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The Joke That Is Irish Water

Water-Protest

Senior staff at “The Shambles” also known in Irish Government circles as “Irish Water” and its parent company Bord Gáis (now called Ervia), can earn annual bonus payments of up to 19% for just doing their job as part of their controversial ‘reward’ scheme, RTÉ has revealed.

It would also appear that these “performance awards” are not just limited to those who actually achieve paid work targets, but also will include staff who get an official “need improvement” rating, the latter, in other words, those who do not meet already paid work targets.

All staff across both companies, excluding CEO and directors reporting to the chief executive, who get a “need improvement” rating can earn an additional bonus 9% payment alongside their mid €90,000 salaries.

Staff who meet all expectations, but who do not exceed this, can earn bonus payments of up to 14% annually.

Managerial grades just below CEO and Director level are paid a bonus of 17% if they“consistently exceed” expectations and 19% each year if they “far exceed” expectations.

Meanwhile householders with a suspected water leak are facing a minimum call-out charge of €188 from Irish water after the first fix, latter which will be free. However a minimum call-out fee of €282, for the first hour, will be charged for those working out of office hours and €141 for any additional hour involved during this same time period.

Ah yes folks, next thing you know is that low-class, basic P.A.Y.E workers on minimum wage and who truly built the economy of this country, will be looking for transport expenses related to their bus, car & train travel, latter incurred daily in their efforts to reach their work place in Dublin, (those of them lucky enough to have a work place that is).

Thurles “Believe None Of What You Hear!”

“Believe none of what you hear, and only half of what you see.” ― Benjamin Franklin.

Ire

How Dublin and our local elected politicians see Tipperary.                         Source: Imgur

If it is reported in a daily newspaper, heard on our radios or viewed on our TV’s then surely it must be true; Dublin has been voted the world’s second friendliest city by readers of the so called travel tourism guidebook ‘Rough Guides.’

This month, the guide book asked its readers to vote for the friendliest city they had visited and Dublin was unveiled as the runner up, taking the number two spot on the planet. For those even remotely interested; the list of top 10 cities are Glasgow, Dublin, Montreal, Liverpool, Copenhagen, Vancouver, Toyko, Dubai, Melbourne and Manchester.

‘Rough Guides’ replied by inviting tourists to; “Spend a weekend enjoying Dublin’s Georgian town-houses, squares and historic churches among some of the friendliest people in the world.”

Welcoming this news, chief executive of Tourism Ireland, Mr Niall Gibbons said that it “chimed” with Dublin’s own research undertaken recently which discovered how truly attractive our ‘Fair City’ is, to our overseas visitors and highlighted the fact that the ‘Irish Welcome’ was one of the country’s main attractions. (How much public funding was wasted on that research result one wonders?)

Mr Gibbons stated: “Again and again, our research shows us that the friendliness of our people is one of our unique selling points. This accolade bestowed by the readers of Rough Guides gives Tourism Ireland another wonderful platform to continue to promote Dublin and the island of Ireland, throughout the world as a ‘must-see’ destination.”

Well to use the supposed riposte of Marilyn “Mandy” Rice-Davies sometime back in the 60’s/70’s, “He would, (say that) wouldn’t he?”  Looks like Dublin will now not need to spend the recently announced €20 million fund to clean up our capital’s image and design that new clever logo for the city. Same was announced last month by a colleague of Mr Gibbons; the former deputy chief of Ryanair, Mr Michael Cawley.  This €20 million funding will no doubt now be divided up countrywide, (in the interests of friendliness) with a substantial amount being instead invested to assist neglected Tourism interests and marketing here in Co Tipperary. (Yes & Pigs Might Fly).

Let us pick, at random, a friendly day in the life of Dublin City; lets pick yesterday the 20th September, 2014 as a typical example.

In one incident: Dublin senior footballer Jonny Cooper was stabbed in the face and neck on Dorset Street, Lower. He was treated at the Mater Hospital and thankfully his injuries are not thought to be life threatening.

In a separate incident: Another male in his 20’s is in a serious condition, following a stabbing in Blanchardstown. This incident took place in Whitestown Park at around 5.15am, with the victim taken to Connolly Hospital.

In another incident: An investigation is being carried out after a shooting took place at around 3.45pm at Belcamp Grove, Priorswood in Dublin. A 32-year-old man was shot by a gunman on a bicycle as he was leaving the garden of his house.

In another incident: RTÉ confirms it is cooperating with Gardaí; later investigating allegations about “creepy and menacing” phone calls made to a “high profile businesswoman” from its Montrose Studio campus in Dublin by someone who was employed on a casual basis.  (Perhaps possibly this situation is the reason why thousand of Irish Water protest marchers in Dublin, latter who feel they are justified in stopping the implementation of a tax on a human right to swell our governments coffers, got no real TV coverage yesterday.)

In another incident: A 31-year-old male was arrested in connection with a car-jacking at knife point in the shopping centre car park at Palmerstown, in Dublin.

In another incident: Dublin Region Homeless Executive director Cathal Morgan has stated that there is a growing trend of families being forced to leave private rented accommodation in Dublin; to move into homeless accommodation. Official figures agree that the number of people sleeping rough on Dublin’s friendly streets has increased by almost 50% since April last.

Finally: How many friendly drug dealing thugs left Dublin yesterday, heading for Co Tipperary and elsewhere, using high powered motor vehicle down Ireland’s motorways. Their intention would have been to behave like the ancient marauding Vikings, to plunder the private dwellings of those living alone in rural areas, latter presently now devoid of any real Garda presence.

In a past publication by that same so called travel tourism guidebook ‘Rough Guides,’ North Tipperary towns receive the following testimonial: “Thurles is of very little interest in itself. Having seen the Rock of Cashel, most people head out of Tipperary for the west, and frankly this isn’t a bad idea – the north of the county has little to distract you.  Templemore is even less interesting than Thurles.”  Of course there is little of interest in Thurles itself, it has all been stolen from our midst to enhance Dublin’s National Museum thus destroying our Tipperary rural tourism economy.

In the words of the brilliant Chinese military strategist Sun Tzu (Around 400BC) and Al Pacino of “Godfather” film fame; “Keep your friends close and your enemies closer.”

Hayes Hotel Goes Under The Hammer

Hayes Hotel, Thurles, Co Tipperary

Hayes Hotel, Thurles, Co Tipperary

Hayes Hotel, situated in Liberty Square here in Thurles and the birthplace of the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA), is finally set to go under the hammer at the next Allsops Space auction; to be held on September 16th 2014.

The Allsop Space Catalogue (Lot No 82) lists the sale as follows:-
Hayes Hotel is an historic 30 bedroom hotel comprising a reception, Cusack’s Bar, lounge bar, coffee dock, two nightclubs, together with 30 bedrooms extends to approximately 1,949.9 sq. m (19,901 sq. ft) in a town centre location and holding a 7 day publican’s licence

The premises are situated on a site extending to approximately 0.44 hectares (1.08 acres). The property is arranged over ground with two upper floors to provide a hotel. The adjoining building comprises a former shop and seven bedrooms.

The property has not been internally inspected or measured by Allsop Space and viewing times, as  this article goes to print have not as yet been confirmed. The premises are being offered with vacant possession and with a guideline of just €450,000 – €500,000.

I don’t know about you, our regular readers, but it would appear rather peculiar to me, that as Failte Ireland, using taxpayers funding, set about spending some €20m to design a new logo for Dublin city, (Thus making it a more attractive city for women tourists no less), that a building bearing such important national historic importance is being completely cast aside, without a threatened revolt by lovers of our national games. (Michael Cusack and Maurice Davin must be turning in their graves.)

Still I suppose someone will eventually purchase this piece of our nation’s history and could then move its front facade to Dublin’s National Museum, in keeping with every other historical artefact stolen from Co. Tipperary and held in our nation’s capital city in recent years.

Liberty Square, Thurles Moves Closer To A Revamp

Design consultants URS Ireland, updating the final plans for the proposed revamp of Liberty Square here in Thurles, were in attendance yesterday at the Thurles -Templemore Municipal District meeting, held in the ‘Old Library’ building, situated on Castle Avenue.

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A number of final pre-submission draft drawings were on the table for final discussion at the meeting, latter which will now become part of the overall draft plan of the area, based on previous public consultation processes held earlier over the past year.

These Draft Thurles Design Plans costing some €3,000,000 will now provide for the removal of some parking facilities in the town’s central median, in favour of two off-street car parks recently acquired, providing for some one hundred extra parking spaces. However some enlarged on-street parallel parking is likely to remain with the provision of widened footpaths and the possible introduction of two extra courtesy pedestrian crossings.

From my own humble point of view this is welcome news; after all from a tourism prospective, for the past 14 years, world tourist publications have been less than complimentary with regard to our small local urban community.

Lonely Planet Ireland with Head Offices in America & Australia in a defamatory statement claim; “Thurles (Durlas) is a large market town 22km north of Cashel which was founded by the Butlers in the 13th Century.  Little of note has been built there since and the town square is little more than an ugly car park.”   This same publication, in 2007, stated; “The centre of Thurles town is the long and spacious Liberty Square. It is rather traffic bound, but has a lively air.”

Ireland : A Rough Guide published by Rough Guides Ltd, 62-70 Shorts Gardens, London and distributed by the Penguin Group state; ” Thurles is of very little interest in itself .” “Having seen the Rock of Cashel, most people head out of Tipperary for the west, and frankly this isn’t a bad idea – the north of the county has little to distract you.”  Also they offer this little added piece of  libel; “Templemore is even less interesting than Thurles.”

The final plans should be ready to go on display under Part 8 Planning Process later this year and once finally agreed same will then go to tender for construction.
Thurles – Templemore District Director Mr Matt Shortt, in highlighting this project, has stated that the overall aim of this new revamp will be to aid the currently restricted traffic flow, while also greatly improving conditions for shopping pedestrians.

Yes of course there will be many problems as plans are unveiled and as our Local Authority attempt to construct what can be reasonably described as a new exciting public face to Liberty Square. Such, after all, is inevitable when local residents and businesses people are invited to participate in a final decision-making process. We reside in an age where “Personal Greed and Me-ism” flourishes in abundance, so do let’s try to keep our thoughts positive, accepting safe democratic decisions and keeping in mind that it is impossible for everyone to fully agree on all finalised new proposals.

After all and in reality there is no such thing as a problem; if a problem occurs and there is a solution – there is no problem; if a problem occurs and there is no solution – this can be categorised as a ‘fact of life,’ so let’s continue with it until an alternative resolution can be calmly worked out.

One thought is common in the minds of all Thurles people presently; Liberty Square badly needs a face lift, so let’s speed up this positive chance for change, where possible.

Hidden Tipperary Aware Of Current Urban Tourism Greed

Minister Phil Hogan, what in the name of God have you started?

The deadline of September 30th 2014, given to County Councils by the Revenue Commissioners to vary property tax charges by 15%, at the behest of the Revenue Commissioners, has given the search for ‘Urban/Rural Funding Equalisation Debate’ a now much more added urgency.

Publicity shy Dublin Labour TD Kevin Humphreys; yes him who recently confronted that unfortunate rat, as it scurrying across the polished floors of Leinster House, warns he will become ‘rebellious’ (God forbid Kevin, control yourself, you will have us all protesting) if central funds for local authorities are diverted from councils in his thriving Capital City of Dublin, to be spent in “Hillbilly Country”, latter also referred to in EU dispatches, (strictly in the interest of political correctness you understand) as “Rural Ireland.”

Mr Humphreys is seriously losing sleep about critically important local issues in Dublin, now much in need of urgent funding. It appears from press reports that the government could redirect funds to rural, less well populated areas in our State; due to the excessive property tax yields in Dublin. This government decision could see Mr Humphreys turn savage, especially since these rural voters have been less than sympathetic to Labour Party policies, in recent local elections.

Dublin’s Moving Statues

I myself, a well known rural Co Tipperary blow-in, can partially understand where Humphreys ( Latter no relation to character in satirical British sitcom “Yes Minister”) is coming from, particularly in relation to the necessary funding of items like the “Moving Statues” of Dublin.  Please allow me to further elaborate.

Viscount_Gough

Statues of Viscount Gough & Molly Malone

I believe it was Jury’s Hotel, Dublin that financed the statue of the fictional 17th century, third generation, double jobbing,  fishmonger (by day) and part-time prostitute (by night) “Molly Malone.”   Molly Malone, of that well-known ballad of the same name has become the most recent of Dublin’s moving statue; “shifted” (Please interpret latter word using a biblical understanding) from the bottom of Grafton Street to be possibly relocated temporarily on Andrew Street.

The statue affectionately known by Dublin natives as “The Tart with the Cart”, “The Dish with the Fish”, “The Trollop with the Scallops” and “The Dolly with the Trolley”, has just cost the Irish tax payer €50,000 for its recent removal, it’s cleaning, repairs etc.. Happily the €50,000 spent should see visitors not noticing  any change in her newly welded appearance when she once again appears back ‘on the town’ at her new temporary location outside the tourist office now established in the former St Andrew’s Church on nearby Suffolk Street.

This statue will of course incur further costs later,  pending the end of Luas works in 2017, when she will be again relocated to her former ‘beat’ on Grafton Street, slightly north of her more recent location.

The repairs to the Molly Malone statue were necessary, because of cracks brought about by tourists sitting on her.  How do I know this?  Take a look at the tourism facts & figures for the Top Ten free attractions in Ireland for 2013.

Tourism Facts

Note that No 1. on the list of Tourism attractions was The National Gallery of Ireland, Dublin (641,572), followed by No 2. The National Botanic Gardens, Dublin (550,000), No 3. Farmleigh House, Dublin (435,476), No 4. National Museum of Ireland, Kildare Street, Dublin (404,230), No 5. Newbridge Silverware, Kildare (350,000), No 6. Science Gallery, Trinity College Dublin (339,264), No 7. National Museum of Ireland, Natural History, Dublin (284,323), No 8. The National Library of Ireland, Dublin (260,152), No 9. National Museum of Ireland, Collins Barracks, Dublin (251,226) and finally No 10. Chester Beatty Library Dublin (250,659) and all but one have got the same thing in common.

It is also interesting to note the tourism facts & figures for five of the top ten paid-for attractions in 2013, namely:- The Guinness, Storehouse, Dublin (1,157,090), National Aquatic Centre, Dublin (858,031), Book of Kells, Dublin, (588,723), St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Dublin (410,000) and Kilmainham Gaol, Dublin (326,207)  have also all got one thing in common.

So have you spotted how Molly got cracked? Yes correct, fourteen out of the fifteen top Irish Tourist attractions hold a Dublin City address. These over abundant tourists now visiting Dublin are no better than street vandals; sitting as they do under Molly’s ample semi-bared blossoms, to have their photographs taken. These unprofitable tourists have being encouraged to visit Dublin, through the spending of millions of Euro by Fáilte Ireland, attracting them only to Dublin city over the last five years, to the detriment of unfunded rural Ireland and Co Tipperary in particular.

Continue reading Hidden Tipperary Aware Of Current Urban Tourism Greed

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