Saturday, May 31, 2008

SFYC!

I thought I'd occasionally highlight older posts that people might have missed that are interesting! So here's a collage of the pics from the 1984 No Name Club!

See all of the original postings here:
http://donegalfriends.blogspot.com/search/label/sfyc

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Car Accidents! Updated.

2 3 bad car accidents in recent days.

The first was up around Gweedore, where 2 visitors from Antrim were knocked down and killed whilst out walking:
http://www.rte.ie/news/2008/0525/donegal.html
The mother and daughter were out walking at Meenacuing, Gweedore, near An Chúirt hotel at around 8.30pm last night when they were struck by a car which had apparently gone out of control.

The other was on the Letterkenny to Ballybofey road involving the bus from Derry to Donegal Town and a car. The car driver was killed, but no-one on the bus was seriously injured:
http://www.rte.ie/news/2008/0526/rta.html?rss
A man has died following a collision on the N13 Letterkenny to Ballybofey road in Co Donegal this afternoon.

Two vehicles were involved in the collision at about 4.30pm, a Volkswagen Passat and a Bus Éireann bus on a regular run from Derry to Donegal Town.

The Passat was travelling from Ballybofey to Letterkenny and the bus was travelling in the opposite direction.

Following the collision the bus, which was fitted with seatbelts, turned over on its side in a field.

The driver of the car, a 34-year-old Donegal man, was pronounced dead at Letterkenny General Hospital ...

Update: A picture of the aftermath of the accident from jameswhorriskey

Donegal Bus Fatality !

And another near Falcarragh, where a 70 old woman was killed in a 2 car accident:
http://www.rte.ie/news/2008/0527/rta.html?rss
A woman in her 70s has been killed in a road collision in Co Donegal this evening.

The woman was a passenger in one of the cars that collided at Dún Lúiche, Falcarragh, Co Donegal shortly before 5pm.

The driver of one of cars, a man in his 70s, the female driver of the other car and two passengers have been taken to hospital in Letterkenny ...

Monday, May 26, 2008

More pics of the Fire in the Bluestacks!

And some more pics of the fire that ravished the Bluestacks earlier this month.
Firemen in the Bluestacks
Bluestackfire7
Originally uploaded by mallymcg

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Multi-denominational school?

Multi-denominational school for South Donegal? If your interested they'll be a meeting about it on the 29th of May, 2008:
http://www.oceanfm.ie/onair/donegalnews.php?articleid=000002916
South Donegal could be poised to see the establishment of an multi-denominational, co-educational school in the near future.

The schools organisation 'Educate Together' are due to hold a public meeting in Donegal Town on Thursday 29 May in a bid to gauge parental interest in the setting up of such a school.

Of course the article doesn't say where in Donegal Town ...

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Bluegrass in Kilcar?

Did you know there was a Bluegrass Festival in Kilcar?
http://bluegrassireland.blogspot.com/2008/05/bluegrass-music-and-history-at-kilcar.html
The first Kilcar Folk, Blues, and Bluegrass Festival was held at Kilcar (Cill Chartha), Co. Donegal, on 2-4 May, with bluegrass represented by John Kinsella and the Bluegrass Boys. Thanks to Dublin mandolinist Aran Sheehan, who sat in with the band, for news and photos; the photo above shows

Friday, May 23, 2008

Phil!

The Mammy would be happy to hear about this! Phil Coulter, composer and musician, from Derry has been honoured with the "Freedom Of Donegal":
http://www.derryjournal.com/journal/Phil-39flattered39-by-Donegal-honour.4098817.jp
Internationally acclaimed Derry singer-songwriter Phil Coulter is to be given the Freedom of Donegal.
The award-winning musician, who has a long standing association with Buncrana, will be conferred with the honour by Donegal County Council on Thursday afternoon.

Mr. Coulter last night told the 'Journal' that he was "immensely flattered" by the tribute.

Phil in Tyrone
Phil Coulter Listens To Liam O'Maonlai
Originally uploaded by Fiona MacGinty

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Donegal Sunrise from 1972

CollenM at Flickr just recently posted some pics she took around Donegal Town when she visited in 1972. This is take from the Ballhill youth hostel out in Summer Hill near the Holmes Beach.

Summerhill sunset
Donegal Sunrise
Originally uploaded by ColleenM
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News!

Yoohoo! Donegal has one of the most dangerous stretches of road in Ireland! Maybe we can send all the boy-racers there to get rid of them! (I'm only joking of course.)
http://www.oceanfm.ie/onair/donegalnews.php?articleid=000002924
The N14 road in Donegal and the Sligo Road in Fermanagh have both been singled out as being potential priorities for route action in a report published by the European Road Assessment Programme ... In Donegal, part of the N14 between Letterkenny and Strabane in Co. Tyrone was found to be a medium to high-risk road, with a total of 71 accidents, of varying degrees of seriousness, occuring there between 2002 and 2006.

And 100 new jobs for Dungloe:
http://www.ireland.com/newspaper/breaking/2008/0519/breaking59.htm
http://www.rte.ie/business/2008/0519/jobs.html
Last week it was announced that Randox Laboratories is to invest €7.5m in a diagnostic manufacturing and research and development facility in Dungloe, Co Donegal. This will create 135 jobs over the next three years and is also being supported by Údáras na Gaeltachta.

And Donegal is one of the cheapest place in the country to rent a home:
http://www.oceanfm.ie/onair/donegalnews.php?articleid=000002917
This report found that the typical rent in Donegal for a 3 bed property now stands at around 646euro ... while the average rent nationwide is 1,369euro.


Donegal Town Church, Co Donegal
Originally uploaded by Strabanephotos

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Saturday, May 17, 2008

News!

A blogger humorously laments the loss of "old" Ireland:
http://byebyeshadowlands.blogspot.com/2008/04/open-letter-to-ireland.html
Please go back to the way it was, whatever it takes. Lower your educational standards. Raise your business taxes. Give those billions in investments back to the EU. I long for your days of 20 percent unemployment, famine-based black humor, Incense Catholicism and airborne carcinogens. Tear down the Leixlip Intel plant. Replant the cow pasture. Bludgeon the dual carriageway that transformed Maynooth from a sleepy village outpost to a Dublin bedroom community. Reinvigorate your expatriate tradition. Return your finest youth to London, Boston and Sydney. And return your culture to the way it was meant to be: The way I remember it.

The way I need it to be.

Another office complex for Letterkenny, be interesting to see if it goes ahead:
http://www.nwipp-newspapers.com/dn/free/291602808535060.php
Speaking to the Donegal News yesterday Town Clerk, Mr Paddy Doherty said planning permission had been granted last Thursday. The 43,000 sq ft development consists of a three storey lower basement commercial building including a basement car park, ground floor retail unit, creche and restaurant with office space on the first and second floors and associated car parking. To support the development, Donegal Creameries Plc will also be constructing a 50m roundabout at Ballyraine. "The new roundabout will improve capacity for existing and future motorists and is a key recommendation from a recent independent Traffic Impact Assessment and Road Safety Audit," Mr Whitmore added. Councillor Jim Lynch said yesterday the roundabout would only add to the 'traffic chaos' in the area. "The fact the Bonagee Link Road is not in place means the construction of a roundabout without adequate relief roads will only add to the traffic chaos. The planners seem to be throwing away the Development Plan because a roundabout at this location is not specified in the plan," he said. "Anybody travelling on this road every day is totally frustrated with the traffic delays and a development of this scale will only add to the congestion," he added. There are also concerns from residents of Orchard Grove estate about access-exit onto the road to their homes. In 2005 a successful appeal was taken by local businessman, Mr Thomas Keys of Ballyraine to An Bord Pleanala against plans for a petrol station and supermarket on the site. An Bord Pleanala ruled the proposed development would cause traffic congestion and endanger public safety. It also ruled the development would materially contravene the development objective set out in the Letterkenny and Environs Development Plan 2003 – 2009. As well as the appellant Councillors Jim Lynch and Neil Clarke were listed as observers in the appeal. The grounds for the appeal centred around traffic congestion, there were already adequate petrol stations in the area and there had been a failure to consider the impact of the roundabout on adjoining properties or to consult with their owners. Mr Keys was unavailable for comment yesterday on whether he was considering an appeal to the latest permission.
Yup I know this has nothing to do about Donegal Town, but I think it's interesting to see how the demand (or greed) for development can be stronger than controlling traffic, and following town plans. If the price of oil and petrol keep going up, we're going to see some major changes to people's lives as people are going to prefer living in more compact towns that are easier and cheaper to get around as opposed to the sprawling place that Letterkenny has become. There's no central parking, many of the new developments are scattered on the outskirts of town, traffic is fiendish (for such a wee town), and that feckin' roundabout by the bus station is just scary sometimes.

Now don't get me wrong, I like Letterkenny, it's a great place to go shopping, and the night life is good. But, it's just so spread out for the amount of people in the town. It could be 1/3 of its current physical size instead of scattered housing estates all along the hillsides.

And another Letterkenny story, a developer cuts prices on a new housing estate:
http://www.nwipp-newspapers.com/DN/free/329212427210029.php
Patrick J Doherty and Son will release the latest phase of his development at Ballymacool - The Forest - at ¤189,000, a drop of ¤26,000, next week.

The 20 number three-bedroom semi-detached houses in the final phase of this development is situated in Ballymacool Estate.

That's quite a drop, and I'm sure they're doing this for just the buyers and have no ulterior motive (such as trying to get their money back in case the market really takes a nose dive).

Sheesh, a lot of Letterkenny news this week, come on Donegal Town what's up? :)

NYC! Updated!

I'll be in NYC over the weekend (Friday 9th - Sunday 11th of May) meeting me cousins Fergal & Owen whom are over to see Leitrim play in Gaelige Park in Yonkers, and cousin Liz and her husband Ronan who are living in San Diego for a year. I'll be staying in lower Manhattan, and if your in NYC and would like to meet up send me an e-mail (I can access it from my phone) and maybe we can meet for a few jars.

Mick

mick.timony AT Gmail.com

Update: I had a good time! I stayed the Embassy Suites Hotel in Battery Park, nice hotel in a 2 room suite, with a sofa bed for less than $200 a night (taxes get added on to that so it was more) but cheap for NYC and nice clean rooms. See my review here 0n the hotel if your ever interested in going:
http://www.yelp.com/biz/embassy-suites-new-york#hrid:saicSAUkUYgHlEedhA8aCw
But, don't stay there in the winter as you'll get blasted out of it.

Seen the cousins, drank a bit, eat a bit, walked a but, and site-seen a wee bit. :) And maybe you'll see this pic of Owen Me cousin in the Donegal Times as I submitted it to the Times:

Owen with the Donegal Time in Grand Central

News.

Ballyshannon man blinded for 10 years regains eye sight after surgury in Dublin:
http://www.rte.ie/news/2008/0516/mcnultyl.html?rss
Liam McNulty was blinded in a workplace accident in July 1999, but last week an operation to bring sight back to one of his eyes was successful.

He has paid tribute to his consultant, Billy Power and the surgical staff at the Royal Victoria Eye and Ear Hospital in Dublin. Last week they carried out a procedure known as the Boston Kerato Prosthesis.

More at the Indo:
http://www.independent.ie
Last week at the Eye and Ear hospital in Dublin, he underwent an operation that installed a unique lens in his right eye ...

Mr McNulty explained: "It's a type of disc nearly resembling a button, like a contact lens with a fitting in the lens. It brings the sight from the back of the eye."

... When the bandage was removed 24 hours later he walked unaided from the hospital and shortly afterwards saw his only grandchild, Adam, for the first time since he was born 18 months ago...

Mr McNulty, a construction industry executive, was struck blind in a horrific accident in Dublin when unloading dangerous chemicals from a truck. There was an explosion which ripped off his protective goggles and acid and fumes were blown into his eyes.



Friday, May 16, 2008

Old Postcard of the Quay?

And anyone remember this old John Hinde postcard?
http://www.flickr.com/photos/26221216@N08/2453473803/sizes/m/
Donegal Town, Co. Donegal

If you recognise the people the in the picture:


Contact Postcards2008 (her name is Sharon and I presume she works for RTE) on flickr as she is working on TV programme about old postcards. What she does is find old postcards with people in them and tries to track down all the people and bring them back to the same spot and take a photograph 40 years on. If you don't have a flickr account contact me and I can contact her.

I think the boat was my Uncle Jim's boat? I'll e-mail my cousin Maurice and see if he knows.

Also, see below for a comment from Sharon (click where it says Comments).

News!

International boxing in Inishowen, and Ireland beats Poland:
http://breakingnews.iol.ie/sport/story.asp?j=255662368&p=z55663x74&t=sport
Ireland beat Poland 5-3 in Donegal last night to take a two-bout lead into the second leg of the senior international series on Friday evening.

Tyrone McCullagh, Willie McLoughin, Eric Donovan, David Joyce and Darren O'Neill all recorded victories at a packed Innishowen Hotel in Buncrana.

Both nations will meet again tomorrow night (Friday 16th of May) at the Abbey Hotel in Donegal.

68% of births in Donegal are to parents who are married (to each other I hope):
http://www.highlandradio.com/news.php?articleid=000002095
And the statistics published by the CSO show that in the last three months of 2007 32% percent of births in Donegal were outside marriage.

In Donegal a woman is on average a year younger when she becomes pregnant for the first time. The average age here is 27.6 compared to an average age of 28.9.

The statistics coverage the third quarter of 2007 show that there were a total of 523 birth's registered - 28 of those to under 20's but the most popular age group for having your first born is between 30 and 34.

But you gotta read the next line carefully, pretend it's a maths question from school as I'd guess many of you might be thinking after a quick glance that 32% means single parents.

Of those children born in Donegal 68% were to married couples - and of the 32 % born to unmarried parents a third of those were born to parents who do not share the same address.

So this implies:
  • 68% are married couples
  • 21.5% are unmarried couples
  • 10.5% are single parents
I doubt if this is deliberately confusing, (but don't use percentages and fractions at the same time) however this still implies that 1 in 10 babies born in Donegal in the last quarter of 2007 are in single parent household.

I remember when everyone would all be gossiping when this happened to someone (and thinking the world would end) at least that was better than the 1950's where'd they'd be total social outcasts. Sure it makes the world go around! :)

And here's a pic of Lough Eske Castle that I took in 1995:
Lough Eske Castle ~1995
It used to be a great place to explore and there was even an hidden garden. One time the owners or the people watching the place (I think they lived at the big gate or lodge house on the Harvey's side of the lake) slashed the tyres of our bike and chased us off! Here's a pic of it today.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

News!

This is Donegal Walking Week! So get out there and walk, and if your driving be careful of the pedestrians:
http://www.activedonegal.com/2008/05/12/donegal-walking-week-2/
A number of key statutory and community agencies in Donegal have come together to promote walking as positive physical activity for all abilities to enjoy.

One of RTE's suggested Pedesitians for Spring 2007 was in Donegal!
http://www.rte.ie/weather/spring07/spring07_runnerup4.html

And all Donegal beaches complied with EU regulations!
http://www.rte.ie/news/2008/0507/beach.html
Six local authorities complied fully with EU standards for all their beaches - Donegal, Dún-Laoghaire-Rathdown, Galway City, Kerry, Mayo and Westmeath.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Film!

Film being made up around Inishowen:
http://www.highlandradio.com/news.php?articleid=000002062

The Donegal Film Commission is celebrating its most significant success yet, with production getting underway next Monday on the film "A Shine of Rainbows" in North Donegal.

The film features a number of major actors, including Aidan Quinn and Connie Neilson, and it's hoped it will bring Inishowen and Letterkenny to a large cinema audience. A number of local actors have been given roles in the film.

And an overview of the story from IMDB:
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1014774/

Well Done Mary!

http://www.oceanfm.ie/onair/donegalnews.php?articleid=000002848
There's a strong sense of pride in Donegal today, as the former Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food steps into her new role as the country's Tanaiste.

Frosses native Mary Coughlan was last night appointed Tanaiste, making history by becoming the first person in the county to hold the position.

And some pics from SummerDream:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/summerdreamn/2478454009/
http://www.flickr.com/photos/summerdreamn/2478453599/

Thursday, May 08, 2008

News

Mary Coughlan promoted to Tanaiste:
http://www.independent.ie

Outgoing Irish Agriculture Minister May Coughlan landed a major Government promotion tonight by being appointed Tanaiste and Enterprise, Trade and Employment Minister in Taoiseach Brian Cowen's new-look Cabinet.

Monday, May 05, 2008

Then and Now.

The view from the graveyard on a sunny day in September 2004:
Donegal Town from the Old Abbey.

A similar view on a auld gray day in January 2008:
The new improved Donegal Pier View
Maybe a wee bit of an unfair comparison because is on a sunny day with blue sky, and the other isn't, and they're not taken at exactly the same angle. But, anyway, the new sewer thing is an unsightly eyesore and should have been located around bend past the graveyard. I can't fathom the engineers who thought this was a good location, I'd bet cost was a big factor, another few yards and costs go up. I wonder can you walk on top of the thing and take pics? I'd bet your not supposed to, which is just silly, stick in the way of a view that attracts tourists and .... ah feck it I could complain on all day about this. Anyway, shame on our County Council for building this, and then for saying the town approved it. Yes the town approved it, but the engineers and designer should have know what they were doing and that they were sticking a sewer works in a scenic amenity.

News!

Donegal Chemists say it's not to late to end dispute over medical card holders:
http://www.highlandradio.com/news.php?articleid=000002031

And Psychiatric nurses are doing a go-slow, over injury compensation:
http://www.highlandradio.com/news.php?articleid=000002028

SLOW THE BUCK DOWN!
http://www.highlandradio.com/news.php?articleid=000002046

Northern Donegal seen it's sunniest April in 34 years, and was the sunniest place in the country:
http://www.oceanfm.ie/onair/donegalnews.php?articleid=000002826

Sham weddings taking place in the North, after passing new legislation, the people involved used Donegal instead:
http://www.derryjournal.com/journal/Sham-weddings-moved-to-Donegal.4044002.jp

Donegal & Derry need to work together to encourage migrates from the area to help improve the economy:
http://www.derryjournal.com/journal/39Derry-and-Donegal-must-work.4043887.jp

Thanks to James Whorriskey for the pic from the Gap:
Biddy's Rainbow !

Sunday, May 04, 2008

News!

Why do 20% of road resurfacing fail in Donegal? We don't know but we're looking into it!
http://www.highlandradio.com/news.php?articleid=000002022

Some people don't like the idea of the new private hospital in Letterkenny:
http://www.highlandradio.com/news.php?articleid=000002016

Donegal not getting a say in Derry Airport? (The Irish Government invests in Derry Airport to help invest in the NW).
http://www.highlandradio.com/news.php?articleid=000002020

Anyone go to the Serial Twin gig? Any pics?

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Serial Twin Gig!

Don't forget the Serial Twin gig on Saturday, 3rd of May, at The Reveller Bar, Donegal Town:
http://donegalfriends.blogspot.com/2008/04/serial-twin-record-release-party.html

And you can purchase their songs on Emusic:
http://www.emusic.com/artist/Serial-Twin-MP3-Download/11965969.html

And a video (sorry for the poor quality, but they're really good live):


So go on and pop into the Reveller, enjoy a pint and the tunes, and take some pics for me to post. :)

News!

Solis Lough Eske Castle Hotel is mentioned in Condé Nast Traveller as one of the top new hotels in the world. Read more at the Democrat:
http://www.donegaltoday.ie/ViewArticle2.aspx?SectionID=3423&ArticleID=4028380
And read all about here:
http://www.concierge.com/bestof/hotlist/2008/europe/detail?id=31630&lastUrl=/bestof/hotlist/2008/europe/

Let's hope it get more tourists to visit Donegal! Even if people who can't afford a 5 star hotel, having Solis mentioned in Conde Nast will inspire people to look at Donegal as a holiday destination. And one of the Ferry companies is offered a deal for visitors from the UK:
http://www.easier.com/view/Travel/Holidays/article-176091.html
Leading ferry company Stena Line is offering families an affordable and easy way to travel across the Irish Sea with a two night hotel break in Donegal from an amazing £250 including travel, accommodation and breakfast.

Donegal Creameries profits are up!
http://www.forbes.com/markets/feeds/afx/2008/04/25/afx4933266.html
Donegal Creameries Plc. posted a much higher full-year pretax profit, benefiting from high milk prices and a higher profit-share from associates.

The company reported a pretax profit of 14.99 million euros for the year to Dec. 31, 2007, compared with a restated 4.88 million a year earlier. Turnover rose to 125.62 million euros from 112.23 million ...

More at RTE and here.
Dairy turnover increased 22% to €59.3m, while profits in the division rose €1m. Agri-business turnover grew 4% to €66.4m, with a 'record' year in its seed potato business. During the year Donegal increased its stake in Monaghan Mushrooms from 23% to 35%.

Thanks to Clare&Joe on Flickr for this pic of the Blue Stack!
Irish Pub of the Week #10
Do they still have a pool table in the back room?