• There's a setback for the ambitious Velo Rail project planned for Kiltimagh.

    An Bord Pleanala has ruled that the plan by Mayo County Council to develop the old railway line into a tourist amenity with pedal-powered carriages is NOT exempt from planning permission.

    However, it also ruled that work which has already been done to facilitate the change of use of the railway line to a Velo Rail does not require planning permission.

    Government funding of over €300,000 from Minister Michael Ring's  Department of Rural and Community Development has been allocated towards the Velo Rail project, which is being developed by Kiltimagh IRD.

    It's based on similar projects in France, and Kiltimagh IRD believe it could attract 30,000 visitors per year.

    Work has been underway on the tourism project for the past two years, in terms of clearing and preparing the site along the old Claremorris to Collooney rail line.

    However, the Western Rail Trail Campaign wants to see the railway line between Athenry and Collooney developed as a greenway.

    The campaign, led by Brendan Quinn, referred the Velo Rail project in Kiltimagh to An Bord Pleanala.

    In a statement to Midwest News, Mr Quinn said that - despite having attracted almost half a million euro in Government funding - the velo rail project is now effectively back at the starting blocks, and must now be the subject of a planning process, which will allow local concerns to be addressed.

    Responding to An Bord Pleanala's ruling that the project is not exempt from planning permission, Mayo County Council said the decision gives clarity , and they're looking forward to advancing the project through the planning process as soon as is reasonably practicable.

    The council said they're pleased that the Board has confirmed that works completed to date on the project are exempted from planning.

  • An Post has confirmed a number of changes taking place at post offices across Co Mayo - as part of the transformation of the national post office network.

    This includes the opening of a new post office in Belmullet next Monday.


     A number of post offices are on the move across Co Mayo, as An Post continues its plan of closing some offices and moving them into nearby business premises.

    A new post office will open in Belmullet next Monday 25th February.

    The new office will be co-located in the Centra store on Main Street - a short distance from the old post office - and the postmaster is Joseph Cuffe - proprietor of the Centra store.

    On the same day, 5 postal staff in Belmullet, 3 in Glenamoy and one each in Geesala, Carrowteigue and Bangor Erris will relocate to Barnatra, where they will operate from a new mail hub for the area.

    An Post says this will not affect local mail services.

    Also, in the coming months, the post office in Swinford is to be located at Kennedy's Spar, while in Kiltimagh, the post office will co-locate with Londis on Main Street.

    And in Ballyhaunis, An Post has readvertised the contract to provide post office services.

    Midwest News understands a local business has turned down the opportunity, and it's now open for applications.

    The company says the Ballyhaunis Post Office will remain at its current location until that process is complete.

  • Blake Forkan from Killtimagh will attempt to make the final cut for the Underdogs team that will play All Ireland Champions, Dublin.

    Blake is originally from Killtimagh but now plays his football with St. Eunan's in Letterkenny. He will be hoping to hold on to the position of goalkeeper.

    Supermac's has announced that it will sponsor Underdogs on TG4.

    The GAA show returned to screens recently after a 10-year absence and the producers are on the lookout for the next big stars.

    Players are put through their paces on the show by 3 All Ireland winning players - Galway's Ray Silke, Kerry's Paul Galvin and Cork's Valerie Mulcahy.

    This series follows unknown players, as they are trained and mentored by the coaches before they face the All Ireland Champions, Dublin, in October.

    The previous series of Underdogs was responsible for launching many present inter-county stars and All-Ireland winners' careers including Kerry's Kieran Donaghy and Cork's Pearse O'Neill.

  • The speed limit on the main road between Kiltimagh and Bohola should immediately be raised to 100kmh. That's the view of Fianna Fail councillor John Caulfield. He claims the state is frequently using speed cameras  on the 80kmh good stretch of road and using it as a cash cow, imposing penalties on ordinary people driving to work, and he has described it as "shooting fish in a barrel".

    Cllr Caulfield raised the matter at this week's Claremorris Municipal District Meeting and he argued that tax payers money had been used to upgrade this road and now the same taxpayers end up getting speed fines for using it at a reasonable speed, considering the standard of the road.

  • Controversy has arisen over an allocation of €118,000 euro last December by Minister Michael Ring to a Kiltimagh tourism development project.

    The decision by the Minister for Rural & Community Affairs to allocate the funding to the Velo-Rail project, pioneered by Kiltimagh Tourism and IRD with support from Mayo County Council, was highlighted in the Sunday Times, and the Mail on Sunday at the weekend.

    The funding at the end of last year was a direct follow-on from an allocation of €180,000 by Minister Ring for the project under the 2016 Rural Recreation Scheme.

     The Velo-Rail project is being developed on a stretch of the old railway line that runs from Claremorris to Collooney.

    It’s planned to develop 12 kilometres of the track, mainly on the Claremorris side of Kiltimagh,  as well as a shorter stretch on the Swinford side. The last official trains ran on this line back in the 1970s.

    Velo-Rail is an outdoor recreational activity using small rail-mounted pedal-propelled vehicles to move along a disused railway line.

    The article in the Sunday newspapers states that Minister Ring allocated almost €120,000 to a project in his constituency -  despite warnings from civil servants that it could set “problematic precedents”.

    One official said the project appeared to have the least merit of four proposals that were seeking extra funding.

    The CEO of Kiltimagh IRD Joe Kelly says the Velo-Rail project, which should be completed later this year or early in 2019, will be a unique tourism attraction, and could bring up to 30,000 people to the area as well as creating local jobs.

    He says this is the first velo-rail project to be developed in Ireland or the UK, and has praised Minister Ring for recognising its potential benefits.


  • The cost to parents when school buildings are used as polling stations has been highlighted by a Kiltimagh mother to Mayo County Council.

    Aine Carr says she believes the local authority could find alternative venues in Kiltimagh on election days instead of the local primary school, forcing working parents to find childcare or take a day off work.

    She says she has no childcare available to her on days that the school closes for elections or referenda  and there are many parents in a similar situation.

    She suggests a number of suitable alternative venues in Kiltimagh including the Town Hall Theatre, Community Centre or Parish Centre

  • Foxford-based FG Councillor Neil Cruise is calling on Mayo County Council to immediately publish the Part 8 planning required to get the Velo Rail project underway in Kiltimagh.

    The project, which is the first of its kind in Ireland, will involve the self-propelling of carriages on a 12 km section of the old railway track running from Kiltimagh towards both Claremorris and Swinford.

    It's estimated the Velo Rail could attract over 30,000 visitors each year to the area.

    Councillor Cruise says the project will be a major tourism attraction, and he's urging Mayo County Council to proceed with the publication of the Part 8 planning required for change of use of the track.

    This will then go for public consultation before coming back before Councillors - first at  Municipal District level, and will then go before a full meeting of the local authority.



  • The death has occurred of Enda Cleary from Kiltimagh.

    Enda Cleary was synonymous with the motor trade for many years taking over from his father Andy who set up Cleary’s Motors in Kiltimagh.

    Enda who was 94 is predeceased by his wife Helen, and is sadly missed by his children Hilary, Paul, Catherine, Susan, Brian and extended family.

    He will be Reposing at his home on James Street this evening from 6.30 until 8 o’clock for family and close friends only, due to current Covid-19 restrictions and guidelines.

    Funeral Mass will take place at 3 o’clock on Saturday in The Church of the Holy Family, Kiltimagh with burial afterwards in Kilkinure Cemetery.

  • Kiltimagh and Claremorris fire brigades attended a bog fire at Ballyglass near Kiltimagh at the weekend.

    The fire services were alerted just before 5pm on Sunday evening and were in attendance until the fire was extinguished shortly after 1am yesterday (Monday) morning.

    Personnel from Coillte assisted, and a helicopter was deployed to assist in the operations. A large area of gorse and bog was burned. There was extensive forestry close by but the fire did not reach it.

    Mayo Fire Services are again reminding the public that it is illegal to burn land during the nesting & breeding season for birds & wildlife (Mar 1st-Aug 31st) and is appealling to all to act responsibly & avoid illegal burning that may place an extra burden on our emergency services, particularly during the COVID-19 crisis.



  • Four people were taken to hospital following a two-car collision on the main Bohola to Kiltimagh Road earlier today.

    The collision occurred around two miles the Kiltimagh side of Bohola.

    Four people were taken to hospital with minor injuries.

    The road, which was reduced to one lane earlier, has now fully reopened.


  • Gardai in Claremorris are investigating the theft of a car from the Kiltimagh area in the early hours of Sunday morning.

    The Black Toyota Avensis was parked at a house on the Bohola road, Kiltimagh when it was taken some time after  1am.

    The vehicle’s registration is 02 G 7908.

    Anyone who may have noticed any suspicious activity in the area or may have seen the car  is asked to contact Claremorris garda station at 094 9371222

  • Gardai have launched an appeal for information as the first anniversary of the death of Joe Deacy approaches.

    Joe, who was 21-years old, was found seriously injured in Gorthnasillagh, Swinford on Saturday August 12th last year by a passing cyclist.

    Mr Deacy, a native of St Alban’s in the UK, was transferred to Mayo University Hospital and then to Beaumont Hospital Dublin, where he died on August 13th.

    Gardai have established that Joe left Kiltimagh town at approximately 1.30am on August 12th.

    Gardai are again appealing to people from the local community who have seen Joe between 1.30am and 6.45am on Saturday August 12th 2017 to come forward to assist Gardai with any information.

    Crimestoppers is offering a substantial reward for information which may lead to the apprehension of the person or persons responsible for Joe’s death.

    Crimestoppers can be contacted on 1800 25 00 25, the Garda Confidential Line on 1800 666 111 or the incident room at Claremorris Garda Station on 094-93-72080.

    Superintendent Tom Calvey told Midwest News that they are appealing for anyone with information to contact them.

  • Ireland are competing in international basketball for the first time this summer, with the men’s and women’s U17’s back in action this week, looking to reach a major finals.

    They're taking part in the European Qualifiers for FIBA U17 Skills Challenge 2020 and FIBA U17 Women’s Skills Challenge at the National Basketball Arena on Thursday and Friday.

    Two sides from the 10 teams competing in European qualifying will reach next week’s finals, playing against the world’s best.

    Ireland's U17 men are in Group A, alongside Poland, Israel, Belarus and Slovakia. Their first match-up is against Israel on Thursday.

    Head coach Paul Kelleher has selected a five-person squad including Galway’s Ben Burke.

    The Irish U17 women also start their campaign against Israel, followed by matches against Belarus, Poland and Gibraltar in Group A. 

    The Irish U17 women's head coach Karl Kilbride has named a nine-person squad for the FIBA U17 Women’s Skills Challenge. Hazel Finn from Kiltimagh, who has 39 international caps at U16 level and was Ireland’s top scorer at the last two FIBA U16 European Championships, will be among the panel.

    Her Maree team mate Kara McCleane (23 U16 caps) along with Sarah Hickey (19 U16 caps) and Paris McCarthy (18 U16 caps) also represented Ireland at last year’s FIBA U16 European Championship. The squad also includes Shannon Cunningham, Maria Kealy, Rebecca Hynes, Aisling Marmion and Emily O’Dwyer.

    Ireland must finish in the top-2 in their group to reach the European qualifier finals, which will take place on Sunday 16th. The winner of Group A will play the runner-up from Group B and vice-versa. The winners of those two qualifying finals will compete in the FIBA U17 Skills Challenge 2020.

  • The Ireland U16 women lost out to Great Britain in a crucial pool game at the European Championships in Sofia yesterday.

    Kiltimagh’s Hazel Finn is the captain of the young Irish team and will hope to repeat the great displays of her older sister Dayna in the U20 championships earlier in the month.

    She definitely showed prowess on the courts akin to her sister in defeat, scoring 22 out of Ireland’s 54 points.

    Ireland face Belarus today at 4:15pm Irish time in a must-win clash to determine their final group placing.

    You can watch the match online across FIBA’s social media.

  • There is increasing concern among passengers who regularly use Route 52 Bus Eireann service that connects Ballina to Galway city that the service is now under threat.

    People in the areas of Swinford and Kiltimagh look set to be directly affected but so too will patients from north Mayo trying to attend hospital appointments in Galway.

    Bus Eireann is remaining tight lipped over its plans for the route.

    Listeners to Midwest News first expressed concerns about the service two months ago, and Midwest News contacted Bus Eireann who responded at that time, stating that the route is under review.

    Following further concerns about its future expressed by Midwest News listeners this week, we again sought a response from Bus Eireann.

    The brief response again reads:

     Bus Éireann has received a revised licence for Route 52 from the National Transport Authority (NTA), which it is currently reviewing.

    The company is working with the NTA – who have responsibility for the public transport network – on other proposals, to ensure connectivity remains in place.

    We have asked Bus Eireann when the review will be completed and we are awaiting a response.

  • The local community in Kiltimagh has successfully raised €150,000 as a local contribution, for an ambitious Amenity Park project in the town.


    A 6-acre site just off the town's Main Street has been purchased with the money raised, and members of the local committee addressed this week's meeting of the Claremorris / Swinford Municipal District to outline their plans from here.

    Prior to last May's local elections, Kiltimagh was part of the Castlebar Municipal District.


    The committee's first priority now is to secure public funding, to put in place a 5km circular walking / running route in the newly-purchased amenity park site.

    Áine Carr of the Kiltimagh Amenity Park Group has been telling Midwest Radio's News about their plans

  • Hazel Finn from Kiltimagh is an Irish Basketball International and has been selected to play for Ireland in the upcoming European Championships in Austria in 2021.

    Hazel captained Ireland in last year's U16 European Championships.

    She joined Michael D. McAndrew on Sunday Sport this afternoon.


  • A Mayo Councillor is seeking funding for a footpath from Kiltimagh out to Kilkinure Cemetery.

    FG Councillor Neil Cruise says a new footpath should run to the cemetery and onto Oxford Cross on the Balla Road, which would open up a number of looped walks in the area.

    He has applied under the Town & Village Renewal scheme for funding for this project, and says he hopes his application is successful, as this would form part of the Greenway strategy for the county.

  • A Mayo DJ has won two national awards.

    Tommy Elliott from Kiltimagh scooped the Best Wedding DJ 2018 and Wedding Entertainer of the Year 2018 at the weekend.

    Tommy captured the Wedding Entertainer of the Year at the Wedding Journal Online Awards on Sunday evening in Dublin, while he was named Best Wedding DJ 2018 at the online awards on Monday.

  • U16 League Division 1 Cup Final 
    Castlebar Mitchels 3-10 
    Ballina Stephenites 0-07 

    Division 3 Cup Final 
    Kiltimagh 4-13
    Ballinrobe 2-11