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real feel: 9°C
wind speed: 1 m/s SSE
sunrise: 7:24 am
sunset: 7:20 pm


Death Of James O’Dwyer, Clonoulty, Thurles

It was with great sadness we learned of the passing yesterday, Friday 1st September 2017, of Mr James (Jimmy) O’Dwyer (Scholar), Corbally Lower, Clonoulty, Thurles, Co. Tipperary.

Mr O’Dwyer passed away peacefully at his residence following a long illness.

His passing is most deeply regretted by his loving family; sons John, Jason and Paul; daughters Mary and Breda; brothers Paddy, Michael and Con; sisters Chrissie and Mary; grandchildren; close friend Olive; sons-in-law; daughters-in-law; brothers-in-law; sisters-in-law; nephews; nieces; extended relatives; neighbours and friends.

Funeral Arrangements
The earthly remains of Mr O’Dwyer will repose at Hayes’ Funeral Chapel, Clonoulty, Thurles on Sunday evening next from 5.00pm with removal at 7.30pm to the Church of St John the Baptist, Clonoulty.

Requiem Mass will take place on Monday at 11:30am, followed by interment in the local Clonoulty village cemetery.

Go ndéana Dia trócaire ar a anam dílis.


Death Of Gus Callanan, Ardbawn, Thurles

It is with great sadness we learned of the passing today, Friday 1st September 2017, of Mr Gus (Augustine) Callanan, Rosturra Crescent, Woodview, Limerick City, Co. Limerick and late of Ardbawn, Thurles, Co. Tipperary.

Mr Callanan passed away peacefully while in the loving care of Milford Hospice.

His passing is most deeply regretted by his loving wife Mary; children Luke, Eileen, Aine, Grainne, Cathal and Mairead; daughters-in-law; sons-in-law; grandchildren; brothers; sisters-in-law; brothers-in-law; nieces; nephews; extended relatives and friends.

Funeral Arrangements
The earthly remains of Mr Callanan will repose at Griffin’s Funeral Home, John’s Gate, Limerick, on tomorrow, Saturday September 2nd, from 5.30pm. Removal at 7.00pm to the Church of Christ the King, Caherdavin, Limerick.

Requiem Mass will take place on Sunday morning, September 3rd, at 10.30am, followed by interment afterwards in Killinan Cemetery, Thurles, Co. Tipperary.

Note Please: Family flowers only, however donations, if desired, can be made to Milford Hospice.

Go ndéana Dia trócaire ar a anam dílis.


White Helmets Rep’s To Accept Tipperary Peace Prize

Members of the Syrian Civil Defence (SCD), most often referred to as the ‘White Helmets’; a volunteer organisation that operates in parts of the rebel-controlled Syria and also in Turkey have been awarded the prestigious 2016 Tipperary Peace Prize.

The bulk of the ‘White Helmets’ activity in Syria consists of urban search and rescue in response to bombing, including medical evacuation, and the evacuation of civilians from danger areas. They also are involved in the delivery of essential service e.g. power, water.  To date over 160 ‘White Helmets’ have lost their lives, since the organization’s inception.

Some readers made comments when we published this news last month, claiming shock at the peace conversions decision, due to reports that SCD (White Helmets) held past links with Islamic terrorists.

According to investigative journalists and analysts, Syrian Civil Defence (SCD) are the constant target of a systematic unfounded information warfare campaign, orchestrated by the Russian and Syrian governments; including their other supporters.  Accusations levelled at the organization, accused them of taking sides in the Syrian Civil War and supporting “terrorists”.  The definitive fact-checking organization Snopes.com, however, have concluded that these claims are totally unfounded and multiple journalists have raised serious questions as to the credibility and government connections of certain individuals, who have make these accusations against SCD.

The 2016 award Tipperary Peace Prize will now be given to the Syrian volunteers who have become world-famous for their fearless courage in their efforts to rescue people from bomb-shattered buildings as Syria’s brutal civil war continues.

Persons representing the ‘White Helmets’ are expected to travel in person to Tipperary next Wednesday, to accept the award at a gala ceremony.

Currently the Tipperary Peace prize ranks as Ireland’s most outstanding international award for humanitarian effort.


Thurles Native Caught Up In Hurricane Harvey Devastation

Journalist and Author Tom Ryan Reports:-

An Irish soccer referee in Houston, Texas, yesterday paid tribute to the “caring spirit and generosity” of the people of Houston, in the wake and devastation of Hurricane Harvey, which has caused death and destruction on a huge scale, this week.

Pictured herewith are Pam & Seanie Ryan, attending a ‘Rodeo’ in the populous city of Houston, Texas, in the United States, during happier times.

Thurles native, Mr Seanie Ryan, latter formerly a drummer with various bands in Ireland, including Co. Tipperary’s ‘Tweed’ in the 80’s (later ‘The Paddies’ with top lead vocalist Brendan Ryder, Thurles.) and the ‘Kenny Ryder Superband’, currently resides in ‘Katy’, latter a city in the U.S. state of Texas, within the Houston – Katy -Woodlands – Sugar Land metropolitan area; previously known as “Cane Island”.

As the hurricane hit Katy City and his neighbourhood became flooded, he was directed by a US Coast Guard helicopter to a United States Army Truck, who brought the family to safety to an upland, dry area.

Seanie stated “My wife Pam, and I, carrying our two pups, ‘Rosie’ and ‘Pickles’ in a basket, had to wade through some five feet of water to get to the truck”, adding, “You do it when you mustSubsequently we were offered accommodation in the home of friends who, ironically, were only about two miles away, but actually in a dry area, where we could walk our dogs next day; Crazy.”  Seanie continued.

“One thing I want to get across”, Seanie was anxious to emphasise, “You know people around the world may say different things about the present state of America and our President Donald Trump, but I could not begin to describe the generosity and caring spirit of the wonderful people of Houston, Texas; its Black, white, Asian, Indian, in fact practically the whole of its 2.303 million population, containing all races and creeds. You know it was so wonderful; people, many complete strangers, whom we never met before, were offering us food, accommodation; even an office, if my wife wanted to do her work, indeed any kind of help we wanted was on offer. 

Police helicopters hovered over the neighbourhood all night with floodlights protecting our homes from looters and Coastguard helicopters continued to be involved in rescue operations; rather like the one that came to our assistance.  People just came up to us all the time saying “What can I do for you”.  Now that’s the outstanding spirit of Houston and how it should remain; people were just so outstanding and generous in every way”, said Seanie, a professional Colleges Soccer Referee.

Meanwhile Seanie and wife Pam do not know quite what to expect, when they will eventually be allowed to go back to their home. While thankful to be alive and thoroughly grateful to the great people of Katy city and Houston, they hope they may be lucky in respect of any long term damage caused to their dwelling.

Meanwhile they look forward to November 4th next and the nuptial of their son Kevin, (latter a published writer), and Ms Caroline McKinzie Phillips.

Note: Seanie Ryan, was formerly a native of No.30 Kennedy Park, Thurles, Co. Tipperary, and is brother of Thurles journalist / author Mr Tom Ryan, Rahealty and Mr Pat Ryan, also No.30 Kennedy Park, Thurles, Co. Tipperary.


EPA – Greater Focus Protecting Water Quality Req’d

World Water Week 2017

“A greater focus on protecting our most pristine water environments is needed,” says EPA

Back in late April 2006 the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) received results of analysis on river sediment, taken from the Drish River and the Rossestown River, (both tributaries of the River Suir here in North Tipperary,) from Anglo American Lisheen Mining Ltd, Killoran, Moyne, just 17 minutes drive (14.1 km / 8.76 mls) via the N75  from Thurles, in Co. Tipperary.

Same analytical results related to the monitoring of metals in river sediment. The results received by the EPA showed unsatisfactorily high levels of metals, including lead and zinc, in river sediment. While the water itself was deemed unpolluted, the EPA notified local farmers in the area that farm animals e.g. cattle and sheep, should not be allowed direct access to the affected stretches of the rivers. Dredging or other river works were forbidden at these locations.

Rural dwellers were informed that Anglo American Lisheen Mining Limited, (EPA Licence Reg. No. 550) were working with the EPA’s Office of Environmental Enforcement in relation to re-mediation, to eliminate any further risks of pollution. Only inquisitive individuals from that dreaded ‘green activist  fringe’  were taking notes, but were threatened that up to 1,000 highly paid jobs would be put at risk, should formal environmental protest be publicly registered.

This year 2017 we have, thanks to “environmental radicals” and others of that same ‘green fringe’, now become more acutely aware of our natural environment, and rightly raise objection; demanding caution, when ‘Big Business’ arrives outside our doors using the popular catch phrase ‘Major Job Creation Opportunities’, e.g. Fracking and proposals to allow Irish Cement to burn tyres and other industrial waste at its Mungret, Co Limerick plant, its dioxins and Carbon monoxide fumes to be blown on Ireland’s prevailing wind, which travels from the south and west, to be rained down on our clean, food producing County of Tipperary.

The EPA has today released its latest national assessment of water quality in Ireland. The release coincides with World Water Week, which links scientific understanding with policy-making and positive action toward water-related challenges.
The EPA assessment covers the six-year period between 2010 and 2015 and is the first full, six-year, assessment of the status of our waters under the Water Framework Directive. The assessment concludes that while there has been little overall change in water quality in the six years up to the end of 2015, there has been:-

  • a failure to meet the planned national target of 13 per cent improvement in water status for the six-year period;
  • a failure to prevent deterioration of water status at hundreds of water bodies around the country, which cancels out the improvements in water status at a similar number of water bodies in other parts of the country;
  • welcome progress relating to a continued reduction in the level of seriously polluted waters – only 6 river water bodies were categorised as “Bad” in 2010–2015 compared to 19 in 2007–2009; and
  • a continued and unwelcome decline in the number of our pristine rivers – only 21 sites achieved the highest quality rating from 2013-2015 compared to over 500 sites in the late 1980s.

Overall, 91 per cent of groundwater bodies, 57 per cent of rivers, 46 per cent of lakes, 31 per cent of estuaries and 79 per cent of coastal waters were found to be of good quality under the Water Framework Directive. The Water Framework Directive, other than in exceptional circumstances, requires good water status for all water bodies.

The assessment is available on the EPA website and the accompanying data used in the water quality assessments are available on www.catchments.ie.

More recent localised information on water quality is available on-line through https://www.epa.ie.