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:: News In Brief
Halloween bonfires 'illegal', council warns
DONEGAL County Council is asking householders not to provide
materials for bonfires because the traditional Halloween celebration
"can cause serious damage and injuries both to our environment and
to our health".
Waste awareness officer Suzanne Bogan said: “While traditionally,
wood and straw were used on bonfires in recent times materials such
as tyres, mattresses, furniture, plastics, metal etc., are burned on
bonfires. This type of activity is illegal. It is also an offence to
supply waste materials to parties collecting for ‘Bonfire Night’."
She added: "The burning of waste such as rubber, aerosols, plastics,
foam, mattresses, couches and household waste material in bonfires
is very damaging to our health and environment. When waste materials
are burned on a bonfire harmful dioxins are created and released
into the air that we breathe."
Burglars let themselves in your front door
GARDAÍ are urging people to "close the door on burglars" as
latest figures show that nearly one in every three burglaries
involve a break-in through the front door. New data from the Garda
Analysis Service shows that front doors are the most common entry
point in 29% of burglaries - with most burglars using their own body
to shove in. Burglars also commonly target back doors (26%), back
windows (24%) and front windows (8%), with one in five cases
involving a burglar getting access through an unsecured door or
window. Jewellery, cash, computers, mobile phones, TVs and games
consoles are among the top items stolen. The statistics show that
nearly half of burglaries occur between 5pm and 11pm.
Late Late Toy Show seeks young performers
THE Late Late Toy Show producers have hit the road in search of
the country’s best young performers to take part in this year's
They revealed they are planning "the most spectacular opening number
in the show’s history". Over the course of the next three days, in a
closed audition process, they’ll meet singers, dancers and musicians
from as young as four-years-old from all across Ireland. Some will
perform alone and others will be part of choirs and groups with as
many as 70 members. Auditions for invitees will take place Cork,
Dundalk and Galway.
Breast cancer survival rates rise to 85% 25.10.16
MORE women are surviving breast cancer due to early detection,
personalised treatment and knowledge about causes and risk factors,
the Irish Cancer Society has revealed. October is Breast Cancer
Awareness month and the society has analysed Irish breast cancer
data over the past 40 years. In 1976, almost half of women diagnosed
with breast cancer died from the disease. Today, survival rates for
breast cancer have increased to 85% over five years, the society
said. People across Ireland are encouraged to get behind the Paint
it Pink campaign to raise vital funds for the continued investment
in breast cancer research, advocacy and services. For information on
hosting a pink coffee morning or event, visit
It's a jungle out there for Daniel 25.10.16
DANIEL O'Donnell's secret codename when he was picked to appear
on Strictly Come Dancing has been revealed...as Tarzan!
The Donegal country crooner (54) was given the jungle-swinging
moniker to keep his identity top-secret before his participation was
revealed to the showbiz world.
Daniel's pseudonym was just one of Disney characters used for last
year's 15 participating celebrities. His Strictly pal Jeremy Vine
was dubbed Nemo.
The covert identities are known only to a handful of people.
The celebrities, themselves, must keep their participation secret
for several agonising months before the hit show airs in September.
This year's celebrity codenames were borrowed from Shakespeare with
Irish hopeful Laura Whitmore revealed as 'Lady Macbeth'.
Taxing times for Graham Norton 25.10.16
GRAHAM Norton has revealed he won't move his millions offshore
because paying tax helps fund free education and healthcare.
The BBC star (53) pays hundreds of thousands in British taxes each
year which go towards the National Health Service (NHS) and
publicly-funded schools. But he says there should be a Revenue
crackdown on the superwealthy who don't pay their fair share.
"If I were (Prime Minister) for the day I'd tackle tax evasion. If
the very rich paid their fair share we'd be in much better shape.
There would be more schools and more hospitals, people wouldn't be
as disaffected and maybe Brexit wouldn't have happened," he said.
Rheumatology clinics restored at Letterkenny
DONEGAL TD., Charlie McConalogue has welcomed the reinstatement
of rheumatology clinics at Letterkenny University Hospital. The HSE
has confirmed that following the removal of services from the
hospital in 2011, the clinic will be reinstated at the end of the
month. Deputy McConalogue this evening said: “I have been raising
this issue with the various ministers for health and the HSE since I
was first elected to the Dáil. In this time, up to 300 Donegal
patients have had to travel to Manorhamilton for rheumatology
services. “After years of discussions, the HSE has now finally given
a firm commitment on the reinstatement of the clinic, which follows
on from the appointment of a third rheumatologist for the North West
region a few weeks ago," add the Fianna Fáil public representative.
US visit is good for Donegal - McHugh
MINISTER for the Diaspora and International Development, Deputy
Joe McHugh, has said that an IDA investment and marketing mission to
the US west coast this week "presents opportunities for job creation
The five-day visit undertaken by IDA officials and the Minister for
Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Mary Mitchell O'Connor, is designed
to encourage a cross section of companies to consider setting up in
Ireland, said Deputy McHugh. “We have a tremendous IDA story in
Letterkenny with globally significant companies like Pramerica,
Medisize, United Health Group, Zeus and SITA located here. It is a
hugely attractive town for foreign direct investment with easy two
hour access to Belfast International Airport, the unique fibre optic
link to North America with Project Kelvin and a highly educated
workforce thanks to Letterkenny IT," he said.
Wild Atlantic visit for American travel agencies
EIGHT American travel agents representing high-end luxury tour
operators are in Ireland to learn more about Fáilte Ireland’s three
major tourism brands: the Wild Atlantic Way; Ireland’s Ancient East;
and Dublin – A Breath of Fresh Air.
The tailored visit has been designed "to promote Ireland to high end
travellers from the US market and is hosted and managed by Fáilte
Ireland in collaboration with Tourism Ireland". Fáilte Ireland head
of international publicity Ciara Sugrue said: “Fáilte Ireland is
delighted with this opportunity to showcase our luxury tourism
offering across our three tourism brands to these visiting US luxury
tour operators, who represent a high end and lucrative segment of
the American market."
Marketing brochure for Killybegs 18.10.16
A new Killybegs Harbour Business brochure which showcases the
fishing village as a "modern, vibrant and forward looking harbour
location" will be launched next week. The brochure outlines the key
facts about "Ireland’s premier sea-port" including its manufacturing
and engineering companies and the more recent facilitation of cruise
ships into its deep water harbour. Local facilities, services and
service providers are also included as is Donegal Airport for its
role as a transport hub. Donegal County Council cathaoirleach Cllr
Terence Slowey said local authority was delighted to deliver the
"marketing tool for Killybegs". It will be launched on Monday,
October 24, 2016 at 7pm in the Bayview Hotel, Killybegs.
Council urges caution over fraudsters 17.10.16
DERRY City and Strabane District Council has advised the public
not to provide their bank details to callers allegedly purporting to
be council officials. The warning comes following suspected fraud
brought to the local authority's attention by Belfast City Council
who received reports of fraudsters requesting bank details from
customers to facilitate the release of a cheque.
Derry lead finance officer Alfie Dallas said he "wanted to err on
the side of caution" by warning the public not to provide their bank
details over the phone to anyone purporting to be from the council.
Derry promised "packed and varied" choral festival
DERRY Mayor, Clllr Hilary McClintock has welcomed more than 60
local, national and international choirs this week for the City of
Derry International Choral Festival. The festival runs from
Wednesday, October 19 until Saturday October 22 beginning with an
Opening Gala Concert in the Guildhall at 7.30pm. “There is a packed
and varied schedule of events on offer over the four days so whether
you’re a choral enthusiast, or simply a lover of music, there is
something to cater for all tastes," she said.
'Haunted Harvest Market' in Derry 17.10.16
A 'Haunted Harvest Market' will run at Guildhall Square and
Waterloo Place, Derry to celebrate Halloween from Friday October 28
– Monday, October 31, 2016. The market will include a "bewitching"
range of food and crafts from local producers and suppliers
including a 'Hell's Kitchen' outlet. The market will operate from 12
noon to 8.30pm on Friday 28 – Sunday 20 and from 12noon – 10pm on
Monday 31. Visitors can also look forward to live music, DJs and
25,000 attend Slow Food Festival 10.10.16
DERRY'S Slow Food Festival attracted more than 25,000 visitors to
the two-day culinary celebration at Guildhall Square at the weekend,
the council said. The event, held in an all-weather marquee,
celebrated “good, clean and fair food” from across the North West.
Rural tourism project officer with Derry City and Strabane District
Council Jennifer O’Donnell said: "We were totally blown away by the
crowds who flocked to the event on both Saturday and Sunday and the
response has been overwhelming across the board. A number of the
producers sold out on the first day and some had even sold out both
days’ produce, such was the demand from the public which speaks
volumes for the quality and range of our local food provenance.” The
Harvest-style market featured charcuterie and fish, jams, chutneys
and preserves as well as cheese, beef and pork. Cookery demos, talks
by local craft brewers and a showcase for local beekeepers also
Seminar to explore technology in public services
DELEGATES from Iceland, Norway, Sweden, Finland and Derry and
Strabane District Council are set to attend a seminar on OpenData in
Letterkenny this week. The seminar, hosted by Donegal County
Council, is part of the EU NPA funded IMPROVE project aimed at
bettering the design of technology-driven public services. “The
OpenData market in Donegal has a wide range of potential users from
tourism and health applications to the design of better public
services. We are hoping to explore these topics and to see how they
can deliver economic, social and democratic benefits in the county,"
said the local authority's head of IT, Brian Boyle.
McConalogue wants Farm Assist restored 10.10.16
FIANNA Fáil TD for Donegal Charlie McConalogue has called on the
Minister for Social Protection Leo Varadkar to reverse the 2012 and
2013 cuts to the Farm Assist scheme in tomorrow's Budget 2017. He
said more than 1,500 Donegal farmers had seen a "huge cut" in their
income over the last four years.
“The cuts to the scheme have had a huge impact on the most
vulnerable farmers in our county and many farmers are now being
forced to decide whether it is worth their while continuing to
farm”, said Deputy McConalogue.
Brexit day of action in Bridgend 05.10.16
THE 'Breaking Down Brexit Campaign' will host a day of action at
the border in Bridgend this Saturday. The rally will have a
"carnival atmosphere" with music, singing and drama. A re-enactment
of the customs post of old will be set up with a number of vintage
cars stopped and asked if they have "anything to declare?" The day
of action has been organised by several groups opposed to the North
- which voted against Brexit - being taken without its consent out
of the European Union. The groups include trade unionists, the
business community, community groups, charities, disability
campaigners and others.
Co-organiser Dermot O’Hara from Destined said Brexit would
negatively impact areas including EU funding; human rights and peace
grants. "This will put services under further strain and lead to a
reduction of services and increased isolation for our community," he
said. The event will take place in Bridgend on Saturday, October 8,
2016 at 3pm.
€2.2m windfall for wedding guest 05.10.16
A visitor to Donegal claimed a Lotto jackpot prize of €2,266,323
yesterday at National Lottery HQ in Dublin. The winner, who ask to
remain anonymous, had travelled from England to attend a wedding on
Saturday and bought a Quick Pick Lotto ticket at Centra Foodmarket
in Carrigart. “It surreal, like I’m in a dream. Crazy…but a good
crazy! I couldn’t believe it when I saw I had the winning numbers. I
rang my girlfriend and then my sister to share the news.” He said he
would try to "keep (his feet) on the ground" but that one of his
first purchases would be a new car. The lucky winner shared the €4.5
million jackpot with a family syndicate of two from Kerry.
Average Donegal house price now 140K 05.10.16
DONEGAL property prices were 10% higher between July and
September 2016 than a year ago. The average house price is now
€140,000 or 23% above its lowest point, according to the latest
report from Daft.ie
The current national average asking price is now €221,000 compared
to €205,000 a year ago and €164,000 at its lowest point.
In Dublin, prices have risen by an average of €102,500 – or 46.5%
from their lowest point in mid-2012. The average increase out the
capital was €48,600, or 36% since 2013. Report author Ronan Lyons
said the latest figures are a "cause for concern". He said that
while there was "little risk of a credit-fuelled bubble" lack of
supply is "severely affecting the market".
Parishioners offered church stones 05.10.16
A PARISH priest has devised a unique plan to demolish and
recycle an old church wall - by inviting parishioners to take away
Culdaff-born Fr Paddy O'Kane said the perimeter wall surrounding
Holy Family Church in Derry is in poor condition and would be
dismantled to make way for a new structure. The popular cleric is
now hoping his unorthodox salvage scheme will keep renovation costs
to a minimum while simultaneously helping anyone in need of free
masonry. But he also issued one proviso – that would-be salvage
hunters would be careful and not leave a mess. "We hope to build a
new perimeter wall as the present one is in bad need of repair. If
you would like to take some of the old stones - without making a
mess! You are most welcome to come and help yourself," parishioners
were told via the newsletter.
Majella slates unauthorised fan site 05.10.16
MAJELLA O'Donnell has warned fans about an unauthorised Twitter
account purporting to be her husband Daniel's official fan page.
Majella (56) said she feared genuine fans of the Donegal singer
would be misled by the @danielodonnell1 account. While the country
star (54) has an official Facebook page he has never joined Twitter.
The mystery account appears to have been set up by a music webstore
based in Australia. Majella tweeted: "I don't know anything about a
Twitter page 4 Daniel! This is NOT an official page if his manager
is not aware of it. (Please) don't mislead fans."
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