Westport

  • The Gradaim Gnó Mhaigh Eo awards earlier in the year was a huge success for all involved and we caught up with the different winners in each category of the awards - The Castle Bookshop in Castlebar, Ballinrobe Dental in Ballinrobe, Saileen Drum based in Newport and An Port Mór in Westport - and they gave us an insight into how the awards have helped their business and what their plans are for the future to further integrate the Irish language into their business gach lá.

     

     

     

     

  • Westport’s Harry Hughes is in Monaco for the 18th EY World Entrepreneur of the Year Awards.

    Mr Hughes of Portwest won the EY Entrepreneur of the Year Ireland and will be among winners representing 46 countries to compete for the world title and enter the EY World Entrepreneur of the Year Hall of Fame.

    Mr Hughes arrived on Tuesday for the four day event to build up to the overall ceremony.

    The winner will be announced at a ceremony on Saturday evening.

  • IFA will hold its National Hill Sheep Forum on Monday in the Castlecourt Hotel in Westport.

    The forum will commence with a visit to the hill sheep farm of Joe Skehill in Sandfield, Westport at 4.30pm.

    The forum will then move to the Castlecourt Hotel where Minister for Rural and Community Development Michael Ring will officially open the event at 6.30pm.

    A number of speakers will address the forum, including IFA President Joe Healy and representatives from Bord Bia, Kildare Chilling and the IFA Sheep Chairman Sean Dennehy.

    There will also be a discussion forum on the CAP Budget and ANC payments.

  • Increase the daily car parking charges in the car parks in Westport, and increase the hourly rate for parking to 1 euro for the first hour and 50 cents after that, and the deficit of 355,000 euro that the municipal district agreed to in the 2018 budget would be restored.

     That’s the view of Westport based Fine Gael councillor Tereasa McGuire. She made the proposal at yesterday’s monthly meeting of the West Mayo Municipal District.

    The refusal by West Mayo councillors to introduce pay and display street car parking charges in the town, caused controversy at the Ballina Municipal District meeting last week. Councillors in Ballina were told that the payment of grants to voluntary groups across the county, under GMA funding is on hold, until the local authority can make up a 400,000 euro deficit that was to be collected through the introduction of additional Pay and Display street carparking charges, as agreed in the 2018 budget.

    Ballina councillors say it is unfair that voluntary groups in Ballina are now paying the price for Westport failing to introduce what was agreed.

    Councillor McGuire told Midwest News today her proposal, if adopted, could resolve the financial issue.

  • Increase the hourly rate in the council carparks in Westport, rather than introduce street car parking charges in the town.

    That’s the view of Fine Gael councillor Tereasa McGuire.

    She told Midwest News this morning that if Tom Gilligan, Director of Services for Mayo county council, needs to secure additional funding, then he should increase the hourly rate in the carparks in Westport from 70 cent to one euro for the first hour.

    Last week, Tom Gilligan outlined plans to councillors to introduce street carparking charges in 8 towns across the county.

    Cllr McGuire says the proposal is unfair to rate payers, businesses and the general public.

  • An Independent Councillor says the reduction of outdoor staff with Mayo County Council for the Westport area by six people in total is deeply concerning. 

    Cllr. Christy Hyland says standards have to be maintained in the Westport area. He says outdoor staff are vital in Westport due to the high volume of people coming into the town on an ongoing basis. 

    He raised his concerns at a recent meeting of the West Mayo Municipal District and afterwards told Midwest Radio that he is going to persist on this matter.

  • Irish Rail is banning people from drinking alcohol on some of its routes from next week.

    The ban will come into effect from Friday October 12th, and will be enforced every Friday, following regular reports of anti-social behaviour.

    It will affect the Heuston to Galway routes departing at 11:25am, 1:25pm and 3:35pm; as well as the 2:45pm train from Heuston to Westport.

  • Seven town centres are to become free public wi-fi zones.

    Unlimited access to high speeds  will initially be introduced in Knock, Westport, Sligo, Monaghan, and Carrick-On-Shannon town centres.

    Wifi spots in Kerry and Donegal will also be brought on stream.

    Magnet Networks will install access points on their premises, providing free connectivity within the town centres.

    The scheme is already in operation in Galway.

  • A local election candidate is urging people to register to vote before Tuesday’s deadline.

    Shane Fitzgerald, who is running as a local election candidate in the Westport area says he is finding that up to 1 in 4 people that he has canvassed, are not on the register of electors.

    Mr Fitzgerald says the form to register must be with the council by Tuesday and is very straightforward to complete.

    He is urging people who are entitled to vote, to register so they can exercise their democratic right.

  • It now looks likely that the long awaited flood relief works at Carrowholly outside Westport will get underway by September.

    That’s according to the Minister for Rural and Community Development Michael Ring.

    The Minister says over a million euro has been set aside by government for the works and he says it remains available, but he says it’s completely unacceptable that it has taken months to get the OPW and Mayo County Council to meet and get the project underway.

    Many homes in the Carrowholly area of Westport have been marooned over recent years due to severe flooding.

    Minister Ring says the OPW has in recent days been meeting residents on the ground in Carrowholly and he says he is confident that the flood relief works will get underway in September, ahead of this winter.

  • Gardai in Westport have arrested a man in connection with a spate of thefts from charity boxes in licensed premises in the town.

    It’s understood the suspect is also being questioned about a break-in to a caravan at the rear of a B&B in Westport.

  • A court has heard that the man suspected of murdering Ciara Glennon 20 years ago in Australia is socially awkward with an "obsessive sexual interest" in abduction.

    For the first time, prosecutors in Perth have revealed disturbing details about why they believe Bradley Robert Edwards is the man responsible for abducting and murdering 27-year old Ms Glennon and two other young women in the 1990s.

    Ciara's father Denis Glennon is a native of Westport, Co Mayo.

    The Irish Independent reports that the pre-trial hearing of the accused, who's from Claremont, Western Australia, began on Monday after its proceedings were delayed on a number of occasions.

    Ciara Glennon disappeared on March 14, 1997, after a night out celebrating St Patrick's Day in the Perth suburb of Claremont.

    Her body was discovered 18 days after she disappeared in bushland 50km north of Perth and had to be identified by her parents.

    The court heard DNA taken from Ms Glennon's body, including from under her fingernails, was consistent with Mr Edwards's DNA.

    Fibres in her hair also corresponded with the same fibres found inside Mr Edwards's car.

    Bradley Robert Edwards is also accused of murdering 18-year old Sarah Spiers and 23-year old Jane Rimmer in 1996 and 1997.

    He previously pleaded not guilty to all charges, which also include raping a 17-year-old girl in 1995 and breaking into an 18-year-old woman's bedroom in her home in 1988.

    The court was told that  Mr Edwards was "an introverted, socially awkward man, and that the allegations against him show he had an "obsessive sexual interest in the abduction, imprisonment and forcible rape of women in degrading and violent circumstances".

    Following Mr Edwards' arrest in 2016, Ms Glennon's father Denis described the murder charge as a "bitter-sweet moment".

    Mr Edwards will go on trial in the Supreme Court of Western Australia in July.

     

  • Mayo County Council has granted planning permission for the development of a new €10 million euro global headquarters for Portwest at The Quay in Westport.

    Two weeks ago, members of the West Mayo Municipal District approved a material contravention to allow the site of the proposed development on Roman Island at The Quay to be re-zoned, and the council has now given the green light for the predominantly four-storey building, subject to 37 conditions.

    Portwest now employs over 3,000 staff worldwide and expected to treble staff numbers and reach $1 billion turnover in the next 7 years.

    The new global headquarters at the site of the Old Mill on The Quay will accommodate some 150 staff.

    Owen Hughes, Director of Portwest, told Midwest News that they're delighted to have secured planning permission for the new office development, and says that - if there are no objections - they would hope to start construction early in 2019.

  • A Mayo man won Gold for a radio documentary on Frank Stagg at last night’s IMRO Radio Awards in Kilkenny.

    Liamy MacNally from Westport told Gold in the Documentary/Feature category for his production – Frank Stagg’s Three Funerals.

    Frank Stagg was a Provisional IRA hunger striker from Hollymount in Co Mayo. He died in February 1976 after 62 days on hunger strike while in prison.

    Frank Stagg's burial caused considerable controversy in Ireland, with republicans and two of his brothers seeking to have Stagg buried in the republican plot in Ballina in accordance with his wishes, while his widow, his brother Emmet Stagg and the Irish government wished to have him buried in the family plot in the same cemetery and to avoid republican involvement in the funeral. As the republicans waited at Dublin Airport for the body, the Irish government ordered the flight to be diverted to Shannon Airport.

    His body was taken to Ballina and buried near the family plot. In order to prevent the body being disinterred and reburied by republicans, the grave was covered with concrete. In November 1977, a group of republicans tunnelled under the concrete to recover the coffin under cover of darkness and reburied it in the republican plot.

    Liamy’s documentary aired on the Documentary on One on RTE Radio 1 and last night he was awarded the top accolade at the IMRO Radio Awards.

     

  • Minister for Rural and Community Development Michael Ring has today announced that the N5 Westport to Turlough Road road project is to go to e-Tender for the procurement of a main contractor.

    Mayo County Council will be working with Transport Infrastructure Ireland (TII) in progressing the scheme.  The total cost of the investment in this project is approximately €170m which includes land, construction and all other costs.

    Minister Ring says it is one of the most significant investments in the West of Ireland in a generation. It is a signal of intent for the Atlantic corridor and it will help to drive the development of the county.

    The N5 out of Westport into Castlebar and onto Turlough is an exceptionally busy road, with huge volumes of traffic travelling on it, on a daily basis.

    The project has been mooted for up to four decades now, and today’s announcement is expected to see a contractor on site by this time next year.

    Speaking to Midwest News today Minister Ring said it’s very welcome news for the county.

  • Minister Michael Ring has today confirmed that the Government has allocated €22m for the improvement and maintenance of roads in Mayo in 2019.

    The allocation for improvement of roads in Mayo is €21,058,639, while the allocation for maintenance of roads is €1,296,569.

    Included in the allocation is €10m for the Westport to Turlough road.

    Minister Ring says this project is going out for tender in January and all going well a contractor should be onsite by September or October of 2019.

    This is just one of a large number of projects to be funded under today’s allocation.

     

     

    TII 2019 National Road Allocations
    Total of All Allocations: €22,355,208
    Mayo County Council
    Improvement
    National Primary
    Route Name
    Allocation 2019
    HD15 and HD17 Minor Works - Nat
    5
    N05MO_088 Swinford
    4,812
    17
    N18MO_041 Knock
    13,740
    17
    N17MO_068 N17 R320 Junction Claremorris
    300,000
    Total National - HD 15 and HD17 Minor Works - Nat:
    €318,552
    Major Scheme  - Nat
    5
    Charlestown By-Pass
    200,000
    5
    Westport to Turlough
    10,000,000
    Total National Primary - Major Scheme - Nat:
    €10,200,000
    Minor Works - Nat
    26
    N26 Clongullane Bridge
    700,000
    Total National Primary - Minor Works - Nat:
    €700,000
    Pavement - Nat
    HD28 NP Pavement Renewals 2019 MO
    160,000
    5
    N5 Ballyvarry Ph1 incl N58
    480,000
    5
    N5 Castlebar Distributor Road Section 2 (East)
    250,000
    17
    N17 Kilkelly North
    500,000
    26
    N26 Foxford North
    500,000
    26
    N26 Swinford to the N5
    500,000
    Total National Primary - Pavement - Nat:
    €2,390,000
    National Secondary
    Route Name
    Allocation 2019
    HD15 and HD17 Minor Works - Nat
    59
    N59MO_084 Bellacorrick
    7,300
    60
    N560MO_056 Bekan Rail Overbridge
    8,286
    60
    N60MO_079 Claremorris Road, Balla
    38,892
    84
    N84 Ballinrobe Traffic & Transportation Study
    19,883
    Total National Secondary - HD15 and HD17 Minor Works - Nat:
    €74,361
    Major Scheme - Nat
    59
    Westport to Mulranny
    950,000
    Total National Secondary - Major Scheme - Nat:
    €950,000
    Minor Works - Nat
    59
    N59 Kilmeena LVNS
    600,000
    59
    N59 Newport to Derrada Realignment
    370,000
    59
    Rossow Bends
    160,000
    60
    N60 Heathlawn
    650,000
    60
    N60 Lagnamuck
    850,000
    60
    N60 Manulla Cross
    100,000
    Total National Secondary - Minor Works - Nat:
    €2,730,000
    Pavement  - Nat
    HD28 NS Pavement Renewals 2019 MO
    170,000
    59
    N59 Ballina Bunree Bridge / Junction Pavement Strengthening
    265,000
    59
    N59 Ballycroy South
    300,000
    59
    N59 Ballyveeney to Castlehill
    500,000
    84
    N84 Ballinrobe Town North
    400,000
    84
    N84 Sandymount to R317
    200,000
    Total National Secondary - Pavement - Nat:
    €1,835,000
    Both NP & NS
    Route Name
    Allocation 2019
    HD15 and HD17 Minor Works - Nat
    Fencing Retrofit - Mayo
    100,000
    Total Both NP & NS - HD17 Minor Works - Nat:
    €100,000
    LA Eng Support - B.1.1.- Nat
    Local Authority Support (Improvement) 2019 MO
    330,282
    PO Support (Improvement) 2019 MO
    1,380,444
    Total Both NP & NS - LA Eng  Support - B.1.1. - Nat:
     €        1,710,726
    Route Lighting Improvement - Nat
    NW Bypasses Energy Saving Public Lighting Consultancy
    50,000
    Total Both NP&NS - Route Lighting Improvement - Nat:
    €50,000
    Total Improvement Allocations:
    €21,058,639
    Maintenance
    National Primary
    Route Name
    Allocation 2019
    Maintenance
    NP Ordinary Maintenance 2019 MO
    253,415
    NP Route Lighting 2019 MO
    88,878
    NP Winter Maintenance 2019 MO
    200,000
    Total National Primary - Maintenance:
    €542,293
    National Secondary
    Route Name
    Allocation 2019
    Maintenance
    NS Ordinary Maintenance 2019 MO
    323,498
    NS Route Lighting 2019 MO
    111,578
    NS Winter Maintenance 2019 MO
    230,000
    Total National Secondary - Maintenance:
    €665,076
    Both NP & NS
    Route Name
    Allocation 2019
    LA Eng - Support - B.1.2. - Nat
    Local Authority Support (Maintenance) 2019 MO
    79,200
    Local Authority Support (Winter Maintenance) 2019 MO
    10,000
    Total Both NP & NS  - LA Eng Support - B.1.2. - Nat:
    €89,200
    Total Maintenance Allocations:
    €1,296,569

     

    Meanwhile local TD, Denis Naughten has welcomed the allocation of €14.3m investment by Transport Infrastructure Ireland in the national road network throughout County Roscommon.

    Minister Naughten says this investment includes €4m for the new section of road at the Hill of Oran, resurfacing of Athleague Village and the Town of Castlerea and the upgrading of sections of the Boyle to Athlone road”.

    Funding of €3m has also been set aside to complete the planning and design for the new N5 road between Ballaghaderreen and Scramogue which will not only improve access to the West but allow for the future development of Strokestown, Tulsk, Bellanagare & Frenchpark”.

     

  • Minister for Rural and Community Development Michael Ring Mr. Michael Ring has today received confirmation from the Department of Education and Skills that a premises has been secured for the Westport Educate Together school to operate in.

    The Department of Education and Skills has been working closely with Educate Together to progress the establishment of a new multi-denominational school in Westport. In light of this development of securing a premises, it is planned that Educate Together will open in this premises in September 2019.

     

  • A fire which broke out on the grounds of the Convent in Westport was brought under control last night.

    The fire was described as a "minor incident" by Gardai and was quickly extinguished.

    The main building was not affected, it has been reported that it was a gazebo on the grounds of the convent that went up in flames. The cause of the blaze is yet to be determined.

     

     

  • Motorists are again being advised by gardai not to leave valuables in their vehicles. In follows a spate of break-ins to parked vehicles across the county last weekend.

    Gardai are investigating thefts in Manulla, Westport and Charlestown.

    A parked van was broken into on Saturday evening at Lurga, Charlestown. The incident occurred between 3pm on Saturday and 3pm on Sunday. Power tools were taken from a red Nissan Primera van.

    A green Ford Transit van parked at Westport Leisure Centre had a window smashed between 9.30am on Saturday and 3pm on Sunday afternoon. Items taken from the van included an iPad Mini and Bluetooth headphones all stored in a nike back pack.

    On Sunday evening between 9pm and 11pm a white Volkswagen Golf parked outside Manulla Community Centre was broken into and a handbag was taken.

    Gardai believe that all three thefts may be connected to a single, highly mobile gang.

  • Motorists are being advised of potential disruption in the Westport area this Saturday as the 2018 Westportif cycle takes place.

    Over 650 cyclists from all over the country are taking part in the event, and traffic is expected to be busy in Westport Town as a result.

    The participants will sign on from 6.30 to 9.30 at the Towers Bar on the Quay, with cyclists heading off from 9am.

    The Quay area is expected to be busy with cyclists between 9 and 10am, before they depart for Louisburg on the R335 to Ashleigh Falls.

    The shorter 80k route then goes north onto the N59 to Westport, while the longer 120 and 160km route turn for Leenane and Innagh Valley, joiing the N59 at Recess via Maam Cross.

    Most cyclists will have returned by 4pm.

    Organisers are asking all road users to be aware of possible traffic disruption on Saturday as a result of the popular event.