• A new Garda Superintendent has been appointed to the Castlerea District.

    The Garda Press office has confirmed that Supt Goretti Sheridan has been assigned responsibility for the Castlerea Garda district.

    This is one of ten new Superintendent appointments, taking immediate effect.


  • A Roscommon TD has criticised the HSE for failing to staff services promised at the former Rosalie Home in Castlerea.

    Following the closure of the Rosalie Unit, the Department of Health announced an investment of €2.6 million in developing a new E-Mental Health Hub in Castlerea, which would be funded by the HSE.

    It would include a day hospital for Psychiatry in Later Life, and CAMHS Connect - which would provide round-the-clock support for young people presenting with mental health problems, via tele-psychiatry.

    However, Roscommon-Galway Sinn Fein TD Claire Kerrane says funding is not being provided by the HSE to staff these services.

    Deputy Kerrane is raising the issue in the Dail this afternoon, and told Midwest News that it's real blow to Castlerea that the Rosalie Home was closed and replaced by services that the HSE is not now funding..

  • No progress was made on securing the future of the Rosalie Unit in Castlerea, following a meeting between local public representatives, family members, HSE officials and Minister Jim Daly on Wednesday night.

    According to both Fine Gael Senator Maura Hopkins and family advocate Liam Walsh, the status quo remains and the issue is no further on.

    The meeting was attended by Minister Daly, local representatives and Charlie Meehan Head of Mental Health Services and Tony Canavan Chief Health Officer.

    It was confirmed by the HSE officials that clinical assessments are continuing on the 12 residents of the unit but the families were informed in letters this week, that these assessments will not contribute the decision on the future plans for the Rosalie Unit but are being used to put care plans in place for residents.

    Tony Canavan is due to meet with Minister Daly again after the clinical assessments are complete.


    Liam Walsh’s mother is a resident at the Rosalie Unit. He too attended last night’s meeting.

    He said it is disappointing that the status quo remains and it is creating anxiety for the residents.

    Mr Walsh told Midwest News that when visiting his mother on the day of the meeting, another resident asked him to tell the Minister and HSE officials that they don’t want to leave the unit.

  • The person appointed to carry out an independent review of the clinical assessments carried out at the Rosalie Unit in Castlerea, has withdrawn from the process.

    That was confirmed to relatives of service-users of the facility yesterday.

    Clinical assessments were carried out earlier this year at the unit to establish the needs of the residents going forward.

    An independent review of those assessments was being carried out, after the assessments were concluded in May of this year.

    However the person appointed to carry out the review by the College of Psychiatrists has now withdrawn from the process.

    The review was due to be completed by September of this year but relatives of residents were informed yesterday that it will now be January of 2019 before the review is completed, as an independent third party is being sought to finish the work.

    Liam Walsh, whose mother is a resident at the Rosalie Unit told Midwest News today that it is further disappointing news for families.

  • A public meeting will be held in Castlerea next Monday night to discuss the future of the Rosalie Unit, which provides residential care for 12 people with dementia.

    It now appears the unit will close, following comments made by Tony Canavan of the HSE on local radio yesterday, and at a meeting with local Oireachtas representatives on Friday last.

    Families of the residents being cared for at the Rosalie Unit say they have had little or no engagement with the HSE on the future of the unit- despite Minister Jim Daly saying several months ago that the HSE should engage with local stakeholders before making any decision.

    A public meeting will take place in Hester's Golden Eagle Lounge next Monday evening at 8.30 to try and prevent the closure of the Rosalie Care Home.

  • A public meeting will take place in Castlerea tonight, to discuss the future of the Rosalie Care Home.

    The unit currently accommodates 12 elderly patients with Alzheimers and dementia, but the future of the home is in doubt, following an admission recently by the HSE that there will be no new admissions, while families of residents are to be consulted about moving them to other facilities in Castlebar and Ballinasloe.

    Liam Walsh, who’s mother Breda is a resident at the Rosalie Home for the past 8 years, has organised tonight’s meeting in Hesters Golden Eagle Lounge at 8pm and is appealing to the local community to come along and join the campaign to try and retain the Rosalie Home – not just for the current residents but for those who will need such mental health facilities in years to come…

  • A public meeting in Castlerea last night on the future of the Rosalie Unit heard that a now senior Minister had received written confirmation of assurances given in 2015 over the future of the unit.

    The meeting was held last night over fears about the future of the unit, which is currently home to 12 elderly patients with Alzheimer’s and dementia.

    The HSE has confirmed there will be no new admissions, while the families of residents are to be consulted about moving them to other facilities in Castlebar and Ballinasloe.

    Earlier yesterday a family delegation met with senior HSE official Tony Canavan, who told them that the unit is not in the future plans of the HSE.

    In 2015 the Rosalie Unit was in danger of closing but the situation was resolved and assurances were given at that time by Minister Kathleen Lynch and HSE officials about the future and longevity of the unit.

    Those assurances have been denied by HSE officials in recent months.

    However at last night’s meeting, Minister for Communications Denis Naughten read his notes from that meeting with the Minister in 2015 and also a letter he received from the private secretary to then Minister for Health Leo Varadkar, reiterating those commitments.

    Minister Naughten told Midwest News today that he has made representations to the Minister for Health and the HSE in recent days and says he expects that the commitments given in 2015 will be stood by.

  • Retired Garda Sergeant John Hynes who led the 'House of Horrors' child abuse case in Roscommon has paid an emotional tribute to his "right hand man" Detective Garda Colm Horkan.

    Mr Hynes says that Detective Horkan "would leave no stone unturned to get justice for victims" and said his attention to detail in every aspect of the job was "absolutely exemplary".

    He has been telling Midwest News this morning that everybody has a got a real sense of the man that Colm Horkan was over the last 24 hours.

    John Hynes says not only was Colm a former colleague he was also a very close friend over such a long period.

    He has been telling Midwest Radio this morning that Colm was a rock of integrity and used his discretion in abundance.

  • The future of the Rosalie Centre in Castlerea now appears very doubtful. That’s according to Roscommon Fianna Fail deputy Eugene Murphy who was among a group who met with Tony Canavan of the HSE in recent days about the facility.

    A review of the facility that is home to twelve residents with dementia, has been concluded and Mr Canavan told the meeting that it is indicating strongly that the needs of residents are not being met in the Unit as it stands.

    He is now seeking an external view by a medical expert on the reviews findings but there is now a strong indication that the Rosalie unit will be closing down within a few weeks, however, that has not been officially confirmed.

    Deputy Murphy told Midwest News he is astounded and disturbed at the proposal. He says the happiness of the residents should be a top priority and the residents and their families all want the Unit to remain open, but it now looks unlikely.

  • The battle to save the Rosalie Unit in Castlerea is over, as the last two residents are being moved out tomorrow.

    A campaign has been ongoing over the past five years to retain the unit, which accommodates people with dementia and other mental health conditions.

    However, following a HSE decision to close the unit, the number of residents had dwindled to two, and they will both be transferred tomorrow to Áras Mathair Pól in Castlerea, a HSE-run community nursing home.

    24 staff currently employed at the Rosalie Unit are being offered redeployment and other options, and talks are ongoing with the unions involved, but there's some concern that a number of the staff will have to travel long distances to take up alternative positions.

    Liam Walsh in Castlerea has spearheaded the campaign over the past 5 years to save the Rosalie Unit which has been home to his elderly mother Breda for over a decade.

    Today, he told Midwest News that it's sad to see the doors closing tomorrow for the final time....

  • The battle of Castlerea will go on in relation to the Rosalie Unit in Castlerea.

    That's the message that Roscommon Fianna Fail TD Eugene Murphy relayed to Minister Jim Daly recently in the Dáil Chamber.

    Deputy Murphy says people are still very concerned over the future of the centre and believes the HSE sill plan to proceed with the review process which is contrary to the wishes of the families of residents.

    He says all the indications he is getting is that the unit is being wound down.

  • A Roscommon TD has called for an immediate stay to be put on the transfer of residents from the Rosalie Unit in Castlerea, pending a full independent inquiry into the treatment of residents by senior management within the HSE.

    The issue was debated as part of a Fianna Fail Private Members motion on mental health services.

    Roscommon Fianna Fail TD Eugene Murphy says the motion highlighted the need to respect the wishes of service users and their families in facilities such as the Rosalie community psychiatric unit.

    In April, the HSE announced that the Rosalie Unit would cease to function as a community psychiatric unit, and alternative care plans would be put in place for the residents.

    Speaking in the Dail last night, Independent TD Denis Naughten says issues have arisen since 2015 in relation to the carrying out of clinical assessments on residents at the Castlerea unit, and he now wants an independent inquiry into how the residents have been treated since then....

  • 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.