importance of holistic urban policy and planning for tangible progress on climate and sustainable development;

Initiate a dialogue among capital cities in the Global North and the Global South to ensure both mutual learning and sharing of experiences and to highlight successful policies in different contexts;

Engage in discussion of common metrics and methods for data on building performance to achieve multiple climate and social objectives, and

Launch a project on integration of grids and the built environment to enhance building performance, enable distributed and intermittent generation, and accommodate new business models for provision of energy services.

The workshop brought together officials and staff from both national and local governments, policy experts and advocates, and leading building practitioners to explore the policies needed to decarbonise buildings and to create more resilient, livable communities.

The aim of the workshop was to prepare par-

ticipants at the Forum with a global perspective by presenting examples from countries across the world, consider the role of life cycle assessments and data in the Buildings Breakthrough, and promote a holistic approach to building decarbonisation policy including resilience, education and systems thinking.

The key outcomes of the workshop:

National government and city representatives from around the globe along with policy advocates presented successful policies at decarbonising buildings. The session outlined a framework for buildings policies, differences among countries, and emerging approaches.

There was discussion on considering Global South construction practices in efforts to align LCA and near-zero building standards.

The session featured a workshop on different types of building data available in different parts of the world, inputs on the use of WLC data for policy making, and a launch of efforts to develop a global buildings database and tracker for reducing resource use and informing whole life carbon policy.

The session also featured a workshop centring on approaches to collaboration to engage all present in envisioning and advocating next step policies.

The concluding session explored how buildings can serve communities, contribute to flexible grids, and lead with systems thinking and integrative processes for resilience and equity.

In her concluding remarks, Barbara-Anne Murphy, CEO of Enniscorthy Forum, noted, “Getting buildings and the built environment right is the one thing that can deliver important, impactful results in a relevant timeframe. We don’t need to wait for nuclear fusion – we have the technology, we have the

capital – we have the know-how to make a real difference in the performance of buildings.” There was consensus in the session that there is a need to act quickly and at global scale to deliver high performance buildings in order to meet the climate challenge and deliver on quality-of-life aspirations around the world. The climate is changing, resilience is essential, and the built environment is at the heart of resilience.

Over the course of the day the importance of connected-up policy was highlighted, notably at various levels of government from local to national to global. Life-cycle analysis was considered imperative in delivering meaningful processes and data. Equally, dialogue among cities, exchanges between global north and global south was recognised as critically important, and many participants recognised that innovations and the solutions for tomorrow will come from the global south. A twoway dialogue with an ability to listen will be needed. Finally, a panel discussing the connections of buildings and the built environment with grids and networks presented the technical and economic opportunities that optimal integration offers and made a strong case for systems thinking, holistic policy frameworks, and a collaborative coordinated industrial and administrative ecosystem. The essence of the session can be summarised as “done right, the building sector and the built environment is the one area that can deliver on climate change and quality of life quickly and at global scale. It is essential that all players in the sector remain pragmatic, agnostic and effective but deliver high performance – it is necessary to share knowledge, disseminate best practices, and change the culture of the industries and administration involved in buildings and the built environment. In essence, the transformation will involve education, training, demonstration, and communication.” n

Slaney buSineSS & finance 10th April 2024 - Page 123
Above left: Barbara-Anne Murphy, Michael Bennett, Scott Foster and Richard Orr, Enniscorthy Forum's Buildings Action Coalition at the Buildings + Climate Global Forum in Paris, March 2024. Above right: Scott Foster (Senior Advisor Enniscorthy Forum), Barbara-Anne Murphy (CEO Enniscorthy Forum), Melanie Jans-Singh (UK Department for Energy Security & Net Zero), Elizabeth Beardsley (Senior Policy Counsel at US Green Building Council), Gracie Timlin (US Green Building Council).

Co. Wexford winners in the SFA awards 2024

Little Learning Steps: Winner in the Emerging New Business category.

Little Learning Steps was founded in January 2021 by Terri, a primary school teacher. The business provides reusable, fun, interactive learning products for children, with two main products: interactive learning books and learning colouring mats aimed at children aged three to ten. The interactive learning books consist of 20 activities – 10 velcro activities and 10 dry-wipe activities. Currently it has two levelled books, one aimed at preschool children and one aimed at junior infant level. Its learning mats are wipeable, silicone colouring mats which are all designed by Terri with the key concepts of learning in mind.

ZEUS Scooters: Innovator of the Year Winner.

ZEUS Mobility makes city travel easy, enjoyable and environmentally friendly. It has a fleet of 9,000 electric scooters available for short and long-term rental in 60+ cities in Germany and the UK. Leading the way in sustainability for the industry, ZEUS has launched the world’s first solar powered charging station for shared e-scooters. n

Page 124 - 10th April 2024
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It’s early April and its been raining since the end of June last year... It has been relentless! As a country vet you work out in all sorts of conditions and get used to the rain. I remember seeing a poster in an outdoor pursuits outlet and it said 'There's no such thing as bad weather... just bad clothing!'

Well I agree with that to a point but then you see farmers struggling to keep feed to their animals because the land is saturated from constant rain. Tillage farmers can't get out to cultivate their land, sow crops, and are still reeling from the disastrous harvest of last year. Some unable to pay their merchant bills from last year have carried these over and were expecting and counting on to pay for them with this year’s crop. Well ordinarily they would have the crops well sown by this stage but because of the relentless rain there was no opportunity to get machinery onto the land.

I remember looking at a netflix programme Kiss the Ground narrated by Woody Harrelson and featuring a North Dakota farmer who spoke of four successive crop failures and of being almost bankrupt... So he set about farming a different way and 25 years later has tripled his acreage and is going from strength to strength. I had the privilege of meeting this farmer last year. His name is Gabe Browne and he now speaks in various countries around the world on Regenerative Agriculture. It's all about getting the top soil working again. The humus layer of the soil is the living layer of the soil and can hold 100 times its own volume of water when it is working right. Part of the problem as I see it is that with

the modern intensification of mono cultures e.g. rye grass only or barley sown on same fields for 40+ years, with applications of synthetic ureas, sprays etc, it slowly has depleted the soil’s own microbiome... yes the natural bacteria fungi nematodes and mycorrhiza. These are just a few of the immeasurable amounts of natural-occurring living organisms that should inhabit the humus layer (topsoil).

One statistic which might throw some light on why our rivers run a dark muddy brown colour now after a heavy rainfall is that we now have only approximately 10% of the mycorrhizal population in the soil and this is what holds the soil together. Without these essential microorganisms there is nothing to hold the soil together so in hot countries they become dust bowls but here it contributes to the flooding ,the declining fish populations and poor water quality.

This isn't neccessarily the farmers’ fault but the policy makers and the drive to have cheap food to the detriment of the land, the animals and all of us. There are farmers who are already making the changes and are ahead of the curve in making changes to help turn things around. This is the farming of the future in my mind.... nurturing nature, less chemical inputs, more trees as they hold water, aerate soil, reduce compaction, and area shelter for livestock.

Farmers are hard-working, resilient and inventive people. They've been put through the ringer this last ten months and certainly need a break. Here's to a bright sunny April and a new dawn for agriculture in the long run n

If you have a topic you’d like Joe Kavanagh to address please email Slaney News at:

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Slaney petS 10th April 2024 - Page 125

The Renault Clio is an international bestseller and one of the French brand’s best loved small cars. It’s recently been updated to keep it competitive with a few small tweaks to the styling, addition of a new Esprit Alpine trim level and some enhanced equipment onboard.

Available as a simple petrol manual or as an even more fuel efficient hybrid, the 2024 Renault Clio range kicks off from €24,845. The facelifted Clio gets a new front end that gives it a meaner and sportier look, particularly in the top of the range Esprit Alpine – inspired by

Bunclody native Caroline Kidd brings us reviews of the latest new cars to arrive in Ireland. Caroline is the founder and editor of the online automotive magazine Changing Lanes and a jury member for Irish Car of the Year.

Find out more about her editorial and commercial copywriting services at


Renault’s Alpine brand of sports cars.

The grille now stretches the full width between the LED headlights, while the new F1-style blade in the front bumper is finished in grey on the Esprit Alpine. Another striking feature is the new half diamond shaped LED daytime running lights that give it some real dynamic appeal.

Alloy wheel sizes start at 16-inch, with the Esprit Alpine getting a fancier 17inch diamond cut set with blue or grey centre caps, depending on the body colour. There are new clear covers for

the rear lights but otherwise it’s business as usual for the Clio.

There are a few tweaks inside too. Nothing major but the Esprit Alpine replaces the old RS Line and has a few sporty additions. There's impressive digital tech on board and an upmarket feel – particularly in the new Esprit Alpine (from €28,345). Front sports seats come with blue contrast stitching and Alpine logos to add a sporty feel. There’s a fabric dashboard panel with a French flag and Tricolour stitching in the steering wheel.

Entry level models come with a 7-inch

Slaney ad Slaney motoring Page 126 - 10th April 2024

digital driver display and 7-inch touchscreen that’s easy to use, with now wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto to make smartphone integration even simpler. The Esprit Alpine gets the flashier 10-inch digital driver display and 9.3-inch portrait-style touchscreen.

Standard features on the entry level Evolution model include keyless entry, automatic air con and rear parking sensors. The Techno adds a reversing camera and wireless smartphone charging, while the Esprit Alpine is the most luxurious of all with heated steering wheel/heated front seats and safety equipment like adaptive cruise control, blind spot warning and rear cross traffic alert.

simple too. It has more power (145hp) than the entry level petrol and contributes to a more mature feeling on the road. Over my time with the car, average fuel consumption was 4.9 litres per 100 kilometres, making it cheap to run too.

The Clio feels roomy enough inside for a small car though the back seat will be more comfortable for two rather than three. The petrol models are best for boot space with a Golf-beating 391 litres. Opt for the hybrid and this goes down to 301 litres. But it’s still a practical space for a few suitcases or shopping bags.

The Clio is available with a 1.0-litre turbo petrol engine with 90hp and a 6speed manual or as a 1.6-litre hybrid that promises even greater fuel efficiency. The hybrid is more expensive to buy (from €30,545) but offers a few benefits particularly in town driving where it can run for up to 80% of the time on its small capacity battery alone powering just the electric motor to turn the wheels. Nor does it require a plug, with the battery being topped up during braking and deceleration.

It’s smooth to drive with a multimode automatic transmission making it

The Clio is good fun to drive with direct steering and good body control through bends. Comfort and refinement levels are pretty good for a small car though it does get noisy over coarser road surfaces and doesn’t do much to take the edge off the bumps and holes of Irish rural roads.

In conclusion, it's hard not to find yourself enamoured by the Clio’s charm. It’s compact enough to be fun, yet big enough to offer some decent practicality. It’s stylish and well-equipped making it one of the most desirable small cars on sale. Yet it's hard to justify the hybrid’s price tag over the basic petrol. Either way, the Clio is still one for the shopping list. n

Slaney motoring 10th April 2024 - Page 127 AUTO REPAIR NCT Preparation – Repairs – Timing Belts Clutches – General Servicing – Etc
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The next golf generation

Resident Enniscorthy Golf Club Professional Stephen Fitzpatrick has been holding a series of very successful kids’ golf camps. And the good news for anyone who hasn’t participated to date is that there is one more camp left starting on 19th April. To reserve a slot text 086 3656713. n

Minister Browne confirms funding for Sports Active Wexford

Wexford TD and Minister of State for Law Reform James Browne has confirmed that Sports Active Wexford will receive €378,392 in funding this year.

€378,392 includes €378,392 in core programme funding and €8,500 towards supporting women in Sport.

Welcoming the funding, Minister Browne commended how Sports Active Wexford “is at the heart of sport in County Wexford. I’m delighted to confirm that the Government’s investment in core funding will rise to ensure that they have the ability to encourage participation in sport and physical activity across County Wexford... The investment in County Wexford forms part of an excellent record in delivering investment in sport. Nationally, the funding tots up to the highest ever level of core investment into National Governing Bodies and Local Sports Partnerships, increasing by almost €11.9m over the lifecycle of the National Sports Policy 2018-2027.” n

Slaney ad Slaney Sport Page 128 - 10th April 2024

Michelle takes charge


Enniscorthy's Michelle O’Neill was an assistant match official for the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup, her third World Cup having having also been an assistant in 2015.

In 2022 she became the first Irish referee to officiate at the Olympic Games as one of 99 match officials from 51 countries chosen by FIFA for that summer’s men’s and women’s football tournaments.

In 2019 Michelle became the first ever Irish person to officiate at a World Cup Final (USA v Netherlands) and was also part of the first ever female refereeing team to officiate at a Men’s Supercup Final in Istanbul between Liverpool & Chelsea in 2019.

Unfortunately, due to another commitment, the Slaney News had to leave the match early so we're not sure if any yellow or red cards were brandished by Michelle but we suspect all the participants were on their best behaviour!!! n

Slaney Sport 10th April 2024 - Page 129

Enniscorthy rugby news...

President Gerald Dunne hosted 50 people last month for an All-Ireland League pre-match lunch. Travelling club Bangor were represented by Club President Drew Kennedy and Chairman Ian Kennedy. The room was filled with sponsors, local politicians, the trustees of the rugby club, club members and members of the local community.

Tony Ensor was unable to make the lunch to speak so trustee Nicholas Sweetman stood in at short notice and regaled tales of his time playing rugby. Annette Soraine, chairwoman, filled guests in on the ambitious plans for the future of the club and upcoming developments.

Credit goes to the sub committee who organised and set up the event as well as the team of helpers that helped out on the day.

Following the lunch guests were treated to a great performance of rugby on the pitch with the senior team beating Bangor 48-15.

Annette Soraine, Chairperson, with Aoife Wafer.

Ahead of this year's Women’s Six Nations, Aoife Wafer presented her Ireland jersey from the match v Spain, her second cap for Ireland, to her Enniscorthy club. Aoife got this cap in October of 2023. Aoife presented the jersey to club president Gerald Dunne.

Aoife has achieved massive success and the club are extremely proud of her journey as a rugby player. Aoife, along with Katie Whelan, was named in the Ireland Squad for the Women's Tik Tok Six Nations. Aoife started in Ireland’s game against France in Le Mans putting in an impressive performance scoring Ireland’s first try of the tournament and her own first international try.

Aoife was also awarded player of the round for round 2 of the Six Nations championship. n

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Aoife Wafer and her parents with Club President Gerald Dunne. Above and right: Always a warm hand of friendship at Enniscorthy Rugby Club.

Enniscorthy RFC in association with the Alzheimer Society of Ireland will hold a Sporting Memories event on Sunday 14th of April at 3.00pm in the clubhouse.

Sporting Memories brings people together to reminisce about their lives through the medium of sport. We would love to have people who have had a connection to the club down the years join us to share their memories of Enniscorthy Rugby Club, to look through memorabilia and to connect with old friends and teammates. The Sporting Memories programme is led by people with a desire to help people with dementia, their families and supporters to stay engaged in their communities.

If anyone has old photos / programmes / memorabilia that they could share for the event, please drop Annette an email at There will be refreshments served. n


Ladies Football

Shamrocks Ladies Gaelic Football Club in Enniscorthy has been chosen to take part in the Lidl and LGFA, in association with Jigsaw, One Good Club Initiative.

Over an approx ten-week period, the club will take part in events and schedules to promote positive mental health within the community and especially in young girls and women. There’s great prizes at stake so the club is really taking it seriously and have the full backing of Wexford LGFA. p?id=100057882510384 n

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Aoife Wafer with Declan O’Brien
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Glynn 5k charity run in aid of Glynn National School, 3rd March 2024
Above left: Jackie Stamp and Niall Sheil. Above centre: Chantelle Roche-Cosgrage, Aoife and Emma Murphy. Above right: Emma and Eddie Cullen and Niamh Denton. Left: Annette Moroney, Daisy Harte, Olivia Harte, Eugene Harte and Aine Skelton. Above: Eamonn Ryan, Cathal Kennedy and Tadgh Rooney. Left: Ryan and Fintan Ellard. Above: Georgie Kelly, Sorcha Flynn and Connie Lawlor. Right: Olivia Grennell and Jack O’Neill.
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Glynn 5k charity run in aid of Glynn National School, 3rd March 2024 Left: Connie, John and Aida Leacy. Right: Cllr Garry Laffan, Official Starter, and James Hayden. Below left: Willie and Liam Murphy. Below centre: Caroline Doyle, Hannah Quigley and James Hayden. Below right: Joe Walsh.
Above left: Cllr Garry Laffan, Offical Starter, with Ruth, Aidan, Lucy and Grace Cullen. Above centre: Aoife, Kate and Niamh Carley. Above right: Aidan Laffan and Gus Kelly.

Rapparees Starlights Update

Words and pics by Maria Nolan


Our newly formed mens group The Bellefield Boys Social Initiative is going from strength to strength under the auspices of the Healthy Club programme with the Walk & Talk group meeting every Thursday at 11am.

The men are put through their paces under the watchful eye of our Club President Michael Doyle and after some exertion they retire to the Club Pavilion for some refreshments and a lotta lotta chat.

All are welcome, please feel free to join the group any Thursday morning at the new Bellefield Walking Track.

The group is planning to hold its first outing to Croke Park on May 28th.

And do watch this space and our Facebook Page at Rapparees/Starlights for details of upcoming activities and trips.

This is a Croke Park Initiative aimed at keeping older members active and involved.

As a Healthy Club we are striving to give our members a sense of belonging from cradle to grave, no-one should ever feel isolated at Bellefield GAA, the club will always be there for you.


On Saturday 30th March Martin Fogarty, National Development Hurling Officer, delivered a most worthwhile and entertaining coaching workshop at Bellefield to selectors and mentors working with teams from U-12 to Senior level.

Martin who has won 5 Senior All-Ireland titles as a selector with Kilkenny’s Brian Cody, has a wealth of experience and knowledge of the game of hurling and was delighted to impart some of that knowledge to our Bellefield coaches.

This can only augur well for the development of our games at Rapparees/Starlights going forward.


Our 2024 Easter Camp proved to be a huge success during the school break with over 100 boys and girls between the ages of 613 enjoying the facilities at Bellefield and making the best possible use of the spells of good weather to get out on the field, mix with their peers and learn some of the skills of our national games. What better way to spend the Easter holidays.


Working in conjunction with Scorthy Smiles Comedy Association,

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Maria Nolan, Martin Fogarty and Paudge Courtney.

Rapparees/Starlights are planning to introduce a regular Comedy Night at the Bellefield Complex, beginning on Friday 20th April.

With 7 comedians, one band, one comedy sketch and if that wasn’t enough – a surprise performance will also be thrown into the mix.

Under the Club’s Health & Wellbeing Programme we want to get the message out there that it is good to laugh.

The old phrase ‘laughter is the best medicine’ isn’t far from the truth, a good chuckle in the company of good friends is what this is all about.

And before you say comedy isn’t your thing – give it a shot, we will have music and drama in the mix too so there should be something for everyone.

And besides all of the above – it’s free –now you won’t get a better night out than that.

So come along to Bellefield on Friday 20th April and let’s see if we can tickle your fancy!


All is progressing well with out new €1.2 million development at Bellefield GAA –our two new pitches are looking lush and green despite all the bad weather, our new carpark should be up and running by the end of April, along with our new children’s playground and sensory garden.

So a lot to look forward to over the next two months – feel free to come up and take a look at any time, our new facilities are for the entire community not just members of Rapparees/Starlights.

And don’t forget our weekly Lotto and Bingo on Monday and Wednesday nights at the Clubhouse. Bellefield at the heart of the Enniscorthy community. n

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Above and below: Easter Camps at Bellefield.

Women in Sport Week

Women in Sport Week was held from 4th to 10th March. The aims of this week include celebrating every woman and girl who plays, coaches, officiates, volunteers, works in and leads out on Women in Sport; and highlighting some of the programmes/initiatives funded by Sport Ireland Women in Sport Programme.

National Governing Bodies and Local Sports Partnerships across the country organised numerous events. Locally, Sports Active Wexford, the LSP in Wexford, held an array of events to celebrate this wonderful week including archery taster session in New Ross, social soccer in Courtown, teenage girls walking rugby in Enniscorthy and mindfulness walk and yoga in the Raven, Curracloe. There was also a number of inclusive events from multi-sport day in St. Joseph’s, Wexford, inclusive archery in Davidstown, walk on the South East Greenway and inclusive orienteering. Sports Active Wexford was delighted to see so many girls and women getting active.

One of the highlights of the week was when Ireland AM came to the ‘Fit over 50’ women’s programme in Wexford and broadcast live from the Quay front. Deric O’hArtagáin, the weatherman, had great fun and craic with all the ladies who, we have to say, all looked great on the telly! n

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Willie French is new chairman of Wexford Historical Society

Willie French, retired farmer and former national IFA leader from Loughgerald, Enniscorthy, was elected chairman of the prestigious 200-member Wexford Historical Society last month adding the office to that of his chairmanship of the Johnstown Castle based Irish Agricultural Museum, announced earlier this year.

He succeeds Pat Hackett of Wexford town, retired secondary school teacher and author, who was elected secretary.

Jarlath Glynn, former manager of Enniscorthy Library and more recently the retired manager of Wexford town library, and also an author, is the new president of the society. Brian Matthews of Kilmore is the new vice president.

Willie French and the society’s committee are to later announce a schedule of activities including lectures and tours and a ceremony to commemorate the founding of the society 80 years ago.

The late Dr George Hadden, medical pioneer in China, Siberia and Africa, founded the Old Wexford Historical Society, renamed the Wexford Historical Society, on his return to his native Wexford in 1944. He was born at Richmond Terrace in Wexford town in 1882 and died in 1973.

At the annual general meeting held in Whites Hotel, Carmel Foley was elected treasurer, Lorraine Hynes was elected membership secretary, John McCormack is web-master.

The new committee of the society comprises Jimmy Taylor, Dr Paddy McKiernan, Brendan Culliton, Patricia Byrne, Rosemary Hartigan, Myriam Duggan and Maura Bell.

The amazing story of Pierce’s Foundry will be told by Mylo Miller of Johnstown Castle, in a lecture to be presented by him at Whites Hotel, Wexford town, on Wednesday 24 April 2024 at 8.00pm. – M.F.

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Below left: Dr George Hadden. Below right: Jarlath Glynn (on right), president of the Wexford Historical Society, with Professor Diarmuid Ferriter, historian, author, and newspaper columnist. Willie French, new chairman of Wexford Historical Society.

Easter Commemorations in Oulart

Words & Pics by Maria Nolan

The sun shone brightly on Easter Sunday morn as Oulart welcomed guest speaker, the iconic historian, journalist, and writer Tim Pat Coogan to give the annual Mise Eire Address in memory of all the 1916 Volunteers from the proud parish.

Tim Pat spoke eloquently and elaborately about his involvement in the Peace Process, in particular how he brought American Ambassador, the late Jean Kennedy Smyth, and Fr. Alex Reid together and how this coming together

was monumentally instrumental in the overall development of the Good Friday Agreement.

Throughout his address, the entertaining orator spoke only from memory, without paper or prompts and imparted delightful nuggets of information, not documented, making everything very real and memorable for the listener, like his walk around Killiney with the late Senator Ted Kennedy each enjoying slugs


all the major issues and components of the Peace Process.

It was both an honour and a pleasure to meet this most endearing, charming, and compelling man who made time for conversation and photographs with everyone after the formalities.

Well done to the Oulart committee, especially Brian Cleary and Bernie Mythen, for organising the poignant event, including the signing of the Visitors’ Book and the cuppa afterwards at the beautiful House of Stories. n

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of Bean Bourbon and Paddy Whiskey from bottles in their pockets as they discussed Guest speaker Tim Pat Coogan, 5th from left, pictured above and below with some locals.

Enniscor thy honours its dead

Words & Pics by Maria Nolan

Enniscorthy held its annual 1916 Commemoration on Easter Monday to celebrate the town’s unique history, being the last place to surrender arms in the Rising.

Mass was celebrated in the Cathedral at

10am with prayers from Chairman of Enniscorthy Municipal District Council John O’Rourke, Keith Doyle, and Martin Casey.

Bridget O’Brien recited I See His Blood Upon the Rose by Joseph Mary Plunkett,

and Niall Wall gave a beautiful rendition of Boolavogue.

Gifts were brought to the altar by members of Martina Leacy’s Dance Academy, who danced their way up the aisle

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Above: Cllr John O’Rourke, Cathaoirleach, Enniscorthy Municipal District, with his niece. Below: Maria Nolan with European election candidate Cynthia Ní Mhurchú and Minister James Browne TD.

followed by the Army Colour Party and the lowering of the Standards at the Consecration.

Following Mass there was a Procession to Market Square led by the Ballindaggin Pipe Band and including Army Colour Party, UN Veterans, Enniscorthy Re-enactors, public representatives, Cynthia Ní Mhurchú who is running in the European Elections, and relatives of the Enniscorthy 1916 Volunteers.

The formalities at Market Square were presided over by Town Manager Claire Lawless, calling on Chairman John O`Rourke who gave a brief outline of activities leading up to and including Easter Week in Enniscorthy, after which he laid a wreath at the 1798 Monument accompanied by his niece.

Judy Heffernan read the Proclamation, Anthony Nolan played the Last Post and the ceremony ended with Amhran na bFhiann played by the Ballindaggin Pipe Band. n

Easter Commemorations in Enniscorthy –more photos on pages 24-25.

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Market Square, Enniscorthy, Easter Monday 2024.

Vinegar Hill, Enniscorthy, 7th March 2024.

Enniscorthy Municipal District hosted a Ceremonial Event to commemorate the 176th anniversary of the first day the Tricolour was flown publicly on 7th March, 1848, in Waterford by Thomas Francis Meagher and also carried in a parade on Vinegar Hill, Enniscorthy. n

Vinegar Hill Flag Ceremony

7th March 2024

Elected members and staff of Enniscorthy Municipal District, TDs Johnny Mythen and Paul Kehoe, historian Brian Ó Cléirigh, defence forces representatives, and members of Enniscorthy Historical Re-enactment Society at the Ceremonial Event on Vinegar Hill.
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PAT’S PICTURE PARADE OUT AND ABOUT WITH PHOTOGRAPHER PAT O’CONNOR 087-2870006 10th April 2024 - Page 143 Slaney hiStory & heritage

Enniscorthy Victorian house takes centre stage


Paul Roche's family home when he was growing up, Mayfield House in Enniscorthy, had sadly fallen into disrepair after his mother’s death. So when it came up for auction a couple of years ago, Paul and his schoolteacher wife Helena were successful in bidding for it.

With this statement Victorian Big House back in the family, Paul and Helena set out on the mammoth task of restoring it themselves. And along the way found a unique secret oratory that has been hidden in the house for decades.

With dry rot, a leaking roof, rotten beams, and with a tight budget of €150,000 to spend on renovations, this 450 square metre house was a David and Goliath tale of man versus house. Could Paul and Helena save Paul’s old childhood home, his beloved mother’s pride and joy, from rot and ruin? The answer is a resounding ‘Yes’!

Paul has managed to restore many aspects of the building himself without any outside help, keeping it as close as possible to its original condition, and successfully maintaining the spirit of his childhood home.

Each of the completed rooms has been decorated with vibrant colours, antique furniture and maintaining the original fireplaces. The entire kitchen was purchased second-hand online and they painted it a beautiful bright blue. Blue was also the colour chosen for the master bedroom with its four-poster

bed. The unique oratory, discovered during the renovation work, has also had its heritage and history respected, complete with Church pews and Stations of the Cross.

Eighteen months into the project, a lot more work remains to be completed, but to have got to the stage they’re at, with a quarter of the original €150,000 budget still intact, is little short of miraculous.

If you havent seen the programme as yet, make sure to catch it on: n

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Owners Paul and Helena with programme presenter Hugh Wallace. Mayfield House

Enniscorthy Regional Water Supply Scheme

Uisce Éireann has commenced a €19m upgrade to the Enniscorthy Regional Water Supply Scheme

Uisce Éireann has commenced work on site on a €19 million upgrade to the Enniscorthy Regional Water Supply Scheme. The project, which is being carried out in partnership with Wexford County Council, will benefit over 11,000 consumers, ensuring a reliable and sustainable water supply for Enniscorthy and surrounding areas, and enabling future growth and development in the area.

Critical improvements to the scheme will include upgrading the Vinegar Hill Water Treatment Plant, replacing the raw water intake facility at Clonhaston and constructing a new pumping station. 2km of water mains will also be re-routed to facilitate the transfer of water from the River Slaney to the Vinegar Hill plant.

Commenting on the importance of the project for the community, Diane Carroll, Portfolio Manager at Uisce Éireann, said: ‘We’re delighted to begin construction of this critical project for the people of Enniscorthy. It will address water quality and supply issues arising from deficiencies in the existing water infrastructure which have had a significant impact on the local community. The new and improved scheme will ensure a reliable and sustainable water supply, while the increased capacity will support future growth and development of the town.’

The project is being delivered by David Walsh Civil Engineering Ltd. on behalf of Uisce Éireann and is due for completion in late 2025. Traffic management will be required at different stages throughout the construction phase of this project and impacted stakeholders will be notified directly. Uisce Éireann says it will endeavour to keep the local community and stakeholders updated as this project progresses.

For more information about these works, please visit: n

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Improved security of supply Improved drinking water quality Support growth and development Vinegar Hill Water Treatment Plant Replacement intake at Clonhaston

Climate Action Plan launched

Wexford County Council recently published the local authority’s Climate Action Plan 2024-2029. The plan was adopted by the Elected Members at the Wexford County Council Meeting on the 12th of February 2024.

All local authorities in Ireland were tasked by the Minister for Environment, Climate and Communications to publish a plan that laid out the specific actions they would be taking to assist their county in meeting their climate objectives.

The actions laid out in this document are the foundation of Wexford County Council’s climate action for the next five years. There are 133 actions listed within the plan across the five action areas of:

Governance & Leadership

Built Environment & Transport

Natural Environment& Green Infrastructure

Communities, Resilience & Transition

Sustainability & Resource Management

The plan sets out Wexford County Council’s responsibility for enhancing climate resilience, increasing energy efficiency, and reducing greenhouse gas emissions, across their assets, services and infrastructure, while also taking on a broader leadership role in influencing and facilitating others to meet their own targets, within the county.

A significant aspect of the plan is the establishment of Enniscorthy Urban Area as Wexford County Council’s first ‘decarbonisation zone’ which will act as a key pilot zone and testbed for climate change mitigation, adaptation and biodiversity

measures, as well as community-led climate action projects. Carolyne Godkin, Director of Services Housing, Community, Libraries & Arts, Environment & Climate Change, Emergency Management, says: “This plan incorporates actions that will aid both Wexford County Council and the people of County Wexford to contribute to reducing our Greenhouse Gas Emissions (GHG) by the required 51% by 2030.”

Cllr Mary Farrell, Chair of the Climate Change, Biodiversity & Environment Strategic Policy Committee: “This Climate Action Plan will allow County Wexford to transition to a climate resilient, biodiversity rich, environmentally sustainable and climate neutral economy.”

Cllr John Fleming, Cathaoirleach, Wexford County Council, says, “Wexford County Council will deliver climate action across all council services and functions and is well placed to influence and facilitate climate action at local level through individuals, communities and businesses.”

The published Wexford County Council Climate Action Plan 2024-2029 is available on the Council website. Hardcopies of the plan are available to view in County Hall and in the five Municipal District Offices.

All the environmental reports associated with the Climate Action Plan are also available on the Wexford County Council website: n

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Wexford Co. Council officials and elected members looking forward to implementing the plan.

Plans to Futureproof Wexford for a Sustainable Energy Future

A highly engaging public event took place last month in the Riverbank House Hotel in Wexford Town with EirGrid, Wexford County Council, ESB Networks and SEAI as part of the EirGrid Energy Citizens Roadshow. Areas of particular interest were the future proofing of the electricity grid in Wexford and the newly launched Climate Action Plan by Wexford County Council. L-R: Frank Burke, Wexford County Council, Kevin Dolan, EirGrid, Sinead Dooley, EirGrid, Alan Keegan, ESB Networks and MC Ciáran Mullooly.

Locals in Wexford attended the EirGrid Energy Citizens Roadshow in Wexford Town to hear about the future of the electricity grid and details of 2024 – 2029 Climate Action Plan from Wexford County Council.

Joining EirGrid, the operator and developer of Ireland’s electricity grid, at their Energy Citizens Roadshow in the Riverbank House in Wexford town recently, Wexford County Council gave locals an outline of its newly launched Climate Action Plan and ambition for achieving the county's sustainable future.

Speaking about their newly launched Climate Action Plan, Frank Burke, Climate Action Coordinator at Wexford County Council, said, “A key aspect of this plan is to highlight that everyone has to play their part to ensure we leave the world in a better place for the next generation.”

“The plan incorporates actions that will aid both Wexford County Council and the people of Wexford County to contribute to reducing our Greenhouse Gas Emissions to the required 51% by 2030

and will allow County Wexford to transition to a climate resilient, biodiversity rich, environmentally sustainable and climate neutral economy.”

Among the 133 actions detailed in the plan, some of the projects highlighted were the development of a biogas heating system for Wexford Fire Station and a public lighting retrofit programme.

The event also heard from Kevin Dolan, Head of Customers and Connections at EirGrid, who outlined the growing need for renewable energy, with the grid needing to carry triple the amount of renewable energy by 2030.

Alan Keegan from ESB Networks discussed smart metering, micro and mini generation, such as solar panels on roofs of homes and taking control of energy use outside peak hours.

Providing an insightful presentation on the benefits of home energy upgrades and the energy transition, Yvonne Byrne, Wexford Sustainable Energy Communities Mentor with SEAI, provided information about what grants are available to people, communities and

small businesses seeking to cut energy costs.

The audience heard there are currently over 30 sustainable energy communities across Wexford, working together to create sustainable energy systems.

Presentations were followed by a robust questions and answers session, facilitated by MC Ciáran Mullooly, covering an array of topics, including grid upgrades for Wexford County, local public transport, and changes to payment policies for micro and small-scale electricity generators.

Speaking following the event, Head of Public Engagement with EirGrid, Sinead Dooley, said: “At EirGrid, we want to engage with people, listen to them and get their feedback, while providing an opportunity to access timely and relevant information regarding energy and the future of the Electricity grid. The attendance and the level of engagement from communities across Wexford showed that people want to be part of a cleaner energy future in a way that can also benefit them. We thank all those who attended, including all the local expert exhibitors.” n

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Funding for Wexford’s built heritage

€9m in funding for 676 built heritage projects across the country has just been announced with Minister James Browne TD confirming €233k funding for 15 County Wexford protected structures.

Welcoming the funding, Minister Browne outlined how the Built Heritage Investment Scheme and Historic Structures fund supports “County Wexford projects involving repair and renovation works to protect the character of our county’s protected structures. The largest grant of €50,000 will be made available to erect a temporary steel sheeted structure over Mayglass Farmstead. These works are important to preserving this vernacular farmstead, which is believed to be over 300 years old.

“Five County Wexford thatched properties will benefit from grants towards rethatching, including St. Mogue’s, the restored historical cottage located in the historic village of Ferns.

“Among the grant recipients, Woodville House and Gardens in New Ross will receive a grant of €15,000 towards Roofs and Rainwater Disposal. Both the Friends’ Meeting House in Enniscorthy and the Wexford Friary will benefit from grants related to interior improvements while St. Mary’s Church in Bunclody will receive a €15,000 grant to improve its windows and doors. I’m delighted to confirm the approval of these projects, which will make a difference to the condition of 15 protected structures in County Wexford.”


The BHIS provides grants of up to €15,000 for maintenance and smaller conservation works to help prevent historic buildings from falling into disrepair and possible disuse. In recognition of the particular challenges in caring for thatched properties, the scheme also includes ring-fenced funding for historic thatched buildings, with a maximum grant of €20,000.

St. Mary's Church, Bunclody Newtownbarry, Y21 N120, Windows, Doors and Associated Elements, €15,000.00.

Wexford Friary Church

The Friary, Wexford Town, Y35 W727, Interior €10,725.75.

Carrigbyrne House

Adamstown, Enniscorthy, Y21 D925, External Walls, €15,000.00.

Cromogue House

Bunclody, Co.Wexford, Y21 H328, Roofs €10,674.25.

St. Mary's

Summerhill, Wexford Town, Y35 X681, Rainwater Disposal, €15,000.00.

Garden House

Arcandrisk, Barntown, Co. Wexford, Y35 P409, Windows, Doors and Associated Elements, €15,000.00.

Weston House

West Gate, Wexford, Y35 TH7W, Other Works, €15,000.00.

Woodville House

Mountelliott, New Ross, Co. Wexford, Y34 WP93, Roofs & Rainwater Disposal, €15,000.00.

Friends' Meeting House

Spring Valley, Templeshannon, Enniscorthy, Co. Wexford, Y21 X5D9, Interiors €15,000.00.

Yoletown Cottage

Yoletown, Broadway, Co. Wexford, Y35 CH73, Thatch & Other Works, €15,000.00.

Parles Forge

Churchtown, Carne, Broadway, Co. Wexford, Y35 Y2H0, Thatch, €15,000.00.

The Cottage Cullenstown, Duncormick, Co. Wexford, Y35 RK75, Thatch, €2,250.00.

St. Mogue's Church

Ferns, Enniscorthy, Co. Wexford, Y21 V8N5, Thatch, €15,000.00.


Crossabeg, Co. Wexford, Y35 E9X6, Thatch & Other Works, €9,153.00.


Mayglass Farmstead

Temporary steel sheeted structure to be erected over the entire building. This will protect the structure while the internal structural damage is fully assessed, stabilised through propping, and remedial measures are elaborated. This would facilitate re-thatching when the interior has been repaired. €50,000. n

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Wexford Friary Church to receive over €10,000.

Making Enniscorthy cleaner and greener

National Spring Clean, Easter Monday, 1st April 2024:

Sustainable Enniscorthy joined with Enniscorthy Tidy Towns for a National Spring Clean in Enniscorthy on Easter Monday, 1 April, from 10am to 12 noon.

The Spring Clean commenced in the following locations:

 Service Station, Gimont Avenue.

 Abbey Square Car Park (Promenade).

 Fair Green Car Park (Tour de France statue).

 Service Station, Quarry Park (Blackstoops).

Bags, gloves and hi vis vests were provided to over 30 volunteers including members of the Ukrainian community here in Enniscorthy. And over 250 cans, 180 plastic bottles and countless vapes were collected and recycled

An Taisce National Spring Clean is Ireland’s most popular, successful anti-litter initiative. Taking place during the month of April, the campaign encourages everyone to take part and take responsibility for litter, by carrying out clean-ups in their own local area.

Anyone can register for National Spring Clean – yourself, your family, your hous-

ing estate or sports group, club, parish or whatever community you are involved in. Or contact Enniscorthy Tidy Towns and join in their weekly litter picks. Enniscorthy Tidy Towns group is all about making Enniscorthy cleaner and greener!

But the group, wonderful and all as they are, can't do this alone, they need buy-in from the general public and most importantly they need more volunteers.

To help grow their volunteer base, the group have prepared a survey with six very short questions to try and understand what influences people to volunteer and what they can do to make volunteering with them easier!

They would really appreciate if our readers could complete the survey (it is anonymous) and share it to get as many responses as possible. The survey can be accessed here: AIpQLSf7EO0NNdx9tPNgxliYJm_pH2 OOqlAeiokH4aG_StBAimbwg/viewform n

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Above and below: Volunteers helping out at the National Spring Clean event in Enniscorthy on 1st April 2024.

Two Co. Wexford groups benefit from community biodiversity grants

Wexford TD and Minister of State for Law Reform James Browne has confirmed that two County Wexford community groups will benefit from grants to promote further exploration into biodiversity in their locality.

Caim Community Development Group will receive €4,000 to support the implementation of Biodiversity Plan Recommendations for Ballyhighland Woods. Meanwhile, Enniscorthy Tidy Towns Association will carry out a Slaney Countryside Walk ecological survey using a grant worth €4,500.

Welcoming the funding, Minister Browne commended “both community groups for lodging strong applications focussed on using the knowledge of ecologists to better understand local biodiversity habitats. Caim Community Development Group will use the funding to install pine martin den boxes, purchase and use recording equipment, and arrange guided walks with ecologists and foresters. Meanwhile an ecological survey will be carried out on the River Slaney’s Countryside Walk using the grant approved for Enniscorthy Tidy Towns Association.”

Enniscorthy Tidy Towns will work with experts, the local community, and Wexford County Council, to implement actions which not only respond to the

biodiversity emergency – but will also provide a new natural resource for people of all ages.

With the new support, Enniscorthy Tidy Towns aims to prepare a plan to improve biodiversity of the Slaney Country Walk at the end of the Promenade. It is hoped a number of actions will be developed from the plan which can be primarily implemented on this valuable walkway but also at other areas of the town with potential.

The project is being supported by a unique partnership between government and philanthropy with funding being provided to communities across the country from donors to Community Foundation Ireland as well as the National Parks and Wildlife Service. Over the past three years more than 200 communities have been supported to take action.

Welcoming the announcement, Jonathon Hughes (pictured third from left in front row of above photo), Chairperson Enniscorthy Tidy Towns, said: “We are absolutely thrilled to receive this grant funding. Our aim is to make Enniscorthy

a ‘greener’ town and this project will help us along this journey. For too long, nature, biodiversity, and wildlife have not received the protection, improvement and conservation they deserve. This will allow us to prepare and implement a plan to improve biodiversity to the benefit of all. We have already reached out to a well-known and experienced ecologist to collaborate with us on this project. Please keep an eye on our social media to stay up to date as the project progresses."

Jonathon continued, "Enniscorthy has many valuable and nationally important habitats thanks to the River Slaney SAC (Special Area of Conservation). We want to improve nature, biodiversity and wildlife in and around our town for the benefit of our environment and people. Many thanks to Community Foundation Ireland for this opportunity."

If anyone is interested in getting involved in any nature, biodiversity and wildlife projects and improvements in or around Enniscorthy, please contact Enniscorthy Tidy Towns at 053 923 6518 or email: n

Slaney ad Slaney newS Page 150 - 10th April 2024
Slaney enVironment
Enniscorthy Tidy Towns represenetd by Billy Murphy and Jonathon Hughes (centre front row), runners-up in the 2023 Wexfortd Co. Council Keep Wexford Beautiful ‘Best Community Biodiversity Project’.

Clonroche Amenity Park planted as part of The 100 Million Tree Project

On 5th April 2024, Clonroche Amenity Park was planted with 2,500 native trees as part of ‘The 100 Million Trees Project’ which is a community-driven initiative to plant 100 million native trees across Ireland.

Councillor John Fleming, Cathaoirleach Wexford County Council, Councillor Michael Sheehan, New Ross Municipal District, members of Clonroche Development Association, members of the local community, Richard Mulcahy and representatives from Forestry Services, were in attendance on the day.

Cathaoirleach of Wexford County Council Cllr John Fleming welcomed all and said it was ‘great to see Clonroche Amenity Park planted with native trees as part of the 100 million trees project.’ He thanked the Clonroche Development Association, Richard Mulcahy, Wexford County Council and Uniphar for making this project happen. He paid a special word of thanks to all in the local commu-

nity for their commitment and dedication in keeping the park and the village of Clonroche looking so well.

Richard Mulcahy said, “We are delighted to partner with Clonroche Development Association and bring the total number of young native trees planted to just over 200,000 across 99 sites.’ He thanked Uniphar for their sponsorship for the 2023 / 2024 planting season and stated that ‘the planting in Clonroche Amenity Park will provide so many benefits to the local community and for biodiversity’.

Background Information

The 100 Million Trees Project is a national initiative developed by brothers Richard and David Mulcahy in 2023 with sister Tina coming on board in 2024. The project aims to see the planting of 100 million native Irish trees across the island of Ireland over the next decade, as a community-driven initiative.

The project’s ambitious aim will be

achieved through densely planting between 500 and 2,500 native Irish trees at a time across small areas of land using ‘the Miyawaki method’. Named after Japanese Botanist, Professor Akira Miyawaki, who developed the technique in the 1970s as a means to restore degraded land, the Miyawaki Method of overplanting trees has been successful in creating over 1,700 forests worldwide.

By planting excess trees together, these grow 10 times faster, 30 times denser, create an area 100 times more biodiverse and most importantly create a very rapid carbon sink. This inexpensive approach requires significantly smaller planting areas and can be carried out on unused or fallow land across Ireland.

For further information on The 100 Million Trees Project, check out the website here: or email the project at n

Front row L-R: Kay Stafford, Jim Redmond (Clonroche Development Association), Tom Furlong (Clonroche Development Association), Richard Mulcahy, Councillor John Fleming (Cathaoirleach Wexford County Council), Councillor Michael Sheehan (New Ross Municipal District), Martin Kelly (Clonroche Development Association), Robert O’ Connor (Forestry Services). Back row L-R: Philip Rossiter, John Fitzpatrick.

Slaney enVironment 10th April 2024 - Page 151

Win €500 for your school!

Would you like to win €500 for your school and the title of Wexford’s Cleanest School 2024?

Simply enter the Wexford Co. Council ‘Snap into Action’ competition in conjunction with Spring Clean Wexford 2024, before the closing date of 17th May 2024.

For further information please see the steps to follow in the accompanying graphic, or go to:

Please share this information with your local primary school and help Wexford Co. Council in its fight against litter. n

2GOCUPS now available at Eco-Kind

Globally, we use 500 billion single-use cups every year, and in Ireland alone we use over 200 million! Although disposable cups are marketed as “recyclable” and “compostable”, only 1 in 400 cups are properly disposed of, meaning more than 99% of disposable cups end up in landfills or incineration.

Did you know that whilst 7/10 people own a reusable cup, it is estimated that only 1/10 people actually use them! That’s where the 2GOCUPS deposit and return scheme comes in, providing all the convenience of a takeaway cup.

Now available at the wonderful Eco-Kind zero waste and coffee shop, Duffry Hill, Enniscorthy.

Find out more about 2GOCUPS on: n

Slaney ad Slaney enVironment Page 152 - 10th April 2024

Monart planting 2,500 native trees

On 6th March, during National Tree Week, the planting of 2,500 native Irish trees commenced at Monart Destination Spa, part of the Griffin Hotel Group which has invested €1m in its Sustainability Programme over the last 12 months.

Monart Destination Spa is delighted to have teamed up with the 100 Million Trees project in Ireland. This is phase one of the project that will see the Griffin Group drive better biodiversity by using the well-known Miyawaki method.

This method has proven that by planting excess trees together these grow 10 times faster, 30 times denser, create an area 100 times more biodiverse and most importantly create a very rapid carbon sink.

Monart will create a carbon sink of 34 tons per annum with this initiative, all the while creating a new space for their guests to enjoy while relaxing at the world-renowned destination spa.

The Griffin Group will add to this initiative over the coming months and years increasing the variety of trees at Monart thereby improving local biodiversity. This plays a major role in the group’s strategy of becoming carbon neutral and reducing biodiversity loss.

Since 2014, the Griffin Hotel Group has been rolling out a longterm strategic sustainability plan. This planting and the following planting phases will result in a carbon sink of approximately 136 tonnes per annum which will help the company achieve carbon neutrality and increase biodiversity. The company is steadily rolling out its carbon reduction roadmap across the key energy, water, waste, and transport areas.

CEO of the Griffin Hotel Group Michael Griffin says, “It is wonderful to be here and see the planting of these special Irish tree species and we are delighted to be part of such a great initiative. Monart has many species of trees which were brought in from all over the world during the 18th century, so it is reassuring that we are bringing back the Irish woods which in a way

A welcome development at Kilcannon Garden Centre & Restaurant

Kilcannon Garden Centre & Restaurant is delighted to announce that it now has e-car charging stations available at its premises on the Old Dublin Road, Enniscorthy. So whether you're shopping for plants or enjoying a meal at the restaurant, you can now charge your electric vehicle while you're there.

Simply plug in and power up. It's Kilcannon’s way of making your visit even more convenient and sustainable, and a step towards a greener future! n

6th March 2024, during National Tree Week, 2,500 native Irish trees have started to be planted at Monart Destination Spa as part of the Griffin Hotel Group’s €1million sustainability programme. At the planting were Richard Mulcahy (100 Million Trees Founder), Mark Browne (General Manager Monart Destination Spa), Michael Griffin (CEO Griffin Hotel Group), Liam Anthony Griffin (Director Griffin Hotel Group), Igors Prokopenko (Head Grounds Keeper Monart Destination Spa).

gives us renewed woodlands as many of our magnificent older trees are struggling with age. We would like to thank the 100 Million Trees project team for all their assistance, it was a pleasure working with them. We look forward to seeing these magnificent trees develop and mature in the coming years giving our guests a new area in which to immerse themselves in nature.”

For more information on the project and the Griffin Hotel Group’s sustainability measures see n

Slaney enVironment 10th April 2024 - Page 153

2024 Climate Heroes Community Challenge

Climate Heroes is a team-based, online, fun community challenge organised by Global Action Plan which runs from 15 to 26 April 2024. The challenge involves logging climate actions on a web app and competing with other community groups. The pre-set climate actions are organised into themes – Goods & Services, Food, Energy, Transport & Habits. The team with the lowest Carbon Dioxide Equivalent (CO2E) wins and there are awards for the top three community groups.

Sustainable Enniscorthy has registered a team to take part in the challenge. Anyone interested in getting involved is welcome to join the Sustainable Enniscorthy team. Or you can register your own team at

Once you register online, Global Action Plan will email you all the information you need to get started – recruiting your team, getting them on board, and logging actions.

Global Action Plan is hosting Climate Heroes Webinars in the run-up to the competition to look at the big picture of the competition themes (energy, transport, food, consumption) and to highlight positive examples from other groups across the country.

Webinars are being held on the following Wednesdays at 7pm.

3 April 7pm - Sustainable Food Systems.

10 April 7pm - Sustainable Energy.

Recordings are available of past webinars:

20 March 7pm - Exploring Responsible Consumption (Goods & Services theme).

27 March 7pm - Sustainable Transport (Transport & Habits theme).

Register for webinars via Eventbrite at

Any questions?


Visit Climate Heroes Support at

Phone 01-8832185 between 9am and 5pm.

More details at

Join Sustainable Enniscorthy email: n

500 native saplings distributed to celebrate National Tree Week

On 8th March 2024, Cathaoirleach of Wexford Co. Council John Fleming planted an oak tree with members of Clonroche Development Association to celebrate National Tree Week.

National Tree Week is an annual event organised by the Tree Council of Ireland in partnership with Coillte. It is the largest tree celebration in the country, providing a unique opportunity for people to come together and celebrate the beauty and importance of Ireland's trees. This year’s theme was “Planting Trees for a Greener Future” highlighting the importance of planting more trees as a crucial component of addressing biodiversity challenges and fighting climate change.

To celebrate National Tree Week, Wexford County Council in conjunction with the Tree Council of Ireland and Coillte distributed 500 native saplings to schools and community groups across County Wexford. Wexford County Coun-

L-R: Cliona Connolly (Wexford County Council), Tom Furlong (Clonroche Development Association), Cllr. John Fleming (Cathaoirleach Wexford County Council), Martin Kelly (Clonroche Development Association), Cllr. John O’Rourke (Cathaoirleach Enniscorthy Municipal District), Diarmuid O’Sullivan (Clonroche Development Association).

cil also promotes and supports local communities with the ‘Trees for Wexford Scheme’ which saw 8,957 trees, saplings,

and hedging distributed to voluntary community groups and schools in February 2024. n

Slaney ad Slaney enVironment Page 154 - 10th April 2024

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