An Englishman who has spent 30 years in the world of golf has just reached the halfway point of a 2,000 trek along the Wild Atlantic Way with his golf clubs and bag on his back to raise money for the Galway-based charity Cancer Care West.
Nick Edmund spent 15 years helping to design golf courses for champion golfer Nick Faldo and is the author of several guide books on golf courses in Ireland and the UK. He arrived into the Galway Golf Club in Salthill on Saturday after averaging seven hours walking a day for 57 days.
Unbelievably 51 out of those 57 days have been blessed with good weather. The 56-year-old had set out from Malin Head on March 4 and has so far played on 20 golf courses on the tourist driving route.
At each course he plays just the fourth hole and then hands over a special flag for the club to fly on that hole for the next four months to raise awareness about the campaign. He set up his charity, Global Golf 4 Cancer, after completing a hike through the Himalayas to raise money for cancer research.
In remission from head and neck cancer for over two years, Nick will take a break from the trek until the end of the summer to avoid being exposed to too much sun.
He plans to finish up in Kinsale after restarting the walk in September. At this stage he hopes to have 40 flags flying in the courses along the Wild Atlantic Way.
He found the going very tough for the first couple of weeks after undergoing a ceramic hip replacement on his right side.
On his back he is carrying four clubs and a golf bag, which is heavier than most as it contains all his clothes and an iPad.
“I feel better after eight weeks walking than I did after one. I’m averaging two miles an hour now and around seven hours a day. I walked 14 days in a row for this last leg as I got a bit fitter,” he revealed.
See full story in this week’s Connacht Tribune.
Galway to complete vaccine roll-out by end of the summer
On the first anniversary of Covid-19’s deadly arrival into Ireland, the head of the Saolta hospital group has predicted that all who want the vaccine will have received it by the end of the summer.
Tony Canavan, CEO of the seven public hospitals, told the Connacht Tribune that the HSE was planning to set up satellite centres from the main vaccination hub at the Galway Racecourse to vaccinate people on the islands and in the most rural parts of the county.
While locations have not yet been signed up, the HSE was looking at larger buildings with good access that could be used temporarily to carry out the vaccination programme over a short period.
“We do want to reach out to rural parts of the region instead of drawing in people from the likes of Clifden and over from the islands. The plan is to set up satellites from the main centre, sending out small teams out to the likes of Connemara,” he explained.
“Ideally we’d run it as close as possible to the same time that the main centres are operating once that is set up. Communication is key – if people know we’re coming, it will put people’s minds at rest.”
Get all the latest Covid-19 coverage in this week’s Connacht Tribune, on sale in shops now – or download the digital edition from www.connachttribune.ie
Galway meteorologist enjoying new-found fame in the sun!
Growing up in Galway where four seasons in a day is considered a soft one, Linda Hughes always had a keen interest in the weather.
But unlike most Irish people, instead of just obsessing about it, she actually went and pursued it as a career.
The latest meteorologist to appear on RTE’s weather forecasts hails from Porridgtown, Oughterard, and brings with her an impressive background in marine forecasting.
She spent six years in Aerospace and Marine International in Aberdeen, Scotland, which provides forecasts for the oil and gas industry.
The 33-year-old was a route analyst responsible for planning routes for global shipping companies. She joined the company after studying experimental physics in NUIG and doing a masters in applied meteorology in Redding in the UK.
“My job was to keep crews safe and not lose cargo by picking the best route to get them to their destination as quickly as possibly but avoiding hurricanes, severe storms,” she explains.
“It was a very interesting job, I really enjoyed it but it was very stressful as you were dealing with bad weather all the time because there’s always bad weather in some part of the world.”
Read the full interview with Linda Hughes in this week’s Connacht Tribune, on sale in shops now – or download the digital edition from www.connachttribune.ie
Great-great-grandmother home after Covid, a stroke, heart failure and brain surgery
Her family are understandably calling her their miracle mum – because an 81 year old great-great-grandmother from Galway has bounced back from Covid-19, a stroke, heart failure and brain surgery since Christmas…to return hale and hearty, to her own home.
But Mary Quinn’s family will never forget the trauma of the last three months, as the Woodford woman fought back against all of the odds from a series of catastrophic set-backs.
The drama began when Mary was found with a bleed on her brain on December 16. She was admitted to Portiuncula Hospital, and transferred to Beaumont a day later where she underwent an emergency procedure – only to then suffer a stroke.
To compound the crisis, while in Beaumont, she contracted pneumonia, suffered heart failure and developed COPD, or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease – the inflammatory lung disease that causes obstructed airflow from the lungs.
“Christmas without mom; things did not look good,” said her daughter Catherine Shiel.
But the worst was still to come – because before Mary was discharged, she contracted Covid-19.
Read Mary’s full, heart-warming story in this week’s Connacht Tribune, on sale in shops now – or download the digital edition from www.connachttribune.ie