• A new playground and carpark can go ahead at the Demesne in Castlerea, after Roscommon County Councilors passed the part 8 planning permission.

    The project will mean a refurbished playground for the town, and a new carpark that can be used by people attending both the playground and the public swimming pool.

    Locally-based business Harmac Medical has given a large donation towards new playground equipment.

    Castlerea-based Fianna Fail Councillor Paschal Fitzmaurice is hopeful the project can get up and running before the swimming pool opens for the Summer season.

    He says the development will greatly enhance amenities in the town.

  • A decision now needs to be made as to how exactly the HSE run Rosalie Unit in Castlerea is to develop, according to Minister for Communications, local deputy Denis Naughten. 

    At a meeting yesterday in the unit with the Minister for the Elderly Jim Daly and attended by local public representatives and HSE representatives, seven different options were presented as to how the unit might progress. 

    At present the Rosalie Unit in Castlerea is a residential home for about 12 residents with dementia.

    A local campaign group has worked hard to keep the facility open, after the HSE had stated its intention to close it some months ago. 

    However that decision was reversed and Minister Naughten received a firm commitment from Taoiseach Leo Varadkar that the unit as a residential facility for patients with mental health issues, would remain open. Leo Varadkar had given the same commitment in 2015 when he was Minister for Health and the future of the unit was under threat. 


  • Deliver on your promises to the people of Roscommon and keep the Rosalie Unit open in Castlerea. That’s the simple message that a delegation from Castlerea will deliver to Ministers Simon Harris and Jim Brady when they meet in Dublin on Wednesday evening.

    The Rosalie unit in Castlerea, is a residential facility for elderly  people with psychiatric conditions. The facility had catered for up to 34 residents in recent years, but is now down to 12 people, with no new admissions for some time.

    Three years ago, when news of the possible closure of the facility emerged, the people of Castlerea and surrounding areas were given a commitment by the then Minister Kathleen Lynch that the unit would not close.

    But according to Liam Walsh, a member of the delegation travelling to Dublin on Wednesday, and whose mother is a resident of the Rosalie Unit, the future of the unit remains in the balance.

    He spoke to Midwest News today about why the delegation is travelling to Dublin for the third time this year in an effort to retain the unit.


    A Garda who was shot and seriously injured in Castlerea last night has died from his injuries.

    The shooting incident took place in the town shortly before midnight.

    It's understood an ambulance crew that were in the area treated the detective, but he has since passed away from his injuries.

    One man was arrested and is being detained at Castlerea Garda Station.

    The scene has been preserved for a forensic examination and the State Pathologist's Office has been informed.


  • A murder investigation is underway after a Detective Garda was shot dead last night in Castlerea, Co Roscommon.

    He's been officially named as Detective Garda Colm Horkan - a native of Charlestown in Co Mayo.

    Detective Horkan was shot at a number of times with his own weapon on Main Street in Castlerea, just before midnight.

    It's understood he was on patrol last night when he went to deal with an incident on Main Street.

    It developed into an altercation in which he was shot and critically injured with his own firearm.

    The detective, who was in his late 40's, was treated by emergency services but passed away just after 6am this morning.

    He is the 89th Garda to die in the line of duty.

    A man in his 40s has been arrested and has been taken to Castlerea Garda Station for questioning.

    Parish priest of Castlerea, Fr John McManus, says it's deeply shocking and very tragic.

  • The N60 road from Castlerea train station to Ballymoe remains closed for another week, as work is continuing on a new overlay on that section of road.

    The works are due to be completed next weekend.

    However, Castlerea-based Fianna Fail Councillor Paschal Fitzmaurice is calling for emergency funding to be provided to improve sections of the N60 between Harristown and Ballymoe village.

    Councillor Fitzmaurice says the Summer drought has caused parts of the road to sink, and will require emergency works.

  • An emergency meeting of Roscommon county Council is getting underway about now (10am) to discuss what’s termed the “imminent” and “brutal”closure of the Rosalie Unit in Castlerea.

    There has been widespread local anger over the confirmation from the HSE, earlier this month, that the Rosalie Unit would cease to function as a community psychiatric unit.

    Alternative care arrangements, according to the HSE, are being put in place for each of the present residents of the facility.

    Up to 70 protesters gathered at the gates of the Rosalie Unit on Thursday last to condemn the HSE decision.

    Councillors are calling on Roscommon County Council to take a stance on the issue.

  • The Castlerea prisoner that escaped from custody while attending the Emergency Department of Mayo University Hospital on Saturday morning last is back in garda custody.

    The Prison Service confirmed to Midwest News this morning that the man in his thirties was apprehended by gardai near Tullamore last night.

    He is now in garda custody.

    The prisoner took off by foot from the ED of the Castlebar hospital at about 10am last Saturday morning.

    The garda search for the man ended approx 72 hours later when he was discovered in county Offaly last night.


  • A family advocate, who travelled to Dublin yesterday for a meeting on the future of the Rosalie Unit in Castlerea, has described the events as a shambles.

    HSE management failed to attend the meeting between a local delegation and Ministers Harris and Daly over the future of the unit.

    A local delegation made up of Oireachtas members, family advocates and local councillors were due to meet with Ministers Harris and Daly and Executive Clinical Director for HSE West Amanda Burke and Chief Health Officer Tony Canavan. However Ms Burke and Mr Canavan were not in attendance.

    This was despite a formal request from Senator Maura Hopkins’ office requesting they attend so a clearer picture could be gained about what is happening with the Rosalie Unit.

    It was agreed that the meeting would be reconvened and Senator Hopkins wants a new date confirmed by the end of today.

    Liam Walsh’s mother is a resident of the Rosalie Unit and he was party of the family delegation that travelled to Dublin yesterday. He told Midwest News they are beyond frustrated

  • Clinical assessments on the 12 residents of the Rosalie Unit in Castlerea were completed in May and were not paused as had been the understanding.

    That’s the update given to Fine Gael Senator Maura Hopkins by Chief Executive Officer of the HSE Tony Canavan this week.

    Concerns were raised with Senator Hopkins by family advocate Liam Walsh yesterday, that the clinical assessments were continuing, despite the fact that Minister Jim Daly had requested they be paused.

    Mr Canavan told Senator Hopkins that he had replied to Minister Daly’s letter requesting the pause and told him that he was not possible for him to agree to a pause on the assessments of the residents.

    He also said the clinical assessments were in fact completed in May of this year and now an independent review of those assessments is now taking place.

  • Fire brigades from Ballaghaderreen and Ballyhaunis battled gorse fires at Cloonfower last night.

    The fires, which stretched for about two kilometres, occurred between Castlerea and Loughglynn.

    Units from both areas tackled the fires into the early hours and brought them under control overnight.

    Ballaghaderreen Fire Brigade has thanked the public for their help and co-operation last night. 

  • Members of the Roscommon Fire Service are attending a fire at a property in Castlerea this morning.

    The fire broke out at a 2-storey derelict building on Church Road - very close to the Castlerea Fire Station which has been closed for the past three and a half years.

    Roscommon County Council CEO Eugene Cummins recently confirmed that the fire station will remain closed permanently.

    Gardai say the cause of this morning's fire is not yet known, and is under investigation.


  • A fire occurred in a shed behind a family home in Castlerea in the early hours of this morning.

    The Ballaghaderreen fire brigade attended the scene, at around 5am and the blaze was brought under control.

    One person was taken from the scene to the hospital in what was described as a precautionary measure.

    The fire did not spread to the house but was quite intense with a significant quantity of turf stored in the shed.

  • Firefighters are battling a forest fire between Frenchpark and Castlerea again this morning.

    Ballaghaderreen, Boyle and Elphin brigades are back out at the blaze, after battling it into the early hours of this morning.

    They also have air support from one water carrier helicopter.

    Midwest News understands the blaze is extensive but no homes are under threat at present.


    Firefighters battled a major forest fire between Frenchpark and Castlerea yesterday evening and into the early hours of this morning.

    The fire service from Ballaghaderreen battled the blaze from early yesterday evening and they were joined by brigades from other areas also.

    Midwest News understands that firefighters battled the extensive blaze into the early hours of this morning and the blaze was brought under control.




  •  Four men have appeared in court charged with assault, false imprisonment and criminal damage as well as animal cruelty in Roscommon last year.


    There was a significant Garda presence at Castlerea District court today for their appearance in connection with an incident at a repossessed farmhouse in Falsk, Strokestown, on December 16th.


    PJ Sweeney, of High Cairn, Ramelton, and Martin O'Toole, of Stripe, Irishtown, Claremorris, along with Paul Beirne, of Croghan, Boyle, and David Lawlor, with an address of 5, Brookhaven, Blanchardstown, Dublin, were described as facing very serious charges by gardai.


    The court heard that Mr Sweeney and Mr O'Toole had previously been before the court on charges connected to incidents at Falsk, but more charges were now before the court.


    Evidence of arrest, charge and caution was entered on behalf of Mr Beirne and Mr Lawlor but they did not reply to any of the charges.


    All four are charged with assault, criminal damage, arson, theft as well as a cruelty to animal charge and all four were granted bail with conditions and will be back in court on December 20th.

  • The Frenchpark to Castlerea Rd (R361) remains closed to traffic this morning  between Frenchpark  and the local Fairymount turn-off following a collision yesterday afternoon between a car and a tractor.

    Three people sustained injuries in the collision and one person was removed to the hospital by air ambulance.

    Gardai in Castlerea say they expect the road to re-open about 11 am this morning. Traffic diversions are in place.

    A garda technical examination of the scene will be carried out this morning.

  • A Garda has been hospitalised after allegedly being assaulted in Co Roscommon.

    The Garda was allegedly attacked at about 1am this morning at Roselawn, Castlerea by two men aged in their late 30's and 60's.

    The male Garda and the suspected offenders were taken to hospital with non-life threatening injuries, and Gardai say their investigations are continuing.




  • Gardai are appealing for information following a break-in to a hardware shop in Castlerea overnight. 

    Michael Cooney and Sons Homevalue, Main Street in Castlerea was broken into last night or early this morning and a number of items were stolen. Gardai are asking anyone who saw anything suspicious between 8pm on Saturday evening and 5am this morning to contact them on 094-9621630. 

  • Gardai in Castlerea are investigating the sudden death of a man at an apartment in the town on Thursday evening.

    The man in his 30's was discovered at his home in Castlerea at about 8.30 on Thursday evening.

    The State Pathologist's office was called to the scene, and following a post-mortem examination yesterday, Gardai have confirmed they're not treating the matter as suspicious.

    A file will now be prepared for the Coroner.