• Businesses in the Erris region are not happy with a 4% increase in their commercial rates this year, with local business people arguing that they are not getting value for their money from Mayo County Council.

    Chairperson of Erris Chamber Damien Langan says that, over the past number of years, rates have increased by 20% and he says Erris is not seeing the return locally.

    Business people in the area met last week to express their concerns, and the potential impact of another rates increase on the survival of a number of local enterprises.

    The group will meet again next week to decide what they will do about the 2020 rates charges, and Damien Langan says this could be the last straw for some businesses in the area...

  • An Erris Councillor has asked why it is taking An Bord Pleanala so long to make a decision about works on a bridge on the R312 road from Castlebar to Erris.

    Fine Gael Cllr Gerry Coyle raised the matter of the bridge at Glenisland under the manager’s report at a recent meeting of Mayo County Council.

    Funding of €500,000 has been allocated for works to take place on the narrow bridge, but An Bord Pleanala has requested further information on the natura impact statement.

    Cllr Coyle says the additional information was submitted to An Bord Pleanala at the end of July but no decision has been issued.

    He says this road is badly in need of repair works and flooding has already caused issues this winter.

    Cllr Coyle says this particular job is a simple one, once the go ahead is given for it but it is being held up by red tape.

  • An Erris councillor says he is baffled and  bemused on hearing that work on the construction of a seawall along the Mullet Peninsula cannot start because it may interfere with wintering birds.

    Councillors approved a plan by Mayo County Council to carry out renovation works to the Bundola seawall along the R313 at last September's Westport/Belmullet Municipal Meeting.

    The seawall was damaged in recent storms and the road is prone to flooding.

    The proposed renovations will see the raising of the existing wall along with the construction of a new concrete render on the seawall.

    At a recent municipal meeting local Fine Gael Cllr. Gerry Coyle requested an update on the project and was told that the area was home to wintering birds which meant they cannot carry out the work in the winter.

    Cllr. Coyle has been outlining his frustration with the system to Midwest News.

  • It’s not acceptable that Erris contributes so significantly to the rates collected annually by Mayo County Council, yet the area fails to get a fair share of spending by the local authority in return. That’s the view expressed by Erris based Fine Gael councillor Gerry Coyle at yesterday’s West Mayo Municipal District meeting.

    The councillor says the Gas terminal in Ballinaboy now pays in excess of 3 million euro a year in rates to the local authority and the windfarms at Bellacorrick are ready to come on stream, yet he argues, the people affected most are not seeing any return for this new development.

    He told Midwest News that he has no problem with the entire county benefiting from rates collected county wide, but he says Erris is not getting a fair slice of the cake, in his opinion.

  • There was a packed meeting in Bangor last night to discuss the roll out of broadband in the region.

    Details of the long awaited National Broadband Plan were to be published last week, but it now looks like next week before they are available.

    Stephen Carrolan, the Broadband Manager with Mayo county Council, addressed last night’s gathering.

    Local Sinn Fein councillor Teresa Whelan says there is an urgency in the rollout of the National Broadband Plan, in places like Erris.

  • An Erris homeowner whose house is severely affected by pyrite feels announcement of pilot remediation project is nothing short of a joke.

    Yesterday it was announced on Evening Edition that the Housing Minister Eoghan Murphy has given the go-ahead for a pilot remediation project in North Mayo, as part of ongoing efforts to try and find a solution to the issue of pyrite in concrete blocks in a number of Mayo homes.

    Michael Healy whose house in Corclough has been among the worst cases of pyrite was told previously that the whole house has to be demolished.

    Mr. Healy says yesterday’s announcement of an experimental pilot project which will see the outer leaf removed of a house and replaced is ten steps backwards.

  • The father of an Erris woman who won the Melbourne Women’s Marathon on Saturday says he and her family are very proud of her. Eddie Divers of Corclough West, Belmullet says they are all on cloud nine since the race, and are now looking forward to her taking part in the Olympics in Tokyo in 2020.

    41 year old Sinead Diver, is now resident in Australia, and she romped home first in the Melbourne Marathon on Saturday running 2:25:19, a course record.

    She knocked over six seconds off her personal best and took home a total winning jackpot in the region of $40,000 Australian dollars.

    Catherina McKiernan is the only Irish woman to have bettered Sinead's time in a marathon.

    Sinead's parents, Eddie and Bridie, and members of her family managed to watche her run on Saturday night in the family home via the internet.

    Eddie spoke to Midwest News today about the excitement and delight locally at Sinead’s success

  • A unique new bridge will link the Great Western Greenway to the Erris region for the first time.

    Funding of €100,000 was announced yesterday for the design of the bridge which will link Ballycroy to Mount Jubilee.

    This was part of the €800,000 announced by the Minister for Rural & Community Development Michael Ring for four walking and cycling trails in Co Mayo.

    €200,000 has been allocated for the Great Western Greenway at Kilmeena & Turlough, €200,000 also for the Achill Greenway, €200,000 for the Bowers Walk in Ballinrobe, and the final €200,000 is divided between the Bangor Trail and the Erris Access Bridge.

    Erris-based Councillor Gerry Coyle has welcomed the development of this unique bridge that will link the Great Western Greenway with Erris...

  • A Mayo Fianna Fail TD has accused the Health Minister of ignoring the impending GP crisis in rural areas.

    Deputy Dara Calleary has been informed by the HSE that the GP in Glenamoy Health Centre has resigned and no replacement has been found.

    Deputy Calleary told Midwest News today that this is a very serious situation, which will leave only three GPs in the entire Erris area. He says it is a huge geographical distance for three GPs to cover and will increase the pressure not only on the existing GP service, but also the whole Erris community.

    The latest Irish Medical Organisation data predicts that 41% of GPs in Mayo will retire over the next five to seven years. Deputy Calleary says despite this, Government appearls to have no plan to tackle this.

    In Glenamoy the HSE has confirmed that the position was advertised in the public domain but unfortunately no applications were received.

    Discussions are ongoing with the existing GP to ascertain if there is any possibility of him remaining in Glenamoy.

    Deputy Calleary says this is an issue that needs to be dealt with as soon as possible.

  • Erris native Ronan Murray has signed for Drogheda United.

    The 29-year-old signs for the Louth outfit from Sligo Rovers.

    The striker is the First Division champions' latest signing ahead of their Premier Division mission this year.

    Drogs boss Tim Clancy had already snapped up experienced campaigners Dane Massey, Gary Deegan and Dinny Corcoran.

    Drogheda United's SSE Airtricity Premier Division campaign commences on Friday, March 19, at home to Waterford FC.

  • A Mayo Senator has asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs to address the urgent need for a family resource centre in Erris.

    Sinn Fein Senator Rose Conway-Walsh says the Minister needs to recognise the unique factors present in Erris. She says due to the poor standards of the roads and the dire lack of public service, the population of Erris cannot rely on essential services making their way into the area.

    The Senator says it is not feasible for support services such as those provided for by Tusla through Family Resource Centres to travel in and out of Erris to meet individuals and families.

    She says Tusla and HSE staff spending half their day travelling is not a best use of their time and is not conductive to providing the quality of support service to individuals and families. Senator Conway-Walsh says the reality is that families and individuals are being deprived of life saving and life changing supports and services available to people living in other areas.

    She says a FRC located in Erris would facilitate an early intervention and prevention approach and would assist in preventing cases escalating to social work teams which are already overstretched.

  • People cannot continue to be made strangers on their own land.

    That's according to Erris-based FG Councillor Gerry Coyle, who says that's what's happening at present due to planning regulations in the Mayo County Development Plan.

    Councillor Coyle is concerned that returning emigrants cannot get planning permission to build on their family land in Mayo, and says smaller villages and townlands will be wiped out unless planning regulations are eased.

    The Mayo County Development Plan is currently being reviewed, and Councillor Coyle in insisting that people, rather than flora and fauna, should be prioritised.

    He raised the matter at this week's meeting of the West Mayo Municipal District

  • There is a public meeting tonight (Monday) in the Broadhaven Bay Hotel in Belmullet regarding the recent storm damage in Erris caused by Storm Callum.

    The meeting gets underway this evening at 7pm.

  • Some Three customers in the Erris area of North Mayo remain without a phone service for ten days now.

    The service went down the weekend before last in stormy conditions.

    A spokesperson for Three told Midwest News last Tuesday, that a mast had been damaged in the storm and the service would be restored by the next day (Wednesday last ) but that has not happened for a number of customers in the area, including elderly people awaiting phone-calls from their GPs re Covid Vaccination appointments.

    Midwest News contacted Three again this afternoon to get an update on the situation and we are awaiting a response.

  • Three coverage in the Erris area is down since Saturday, and the company told Midwest News today that it may be tomorrow, (Wed) before the full service is restored.

    The company confirmed that due to high winds over the weekend, a mast is down in the Belmullet/Erris area and a spokesperson for Three says they are working to get services resumed “as quickly as we can for our customers, however, due to continued strong winds it may be tomorrow before full service is restored.

    Three says it “sincerely apologises for any inconvenience caused to our customers”

    Listeners to Midwest News say that the service went down on Saturday last and when they complained to the company on Saturday they were informed that it would be restored “shortly”.

    Some listeners say it is a particularly stressful time for people in the area to be without a phone, as they are also without electricity today due to last night’s gale force winds.

    In addition many elderly people are waiting anxiously to hear from their GPs regarding the rollout of the Covid vaccine this week.

    Separately, Atlantic Computers a company that provides wireless and fibre broadband in Erris says its service was impacted by the storm on Saturday, but it managed to restore its service to 95 percent of customers by Saturday evening.

    It has worked since to restore the service to the last 5 percent of customers and that it believes has now been achieved. A spokesperson for Atlantic Computers says if any customer remains without the service in Erris then please contact the company directly at 097 82255.






  • The wrecked hull of a fishing boat, which capsized off the north Mayo coast last month claiming the life of a fisherman, has been found washed up on a Scottish island.

    The tragedy on 10th April last claimed the life of 57-year old John Healy, a father of three from Gorthmelia, Barnatra, while two men fishing with him survived.

    The three men had been crab fishing about 30km northwest off Eagle Island when their catamaran, the Aisling Patrick, suddenly capsized.

    They managed to launch a life-raft and scramble aboard after transmitting a Mayday radio distress call.

    The life-raft was later found by the crew of the Sligo-based Irish Coast Guard helicopter after the men set off distress flares.

    All three were airlifted from the scene, but John Healy was later pronounced dead in hospital.

    Mr Healy, from Gorthmelia, Barnatra and formerly from Glencullen Bridge, Bangor Erris is survived by his wife Norah, three sons, and extended family.

    The other two fishermen, both in their 20’s, survived the incident.

    The Irish Independent reports today that the wrecked hull of the Aisling Patrick has been found washed ashore on one of the Outer Hebrides islands in Scotland.

    The local Coast Guard team secured the wreckage, to ensure its doesn’t drift back out to sea and become a danger to shipping.

    The Marine Casualty Investigation Board here has been informed of the find.

    It’s not yet confirmed whether the wreckage will be returned to Ireland for examination.