Let the premier games begin

IT hasn’t been a long hot summer, but summer nonetheless. And now that it’s over and the evenings are closing in it’s time for the soccer bof- fins around the county to come out of deCoJDupeDloloomercIN(O)EE

Suitably sated by the action from the European Championships and Olympic Games, in which Spain and Argentina prevailed, the big kick-off to the Clare League Premier Divi- sion is penciled in for this Sunday, weather permitting of course.

Newmarket Celtic are defending the title they won last year from their closest challengers Avenue United and Lifford. The new teams on the Premier block for this season are Corofin Harps, the Clare Cup cham- pions in 2005 and 2006, and Bridge United who were Premier champions in 2006 before being relegated the following season.

Newmarket have a difficult opening tie this weekend when they travel to the Micho Russell Centre in Doolin to take on Burren United — the north Clare side are in their second season in the top flight having consolidated their position in their debut year last year under manager Donie Garrihy.

The north Clare flag is also being flown by Moher Celtic, the unlucki- est team over the past number of sea- sons having come desperately close to winning both the Premier title and the Cup.

Like every year Avenue United will be one of the teams to beat — win- ning tradition alone built up over 25 years means that they won’t be

far away, while Lifford have been the other standardbearers from the county capital over the past number of years.

Bunratty will be hoping to build on their cup run last year that only ended in defeat to Rock Rovers, while Bridge Celtic who were cham- pions in 2005/06 will aim to put their poor 2006/07 campaign behind

them. Then there’s Rineanna Rov- ers, cup semi-finalists last year who are a match for any team on their day — especially on their home turf on the back road from Newmarket to SJar-vepeeyee


Roseingrave is Clare’s captain fantastic

AT only eighteen, Clare minor cap- tain Carina Roseingrave already has a sizeable list of honours and achievements that most veterans of the game would severely envy. Mun- ster inter-county Intermediate and Minor, County and Munster senior club, county and provincial schools titles as well as underage club med- als of every grade.

If that wasn’t enough, there is even a Munster schools soccer and a ladies

football schools county title thrown in for good measure.

Still, for a player of such undoubt- ed talent, an All-Ireland medal still eludes her and the fact that this is her last opportunity to win a medal at this grade, Roseingrave is doubly determined to add it to the list.

“It would mean the world to me, ab- solutely everything to get an All-Ire- land medal with this group of girls, who are all great friends.

“A Munster medal is a fair acheive- ment but if we could go one step fur-

ther and do what no other team in the county has done before, it would be brilliant.

‘I’m very proud to be captain of Clare’s first minor All-Ireland team. It’s a great achievement and now I can’t wait really beacause it’s never happened in Clare that we have been in an All-Ireland final but we are go- ing to give it a go.”

She also has the added experience of playing in last year’s All-Ireland Junior final, a heartbreaking occa- sion for all involved but with another

All-Ireland Junior final appearance to come in the middle of Septem- ber, the future is certainly bright for Clare camogie.

However, Kilkenny are bidding for their third successive title and having played them previously, she realises that Clare are up against it.

“Kilkenny were definitely the side to beat all year. We played them two years ago in an All-Ireland semi-fi- nal and they stopped us in our tracks so they will be very strong and are a very confident side.

“We will have to get at them early and hard and hope for the best. If we can do it, it would be a great boost. I do the summer camps so a lot of kids would be talking about it so if we did bring home the All-Ireland, it would boost the game even further in Clare and more kids would want to play camogie.”

Even for all her stack of medals, winning this one would be her big- gest achievement yet.


Rory takes career into orbit

NASA and the opportunity to work with some of the brightest minds in science beckons for Clare man Rory Murphy.

Rory, who hails from Inch, will take part in a FAS led initiative, which will take him to the National Aero- nautics and Space Administration (NASA), the University of Central Florida and the Florida Institute of Technology, next month. Rory is an electrical craftsman working in Ro- che Ireland and his study programme and work placements will include fi- bre optics, advanced process control, instrumentation as well as alternative energy systems.

Rory has taken advantage of sev- eral opportunities to further his edu- cation, skills and knowledge in the past both in Roche and academic institutes like LIT. He described this latest opportunity as “the chance of a lifetime”.

The overall aim is for the partici- pants to transfer and apply the skills

and knowledge they gain to their future careers. This in turn benefits Ireland’s academic institutions, and future employers, and _ ultimately, enables the country to move up the value chain as a knowledge-based society.

Cyril Treanor, Director of Human Resources at Roche Ireland said the company is delighted to be support- ing Rory. “Our company is very in- terested in opportunities to provide

increased training and development to our employees.” He added, “The programme will provide a valuable opportunity for Rory to realise his potential by developing a deeper un- derstanding of technologies, gaining insights to potential opportunities and enhancing his skills.”

In association with participating companies from all over the country FAS founded the Science Challenge. It comprises two distinct programmes – Up skilling and Internship – en- gages young people learning science and engineering and exposes them to new technologies and research op- portunities.

FAS has also forged partnerships with Space Florida, BioLink USA- Ireland, the National Space Biomed1- cal Research Institute (NSBRI) and a multitude of related companies and academic institutions. The overall aim is for the participants to transfer and apply the skills and knowledge they gain to their future careers.


New radio station SPINs its way to the top

SPIN South West regional radio sta- tion has topped national listnership figures as the most listened to station among 15-34 year olds across Clare.

For the third time running, the of- ficial JNLR figures put SPIN South West number one in the critical “lis- tened yesterday” ratings. The figures show that over the past three months, 112,000 adults listened to the station on a weekly basis and 59,000 on a CPTI MMos IIe

SPIN South West Chief Executive, Clarewoman Aevann Upton said that the figures are tremendous news for everyone who has worked so hard to make the station a success.

‘To have made it to the top of the JNLR listenership charts so soon af- ter launching the station was a huge achievement. We’ve topped that by staying there for the past nine months which clearly shows that we’re keep- ing up the momentum. Our thanks must go to our listeners in Clare for choosing to tune in to SPIN South West and for remaining loyal.

‘“Today’s figures reinforce our be- lief that there is a very significant regional radio market out there,

particularly among 15-34 year olds. They also confirm the quality of our programming which clearly captured the attention of our target audience.

These figures are also important to SPIN South West is the region’s our sponsors and advertisers as they first dedicated youth station and show that we continue to deliver tre- broadcasts on 102-103 FM across mendous value for money.” she said. | Limerick, Kerry and Clare and on

9477 in North Tipperary and South West Laois. Live streaming and a series of podcasts are also available on the station’s website — www.spin-

The regional youth radio station, which employs 43 people, has cap- tured the 15-34 year old audience by delivering a brash and upbeat style of broadcasting. SPIN’s programming consists of urban, dance, rock and pop music, a daily youth oriented current affairs programme called ‘SPIN TALK’ and a heavy focus on sports including GAA, rugby and soccer.

SPIN South West shareholders include former Lions, Ireland and Munster rugby star Keith Wood from Killaloe; Clare Community Radio Holdings; Liam O’Shea, Man- aging Director of Clare FM who is also Chairman of SPIN South West; Setanta Radio Limited; Tralee businessman Jerry Kennelly; John O’Connor, Independent Radio Sales and the Communicorp Group Lim- Krew


Lingerie also suffering from the economic slowdown

THE latest financial results from a Shannon company show that even the sales of women’s lingerie is not immune from the economic down- neheee

US-owned multi-national, Maiden- form describes itself as a producer of women’s ‘intimate apparel’ and re- sults for its Shannon operation show that profits have dropped by over €350,000 in 2007.

Maidenform International Ltd re- corded profits of €2,989,000 last year – down by €352,000 on the €3,341,000 recorded in 2000.

Profits were also hit by the weak- ness of the US dollar with foreign exchange losses increasing from €33,000 in 2006 to €246,000 last year.

Turnover rose from €11.9 million to €12.8 million in 2007 while cost of sales increased from €5.8 million to €6.6 million.

Accumulated profits of €5.4 mil- lion were recorded.

Staff costs of €1.2 million were re- corded for the 33 people employed at the firm’s base on the Shannon Free Zone.

A statement accompanying the ac- counts, states that “both the level of business and year end financial posi- tion were considered satisfactory.

The risk to future business are those inherent to a global intimate apparel company and including cur- rency fluctuations, market volatility and the reliability of product deliv- Clu Loe

“The company is primarily en- gaged in the distribution of intimate

apparel throughout Europe, North Africa and the Middle East.

“The directors expect that the present level of business will be sustained for the foreseeable future and it is their intention to continue to develop the current activities of the oe) anh ey: beh ae

The history of Maidenform began at Enid Frocks, a small dress shop in New York City owned and operated by Enid Bissett.

A Russian seamstress at Enid’s shop, Ida Rosenthal decided with Enid that the fit and appearance of their custom-made dresses would be enhanced if improvements were made to the style bras then in vogue. They called their bras “Maidenform”, in contrast to the “Boyish Form” brand then in vogue.


48 cancellations at general hospital

A TOTAL of 48 procedures were cancelled at Ennis General Hospital between January and June of this year.

There were no recorded cancella- tions at the Mid Western Regional Hospital Limerick during the same six-month period or in St John’s Hos- pital Limerick.

Neighbouring hospital, the Univer- sity College Hospital Galway also had a clear record.

Nenagh General Hospital, a hos- pital in the mid-west that shares a similar history to Ennis and many of the same fears regarding a possible downgrading, had 11 cancellations.

The largest cancellations have been in Cork University Hospital with a staggering 945 cancellations.

The Dublin hospitals also recorded a large number of cancellations with the Mater Hospital badly hit with 756 cancellations.

The figures were released by Fine Gael whose spokesperson has claimed that the 15,000 operations cancelled in 2007 could be exceed- ed.

Deputy Damien English (FG) said, “This worryingly high figure indi- cates that the 2007 figures will be re- peated or even exceeded. Cancelled operations have a real impact on patients, postponing important pro- cedures, prolonging pain and delay- ing investigations which may lead to early detection.”

In the first five months of this year, an average of 256 patients were on trolleys in A and E each day accord- ing to INO figures.


Learning network working for a common goal

CLARE Lifelong Learning Network has created a unique partnership ap- proach that could act as a model not only in the field of further education but wherever two or more groups work together towards a common exer

That was the reaction to the net- work’s award for public service ex- cellence from former Taoiseach Ber- tie Ahern. The Clare network was one of 20 winners from 183 projects put forwards for the awards process.

Clare VEC chief executive George

O’Callaghan described the award as a great honour and reflected great credit on the officials involved in developing the network. They are Aobhan Haverty, head of the Clare adult education service; Ann Knox, community education facilitator and Mike Ryan, Clare co-ordinator of the Back to Education Initiative.

The network, which is sponsored by the County Adult and Commu- nity Education Service, has over 100 members involved in education in the county.

They include the VEC, family re- source centres, community develop-

ment projects, the county council, the county development board, schools, Clare Youth Service Ltd., ADM- funded projects, FAS, ‘Teagasc, Brothers of Charity, Shannon Devel- opment and community groups.

Members are collaborating on improving the quality of adult and community education provision in the county, including joint planning, up-skilling providers and tutors, use of new technologies and provision of progression routes for learners in- cluding provision at third-level.

An essential tool for the network 1s information technology. So the web-

site includes a notice board of upcoming events and a special learners’ forum for adult learners to communicate with each other.

At least nine elearning centres are now operating in rural communi- ties throughout the county, while a central database is used to register learners and track their progression.

Clare’s management information system gives immediate access to up to date information on the learning of 5,000 learners in the county. It is a powertul information management tool that gives managers and policy

makers access to the most immedi- ate information on which to base de- cisions and policies.

The system is replicated nationally and has been taken up by several vocational education committees around the country. It possesses the potential even to facilitate the De- partment of Education in national decision-making based on real time information.

The system also helps promote equality in the sense that programme co-ordinators can immediately see the gaps in provision or in progres- sion.


Laura shows oft her curves

LAURA O’Donovan from Ardnacru- sha is in the running to be selected as Ireland’s most curvaceous woman.

She qualified to represent Clare in the national final of the Simply Be CiiaAmmceyseelcsiseyrmmUueN(Onmm stl mmole held at the Radisson Royal SAS in Dublin on August 31 after she was picked from thousands of applicants in the Limerick heat of the competi- tion

Simply launched their search to find Ireland’s most curvaceous woman ‘Simply Be Curvy’ in April, looking for women size 14 and over who love and celebrate their curves

to enter. After three heats and from the thousands of entries 28 finalists were chosen.

The winner will become an in- stant cover girl, gracing the cover of Simply Spring/Summer 2009 catalogue. She will also win €1,000 worth of clothing and accessories, a holiday to the value of €1,000 plus €500 spending money and a modelling contract with one of Ireland’s top modelling agents.

A panel of celebrity judges includ- ing Caroline Morahan, Celia Hol- man Lee and Brenda O’Donoghue will choose the winner from the 28 finalists. As well as one to one inter- views with the judges, the event will

take the finalists to the catwalk to model Simply autumn/winter range 2008. Each of the girls will be trained by model agent and former model Celia Holman Lee.

Ireland’s only dedicated on-line home shopping company for curvy women, Simply was estab- lished to keep women looking stun- ning with no fuss – no communal changing rooms or unflattering lights and mirrors, just the comfort of their very own home.


Mayors cross the pond for Irish festival

THE Mayor of Clare met with the Mayor of Chicago last Tuesday in a bid to strengthen business and tour- ism links between Clare and the US mid-west.

Councillor Madeleine Taylor- Quinn’s meeting with Mayor Rich- ard M Daley in Chicago’s City Hall formed part of a week-long promo- tional trip by Clare County Council to Illinois and Wisconsin.

The council delegation attended the Milwaukee Irish Fest, the world’s largest Irish culture festival, where it

conducted a promotional campaign aimed at highlighting Clare as a tourist destination.

Mayor Taylor-Quinn described her meeting with Mayor Daly, a third- generation Irish American, as ‘pro- ductive’ and added that she was con- fident it would reap benefits for the local economy.

“We agreed that the retention and development of existing air services between Chicago O’Hare Airport and Shannon was a priority for the economies of the regions served by the two airports,” she said.

“T explained how it was imperative

that assurances were sought from airlines operating out of Shannon, especially Aer Lingus, that existing services will be maintained into the GULAbD aoe

“If they are curtailed then I fear that Clare’s economy will suffer immensely with the potential loss of millions of euro and hundreds of jobs,’ continued Mayor ‘Taylor- Quinn.

Both Mayors also discussed the lat- est tourism figures showing that the number of American tourists to Ire- land has fallen dramatically — lead- ing to the first drop in tourist revenue

in four years.

The meeting concluded with Mayor Daley being invited to visit Clare in the near future.

Clare County Manager, Alec Flem- ing said he was delighted Mayor Daley had accepted the council’s invitation to meet with Mayor Tay- lor-Quinn, as part of the delegation’s promotional efforts.

“The meeting was a wonderful op- portunity for the council to showcase Clare’s economic and tourism poten- tial and follows a successful tourism promotional campaign undertaken by the delegation at the Milwaukee

Irish Fest.’

“It is anticipated that work car- ried out by the Clare delegation at this year’s festival will help build on the estimated 3,000 US tourists who holidayed in the west of Ireland as a result of our promotional campaign in Wisconsin last year,’ concluded Mr Fleming.

Over 140,000 people attend the Milwaukee Irish Fest, which show- cased Irish music, history, dance, sports and various other aspects of the Irish culture. Among the featured acts at the festival were the Kilfenora Céili Band.


Development plans face opposition from council

CLARE County Council has already refused planning permission to one park and ride scheme for the Cliffs of Moher and opposition is mounting against two others planned for the north Clare area.

Last week, the council turned down planning permission to At- lantis Development for a park and ride at Roadford, Doolin. This was the third application from the north

Clare company with the other two proposals for Liscannor and Coogy- ulla, Doolin facing strong local op- position.

Atlantis subsequently withdrew these applications and _ re-lodged them last month.

An objection to the Coogyulla pro- posal signed by 20 local residents, states that Doolin suffers from being so spread out and lacking a strong central focus and the development of a facility so far outside the village

will exacerbate this lack of focus and result in a lost opportunity for the community.

“The development will draw the village further to this location as fur- ther projects locate around the park and ride facility. No justification has been put forward for the selection of this site for the facility. What makes it suitable and what will the impact be on Doolin and its environs?

‘There is no rural park and ride fa- cility of the nature and type that is

now proposed and where it 1s not run by the operator of the tourist facility which it serves.

“Insufficient information has been lodged with the application to enable the full planning implications and impacts of the development to be considered.

“The application should include an EIS given its nature, extent and con- text. The location is being put for- ward without any assessment of its impact on the sustainable develop-

ment of Doolin and its environs.

‘This trial system was never oper- ated and no one knows exactly how it will work. It also appears now that the development of park n ride is not going to be operated by the Council, but is to be left to private enterprise both in Doolin and Liscannor,”’ the objection concludes.

The proposal for Liscannor has also attracted a lot of opposition within the village and decisions are due next month.