• A Roscommon TD has slammed what he calls "continued efforts by the HSE and Government" to close the Rosalie Unit in Castlerea.

    Despite a number of promises made by the Government in recent years, the HSE is continuing with its campaign to close the unit and move the remaining residents to other facilities, according to Independent TD Michael Fitzmaurice.

    He's aware of one resident who was taken to hospital, and was told he would not be returning to the Rosalie unit.

    Deputy Fitzmaurice says it's unfortunate that the HSE is relying only on clinical reports, and that the residents and their families are not being listened to.

  • Castlerea woman Mary Coyne, Ireland’s oldest person, died yesterday (Monday) at the age of 108.

    She was a resident of the Aras Mathair Phoil Community Nursing Unit in Castlerea.

    Eight years ago she received the centenarian medal  from President Michael D. Higgins.

    Interviewed by a reporter on reaching her 100th birthday, the mother-of-two,  grandmother and great grandmother, attributed her longevity to “taking life one day at a time”.

    Mary, whose maiden name was Griffin, hailed from the townland of Rathbarna near Castlerea town.

    She was predeceased by her husband, Roger, some years ago.

    Her remains will repose at McDonagh Funeral Home, Castlerea, this (Tuesday) evening prior to removal to St. Patrick’s Church, Castlerea.

     She will be laid to rest  in Castlerea cemetery  tomorrow (Wednesday) following funeral Mass at 11 a.m.


  • Senator Maura Hopkins again today met with Minister for Mental Health and Older People Jim Daly, in relation to the Rosalie Unit in Castlerea.

    Senator Hopkins says Minister Daly has informed her that he very much has an open mind in relation to the unity and advised her that he will be speaking directly this week with Dr Ann Gallagher, Consultant Psychiatrist of Later Life Roscommon, in relation to the clinical assessments.

    Senator Hopkins says she understands that a number of clinical assessments took place last week with the involvement of family members.

  • Sitting Castlerea based Fianna Fail Cllr Paschal Fitzmaurice was not selected on the ticket for the party for the local elections at last night’s convention held in the Abbey Hotel.

    Four people were nominated for the convention, sitting Councillors Paschal Fitzmaurice and Orla Leyden, along with Larry Brennan from Roscommon town and Marty McDermott from Oran.

    Cllr Orla Leyden and Marty McDermott were selected at the convention last night.

    So it looks as if Cllr Fitzmaurice will have to be added to the ticket. It was understood prior to convention that while two candidates would be selected, there would be the option of adding to the ticket after that.

  • A Special homecoming celebration is planned in Castlerea this evening for new women’s European Boxing Champion Aoife O’Rourke.

    She beat Poland’s Elzebieta Wojcik to become only the second Irish woman to win gold at the Elite Level.

    Cathaoirleach of Roscommon County Council Pascal Fitzmaurice has confirmed to Midwest News that a special celebration will take place on the square in Castlerea this evening at 7pm for Aoife.

  • The sudden death has taken place of Castlerea pharmacist John Tully, who was the secretary and a founding member of the Mayo / Roscommon Hospice.

    Mr Tully died suddenly at his home yesterday at the age of 72.

    He's survived by his wife Maura, three sons Vincent, Ross and Niall, daughter Sheena, his brother Paul, three sisters - Mary, Leonie and Hilary, grandchildren and extended family.

    John Tully was involved with the Mayo / Roscommon Hospice since its foundation in 1992 to provide hospice and palliative care services to the two counties.

    His funeral arrangements have not yet been confirmed.

  • The body of Valerie Hough, who went missing from her home in the Knockroe area of Castlerea, county Roscommon yesterday morning , has been located.

    Gardaí are treating the case as a personal tragedy. A file will now be prepared for the Coroner.

    The gardai have thanked the public for their assistance.

  • The remains of Detective Garda Colm Horkan will be brought to his family home in  Charlestown this evening.

    People will get a chance to pay their respects as they're brought through Ballaghaderreen, where he worked in the past.

    Preparations for a state funeral are under way.

    A man remains in custody in connection with the murder of the 49-year-old in Castlerea, Co Roscommon, on Wednesday.

    Bishop of Elphin Kevin Doran is urging people to be united at this time.

  • Three men have been arrested after Gardaí in Frenchpark and Castlerea seized more than €15,000 worth of cash and cannabis herb as part of an ongoing operation into the sale and supply of drugs in the area.

    Gardaí conducted a search of a property in the Frenchpark area at 8.30pm yesterday evening with the assistance of the Armed Support Unit.

    During the search €13,500 in cash was located along with €1,700 worth of cannabis herb (subject to analysis).

    Items associated with drug dealing were also found in the property such as weighing scales.

    Three men – one aged in his late 20s, and two aged in their mid to late 30s – have been arrested in connection with this seizure.

    One of these men, who is in his late 30s, has been charged in connection with this matter and will appear before a sitting of Castlerea District Court today.

    The other two men have been released without charge and a file is being prepared for the director of Public Prosecutions.

  • Connacht will have 2 Boxers competing in the Finals of the European Junior Championships today in Russia.

    Lisa O’Rourke from Castlerea Boxing Club and Patrick Myers from Sligo will both be in the ring today.

    Connacht had 7 Boxers in these Championships and Mayo’s Joe Hennigan is the Team Manager.

  • Two people were arrested and a car seized in connection with a number of robberies and attempted burglaries in Ballaghaderreen earlier this week.

    Both are due to appear in Ballaghaderreen District court today.

    Gardai have appealed for information after a number of incidents occurred within hours of each other between 11pm on Tuesday night last and 3am on Wednesday morning in the town.

    Two burglaries were reported initially and then later that night two separate robberies occurred.

    A woman sustained minor injuries and had her phone, money and tablet taken after she was robbed outside the Bank of Ireland building.

    Gardai carried out six searches yesterday across counties Mayo, Sligo and Roscommon , working with the armed support unit, and a number of items were recovered.

    Gardai seized a car believed to be connected to some of the incidents, and two people were arrested.

    Garda investigations are ongoing and Castlerea gardai have set up an incident room and are appealing for anyone who may have witnessed anything suspicious in the area to contact them at 094-9620019.

    They have also thanked the public for their assistance.


  • Two men have appeared in court this week charged with conveying drugs into Castlerea Prison.

    The Irish Times reports that John Kennedy, Castleburn, Ballymote Co Sligo is charged with unlawful possession of PVP at Ballisodare Post Office on April 9th 2015.

    He is also charged with conveying the drug into Castlerea Prison on a date between April 9th and April 10th, 2015.

    The defendant pleaded not guilty to the charges at yesterday’s sitting of Sligo Circuit Court.

    His co-accused, Brian Duke, of Cois Abhann, Collooney, Co Sligo is charged with unlawful possession of PVP on a date between February 1st and April 9th at Cois Abhann.

    He is also charged with conveying the drug into Castlerea Prison on a date between February 1th and April 10th, 2015. Mr Duke also pleaded not guilty to the two charges.

    The case was due to begin yesterday before a jury of eight men and four women, but has now been put back to next Monday, after some legal issues arose.

  • Unions representing staff at the Rosalie Unit in Castlerea are to return to the Workplace Relations Commission next month, following what they term is a "breach of trust" by the HSE.

    An agreement had been entered into under the guidance of the WRC that would involve the HSE engaging with staff about their future plans, but unions say this has not happened, and staff members are now being asked to apply for a transfer to vacant positions in a number of psychiatric units across Roscommon, Galway and Mayo.

    The staff members are represented by SIPTU, Forsa and the PNA.

    A number of residents in the Rosalie Unit have been transferred to other care settings in recent weeks, and it's understood only 5 residents remain in the Castlerea facility.

    Padraig Mulligan of the Forsa trade union says it's not acceptable to expect a staff member to travel as far as Portumna for work.....

  • Westdoc has confirmed that Glenamaddy, Castlerea and Roscommon have merged since the start of this year, in terms of providing out-of-hours GP services.

    Yesterday, Galway County Councillor Michael Connolly told Midwest New that a Westdoc base had been in operation in Glenamaddy for a number of years, but since Christmas, people in the East Galway region who phone Westdoc for a GP at night or weekends are being advised to travel to Tuam or Roscommon.

    Westdoc has confirmed to Midwest News today that, due to the onerous rota expected of GPs due to the non-filling of vacant posts in rural areas, and the low numbers attending the service, the Glenamaddy, Castlerea and Roscommon cells have now merged.

    In a statement, Westdoc says the GPs are based in the new Primary Care Centre in Roscommon, while patients will also be seen in Glenamaddy or Castlerea as deemed appropriate by the doctor.

    New practice nurses have been employed to operate from the Primary Care Centre in Roscommon at weekends to further enhance the service.

    Westdoc says that, despite the merger, there will be no change in the hours of service provided to patients.